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From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…

Late Night Snark: Slow, Boring August Edition

"Meet the Press has fired host David Gregory and hired another guy, Chuck Todd, to host. To me, if your name is Chuck Todd, it might as well be David Gregory. Todd Chuck, Gregory David...it makes no difference. They're all interchangeable."
---David Letterman

Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan with caption:
"It looks like Rick Perry's chances in 2016 might be in trouble. Or as Hillary put it: 'One down, four more to go.'"
---Jimmy Fallon

"The recent primaries prove everything I've been saying about how either the Tea Party is resurgent or the Establishment is back."
---Stephen Colbert

"Apple announced it will ban two toxic chemicals that are used in the production of iPhones. In a related story, that iPhone in your pocket right now is made of toxic chemicals."
---Conan O'Brien

And John Oliver for the win:
"So [Missouri Governor Jay Nixon] took a community tired of being treated like criminals and imprisoned them all in their own houses for a night [by imposing a curfew], and in the process of doing so, took on the tone of a pissed-off vice principal trying to restore order at a school assembly. That is profoundly patronizing. […]

If even the governor can't distinguish between the good and the bad elements of the community and has decided to punish everyone equally, then that should go both ways.  I know the police love their ridiculous, unnecessary military equipment, so here’s another patronizing test: let’s take it all away from them, and if they can make it a whole month without killing a single unarmed black man, then---and only then---can they get their fucking toys back."

News flash: there's drinking below the fold. Your west coast-friendly edition of  Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Cheers and Jeers for Friday, August 22, 2014

Note: Due to a faulty GPS device, your designated NSA snooper Bart accidentally set up shop in your salad bowl.  He regrets the error and will be correctly positioned in your ficus plant within the hour.  ---Mgt.
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Bumbershoot 2014 logo Seattle
8 days!!!
By the Numbers:
Days 'til October, when there will be both a solar and lunar eclipse: 40
Days 'til Bumbershoot 2014 in Seattle: 8
Increase in U.S. factory output in July, the 6th straight month of growth: 1%
Total U.S. household debt in the 2nd quarter, down 0.2%: $11.6 trillion
(Source: Federal Reserve of NY)
Percent chance that a whole lot of deficit-obsessed tea partiers own a ton of that debt, but that's okay because, unlike everyone else, they're responsible with their money: 100%
Amount Macy's was fined for racial profiling at its
flagship store in Manhattan: $650,000
Sales of vinyl records in 2007 and 2013, respectively: 1 million / 6.1 million
(Source: The Week)

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Friday Michele Bachmann Departure Countdown

Michele Bachmann and her googly eyes leave Congress in 134 days. In the meantime, we're reminded of her gaffe three years ago this week when she said happy birthday to Elvis on his death day.  She may be leaving, but we'll always have the memories.

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Puppy Pic of the Day:  How Lake Dillon, Colorado Fire-Rescue "earned major karma points."

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CHEERS to bursting Brian Brown's big bigot bubble.  Brown is the head of the National Organization for Marriage, and he got so jazzed by a recent state judge's ruling against gay marriage in Tennessee and the Supreme Court-issued stay on Virginia's federal ruling that he couldn't help but leap to his computer and crank out a victory speech (read: money beg)...

Brian Brown, President of National Organization for Marriage.
"We won one case!"
Great news! … After winning many lawsuits in lower federal courts presided over by hand-picked, liberal, activist judges, the momentum behind the marriage redefinition agenda is waning. … You might not know about it because the media is doing everything it can to ignore the facts. The rush to judgment declaring marriage to be unconstitutional is not only premature---it's flat out wrong!
Golly, he's psyched!  (Never mind that a lot of those judges were, in fact, appointed by Republican presidents.)  The momentum is shifting in their direction!  [Dramatic pause]  Oops---looks like the momentum just shifted back:
Freedom to Marry graphic about federal judge approving gay marriage in Florida.
Oh yeah, Brian? We've won 38 of
'em, plus a Supreme Court case.
[On] August 21, U.S. District Court Judge Robert Hinkle ruled in favor of the freedom to marry in Florida, the first federal judge to strike down Florida's ban on marriage for same-sex couples. His ruling follows four previous state court rulings in favor of marriage for same-sex couples in Florida earlier this summer. … "The Supreme Court has repeatedly recognized the fundamental right to marry. … The Florida provisions that prohibit the recognition of same-sex marriages lawfully entered elsewhere, like the federal provision, are unconstitutional. So is the Florida ban on entering same-sex marriages."
Oh well.  It was fun while it lasted.  Right, Brian?

JEERS to Police with a Patton complex.  All over the country, media outlets are reporting on local law enforcement's response to the growing movement to get hardcore military equipment out of their hands (and garages).  Here in Maine, the last place where this stuff is needed, our men in blue camouflage say no no no, we've actually turned into Fallujah:

Violent crime rates in Virginia, Maine and other states.
Maine has less violent crime than any other
state. But police say they need more tanks.
Because boys like to play with their toys.
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[I]t’s not clear how many armored vehicles, perhaps among the most visibly intimidating military equipment acquired by local agencies, have come to Maine.

Both South Portland and Sanford, which have armored vehicles, have used them at least once this year: South Portland during a standoff that turned into a suicide, and Sanford to serve a warrant on a suspect in an armed bank robbery. Portland used its armored vehicle during an incident in 2011 in the Riverton apartment complex in which police were in a standoff with several men they believed were armed. Several people were arrested, but no guns were found.

Really. How in God's name did any of those situations warrant military assault vehicles and weapons? They didn't. And here's the kicker:
The equipment upgrade is occurring despite a violent crime rate in Maine---12 violent crimes per 10,000 residents---that is less than one-third the national average. But police say failing to prepare for a violent incident invites trouble. … "If you look all over the country, no one thought that horrific incident in Sandy Hook would happen, but it did,” he said. “At Columbine (High School), no one expected someone would go into a school and start shooting. Now the standard has changed."
Such bullshit. How did armored vehicles and assault weapons make anyone safer when those criminals killed themselves after they'd done their dastardly deeds? What terrible examples. All the damage is usually done before the Armored Division arrives.  As someone said here on the front page Wednesday, de-militarizing the police is going to be an uphill fight.  Mostly because guess which side has all the tanks and ain't afraid to use 'em?

Mitch's platform.
JEERS to children playing with the "off" switch.  I don’t know why Politico thinks this is news, but in an EXCLUSIVE HARDCORE ANYTHING GOES ROCK 'N ROLL INTERVIEW with---[yawn]---Mitch McConnell, the Senate minority leader says he plans to shut down the federal government again.  Yeah, Mitch, when you do it, please let us know.  Seriously---we need you to let us know.  Otherwise we'll all just assume it's another day on Capitol Hill ending in y.

CHEERS to tea and bragging rights.  163 years ago today, in 1851, the schooner America outraced a small fleet of British ships belonging to the Royal Yacht Squadron off the English coast to win the trophy that came to be known as the America's Cup.  I believe I speak for all Americans today when I say:  [Pulls down pants]  "Kiss me bum, blokes!"  (With all due respect. Bless yer hearts.)

Crying baby
George III
CHEERS to pissing off the dude in the curlers.  I don’t mean to pile on Britain tonight, but what the hell, let's go for it.  On tomorrow's date in 1775, King George III got all pissy and accused the colonies of being in "an open and avowed rebellion" and asked "our obedient and loyal subjects to use their utmost endeavours to withstand and suppress such rebellion, and to disclose and make known all treasons and traitorous conspiracies which they shall know to be against us."  And we were all, like, "Huh?  Are you referring to little old us?  Why, we’re just grubby li'l old farmers and fussy old shopkeepers---we wouldn’t hurt a fly!"  Then we declared independence and kicked his ass.  Psych!

CHEERS to home vegetation.  If the TV beckons this weekend, here are some fine programming choices for your viewing pleasure.  First, there's the 92 hours of stuff you've recorded but haven't got around to watching yet.  Beyond that, slim pickins.  New DVD releases include Kevin Costner in rumpled football coach mode in Draft Day, and if you've always wanted your own veiny blue plastic Jamie Foxx head, the deluxe edition of Spiderman 2 delivers!  Your baseball schedule is here.  (My baseball schedule won't start up again until next spring.)  On Bill Moyers & Company, Billeh revisits an interview with Joseph Stiglitz.  And here's your Sunday morning lineup.  Please hold your applause until racism is no longer an issue in America:

Meet the Press: R.I.P.

Ham with glasses represwenting Karl Rove on
Karl Rove remains a Very Serious
Person on the Sunday morning shows
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This Week: House Homeland Security Committee Chair Rep. Michael McCaul (R-TX); Rep. William Lacy Clay (D-MO), who represents Ferguson in Congress; roundtable with Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD), patron saint of patronizing zombies Peggy Noonan, David Plouffe, and living example of all that is wrong with humanity Bill Kristol.

Face the Nation: The headliners are both Republicans: Sen. Kelly Ayotte and Rep. Paul Ryan, the latter invited on to plug his 100% forgettable ghost-written book; Rep. Lacy Clay (D-MO) gets third billing; Gary Sinise on the disabled vets memorial; roundtable with Nia-Malika Henderson (WaPost), David Rohde (Reuters), Susan Page (USA Today), Margaret Brennan (CBS) and Bob Orr (CBS).  

CNN's State of the Union: Who knows?  Apparently their bookers are still behind the dumpster smoking doobies with a hologram of David Gergen.

Fox GOP Talking Points Sunday: This week it's Chris Wallace's turn to babysit John McCain while Cindy goes shopping; roundtable with Bob Woodward, Juan Williams, Laura Ingraham, and Easter-ham-wearing-glasses Karl Rove.

Happy sleeping in.

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Five years ago in C&J: August 22, 2009

Color coded terror threat alert chart
Fear Everything!
JEERS to "the intersection of politics, fear, credibility and security."  Those the words of Tom Ridge in his new book, which confirms what we all knew: the Bush administration created the Department of Homeland Security to secure Bush and Cheney's homeland re-election:
Ridge was never invited to sit in on National Security Council meetings; was "blindsided" by the FBI in morning Oval Office meetings because the agency withheld critical information from him...and was pushed to raise the security alert on the eve of President Bush’s re-election, something he saw as politically motivated and worth resigning over.
Of course, after the election there was a completely legitimate reason to raise the terror threat level from yellow to orange: Bush won.

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And just one more…

Fantom, cat belonging to Bill in Portland Maine and Common Sense Mainer
Sunning on the roof.
CHEERS to the birthday pootie.  Five years ago today, Michael and I visited our local shelter to adopt a fuzzball with an attitude, and chose the pootie that bit our ankles the least.  We named her Fantom on account of she has a mask like the Phantom of the Opera (but with an F to avoid any more Andrew Lloyd Webber lawsuits, like the time he went after us for naming a previous pootie "Jesus Christ Superstar").  Fantom is a petite calico with stubby legs---the dachshund of the cat world, we call her. She's pretty much in the middle of the Sociability Scale: says hello half the time, says goodbye half the time.

Fantom, cat belonging to Bill in Portland Maine and Common Sense Mainer
"Kneel, peasants."
Fantom's days are filled with typical cativities: eat, barf, sleep, drink out of the faucet, barf some more, have stare-downs with squirrels, teach our dog Haley who's boss, de-wing flies, purr when skritched, fill out petitions to impeach Obama, and turn down any food not topped with beluga caviar.  She's a cat schooled in the mysterious arts of "teh kitteh," and today we prostrate ourselves at the altar of Fancy Feast and wish Fantom a Happy Barfday.  Did I mention she barfs a lot?  She barfs a lot.

Have a great weekend.  Floor's open...What are you cheering and jeering about today?

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Poll

Who won the week?

2%81 votes
31%934 votes
7%221 votes
3%93 votes
8%257 votes
11%341 votes
17%526 votes
2%75 votes
2%72 votes
1%31 votes
11%328 votes

| 2961 votes | Vote | Results

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