Saturday, January 30, 2021

Local Climate Deniers Lie About Globally Melting Ice Story

A recent paper in The Crysophere found that globally the world "lost 28 trillion tonnes of ice between 1994 and 2017," and that the rate of loss has risen -- that is, accelerated -- since the 1990s: 
"The rate of ice loss has risen by 57 % since the 1990s – from 0.8 to 1.2 trillion tonnes per year."
The Washington Post reported on this paper here, noting the accelerating and noting uncertainties.

How did Oregon climate deniers Chuck Wiese and Lars Larson decide to report this news on the radio? By lying about it.
Is The World On The Verge Of Losing All Our Ice?

Lars speaks with meteorologist and climate expert, Chuck Wiese about a recent Washington Post article claiming that the Earth is losing 1.2 trillion tons of ice yearly, and we’re on the verge of losing all of it.
Nowhere in the Washington Post article does it say we're on the verge of losing all the planet's ice. Everyone intelligent person knows that's not true, but Larson and Wiese lie about it anyway. 

While WaPo does present such a rhetorical question going into a next section
The question now becomes: Just how fast will climate change lead to the melting of the biggest and thickest ice, the ice atop Greenland and Antarctica?
it never seriously questions or claims that all ice will vanish, and no scientist ever implies it, and they never come close to trying to answer it, let alone implying that we're "on the verge of losing all of it." Claiming so is false. Because the very idea is absurd, it's utterly irrelevant to the story -- unless you're a denier and that's the only piece of lint you can manufacture.

Wiese makes the ridiculous calculation
From Chuck Weise: Global ice volume from Greenland, Arctic and Antarctica = 3.428850 x 10^7 Km^3 x .83 Gt/Km^3 = 2.8459455 x 10^16 tons of global ice. So at the rate of 1.2 trillion tons of ice loss per year, how long would it take to melt all the ice on earth? Answer: 2.8459455 x 10^16 tons / 1.2 x 10^12 tons per year = 23,716.3 years to melt all the earth ice at this rate. As you can see, the whole story is idiotic as are most “climate change” stories because within this time period, we will go thru another Milankovitch planetary cycle which will trigger another ice age. That is less than 10,000 years away.
which is ridiculous for three reasons:
  1. six significant figures on the answer! Uh, no -- two at most.
  2. it's a linear calculation that doesn't take the acceleration of ice loss into account (which still wouldn't put us on the "verge" of losing all the world's ice, but would make a large difference in the result), and
  3. the next ice age isn't "less than 10,000 years away." In fact, according to Ganopolski et al, Nature 2016 the start of a new ice age "was narrowly missed before the beginning of the Industrial Revolution," and that "even in the absence of human perturbations no substantial build-up of ice sheets would occur within the next several thousand years and that the current interglacial would probably last for another 50,000 years." They further conclude
“…moderate anthropogenic cumulative CO2 emissions of 1,000 to 1,500 gigatonnes of carbon will postpone the next glacial inception by at least 100,000 years.”  -- Nature letter, Jan 2016, doi:10.1038/nature16494 
We've already emitted about 475 GtC (gigatonnes of carbon) by my reckoning, and are emitting around 11 GtC/yr, including land use changes. So we may yet emit enough to delay the next plunge into a glacial period by another 50,000 years or so. (And future Earthlings, if there are any left, may decide they like it that way. Or they may be very smart and decide they prefer a natural Earth. Or they may be already have moved on large generation ships to a near Earth-like planet.)

Who knows, but the science doesn't say the next ice age will start in 10,000 years. 

So the Oregon deniers didn't just lie about the reporting on the scientific finding, they botched up their denial of it too. It seems being a climate denier is getting to be harder and harder anymore. Next thing you know they're going to form a union to try to retain some relevancy.

Friday, January 29, 2021

A View From the Future Here in the Present

From SpaceX:

Now 7 Deaths from Capitol Riot; Two Police Suicides

Many people keep saying that five (5) people died in the Capitol riot on Jan 6th, such as Frank Bruni in today's NY Times. But now seven (7) people are dead as a result of it, and what's hard for me to understand is that the other two are suicides of police officers. 

Here are the deaths from the January 6 riots at the U.S. Capitol:

  • Ashli Babbitt, rioter (shot and killed, Jan 6th)
  • Kevin Greeson, rioter (heart attack, Jan 6th)
  • Rosanne Boyland, rioter (crushed, Jan 6th)
  • Benjamin Philips (stroke, Jan 6th)
  • Brian Sicknick, Capitol Police Officer (succumbed to injuries, Jan 7th)
  • Howard Liebengood, Capitol Police Officer (suicide, Jan 9th)
  • Jeffrey Smith, D.C. Police Officer (suicide, Jan 15th)
Liebengood just came to notice in the last few days; see Politico from Wednesday.

Why these suicides? Granted, the fighting there was truly medieval, it seems. You've seen the same videos I have. The NY Times has some clips today that show a friend of Rosanne Boyland trying to save her but realizing she's dead. The attack going on around her is stunning for its viciousness. You almost can't believe that such people came from ordinary American society, and are, in many cases, back in it again, walking among us. 

Did these officers who committed suicide have PTSD? Did they see and experience things they couldn't get over, things we're unaware of? Were they perhaps shamed by the intense criticism the police, and especially the Capitol police, received from some in the wake of the riot, the accusations they were collaborating? Am I failing to understand the intensity of what they went through there?

This puzzles me, and in some way worries me. I think it's because the idea of violence on that scale and intensity no longer seems unthinkable, not just at the Capitol, but anywhere now in US society. It really is the birth of a new kind of domestic terrorism. How do you root it out? Especially now that the country is armed to the teeth, including with assault weapons, true weapons of war, and many of these rioters look no different than soldiers involved in war. Politicians, acting on a subset of constituents wishes, have let the gun situation get so extreme and ridiculously out of hand that violent conclusions now seem almost inevitable. I certainly no longer find it unthinkable. That's hard to shake.

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Michael Mann's New Book

Michael Mann has an new book out, The New Climate War*, which is already getting a lot of reviews.

*I don't earn anything from this link.

I think it's clear now that Mann is the obvious replacement for James Hansen regarding a universal spokesperson for global climate change, if there is to be a single person. He's constantly in the media now. He's all over Twitter, Facebook, a co-author on many papers, writing for Newsweek, speaking everywhere. 

In my view Mann has always been a pugilist. Unfortunately that's what was needed over the last 20 years, by both sides, and Mann fit the bill. Fortunately he came out on top. He fought back and survived all the attacks that came his way, because he and his co-authors Bradley and Hughes (which everyone ignores, for some reason) published a scientifically accurate graph that shows the startling rise in northern hemisphere temperature over the last two centuries. Their science was right.

I first met Michael Mann virtually when writing about the controversial (and wrong) Soon and Baliunas 2003 paper for Scientific American. After that we met a couple of times when I was living in New Hampshire and he and his wife, whose parents lived in southernmost Maine, came up for the Christmas holidays, and we would have coffee and talk in Portsmouth, NH. That gave me the idea to profile him for Scientific American, when I drove down to Charlottesville, Virginia in early 2005, where he was still employed at the time, at the Univ of Virginia. I like to think my profile was ahead of its time.

I've followed his work since as it's been clear the hockey stick remains correct -- it's been replicated numerous times -- and he's been attacked for purely political reasons, and triumphed over them all. 

I'm pretty sure that this blog gave Mann the idea to start the RealClimate blog with some colleagues, so there's that.

[OK, my ego boost for the night is done.]

I think Mann has earned every bit of his current position and stature, and he has dispatched all of those who have tried to take him on, like Steve McIntyre, Ken Cuccinelli, Joe Barton and Mark Steyn. Steyn is still trying to get Mann off his back. What a shame.

As I wrote, Mann is a pugilist, and were I in a foxhole, he's definitely someone I'd want in there with me. So I'm looking forward to reading his new book. In particular, I'm looking forward to seeing what he has to say about the new climate catastrophists, those, led by Jem Bendell, who seem very sure that civilization is headed for societal collapse -- hence their "deep adaptation," which I'm still not sure I understand. But it will be soon, they say. I've been reading them, and in a book I just finished titled This Civilization is Finished by Rupert Read and Samuel Alexander (all of 85 pages for $6.50), Read thinks that our current society will be done in about 20 years time by climate change. (Literally -- I'm not kidding.) 

How do Read, Bendell and many others come to this conclusion? By assuming large nonlinearities and tipping points in the climate system, and quickly, which climate scientists do not necessarily -- or usually -- methane clathrate melting in the Arctic, runaway permafrost melting, very strong ice-albedo feedbacks. 

So I want to see what Mann has to say about this. I'll likely be quoting from his book for awhile. Meanwhile I see many people pointing to it as an important book and it might be worth your while buying a copy and reading it. (Again, I don't get a penny for recommending it. I do this all because I have the best of hearts.) 

((I don't, of course, but wish I did, but as always am doing my best.))

Why There Was No One to Open the Biden's Door

One of the last things I blogged about, several days ago, was why Joe Biden, or at least one of his aides, couldn't open his own door into the White House residence.

{Sometimes I just get sick of being in front of the computer, nauseous really, plus I have a bad neck, and I need to take a few days off. Hence my absence.}

But, as usual, and in keeping with my blog's motto of "Rule #1: You can never ask too many questions," there was more to this story than meets the eye, and my eye.

Turns out, Trump's team, being the pure bastard that he is, fired the White House's Chief Usher on their way out the door -- at 11:30 am, when Trump's presidency ended at noon. As the guy was moving furniture.

One source said

“The Trumps sent the butlers home when they left so there would be no one to help the Bidens when they arrived.”

and, indeed, that's exactly what happened

And 75 M Americans who voted for Trump, confused about right and wrong, about the very nature of good and evil, probably will have cheered for this impolite, indecent, uncouth gesture, even though these decent people just lost their jobs. Like Trump and his misses, I'm guessing it makes them feel good, and right now that's all that matter to their corpus callosum. 

Thursday, January 21, 2021

The 10 greatest predictions in physics

I have a feature article in this month's issue of Physics World magazine, "The 10 greatest predictions in physics." The version in the magazine has a better design, but here's the free version they offer.

Biden Can't Open His Own Door

Why couldn't Joe Biden have just opened the doors himself? 

Are we a [representative] democracy, or a monarchy? Jeez.

Only a Crisis....

“Only a crisis - actual or perceived - produces real change. When that crisis occurs, the actions that are taken depend on the ideas that are lying around. That, I believe, is our basic function: to develop alternatives to existing policies, to keep them alive and available until the politically impossible becomes the politically inevitable.”

― Milton Friedman, economist

Michael Beschloss on Trump's Legacy

From Michael Beschloss, the presidential historian, quoted in The Atlantic yesterday:

“This is the only president in American history who incited an insurrection against Congress that could have resulted in assassinations and hostage-taking and, conceivably, the cancellation of a free presidential election and the fracturing of a democracy. That’s a fact, and it won’t change in 50 years. It’s very hard to think of a scenario under which someone might imagine some wonderful thing that Donald Trump did that will outshine that. He did, literally, the worst thing that an American president could ever do.”
The same article also ran this photo of Trump and his wife as they were leaving the White House. I've never seen him like that -- he looks utterly defeated.

Wednesday, January 20, 2021

The Kracken Slithers Away

Sidney Powell has dropped her Georgia lawsuit.

Instead, she's being sued for $1.3 billion by Dominion Voting Systems. I suspect she'll krack and make a public announcement that she doesn't have any evidence and she never did and she's sorry. Though personally I don't think that's enough, as DVS may still claim some real damage to their reputation. Could still bankrupt her. It would be soundly deserved. With any justice her behavior will ruin her career, but given present Republican extremism they'll likely flock to hire her when their own extreme craziness gets them in legal trouble. (Who else would take them as clients?)

Other lawsuits being abandoned. Of course, politicians have political contributors to worry about:

Trump's Note for Joe Biden

Actually Trump did leave a note for Biden, as reported in the tweet above. I suspect we'll find out soon what it said, or at least its tenor. Could be the only decent thing Trump did regarding this transition (but I wouldn't bet on it yet).

Update: Biden calls Trump's note "generous." Credit to Trump.
Update 2: Biden's press secretary just described the letter as "generous and gracious."

Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Trump Most Unpopular President in Gallup History

Yesterday Gallup released their final poll regarding Trump and his presidency. They wrote:

As President Donald Trump prepares to leave the White House, 34% of Americans approve of the job he is doing as president, the worst evaluation of his presidency. His 41% average approval rating throughout his presidency is four points lower than for any of his predecessors in Gallup's polling era. Trump's ratings showed a record 81-percentage-point average gap between Republicans and Democrats -- 11 points wider than the prior record. 

(emphasis mine)

From the same page, this shows how poorly Trump ranks historically -- dead last since Truman:

However, in a poll taken after the January 6th insurrection, 90% of Republicans polled approve of Trump's job performance(!):

Nearly nine in 10 Republicans approve of Trump’s job performance, according to the survey, a figure virtually unchanged from just ahead of the November contest. Eighty-nine percent of Republicans said they approved of Trump before the election, compared to 87% in the most recent poll.

Incredible. Even after Trump spent his entire term lying to the American people, even after he outrageously lied about the election results for two months, even after he incited an insurrection -- domestic terrorism -- and an attempted coup, almost all Republicans still support him.

This country has a serious problem, and it's called the Republican party. This is probably only the beginning of our problems. As Bret Stephens wrote in today's NY Times, in a column titled "Lincoln Knew in 1838 What 2021 Would Bring -- Before Jefferson Davis there was John C. Calhoun. What rougher beasts do Trump, Hawley and Cruz prefigure?"

Donald Trump is not a man of “the loftiest genius.” He is, as I’ve written before, a political arsonist who managed, in his inveterately asinine way, to burn down his own presidency while attempting to torch everyone and everything else. Neither is Josh Hawley nor Ted Cruz a lofty genius. They are credential-holding ideological grifters who lack the wit to see how easily they are seen through.

But the three are at least a hazy approximation of what the younger Lincoln most fears — men in the mold of Caesar or Napoleon who would sooner tear down than defend republican institutions in order to slake a thirst for glory. Before Jefferson Davis tore the federal government asunder, John C. Calhoun tried to nullify its power. What rougher beasts do Trump, Cruz and Hawley prefigure? For that matter, for what kind of Reichstag fire was the Capitol Hill insurrection merely a test run?

Monday, January 18, 2021

Who's Dividing the Country?

What some of us were saying in the comments of this post, if perhaps not quite as succinctly.

Saturday, January 16, 2021

Another Death at Trump's Riot

There was another death at the Capitol Riot on 1/6 that's just come to light, a woman named Roseanne Boyland who was crushed to death by the pro-Trump mob surging against the police. The NY Times has some video about it, including one that shows two people attempting CPR and then dragging her to safety. 

She's somewhere under this pile, slightly left of center. Except for the building and the hockey stick, this almost looks like something from the Battle of Agincourt, except there there was a bit of a sense of chivalry.

Via the NY Times.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

Nothing But a Loser

So Trump has been impeached for a second time.

This, and inciting a violent insurrection that overran Congress, is all that he will be remembered for. 

Nothing to do with the economy, with Israel, with whatever tiny victories his supporters will of course insist upon. They are all gone now, crushed into the ashe and mud of his pathologies, inanities and stupidities. 

Trump will be remembered as his worst possible nightmare: a pure, unadulterated loser, loser to Sleepy Joe.

Such poetic justice.

And he has finally made fools of his supporters too, of all of them, as he was bound to do from the very beginning it seems, from the very instant he insipidly declared an "American Carnage" at his inauguration, at the end of Obama's second term, without any evidence, without data, without any logic or reason whatsoever.

It was then Trump announced he wouldn't be tied down by reason or evidence. Smart people had learned that months earlier -- perhaps the earliest was when he made fun of a handicapped reporter, something Trump never had the decency to apologize for, and which, much more importantly, his supporters never made him apologize for. 

Then he insulted a judge merely for his Mexican heritage.

It painted Trump as weak -- but, for his supporters, tellingly, they saw only the kind of racist they were looking for.


Trump never gained a position of strength, except in the eyes of those who were weak themselves, who saw themselves as failures in the American maelstrom, in the vicious American contest aptly summarized by Brad Pitt at the end of the movie Killing Them Softly

"I'm living in America, and in America you're on your own."

That movie is from 2012. Has much changed? I think some things have. I think Trump was adamantly opposed to those things, as are all Republicans. But there was indeed much to be angry about, such as the grand collapse of the American middle class, their jobs sent overseas by both Republicans and Democrats, right under their noses, until before they knew it those jobs were gone and they were left driving trucks and working at McDonalds or Walmart and enlisting in the military, hoping anywhere to find employment with a bit of something above minimum wage with some health insurance and maybe 2 weeks paid vacation time a year. Or not. 

Despite all the Republicans telling the lower classes to pick themselves up by their bootstraps.

That wasn't me, of course. I had three college degrees and, since Newt Gingrich, was supposed to be happy sitting in a cubicle fielding 60 voice mail messages a day, and 8 meetings a day to keep the sky from falling in and 120 emails a day that all demanded an answer that very afternoon, 30 from three simultaneous girlfriends I was juggling for a few weeks there, until I could finally skip out at 6:30 pm to drink with a few well-placed colleagues at a pleasant wood-strewn New Jersey tavern a mile from our headquarters with my tie off just to let my chest muscles finally unknot. Weren't THOSE great times. They didn't last more than about a year, though.

I'm getting distracted here -- what am I trying to say? 

Just that I think Trump got what the hell he deserved, and more. 

Not enough, in fact. 

Trump has been a jerk from the very beginning. He's been happy to be a jerk. From the beginning. He's insulted America, the institution of the presidency, all degrees of normalcy and decency, all standards of class, and done so without any humor, without any good nature, without any intelligence, or character, or mirth, or tradition, or cleverness. 

Or anything. I'm reaching a point where I don't care so much what happens to the asshole. Just let him slither away under whatever rock he has left to go to, as long as the PGA won't host a golf tournament over it. 

Supposedly that loss enraged him more than being impeached, said a Twitter feed from Maggie Haberman or someone of her ilk. That's pleasant to know. Unlike most people, Trump makes it very easy to hate him. Always has.

Fishy, Smelly News

Year 2386 trivial question: who was the only United States* president to be impeached twice? 
*The United States was a large country in the era of nation-states occupying the mid-latitudes of North America from the years 1776 to 2032 CE, whose demise is widely agreed to have been precipitated by this same president. . 

There are a smattering of news stories out today that don't have a great deal of evidence behind them yet, but don't smell very good either. 
"Weeks before a mob of President Trump’s supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol, right-wing activist Ali Alexander told his followers he was planning something big for Jan. 6.

"Alexander, who organized the “Stop the Steal” movement, said he hatched the plan — coinciding with Congress’s vote to certify the electoral college votes — alongside three GOP lawmakers: Reps. Andy Biggs (Ariz.), Mo Brooks (Ala.) and Paul A. Gosar (Ariz.), all hard-line Trump supporters.

"'We four schemed up of putting maximum pressure on Congress while they were voting,' Alexander said in a since-deleted video on Periscope highlighted by the Project on Government Oversight, an investigative nonprofit. The plan, he said, was to 'change the hearts and the minds of Republicans who were in that body, hearing our loud roar from outside.'"
  • Why did petulant, gun-crazy Colorado Republican representative Lauren Boebert tweet information during the riot about the location of Speaker Nancy Pelosi? 

These were posted at 2:16 pm and 2:17 pm EST. Early on the morning of the riot she tweeted this:

What did she know about what was about to happen?
"One day before a pro-Trump mob stormed the Capitol, a Democratic lawmaker says, she saw colleagues leading groups on “reconnaissance” tours of the building.

"Rep. Mikie Sherrill (D-N.J.) made the startling claim in a Facebook Live broadcast on Tuesday night as she accused Republicans of inciting the pro-Trump mob that vandalized the Capitol and attacked police officers.

"Sherrill, a former Navy helicopter pilot, described seeing 'members of Congress who had groups coming through the Capitol that I saw on Jan. 5 for reconnaissance for the next day.'"

"Phone numbers belonging to two of Sen. Ted Cruz’s (R-TX) offices appeared to be listed as contact information in a note found in a truck belonging to Lonnie Coffman, who has been indicted for allegedly carrying unregistered firearms and 11 Molotov cocktails in that same vehicle during the pro-Trump insurrection last week."

  • Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) -- "AOC" -- said on Instagram Live last night that she had a "close encounter" during the riots last week where she thought she was going to die. She also "worried her own colleagues in Congress might divulge her location to the mob outside, putting her at risk for kidnapping or worse."
  • In Oregon, a Republican state representative was caught on video letting rioters into the statehouse as he left the building. He's since been stripped of his committee assignments, billed for damages and the Speaker of the State House is urging him to resign.

Tuesday, January 12, 2021

Trump Hasn't Learned a Damned Thing

...or is too craven to admit he has.

Again, for the psychopath: it's always someone else's fault.

Monday, January 11, 2021

A Day I Find Difficult to Summarize

Every time I think I'm about to start a post with what I'm thinking, instead of one with another shocking video or picture or quoting someone, I get weary and don't even start. We'll see how this one goes. 

The more time goes by, the more last Wednesday gets distilled, for me, to its essence and the more shocking it is -- the president of the United States incited a riot to overtake the Capitol and threaten the vice-president and Congressional lives in order to overturn a fair election that he manufactured an enormous lie about. 

I think that statement will be just as shocking in 20 years time, unless even more shocking events are to come in the next weeks, months and years. Weeks and months: my guess is probably not, even though the FBI is warning of extremist discussions of violence in DC and in all 50 state capitols between now and the inauguration. 

But my only reason for thinking that is that it's hard to imagine being so shocked again so quickly, which I realize is a kind of bias.  And because National Guard troops are rolling out -- up to 15,000 in DC soon -- to quell any uprisings. Trump seems truly emasculated at the moment with few of his dependable MAGA avenues left to him, and he's afraid to go on television either at the White House or before a reporter.

I still think he's a threat though, and it's truly disappointing Nancy Pelosi keeps giving Mike Pence 24 more hours to invoke the 25th Amendment, which I don't see him having the courage to do (even though there's the need), and she takes the weekend off of the impeachment effort when on Friday she keep telling us how dire the situation was. Perhaps her caucus was writing and rounding up the votes, when now the Democratic majority in the House is extremely thin (only 220 Democrats out of 435 members, I believe, a majority of just 3). But he still has the nuclear codes, the military commanders seemed to tell Pelosi that taking them away would be a military coup, and it's clearer than ever that he is deeply mentally ill. If you don't invoke the 25th Amendment now, after the worst act by an American president, when would you ever?

My own representative, Democrat Kurt Schrader, said last Friday he didn't support impeachment, calling pressure for it like a "lynching." Yes, he did. He has since apologized, and also now favors impeachment.  

If you have access, or enough free articles left this month, I thought Jennifer Senior's article in today's NY Times was very good, about how malignant narcissists always end up this way, in great tragedy, going down in flames, hurting everyone around them -- spouses, children, relatives, friends, colleagues, companies, governments, countries. She ended with

"You needn’t be a particularly astute observer of the Trump presidency to understand that his incendiary, hateful policies and rhetoric and mirthful disregard for the law would one day end in violence. But you needn’t be a particularly astute observer of character, either, to see that a man who feels no empathy, exploits ruthlessly, lies reflexively, seeks success at any cost and lives in terror of seeing it vanish would never go quietly."

Almost as shocking -- almost, but perhaps not quite -- was that over 100 Republicans voted for The Big Lie, the electoral fraud claim, after the riots had occurred and after they had all run and hid for their lives. This problem is probably much bigger than Trump. The Republican party deserves to die at the voter's hands, but we know that given red states voters most of its members won't lose their seats. Perhaps the current withdrawal of corporate political contributions will matter if their electorates don't care. Perhaps not, we'll see. But there is a bigger problem than Trump, and will be whether he comes back in some form or not.

As I saw more than one person write on Twitter, political scientists remind us that while the first putsch often fails, subsequent putsches often do not -- or the third, or fourth, or.... And once violence is used, the option of using it the next time might well seem less unthinkable by those who want to use it. And that's a very bad slope. 

I've gotten this far, so I'm going to stop here. I'm interested in what others are thinking. I'll try to catch up on comments of the last few days. Thanks for reading. 

Sunday, January 10, 2021

Another Death from January 6th

I hope to post something longer today about last Wednesday; until then--

Saturday, January 09, 2021

An Especially Good News Report on the Riot

Just a Representative on His Knees Cleaning Up the Capitol

After midnight after the riot at the Capitol, Kim spent an hour and a half on his knees cleaning up at the Rotunda. News story here.

Friday, January 08, 2021

Finally Stating the Obvious, A Little Too Late

From the article, which quotes an anonymous administration official:
"I went through Access Hollywood, Charlottesville — all of these insane things. There’s some degree of growing accustomed to the craziness. It’s not like my heart is racing, like, Oh, God, how am I supposed to react to this? It’s just more that I’m depressed. For people who devoted years of their lives to dealing with the insanity in an attempt to advance a policy agenda that you believe in, all of that has been wiped out. The legacy of the Trump administration is going to be that the president sparked an insurrection and people died because he tried his best to not abide by the Constitution and the tradition of a peaceful transition of power that’s been the norm since our founding. Nothing else is even going to be a side note."

Thursday, January 07, 2021

Someone Impersonated Donald Trump on Twitter

These #deepfakes are getting more convincing than ever.

The Republican Elites Cheering the Violence

No, not Proud Boys or MAGAists or Great Lovable Patriots, but Republican elites.

From WaPo:

When Yesterday's Mob Broke Through

The Calm After the Storm, For Now

“These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots,” signing off, “Remember this day forever!”

This seems to be a paraphrase of the tweet that got Trump temporarily banned from Twitter, and no wonder. Excusing the violence, celebrating the violence, still lying about the election -- I hope Twitter keeps him permanently off their platform. Facebook is, with Instagram, until at least after the Inauguration. 

But then Trump said, in a statement tweeted out by an aide at 3:49 am EST shortly after Pence certified the election for Biden:

"Even though I totally disagree with the outcome of the election, and the facts bear me out, nevertheless there will be an orderly transition on January 20th."

"I have always said we would continue our fight to ensure that only legal votes were counted. While this represents the end of the greatest first term in presidential history, it’s only the beginning of our fight to Make America Great Again."

(This is CNN's paraphrase.)

So Trump still insists on his big lie, and adds another one -- "the greatest first term in presidential history" -- proving yet again he is 100% delusional and a psychopath.

According to Axios, Trump was nearly unreachable:

The statement was the product of hours of efforts by aides trying to get him to grapple with reality.


Behind the scenes: The president's final days in office will be lonely ones. Some stalwart aides and confidants — after years of enduring the crazy and trying to modulate the chaos — have given up trying to communicate with him, considering him mentally unreachable.

Why his more reasonable aides, the vice-president, the cabinet or Congress is letting a "mentally unreachable" men have access to the military and nuclear weapons is a puzzle. (Added: some are.) He needs to get the 25th Amendment or impeached and convicted, quick, but the latter obviously isn't going to happen. (Maybe he was threatened with the 25A last night if he didn't shape up, who knows.) Though I highly suspect that any military or nuclear threat from Trump has been taken care of, by now if not far earlier, with all kind of safety checks in place before Trump can do anything military-wise. 

Mike Pence actually did the right thing. So did Mitch McConnell. It only took them four years of servile obedience to Trump, so they get no credit. 

There are still over 100 Republican seditionists in the House and a few Senators -- not sure of the exact number, but the most notable are Josh Hawley of Missouri and Ted Cruz of Texas. (Cruz actually sent out a fundraising email during the violence in the Capitol.) 

Neither has said anything on Twitter today. But both seem after the fascist demographic for the 2024 election. Cruz seems too personally repellent to be elected president (and barely won in Texas last time), but Hawley is more suave and, ultimately, probably more dangerous.  

Now I gotta get something done today, since I spent yesterday doomscrolling. I hope to hear your comments.

Wednesday, January 06, 2021

Twitter, Others Crack Down on Trump

Finally. Twitter said elsewhere that if Trump doesn't delete these tweets himself, his account won't be unlocked. Will he have too much pride and anger to do that? My guess is yes, for about 24 hours. Then he will miss the attention too much. And he only has 14 days left in office.

Now where will he whine, Parler?

Democrats Win Senate, Win the Trifecta

The Senate is now 50-50 Democrat/Republican, but VP Kamala Harris has a tie-breaking vote. Still, 60 votes are usually required to pass legislation in the Senate, due to filibuster rules.

Since Trump was elected, Democrats have taken the House, the Presidency and now the Senate. The Republican party is in shambles, because they followed Trump, either to satisfy their inner-fascist or because they are too afraid to stand up to him, or both. He's had his moments, especially with three Supreme Court appointments (aided by McConnell's corruption in the process), but Trump has spoiled most of what he's touched. I don't think there's much doubt he will be remembered as the worst president in US history. Do you?

Rep. Mike Gallagher, Republican from Wisconsin, Trapped

Extraordinary. On Twitter Maggie Haberman of the NY Times wrote that Trump has been asked to call for peace and calm in stronger terms, and refused.

Another Incredible Scene From Trump's "Law and Order"

What Could Possibly Have Been the Difference??

Capital Breached

Now they're inside the Capital. This is so unbelievable I don't know what else to do besides blog it. Hopefully I'm not your primary source. 

They're Breaking Through the Barricades

Protestors Storming Capital

Believe it or not, this is happening now. Protestors are also scaling scaffolding on the Capital building set up for the inauguration. 

Guns are banned in DC, but you can't tell me there aren't guns in a lot of the backpacks these rioters are wearing.

It was Trump who fired these people up today, who said there would be a march on Congress. He called for this. He called for an insurrection. 

I suspect all of Congress will be evacuated before the day is through.  

Kelly Loeffler: Gone

 She and her corruption are gone, with no option to call for a recount.

She never won an election. Last night, Joe Biden's chief of staff tweeted this:

Tuesday, January 05, 2021

Pence: It's Now Whether There's Disgrace, It's How Much

What's going to happen tomorrow (Wednesday the 6th, since I'm behind most of you), and how much disgrace will Vice-President Pence bring upon himself?

The answer isn't zero.   

Trump thinks the vice-president can single-handedly overrule the votes of tens of millions of Americans on nothing more than his personal opinion:
Of course, he doesn't have that power. The VP is just the envelope opener, who hands them to the counters, who total up the certified electoral votes and announces the winner, who we already know will be Joe Biden. 

Pence, who has been the Brown-noser in Chief for 4 years, is said to be in a politically perilous position, and good for that -- it's all of his own creation, for being...a brown-noser all this time. David Frum of The Atlantic says Pence's career is finished. Let's certainly hope so.

This just in: Pence tries to have it both ways. Because of course he does -- he's Mike Pence.
NY Times: Pence Said to Have Told Trump He Lacks Power to Change Election Result -- A day before he presides over a joint session of Congress to ratify Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s victory, the vice president tried to lower the president’s expectations while seeking ways to mollify him.
According to the article:
Even as he sought to make clear that he does not have the power Mr. Trump seems to think he has, Mr. Pence also indicated to the president that he would keep studying the issue up until the final hours before the joint session of Congress begins at 1 p.m. Wednesday, according to the people briefed on their conversation.

One option being considered, according to a person close to Mr. Trump, was having Mr. Pence acknowledge the president’s claims about election fraud in some form during one or more of the Senate debates about the results from particular states before the certification. Mr. Pence will preside over those debates.

Mr. Trump has been cajoling Mr. Pence in public and private to find a way to use his role on Wednesday to give credence to his unfounded claims — rejected by the states and in scores of court cases and backed by no evidence — that the election was stolen from him through widespread fraud.

The president has told several people privately that he would rather lose with people thinking it was stolen from him than that he simply lost, according to people familiar with his remarks.

Mr. Pence has spent hours with parliamentarians and lawyers in recent days. His allies said they expect him to carry out his constitutional duties on Wednesday.
“The way Trump is phrasing it, there’s no merit,” said Edward B. Foley, director of the election law program at Ohio State University. “What Trump is asking for is control of the outcome that will lead to him being declared the president. That is definitely not within Pence’s power.”

But Mr. Foley said Mr. Pence would be able to add some “drama to the theater,” if he so chooses. As an example, Mr. Foley said the vice president could present “rival” packages of electoral votes for some states and force Congress to debate both simultaneously.

“We know the end result,” he said, “we just don’t know when we will get there or what procedure we will take to get there.”
If any of this happens, history will see Pence as a milquetoast fool, but above all a traitor to his country, because of course there is no evidence of any fraud, and Pence clearly lacks the courage to say that to the President. And he wants to run for president in 2024. How's he going to stand up to any foreign leader who's looking to bamboozle him? I think David Frum is right. Americans don't want a weasel for president.  

Monday, January 04, 2021

Finally Some Proven Fraud

Sunday, January 03, 2021

Prosecute Trump

In Saturday's phone call to the Georgia Secretary of State, Trump tried to illegally steal a state's electoral votes. There is simply no other way you can view it. 

Trump tried to cajole, smooth-talk, threaten, intimidate, and lie his way to getting what he wanted from Brad Raffensperger. Raffensperger deserves medals from the highest sources for his calm but determined manner, standing up for U.S. democracy. Trump has clearly fallen for every conspiracy theory that flowed into his Twitter feed, indicating a very weak mind for a man who is supposed to be the leader of one of the strongest nations in the world. 

Is it any wonder the Russians have had their way surveilling our military secrets for months under Trump's so-called leadership? Is it any wonder they were able to influence the 2016 election through the large U.S. Internet platforms, with the acquiescence of the Trump campaign? Is it any wonder the coronavirus has devastated this country and that the vaccine rollout is now utterly failing? Is it at all surprising our economy is in shambles with someone as stupid, as immoral and as unethical as Trump at its helm?

Trump is an absolute failure of a president and as a man who, as many of us saw even before the 2016 election, had absolutely no business ever being considered for president in the first place. But too many badly blinkered, blind people saw only his fake media construct and a character he played on television and were not capable enough to differentiate the fake man from real life.

Well: we fucking told you, people. Now look at what you have done.

Trump has half-destroyed this country, in four short years, morally more than physically -- which is far, far worse. Republicans, utter cowards who never deserve to come anywhere near power ever again, aided and abetted him at every turn, scared he might say 'boo' and they'd fall over into bunches of rotten piles. (They rotted anyway.) As did 80 million reactionary, unthinking fascists who didn't care who they elected, as long as he put the liberals they were trained to hate, by 30 years of talk radio, in their place. People who are comforted by mere ideology, who could see nothing better possible in life, and who hated others who did see what's possible. They detested them, because they think they cannot meet such possibilities, and in fear they found it easier to turn around and attack those who were moving, however difficult, at whatever cost, towards the light. They thought their violence made them happy, even as they glimpsed deeply down that their faked personas weren't really right. After all, even the Devil can recite Bible Verses.  

Well, this is the animal you have let loose on the world, you dull, shallow, empty thinkers, and the poison that constantly sheds off him is not easily gathered up and retained. America will probably never be the same ever again. And yes, that makes me extremely angry. I hope that as soon as this uncivilized, hoofed beast is out of office, Biden's new DOJ will investigate him, indict him in a huge collar for the crimes he committed yesterday, and the others we don't even know about yet. Because the truth always comes out. The presidency cannot be run like a NY crime family. The president isn't a mob boss. This country isn't a joke, at least not yet.

Release an executive order to undo any (illegal) self-pardon. Then prosecute Trump to the fullest extent of the law.

The Newly Elected Hypocrites

They were sworn in today--none objected. Hypocrites.

Trump’s Full Phone Call

The Post has published Trump's full phone call with Georgia election officials. Listen to the audio and read the transcript.

In the hour-long conversation on Dec. 2, President Trump repeatedly tried to get Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger to alter the outcome of the presidential vote.

By Amy Gardner and Paulina Firozi

Download The Washington Post app.

Audio Clips From Trump's Phone Call to Georgia

From WaPo, here is four and a half minutes of Trump begging and cajoling and threatening the Georgia secretary of state and his lawyer to reverse the Georgia election results in favor of Trump:

WaPo has a recording of the full hour-long conversation.

Trump Calls Georgia SOS to Give Him the State

Update 10:20 am: Here's the WaPo article.

I was just writing a post about January 6th when I got this notification from the Washington Post on my phone:

What the hell? This is absolutely crazy. This is absolutely fascist. No one can just somehow reevaluate the election results and reverse the voter's choice. 

It's difficult to see what other details about this could come out that would somehow justify such a call. We'll see what the full WaPo article says -- I don't see anything up yet (10:14 am PST), but this sounds insane, like 25th Amendment insane.