From Pine View Farm

All about the Benjamins 0

Shorter Michael-in-Norfolk: Follow the money.

The Voter Fraud Fraud 0

Daniel Ruth has a few suggestions for other things Donald Trump’s “dubiously titled Commission on Election Integrity” should investigate when they have finished gutting out the vote.

A Case of Consumption 0

Donald Trump tweeting

Click for the original image.

“An Armed Society Is a Polite Society” 0

Politeness is a family value.

A 15-year-old female was airlifted from Henrieville to Salt Lake City Sunday night after her younger brother allegedly shot her in the back during what police are calling an “altercation.” Garfield County Sheriff Danny Perkins said the male juvenile was around 12 or 13-years-old but he was unsure of his exact age.


Have you noticed how, in police-speak, once someone has been exposed to politeness, he or she is no longer a “man” or a “woman” or a “boy” or a “girl,” but rather becomes an impersonal “male” or a “female”?

Hoist on the Elmer Gantry 0

Timothy Egan marvels at the unwavering support that evangelical they-call-themselves-Christians have for Donald Trump, a venal vulgarian who makes Bob Guccione look like a choir boy, and concludes

Patriotism is supposed to be the last refuge of scoundrels, but religion surely is a close second.

Follow the link to learn why he says that.

Russian Impulses 0

Josh Marshal thinks the Trump-Russia thing may be even worse than imagined. Me, I don’t know. I’m in a frequent state of “who woulda thunk” over the actions of our President, overwhelmed by the cavalcade of villainy and stupid (or it is the stupid villainy?). But over my years of reading Josh Marshall, I’ve found him a sober and reasonable interpreter of events.

A snippet:

Yesterday we learned that President Trump had a second, undisclosed discussion with President Putin for as long as an hour with only Putin’s translator present. In other words, no other American citizen was there to make a record of or hear what was discussed.

It’s been noted that President Obama spoke for a few minutes one-on-one once with Dmitry Medvedev when he was President or Russia. My understanding is that Medvedev actually speaks decent English; so translation is less of an issue. But no one had any reason to believe that President Obama was compromised by the Russian government or somehow in league with it. We have plenty of reasons to believe that about President Trump. (Is this circular reasoning? No, as I’ll explain in a moment.) I see no plausible explanation for this latest revelation other than President Trump wanting to discuss things with President Putin that he does not want any other American citizen to hear.


Laurie Garrett:

Most Americans think that public health is services for poor people, and since most Americans hate poor people and want all poor people’s services destroyed, they hate public health.

Truth in Labeling 0

Wingnut Synergy 0

Leonard Pitts, Jr., notes that it’s a thing:

Has anyone else noticed that the more power the extreme right wing amasses, the less satisfied it seems to be? That the more government it controls, the more fearful and angry the extreme right becomes?

More at the link.

Made Man 0

Title:  Trump's

Click for the original image.

Land Grab 0

Hair-Doings 0

Solomon Jones.

Fly the Fiendly Skies 0

Rat tge airline gate agent makes and announcement:  Folks, I'm getting a lot of questions about baggage policy, in-flight meals, and wifi, so I'm gonna try to answer everybody's questions at once.  In each of these situations, there is one option that makes your flight more pleasant.  We will never choose that option.  Rat talking to official:  It's nice to give the cattle some clarity.

Click to see the image at its original location.

I used to travel for work. I was stepping on airplanes two or three times a month to fly all around the USA to marvelous sites such as Fargo, North Dakota, and Monroe, Louisiana (no offense to the persons in those cities; I was always treated with hospitality, but the getting there . . . .). If I never step on another US airline, it will be too soon.

Death of a Thousand (Paper) Cuts 0

What Noz said.


Rose Bird:

The judiciary must not take on the coloration of whatever may be popular at the moment. We are guardian of rights, and we have to tell people things they often do not like to hear.

Misunderstanding or Misdirection? 0

Jared Bernstein, in another excellent article, points out that Republican statements on health care and other aspects of the “social safety net” betray (or portray) an essential misunderstanding of how insurance works.

It’s like the old joke about life insurance: You’re betting you’re going to die, the insurance company is betting you won’t, and you hope they are right.

The purpose of experience is to spread risk so that each person bears a little tine bit of the cost so that, if someone needs assistance, the assistance is available without crushing expense. In contrast, Republicans seem to believe that crushing persons who do not have buckets of money under mountains of cost is somehow a good and moral thing.

Of course, that might seem reasonable to those who believe that there is no such thing as the common good. Here’s a bit from the article (emphasis added):

A few months ago, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, R-Wisconsin, argued that Obamacare’s fatal structural flaw was that it was set up so the healthy would subsidize the sick.

That’s kind of a description about how insurance works.


Two things, at least. First, I do think today’s conservatives are uniquely uneducated when it comes to the role of government in mitigating risk. But second, the old Upton Sinclair insight about people being paid not to understand something is also very much in play.

Twits on Twitter 0

Would it be appropriate to refer to someone who sends bigoted “tweets” as a “twigot”?

On the Cheap 0

“An Armed Society Is a Polite Society” 0

Fly the polite skies (emphasis added to highlight prima facie evidence that some persons are too stupid to be allowed weaponry).

For the 13th time this year, a passenger was found with a gun in carry-on luggage at Sacramento International Airport.


The passenger told authorities that he had borrowed his mother’s bag and the firearm belonged to her, according to the TSA. It is not known if he was arrested.

The TSA discovered 78 firearms in carry-on bags the same week at airports around the country. Of those, 62 were loaded and 32 had a round chambered.

Worst Aid Kit 0

Jared Bernstein, writing at, struggles to understand why the Republican Party, with control of the legislative and executive branches of the federal government, has been so far unable to accomplish their most vocally-stated goal: repeal of the Affordable Care Act. He warns that his speculation is just that, speculation, but it is a thoughtful piece and worth the few minutes of your time reading it requires.

Here’s a bit:

. . . Republicans’ efforts to repeal and replace have run smack into these contradictions. They propose to seriously hurt some of the very people who helped put Trump in the White House to partially offset the costs of wasteful tax cuts for the rich. They say they want to help the disadvantaged, but their actions betray such claims, and their falsehoods have been most clearly exposed in this health-care debate.

There may still be enough representativeness left in our democracy to block such venal efforts. But then again, there may not. Stay tuned.