Linky Friday #190: Health & Enlightenment


dracula photo

Image by lucyfrench123 Linky Friday #190: Health & Enlightenment

[A1] Jeffrey Tucker says that writing a book is easy, and publishing it is easier. These things aren’t false, though writing a publishable book (as in one you would want others to read) is more difficult.

[A2] A volcano caused three years of darkness, and gave birth to Frankenstein and Dracula.

[A3] Sometimes you can actually tell instead of show.

[A4] It’s like renaissance art, but with auto mechanics.

[A5] Animations of Kafka, if you’re into that sort of thing. Also, the first animated Soviet movie.

[A6] Van Gogh? Here you go.


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Image by Muhammad Ashiq Linky Friday #190: Health & Enlightenment

[E1] Innovating with dual language learners Deep In the Heart of Texas.

[E2] Well this doesn’t sound good.

[E3] Jon Marcus explores the unexpected pros and cons of free college. Looks like there’s some interest in bringing back tuitions, in some form or another.

[E4] Borrowing down, college prices up not as much.

[E5] This seems creepy, but I could actually see it being really helpful.

[E6] Everything bad for you is good for you! Or, at least, maybe not as bad as we thought?


Image by devendramakkar

Image by devendramakkar Linky Friday #190: Health & Enlightenment

[M1] America: We got all kinds.

[M2] Pitting liberal values against one another: Labor vs diversity (and the arts!).

[M3] The ABA Journal looks at why minority women are disappearing from Big Law.

[M4] Net migration from Mexico is no longer the story.

[M5] Dr Farah Khan explains how she deals with racist patients and the frustration of being denied as an Indian and an American.

[M6] Black Enterprise looks at the state of inequality in the black community.


[G1] How women fit in (and aren’t allowed to fit in) to the national security establishment.

[G2] Things men and people with homes don’t have to think about: How homeless women handle their periods.

[G3] When men are outearned by women, they don’t do less rather than more housework… except cooking. {via Vikram}

[G4] Ester Bloom says that we shouldn’t give up on the gender wage gap, with some ideas on how to fight it.

[G5] Ruth Graham reports on the new face of pro-life activism.


addiction photo

Image by getchaos Linky Friday #190: Health & Enlightenment

[H1] It seems noteworthy that while Democrats are (marginally) more worried about the safety of vaccines, that it’s GOP politicians that have campaigned on the issue. A product of Republican beliefs that parents should make the decisions, Republican politicians just more willing to pander (to some types), or temperamental paranoia making the Republican electorate?

[H2] I’d always thought that orthodontic braces typically were health-positive rather than just being cosmetic, but Michael Thomsen takes issue with that. Julie Gunlock writes more about straight teeth.

[H3] It seems that 2013 was the first year that primary care physicians brought in more net revenue to hospitals than specialists. (PDF)

[H4] Stanton Peele says that if you’re asking whether coffee or nicotine is more addictive, you’re asking the wrong question.

[H5] Everybody knows what smoking is, and second-hand smoke and third-hand. Sensible Smoker helps out by explaining fourth-through-tenth hand smoking.

[H6] Ben Stiller talks about being diagnosed with cancer. Tangential, but if you haven’t seen Funny People, I recommend it if you like stories that involve questions of mortality and can tolerate Adam Sandler.

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Will Truman is a former professional gearhead who is presently a stay-at-home father in the Mountain East. He has moved around frequently, having lived in six places since 2003, ranging from rural outposts to major metropolitan areas. He also writes fiction, when he finds the time. ...more →

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444 thoughts on “Linky Friday #190: Health & Enlightenment

  1. G3 [men doing less housework]: From the article:

    …one way some men are responding to their slipping place in the social hierarchy is by supporting Donald Trump, whose rhetoric hearkens to a less progressive, more traditional time.

    But another way men react to having their masculinity threatened is stealthier. They do fewer chores,….


    The only exception to this double-injustice? Cooking.
    Before the recession, cooking followed the same pattern as housework, with out-earned men doing relatively little of it. “Cooking is not seen as being as intertwined with masculinity as housework,” the Cassinos [authors of the study cited in the article] write. “Preparing food can easily involve the use of specialized equipment and techniques, a craft that men can be proud of their prowess in.”

    Cooking, they speculate, has become manly—more of a leisure activity than a chore, and one that can involve flaming-hot meats, no less.

    Are the underlying facts correct? Maybe. I didn’t read the actual study and likely wouldn’t know how to judge it if I had. I am ready to believe that women generally get stuck doing more work than men do.

    But this article’s tone disturbs me. Men either turn into political reactionaries, or they shirk their chores. Except for cooking, but that’s just because it doesn’t really count as a chore. Men must be really bad people. Add to that the title and ledes of the piece, which I realize the author might not have any control over: “Emasculated Men Refuse to Do Chores—Except Cooking” and “When their manhood is threatened, men react by doing less housework. The only exception? Meal preparation.” (And the assumption is that women spouses earning more than their men spouses equates to “emasculation.”)

    If the study had shown that men who earn less than their spouses in fact do more of the chores, I suspect the author of that article (or perhaps the authors of the study? it’s not always clear where the voice of the one begins and that of the others commence) would find a way to show that it’s really because men are doing something underhanded.

    Maybe I’m wrong on the last point. If the study shows what Khazan says it shows, then I guess it shows that and if it didn’t, maybe she’d report on it differently. I don’t read her articles all that much to know how her other writing is.


    • The same question always comes up for me when talking about men and women and housework. What is included in housework? Does it include working on the lawn? What about home repair? Car maintenance and repair? If these are not included as housework, then I would not be surprised to see women as appearing to do more housework than their husbands.


      • I’ve also wondered–and this kind of indirectly goes to Veronica’s point about how hard one’s work job might/mightn’t be–how many of these “emasculated” men are working and for how many hours? The study (via the article) seems to talk about both unemployment and employment-but-earning-less-than-the-spouse. But I could see someone working long hours and still not earning as much as his spouse.


    • — Speaking as the forum’s token feminist (she says with a smirk), this article is total crap and utterly unscientific and complete garbage and I feel stupider having read it.


      The Cassinos speculate that being out-earned by their wives threatens mens’ masculinity, so they react by doing less cleaning, a stereotypically feminine task. We can imagine these men thinking, “She might earn all the money, but I’m not going to do dishes,” Dan Cassino told me.

      How the fuck do they know this? What kind of random-ass speculation did they dig out of their asses to come up with this?

      OMG this is not how to do social science!!!!! Nor is it how to do feminism!!!!!

      There are so many obvious confounders. To start with, class and income. They are measuring relative income between men and women. However, there is a class component in this, inasmuch as the economic downturn hit working class men harder than middle-class (and up) men. Thus, one would expect working-class men to be overrepresented among the “earning less than their wives” cohort. Did they control for this?

      (I guess I should read the study, but whatever. I’m gonna play my “pontificating on the internet” card. Anyway, I doubt it.)

      The point is, the willingness to do chores is the sort of thing I would expect to vary according to class. Thus to find that it varies according to relative income is expected behavior, which perhaps reveals a kind of sexism among the working class, but that is different from saying their “masculinity is threatened” and thus they are being petty.

      Furthermore, income level does not necessarily track hard work. Some of these cases are perhaps women doing 9-5 white collar work, where the man earns less, but works more hours in a more difficult job. In such a case, it seems fair that the man would do less housework. He is exhausted. She is not.

      Look, there is an imbalance in housework. Myself, I suspect that this does arise from sexism. Furthermore, I believe there is a pretty big batch of lazy-ass, deadbeat men who women are better off without. Likewise, I believe that “toxic masculinity” plays a role in all of this. There is a “masculine role” that men are expected to play. Part of that role is as “breadwinner.” Men who fail to meet this requirement often do feel “emasculated.” This seems true. (And there is research supporting this — no links, I played my “pontificating on the internet” card.)

      But truth matters. Good science matters. This article is crap.


        • — Unless he is sufficiently alpha, in which case his masculinity is not in question and he can freely do some housework. Of course, a true alpha makes $$$$$ in finance and will simply hire someone to do it, while showering his wife with jewelry and sex. (I’m still holding out for a true alpha.)

          You were being ironic, yes?


          • “You were being ironic, yes?”

            Yes :)

            My own housework breakdown was this when I was married:

            Yard work-me (except for mulch spreading which was both)
            Cooking-me (I was better at this)
            I did help a bit on dusting/vacuuming though, but frankly, I did and still do, suck at it. I also paid all the bills and did the taxes, etc.


            • Bathrooms: me.
              Yard work: n/a (we rent an apartment)
              Shoveling snow: usually me, or my landlady’s daughter or grandson.
              Dusting/vacuuming: My wife does.
              Cooking: me, but my wife is super understanding when I don’t want to do anything extravagant and in those cases is game either to have simple stuff (ramen or canned stuff) or to order.
              Bills: I “manage” them, but we pay 50/50, except my wife pays the health insurance premiums. (I have it through her work). I pay Netflix because even though it’s for both of us, I’m the only one who uses it. She earns about 20% more than I do (and works a helluva lot harder and more hours, too).

              ETA: Laundry: Used to be me. Now we drop it off and one source of stress is thereby eradicated. (But my social anxiety creeps in when I have to pick it up….dealing with people is hard for me.)


      • You make excellent points. I want to add a bit.

        You say

        Men who fail to meet this requirement often do feel “emasculated.”

        You could also describe these men as “depressed” or as feeling “useless”. That doesn’t match up with enthusiastically pitching in to work.

        The “precarious masculinity” theory posits not that men will refuse to do housework because they see that as feminine, but that when they do so, they will rebalance themselves with something aggressive, such as playing a FPS or kicking the dog or something.

        But the thing about housework that I find most memorable is when a lesbian friend shared with me about her own housework conflict with her partner (and spouse). It’s about the imbalance that occurs when one partner thinks the kitchen floor needs to be scrubbed with a toothbrush, but the other says, “It’s not worth the effort”. This appears to play out along the exact lines that it would in a opposite sex household. So maybe it’s less about gender than we thought?


        • — I suspect it will happen to some degree in every household. It certainly happens in queer co-ops. That said, it is also definitely gendered.

          Which is not to totalize gender. But it plays a big role.


          • I was thinking something along the lines of Dr. Jay’s theory a little as well, because it’s pretty applicable to my and my wife’s arrangement. If you were to create a list of all the things we both agree need to be taken care of in our lives, I’m confident that I do more than my fair share. Where we run into issues though, is mostly about stuff that only she thinks is necessary. For example, she would say i don’t carry my weight with respect to cleaning the kitchen or the bathroom. The thing is, I don’t mind cleaning either. What i mind, or what i refuse to do, is clean them prior to them needing to be cleaned. Which means that I end up doing very little of either, because my wife’s tastes demand that both be cleaned before i think its necessary, she typically ends up doing it before I think it needs being done. :Likewise with vacuuming/sweeping. I do it once every week or two, and would be happy if that was the only time it was ever done. She basically thinks the used parts of our house (kitchen, family room, foyer, main bath) should be vacuumed/swept every day, or at least every other day.

            So while i agree there is some gender issues here, I wonder how much the gender issue is based on a disagreement over what needs to be done vice a disagreement over who’s job it is to do it.


    • I dunno. I’m a single, live-alone woman, so I do all the housework, all the yardwork, the marketing, the cooking. I enjoy ONE of those (cooking). (Car stuff I outsource to a mechanic: it’s cheaper to let someone else change my oil than deal with the disposal of used oil and the cleaning bill when I forget to change out of my work clothes before doing it).

      So, I dunno. I admit I’ve longed for a guy in a more “artistic” or less hours-intensive career than mine who would be willing to pick up some of the housework, but maybe that turns out not to be the case? Or maybe I’d wind up doing MORE work….. last time my brother and his family were visiting our parents, my brother took off his socks and left them on the floor in front of the tv. I commented to my sister-in-law: “Does he do that at home?” Her response was: “Yeah, but I leave the socks there until he picks them up.” The problem is I eventually hit a wall where I could not stand seeing those socks lying there and I would pick them up myself…..

      I guess my feeling is, “Couples arguing over who does more of the housework, how cute while I am over here going, ‘Okay, if I can get home by four pm, I can mow the lawn, and then maybe do the laundry, and the spaghetti sauce can cook while the laundry is going and I’m finishing the grading I didn’t get done during the day’….”


    • I’ve given some thought over this today and while I stand by what I wrote, I’ve softened a little bit. If–as could very well happen–I get laid off in the next year or so, it would make certain things hard to deal with. I’d like to think I’d do more chores and keep the place super clean (which I definitely don’t do now). But it might be very hard to get the motivation.

      Would I feel “emasculated”? I’m not sure. I dislike the idea (hovering somewhere in the background of Khazan’s article, but not explicitly stated) that loss of job or lower income should make one feel “emasculated.” I would certainly feel awkward, and my self-esteem would take a hit, and I’m sure it would aggravate any sub-clinical depression or other issues I have. But I’m not sure I’d relate that to a feeling of “emasculation.”

      I now already earn much less than my spouse. And further, we’ve pretty much agreed that her career comes first over mine. And I have no complaints; that’s the deal we made. That doesn’t feel (to me) particularly “emasculating.” I do feel certain tinges of….sadness? loss? But that has more to do with not being able to move away from Big City and back to Cherryplatte.

      And withal, while I probably do the majority of the chores, I still probably work much less than my spouse. She works extraordinarily hard and is great at her job. So maybe I’m one of those guys “stealing” time I should be devoting to chores. I’m not going to deny that. And neither will I deny that I choose to indulge or benefit from sexism of some sort in the household allocation of labor.


      • — I have a kind of “ground rule” on these topics: if all parties in the relationship are happy, then it is no one else’s business.

        Which is to say, if both you and your spouse have worked out your work/chore/etc. balance to your satisfaction, then it doesn’t matter what some random jerk on the internet feels about it — regardless if that random jerk is a feminist or a “men’s rights” douche or whatever.

        That said, there does seem to be “a thing” where (some) women are dissatisfied with their share of housework, when both she and her husband work. The story is, men see “housework” as women’s work, despite the fact that the wife might work harder and earn more. He “brings home the bacon,” while she keeps house, even if that is not what actually happens.

        Which, bullshit.

        Anyway, feminists do engage with this topic. Honestly, there seem to be quite a few women just blowing off marriage and cohabitation, cuz the available men don’t make the cut. Few women want to play “mom the sequel” to some overgrown child.

        Go girl!

        But that has nothing to do with you. Your relationship is not an abstraction. It is unique.


  2. A4: The originals sucked and so do these. Show me a frickin’ landscape!

    A6: See A4, last sentence.

    E2: Money and American Ed for Chinese is on the line biatches. Folk gonna sell out for all that sweet sweet cash.

    E5: Not wearing. Not letting my kids wear.

    H4 Who cares. It’s a drug. Lemme use it as I see fit, and all the other ones too.


  3. A1: Gosh, that piece doesn’t make me want to read anything else written or edited by this guy. And this is before I looked him up and found that the genre under discussion is essays promoting a political ideology. This was particularly idiotic:

    All truly excellent first books are autobiographical.

    Really? Even if it is about court dress from the reign of Louis XIV? That must be autobiographical to be truly excellent? The thing is, I might read a book about court dress from the reign of Louis XIV, but not if it is autobiographical (unless it was by someone who was actually there). I’ll grant some leeway for autobiography in the introduction, which I will skip, but if it seeps into the main body of the text then I am out of there.

    Of course this isn’t the sort of book he means. He means essays promoting a political ideology, and for that sort of thing autobiography can be an effective rhetorical technique, especially if aimed at an audience that doesn’t hand abstractions well. But that isn’t what he said. What he actually said is idiotic.

    I see this surprisingly often. People–often editors–are in their own little corner, and mistake this for the entire realm of letters. William Zinsser’s “On Writing Well” is beloved of college instructors, and it has some good advice (as well as some terrible advice), but it isn’t a book on writing well. It is a book on writing college papers and articles for general interest magazines well. It is beloved of college instructors because they have a vested interest in reading better college papers, and that is a worthwhile thing. But if you approach it as a book on writing well in any general sense, it falls into incoherence.

    Part of writing well is knowing what your topic is. Indeed, that is a necessary starting point. Mistake your corner for the entire world and you have failed before you begin.

    On a tangentially related topic, I noticed some years ago that anyone who identifies themselves as a “writer” actually means a writer of novels or personal memoirs. I back away and look for an exit. This might be the next Jack Kerouac, but the odds favor that this person is a bore. The person writing a book on court dress in the reign of Louis XIV is far more likely to self-identify as a historian of some sort, and I would happily enter into a conversation.


  4. WRT H1, I think that Republican politicians are in a much better position to pander to anti-vaccine voters without alienating their other constituents than their Democratic counterparts. It’s easy to cast it in the same language of “parental rights” and “religious freedom” that is already widely accepted among Republican voters, while Democrats tend to be more dismissive of both.


  5. M6: When I read “Black Enterprise” I thought of something else. Would the communications officer on Black Enterprise be white?


  6. AI: Of course someone from FEE wrote about how easy it is to write and publish a book.

    A5: Soviet Russia produced some of the most avant-garde art around in the 1920s. It was seen as being part of the Communist Revolution. This is the era that gave birth to Soviet Constructionism in theatre and Soviet Montage in film. Stalin killed most of the Soviets who encouraged the experimentation and many of the artists.

    M3: Maybe this is because I am an ornery and lefty outsider but I would rather tearn down the importance of Big Law, Consulting, the Big Tech companies, and Wall Street. Only 5 percent of American lawyers work in Big Law. There are plenty of other lawyers who do respectable and good work. Why do we consider being in Big Law and working for super-big corporations to be the brass ring? What kind of educational system would challenge this assumption on prestige? What else would it take?

    G5: The Ruth Graham article was interesting. The new face seems to be more in the Catholic vein of being truly for all life.


    • Saul Degraw: Why do we consider being in Big Law and working for super-big corporations to be the brass ring?

      What is one of Jaybird’s frequent sayings? “The only goods really worth having are positional”?

      Plus, not all want to be part of Big Law or Big Corporations; some want to be Presidents of the United States.


      • I’m a big law refugee, and when I was there I saw the firms were so focused on a “commitment to diversity” that the minority (esp. minority women) attorneys were constantly getting paraded around as recruiting tools for more minority women, who would in turn take on outsized roles doing the exact same thing. It looked to us like easy work and being treated to nice things for checking off the right boxes, but it took time away from skill-building, relationship-building and billable hours.

        Meanwhile, the stuffy white males who they evidently had enough of were not pushed into recruiting, presumably so they couldn’t scare away the limited pool of minority recruits by radiating their privilege. The problem arose when what they did behind those doors was bang out billable hours, kiss up to revenue-generating partners and generally make the firm money.

        If I had two pieces of advice for anyone going into BigLaw, the first would be to run away as fast as you can turn that white shoe prestige name into a job anywhere else. The second would be to make yourself indispensable to somebody. Contributing to a diversity statistic or making for a more colorful recruiting brochure doesn’t count.


    • Saul Degraw:
      M3: Maybe this is because I am an ornery and lefty outsider but I would rather tearn down the importance of Big Law, Consulting, the Big Tech companies, and Wall Street. Only 5 percent of American lawyers work in Big Law. There are plenty of other lawyers who do respectable and good work. Why do we consider being in Big Law and working for super-big corporations to be the brass ring?

      How much do the lawyers working in Big Law, et c., get paid relative to the others?


      • That depends on how you look at it.

        The brass ring jobs do pay a lot of money out of the gate. And I admit that with student loans, those six-figure salaries can be very enticing. What a lot of people don’t seem to understand that the exchange for those six-figure salaries is that the firm/companies usually demand as close to 24/7/365 that they can get and they can get close. From what I heard about consulting, working from 8 or 9 AM to Midnight every weeknight is not on common. The same is true for Investment Banking and often true for Big Law.

        Do you remember the story about the Bank of America intern who died after spending three or four days without rest? The dying is rare but the hours are not.

        When I was in my 20s, I worked as a legal proofreader. I once got a call to work on a Sunday. The call came the day before. I said fine but there was supposed to be a blizzard so please call me Sunday to confirm. The blizzard happened. The call happened. When I got to the location, there were young associates crashed on couches, they obviously spent the night. Who knows when they went to sleep? During the day, the partner got a call from his wife. He was supposed to be on vacation with his family but it got canceled because of a last minute deal. From what I understand, this is not uncommon. Other Big Law people told me that their vacations have consisted of three all-nighters with going home at 5 or 6 during the rest of the week or something similar.

        There are plenty of lawyers in small or medium sized firms that make good money but it takes a while to get there.


        • I considered law school about twelve years ago. I was doing doc review for a big downtown firm at the time. I took a pass because I looked at the economics and realized that it only made sense if you got that biglaw job right out of school and spent the next few years paying off the student loans. And that biglaw is a hellish environment. This was a couple of years before the crash. I felt very good about my decision when the crash came.

          It is much worse today. Twelve years ago my analysis was that it didn’t make sense for me, but I was pushing forty years old, and that it would make sense for someone ten or fifteen years younger. I have since revised that assessment. Now I think it only makes sense if you either get into an HLS school or get a full ride, at which point you are only risking opportunity costs.


    • I’ll also say, you can’t have what you, Saul, want – a modern equitable society with material prosperity and a sizable government sector engaged in both regulation and wealth distribution – without Big Law.


  7. H2: I understand the singular of “data” is not “anecdote,” but:

    I had terrible, terrible sinus problems as a child. There were maybe three weeks out of the entire year I was NOT stuffed up. Always had to carry tissues. Got lots of ear infections and sinus infections. My dentist advised my parents to get me orthodontia.

    After that? I’m now to the point where I’m maybe stuffed up a week out of the year, and I don’t have to carry tissues. I don’t get more than one sinus infection per year, and usually fewer than that. And my current dentist has talked about a “sinus-tooth” link – I had terrible tooth pain with a sinus infection 2 years ago, I thought one of my teeth was failing, but his conclusion after examination was no, it was just my sinuses.

    Granted, it COULD have just been “getting older and developing a better immune system” but I was 12, 13, and 14 when I had braces. Also, one of my uncles got braces as an adult on the advice of his ENT – apparently sometimes messed-up teeth can lead to messed-up sinuses, or so this guy hypothesized.


  8. G1 link is to the biomonitoring one again, instead of the role of women in the National Security establishment (which I would very much like to read)


    • And this was the question that Clinton unfairly knew in advance:

      Should Ohio and the 30 other states join the current list and abolish the death penalty?

      Clinton knew this question was going to be asked!
      And Bernie didn’t!

      She had time to prepare her answer, and he had to improvise, as to whether he supports or opposes the death penalty!
      He had to think about it, right there without time in advance to decide!

      My God, the unfairness!

      You are right, the Democratic Party officials were blatantly favoring a member of their party over an outsider.


      • It’s completely unfair to assume that a presidential candidate would have thought about a major political controversies and have a coherent position on it. Fortunately for our great nation, the Republican Party is standing firm against this kind of namby-pamby elitism.


            • It doesn’t bother me; it just goes to show that, as they say, politics ain’t beanbag and never has been. That was the same election, by the way, in which George Will commented on how well Reagan did in the debate without revealing that he’d been one of Reagan’s coaches.


          • Mike:

            That is a slightly different question. We are talking about the DNC that swore from the start of the process that they were neutral and didn’t favor Hillery, Sanders or the other guy. Yet as things played out over the course of the process it became more and more clear that they were behind Hillary from the start. The info from these emails adds to the picture that the DNC was never an honest broker and the Berner’s were right all along.


            • You believed them? Of course they favored a candidate who was both more electable and a genuine member of their party. For the same reasons, the RNC favored pretty much everyone else over Trump; they were just too incompetent to do anything about it.


              • Of course I didn’t believe Debbie Wasserman or Donna Bazile. They are politicians and Dems. I just thought their lies had some limit. I mean if the Dems want to lie to their own folks and discourage them, that’s fine with me.


              • Mike, Mike.

                Come on. You know how this works.

                When a Republican lies, it’s just a way of conveying an emotional truth. It’s more of a misstatement, a slip of the tongue to be disregarded because we all know what he really meant. We ought to minimize the importance of the lie, recognizing that it was forgivably deployed in the pursuit of the greater good of fundamental moral right.

                When a Democrat lies, it’s an element of a larger sinister plot to subvert democracy so as to replace our legitimate leaders with arrogant elites intent on corrupting our cultural fabric, and a grave moral outrage that demands being called out.

                I mean… Everyone knows this. Are you new here?


      • Let me dig further, Chip. Do you think it’s ok if a head of a party coordinates with a candidate during the primaries? Or a journalist forwards questions to a party leader? How many questions would be too many for your taste? Or does it have to be the “gotcha” questions? Does it not bother you if more ordinary questions go through the media to the party to a single candidate?

        When you were in school, you knew generally what was going to be on a test. But wouldn’t it have helped if you got a copy of the test in advance? If you did, wouldn’t you feel a little guilty looking at it, knowing that it would give you an advantage? Sure, the class material had been about the state capitals, but if you knew that North and South Dakota were going to be on the test, wouldn’t it have made things easier for you? It appears that the party official had scanned the questions and singled out the one that they were most nervous about for the candidate. It’d be a lot easier going into a test knowing that the teacher had given the material to someone else, who had reviewed it and told you what the trickier questions were, right?

        Would you have a problem if one of the candidates in the general election debates had been given the questions beforehand? Where’s your line – or is it simply that you’re not going to give notme a point?


        • Jesus.
          Like the debates were a test or something.
          What, if you freeze frame at 5:06, you will see the secret answers written on Hillary’s palm?
          What about the unknown tester on the grassy knoll?

          Debate “questions” are by design softball openings for candidates to state their position.
          If Bernie didn’t have a prepared answer for “Do you support or oppose the death penalty?” then he shouldn’t be allowed to run for student body president much less the Presidency.

          But to be charitable here, let me rephrase the question so it isn’t so much like Gateway Pundit-meets-dudebro-WATB:
          Is it appropriate for the party establishment to play favorites among candidates?

          No, it isn’t.

          But then again, if you aren’t a party member, then what’s it to you?
          This is our club, and we get to run it the way we want.

          Heck, we’re Democrats! Donna Brazile can just walk into the mens room and do her business if she wants. Thats how we roll.


              • Right now, I don’t think people are too upset. The primary is over and there are more important things.

                But yeah, this is a breach. If we didn’t care that candidates had questions prior to debates, we’d give them the questions. This shouldn’t have happened. It’s more of a “How do we prevent this from happening in the future” sort of thing than a “Lock her up” sort of thing, but it’s a thing.

                Also helps confirm suspicions that the DNC (or at least important personnel) wasn’t really neutral, a statement which draws responses of both “How dare you say that” and “Of course not, Sanders isn’t even a Democrat.” (I’m actually sympathetic to the latter argument.)


                • I’ve never bought the idea that the DNC should be some totally impartial actor, because it’s basically impossible, and this is really not a big deal in any absolute sense.

                  It was also, however, stupid. I don’t see how the ridiculously trivial benefits could possibly have outweighed the rather less trivial risks.


          • Chip,
            Well, you fucking say that. But you don’t know half the crap that Hillary Clinton pulled in the primary to “win” over Bernie, who had more voters to vote for him.

            When there’s literal jailtime in the mix because of the level of illegal activities (I know a Clinton Operative, mind), then everyone’s entitled to care.


    • G1 is a must read! This:

      The comments suggested that, even after decades of notable missteps and self-criticism in dealing with complex and unfamiliar cultures, too many senior national security thinkers are still proceeding as though policy can be made blind to cultural and social influences—gender-based or otherwise.

      Quite frankly worries me that the people at the helm are too busy staring at the destination, and ignoring signs that the ship is coming apart.


      • This is an issue that I’ve raised with my acquaintance that works expat for that The Company that is located in Virginia

        It takes a life for the expats in The Company to understand the culture, the traditions and the nonverbal cues. And then stateside guys and gals, for whom TexMex food is being aware of other cultures, just ignore everything because of course they know better.

        And thus we walk from one blunder to the next


        • I wish I could say that it’s uncommon for decision makers to ignore the guidance of human intelligence in the mix, but it’s a problem that transcends organizations & cultures.

          It’s one thing to go against the recommendations of the boots on the ground because there is a larger, strategic goal at play. It’s something else though if it’s done because a person has just decided that since they are in a position to make a decision, clearly they are much smarter than the people feeding them information, and the opinions of those people can be safely ignored (because if they were so smart, they’d be making decisions, not gathering intelligence).

          The way you tell the difference is the frequency with which such nuanced recommendations are ignored.


        • Depends.

          If the intelligence provided is, say, the number of tank battalions ready to deploy, then the gender of the reporter is unlikely to be informative.

          But if we are talking about the networks of female sympathizers and fighters that ISIS can tap, and the possible motivations behind those women, despite the treatment the men of ISIS subject such women to, then the insights of female assets in the middle east is worthy of considering as unique & valuable.


          • It is a matter of salience. No one wants all the facts. There are too many. They want the important facts. Furthermore, when we are dealing with human actors, we want to understand motivations, goals, etc. We often frame events as narratives, with motivated actors pursuing their interests.

            So indeed, those with a different life experience will often notice salient points that others might miss, just as I can observe a social interaction in my social space and notice subtext that might go over the head of someone less familiar with the specific language and behaviors of my peers.

            It’s not just gender, all though gender is a big one. It is many things.


            • “It’s not just gender, all though gender is a big one. ”

              Meaning: Yes, we should consider comments from a woman differently than we’d consider comments from a man, simply because she is a woman.


              • Why are you acting like this is something that is abnormal?

                The whole thing is context dependent. Let’s say you got two Mechanical engineers, one comes from an automotive background, one from an industrial. Both can help you design a production machine, but one will have better insight into the problem.


                • “Why are you acting like this is something that is abnormal?”

                  Because I grew up in the 1980s and 1990s, when “stop treating me differently just because I’m a woman” was the rallying cry of feminism, and it seemed (and seems) pretty sensible to me.

                  “Let’s say you got two Mechanical engineers, one comes from an automotive background, one from an industrial. Both can help you design a production machine, but one will have better insight into the problem.”

                  Interesting. Tell me more about how I can just ignore a woman’s statements, discount them entirely, recognize that they’re probably wrong from the get-go, simply because we’re talking about Man Stuff that she doesn’t know anything about.


                  • If a woman tries to tell you that blue balls don’t exist, when you know for a fact that they do, then yeah, she might not know what she’s talking about.

                    Man Stuff.

                    Ditto if a guy wants to blather about his knowledge of PMS (confirmation bias, kiddos).


                  • DD,
                    You don’t treat them differently because they’re a woman. You do recognize that because they’re a woman, they may have learned some things you never will (eg childbirth).

                    If I ever ask you about how to change a tire, that’s something I expect you to know more about than I do.

                    Treating knowledge-holders with respect is “treating people the same regardless of who they are.”


                    • If a person’s lived experience is relevant to a discussion, then sure.

                      But when people write things like “[t]he embarrassing prevalence of the perception that gender inclusion is window-dressing needs to be a priority for national security leaders to root out like racism or any other form of prejudice”, it doesn’t sound like they’re talking about lived experience being relevant to the solution of a problem. It sounds like they’re talking about “too few women, get more”.

                      Indeed, the article goes on to say “Our survey reinforced a disheartening aspect of this year’s national conversation about gender: how quickly personal experience takes the place of research.” Which is deployed in a “binders full of women” sense, but it also shows that despite the article writers’ going on about how it’s not a numbers game, in the end, it actually is. Too few women, get more.


                      • DD,
                        Nobody wants the fucking research, dear. The research tells everyone that liberal ideas (like men and women are equal) are full of shit.

                        Neverless, we do have data on how to get women into positions of power. Got reams of it from the Arab Spring.

                        Of course, expecting a pundit to actually do research is an exercise in futility.


                      • First, I am signing on to Kolohe’s criticism that the survey doesn’t have enough respondents to form an accurate picture.

                        Second, I believe the point that passage is making is that if there aren’t enough women in the mix, you can’t get any perspective from their lived experience. In addition, if you do add more women to the mix, but are not willing to listen to opinions rooted in that lived experience, then the women are just window dressing to meet the numbers.

                        So it’s not just about adding more women, but also recognizing that they may have unique perspectives that are worthy of attention.


      • I am somewhere between underwhelmed and whelmed, having read it twice and skimmed the report on which the post is based.

        First of all, her sitrep on the state of the establishment is based on interviews of 12 people. Not twelve from each directorate, or twelve from each agency, but twelve from the entire government and goverment adjacent establishment. 12 very important people, and many of which one could probably individually identify, given that there were 7 men, 5 women, 7 Democrats, 5 Republicans, and a complete job title list. (All of which have had a least two different jobs within that establishment)

        But 12 people. About half of which probably haven’t been inside the government for the past 8 years. That is supposed to give a complete readout of what the government is or is not thinking about.

        As for the merits of the more concrete action items, fine. As she says, a lot of it is obvious (we did learn ‘you gotta include the female population in your plans’ in COIN 101). And treating diversity as a numbers exercise is indeed a mistake. (Though she seems naive that people don’t do the exact same thing with race if they are doing it with gender).

        But there’s a lot of good idea fairy here toom What frustates me when wearing my old action officer hat is that the poobahs can say ‘you need to get women involved in the conflict resolution process’, and I’ll say back, ‘ok, how?’

        Or more likely ‘no s***’, because I am on the FSO side of things, a country and cultural expert and this is memo that should be titled ‘stuff I already know’

        I’m not going to dispute her empirical data on how involving women improves conflict resolution success, except to say I hope she actually has casualty *and* the casual arrow in the correct direction. Because if you don’t, you’re just cargo culting which is worthless at best, and at worst, makes things worse. There’s also the interesting juxtapostion of the gender imbalance in Pakistan being a cause for conflict, while the whole pardigm she working off of came out of an international conference in China – home of one of the more notable gender imbalances worldwide, but not a source of violent conflict (yet)

        There’s also the overall question begging on national security that takes for granted some degree of R2P – at least that conflict zones anywhere represent a security threat to the US via terrorism. A piece of conventional wisDom since 2001 that’s well overdue for a closer examination.


        • kolohe,
          read some of what’s been written about Eritrea and Columbia — women who escaped traditional female roles into being military — now have to deal with demilitarization…


          • Such reading is no doubt immensely useful for people whose main portfolio is fixing those problems.

            But left inadequately answered is whether or not senior govt execs need to do such a deep dive, and left completely unanswered is the question of whether or not the US govt should be in that biz at all.


  9. M5 really doesn’t go anywhere. The author notes that her job involves dealing with people, and that means dealing with stupid comments. What does she think the medical profession should do? Higher-ups tell her to treat a situation with sensitivity – of course they do; they’re not going to seek out conflict. Anyone who’s worked retail knows that some people are going to say dumb or offensive things. Doctors are in the same boat as sales clerks in that regard, except they’re going to be dealing with people at their worst moments.

    The author expects people to be understanding to her, to meet her expectations. Her experience is showing her that that’s not happening. So does she change her expectations, or try to understand where they’re coming from? No, she writes an article complaining about them.


    • The man-ups are great! Thankyouthankyou.

      I can imagine some of your friend’s paintings. Particularly for some reason the Raft : s/he’ll have to do the fur all waterlogged and bedraggled (no blood in Judith, assuming your friend is doing the one in the Barberini, so no stuffing spilling out of the teddy :)


      • In partial fairness to Krugman, the way Comey handled this was bullshit. I think attributing it it partisanship is dumb, but subtweeting the Weiner investigation in the letter so the details could leak out over the course of the afternoon was not remotely cool.


        • I’m quite ready (due to my partisan biases) to agree that Comey may have handled this improperly but he did testify to these issues under oath and per the law if there’s a material change to his testimony he’s obligated to disclose it. So institutional ass covering at worst, I suspect.

          Also, unless the new emails have something like Hillary’s recipe for live baby stew or something I don’t see this moving the needle very much.


          • I don’t have a tremendous problem with sending the letter.

            I do have a real problem with being a stickler about discussing the details of one ongoing investigation while discussing the details of another ongoing investigation, right before the election. All the stuff that leaked about Weiner should have been there from the start, and if Comey didn’t know it was going to leak, he’s a complete idiot.


    • I think the coalescing story is this:

      1) When investigating Weiner, they went through his and his wife’s emails (thousands) and found a few (three, apparently? some small number) to Huma FOR Clinton’s review (not from or to Clinton, so never passed through her server) that Huma may or may not have printed out for Clinton. (Not nefariously, but in keeping with Clinton’s known preference for paper when possible).
      2) As these are emails covered under the scope of the Congressional investigation, the FBI has to look at them and verify they’re not classified or anything (because while the email was to Huma, the content was intended for Hillary. As in ‘Huma, can you have HRC check these documents?” type of thing), so the FBI apparently has to notify Congress that “Woops, we got a few more”.
      3) The GOP head of the committee called that “re-opening the investigation” and the word “email” was used.
      4) Fecal matter hit the fan everywhere as Comey’s letter was leaked. Democrats mad it was leaked during voting proper, the media mad because just enough as been leaked to make them really want to know but ALSO enough has been leaked to make them wary that the GOP congressmen is playing games again. And Republicans, apparently, because HRC isn’t already in jail (Trump’s spin).

      Which is already making the “OCTOBER SURPRISE” story morph into the now familiar “Nothing happened here” story, which is why Krugman is losing his mind.

      One the one hand, this feels like Comey just dropped a major bombshell but neatly hid any details, so that it’d have maximum speculation and minimum information until after voting was done. The FBI, in general, will actively hold stuff like this off until after an election in order to avoid swaying votes. On the other hand, he may have been legally required to notify the House Committee as soon as it was found.

      On the third hand, he couldn’t have taken a few hours to have some actual information given he’s been in Washington long enough to know his notification would be leaked with giant amounts of spin within seconds of being received?

      The FBI has so far disclosed that these were not withheld, they didn’t pass through Clinton’s server, and that Clinton was neither the recipient nor the sender, which makes their inability to include these things in the certainly-to-be-leaked notification…puzzling.


      • Question for the many lawyers here… How do the rules for legally-obtained evidence work here? It appears the FBI was examining the contents of a laptop looking for evidence of a crime committed by person X. In the course of that, they find files that may be evidence of a different crime committed by person Y. Is it a matter of “oh, lucky us!” or do they have to get some sort of court order in order to open the files or what?


        • According to The Times,

          Law enforcement officials have begun the process to get court authority to read the emails,


          How soon they will get that is unclear, but there is no chance that the review will be completed before Election Day,

          So take anything you read about their contents before then with a Utah lake’s worth of salt.


          • Comey is not coming out of this looking so great.

            You don’t get to be FBI director without being a politician, so I can’t believe this didn’t have exactly the effect he wanted.

            I do love how he defended it by saying it was necessary to release the fact that they had no information, but might one day, because the election was so close. Because DOJ procedure is to do the exact opposite (go completely dark) when an election is so close.

            Krugman’s kinda got a reason to go ballistic here. This was a ballsy self-insert into the election, and I’m seeing pushback from some surprising people. (Not Trump, clearly, who has already moved on to claiming this is worse than Watergate).


            • Comey is not coming out of this looking so great.

              No, he isn’t. The politics here is hard to figure, actually, since his action obviously damages Hillary directly, Obama indirectly, but it primarily hurts Comey himself for so irresponsibly politicizing the whole thing. His motivations remain opaque to me. Has he provided a plausible rationale for going public with this?


              • Do you think that it might be some vague concept of “principle”? He finished his investigation in July by saying that Hillary was “reckless” or something but he wasn’t going to press charges and then when new information comes to light, he freaks out and says “OKAY! ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!” or something?

                HA! I’m just kidding.

                He probably saw some real polls and realized which way the wind is blowing.


                • If he’s offering a quid, he’s ain’t doin it like a pro. Hillary is still a 4:1 favorite to win, even with the recent dip.

                  Personally, I put more stock in the ClintonFoundationGate! emails (you know, the ones suggesting Bill actually DID engage in the quid like a real pro…) hurting her chances than Comey implying he’s “reopening” the ServerGate! investigation.

                  Either way, tho, she’s a bad closer with a lot of baggage. So possibilities of her losing this “sure thing” remain open and wide-ranging.


                  • I wonder who outside of the Beltway media and dedicated political fans (like us here) give a crap about the emails.

                    I saw a pouting post by Tyler Durden whining about how Facebook, Twitter, and whatever don’t show the emails “trending”; he seems to think its a giant conspiracy. It doesn’t seem to occur to him that no one cares.

                    And why should we? No can actually say what the “scandal” is, unless its that she used a nonsecure server, which we’ve already known, and others did the same.

                    So whats new here?


                    • The fact that this is Weiner-related alone should generate some eyeballs. Given the attention it us getting on Twitter, it’s genuinely weird the lack of attention it is allegedly getting on Facebook (even within “Politics”) though I can think of some benign explanations pretty easily (involving the word weiner).

                      As for whether people care about the issue writ large, I suspect it has contributed to her underwater popularity.


                    • Chip,

                      I wonder who outside of the Beltway media and dedicated political fans (like us here) give a crap about the emails.

                      I think – and I mean this with all due respect – that perhaps your own insularity prevents you from appreciating just how widely Hillary is disliked by the general public, to such an extent that anything even hinting at corruption confirms their presuppositions about her. So, in the specific, I agree with you (about the email-related specifics), but I disagree in general: almost everyone is paying attention to her emailgate problems, one way or the other.


                      • I cop to being a partisan, and proudly so and with the Clintons, it is a big part of my political journey.
                        I was a rabid Reaganite when Bill was elected in 1992, (listening to Rush dramatcially declare after the inauguration, Day One of Occupied America).
                        By then end of his second term, I was a completely disgusted ex-Republican, embarrassed for the clownish antics of baying mob of Clinton hysterics.

                        I just think a lot of the Clinton-hate is ginned up by the media itself in a neverending pursuit of scandal and pageviews.

                        Ask a nonpolitical person what they don’t like about Hillary and you will get some confused stammering, or Fox chyron retreads, or some mumbling about emails. Its a self-fueling feedback loop.

                        Again, whats the scandal, and why does anyone here care?


                          • No, but a lot of non-Fox outlets have enthusiastically pushed Clinton corruption stories over the years, often with insufficient or wrong evidence. It’s not like the New York Times has covered itself with glory over the email thing at any step of the way, and we saw the pattern repeat itself as the Times and a bunch of other outlets ran with Chaffetz’ spin on Comey’s inexcusably vague letter, and then spend most of the weekend walking the story back and run with endless leaks from the FBI about what’s going on.

                            Somehow this stuff all becomes too good to check when the Clintons are involved, even when the story is being shopped by a flagrant partisan weasel like Chaffetz.


                                  • I will admit to a substantial degree of frustration with this line of argument, because recursive questions about “who cares” about the Clintons’ alleged malfeasance have been playing a key role in sustaining perceptions of their untrustworthiness through my entire adult life.

                                    Also, if the press were using remotely similar standards across the board, Krugman’s much-mocked suggestion that Comey was motivated by partisan bias and a desire to tip the election to Trump would be the conventional wisdom.


                                      • Just as a point of order, didn’t ask, “Who cares?” he asks, “[W]hy does anyone here care?”

                                        If the reason people here care is because, well, people elsewhere care and the media care, that’s exactly the sort of thing that bugs me about all this.


                                        • I wonder who outside of the Beltway media and dedicated political fans (like us here) give a crap about the emails. {…}

                                          It doesn’t seem to occur to him that no one cares.

                                          It’s not clear to me that nobody cares about these things. In fact, in at least a general sense, I think people do (even if not enough to vote for Trump). Thus, I commented.


                                    • I go back to this, pillsy: Why would the GOP go all-in on Bill Clinton’s corruption right from the get-go if they didn’t think (from they’re pov, mind!) that he was fundamentally corrupt?

                                      Personally, as tired as you are of anti-Clinton campaigns in the media and by the GOP, I’m tired of liberals self-servingly reducing the entire issue to nothing more than contentless expressions of pure partisanship. If nothing else, such a reduction only fosters the very thing it intends to eliminate.


                                      • Why would the GOP go all-in on Bill Clinton’s corruption right from the get-go if they didn’t think (from they’re pov, mind!) that he was fundamentally corrupt?

                                        There’s no question in my mind that most Republicans think that Bill Clinton is fundamentally corrupt. I just don’t see what that has to do with my complaint, because I don’t think that the New York Times, centrist journalists and pundits, et c. are all Republicans.

                                        Personally, as tired as you are of anti-Clinton campaigns in the media and by the GOP, I’m tired of liberals self-servingly reducing the entire issue to nothing more than expressions of pure partisanship.

                                        Where did I say that the issue is nothing more than an expression of pure partisanship?


                                        • The word “alleged” up there is probably doing less work than I thought. Nevertheless, what you didn’t say upthread is that some of the accusations of ClintonCorruption! aren’t baseless.


                                          • I didn’t say it because it’s not obviously true, because Clinton corruption is such an amorphous beast, and the vast majority of the stuff I’m familiar with that isn’t baseless is stuff where there’s nothing illegal has been proven, or even necessarily alleged, but the Clintons didn’t do a good job avoiding the appearance of impropriety. It looks to me like the Clintons do not actually give a shit about the appearance of impropriety, which I think is understandable given their history, but is also not a good thing. It is in fact a bad, toxic thing.

                                            That being said, it’s also hard to shake the impression that “creating the appearance of impropriety” is taken much, much more seriously when the Clintons do it than when anybody else does it. It’s taken infinitely more seriously when the Clintons do it than when Trump does it, that’s for goddamned sure.


                                            • It looks to me like the Clintons do not actually give a shit about the appearance of impropriety

                                              Agreed, they don’t give a shit about that.

                                              which I think is understandable given their history

                                              What history is that: a history of not giving a shit, or a history of being hectored about actual impropriety?

                                              but is also not a good thing. It is in fact a bad, toxic thing.

                                              Yes, it’s toxic, but it’s more than that too. It’s bad politics which inclines towards the belief in bad policy. Consider this: pretty much the only scandals to plague the Obama* admin are somehow connected to Hillary: politicizing the Arab Spring, Egypt, Benghazi, ServerGate!.

                                              Add: Look, it’s no different than the Bush Admin lying is into invading a Iraq in 03: the bare “facts” permit disputes, but the overarching approach was fundamentally corrupt.

                                              *{{This space reserved for Kolohe’s rebuttal while acknowledging I may be overstating the case in either direction.}}


                                                • On the other hand, pillsy, when you continue to site “legality” as the sole condition of corruption, you give the game away. :)

                                                  Look, I don’t like Hillary’s politics. I’ve said as much repeatedly here at the OT. But I’m not defending that view in this thread as much as a view that liberals, and partisan Dems, seem incapable of conceptualizing: that Hillary’s politics is fundamentally corrupt irregardless of “legality”. It’s part of a larger critique that animates Trumpism and radical conservatism (think Tea Party, here) generally.

                                                  So the only thing I’m committed to in *this* thread is that lots/most of liberals are making a category error when they criticize conservative criticisms of Hillary.


                                                        • Again, you’re missing the point by getting overly legalistic pillsy.

                                                          I don’t mean that as an admonishen, btw. Keep doing what you’re doing. I hope it works out and the good guys win.


                                                      • OK, so…where is the corruption?

                                                        I’m really, seriously curious here. What is the source of your belief that the Clintons are corrupt?

                                                        Not just wrong or incompetent, but corrupt?

                                                        I’ve asked 3 times, and all I’ve gotten so far are code words (Benghazi!) or vague allusions- “she politicized it”.

                                                        But so far nothing that seems improper or corrupt.

                                                        And for what its worth, this was the story all through the 1990s, with Whitewater, Travelgate, Rose Law Firm, Vince Foster, and even Monica Lewinsky- it just seemed like every Massive! Incredible! Scandal! when you looked at it closely, just melted away like cotton candy in a rainstorm.

                                                        It was all just smoke and rumor and suggestive cryptic allusions.

                                                        But something clearly is eating at people who keep this drumbeat up. I just want to find out what it is.


                                                        • OK, so…where is the corruption?

                                                          I’m really, seriously curious here. What is the source of your belief that the Clintons are corrupt?

                                                          Source? I thought we were talking politics here, not academic theories? :)


                                                          • If I had to guess at the existence of corruption, assuming corruption, I’d say that Libya happened because of Saudi money.

                                                            Assuming that Obama wasn’t lying when he said that Libya was his greatest regret, I’m guessing that that is why he’s not pulling a Nixon on Comey.

                                                            Assuming corruption, of course.


                                                  • Stillwater:
                                                    On the other hand, pillsy, when you continue to site “legality” as the sole condition of corruption, you give the game away. :)

                                                    Set legality aside: there was still nothing corrupt about Benghazi. Mistakes are not necessarily corrupt, and none of the substantiated charges around what happened around Benghazi showed any sign of being anything other than mistakes.

                                                    Look, I don’t like Hillary’s politics. I’ve said as much repeatedly here at the OT. But I’m not defending that view in this thread as much as a view that liberals, and partisan Dems, seem incapable of conceptualizing: that Hillary’s politics is fundamentally corrupt irregardless of “legality”. It’s part of a larger critique that animates Trumpism and radical conservatism (think Tea Party, here) generally.

                                                    So Trumpists and radical conservatives want to throw her in jail regardless of the legality of what she’s done… and liberals are the ones that are making a category error?


                                                    • So Trumpists and radical conservatives want to throw her in jail regardless of the legality of what she’s done… and liberals are the ones that are making a category error?

                                                      We’re gonna see how that plays out going forward, pillsy. Not Hillary getting thrown in jail, of course, but whether you’re right in thinking that a socalled “matter of fact” will decide how policy and politics evolve moving forward. I don’t think it will, at least in terms of liberal’s conception of what constitutes a “fact”.


                                                      • Look, your argument about what is animating Trumpism–that Hillary Clinton is corrupt independent of any sort of illegality–is simply and obviously incorrect on the face of it. Trump supporters (and quite a few anti-Trump right-wingers) don’t think she’s just another weasely Washington insider–they are very explicit about the fact that they believe she is a criminal. They could not be less ambiguous about this.

                                                        You appear to be projecting some other point of view about the way mainstream Washington politics works onto them. It’s not, in my experience, Trump supporters who view Hillary Clinton as someone who’s a practitioner of some sort of legal, commonplace, insider-ish soft corruption, it’s Sanders supporters.


                                                        • Look, your argument about what is animating Trumpism–that Hillary Clinton is corrupt independent of any sort of illegality–is simply and obviously incorrect on the face of it.

                                                          No, it’s actually a real fact. A true one. One of those real true facts.

                                                          Lots (and lots!) of people believe Hillary is corrupt.


                                                          • Lots (and lots!) of people believe Hillary is corrupt.

                                                            Lots and lots of people believe that Hillary is corrupt because they believe that she has done lots (and lots!) of illegal things. That’s the position of the Trump campaign itself (“You’d be in jail!”) and the position that is routinely and enthusiastically expressed by his supporters (“Lock her up!”)

                                                            Your argument about why Trump supporters think Hillary’s corrupt–that it’s independent of any illegality–requires us to ignore what they’re actually saying.


                                                            • Well, as I’ve said almost (but not quite!) ad nauseum, what you (and Hillary) view as standard operating procedure other folks view as fundamentally corrupt, even tho legal.

                                                              I don’t know how to say it any clearer than that, pillsy. Two different world views. Two different ideological alignments.


                                                              • Stillwater: Well, as I’ve said almost (but not quite!) ad nauseum, what you (and Hillary) view as standard operating procedure other folks view as fundamentally corrupt, even tho legal.

                                                                The problem isn’t that you are asserting the existence of that viewpoint! It definitely exists! Bernie Sanders ran a surprisingly successful primary campaign based on that worldview!

                                                                The problem is that you’re attributing that worldview to Trump supporters, in the face of all available information about their actual views.


                                      • And why would they go all-in on Obama the way they did from the get-go, if they didn’t sincerely believe he was a Kenyan-born pro-terrorist Muslim affirmative-action fraud that hates white people? It’s pretty dismissive of your fellow Americans to attribute all of that to pure partisanship.


                                      • Well to be fair, I did ask two questions, “do ordinary people care” and “does anyone here care”?

                                        The first question gets pretty meta pretty fast, so lets skip it.

                                        But for the folk here-
                                        What do you personally think the Clintons are guilty of, that is different than ordinary Washington politics?

                                        Not rumor, or innuendo or appearance, or deeply troubling questions, but what do you personally actually think they have done wrong?


                                        • What do you personally think the Clintons are guilty of, that is different than ordinary Washington politics?

                                          Isn’t that indictment enough for our purposes in this discussion, Chip? Assuming you reject the Washington politics status quo, anyway.


                                            • Pillsy,
                                              The Clintons have a matter of scale thing going on, and a “too big to fail” thing that is especially unusual.

                                              Bribery ain’t nothin’ new in washington, and neither is blackmail.

                                              Clinton ain’t the only one getting bribed by folks outside the country (Saudi Arabia ain’t the only one)


                                        • Chip,
                                          Well, maybe I’ll mention some of the less sensitive things.
                                          Hacking the Democratic Primary — by means of kicking Bernie Sanders off the voter rolls.
                                          Pay-to-play on a “too big to fail” basis, armtwisting to get Democratic Officials to push people into voting for her…

                                          And making compacts with both the Neoliberals and Neocon segments of the Powers that Be.

                                          That last may not be illegal, but it is unusual.


                          • She’s corrupt, because there are so many “deeply troubling questions”, about various issues that “have the appearance of impropriety” and also, there is the indisputable fact that there are headlines.

                            Headline, and chyrons and graphics that also report on the many people raising troubling questions, deeply troubling questions of appearances..

                            And the investigations! So many investigations!

                            Clearly, all these deeply troubling questions about appearances and investigations that produce headlines are evidence of corruption, and the fact that she is corrupt is adequate reason to investigate further and dutifully report about the appearance, and raise more questions.

                            Troubling questions.

                            Deeply. Troubling, Questions.


                        • I just think a lot of the Clinton-hate is ginned up by the media itself in a neverending pursuit of scandal and pageviews.

                          I don’t disagree, except in this respect: what you view as “ginned up pursuit of scandal” is actually merely “scandal” from a different pov. Lots of people think the Clinton’s method of conducting politics – a method they would probably effusively defend as “the way things get done!” – is fundamentally corrupt. So the disagreement won’t be resolved by an appeal to narrowly based “facts”. It goes quite a bit deeper than that.


                        • Chip,
                          If clinton gets elected, we have a 20% chance of World War III.
                          Russia, believe it or not, doesn’t want an unnecessary war with us.(not that Russia was behind the hack of the DNC server, mind.)

                          Clinton is on the same team that is trying to cut the left’s bullocks off (and is doing a damn good job of it). I don’t like who she’s made promises to (The Powers that Be). I don’t like what she’s been willing to do to win (some of it’s blatantly illegal).

                          Oh, and she’s trying to be “Too Big To Fail”.

                          She does pay for play like nobody else does (scale mostly). Hell, she’s such a great “I’ll do whatever you say” person, I don’t think she’s even blackmailed much.


              • Comey resigns on Monday, saying he can’t work for an administration that won’t let him do his job. No search warrant to examine the e-mails is ever issued. He trusts that Clinton would rather put the whole mess behind her than go for a Hatch Act violation.

                Remember that you read it here first.


                    • Which raises a question: If Abedin was using Wiener’s computer but under her own email account, does gummint have the right to open her emails merely on *his* (the computer’s owner) granting them permission to search and seize?


                      • If Abedin was using Wiener’s computer but under her own email account, does gummint have the right to open her emails merely on *his* (the computer’s owner) granting them permission to search and seize?

                        How would it work if it were a drug possession case in Detroit?

                        That to say: gummint is not setting a precedent here.

                        And, for the record, this doesn’t indicate that Hillary did anything wrong, if anybody did anything wrong, it was Huma, and Weiner is the bastard for not being loyal to anybody but Weiner, Colin Powell did the same thing. It’s not fair that people are smearing Clinton for something that Huma did.


                      • It sounds like there may be internal disagreements over this. Of course, the way this is all being litigated in the press in the form of dueling quotes from anonymous “senior officials” is doing a great job convincing me that Comey is running a really tight ship, let me tell you.

                        Why, one might go so far as to characterize his agency’s handling of confidential information as “extremely careless”.


                      • I’m thinking that the (theoretical) prosecution has nothing to do with Hillary but with the whole sending of various bodypart pictures to underage people and the various things that are (theoretically) prosecutable if you do that sort of thing.


                    • State’s evidence for what?

                      Why would the FBI make a deal with Weiner for emails it hasn’t even looked at, that are most likely simply copies* of the ones it’s already got?

                      *Assume you’re committing evil and storing copies of the ‘important, can’t be seen by the law emails. I think “On your husband’s laptop” is probably unlikely, and then “never deleting them” is even less likely. What IS pretty darn likely is you checked your email on your hubby’s laptop a few times, probably on your own profile, and used Outlook or something similar that downloaded all the stuff in your inbox and stored it. Thus when said laptop is seized, you have a bunch of old emails from random dates sitting on it.

                      And if you don’t know much about how Outlook and other mail clients work, if asked “Are these all your emails” you’re not likely to think that the laptop where you fired off a few answers when out of town or at home, actually holds emails. Those are on the cloud or server or whatever. You didn’t save them. You just answered some.


                        • Do you even read other people’s posts when you’re in moods like this?

                          Or do you just prefer to insinuate, without every specifying?

                          It’s like you have an aversion to actually telling people what you think.


                          • Imagine, if you will, the Clinton Foundation engaging in pay to play. Like, for real pay to play. Like, indictment level stuff.

                            Would Huma know about this? I imagine she would.

                            Now can you imagine Huma talking about this occasionally with Anthony Weiner? “We’ve got a big deal coming down! We just have to set up something and our friends will make it worth our while. We’ll have it made in the shade.”

                            Something like that. Discussions over dinner, perhaps.

                            Now Weiner knows about it.

                            If it is indictment level stuff, would the FBI find that worth trading for?


                            • Let’s imagine that you, Jaybird, are an alien. Talking to us right now.

                              How mindblowing would that be.

                              How is this ANY different than the last two years of “THIS TIME WE’LL GET HER!”. Why do you expect it to end any differently?

                              It’s like you’ve taken as a bedrock statement of reality that Clinton is clearly guilty of something, so the fact that she’s routinely accused, investigated by the most powerful offices in the land, and ends up exonerated just proves how guilty she must be, to get it past them!

                              Seriously, we can play “let’s imagine” all dang day. I just don’t understand why you’re willing to swallow, yet again, the same story and expect a different outcome?

                              But I don’t treat my imaginings as reality, especially the ones that require extra tinfoil. (Like, for instance, that the CF and the Clinton’s themselves, who have been audited over and over and over, have somehow been hiding this from the very, very, VERY large number of rich and connected people who investigate them every freaking year.).


                              • That’s not exactly what’s going on.

                                You asked me why Weiner would make a deal.
                                I gave an explanation for why he’d make a deal.

                                Perhaps he handed over the laptop without having made a deal.

                                I mean, what could he have possibly made a deal about?

                                Since we pretty much agree that Clinton has not been found guilty of anything so far, therefore, Weiner could not have been making a deal because he wouldn’t have had anything to trade.

                                He probably just handed over the laptop unwittingly.


                                • They had a warrant to search his laptop in the first place.

                                  Your deal speculation was based on a single assumption that was wrong. One of the few actual known facts, and you got it wrong.

                                  You airily speculated on a deal whose initial premise was wrong (Weiner turned over the laptop voluntarily), the primary component of the deal was not legal (“Warner gets consideration if he lets them look at Huma’s emails” — he can’t consent for a search of someone else’s property), was mooted anyways (They got a warrant)….

                                  All because you believe, deep down and without evidence, that there MUST be a big, indictable offense here and you’re happy to make up stories to support it…even though you’ve been wrong every other time this story has come up


                              • She’s guilty (not of anything particularly about the e-mail, mind).
                                FBI is currently investigating the Clinton Foundation as well, mind you.

                                She hasn’t hidden anything from the schmart guyz. They’re just either small fry (which, for all “I know someone who works for Clinton” — yeah, he’s no Koch, if you get my fucking drift) or they’re profiting from it.

                                If you knew that Clinton had illegally hacked electronic voting machines, would you release this to the public?
                                Given our current DoJ, I’d hesitate. More than likely, you’d be the person strung up for it, even if you hadn’t done it. The skillset for “able to find malfeasance” looks an awful lot like “able to hack” — and this FBI is rather known for convicting people on that basis alone.


            • morat20,
              To be more accurate, DoJ’s position is ACTUALLY to intimidate the fuck out of people to get them to NOT run for president.

              I doubt that would have worked in this case. If Hillary doesn’t win, she’s probably going to die (now, how soon after the election she kicks the bucket? That’s an interesting question…)


        • Maybe I misunderstand your question, but if they have legal authority to search and find evidence of a crime completely unrelated to their reason for searching, that’s not an obstacle to using that evidence to at trial for the unrelated crime.


          • It gets a bit more convoluted than that. Like say I have a warrant to search your belongings for, say, cocaine. Does that extend to your roommate’s locked room? Or the locked strongbox under his bed?

            Depends on the scope of the warrant. The warrant they grabbed the laptop on was for Weiner and his electronic records (emails, photos, documents, etc), so it wouldn’t extend to anyone else’s emails on that laptop. (I’m assuming this is the case because it IS being widely reported that the FBI can’t search Huma’s emails on that laptop, which really implies that the warrant was limited to Weiner specifically)

            I’m not even 100% sure that even if it’s Weiner’s personal laptop, that he can give permission to search his wife’s emails on that laptop. (I have no idea if it’s been ruled on before or not. Separate profiles and shared laptops are a thing…)


              • Figured that was going to happen. I’m not exactly an expert in that area of law, but as a laptop was shared property at some point — it’d seem akin to me trying to give cops the ability to search my roommate’s stuff.

                Especially if the cops showed up with a warrant for MY stuff specifically, and then wanted to search his stuff. Pretty sure judges would toss that out, even if I said yes.

                I’m already seeing stupidity out. “There’s 650,000 emails!”. (I’d wager my bottom dollar that there’s 650,000 Weiner emails, which seems about right for several years worth of heavy email use).

                Using the same skepticism that has has stood me in good stead for every freaking breathless “Clinton emails! THIS TIME IT’S FOR REAL PEOPLE!” hysteria, I’m gonna go on record as the following:

                It’s an Outlook ost file (or equivilant) for one ore more addresses. (She attached to her email, private or government, to check/send some email, and Outlook automatically downloaded her emails and stored them). Anything relevant is duplicates of stuff already turned over.

                This entire thing will boil down to “Huma logged into her email a few times on her husband’s laptop”. Nothing more, nothing less. She checked her email, and because of how stand-alone mail clients work, this generated a local repository of her inbox at the time.


  10. LA Times story on the Malheur acquittals; recycles some Juror 4 quotes from the Oregonian, but also has some amusing stuff from one of the defense lawyers.


  11. h1 [skepticism about vaccines]: following my usual practice of not reading the underlying study(ies), we should distinguish between “worried about vaccines,” “not sure” they (or a given vaccine) are (is) safe, “they might not be safe,” and “they aren’t safe.” I’m “not sure” a measles vaccine is safe. I think it probably is, but I’m “not sure.” In fact, those vaccines “might not be safe.” Still, I support mandatory vaccinations for measles.

    As for the partisan implications, I guess I agree with Pillsy’s comment above.:

    Republican politicians are in a much better position to pander to anti-vaccine voters without alienating their other constituents than their Democratic counterparts. It’s easy to cast it in the same language of “parental rights” and “religious freedom” that is already widely accepted among Republican voters, while Democrats tend to be more dismissive of both.


  12. Current conspiracy theory is that this isn’t about emailing classified data, but because of the Clinton Foundation being dirty. Like, really dirty. Dirty enough to say “huh, that’s pretty dirty” instead of “hey, if you don’t like how the sausage is made, move to Somalia.”

    Next week is going to get interesting.


    • I agree. The biggest hit this week to Hillary’s poll number won’t be Comey related, but the revelations! that the CF is a vehicle used to funnel millions of dollars (tens of millions, scores of millions!) into Bill’s personal account. And possible her’s too.


    • Why does no one just go with the obvious, Occam’s razor explanation?

      A woman checked her email (work or personal) or her then-husband’s laptop, which left an archive of her inbox each time she checked. (Standard mail client behavior).

      Then when the FBI were searching it for her husband’s emails, their forensic scans showed her email archives. Which since she was a Clinton aide at State, and thus her work emails are relevant to the overall State investigation, it got flagged as “We might want to check these, just in case”.

      Since they didn’t have a warrant, they didn’t check them. Given they’ve known for weeks it was there, they were clearly in no hurry to get one either.

      I mean what’s more likely? The Clinton’s have managed to evade the FBI’s investigators, forensic examiners and auditors and fooled them all, only to be tripped up because Huma stored critical documents on her idiocy-prone husband’s laptop (not even her own) — or a woman checked her email from her husband’s laptop a few times?


      • If that were the case, why did Comey do what he did?

        Is “malice on his part” the simplest explanation for that, too?

        This is just a partisan FBI head trying to destroy the Democratic candidate right before an election and it’s nothing more complicated than that?


        • If that were the case, why did Comey do what he did?

          I mean, if we’re assuming arbitrary degrees of corruption here, I’m not sure why it makes any less sense to attribute it to Comey in place of Clinton.

          Of course, the more likely explanation there appears to be that he did so to cover his ass and completely screwed up.


          • I guess we’ll see how weird the next week gets.

            On the one hand, we’ll have someone like me and/or Stillwater saying “I guess that it all turned out to be a big nothingburger after all. They were 650,000 of Weiner’s emails. Some of them were interesting, but in the ‘prurient’ sense of the word.”

            On the other hand, we’ll have Morat saying “I refuse to believe that. If that were true, which I don’t believe, we would have known about it by now. Since we did not, therefore it is not true” about whatever stories pop up.

            Let’s see what happens.


            • So you DON’T read what people say. Good to know.

              It says a lot, Jaybird, that you believe that we’ll finally find out the CF is the root of all evil and corruption based on emails Comey hasn’t been legally allowed to view, rather than the simple: A woman checked her email on her husband’s laptop, and when scanning that laptop for HIS emails, the FBI found hers and said “Better kick it over just in case” and then Comey made, at best, a really stupid call.

              That you believe those things seem equally likely. It’s like the name “Clinton” turns off your frontal lobes.


                • Well Jaybird, what does past history tell you? How many of the breathless “Clinton emails show massive corruption” stories have panned out?

                  They’ve been at bat at least monthly for two years, and haven’t had a single hit.


                    • I just realized where Jaybird’s coming from. He’s decided the Clinton’s have been being bribed through the CF — although I suspect he’s moved to second-order bribes (wherein the CF helped setup Bill’s paid speaking gigs in return for donations, because no one wants to hear Bill Clinton speak) as first-order ones are probably a little hard to swallow (both the CF and the Clinton’s own returns are heavily scrutinized, both by the IRS and private parties) and the CF keeps getting glowing reports from charity watchdogs to boot.

                      And because clearly the Clinton’s ARE somehow getting money illegally through, or from, or by, or somehow tangentially from the CF, that Huma of course knew about it. And because Huma knew about it, Weiner knows about it. Which means that either Weiner told Comey everything, or Comey knows the ‘smoking gun’ emails are hidden in Huma’s inbox on Weiner’s laptop.

                      So Comey clearly had to go public to warn us that THIS time, the Clinton is scandal is totally for real, but he couldn’t because….I’m not sure, really but there’s a reason — so instead he just sort of told Congress “We found some emails, but we don’t know what’s in them” and that was the secret code that let everyone know that Comey had the goods.

                      (Hilariously, the CF stuff he’s referencing — the pay to play stuff? It’s from hacked emails that, when read, are people internally raising the issue of perceived pay-to-play issues, which culminated in both internal and external audits.)

                      Anyways, he’s clearly borrowing Kim’s tinfoil while she’s off, so there’s not much of a point. He’s starting from the unshakeable assumption that the Clinton’s have committed multiple, indictable offenses — either directly or through the CF (bribery, etc), and so he’s just anticipating the eventual exposure.

                      The idea that, maybe, Huma used her husband’s laptop to check email, and Comey screwed up — malaciously or otherwise? I mean, possible, sure. But what are the odds when it’s known the Clinton’s are being bribed by Saudi Arabia through the CF?


                        • Since we’re speculating, here’s a fun one:

                          How old do you think that laptop is? It’s got to be the one Weiner was using this year, because the sexting scandal the warrant was issues for was, well, very recent.

                          Now I don’t replace laptops until they die, but that’s because I buy top-end laptops and nurse them until I’m forced to buy another, because good laptops are not cheap.

                          How old, I wonder, is the average laptop of someone that well off? Is it older than February 1, 2013? Did she even use it before 2/1/13?

                          We don’t know, and neither does the FBI. (Well, now that they have a warrant they can find out).

                          I think it’d be pretty ironic to find out that all those emails post-date Clinton’s tenure at State. (What, you thought they didn’t email? Huma works for the Clinton Foundation and has been a long-time aide to Clinton, before and after her time at State).

                          (Although to be honest, given the likelihood is that the ’emails’ are an archive generated by her mail client, anything undeleted in her inbox would have been downloaded. Whether that included emails past a certain date would depend on their archival settings).


                          • If they were using Outlook, does it matter how old it was?

                            I see you got there at the end. I’ll be interesting to find out what the oldest ones are.

                            Here’s a fun speculation: who was the first to notice these emails? Wasn’t it the NYPD investigating Wiener’s alleged indiscretion?

                            How many of the NYPD saw these emails?


                            • It depends on what email address she was using.

                              For instance, if it was after her tenure at State, there is no chance she had lingering State emails. (She wouldn’t have been able to connect). She might have CF or personal emails from that time period, but those are outside the scope of the FBI’s inquiry.

                              Huma, for instance, had several — she segregated her State work, her CF work, and her personal email. (That’s been reported before). Her non-CF contract work with Teneo might have been under a fourth address. (I can sympathize. I’ve got at least three email addresses, besides my work ones, for similar reasons).

                              It may be that every email on there by Huma is outside the scope of the FBI’s investigation (and their warrant, which would only be issued under the previous investigation).

                              I’ve heard state’s non-secure email systems were pretty crappy and their IT was slow and problematic. What are the odds she bothered configuring an email client for her State email when she borrowed a laptop?

                              Who knows. Again, not James Comey.


                                • Seriously, Jaybird, you need to work on your written clarity. You seem to be implying that the limited nature of warrants is some sort of legal dodge, instead of fundamental Constitutional law.

                                  You do know how warrants work, right? The FBI’s investigation — the one Comey happily leaked was reopened — was into State’s handling of classified information, not “What did Clinton email for the last decade?”


                                  • You seem to be implying that the limited nature of warrants is some sort of legal dodge, instead of fundamental Constitutional law.

                                    If you understood the intentions of the Founding Fathers, you’d know that they never intended the 4th Amendment to cover emails like the ones found by the NYPD.


                                    • This is why talking to you is a waste of time. You approach conversations with the apparent intent of obscuring your point as much as possible.

                                      It’s not trolling, but it’s not conversation either.

                                      You seem allergic to clarity, and I’m not the first person to complain about it. Why you refuse to own your opinions is beyond me.


                                      • There are people out there who hold the opinions you wish you were arguing against. None of those people are here, sadly. We chased all of them away.

                                        As it is, you’re using the arguments you wish you could use against them against me, but they don’t quite fit because I don’t hold the opinions you wish you were arguing against.

                                        As for what we’re dealing with here, I don’t know what it is. Are they emails that include ones that the FBI never saw before? Are they emails that document some seriously bad thing that happened that now, people in the NYPD have seen too?

                                        We don’t know!

                                        What I do suspect is that if the contents of these emails were made public, it’d be a shitshow detailing how the sausage is made and only the most ardent Clintonistas would be willing to call everyone else “naïve” if the information came to light EVEN IF NOTHING ILLEGAL TOOK PLACE.

                                        The email equivalent of a live boy or a dead girl.

                                        And hammering on how it wasn’t illegal and, anyway, the warrant wouldn’t cover the things talked about is to argue about things that are much less interesting.

                                        But we’ll see.


                                        • I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that your tendency to not state your opinions clearly may just have something to do with people arguing against opinions that they wish you held but you don’t.


                                          • I actually think that the big problem is that emotions are high and people are trying to will a particular reality into existence and people like me get in the way.

                                            It’s cool. I understand how that is frustrating.

                                            I imagine that things will get better after all the tears are wiped away on Wednesday or Thursday of next week.


                                            • No, because you’re always like this. Whether emotions or high or low, whether the person you’re with is just killing time or trying to have a real conversation.

                                              Hand to God, your defining characteristic here is a refusal to outright state what you mean, even as it becomes increasingly obvious that the poor sap trying to engage you in good faith is does not understand your point.

                                              And your response is never to actually clarify your point. Which is a weird response, and makes it seem you have no intention of good faith engagement.

                                              At least with notme, for instance, he doesn’t hide his opinions or his points. I know where he stands on an issue, because he’s very forthright about it and quick to clear up any confusion.


                                              • Eh, I’ve done some tests.

                                                It usually doesn’t matter when I post an explicitly clarifcatory point.

                                                People tend to argue against the points they wish they were arguing against anyway.

                                                So I figure “why not? Seems more fun than to adopt a position I don’t hold just so they can continue to argue against the points they wish they were arguing against instead of mine.”


                                          • I’m going to go out on a limb here and suggest that your tendency to not state your opinions clearly may just have something to do with people arguing against opinions that they wish you held but you don’t.



                                        • That’s because I can never tell what your point is.

                                          I’ve mentioned this before. You appear allergic to clarity. You seem unwilling to state your opinion. Your rhetorical technique might work fine in person, but it leaves me — and I am not the only person to make this complaint — reduced to trying to guess what point you were making.

                                          And your response is never to clarify, but to further obscure.


                                          • Well, here is my clarity:

                                            I think that there was something very bad in the emails. Very bad indeed.

                                            Something that the FBI didn’t see as part of their official warranted investigation.

                                            It might be legal, it might be illegal. It might be covered by the warrant. It might not be covered by the warrant. It doesn’t matter if it was not only legal but not pertinent according to the investigation. Because it is very, very ugly.

                                            So ugly that the FBI sighed and said “it will be worse for this to come out in December than a Trump presidency would be”.


                                            THIS IS TESTABLE!

                                            Will anything happen this week?

                                            If not, we get to point at me and laugh and say “nothingburger” again.

                                            If something happens this week?

                                            I get to say “HA! The Daily Mail was on to something!”


                                            • Get pointer finger ready and repeated “Nothingburgers”.

                                              You do know that they don’t even know if the emails are duplicates of what they already have right? The Hill investigators don’t have any idea what is in them at this point, so assuming it’s bad bad does like a reasonable projection.


                                              • I suspect that part of the problem is, hey, I can go back to my speculation that happened right before we got derailed:

                                                Here’s a fun speculation: who was the first to notice these emails? Wasn’t it the NYPD investigating Wiener’s alleged indiscretion?

                                                How many of the NYPD saw these emails?


                                                  • Again, they wouldn’t need to.

                                                    What Comey did was extraordinary. What is an explanation for him doing something extraordinary? Discovery of an extraordinary email.

                                                    It might be legal, it might be illegal. It might be covered by the warrant. It might not be covered by the warrant. It doesn’t matter if it was not only legal but not pertinent according to the investigation. Because it is very, very ugly.

                                                    So ugly that the FBI sighed and said “it will be worse for this to come out in December than a Trump presidency would be”.


                                                    • What is an explanation for him doing something extraordinary?

                                                      He wasn’t in an ordinary situation, because he’d gone on the record about details of the FBI’s investigation in front of Congress. Whether that was politically-motivated grandstanding, or an appropriate response to an unusually public and politically sensitive investigation, or both [1], it was pretty unusual.

                                                      [1] I lean towards “both” myself.


                                                    • What is an explanation for him doing something extraordinary?

                                                      That there’s a cabal within the FBI that is willing to abuse Fourth Amendment protections and manipulate confidential information (650,000 e-mails!!) in an attempt to stop a candidate from winning? As I mentioned upstream, as today has gone on, this is what really scares me. I’m an admittedly old guy with one foot stuck back in the 60s, but I’d really hate to find out at this point in my life that the “you can’t trust the FBI” attitude is correct.


                                                    • Discovery of an extraordinary email.

                                                      The key to it all: Hillary had the CIA kill Vincent Foster to hide the fact that Monica Lewinsky is Bill and Gennifer Flowers’s love child, and afterward the Little Rock drug cartel was run by another one of Bill’s kids, this one with a black hooker.


                                                • Going by part of my FB feed what i can speculate about is that the entire investigation has been reopened and Hillz is certainly going to jail for (fill in the blank). If i hadn’t read those things almost as much as i’ve seen cute cat pix i might take it seriously.

                                                  But really how many times have we been around this block about X thing is just about to be uncovered that will doom her. If i didn’t know anything but the history of the various investigations, the most likely guess would be nothing will be found.


                                                  • I am not saying that Hillary is going to jail.

                                                    I am saying that there will be found something ugly.

                                                    Not illegal.
                                                    Not covered by the warrant.

                                                    Just something that will make people say “ugh”.
                                                    And the best arguments against the “ugh” will be something like “but Trump!” or “But the republicans!” rather than something like “well, you have to understand”.

                                                    And what is my evidence for this?

                                                    Nothing, and I mean *NOTHING* more than the fact that what Comey did was extraordinary.


                                                    • Uggghhh indeed. Of course critics of her will always find something to go “there she goes again.” Did she say something pro business or bad about Bernie or lefties or any damn thing. At the level you set you are 100% certain of being correct because someone can and will find a reason to criticize if they wish. And people want to find something. That is the the full story. It won’t be Trump or this time its different.

                                                      I’ve heard a double butt load of stuff already that people say is proof of her badness that would be nothingburger with cheese for anyone else.


                                                      • And, again, what I said is *TESTABLE*.

                                                        Here is my premise:

                                                        something that will make people say “ugh”.
                                                        And the best arguments against the “ugh” will be something like “but Trump!” or “But the republicans!” rather than something like “well, you have to understand”.

                                                        And we’ll know by Friday or so whether anything comes to light.

                                                        And we’ll be able to watch you, and Morat, and a handful of others on this board and see what your counter-arguments are to whatever surfaces, if anything at all.

                                                        And if nothing shows up, I’m wrong.
                                                        If something shows up but it’s how the sausage is made, I’m wrong.

                                                        It’s just that easy.


                                                        • And what i’ve said is that someone will find something to say Ugh about even is the worst thing on there is Clinton saying she doesn’t get Doctor Who. You’ve set such a low bar there is no chance of it not occurring. Clinton haters complain about everything she does. Did you hear she got paid a lot for giving speeches…Of course that is just like every other former high ranking official and especially president. But for her its just a sign of her evil. Clinton rules are different. So instead of talking about her hawkishness we hear that Bill made visits to rich leaders who gave them millions for a charity.


                                                          • So let’s make you the measure.

                                                            If something surfaces by the election that gets you, yes, you to say “BUT TRUMP!” (or “BUT BUSH!” or “BUT THE REPUBLICANS!”) as your counter-argument, then that will be the measure I am happy to use.

                                                            That can be the bar.

                                                            So if it comes out that she doesn’t like Doctor Who? You can say “Hey, that’s how the sausage is made” and I’m wrong.

                                                            No Hillary haters required.

                                                            If, however, it comes out that she did something that even you would admit was bad if Hillary did it and your immediate defense is “BUT BUSH DID THAT TOO!”, then that doesn’t require Hillary haters either.

                                                            It just requires you. That’s the beauty of it.

                                                            And exceptionally easy to prove me wrong.


                                                            • Your categories spill over a bit. Bush and Powell and Clinton were all wrong about the whole private server thing. I assume its still fair to point out hypocrisy, but whatever. That doesn’t make Clinton clean but there is hypocrisy thing. But its possible for all of them to be wrong.

                                                              BTW…there was an email where she or someone stated she just doesn’t get Doctor Who fwiw.

                                                              Do you really think we’ll find out if there was anything important is 650k of emails in the next week and half?


                                                              • One thing that definitely will (or will not!) happen is that an email will surface that will make a huge chunk of people say “ick”.

                                                                And your (you as in you) response will not be “this is freaking nothing, you’re so naïve” or whatever, it will be “BUT BUSH!” (or similar).

                                                                That’s testable.

                                                                We’ll know whether it happened by the end of the week.


                                                                • I’m not sure what responses are left to me but i guess we’ll find out eventually.

                                                                  But “her critics are hypocrites” has been a pretty durn common and correct line. Doesn’t mean she is clean but that she has been lucky enough to have terrible critics. That is an observation many people have made.


                                                                  • I’m not sure what responses are left to me but i guess we’ll find out eventually.

                                                                    I’ll break it down.

                                                                    Before election day, there either will or there will not be a particularly lurid leak regarding these emails.

                                                                    We can measure this by looking around and seeing how many people are wrinkling their nose. That’s loosey goosey but I’m not sure that I can come up with a better measure.

                                                                    Maybe saying, in your own head, “ugh, you just know that Jaybird is going to post a comment about this.”

                                                                    After that email is released/leaked, there will be an argument here in the comments in whatever the linky post is that day.

                                                                    In those comments, as you argue against people pointing at this particular email, your “defense”, if you want to call it that, that you make against the people with whom you will be arguing will not focus on whether the contents of the email are bad.

                                                                    No one will be willing to disagree that they are bad.

                                                                    Your defense will be that this is something that happens and that there is a precedent and the precedent was made by one of the Republicans. Whether Trump, or Bush, or whomever.

                                                                    I’m not accusing you of hypocrisy.

                                                                    I’m saying what the yardstick is.

                                                                    This is something that we’ll be able to look at and say either “Yes, that happened” and point to it or say “it did not happen, here are the links from the relevant period and you will see that Greg’s defense did not mention Republicans *OR* you will see that no email leak that rose to the level of ‘lurid’ occurred.”


                                                                    You may be thinking in your head “I can game this!”

                                                                    Yes. You can.

                                                                    I trust you to not game this.


                                                                    • I think a better yard stick is whether the item in question is an actual problem, legal or ethical. Is it wrong should be the question. If yes on a scale of 1-10 where does it sit.


                                                                      • Hey, I created a yard stick and then pointed out how we could either say that it had a 1 or a 0 assigned to it without doubt.

                                                                        Figure out a yardstick for figuring out whether it’s an actual problem and the difference between a 3 and a 4.


                                                        • Do you believe him?

                                                          I ask because your theory seems predicated on the idea that he knows what is in the emails (so maybe he hasn’t read them himself but someone has and accurately told him of their contents).


                                                        • As far as I understand, officially no one at the FBI has read them because there was no warrant to read them. Comey personally probably didn’t read the old ones either.

                                                          As far as I understand Jaybird’s theory, unofficially someone saw an email that will change history because it will be inequivocally bad, and showed it to Comey, and Comey felt he had to issue his letter before this email he’s not legally authorized to see of know about leaked.

                                                          It’s like “24”, but with emails. The email is so bad we are justified to do anything.


                                                            • The best part about this theory? It’s falsifiable!

                                                              No it isn’t.

                                                              As we have seen on this very thread, an action or statement by Clinton that is exactly the same as has been done by many others as part of the normal workings of Washington, is considered evidence of corruption or at the very least raises Very Troubling Questions, to which we have to defend by saying “But Bush!”

                                                              So instead of being falsifiable, there is literally a 100% chance that out of thousands of emails, at least a few will cause a general hysteria and screams of corruption from a significant number of people and handwringing about Very Troubling Questions from the Very Serious People.

                                                              Instead of being falsifiable, it would be truly bizarre and freakish if when the emails are reviewed, literally everyone from Fox News to Drudge were to shrug and move on.

                                                              Instead, I guarantee that people 10 years from now will still be bringing up “The Emails” as a reason why Clinton is corrupt.

                                                              Because they raise Very Troubling Questions.


                                                              • Further, even if Comey reads the emails and says, “Nothing to see here,” and the emails are released and everyone reads them and says, “Yep, nothing to see here,”… someone somewhere will say, “Well, of course… they destroyed the horrible one,” and that will have legs with certain folks because of course it will.

                                                                You are making some pretty strong accusations about Comey and the FBI. And maybe that is where you stand today and it wouldn’t be a totally unjustified place to stand. But if your conspiracy theory is built upon other conspiracy theories, you’ll excuse us if we wait for, ya know, actual evidence.

                                                                We have no evidence or substantiated claims that the emails have been read.
                                                                We have no evidence or substantiated claims that the read emails contain anything horrendous.
                                                                We have no evidence or substantiated claims that Comey did what he did because of his knowledge of the read, horrendous email.

                                                                We know Comey did something atypical. That is all we have.


                                                                • All its going to take is a single email that says something to the effect of:

                                                                  Advocating modest gun control: “Breitbart- Explosive bombshell- Hillary’s secret conspiracy to take your guns!

                                                                  Advocating funding for neighborhood preschools- “Gateway Pundit- Outrageous! Hillary wants lesbian government workers to be your kids babysitter!!

                                                                  Block grants for bike lanes “Drudge Siren- The UN is going to force you to ride a bike and eat kale!!

                                                                  And all the above will be collected up into:

                                                                  NYT- “Hillary’s controversial secret emails raise Very Troubling Questions”
                                                                  Next on CNN- “How will Hillary respond to the troubling accusations?”
                                                                  Maureen Dowd- “The Mean Girl, exposed”
                                                                  David Brooks- “How can liberalism recover its moral compass?”

                                                                  2 years of Congressional hearings chaired by Jason Chaffetz and Louie Gohmert investigating Hillary’s secret plan to have lesbian stormtroopers abduct American children and force them to ride bikes while eating kale and bow to Mecca.

                                                                  And so on again and so forth, and again and again.

                                                                  I think for the next 4 or 8 year I’m going to feel like Bill Murray waking up to Sonny and Cher.


                                                                • I actually find the “there’s a lot of infighting at the FBI” explanation to be a surprisingly convincing explanation.

                                                                  Bluntly put, the Clinton’s make some people crazy. Like full-blown conspiracy theory crazy. The weird CT’s turning up about the CF, for instance, coming from otherwise sane individuals who start foaming at the mouth and offering ‘explanations’ of the corruption that literally make no sense. (Like, for instance, that the CF is some sort of money-laundering front for Clinton bribes. Which, if you understand how charitable foundations are organized and audited, this is crazy. It’s literally the worst vehicle possible to launder bribes through, and the people that try end up doing so very obviously — huge salaries, massive travel budgets, ‘fundraisers’ at their own hotels, etc).

                                                                  So it wouldn’t surprise me too much, despite how much I’d prefer the FBI to be a bastion of professional, unbiased, principled folks — to find there’s a nutty core that’s absolutely certain in their guts that Clinton’s laundering the Saudi Bribes that caused the Stand Down Order over Benghazi through the CF — and is furious that the higher-ups refuse to prosecute it. Or even open up serious investigations.

                                                                  Because she is so clearly, undeniably, totally corrupt, that “bribery” or “incompetence” or “weakness” is the only possible excuse to keep them on the chain, keep them from exposing the truth they know MUST lie beneath.

                                                                  I think it’s far more complicated than, say, Comey bungling the crap out of it (if he was that worried about leakers, let it leak then say something — he looks principled and he has an excuse to hammer down whatever idiot opened his mouth and was defying his authority), but it doesn’t require much assumption other than “There’s people in the FBI with incoherent Clinton hatred, just like in the public at large”.

                                                                  (Although as someone snarked, the fact that Anthony Weiner is still alive is proof positive the Clinton’s really don’t have people killed…)


                                                              • Sorry, I’ve been sick all day with a fever.

                                                                I’ll just say that there are two parts to this test, and the first is not whether the email will cause general hysteria. It’s whether you (Or Greg, in this case) says “Yes. That’s the lurid email they found.”

                                                                So if there is an email that comes out that makes you (or Greg, in this case) say “ugh, nothingburger”, then that’s not an email that counts for this test. Indeed, if we make it to Wednesday Next without any of those emails coming to light, hey, my theory will have been falsified.

                                                                The first half of the test is *NOT* whether 100,000 fans of r/The_Donald are saying “this email is a big deal”. It’s whether you (or Greg, in this case) say it.

                                                                Edit: For example, today would have had precisely zero examples. Just one week to go until my hypothesis is falsified!


                                                          • J_A,
                                                            If half the stuff I hear about Clinton from people who work for her is true, I’m very, very glad the FBI is speaking out.
                                                            (I’m equally sure that the FBI doesn’t know half the dirt that my friend does. They ain’t that good.)
                                                            At this point, corruption isn’t even the problem anymore. I could and would have voted for a reasonably corrupt Hillary Clinton.

                                                            I cannot vote for an insane Hillary Clinton.


                                          • And your response is never to clarify, but to further obscure.

                                            Yep. This.

                                            It’s annoying and tedious and I really cannot believe he wants to be this way, but he is.



          • So, the easiest explanation here, since CORRUPTION is on the table, is that only Comey is acting corruptly?

            That’s certainly a logical possibility. It just strains credulity at some point to continue to attribute corruption to Clinton accusers while denying Clinton corruption. I mean, corruption is on the table, yes?


            • No, the easiest explanation here is trying to thread a political needle and failing.

              However, if we’re assuming malfeasance, then we have evidence of Comey’s malice that is at least as strong as the evidence of Clinton Foundation’s corruption–he violated longstanding norms about how the FBI should conduct itself and created a massive appearance of impropriety by doing so.

              Your theory also has the problem that, if he had evidence that explosive of pay-to-play corruption at the Clinton Foundation, and it justified flouting those norms, wouldn’t it make more sense to either come out with it or leak it? I mean, it’s not like there’s a ton of time before the election, and the way he’s played this has seriously hurt his credibility.


              • Your theory…

                Pillsy, I don’t have a theory. I stated that waaaay upthread: that Comey’s actions don’t make any sense to me, on any level. (Tho Michael Cain just posted a comment I agree with regarding leak-prevention…).

                I was merely responding to your theory that Comey is the one who’s corrupt (all things being equal in the realm of logical possibility and so on…).


                • That’s because Comey’s actions violate long-standing DoJ precedents.

                  If the man had come out and said “Yes, this violates precedent, but I feel this information is critical for the public to know as it votes” and then presented information, maybe we could talk about that.

                  But what he gave was non-information. It wasn’t “We found THIS in the email, and this is important” it wasn’t even “We found NEW emails we hadn’t seen before”. It was “Huma apparently used her husband’s laptop, and there’s emails on it, but we haven’t even looked at their content.

                  It’s inflammatory, but not informative at all. It generates speculation, but doesn’t actually give anyone useful information.

                  Comey did something and that something was against precedent and protocol, and he didn’t even have the grace to have a good reason to violate it.

                  What do you know now that you didn’t Thursday? Well, Huma used her husband’s laptop for email at least once. That’s all we know. Yet the speculation is rampant, including Trump running around claiming the FBI has information that’s worse than Watergate.

                  Not to mention that, at best, he was really walking the line on legality there.


                  • I’m sure that should HRC win the election, he will be punished.

                    Anyway, they had some DOJ guy on the NPR saying he didn’t violate any laws, but only “protocol”. Hey, if the big shots can do that, say like having their own email server, surely some nobody in the FBI can do something of smaller scope?

                    Anyway, I’m not waiting for more women to come forth claiming Trump groped them or maybe someone who was under age at the time.


                  • morat20,
                    I know that Huma has e-mails that Hillary deleted, and then claimed that they were just “yoga schedules”.
                    (This, because they’ve got more e-mails on her laptop than Clinton did after she got done deleting shit, and I assume they grabbed the metadata, as that’s legal.)
                    I also know that the FBI considered covering this up to be so egregious than nearly half of them submitted resignation letters.


              • Pillsy,
                What the fuck. Longstanding now means six fucking months???
                Yeah, I’m just gonna go ahead and call bullshit.
                You want more evidence, I got some local shit about the Hatch Act that the FBI was up to their heels in convincing our fratboy of a mayor not to run.

                Spirit’s been broken since forever. Longstanding norms that are followed more in the breach are NOT actual norms.


              • Pillsy,
                Comey was a dupe of the powers that be.
                So’s Trump, and especially so’s Clinton.

                Comey is right now acting in self-interest, against the orders he’s been given.


            • Well, look at it this way — the list of people blasting Comey for this include the chief ethics officer for Dubya’s White House and a Fox News host (who admittedly, had seen a NY AG do a similar nasty thing to her during an election). and multiple DoJ officials — past and current. .

              So what’s more likely? Comey made a bad call — possibly corrupt, possibly just stupid, definitely against policy — or HRC is such a super-villian that tens of millions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of manhours by the FBI, Congress, the entire press corp, and god knows how many bored, rich conservatives couldn’t find it….

              But this time, we WILL find it. In the emails Comey hasn’t seen, because he didn’t have a warrant. Like literally, he went to Congress over emails he hadn’t read, and couldn’t legally have read.


            • It just strains credulity at some point to continue to attribute corruption to Clinton accusers while denying Clinton corruption

              Interesting legal strategy there.

              “Your honor, since lawbreaking is on the table, it strains credulity to attribute lawbreaking to the defendants, while denying lawbreaking on the part of the district attorney.”


              • Awhile back, I read a story about a black man who worked at a corner grocery store.

                He kept getting grabbed by the cops. Taken into (brief) custody, taken in for questioning, pulled over when driving, yanked from his job. My favorite was when the police rousted him from the store he worked at because they’d gotten complaints he was loitering. They kicked him out even as the store manager kept telling him that the guy worked there.

                Never actually charged with a crime, nothing that ever went to court.

                Obviously he had an “air of corruption”. A man investigated by the police so many times must have done something, which justified further investigations. And if they couldn’t find out what he did, that just proved that whatever he did was so bad he hid it really well. Eventually, they’d catch him red-handed.

                Or maybe a cop or two just disliked the guy and harassed him, and who is going to stop them? Who you gonna believe? Those upstanding cops, or the guy who keeps getting investigated for all them crimes?


        • I have to admit that as today has worn on, I’m more and more inclined to believe that Comey really was between a rock and hard place: he knew the leaks from lower down were about to come, the top DOJ folks were on him to be silent, so he settled for trying to say “There’s another pile of e-mails although they’re likely nothin'” as quietly as he could, but loud enough to keep the lower-downs silent for another ten days.

          The scary thing, if that’s right, is that some part of the FBI is out of control.


          • The scary thing, if that’s right, is that some part of the FBI is out of control.

            This. I read about that too: that Comey released the info etc because he knew it’d be leaked anyway from within his own department. Such a situation certainly accounts for why he did what he did, tho it obviously makes him look like a goat in the process. If true, we’ve certainly hit a low point in the “trust in governmental institutions” category. Even governmental officials don’t trust governmental institutions….


            • The FBI has apparently know there were Huma emails on the latop for weeks. (It’s the sort of thing that would come up with a simple forensic check for email files, archive folders, etc).

              They’ve been sitting on it for at least a month, maybe longer.

              I admit “Someone was gonna leak it, so I’ll try to control the leak” is about the best defense Comey has — but it’s weird that no one leaked it for the weeks they had it, and that Comey didn’t throw out some more obvious sheet anchors as he sent the mail to people he KNEW would make partisan hay out of it.

              Bluntly, he should have phrased that letter more carefully than anything else in his life. And he didn’t.

              He’s not just getting flak from Democrats about it, for that matter.


                • Good god, Jaybird.

                  Admittedly, it’s pretty poor compared to the real Gish Gallop, but I applaud your tenacity. I’m sure this time Lucy won’t yank away the football.

                  And if she does, I’m sure the next Wikileaks reveal will contain something this time! It’ll happen, man. Keep the faith.


                • This is super-weird. If you’re looking for an aspect of US foreign policy that is a good example–perhaps even an existence proof–of ‘s “corrupt but totally legal” kind of corruption, it would be hard to beat our alliance with Saudi Arabia, but one thing about that totally legal corruption is that folks in Washington hardly need to be bribed to do what the Saudis want.


                  • My favorite has been the theory that SA bribed Hillary into approving an arms deal via a small donation to the CF. (Small given the CF’s size).

                    A deal that was, in fact, identical to deals with SA that have gone down routinely for decades, and that State was not even remotely the sole signatory for.


                    • My theory wasn’t that the arms deal happened because of a bribe. Even if true, that was “Ric Flair won because he used the other wrestler’s tights!” level of corrupt. That’s not even really cheating. It’s “the other wrestler should have expected that”.

                      My theory was that *LIBYA* happened because of a bribe.


                      • “My theory was that *LIBYA* happened because of a bribe.”

                        I’m going to briefly interject here that everybody that talks about how Libya was a clusterfish (it was) acts as if the USA was running the show on its own. Apparently nobody but me seems to remember that France, the U.K., and other European countries (*) were the ones driving the Libya intervention, and putting pressure on the USA to jump on board, which we reluctantly did.

                        I understand USA Rah! Rah! Rah! But come on, there are other countries in the world, and they have agency too. The intervention in Libya was not a Hillary or Obama idea, even though they finally acquiesced to it.

                        Of course, perhaps the Saudis bribed David Cameron and Nicolas Sarkozy instead. Cunning people, the Saudis.

                        Or, perhaps, Hillary told Huma (in an email) to tell the Saudis at the next Muslim Sisterhood meeting to go bribe Cameron and Sarkozy, so they would then force the USA to intervene. That’s how Hillary kept her hands clean. FCnnier than the Saudis, she is. But we now have the email. This time she is toast. For sure. Now.

                        (*) Driven by popular opinion pressure because of the images of Libyan refugees. We have now Syrian refugee fatigue, and thus forget that the Libya conflict was the beginning of it all.


                  • Pillsy,

                    I think I need to say it again, nauseating as it might be: what you look at as political business as usual lots of other people look at as fundamentally corrupt. I’m not really sure what “legality” has to do with it at that point, to be honest.

                    Now, you may (and I can tell that you DO) disagree with those folks, or ME for saying that that’s what they’re thinking. But I don’t know what that accomplishes, to be honest. It’s where we’re at, all your assertions that Trumpism reduces to mere racism notwithstanding.


                    • Doesn’t it matter though, whether or not this IS in fact business as usual? It might still be corrupt. But IF it is corrupt AND if it is business as usual, than criticizing only Clinton seems to be about more than being upset about corruption… no?


                    • Dude, I was agreeing with you that there are some things that a lot of people think are fundamentally corrupt despite being legal (and political business as usual), and that the US alliance with Saudi Arabia is a perfect example.

                      Of course, the fact that some people are thinking that doesn’t mean that all people, or even all people who think HRC is corrupt, are thinking that.

                      And that’s the problem with your argument–like most arguments that attempt to demonstrate that there’s more to Trumpism than mere racism, it ignores what Trumpists actually say (“Lock her up!)” in favor of some more reasonable thing that more reasonable people say.


                      • like most arguments that attempt to demonstrate that there’s more to Trumpism than mere racism

                        Fine. You win. 43% of the electorate are deplorable, irredeemable, pathological racists.

                        OK, what do we do now that that fact is established? Call them “racists” with more passion? With more conviction? Stem the tide via pure electoral force by appealing to our superior (+4% at this point) numbers, nipping this burgeoning epidemic of racism in the bud?


                        • No, I’d say about 20-25% of the country is made up of pathological racists, and another 15-20% is made up of people who think that voting for a pathological racist for President is OK as long as it gets them their preferred choice on abortion or taxes or gun control or something.

                          Pretending that the 20-25% of the country that is pathologically racist is anything but pathologically racist is how that other 15-20% wound up with the unpleasant choice between selling the unborn/the Second Amendment/religious liberty out to Hillary or voting for Donald Trump. I don’t know what the solution for the rest of us is supposed to be, but I propose we start by not indulging in the exact pleasant fantasies that left the GOP so vulnerable to Trumpism.


                          • Pretending that the 20-25% of the country that is pathologically racist is anything but pathologically racist

                            What’s the party breakdown on that number? What’s the split between GOPconservatives and liberalDems?

                            Maybe that depends on how we define “pathological”, I guess. I useta live in Chicago, which is without doubt the most racist city I’ve ever experienced. And I’ve also lived in the South!!


              • Or … he could have waited for the “leak” and said that This Kind of Behavior Won’t be Tolerated in My Department!! He’da come out smelling like four day old roses if he did that. Which is better than he smells right now.


                • My thoughts exactly. If he’d waited for the leak, then immediately held a press conference that was effectively:

                  “We don’t normally comment on this, especially so near an election, but given the leak we will say the following: In the course of another investigation, we happened across an email archive of Huma’s covering her period at State. We have not checked the content of those emails, but plan to, as part of our original investigation. As we have not yet gotten a warrant to search them, we do not know if these emails contain anything new. That is all”

                  He’d have come across fine. Democrats would grumble a bit, but mostly about the original leaker.

                  This? This has led to Reid dropping a nasty gram on him that’s undoubtedly gonna come up Monday. (The summation is: “Since you’re deciding to comment on ongoing investigations in defiance of protocol. how about you talk about the rather explosive information you have involving Trump? Stuff we’ve been briefed on but, you know, didn’t leak. Stuff with a lot more meat on the bones than some emails you hadn’t even gotten the warrant to read. I mean, if you’re going to violate the Hatch Act, let’s go ahead and lay ALL those investigations on the table.”