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Member since: Sun Jan 1, 2017, 05:42 PM
Number of posts: 13,047

Journal Archives

Who Wore it Better?

Methinks it might be a way of signalling the aliens in their mothership who is worthy for pickup.

The Flynn Recommended Sentencing Bullshittery Reminds Me of My Students

This is something I have only noticed in the last few years: the expectation of reward for honesty. A student will not hand in a paper on time. When I ask why, the response will be along the lines of, "I had to babysit my sister, and I just didn't have time. But at least I'm being honest." It's that last part I want to concentrate on here for a moment. Since when did simply being honest mean absolution of all wrong doing? I am an educator, damn it, not a fucking Catholic priest! If you don't turn in your paper, you get a zero. That's what you earned by not doing your job for my class.

So let's turn to the Flynn situation. He committed felonies! He committed them knowing full well they were felonies! So now that he has told the truth, both his counsel and the prosecutor feel that his honesty should be enough and he shouldn't serve any time? This simply does not make any sense whatsoever to me. For example, if I knowingly run over and kill someone but months later turn myself in to the cops and tell them everything, should I be let loose? I was being honest with the cops. Shouldn't I be rewarded for my honesty? Now, you may take the stance (as his counsel has) that the FBI did not inform him that he was being questioned regarding his Russian connections. Pardon me if I think that is the single most bullshittery excuse ever. To believe this would mean you have to believe the National Security Advisor had no idea that is was wrong to enlist the aid of foreign nationals. You would have to believe the National Security Advisor had no idea that he shouldn't lie to the FBI...ever...under any circumstance.

No Mikey, I hope for all of our sake the judge sees through this "reward for honesty" bullshittery and sentences you to the absolute maximum time possible. You deserve that.

A New Connection between the Gut and the Brain

Holy Crap! The Rump Might Be On To Something!

It is well known that a high salt diet leads to high blood pressure, a risk factor for an array of health problems, including heart disease and stroke. But over the last decade, studies across human populations have reported the association between salt intake and stroke irrespective of high blood pressure and risk of heart disease, suggesting a missing link between salt intake and brain health.

Interestingly, there is a growing body of work showing that there is communication between the gut and brain, now commonly dubbed the gut–brain axis. The disruption of the gut–brain axis contributes to a diverse range of diseases, including Parkinson’s disease and irritable bowel syndrome. Consequently, the developing field of gut–brain axis research is rapidly growing and evolving. Five years ago, a couple of studies showed that high salt intake leads to profound immune changes in the gut, resulting in increased vulnerability of the brain to autoimmunity—when the immune system attacks its own healthy cells and tissues by mistake, suggesting that perhaps the gut can communicate with the brain via immune signaling.

Now, new research shows another connection: immune signals sent from the gut can compromise the brain’s blood vessels, leading to deteriorated brain heath and cognitive impairment. Surprisingly, the research unveils a previously undescribed gut–brain connection mediated by the immune system and indicates that excessive salt might negatively impact brain health in humans through impairing the brain’s blood vessels regardless of its effect on blood pressure.

What does this mean for a man who eats McD's and KFC by the truckload?

Need to Get Something Straight Regarding Manafort

He's facing sentencing for those eight counts he was found guilty of back in August. Now, supposing he was sentenced. Rump could pardon him. That does not mean he goes free. He still has the other ten or eleven counts that he could be retried for. He also has added a few in recent weeks lying to Mueller's team. Rump cannot do a damned thing about that.

My questions:

1. Supposing Rump pardoned Manafort for the first eight counts, how long could the courts continue to keep Manafort in jail before retrying for the other ten or eleven counts? What is a reasonable estimate? Another year? Two years? I'm sure they could find a way to keep him there for a very long time, but I want to know what is a "reasonable" length we could expect.

2. Obviously Manafort knows that the longer they wait the less likely it will be that his buddy Rump will be in office to pardon him. So what the hell is his game plan here? Maybe I'm being completely stupid, but it seems like he continues to shoot himself in the foot. Is there any way in hell he would risk a life sentence just to protect Rump? Or does he feel safer surrounded by guards because Pooty Poot has a vial of polonium with his name on it?

Has Anyone Changed Their Opinion of Bush Senior?

I will admit that these last few days have somewhat altered my opinion of him. There have been some interviews on NPR that have convinced me he was not quite as bad as I used to believe. Maybe I'm just becoming soft.

Just a Reminder: 38, 40, 41 Are Gone, But You Know Who Isn't?


May he live to be 120!

What Is Your Spending Like This Season?

I just finished buying holiday presents today. I would say that I spent about the same as in previous years. However, I do believe that there is a lot of uncertainty this year. The DOW lost all of its gains, then rose slightly. Unemployment is down, but thousands are getting laid off by GM and farmers are barely scraping by. So I'm unsure whether the market is still being driven by the last quarter, or if people really do have a bright outlook overall. What say ye?

According to the nooze, consumer spending is up (although this is based on 3rd quarter spending):

U.S. Consumer Spending Picks Up; Inflation Below Forecast
Americans’ spending rose by more than forecast in October, giving the biggest part of the economy a solid start to the quarter, while a measure of underlying inflation cooled to the slowest since February.

Americans’ spending is poised to keep driving growth this quarter, supported by a strong job market, lower taxes and improving finances that’ll likely also boost holiday spending. Even with the weaker inflation readings, the Fed is widely anticipated to move ahead with an interest-rate hike in December, though the pace of moves beyond that is less certain.

Consumer spending, which accounts for about 70 percent of the economy, had been projected to moderate this quarter after rising in the prior three months at a 3.6 percent annualized pace that was revised down from 4 percent. The economy also is forecast to cool, after the best back-to-back quarters of growth since 2014.

If I weren't such a cheap bastard and actually bought a star so I could conduct a poll, I think my choices would be:
1. Lots of confidence
2. Meh, sort of confident that the market will hold for at least awhile
3. Not confident at all but what the hell, I'm going to spend my savings this season
4. I've put my money in a shoe box and am currently holding onto it tightly as I cower under my bed

Fitting Punishments for the Rump Gang

So I've been contemplating what would constitute fitting punishments for the Rump and his conspiratorial imps. So far, I have come up with a few:

Rump = rot in a Siberian gulag. Hey, at least he will be in his beloved Russia, right?

Ivanka = spend the rest of her life working in a Chinese sweat shop making knock offs of designer brands.

Don Jr. = game warden in Kenya. The penalty for allowing any animal to be poached on his watch TBD (it ain't gonna be good, though).

Please feel free to add your own "fitting punishment" for whomever you would like.

A Lot of High Ranking Nazis Escaped After WWII and Fled to Argentina

Lines of escape were called "Ratlines":

Ratlines were a system of escape routes for Nazis and other fascists fleeing Europe at the end of World War II. These escape routes mainly led toward havens in Latin America, particularly Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, Colombia,[1] Brazil, Uruguay, Mexico, Guatemala, Ecuador and Bolivia, as well as in Switzerland. Other destinations included Australia, Canada, and the Middle East. There were two primary routes: the first went from Germany to Spain, then Argentina; the second from Germany to Rome to Genoa, then South America. The two routes developed independently but eventually came together to collaborate.

I know of one YUGE rat who is in Argentina already. Could it be possible that we won't be seeing him again?

Jewish professor finds swastikas spray-painted on her office walls at Columbia's Teachers College

New York (CNN)The NYPD has launched an investigation into a possible hate crime after a Columbia University professor's office was vandalized with two spray-painted swastikas and a derogatory word aimed at Jewish people.

Professor Elizabeth Midlarsky, who is Jewish and has published various articles related to the Holocaust, told CNN, "I opened the outer door and almost passed out," when she saw the two swastikas spray-painted in red.

Midlarsky, who has worked at the university's Teachers College for 28 years, reported the incident to security and received support from staff before being brought home by a van.

Midlarsky told CNN that she had begun to receive hate mail both by letter and email in 2007, which she believed was connected to her lifetime of work as a Jewish activist. She then received a call from Teachers College not to come in as her office had been vandalized.

At the time, then Teachers College President Susan Fuhrman joined Midlarsky at a student-organized protest, saying, "We stand with our students, who have said 'enough' to hate crimes, and in this particular case, to a vicious swastika."

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