I just had one of those delightful laughing fits that almost brings out the tears. It’s not everyday one gets amusement and a first-class historical reenactment. One has to make the most of it – thus, I share it with you. Rejoice! 2,000 years and nothing changes.
That was or was supposed to be the beginning of today’s Senate committee session in re the confirmation process of Judge Brett Kavanaugh. I don’t need to narrate anything. Corruption, ineptitude, and chaotic idiocy vibrantly displayed. And then! Then the SJW fools in the back commenced the “REEEEEEEEE!!!!!!!!!” hysterics literally as could have been scripted by Vox Day.
All of this should have been expected. The collective shenanigans are nothing to worry about. THIS is exactly the way it is today.
What touched my mind and heart was the knowledge that this is also the way it was, way back when.
Fans of Tacitus, you may recall the hobby sport of Tiberius – observing the flailing, wailing proceedings of the Roman Senate. In the true, laughable, and often heard words of the Emperor: Nisti Servitus!*
They need a man in a top hat with a whip. Maybe some clowns and monkeys. I see that no one has any popcorn.
*Yeah. Yeah. Yeah. He may have said it in Greek. Lemme know if you were there…
Sharpening the double-edged sword:
The Zuck is on the Hill, facing off against a panel of Senatorial Congress Critters:
Some of the toughest questioning so far comes from Sen. Lindsey Graham, who pushes Zuckerberg on whether Facebook is a monopoly.
When asked straight up whether Facebook has a monopoly, Zuckerberg responds “It certainly doesn’t feel like that to me.” The response is met with some gentle laughter.
Graham stays on him, also asking about European regulations and if those rules are right.
“I think they get things right,” Zuckerberg responds, followed by a few more light chuckles.
Chuckles aside, ask yourself this: “When has government regulation ever worked out all that well?” And I’m talking from a freedom of action perspective.
As big, bad, intrusive, and even dangerous as Facebook may be, I’m not aware of them, or any other Social, ever putting a gun to anyone’s head to compel usage, payment, or actions. I could be wrong; I would have asked about it had I been there…
The same cannot be said for government, any government. They have been known to point and click with guns and worse weapons. The State is force. Period.
Facebook, and all the socials, already fall under one form or existing regulation or another. There’s a reason Zuck is being so polite and helpful seeming today. He knows that, with 55 million or 80 million privacy violations, Facebook could be FTC fined out of existence. It won’t be but it could be.
Rather, I see a bunch of Uniparty animals chomping at the bit to further intrude into the internet – for our good and safety and all of course. Is that really what we need?
I assume the answer from most Americans is a big, blank, unconcerned, drooling stare.
UPDATE: A few things:
- Listening to many of these questions and grandstands is more cringeworthy than most of the answers. “I do’h wanna reg-ya-late ya but golly gee ah will!”
- Today privacy is largely an illusion – especially if you willingly put yourself out there without encryption, VPNs, etc. You do that? Buyer, escuse me, … freebie user beware.
- A good friend reminded me that we’ve all known that the government tracks, records, stores, and misappropriates all electronic communications and that we’ve known it for years. (Originally one of them thar crazy conspiracy theories…) Knowing all that, how many folks do NOT use email, socials, and phones? Yeah.
- NO! Most people don’t read disclaimers. That would require reading.
- Large corporations LOVE regulation. It’s not them versus the government. It’s them and the government versus you and any poor startups. “Protecting” you by ensuring their monopolies and increased profits.
- We’re witnessing the mass slander of the free market and the sense of the people. The latter might be warranted.
- “Senator. Senator… Senator!” How about: “listen scumbag” and “you criminals”?
- With all these idiots babbling about the complexity of the user agreements, Zuck could just answer: “Enough about me. How about YOUR tax code?”
- Can’t believe I’m taking the side of Zuck and Co. here.
Zuck it up. Drudge.
AG Jeff Sessions testified today before a
gang of clowns Senate panel. They discussed A LOT. They talked about Russia. Then Russia again. This was followed by further talk about Russia.
Then they talked about drugs, specifically opioids. They say we have an epidemic of abuse and fraud in America. And, the low-caliber, tax-feeding nature of these discussants aside, we really do.
Last year something like 70,000 people died from taking and/or abusing opioids – either the doctor blessed kind or the cartel brews. That’s a lot of bodies: about 280 times as many people killed by “assault rifles” and about 6 times as many people killed in all murders combined; about twice as any people as were killed by “assault” automobiles. Yes, yes, 70,000 is less than 1/10th of the numbers killed annually by either sugar or abortion, but this is about Sessions’s comments on the dope.
Sessions channeled his inner Nancy Reagan: Just Say ‘No.‘ Seriously.
His full (and I mean 3+ hours FULL) comments, here:
Clown Show Senate/YouTube.
All this has me thinking – this is a very serious and deadly subject. Maybe we should declare a war. The War on Drugs™! We’ve never tried anything like it so what could it possibly hurt?
After all: our war on poverty completely eradicated all poorness and suffering; our war on terror has eliminated all violence throughout the Middle East and from places like New York, London, Nice, Berlin, Orlando, Paris, and Minneapolis; our wars in Korea and Vietnam removed all traces communism from Asia; and our war on monetary policy has forever halted the down parts of the business cycle. And, all of these were achieved quickly and for very low cost.
As a first step I would recommend making drugs illegal.
As an interim measure I might make a dog and pony show of pretending to crack down on powerful special interest groups. Maybe a few show trials.
The last thing I would do is try to figure out why on Earth 70,000 citizens and residents of the greatest nation in the history of the world would feel desperate enough to resort to mind and body-killing narcotics as their (perceived) only way out. No sense in that.
Just say ‘No.”
Slow, torturous, idiotic, pitiful failure.
Totally in charge and utterly impotent. The Dems don’t even have a mouthpiece at present – not that they need one now. And those who voted LP, etc. threw their votes away? Maybe it’s time for an Alt-Right party.
This is the most pitiful crowd of governing idiots ever assembled. Tacitus’s recitation of Tiberius’s mocking condemnation of the Roman Senate seems kind and weak by comparison to what must be said of this rabble.
I miss the old days, when Republicans stood for repealing Obamacare. Republicans across the country and every member of my caucus campaigned on repeal – often declaring they would tear out Obamacare “root and branch!”
Now too many Republicans are falling all over themselves to stuff hundreds of billions of taxpayers’ dollars into a bill that doesn’t repeal Obamacare and feeds Big Insurance a huge bailout.
Obamacare regulations? Still here. Taxes? Many still in place, totaling hundreds of billions of dollars.
Insurance company bailouts? Those, too. Remember when Republicans complained about Obamacare’s risk corridors? Remember when we called the corridors nothing more than insurance company bailouts? I remember when one prominent GOP candidate during a presidential debate explicitly called out the Obamacare risk corridors as a bailout to insurance companies. Does anyone else?
Now, the Senate GOP plan being put forward is chock full of insurance bailout money – to the tune of nearly $200 billion. Republicans, present company excluded, now support the idea of lowering your insurance premium by giving a subsidy to the insurance company.
Remarkable. If the GOP now supports an insurance stabilization fund to lower insurance prices, maybe they now support a New Car stabilization fund to lower the price of cars. Or maybe the GOP would support an iPhone stabilization fund to lower the price of phones.
The possibilities are limitless once you accept that the federal government should subsidize prices. I remember when Republicans favored the free choice of the marketplace.
The Senate Obamacare bill does not repeal Obamacare. I want to repeat that so everyone realizes why I’ll vote “no” as it stands now:
The Senate Obamacare bill does not repeal Obamacare. Not even close.
In fact, the Senate GOP bill codifies and likely expands many aspects of Obamacare.
Thank you, again, Senator Paul. Much like his father and, unfortuantely, probably doomed to Ron’s effectiveness. There is no hope in either conservatism or in the utterly failed GOP.
All we have left? Applewhite/AP.
My Republican friends, please, please, please, please remember this (and more) come the next election – I’ll be here to remind you. Kindly retire the mantra that you, “have to vote Republican or else the Democrats will win.” You did and they have. The GOP, by this measure at least, is the worst offender of the two.
Just pathetic. Men not even fit for slavery.
I was assured that Karen Handel’s trouncing of the zone jumper boy would instantly fix everything. Yet, now, we here murmurs in the Senate against Trump-RyanCare, or ObamaCare II. Rand and his three fellow conservative musketeers lead a revolt.
The four conservative GOP senators — Rand Paul of Kentucky, Mike Lee of Utah, Ron Johnson of Wisconsin and Ted Cruz of Texas — released a joint statement Thursday afternoon outlining their concerns:
“Currently, for a variety of reasons, we are not ready to vote for this bill, but we are open to negotiation and obtaining more information before it is brought to the floor. There are provisions in this draft that represent an improvement to our current healthcare system but it does not appear this draft as written will accomplish the most important promise that we made to Americans: to repeal Obamacare and lower their healthcare costs.”
“It looks like a reiteration or a keeping of Obamacare,” Sen. Paul told reporters Thursday afternoon. “I’m a ‘no’ on the bill currently.”
Trump promised us “the best healthcare.” McConnell said he would rip up ObamaCare “root and branch.” Ryan whimpered something. What gives. Rush told us for 25 years the Republicans were the conservatives. Odd, that they would keep having problems getting legislation past that element within their own party.
“Yeah … no.” Freedom Works.
The shame of it is that these fools are in complete control. The loyal opposition in disarray, unable to win sure runoffs, the Jellyfish Party could simply ram through a full repeal and be done with it – the ensuing “Russia” accusations aside.
No, the real shame is the continuing charade of the “two-party system” and its…
No, wait, the actual shame is that the people believe in any of this. It’s 2017. 10,000 years of political lies would seem enough.
Whatever it is, it is a shame.
For shame. Idiots.
Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) has proposed the Terrorist Firearms Prevention Act of 2016, popularly known as the Collins Amendment. Who could possibly be against such a thing? I am, for one. Her proposal is similar to Diane Feinstein’s S.551 and several other meaningless measures floating around the septic tank of Congress. Her’s is the one in the news today having passed a procedural vote 52-46. Here’s the majority of the Amendment (click the picture for the whole thing):
The vote had to be of the unrecorded, oral variety as I can’t find reference to it. Congress frequently avoids such disclosure. Why would anyone want to readily know how his Senator voted on something anyway? There are reasons a rational man would oppose such a “common sense” law. Anyway, support for this version of gun control is being hailed as some sort of crack in the GOP/NRA wall against a safer America.
Lindsey Graham (R-SC) is a co-sponsor of the Act so we can assume he was among the 52. His explanation of its provisions highlight the problems with the Amendment and various other government projects. Per the Times story:
Republicans find it much easier to explain enacting gun restrictions to constituents devoted to the Second Amendment if they can frame their position as an act against terrorism.
“The Constitution’s a sacred document, but it is not a suicide pact,” said Senator Lindsey Graham, Republican of South Carolina and a gun owner. “This is not hard for me. Due process is important, but at the end of the day, we are at war.”
WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today made this statement after voting in support of the Collins amendment to prevent terrorists from buying guns.
The amendment survived a procedural vote, 52-46, and remains eligible for a final vote.
“At the end of the day this really is about counter-terrorism, not gun control. We are a nation at war against radical Islam and under increasing threats both here at home and abroad.
“President Obama’s foreign policy has been a failure and helped give rise to the very threats we face. I have long argued we must do more to counter the threat abroad. However, it is also important we take steps here at home to protect ourselves as well. It’s why I supported the Collins Amendment.
“Simply put — I don’t want anyone who is too dangerous to fly on a plane to buy a gun.
“To be on these lists today means there is reasonable suspicion and credible evidence that the individual in question is involved with or in support of terrorist activities. There are about 109,000 people on these lists and 99% of them are foreign nationals, not U.S. citizens. There are only about 2,700 Americans who could be impacted by this measure.
“I believe in due process and I was insistent the amendment contain provisions to ensure those who should not be on these lists can clear their name. We put the burden of proof on the government to show the individual is a danger and should not be allowed to purchase a gun. If the government fails, the individual’s rights are upheld and the government will pay their legal tab.
“This debate will continue and I will continue to work to find common ground that both protects the rights of law-abiding citizens and prevents terror suspects from purchasing guns. The differences between the competing approaches are narrowing.
“I will continue to strive to be a senator that can bring us together and find common ground in times of great threat.
He’s right about continuing to strive to be a senator but all wrong beyond that.
The Act isn’t about counter-terrorism or about gun control. It’s just another law and another burden on the people.
Graham is correct that Hussein Obama’s policies have only made the threat of terrorism worse. To be fair though, Hussein Obama has only continued the disaster of a policy put in place by Bush 43. And Graham’s proposals on the subject, whenever he spouts off, are always of the kind which would make things EVEN WORSE.
At home he says there are 109,000 people on the watch lists. Of those only 1% or 2,700 are U.S. Citizens (closer to 2.5% by my math). If 106,300 foreign nationals are on the lists of suspected terrorists, why the hell are they not rounded up and deported immediately?
Neither Graham nor any other Senator really cares about Due Process. This proposal, like S.551, has a huge loophole to allow the Attorney General carte blanche authority over who goes on the list and allows the government to ultimately assert national security as an end-around to avoid due process in court. By Graham’s math that means 2,700 Americans right now could be out of luck; the list would surely grow if the Act passes into law. Don’t look for any of the foreigners to go home; in fact, more and more will just keep coming.
Graham’s position may be summed up as: “We’re at war (with an enemy we created and brought home). Therefore the Second Amendment and due process of law can go out the window.”
The saddest part of all this (as if it isn’t sad enough) is that the whole thing is pointless. Gun control does not work to stop gun violence. Period. None of the criminals and terrorists Collins and Graham feign interest in stopping would be subjected to any provisions of the Act. The University of Chicago “just discovered” that criminals don’t buy guns the legal way (surprise, surprise!). So much for soft gun control controlling crime. Even hardened European gun control does next to nothing to stop gun violence. When it comes to government gun control it’s all about the state controlling citizens and about perception (image over substance).
Then there’s the issue of bombs…
All this shows again and again you cannot trust the people who created the problem to know how to solve it. Don’t buy the gun-fly lie.
Senators propose more burdens on the People. NY Times.
The blood hasn’t even been cleaned up from the Battle of Orlando and Senate Democrats are after guns. Dianne Feinstein and Chuck Schumer are once again pushing the Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act of 2015 (S.551).
Senate Democrats are making a new push for legislation that would bar suspected terrorists from buying guns, a proposal that 53 of 54 Senate Republicans opposed last year.
Sen. Charles Schumer (N.Y.), the Democrats’ chief political strategist, and several colleagues on Monday held a conference call with reporters, one day after the massacre at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Fla., to revive the Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act of 2015.
“In terms of terrorism, this is the most effective piece of legislation we can pass,” Schumer told reporters.
He added it has a greater chance of passing the GOP-controlled Senate than a ban on assault-style, semi-automatic rifles or high-capacity ammunition clips.
“We want to get something done,” he added.
“In the wake of Orlando, we have to think about what kind of country and what kind of Senate we’re going to be,” Schumer told reporters on the call. “Are we going to bow down to the [National Rifle Association] NRA so that suspected terrorists can get their hands on guns? Or are we going to take the painfully obvious, common-sense step and make sure that suspected terrorists can’t get guns?”
- The Hill, June 13, 2016.
It’s not the terrorists, it’s the NRA. Same old, same old – blame the victims. There not even concerned about real terrorists, just “suspected terrorists”. The Act is riddled with problems. First, it just won’t work. A complete ban on guns wouldn’t work. European countries have strict gun control and still have mass shootings. In the absence of guns, the terrorists resort to knives and bombs – both of which can be made at home from common materials. Are they going to ban cleaning products and fertilizer next? The Act runs afoul of the Second Amendment. Not that the Constitution is in vogue anymore. The Act also presents Due Process issues.
There is one summary for S.551. Bill summaries are authored by CRS.
Introduced in Senate (02/24/2015)
Denying Firearms and Explosives to Dangerous Terrorists Act of 2015
Amends the federal criminal code to authorize the Attorney General to deny the transfer of a firearm or the issuance of a firearms or explosives license or permit (or revoke such license or permit) if the Attorney General: (1) determines that the transferee is known (or appropriately suspected) to be engaged in terrorism or has provided material support or resources for terrorism, and (2) has a reasonable belief that the transferee may use a firearm in connection with terrorism. Allows any individual whose firearms or explosives license application has been denied to bring legal action to challenge the denial.
Extends the prohibition against the sale or distribution of firearms or explosives to include individuals whom the Attorney General has determined to be engaged in terrorist activities. Imposes criminal penalties on individuals engaged in terrorist activities who smuggle or knowingly bring firearms into the United States.
Authorizes the Attorney General to withhold information in firearms and explosives license denial revocation lawsuits and from employers if the Attorney General determines that the disclosure of such information would likely compromise national security.
If someone is a known or suspected terrorist, why is he allowed to walk free? Why is he encouraged to come to America and live well off the doll? Because it’s not about fighting terrorism, just about fighting guns.
Anyone can land on one of the government’s existing arbitrary and secret watch lists. The Act maintains the same level of secrecy and fiat. Note that tremendous discretion is granted to the Attorney General to determine who and who is not eligible to purchase a gun. While legal recourse for victims … individuals … is provided for, it is neutered by a “national security” disclosure prohibition. As Courts routinely allow national security exemptions without question there is effectively no legal recourse for one who finds himself on the list.
The government frequently targets certain groups (see the IRS vs. the Tea Party). It is certain that enforcement of the Act would be rank with abuse. Meanwhile the terrorists would continue to operate unhindered. This is one of the many “solutions” from D.C. which will do nothing except make matters worse. Suggest to your elected rodents they oppose this illegal and counterproductive measure.
Everyone knows the only valid conspiracy theories are those put forth by the government for consideration by wise judges and noble, attentive jurors. You know – conspiracy to commit murder, conspiracy to rob a bank, conspiracy to catch a short lobster – serious crimes (the base crimes of murder and robbery simply are not enough; the conspiring, rather than the act, is what counts). Theories about the origin and operation of the Federal Reserve, MK Ultra, Operation Northwoods, Bretton Woods, and the imperfect ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment are the stuff of insane fantasy. Sure, they all turned out to be true but, come on, crazy, crazy, crazy.
No set of such lunatic fancies have a deeper and more fanatical following than those surrounding the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. The truth is plain and simple: 19 young, poor, semi-educated men from Saudi Arabia (one or two of whom may have known someone who once said they met Osama Bin Laden), who hated Americans for their freedoms and who did not receive any state support, moved through and received some training in Germany and England, arriving in their base of operations in the United States where they carried out the most sophisticated terror attacks in history without any warning whatsoever, thus justifying wars against Afghanistan, Iraq, Yemen, Libya, and Syria. Clear as a bell, really.
The crazies come up with all sorts of wholly unbelievable drivel regarding this simple event. They ask why Larry Silverstein insured the World Trade Center for twice its value and specifically against terrorist attacks a few months before 9/11. They ask why Israelis were stationed around New York like spectators at a football game on 9/11. They ask why President Bush didn’t immediately react once told of the attacks. They ask why Saudis were allowed to freely travel out of the U.S. on 9/11 when all other travel was banned. They ask why a CIA Clandestine Services agent would seem to have so much information about the attacks as to basically narrate them as and before they unfolded. So many damned questions! Are they trying to learn something!?
These jokers actually insinuate that explosives were used to bring down the Towers that day; they claim airliners were insufficient for the job. The “proof” they foist on the sane consists of things like the following: That the modern buildings were specifically designed to withstand crashes by jumbo jets. That jet fuel fueled fires are not hot enough to melt steel. That the maximum temperatures in those fire were around 1800 degrees while months later hot pockets revealed temperatures in excess of 4000 degrees. That there were traces of titanium diboride found in the rubble. These nuts even claim the BBC reported the collapse of WTC building No. 7 twenty minutes before it happened. This screen capture from 9/11 disproves that one:
Now we welcome a new nut to the bag – former U.S. Senator Bob Graham. Graham was once chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence so he obviously knows nothing about anything regarding either government or intelligence. I met the man once; he tried to tell me his suit was blue when it was inarguably gray. Now Graham is set to tell another whopper and feed the 9/11 conspiracy furnaces under the internet loony ward.
Sunday he will go on CBS’s 60 Minutes and drop a bombshell of a lie. He seems to think the 19 hijackers had outside, professional and state level help. He thinks the public needs to know what’s on the 28 pages of classified information redacted out of the 9/11 Commission Report. “I think it’s implausible to believe that 19 people, most of whom didn’t speak English, most of whom had never been in the United States before, many didn’t have a high school education, could have carried out such a complicated task without some support from within the United States,” said Senator Nutjob.
There has been great speculation, this year and going back to 2001, about official Saudi involvement in the attacks. Just because the attackers were from Saudi Arabia means nothing. Maybe they met with other Saudis in the U.S. prior to the attacks. Who cares!? Yes, those other Saudis had to leave the country in a hurry – they had flights to catch. Geesh.
Some like Graham are demanding the 28 pages be declassified. They say the time has come, that the classification was only done by the Bush Administration to protect security interests while the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq raged. So what if those wars are history now (and such impressive successes too)? The release would only confuse the literate public about the nature of the original 9/11 Report.
That Report is the gospel truth. Sure the Commission said the government obstructed the investigation. Sure, Cheney and Bush refused to testify under oath. Yes, the Commission co-chair said the Commission was “set up to fail”. Senator Bob Kerrey said the Commission was denied access to evidence. Commissioner Tim Roemer said the government made false statements to the Commission. Yes, Senator Max Clelland walked off the job and called the Commission “compromised” and a “national scandal”. What’s the big deal?
For many more examples of this deranged questioning of the honesty of government read 7 Reasons 9/11 Could NOT Have Been An Inside Job by the Washington Blog, April 5, 2016. An example of the insidious whining:
Much of the 9/11 Commission Report was based upon the testimony of people who were tortured. At least four of the people whose interrogation figured in the 9/11 Commission Report have claimed that they told interrogators information as a way to stop being “tortured”. One of the Commission’s main sources of information was tortured until he agreed to sign a confession that he was NOT EVEN ALLOWED TO READ.
- Blog, citing NBC News source.
If you can’t trust a torture coerced confession, what can you trust? You can certainly trust the U.S. government. It has never lied about anything. Well, except for lying about the Federal Reserve, MK Ultra, Operation Northwoods, Bretton Woods, the imperfect ratification of the Sixteenth Amendment, Waco, income tax withholding, income tax brackets, social security, elections, the drug war, Pearl Harbor, the Grace Commission, JFK’s assassination, MLK’s assassination, the Bay of Pigs invasion, the U.S.S. Maine, the U.S.S. Liberty, the Gulf of Tonkin, weapons of mass destruction, global warming, education, VA medical treatment, the national debt, the deficit, trade agreements, the gold standard, Three Mile Island, gun control, immigration and about a thousand other things.
Those with conspiracy theories questioning our benevolent Washington (that’s you, Mr. Graham!) are just plain crazy.