SocraticGadfly: 10/27/19 - 11/3/19

November 01, 2019

Tank, Warriors Tank!

I know it's the Golden State Warriors' first year in their new Ozone Arena, or whatever, I mean the Chase Center, in San Francisco. BUT ... since Steph Curry officially needs surgery for his broken hand and will be out three months? (And that's a minimum; he'll be "reassessed" at that time.)

It is totally the right decision.

Yeah, coach Steve Kerr may not like it, but he was a GM in a previous incarnation, and he knows it's right, too. Whether the fans in the West Bay accept it or not? Well, the Dubs rolled the dice on leaving Oakland.

Anyway, it's right.

Klay Thompson may be out the full year. Kevon Looney is out for how long with his neuropathy, and how effective when he gets back? D'Angelo Russell, in the short sample size of this year, isn't fitting in well. In the same short sample size, Draymond Green is bricking threes and actually playing fewer minutes per game than last year. (And, he injured a finger Friday night. Warriors are waiting to see how bad this one is.) We'll see if he has more in the tank as a leading producer and not a complementary player with Klay out, now Steph out, too, and KD and Iggy both gone, along with Shaun Livingston.

When you're expecting Willie Cauley-Stein to be some sort of boost with Looney out? You're not a playoff team. You've got the third-worst plus-minus in the league so far.

Tank now, let the rest of the West beat you up, and get near the top of the lottery draw.

The Warriors scoffed Thursday, after Curry's injury was known, but before the need for surgery was.

And contra a semi-conspiratorial Twitter correspondent who said he could heal much faster, Red Satan's Stefania Bell says no — assuming a plate or other hardware had to be implanted — three months is not unreasonable, especially when rehab, not just for the hand in general, but for basketball-specific activities, is included.

(Update on that, Nov. 11: Kerr said he expects Curry to play sometime this season, which could be seen as both an indication that the Dubs weren't overselling the severity of the injury AND that they're more open to tanking. Given that he won't even have the pins removed for another month, yeah, San Francisco dumb fuck, it's a real three-month injury. I mean, the Celts have ruled out Gordon Hayward for six weeks with just a single broken bone in his left hand.)

I took the Dubs at face value, and since my Yahoo fantasy league doesn't have an IR setting, since the NBA doesn't, I dropped him.

Plus, per Brian Windhorst, you can tank under the guise of "checking out the youngsters." You can also trade Russell to a non-tanking team who might have dire need of him.

Lies James W. Loewen told me

Lies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got WrongLies My Teacher Told Me: Everything Your American History Textbook Got Wrong by James W. Loewen
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Another book I forgot I had read before. New review is here at top, and it dropped it a star. Old review is below.

Not Loewen’s best. Not even close.

First, credit where credit is due. His chapters on high school history and its textbooks neglecting class-based issues and what he calls anti-racism are spot on. The chapter on racism is generally good, though it has problems here and there.

BUT ….

Most of his claim of pre-Viking contact with the New World by Europeans, Phoenicians or Chinese is overstated to way overstated. See Wiki's page for more.

West Africans by accident I might buy, just maybe. The idea that Phoenicians circumnavigated Africa is still not settled, and Herodotus’ story of it is a jumbled mess. I have no problem with buying that their Carthaginian successors sailed westward through the Straits of Gibraltar and into the Atlantic, visiting the various island systems later claimed by Spain or Portugal, and perhaps getting as far as the mouth of the Niger River. But circumnavigation? Color me skeptical.

Books written about the Chinese sailing to the New World? I’ve read one, that by Gavin Menzies, his 1421 book; laughable. (It was written after this book.) Other than in late Yuan, then early Ming times, the Chinese are never recorded as being either that good at, or that interested in, overseas mariner trips. And they're never at all recorded as sailing eastward to anywhere east of Japan or southeastward anywhere past the Philippines.

The Polynesian-South American connection is the only one that is even halfway realistic. At least Loewen has the honesty to admit many of these theories are ultimately based on racist ideas that lack credence.

And I had NEVER before heard claims that American Indians visited the Roman Empire. Given the above, I’ll take that with a HUGE grain of salt. And, rightly so. I have learned how that claim arose.

How Loewen got to be this GULLIBLE, I don’t know. It’s no wonder that Howard Zinn, whose “People’s History” is itself historically problematic, so enthusiastically blurbs this book.

Loewen in body text, outside of footnotes does rate many as low, but the Afrocentric and Phoenician ones as “moderate.”

I’m a leftist myself who rejects Eurocentric bullshit, but I also reject non-Eurocentric bullshit being peddled just to reject Eurocentric bullshit. And, he references “They Came Before Columbus” in his bibliography, a horrid, non-historical Afrocentric book. He also references a book called “Twenty Cases Suggestive of Reincarnation.”

From there, he uncritically repeats legends that Columbus was not Italian, that he was a Jew, etc. Let's look at all of these to refute each one.

He actually didn’t speak “Italian” because he likely spoke Ligurian, which is considered a separate language not a dialect. Well, Chaucer didn't speak "English" only a little over a century earlier. Two centuries earlier, Dante spoke "Tuscan," not "Italian," by a reasonable argument. He didn't write anything in Ligurian for a variety of reasons; as for the Jew claim and writing, we have no writing of his in Ladino, we know that and the thinnest of speculations otherwise.

In claiming Columbus was really appreciated, he cites his second voyage of 1493. So? Doesn’t change that he still died neglected in 1506, because he clearly had not gotten to China or India. Loewen next tries to explain away Columbus’ size-of-earth geography errors by claiming he wasn’t necessarily sailing for “Cathay” or similar at all. Totally untrue. He lobbied both Ferdinand and Isabella — and the king of Portugal — to support his journey to precisely the known lands of the Far East, and both countries (taking Spain as one country) rejected him because they figured he was underestimating the size of the Earth. Spain finally funded him after the Reconquista was done and it had a few spare dollars, but the monarchs sure as hell didn’t fund a voyage to “whatever I find,” but a voyage to the known Far East.

If not gullibleness, this is pandering of some sort.

Beyond all that, if this is about "Europeans bad," etc.? Well, Han Chinese have their own history of colonization, from the Miao and other non-Han of the Yunnan area to Xinjiang and Tibet.

Next chapter? Two pages in, he repeats the largely discredited legend of Marranos being a major part of Spanish settlement of New Mexico. Were there a FEW conversos? Yes. A bunch, let alone unconverted Jews? No. Most these people are Adventist Protestant Christians. And even if some went to Mexico, fewer yet moved 1,000 miles north.

Surprisingly, on the Pilgrims not landing in the theoretically intended Virginia, Loewen does NOT mention the idea that they ran out of beer. And yes, that's been postulated.

There’s other errors. Yes, the Dutch build Fort Nassau on the Hudson in 1614. They abandoned it again in 1618; it’s unclear whether the Pilgrims knew that or not.

He also ignores that, among Pilgrim critiques, Oñate was probably the first European to celebrate a Thanksgiving on US soil, in addition to pre-Pilgrim Native American ones.

His chapter on American Indians over-nice-ifies them. The Aztec and Inca empires, and the non-Aztec Indians who supported Cortez, are immediate refutations.

He hints at accepting at least parts of the Iroquois Confederation being behind the US Constitution legend. The eagle on the Great Seal? Symbol of many European nations, as well. And ignores that Franklin argued against it.

Chief Seattle’s “letter” or “speech”? Of doubtful authenticity.


Not bad, but definitely not his best. In "Lies Across America," Loewen writes short chapters of no more than 7-8 pages about historic sites and monuments and what they get wrong, and does well. In "Sundown Towns," he writes a one-subject book on how sundown towns developed in America and still persist today, with a LOT of good information.

Both are good, and the former, debunking book doesn't get too polemical.

However, this book does, and sometimes gets things wrong, or at least distorted, itself, as part of the polemics. I talk about lengths above, precisely because I think the longer chapters in this book give Loewen too much free rein.

A few specifics:
1. He goes overboard on how negatively he portrays Columbus
2. He partially repeats a refuted myth of how the Iroquois Confederation allegedly influenced the structure of the US Constitution.
3. He claims "OK" is probably of Indian (Native American) etymology, when, among serious study, none of the leading theories for its origin claim that.
4. And strangely, he seems to let the Russians off lightly on their treatment of native Americans, when in reality, they were worse than the white descendants of British settlers, or the French, Spanish or any other European group. Indeed, other than mentioning the Inuit and Aleut having a separate migration to North America, Alaska is generally ignored by him and Hawaii entirely so.

And, the process of putting this all on paper led me to knock this down from 4 to 3 stars. The man is an academic historian, and should know better on the items above, especially 2-4.

View all my reviews

Fortunately, as noted midway through the renewed review, I've become a more skeptical leftist than I was 7 years ago at the time of the first review.

And, going beyond the second-round review, the book has other problems yet.

First, "They Came Before Columbus" is racist on multiple grounds. The author, of at least partially African ancestry, perpetuates myths about sub-Saharan Africans, in part. No, they don't all look alike on stereotypical "Nubian" features. Second, it's racism; Loewen won't go that far in even a footnote. But it is, and no, SJW snowflakes, racism isn't entirely a "privilege" based mindset. It's easier to be openly racist if you can punch down rather than up, but racism stems out of xenophobia partially driven by evolutionary biology.

Can blacks be racist? Yes? Are they? Yes. The same is also true for American Indians. Both have "punched sideways" against one another more publicly, but they've also punched up.

Second, Loewen's lucky I didn't 1-star him for citing a book on reincarnation as a source. (Sadly, when it came out, the august AMA was more more credulous about reincarnation than I think, and hope, it is today.)

Third, going beyond point 4 from my first review (the second sentence was added at the second review), Loewen's lies focus on Anglo America. I'm now wondering (as I have a copy) if "Lies Across America" similarly understates things like Hispanic-based lies about American Indians. Or American Indian lies on tribal lands.

Fourth, to follow up on a point from my re-reading, and tying to point 1? American Indians weren't Rousselian "noble savages." The Sioux Sun Dance was self-inflicted, and really not much worse than the most severe flagellations of Catholic Penitents. We can set it aside. But, Aztecs ripping still beating hearts out of live humans? Or death by torture of being tied to a staked anthill? Europe had nothing like it. And, although slaves were not generally sold or traded, and since they were enslaving each other and thus didn't develop racist-based theories to justify slavery, American Indians indeed enslaved each other more than Loewen would have the reader infer. And, in some cases, slaves WERE traded and slavery was made hereditary. And, in the ultimate grisly story of conspicuous consumption, among some Pacific tribes, slaves were allegedly killed at potlatches. (Google returns more than 500K hits.)

Fifth, based on a pamphlet-level book, "Lies My Teacher Told Me About Christopher Columbus," that was apparently extracted from this book, Loewen seems to have a "thing" for proving "In 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue" myths so wrong that he'll grasp at straws. Based on editorial review at Goodreads, it appears he doubles down on, and even firms up his support for, all the untruths noted above.

October 31, 2019

High-speed rail signs a contract?
We don't need no steenking vacuous contracts

It's "nice" of Brains to think about me on Texas' high speed rail, mentioning that the Texas Central Railway has signed a multibillion dollar construction contract, but, as I blogged several weeks ago, per Jim Schutze, the real real estate grifting may not be out in Roans Prairie (though we shouldn't ignore that) but in downtown Dallas. There's also good evidence that there is plenty of good old capitalist lying on ride count estimates. That's not just me that says that, but at the link, a lot of people who have tracked this issue.

Given that TCR has insisted it will be entirely private, and that, re those ride count overcounts, I still say that they're running a bad route, instead of doing what I said from the start, following Texas 6 to have an intermediate stop IN College Station, not some fucking grifting bit of rural real estate, plus another stop in Waco.

Beyond that? That contract signing means nothing, for a couple of big reasons.

One, I see it as an attempt to buffalo either the Texas Lege away from tightening eminent domain law (it gave such tightening semi-serious consideration this year), or else buffalo state courts away from adverse rulings.

Two, such contracts mean nothing. I lived most the previous decade in Dallas' Best Southwest suburbs, just north of Red Oak, which is in turn just north of Waxahachie.

Decades ago, a number of contractors and subcontractors signed contracts to work on this thing called ...

The Superconductor Super Collider.

There's a big ditch north side of Waxahachie today from all that contract work. No massive subatomic particles to be found.

October 30, 2019

Texas Progressives say Who's Your Halloween Daddy?

The Texas Progressive Alliance reminds you that Halloween is Friday. The two scariest costumes available are Michael Quinn Sullivan and Dennis Bonnen, with either one trying to look sympathetic.

Even better, since both are two-faced, you just use the same mask and flip it inside out and back again.

Stay warm after that chilling thought if you, like yours truly, is up in North Texas and enjoy this week’s roundup, and our sympathies to students at A-M Commerce. Speaking of ...

Greenville-Commerce shooting

This shooting shows a lot of societal issues beyond two obvious ones. ALL of these need to be addressed, starting with gun control. The rise of the Nones will address the #ThoughtsAndPrayers vacuous piety.

Texas politics

At the Dallas Observer, Stephen Young reports that Gohmert Pyle claims to know who the Ukraine whistleblower is. Young adds that Gohmert, who he says would be Reddit's r/TheDonald if it were a living thing, was among the Spartans under Matt Gaetz who charged the House's secure hearing room — and later ordered pizza.

In a trifecta, Young notes that Big John Cornyn's ideas for gun control don't actually include guns.

Off the Kuff says farewell to soon to be former state House Speaker Bonnen, brought low by his dumb decision to trust "Mucus" Sullivan and his own trash mouth.

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban supports the third-party and independent candidates lawsuit over HB 2504. A federal judge's hearing on the plaintiff's move to enjoin the state from collecting filing fees from candidates for third-party nominations is Oct. 31. I'll have an update, probably with some sort of analysis.


Big D and suburbs continue to recover from 10 tornadoes.


Yours truly reviews "Big Wonderful Thing" and finds that, while it's big, it ain't so much wonderful as it is kind of boring.

When it comes to things like re-routing petroleum pipelines, the Observer shows that the final privilege is that of capitalism.

The Trib reports on senior citizens facing college student debt.

The TPA congratulates Noah Horwitz for passing his bar exam.

The Texas Signal reads the Census report on income inequality in Texas. 

Nonsequiteuse reviews the Astros front office debacle.

The Daily Texan decries UT's lack of action against professors who have been accused of sexual misconduct with students.

Juanita finds new reasons to dislike Sen. John Cornyn.

 Sanford Nowlin is right there with her. 

Their dual losses mean Oklahoma and Texas can both say sayonara to the College Football Playoff even as Austin disgruntlement with Tom Herman increases.


On his weekly 2020, Brains writes about Greens and other third parties' kerfuffles.  That's as Green candidate Howie Hawkins gets the SPUSA nomination.

SocraticGadfly does his alt-history schtick again and says imagine a world that never had American Indians. (Contra Brains, there's no reason to be so PC as to cross out "American Indians and replace that with "Indigenous Americans."A plurality of the people prefer American Indian, including activists like Russell Means, a former leader of the ... American Indian Movement.)

G. Elliott Morris examines the value of 2020 general election polls at this time.

Jared Beck's nutter DNC fraud lawsuit is officially dead by appellate court. I've updated my old blog post.

October 29, 2019

Mark Cuban supports third party vote rights in Texas

From an email press release by the Center for Competitive Democracy, the outfit backing the lawsuit by Greens, Libertarians, third parties and independents against Texas' restrictive ballot access laws plus the new filing fees of HB 2504, as reported by me earlier.

This intro and any body notes in italics, press release text in normal type.

Dallas-based entrepreneur Mark Cuban is speaking up in support of Texas voters in advance of a federal court hearing on October 31, 2019 that will determine whether a constitutional challenge to the state’s restrictive ballot access laws may proceed. The court will also decide whether Texas may enforce newly-enacted ballot access requirements that threaten to limit voter choice in the 2020 election cycle. HB 2504, the legislation imposing the new requirements, took effect on September 1, 2019. As construed by Secretary of State Ruth R. Hughs, HB 2504 requires that all candidates seeking the nomination of a ballot-qualified minor political party either pay a filing fee or submit a nomination petition by December 9, 2019 to appear on Texas’s 2020 general election ballot. A group of voters, candidates and political parties are challenging the new requirements as part of a lawsuit alleging that several provisions of the Texas Election Code violate their First and Fourteenth Amendment rights.

Per my update of that original blog post, Hughs' response to the plaintiffs request for an injunction on filing fees was so non-responsive it looked to be written by Ken Paxton.

Prior to the enactment of HB 2504, ballot-qualified minor parties were entitled to place their nominees on the general election ballot after nominating them at their self-funded conventions in the spring of the election year. Under HB 2504, all candidates who seek a minor party’s nomination must now comply with the same filing fee or nomination petition requirements as candidates seeking to appear on the primary election ballot. The plaintiffs allege that because they do not participate in the taxpayer-funded primary election, Texas has no legitimate interest in imposing the new requirements.

The United States District Court in Austin will hear oral argument on the plaintiffs’ motion seeking to prevent Secretary Hughs from enforcing HB 2504 against them in the 2020 election cycle, as well as the defendants’ motion to dismiss the case. The plaintiffs allege that the burdens imposed by the new requirements are so severe, and the time permitted for complying with them so short – barely more than three months after HB 2504 took effect – that they will be excluded from Texas’s 2020 general election unless the court grants them relief.

Cuban, who co-stars on ABC’s “Shark Tank” and owns the Dallas Mavericks among many other ventures, issued the following statement in support of the legal challenge:

I believe in Texas Exceptionalism and the value we place on independent thinking. We want the best of Texas on our ballots, not just those that fall within the party system. For these reasons I am supporting the challenge to HB 2504.

Oliver Hall, founder of the non-profit Center for Competitive Democracy, which represents the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, said he was “pleased that Cuban is speaking up on behalf of Texas voters who want more meaningful choices on the ballot.”

Personally, I'm no more a fan of the myth of Texas Exceptionalism than I am that of American Exceptionalism. But, this issue falls partly under "the enemy of my enemy is my friend."

In addition to the new requirements that HB 2504 imposes on minor parties’ candidates, the lawsuit challenges the requirements that minor parties and independent candidates must meet to become ballot qualified, including the large number of handwritten voter signatures they must submit on paper nomination petitions in a limited period of time, as well as the restrictions on when nomination petitions may be circulated, which voters are eligible to sign them, and the deadlines for filing nomination petitions. 

In 2020, the challenged provisions require minor parties to obtain 83,717 valid signatures on paper nomination petitions in only 75 days. Independent candidates for statewide office must obtain the same number in as few as 30 days, if there is a run-off primary for the office they seek. Independent candidates for president need to collect 89,692 valid signatures in just 69 days. 

The plaintiffs – Mark Miller, Michele Gangnes, Scott Copeland, Laura Palmer, Tom Kleven, Andy Prior, America’s Party of Texas, Constitution Party of Texas, Green Party of Texas and Libertarian Party of Texas – allege that the cost of obtaining the required signatures will exceed $600,000 in 2020, largely because Texas’s nomination petition procedure is obsolete. Texas first adopted that procedure in 1905, and it has not been significantly updated or improved in the 114 years since.

Under HB 2504, candidates seeking a minor party’s nomination for statewide office also must pay a filing fee of $5,000 or submit a nomination petition with 5,000 valid signatures by December 9, 2019. The law imposes similar, but lesser, filing fees and signature requirements for district and local offices.

This is what Hughs gets most wrong. HB 2504 only requires the actual nominees to pay the fees. And I think CCD's press release is misphrasing this, as that is part of the injunction request. (I've asked for this to be clarified. Stand by.)

By contrast, Texas guarantees ballot access to the two major parties by means of taxpayer-funded primary elections. Texas has also adopted electronic procedures, at taxpayer expense, which minimize the burden of administering the major parties’ primary elections.

The plaintiffs assert claims for the violation of their rights to cast their votes effectively, to speak and associate for political purposes, and to the equal protection of law. The lawsuit, captioned Miller v. Hughs, No. 1:19-cv-00700, names Secretary of State Hughs and Deputy Secretary of State Jose A. Esparza as defendants in their official capacities, and seeks to enjoin the state from enforcing the challenged provisions.

The hearing on plaintiffs’ motion is at 9:00 AM on October 31, 2019 in the United States Courthouse, Courtroom #4, Fifth Floor, 501 West 5th Street, Austin, Texas.

Another blogroll update

I had made several additions to my August blogroll update post.

Deleted Liberal Values Blog; Ron Chusid's wasn't posting there any more and I found out on Book of Face he drinks the Tulsi Kool-Aid.

Washington Babylon has gotten deleted. On foreign policy issues, I've got several serious options on the blogroll, not Andrew Stewart misinterpreting the Chinese economy to take a whack at Bannon, and if Ken Silverstein has time for multiple Eliot Sperber meme of the day (this one says it all, as pictured at left) and bad poetry bits but, beyond his own occasional investigative journalism pieces, if he doesn't have need for other submissions, fine.

And dude, I'm sure as hell not chipping into a fundraiser for all of that.

The fact that Counterpunch a fair chunk of his poetry leads me to see a certain degree of connectedness and Peter Principle inside "mainstream" left-liberal and leftist media, while I'm here and punching up.

I'll admit that this may be a bit envy as well as frustration. I'm OK with admitting that.

I just wish some outside-the-box journo with higher name rank than me would do more to call out Michael Tracey or the other allegedly outside-the-box journos who peddle the Tulsi Gabbard Kool-Aid.

Added: LobeLog, which I had seen Albert Kim post about, and The Turbulent World of Middle East Soccer, from a poster on LobeLog. The first is all foreign policy; the second is a mix of that and its namesake, about which I don't really care. Both tackle for pol from a generally left-liberal and non-Washington bipartisan consensus angle.

Deleted Lawyers, Guns and Money, only days after adding it. It's interesting, often insightful, outside the straight politics world. BUT, when Scott Lemieux (and I don't give a flying fuck if he IS a poli sci prof you tribalist commenters) makes that "Stein vote was really a Trump vote" bullshit claim? Not following you folks, even if halfway interesting otherwise.

I'll admit I may have been a little bit trolling to get that reaction, but it was as much trolling to where Scott and most the others there stand within Dem presidential preferences (NONE of the proprietors, AFAIK, likes Bernie) as it was outside the duopoly. Blech. They opened themselves up to that. Little did I know that, in matters of politics, this is simply a new Daily Kos. That's the best descriptor of it I can think of.

Deleted Texas Monitor, which bills itself as independent journalism. I didn't immediately Google their founders enough to see the wingnut background right away.

On thin ice? Black Agenda Report, whose executive editor, Glen Ford, has started more openly guzzling the Tulsi Kool-Aid ever since Bruce Dixon died. And Danny Haiphong, who is running there more since Bruce's passing, is even worse on other issues.

Also, John Fleck's Inkstain. As soon as I can find a better blog about Colorado River water issues, especially after reading his craptacular first book, he's gone.

Another White Atheist in Columbia, if she starts blogging more often, at the length she does and other issues, won't be here much longer.

October 28, 2019

Alleged hard-hitting journos give Gabbard pass
on Palestine, Middle East, Kashmir

I've already tackled Michael Tracey and his Ron Paul-tard background for his reason for running Tulsi Gabbard up the flagpole and uncritically supporting her.

So, who now?

By name, Matt Taibbi, Aaron Maté and Mark Ames off the top of my head. We maybe surely throw in Max Blumenthal while we're at it, though I don't follow him as much. I'm just taking a guess and a gander. Feel free to nominate others yourselves. I've started calling them outside-the-box stenos, reflecting on their self-presentation of thinking outside the mainstream media box on foreign policy, while at the same time engaging in their own form of groupthink stenography, often twosiderism based, trying to "own" #TheResistance, as I've already called them out for doing on Ukraine.. Zack Beauchamp at Vox, on the new Gabbard vs Hillary Clinton dust-up, calls them anti-imperialist leftists.

I prefer my own less neutral term. One big reason? I'm an anti-imperialist myself, without being a steno, a fucking idiot, and for all I know about them, maybe Seth Rich conspiracy theorists.

Also of note? The piece is generally good overall, though I have some differences with Zack on chemical warfare in Syria, as far as who done it, and who claims who done it — no, not all conspiracy theorists, Zack. Other than that, though, especially near the end where he gets into "horseshoe theory" being extended into foreign policy, he's got some points. He could have gone even further down this road, pointing out the perils of #twosiderism.

Per the header, Taibbi's already done a softball interview with her where he didn't ask about the first two issues.

And, while she may have been doing National Guard duty in the middle of August and been unavailable for interviews, none of the three has tweeted a thing about how Hindutva-supporter Gabbard might need to say something about Hindutva-lover Indian PM Narendra Modi's basic destruction of the current government — and pending destruction of the current society — of Kashmir.

That, and many more things in the list, are all in my Tulsi Kool-Aid#TulsiTwerkers and Tulsi's not the peace candidate blog posts, all with plenty of links.

All three claim the MSM gets her wrong on Assad. I'd say half-wrong, not wrong. None of the three note that she also has been uncritically close to Egyptian strongman President Abdul Fattah al-Sisi. But, Robert Fisk, who I'd easily trust over any of the three above, HAS noted just that, most recently when Sisi's predecessor, Mohamed Morsi, died in very strange circumstances earlier this year.

Because the MSM still has a large element of Zionism and hasn't really called her out on it, none of the three musketeers has Tweeted critically, or written, about her pro-AIPAC, anti-BDS House resolution vote. Ditto on her claim that Palestinians use people as human shields.

None have asked about her support for drone warfare or torture.

Nor has any of the three noted that this allegedly anti-establishment, anti-Deep State candidate is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.

Gentlemen, you're losing credibility.

Now, if only a site like Washington Babylon and Ken Silverstein would pick up this thread.

Someplace actually outside the box? Mondoweiss says that two and only two Democratic presidential candidates have explicitly talked about cutting U.S. foreign aid to Israel. Guess what? Neither Bernie Sanders nor Pete Buttigieg is named Tulsi Gabbard.


Actually, on the parallel issue of McResistance, or being reflexively against it, we do need to mention another person by name with Maté - Benjamin Norton.

On the Ukrainian kerfuffle, Aaron first started saying it was perhaps either a Trumpian trap game for Dems or else just more Mueller type stuff. So I tweeted him this from Silverstein. Then, a day later, he clearly pulled in his horns with this tweet:
Overton Window movement isn't just left-to-right politically. It includes other things like this.

So, I Tweeted Aaron and Max this from Silverstein with the "ask" that they have him on the show.

(Also of note: Aaron deleted the tweet I first quote-tweeted.)

And, I guess we need to add Yasha Levine to the list, too. Aaron retweeted:
Fact is, Yasha, that several people, including myself, asked Vogel how he was making this claim and others pointed out facts to undermine it.

And, of course, Michael Tracey is there:

Says the man with the extremely deliberately poor track record of peddling Tulsi Gabbard Kool-Aid lies and calling Lyin Ted, Booger Cruz, Rafael Cruz "charming" (and likely to be the Prez nominee in 2016) in 2014. That's Michael Tracey for you, folks!


Update, Nov. 1: I'm wondering how the OTB stenos, along with regular Tulsi stans, are reacting to her vote FOR the House Dems' impeachment resolution.

Update, Nov. 8: Aaron got kicked on his former news site, The Real News over his twosider-stanning. (Watch out, world, "stanning" is going to get attached to more!) Matt also got a bit of kicking. Ryan Cooper and William Rivers Pitt are pretty insightful themselves. So, contra this DSA Rose who's still part of the duopoly, and where I saw the link:
I'll take them first.

October 27, 2019

Commerce / Greenville shooting shows some societal wrongs

Behind the tragedy of two people being killed at an off-premises non-university party for Texas A-M (Blogger still won't render ampersands correctly) Commerce's homecoming we have several other societal problems on display.

Update, Nov. 16: We also have a an update to Problem No. 5 below. The original suspect, Brandon Ran Gonzales, has been released AND the Hunt County Sheriff's Office has asked for the case against him to be dropped.

1. On Twitter, the old #ThoughtsAndPrayers / #PrayFor crowd raising its ugly head. It IS ugly, and if you truly believe in Jeebus, ask him to "convert" your wingnut Congresscritter to #GunControlNow. (The rise of the Nones among Millennials will help lessen, if not quite solve the religious platitudes [I hope and think] in the longer run.)
The rest come from the story itself.
2. Gun glorification culture. Cops couldn't figure out what weapon / weapons was / were used at first because ... the dance floor was decorated with stray bullets, among other things. Or maybe it was part of Halloween decorations. (And there, the University's official Twitter, at a secular state university, also does #ThoughtsAndPrayers.
3. The binge drinking culture. Yeah, I did it when I was in college, but that much? And with that much enticement? Doubt it.
4. If correct and the gunman was targeting his first victim, we need to address sex-fueled machismo or whatever.
5. The not talking to cops culture. We need to address youth in general clamming up, partiers in general clamming up, esp if drugs as well as booze are there, and minorities in general not trusting cops to talk to them. We have to address the "whys" behind this. Some are legit, others are bullshit.
5A. Using the cops to pay off old grievances. Given that we have an anonymous witness who sold the HCSO on his claims, that seems to be what's up.
6. Gang and gang wannabe-culture, if the rest of the story as updated is correct.

Sadly, since then, re point 2, and probably re point 4, and definitely re point 5, further shooting broke out at a vigil in Dallas.

Brandon Ray Gonzales has now been arrested. He claims he has witnesses to corroborate his innocence but none have come forward yet. No motive has been named at this time. That said, his being dressed as a security guard, by his own admission? Doesn't look good.

Meanwhile, The Rev. (say that in a Rush Limbaugh way) Dr. Jeff Hood says he believes Gonzales is innocent. That's even though an updated version of his arrest story says that one friend, at least, fingered him via his Facebook profile. A couple of pix on that profile show him gang-signing, or gang-wannabe signing.

Update: I've pulled the picture down. No need to keep it up.  But the note about it, and see more three paragraphs down? Stays.

Per my updated Point 6 above, if this is indeed the case, university kids? It may be tough, but if you have a past that it would help you to break from, put the small-town environment of a place like Commerce to your advantage. (And, no, I'm not saying "act white." I'll update that to say, try to rise upward in socioeconomic class, no matter your ethnicity.

And now, as of Nov. 1, per NBC-5 and contra the Revvvvvvv. Dr. Hood and Gonzales' family, things look even less good for him.

First, the fact that a "protected witness" is talking, and that said witness needs legal anonymity protection at this time. That alone seems to point at general thuggishness, if not gangbang or gangbang wannabe. And, he identifies as "fml jefe." "Fml" most likely stands for "fuck my life," which also doesn't help.

Update: So why was this witness "protected"? Did the HCSO vet the witness more? Did they talk to Gonzales' family? Or his attorney? If their evidence was available so early, why did he sit in jail 9 days? 

And, WHO screwed up? Per who all was in on the investigation, was it HCSO? Texas Rangers? FBI? 

And, per my 5A addendum, will they run a tighter investigation from here on out? 

That all said? Three kids, one by an ex-girlfriend and two by another ex-GF, with the younger of them 1 year old, just like the one kid by the first ex? Doesn't argue for the best of lives as is. Probably made it easy for the anonymous witness to sell his story. All the info is per the first link in the "update" at top. Friends and family think he's great. But, since he's off the hook, the Morning News didn't ask either ex what they thought of him.

Second, the fact that "a dice game" was taking place — let's just call it a craps game for this and giggles — at the party and Gonzales was (update: Should have had ALLEGEDLY) sitting in on in it, shortly before he went to the john then came out brandishing (cliche alert!) his pistol? Makes the party look less on the up and up, at a minimum. (Also, outside the range of the crime itself, makes the facilities owner look less than totally in control.)