From Pine View Farm

Rebranding 0

Caption:  Donald Trump wants to repaint Air Force One.  Image:  Air Force One repainted with orange replacing the blue, a Twitter logo replacing the eagle, and

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Russian Impulses 0

Shaun Mullen keeps track of the Russia investigation so I don’t have to.

Republican Family Values 0

Mother to Thai skin diver:

Via Juanita Jean.

QOTD 0

Norman Davies:

People don’t see very often their death coming… Look at the French Revolution: The king of France was thinking in the 1780s, ‘We’re doing rather better than my father in the 1770s.’

Facebook Frolics 0

Sauce for the Goose 0

Title:  Dear Senators, Imagine the Stirrup on the Other Foot.  Image:   Man in hospital gown on examination table, his feet in stirrups.  Supreme Court Justice holding gavel looks at him from the other side of the stirrups saying,

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Pursuing a Purity of Paleness 0

Will Bunch minces no words in describing Donald Trump’s policy towards immigrants, at least, towards immigrants who aren’t from Norway. A nugget:

Is it fair to use a harsh term like “ethnic cleansing” — which many Americans associate with the brutal and often deadly policies of despots like Serbia’s war criminals of the 1990s — to talk about what’s happening right here, right now?

The United Nations defines ethnic cleansing as “rendering an area ethnically homogeneous by using force or intimidation to remove from a given area persons of another ethnic or religious group.” It’s hard to look at the big picture of Trump’s policies on refugees and harsh immigration enforcement and not conclude the goal is to make America more ethnically homogeneous.

In a harsh, realpolitick sense, Trump’s policies may be the only last-gasp long-term survival policy for his Republican Party, which has shown itself each election cycle to be increasing older and more white even as it’s held onto Congress and regained the White House. But immigration brutality is also the policy most guaranteed to earn the continued political gratitude of the conservative base that elected him.

The Lie of the Land 0

Jay Bookman stands analyzes the Trumpeted allegations of aggrandizement. A snippet (emphasis added):

In fact, just this week, North Korean officials failed to show up at a long-scheduled meeting with U.S. military officials on repatriation of remains, suggesting that progress on that front remains difficult if not impossible.

That’s troubling in its own right, to see an American president lie about and create false expectations about the remains of the fallen. At any other time in our history, under any other president, to fake such an announcement would be a major scandal. But under this president, we all know it to be part of a long-running pattern of behavior in which Trump claims credit for great success that in fact never materializes.

“An Armed Society Is a Polite Society” 0

The hunt for politeness continues.

Michigan State Police say a man who was varmint hunting was shot Wednesday night by a resident of a home on Hodunk Road who mistook him for wildlife. The incident happend in Branch County’s Union Township.

The story points out that the varmint hunter was not wearing blaze orange. It doesn’t mention his (apparent) antlers and bushy white tail.

Strings 0

Vladimir Putin says,

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Tales of the Trumpling: Snapshots of Trickle-Down Trumpery 0

QOTD 0

Gore Vidal:

Half of the American people have never read a newspaper. Half never voted for President. One hopes it is the same half.

Recommended Reading 0

The Wars of the Jews, by Flavius Josephus.

Surprisingly enough, this is a rip-snorter. If you want to learn about Roman siege tactics, this is the book for you.

A couple of warnings:

When Josephus refers to a rebel leader named “Josephus” in the text, he refers to himself. He was initially one of the Jewish rebels against Rome, then was captured by the Romans, and ultimately concluded that the rebels were, as my old boss would have said, “in error.”

Also, the translator wastes much energy in trying to align Josephus’s words with the Christian scriptures, but, fortunately, such is confined to the footnotes.

Also, if you can, kick a few bucks to Project Gutenberg. It is one of the best things on the inner webs.

Break Time 0

Off to drink liberally.

The Lie of the Land, Reprise 0

At the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Michael Rich and Jennifer Kavanaugh discuss our national epidemic of truth decay.

The Lie of the Land 0

Unoriginalism 0

Steve Chapman explains why Constitutional “originalists” are neither “Constitutional” nor “originalists,” but are rather sophists of the highest order.

Rendering unto Caesar 0

Tony Norman reflects of the strange relationship between evangelical “Christians” and Donald Trump. A snippet:

In what can only be called “The Faustian Art of the Deal,” many Christians believe that meeting Donald Trump at the crossroads at midnight and selling their souls for a season of “winning” isn’t too high a price to pay for access to an elusive elixir called power.

“Watch Out! She’s Got a Loaded Camera!” 0

Mike Littwin.

“An Armed Society Is a Polite Society” 0

Facilitate politeness whilst in your motorized conveyance.

In a news release, spokesperson Sgt. Michelle Anaya said a 28-year-old Portsmouth resident was driving her son to a doctor’s appointment. While on I-64 near Mercury Boulevard, her son unbuckled himself and managed to find his mother’s handgun in her purse.

The woman, who told police that she was on her phone, did not notice until she heard a bang when her son shot himself in the wrist.