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Monday, January 15, 2018

OTP 15 January 2018:Mississippi’s anti-gay marriage law is hurting two college baseball teams

The “stick to sports” mantra took on a life of its own in 2017, as the interweaving of sports and politics was undeniable and, ultimately, angered quite a few sports fans. Still, protests during the national anthem or political tweets by athletes never actually got in the way of the action or stopped games from being played.

But politics have halted a college baseball series between the University of Southern Mississippi and Stony Brook University, a public school in New York. The two schools were scheduled to meet in a three-game series in February, but dueling declarations in each state have now made that series impossible. The kicker? It has absolutely nothing to do with baseball.

 

(As always, views expressed in the article lede and comments are the views of the individual commenters and the submitter of the article and do not represent the views of Baseball Think Factory or its owner.)

Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 03:13 PM | 2103 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: college baseball, off topic, politics

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   1. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:06 PM (#5606789)
“When the wave comes, it’s always underestimated in the polls. That is the reason that Republicans are ducking for cover.”

— A conservative political strategist, quoted by the Washington Post.

Top Republicans See Likely Democratic Takeover

Mike Allen: “Hill sources tell us that a House Democratic takeover is now likely.”

“One strategist close to Republican leaders believes that a loss of the House is ‘baked in,’ and said top Republicans don’t see a way to avoid it.”
   2. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:12 PM (#5606795)


See, I can't imagine why anyone sees media bias. FTFA:
At the crux of this is Mississippi’s House Bill 1523 — an anti-gay marriage law that’s been dubbed the “religious freedom bill.”
As opposed to, say, "a religious freedom law that's been dubbed an 'anti-gay marriage bill.'"
   3. McCoy Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:13 PM (#5606797)
I always thought the next big liquor was going to be gin but I should have realized it was going to be rum. What with tiki coming back into style.

I thought it would be gin because of all the distilleries that popped up for whiskey. Gin is an easy cash crop while you’re waiting for your liquor to age in barrels. In DC down by union market there is a rum distillery. I couldn’t tell you if it was amazing stuff but the bar was a good time.
   4. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:16 PM (#5606800)
See, I can't imagine why anyone sees media bias.


That is more a problem with your imagination than anything else. /snark.

Seriously though, it is an anti-gay bill and not really about religious freedom. Religious freedom is like States Rights, it is the club used and not the reason.
   5. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:16 PM (#5606801)
I always thought the next big liquor was going to be gin but I should have realized it was going to be rum. What with tiki coming back into style.


I thought gin was already/formerly the next big liquor?
   6. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:18 PM (#5606805)
Continuing the Cardigans/Cranberries/etc discussion from the previous thread--

The Cardigans had more good songs than people know, but fewer than I'd hoped. A Swedish pop band of that era that I preferred were the Wannadies, who had several good songs and a few great ones, but had the maddening habit of spreading them out equidistantly over a series of albums and CD singles. Having just checked it, even their career compilation isn't sensible.

Better still was a Swedish band called Grass Show, which had one terrific pop album that made it to the same British label as Blur, but then more or less vanished.

Best of all were the Merrymakers, who recorded one of the greatest pop albums of all time (Bubblegun). Their first album was pretty solid, too. The band was basically a two-man show, and they moved into producing local acts in Sweden. Can't blame them; they made just one small and short U.S. "tour" that I know of. I went to one of the shows, along with approximately 20 other people. (Not an exaggeration.) And they were good!
   7. Don August(us) Cesar Geronimo Berroa Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:22 PM (#5606808)

Seriously though, it is an anti-gay bill and not really about religious freedom. Religious freedom is like States Rights, it is the club used and not the reason.


ftfa:

It allows businesses and the government to deny services to gay couples, while defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman.


   8. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:25 PM (#5606809)
Even the true believers are going wobbly

Maybe so. But let's admit that if he wins it will be because magic is real or they cheated. There is not way that the following numbers indicate a midterm win for the president's party:

One year into Donald Trump's presidency, Americans feel more positive about the economy but not as good about the state of the country overall -- and the latter is closely tied to views of the president.

   9. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:26 PM (#5606810)
The Next GOP Panic: Governor’s Races

Politico: “The GOP is forced to defend 13 states that former President Obama won — from Maine to New Mexico to Wisconsin — while Democrats are protecting just one — Pennsylvania — that fell to Trump.”

“Republicans now admit that a handful of once-competitive battlegrounds are nearly out of reach for them in 2018. Meanwhile, Democratic hopes are rising in a handful of conservative strongholds.”
   10. McCoy Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:27 PM (#5606812)
For me the trend goes Vodka, tequila, scotch, and then Bourbon. All the other liquors have had a focus on craft versions but never to the scale that those four had in the last 20 years. I just find it hard to believe that rum is going to be the next big thing.
   11. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:31 PM (#5606817)
See, I can't imagine why anyone sees media bias. FTFA:
At the crux of this is Mississippi’s House Bill 1523 — an anti-gay marriage law that’s been dubbed the “religious freedom bill.”

As opposed to, say, "a religious freedom law that's been dubbed an 'anti-gay marriage bill.'"

As if there ever would've been any such bill without the motivation of providing legal cover for anti-gay actions on the part of state employees.

If only we'd been so fortunate to have had you around back then, I'm sure The Nieporent News headlines on July 3, 1964 would read "A Jackboot in Every Pot: LBJ Signs Historic Anti-Freedom Law"
   12. Greg K Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:34 PM (#5606820)
I always confuse them with The Cardigans. And the Corrs.


The Cardigans are one of my favourite bands.

They have one song where Nina Persson asks you to conquer her like a fascist war machine that would sound ridiculous coming from anyone else.


I can hear your cannons call
you've been aiming at my land
your hungry hammer is falling

and if you want me I'm your country

I'm an angel bored like hell
and you're a devil meaning well
you steal my lines and you strike me down
come raise your flag upon me
   13. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:36 PM (#5606823)
David N, #2:
See, I can't imagine why anyone sees media bias. FTFA:
At the crux of this is Mississippi’s House Bill 1523 — an anti-gay marriage law that’s been dubbed the “religious freedom bill.”
As opposed to, say, "a religious freedom law that's been dubbed an 'anti-gay marriage bill.'"



The problem with that "I spy with my little eye, liberal bias!" distinction is that the thing has literally "been dubbed the religious freedom bill" (or to be precise, The Religious Liberty Accommodations Act, aka The Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act). Thereafter, it has been criticized, or described, or mischaracterized, or some other verb of your choosing, as an anti-gay marriage bill.

Or rather, it was. Now it's not an anti-gay marriage bill, it's an anti-gay marriage law. (The verb of my choosing is "is.")
   14. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:36 PM (#5606824)
It allows businesses and the government to deny services to gay couples, while defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman.
Yeah, that's not right. As to the first, it does not allow the government to deny services to gay couples; it allows individual government employees to do so based on their religious beliefs in some circumstances as long as they ensure that some other government employee is available to provide those services. And it doesn't define marriage as a union between a man and a woman (and if it did, that'd be overridden by Obergefell anyway). Rather, it includes as a protected religious belief a belief that a marriage is between a man and a woman.

I don't think the bill is well-designed, FWIW. It's badly underinclusive and too narrowly focused. But saying that it's not a religious-freedom bill is wrong. It prevents the government from punishing people for having certain religious views relating to gay marriage. That's all it does.
   15. Greg K Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:36 PM (#5606825)
Thanks for the links Gonfalon.

As far as Scandinavian pop goes, I've always found Cat by the Sugarcubes to be a song I can return to again and again forever.

I actually like a fair amount of Bjork's solo stuff, but I would have loved more of that.
   16. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:42 PM (#5606829)
As if there ever would've been any such bill without the motivation of providing legal cover for anti-gay actions on the part of state employees.
The law does not allow state employees to take anti-gay actions. And only a small part of the bill has anything to do with state employees.

If only we'd been so fortunate to have had you around back then, I'm sure The Nieporent News headlines on July 3, 1964 would read "A Jackboot in Every Pot: LBJ Signs Historic Anti-Freedom Law"
And? (Of course, I approve of parts of the CRA. Titles I, III - VI, and VIII - XI were all unobjectionable.)
   17. Shredder Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:48 PM (#5606840)
As opposed to, say, "a religious freedom law that's been dubbed an 'anti-gay marriage bill.'"
You realize its authors actually titled it the Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act, also called the Religious Liberty Accommodations Act. So to say it had been dubbed the "anti-gay marriage bill" would be stupid, because no one had "dubbed" it that. What a world, when repeating what Republicans say is now evidence of bias.

Edit: Or what GB said.
   18. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:49 PM (#5606841)
it allows individual government employees to do so based on their religious beliefs in some circumstances as long as they ensure that some other government employee is available to provide those services


The law does not allow state employees to take anti-gay actions.

Say what now? Even if a different employee is there to provide the service, the original employee is most definitely taking an anti-gay action.
   19. GregD Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:49 PM (#5606842)
It prevents the government from punishing people for having certain religious views relating to gay marriage. That's all it does.
Wow, Mississippi punishes people for having certain religious beliefs! No wonder they need a bill. How does the state determine their beliefs? Torture? Multiple-choice quiz? Dunking in water? Pressing hot coals upon them? Perusing their Facebook posts?
   20. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 15, 2018 at 04:53 PM (#5606845)
Since no one has retired today (so far), let's pass the time by looking at Daily Kos' calculations of the fifty most vulnerable GOP House seats, in descending order of DEFCON shakiness. It shouldn't come as any surprise that six of the "top" seven have already been vacated.

I'll just list their #1 to #24, since as we all know, that's the historical average.

FL-27 OPEN (farewell, Ros-Lehtinen)
CA-39 OPEN (adios, Royce)
WA-08 OPEN (toodle-oo, Reichert)
NJ-02 OPEN (peace out, LoBiondo)
CA-10 Denham
AZ-02 OPEN (Vaya con Dios, McSally)
CA-49 OPEN (catch you on the flipside, Issa)
VA-10 Comstock
TX-23 Hurd
IA-01 Blum
CO-06 Coffman
CA-25 Knight
FL-26 Curbelo
MN-02 Lewis
CA-21 Valadao
NY-19 Faso
PA-08 Fitzpatrick
MN-03 Paulsen
NE-02 Bacon
MI-11 OPEN (Seacrest... out!, Trott)
ME-02 Poliquin
PA-15 OPEN (don't let the door hit ya where the good Lord split ya, Dent)
IA-03 Young
NJ-07 Lance
   21. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:00 PM (#5606855)
As if there ever would've been any such bill without the motivation of providing legal cover for anti-gay actions on the part of state employees.

The law does not allow state employees to take anti-gay actions.


It allows them to refuse to issue marriage licenses to gay couples if that would offend these employees' religious beliefs, even if to date no actual employee has chosen to exercise that right. See your own #14, for Christ's sake.

I realize that the practical effect of the bill may be minimal, assuming that the part about providing an "available" alternate employee means "immediately available within the same office on the same day with no delay whatever". But that doesn't change the stigma of the original refusal, nor does it change the obvious motivation behind the bill in the first place. You might as well give a racially bigoted employee the same "religious" right to refuse to issue a license to an interracial couple.

If only we'd been so fortunate to have had you around back then, I'm sure The Nieporent News headlines on July 3, 1964 would read "A Jackboot in Every Pot: LBJ Signs Historic Anti-Freedom Law"

And?


I realize I'll owe Ray royalties for this, but nevertheless: Concession accepted.
   22. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:02 PM (#5606856)
calling out Dear Leader

The "Dear Leader" thing continues to be preposterous in the face of "To Sir, With Love" (*)


OTOH the "Dear Leader" thing is quite useful. Like ClownHitler or Cheetoh Benito, it tells you up front who is deranged, thereby allowing you to downgrade their opinion immediately.
   23. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:03 PM (#5606858)
#22:
OTOH the "Dear Leader" thing is quite useful. Like ClownHitler or Cheetoh Benito, it tells you up front who is deranged, thereby allowing you to downgrade their opinion immediately.


TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS TDS
   24. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:04 PM (#5606859)
I'll just list their #1 to #24, since as we all know, that's the historical average.


It's been noted in a couple places, but one big problem with the CA targets is the the jungle primary issue... It's actually burned Dems in California since they went that route - fields too deep/too many candidates and the GE squeezes a Dem off the ballot. I'm ordinarily not a big fan of the state or national party jumping in to smack candidates out of the race, but in this case - it's necessary... I have no great ideas on *how* - but in some cases, there are already 4 legitimately decent contenders either announced or supposedly eyeing those seats and that is where the problems kick in.

As much as it works well for Dems at the top of the ticket - we're rapidly approaching a point where you have to wonder if the GOP won't become statewide office extinct in California GEs - it hurts them at the district level.
   25. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:06 PM (#5606863)
Oh noes!

Ray has downgraded my opinion... whereas he's always been so open-minded and circumspect in considering anything outside his comfort zone before...
   26. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:07 PM (#5606864)
Wow, Ms Cranberries died

Dolores O'Riordan was only 46. I guess she did not linger.


First concert I ever saw, albeit it was at my college.

I'm now up to three concerts. I also saw Cher and... no, only two.
   27. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:07 PM (#5606865)
Cranberries: Angry Irish band (think: Sinead O'Connor, but more mentally stable)
10,000 Maniacs: Hippy dippy pre-Hipsters (Think: Blind Melon)
The Sundays: Top-40 pop wannabes (Think: a bazillion eminently forgettable bands)


Some of us have even forgotten who The Sundays were.
   28. GregD Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:10 PM (#5606870)
It's been noted in a couple places, but one big problem with the CA targets is the the jungle primary issue... It's actually burned Dems in California since they went that route - fields too deep/too many candidates and the GE squeezes a Dem off the ballot. I'm ordinarily not a big fan of the state or national party jumping in to smack candidates out of the race, but in this case - it's necessary... I have no great ideas on *how* - but in some cases, there are already 4 legitimately decent contenders either announced or supposedly eyeing those seats and that is where the problems kick in.
The real trick would be two significant Republicans entering the race, right? If there's one real Republican (incumbent or party regular for an open seat) then the multiple Democrats issue just means whoever comes in second might have, say, 17 percent of the vote. But if there are two strong Republicans and 3 strong Democrats, you could imagine a scenario of

Republican1 24
Republican2 23
Democrat1 22
Democrat2 18
Democrat3 13

And two Republicans advancing to the general even though Republicans would just get 47 percent of the vote combined in this scenario. But that's a lot to pull off. Because if you do push 2 serious Republicans you have to worry instead that you get:

Democrat1 31
Democrat2 21
Republican1 20
Republican2 20
Democrat3 4
Libertarian 4

Or something. So you have to run two serious Republicans to try to force Democrats out of the general, but if you run 2 serious Republicans you also increase the odds that no Republicans advance to the general.
   29. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:12 PM (#5606872)
You realize its authors actually titled it the Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act, also called the Religious Liberty Accommodations Act. So to say it had been dubbed the "anti-gay marriage bill" would be stupid, because no one had "dubbed" it that. What a world, when repeating what Republicans say is now evidence of bias.
This was stupid when Gonfalon said it, and it didn't get any smarter in the subsequent twelve minutes until you posted it.

dub
/dəb/
verb
past tense: dubbed; past participle: dubbed
1. give an unofficial name or nickname to (someone or something).
In fact, many people -- including the author of TFA -- dubbed it an "anti-gay marriage bill." The formal name of the law is the Protecting Freedom of Conscience from Government Discrimination Act; although an earlier version of the bill used the term "Religious Liberty Accommodations Act," that is not in the final bill. Still, if the author had called it the Religious Liberty Accommodations Act, that would of course not be a sign of bias, and I did not say anything of the kind, as any non-illiterate person could see. The author labeled it, matter-of-factly, an anti-gay marriage law. He then used scare quotes around the phrase religious liberty bill, implying that some people call it that but it isn't such.
   30. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:16 PM (#5606873)

Say what now? Even if a different employee is there to provide the service, the original employee is most definitely taking an anti-gay action.
The original employee is taking no action at all, so ipso facto the original employee can't be taking an anti-gay action. Moreover, gay people by definition would not even notice since the service is still being provided -- the bill provides that the service can't be "impeded or delayed."
   31. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:21 PM (#5606878)
Or something. So you have to run two serious Republicans to try to force Democrats out of the general, but if you run 2 serious Republicans you also increase the odds that no Republicans advance to the general.


Yes and no -

You have to remember that we're talking about the modern GOP. The GOP base doesn't distinguish between serious and not-serious. Hence, the problem is any time there are just two - but no more - Republicans. Half will vote the 'serious' candidate, half will vote the for Trump candidate.
   32. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:25 PM (#5606883)
The original employee is taking no action at all, so ipso facto the original employee can't be taking an anti-gay action. Moreover, gay people by definition would not even notice since the service is still being provided -- the bill provides that the service can't be "impeded or delayed."

If that bolded part is literally the case, then the religiously compelled employee would have to make up some plausible sounding excuse (sudden bathroom urge or something) while a willing employee steps up seamlessly in his place to issue the license. The first employee obviously couldn't announce his objection to the couple, because then they'd obviously notice. Without that figleaf, an openly stated refusal would amount to a blatant insult, regardless of the quick entrance of a backup employee.

But if that's the case, and the figleaf is provided, then that's about as reasonable a compromise as one could expect. We'll see how this turns out in practice.
   33. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:28 PM (#5606887)
The original employee is taking no action at all, so ipso facto the original employee can't be taking an anti-gay action.

Oh, come on, even you're not that pedantic.

Moreover, gay people by definition would not even notice since the service is still being provided -- the bill provides that the service can't be "impeded or delayed."

(a) The question wasn't whether an anti-gay action would be "noticed." The question was whether it would be allowed under the law. And (b), if you're a gay couple in Mississippi, you think you aren't going to notice when someone refuses to provide you service, even if someone else does shortly thereafter?

Let's at least have these discussions based on real-world facts, please.
   34. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:28 PM (#5606888)
I realize that the practical effect of the bill may be minimal, assuming that the part about providing an "available" alternate employee means "immediately available within the same office on the same day with no delay whatever". But that doesn't change the stigma of the original refusal,
What stigma? What refusal? You are confused about how it works. (And, yes, it in fact means immediately available within the same office on the same day with no delay whatever; as I quoted in 30 -- those are actual quotes rather than scare quotes -- it requires that the license can't be "impeded or delayed.")
nor does it change the obvious motivation behind the bill in the first place. You might as well give a racially bigoted employee the same "religious" right to refuse to issue a license to an interracial couple.
Look, scare quotes again! (Andy, your writing would be about 10% more readable if you'd just stop before using quotation marks and ask yourself whether you're actually quoting someone. If not, 95% of the time no quotation marks are appropriate.) And? This is basically the ThoughtCrime of the left -- it's not enough that gay people have the same legal rights with respect to marriage, but we must punish people who don't agree to teach them a lesson about being bad people.



To be clear: I do not contend that the government employee provision of HB1523 is compelled; the government is acting in a different role as employer and regulator. It's considerate of the government not to force a government employee to do something that goes against his or her conscience when there's no necessity, but it's optional. The government could say, "If you don't like it, go work somewhere else." The other parts of the bill -- which make up the bulk of the bill, contrary to what you seem to think -- are far more important.
   35. PepTech, Intermittently Stable Genius Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:31 PM (#5606891)
Oh, come on, even you're not that pedantic.
An early candidate for funniest comment of the year! :)
   36. PepTech, Intermittently Stable Genius Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:32 PM (#5606892)
OTOH the "Dear Leader" thing is quite useful. Like ClownHitler or Cheetoh Benito
How about "Big Orange"? "Oompah-Loompah in Chief"? "Racist POTUS"?
   37. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:35 PM (#5606893)
Lyin' Donald? Crooked Donald? FakePresident?
   38. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:37 PM (#5606895)
"Racist POTUS"?

Just take out the "TU" and you're there.
   39. Shredder Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:40 PM (#5606898)
Meh, not worth it.
   40. BDC Posted: January 15, 2018 at 05:51 PM (#5606907)
Dang, missed the new thread. From the old one:


A single typo causes you to write off the book?

I can be like that. Though not so much with typos as with little bits of information. I recently started a book about extinctions, which lamented, early on, that the summer habitats of whooping cranes were going to be lost to rising sea levels. But unless the sea rises all the way to Alberta, that is not going to happen soon.

I started another one about the Italian Renaissance which began by saying that Italy had first been united politically under the reign of Augustus in the second century. There is just no way of getting Augustus into the second century of anything (he lived in the first BC and the first AD). So unless the author was alluding to the fact that a lot of emperors took the name "Augustus" as part of their title, which would be stupid without giving their other name …

These things can put me off when the book is supposed to be authoritative about one thing but whiffs hugely on another. Maybe the extinctions book was quite sound on extinctions and the other one on the Renaissance, but then they shouldn't have opined on stuff they didn't know anything about. Though that doesn't seem to stop me posting stuff here …
   41. OCF Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:00 PM (#5606908)
#28 is basically correct concerning the CA jungle primary. The scenarios in that post are only plausible in an open-seat election. And the first one did happen, once, in 2012 election in the 31st Congressional district. And the Democrats in California were so shocked by that that it's been a bogeyman for them ever since. But it's very hard to pull off that scenario. It is very difficult to shut out the majority party. In contrast, it is rather easy to shut out the minority party. The (open seat) 2016 Senate race came down to Kamala Harris versus Loretta Sanchez - both D. The open seat 2018 Governors race is very likely to be 2 D's - likely Newsom versus Villaraigosa, although other permutations are possible. It could even happen in a race that isn't an open seat, the 2018 Senate race, where Feinstein is being challenged on her left by De Leon. (You see people say that De Leon is "primarying" Feinstein, but because of the system, that isn't exactly the right word.)

The jungle primary was passed by a state referendum, which put it in the state constitution. It can't be changed by simple legislative action; it would take another referendum. That ballot measure was strongly opposed by both political party organizations at the time. So who supported it? As I remember it:

It was the brainchild and pet project of Abel Maldonado. Maldonado was a Republican with somewhat centrist views. He once ran for statewide office and lost the Republican primary, presumably for not being sufficiently conservative. He clung to the belief that he would have won the general election that year (I don't really know whether that's a reasonable belief.) Maldonado did eventually become Lieutenant Governor, but that was by appointment, not election. There was some deal - I've forgotten the details - where Governor Schwarzenegger needed Maldonado, and the price Maldonoado exacted was Arnold's full support on the jungle primary ballot measure.

Maldonado's theory was that this would help centrists. Of course he meant for that to include a centrist such as himself winning statewide office. In practice, is there any evidence to support this theory? I think not. Consider that 2016 Senate race. Sanchez was three things that Harris was not: perceived to be further to the right than Harris and hence closer to the center of California voters; a Southern Californian (there are about twice as many voters in the south as in the north); and Latina (there are a lot more Hispanic voters than there are African-American, or South Asian-American, or African/South Asian American). The election wasn't even close; Sanchez lost in areas quite close to her home. (Of course, it would have taken a deft and sophisticated campaigner to take advantage of all of that, which is not a description of Sanchez.)
   42. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:17 PM (#5606911)
Trump May Need A Government Shutdown This Week...And Other Shutdown News

1. Trump May Need A Shutdown. Technically, a shutdown will occur because the legal authority for the government to spend money will expire. In reality, however, the real reason will be that someone involved in the negotiations will view this as an opportunity to be seen as a political badass by his, her or their base.

This week, Donald Trump is most likely to be that person.


Such a weird and ultimately self defeating strategy, but hey you want to look tough to your base, if you are that insecure, well OK. The rest of us will gladly watch you collect blame from everyone else. Good trade!

Majority of Republicans Satisfied with Direction of Country. Everyone else, not so much.

A new Gallup survey finds that 61% of Republicans are satisfied with how things are going in the country.

Overall, just 29% are satisfied.
   43. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:20 PM (#5606912)
Umm, Floyd?

"We're asking a lot of men, in light of the #MeToo movement, how men can grow in 2018," the female writer from Men's Health magazine asked.

"The who?," Mayweather asked in return.

"The #MeToo movement. Women speaking out about sexual assault," the magazine explained.

"When you say 'Me too' ... When somebody is like, 'I got a Rolls Royce, I be like 'Me too.' When somebody say they got a private jet, I say, 'Me too. I got two. Me too.'

"Well, I didn't know! My Me Too movement from the beginning was whenever somebody said what they have I'm like, 'Me too.' Somebody say they got a billion dollars, I say, 'I made a billion dollars, me too.'"
   44. Mellow Mouse, Benevolent Space Tyrant Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:20 PM (#5606913)
New???

New alarm among Republicans that Democrats could win big this year

But the trends have continued, and perhaps worsened, since that briefing, with two more prominent Republican House members announcing plans to retire from vulnerable seats and a would-be recruit begging off a Senate challenge to Democrat Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota despite pressure from Trump to run.

And by the end of the week, many Republicans were scrambling to distance themselves from the president after he spoke of “shithole countries” during an Oval Office meeting with lawmakers about immigration policy. Rep. Mia Love (R-Utah), a rising star in the party who faces a strong Democratic challenge this year, quickly denounced Trump for apparently denigrating Haiti, the birthplace of both her parents, during the Oval Office discussion.
   45. gef the talking mongoose, amorphous lefty blob Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:38 PM (#5606920)
the Cardigans/Cranberries/etc discussion


Reminds me of '88ish, when at least 3 British pop punk outfits with blonde lead singers released really catchy singles around the same time & seemed pretty much interchangeable -- the Primitives ("Crash"), Transvision Vamp (cover of Holly & the Italians' "Tell That Girl to Shut Up") & ... ummm ...

OK. I swear there was a 3rd one, though at the moment only The Motorcycle Boy ("Big Rock Candy Mountain") comes to mind, but it's not them because unlike the other two they never had anything released in the U.S. & were criminally overlooked. ("Big Rock Candy Mountain" should've been the biggest-selling single of, hell, the last 30 years.)
   46. gef the talking mongoose, amorphous lefty blob Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:46 PM (#5606925)
A single typo causes you to write off the book?

I can be like that. Though not so much with typos as with little bits of information.


I should note once more that, the editing fail aside, I found the book in question quite engrossing. Same goes, while I'm at it, for this one.
   47. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 06:54 PM (#5606929)
I'm less troubled by one word out of 90,000 than I am by (formerly) Gawker's (or pick any popular, well-read website at all) family of websites' inability to fix any typos AT ALL, even when told immediately about them. Seriously, someone told them not to care.
   48. Shredder Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:05 PM (#5606931)
Reminds me of '88ish, when at least 3 British pop punk outfits with blonde lead singers released really catchy singles around the same time & seemed pretty much interchangeable -- the Primitives ("Crash"), Transvision Vamp (cover of Holly & the Italians' "Tell That Girl to Shut Up") & ... ummm ...
I always thought the Sundays were way better than the Cranberries. I guess I still do. Too bad they decided to have kids rather than make more albums. Harriet Wheeler was super cute, too.
   49. What did Billy Ripken have against ElRoy Face? Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:13 PM (#5606934)
Harriet Wheeler was super cute, too.

She was cute, but she was no Nina Persson.
   50. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:38 PM (#5606951)
I'm ordinarily not a big fan of the state or national party jumping in to smack candidates out of the race, but in this case - it's necessary... I have no great ideas on *how* - but in some cases, there are already 4 legitimately decent contenders either announced or supposedly eyeing those seats and that is where the problems kick in.


Looking at California election dates, the certified list of candidates is finalized on March 29. The primary itself is on June 5. Basically, the party needs to do some polling in March, identify the non-contenders and ask them to leave.

Interestingly, the California primary system is identical to the system that they use in France. Now in France, it actually did work to allow a centrist to start his own party, become president and for many members of his party to be elected to the legislature. In theory, the system should better allow for a third or forth party to gain some seats in the California legislature, but so far that hasn't happened yet.

For the federal positions, Senate and House, there really only are two options. Even if somebody runs as an independent or third party, they will be either a de-facto Democrat or Republican in congress. They might not follow all of the party platform, but they either have to support Paul Ryan or Nancy Pelosi for speaker or Mitch McConnell or Chuck Schumer for majority leader.
   51. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:40 PM (#5606952)
The Darling Buds maybe? I don't think they ever really charted in the US.

Crash is one of the worlds most perfect pop creations - it still makes it onto every road trip mix on mine.
   52. BDC Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:41 PM (#5606953)
I have been behind on movies for the past month – long pointless story – but did get out to see Darkest Hour today. zonk posted about this film a few weeks back, raising some points I wondered about too (Dunkirk was not Churchill's brainchild, etc.) But I agree with zonk that it's a good film, well-acted, holds one's interest.

Spoiler alert too (though as zonk says, we sort of know who won the war): I do think the picture goes slightly off its own rails towards the end. For most of its length, Darkest Hour is your standard Shakespearean British history play. The scenes involve dialogue that the characters almost certainly did not speak in real life, but which encapsulates their positions and offers exposition along with plot. That's all cool. (Actually some of it, including Halifax and Chamberlain trying to lay a verbal trap for Churchill, and Churchill later cottoning to it and outmaneuvering them in turn, is excellent.)

But two scenes gave me pause (and gave other viewers pause, as far as I can tell reading reviews now). In one, King George VI visits an indecisive and rather hung over Churchill in what seems to be the lumber room of Number Ten, and claps him on the back and says "Buck up, chap, I'm on your side," or words to that effect. Oh please.

In the next, on the King's advice, Churchill takes an underground train from Downing Street to the Houses of Parliament (is that even possible)? The train evidently gets stuck between stations for ten minutes or so while a group of commuters urge him to tell Hitler to #### off. Evidently this scene is unloved because it's totally fabricated, but it also seems to me out of the style of the film so far. I get that it is emblematic of Churchill tapping into popular support, but till now we haven't seen anything fantasy-like in the film, and this scene is soppy and far over the top. I think it detracts from the big "we shall fight on the beaches" windup. But YMMV.

Hard to tell the contemporary leaning of the film. In one sense it's a kind of ode to Brexit, with Churchill and The People going it alone against the world. In another, it's very anti-Hitler (duh), and to the extent that right-populists including Trump around the world today shadow Hitler, the film is uncompromising against them. It's anti-racist (the one black character, on that Tube train, is part of the big happy British family, even seeming to have a white girlfriend). Churchill has things in common with Trump (mercurial, no censor on his tongue) but is essentially nice, as Kristin Scott Thomas (as his wife) urges him to be, and nice couldn't be further from Trump.

   53. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:41 PM (#5606954)
I realize that the practical effect of the bill may be minimal, assuming that the part about providing an "available" alternate employee means "immediately available within the same office on the same day with no delay whatever". But that doesn't change the stigma of the original refusal,

What stigma? What refusal? You are confused about how it works. (And, yes, it in fact means immediately available within the same office on the same day with no delay whatever; as I quoted in 30 -- those are actual quotes rather than scare quotes -- it requires that the license can't be "impeded or delayed.")


And if you'd bothered to go back and see what I wrote in #32, which clearly you didn't, you'd see that I agreed that if this were indeed the way it turned out in practice, it would be a reasonable compromise.

nor does it change the obvious motivation behind the bill in the first place. You might as well give a racially bigoted employee the same "religious" right to refuse to issue a license to an interracial couple.

Look, scare quotes again! (Andy, your writing would be about 10% more readable if you'd just stop before using quotation marks and ask yourself whether you're actually quoting someone. If not, 95% of the time no quotation marks are appropriate.) And? This is basically the ThoughtCrime of the left -- it's not enough that gay people have the same legal rights with respect to marriage, but we must punish people who don't agree to teach them a lesson about being bad people.


You keep repeating this boogeyman about "scare quotes", when 90% of the time these "scare quotes" are the actual words being used either by the people I'm responding to, or in this particular case, the word ("religious") taken right from the ####### bill itself, as well as by those who are trying to explain the reasons for their refusal to treat gay people differently than straights. If they didn't use the word themselves, I'd have no basis for quoting it.

The other 10% of the time I use "scare quotes", it's usually to describe self-styled "conservatives" (like those of the "freedom caucus") who have about as much to do with traditional conservatism as the late Joe McCarthy. I have too much respect for real conservatives not to use "scare quotes" when describing the bogus ones.

Sorry if this explanation scares you, but feel free to let me know when I use "scare quotes" around a word that doesn't fall into one of those categories.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

And by the end of the week, many Republicans were scrambling to distance themselves from the president after he spoke of “shithole countries” during an Oval Office meeting with lawmakers about immigration policy. Rep. Mia Love (R-Utah), a rising star in the party who faces a strong Democratic challenge this year, quickly denounced Trump for apparently denigrating Haiti, the birthplace of both her parents, during the Oval Office discussion.

What's to explain? According to Senators Perdue and Cotton, and according to Trump himself, he never said those words. It's all Fake News.
   54. Hank G. Posted: January 15, 2018 at 07:51 PM (#5606961)
I don't think the bill is well-designed, FWIW. It's badly underinclusive and too narrowly focused. But saying that it's not a religious-freedom bill is wrong. It prevents the government from punishing people for having certain religious views relating to gay marriage. That's all it does.


Why does anti-gay bigotry deserve special protection? Why not protection for people who have religious views concerning adultery? This would allow people to not serve most members of Congress.

What about me? I have religious views relating to people wearing clothing with mixed fibers. Are you telling me I still have to cater to people wearing an abominable polyester-blend shirt?
   55. tshipman Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:10 PM (#5606972)
It's been noted in a couple places, but one big problem with the CA targets is the the jungle primary issue... It's actually burned Dems in California since they went that route - fields too deep/too many candidates and the GE squeezes a Dem off the ballot. I'm ordinarily not a big fan of the state or national party jumping in to smack candidates out of the race, but in this case - it's necessary... I have no great ideas on *how* - but in some cases, there are already 4 legitimately decent contenders either announced or supposedly eyeing those seats and that is where the problems kick in.



1. The jungle primary system is a good idea for California, as it ensures that only the two most popular candidates get in.
2. If some kind of doomsday scenario comes to pass, that is fine and democracy will recover.
   56. ^^^ Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:11 PM (#5606974)
"Congress shall pass no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion." Very simple. Utterly fundamental to actual liberalism.

There's no "balancing" to be done as between fundamental liberties such as these and the completely-invented right of someone to pass through their life without "insult."
   57. Shredder Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:12 PM (#5606976)
The Darling Buds maybe? I don't think they ever really charted in the US.
I thought of them too. Also maybe Altered Images, but they were about half a generation earlier than the Cranberries.
   58. You Know Nothing JT Snow (YR) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:16 PM (#5606980)
Voice of the Beehive?
   59. Hank G. Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:19 PM (#5606982)
The original employee is taking no action at all, so ipso facto the original employee can't be taking an anti-gay action. Moreover, gay people by definition would not even notice since the service is still being provided -- the bill provides that the service can't be "impeded or delayed."


So, how does that work? Two people of the same sex approach the counter and ask for a marriage license. Employee A politely says that he doesn’t issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, but Employee B will be happy to do it? How are they not going to notice this?

Scenario B: Employee A, who has a religious objection to same-sex marriage is manning the counter and sees two men approaching. What does he do? Does he duck beneath the counter and furtively summon Employee B? Then it turns out that it is just two buddies who want fishing licenses, and Employee A looks like the ass he is?

The solution is simple. If your religious beliefs keep you from serving all citizens in a government job, get another job.
   60. greenback understands the nyt's effect on man Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:28 PM (#5606987)
The original employee is taking no action at all, so ipso facto the original employee can't be taking an anti-gay action.

I remember a libertarian saying that if a baseball player got run out of MLB because everybody else was taking steroids, then too bad. Nobody has a right to a baseball job. I remember another libertarian saying that if a bartender didn't want to work in a place where he would be exposed to second-hand smoke, then he should get a job somewhere else. Nobody has a right to that bartending job.

I guess government jobs are different.
   61. GregD Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:28 PM (#5606988)
"Congress shall pass no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion." Very simple. Utterly fundamental to actual liberalism.
What is utterly fundamental to actual liberalism is the division between public and private spheres. No classical liberal would confuse the right to worship privately with a "right" not to fulfill one's job duties and not suffer any consequences for it. That's the completely-invented right
   62. ^^^ Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:36 PM (#5606990)
No classical liberal would confuse the right to worship privately


This isn't the "right." It's far more expansive.

with a "right" not to fulfill one's job duties and not suffer any consequences for it.


This isn't the correct template of analysis, but even if it was, the religion could be accommodated -- just as workplaces accommodate disabilities. Indeed, the bill effectively does just that.

   63. GregD Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:39 PM (#5606991)
And it is of course anathema to classical liberalism and the spirit of the first amendment to argue that government owes special protection to the belief that same-sex marriage is immoral but not to the many, many other sincerely held religious beliefs about marriage. This is a bill establishing a state-protected form of religious interpretation. But if my religion teaches me that adulterers shouldn't be permitted to re-marry, as a number of major religions do, then I have no recourse under this law. Because the law is not designed to protect religious freedom.
   64. Greg K Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:40 PM (#5606992)


And then I thought that's a bit weird isn't it? Because I've just equated having a religious belief, with being mentally handicapped. Which obviously isn't appropriate.

Even though it is correct.
   65. Shredder Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:40 PM (#5606993)
Voice of the Beehive?
I was thinking of gef's posts where he mentioned British bands. I don't think they're British. Though Wikipedia says they're from London, the sisters are both Californians, so it's debatable. Maybe Catatonia, but they seemed more late '90s.
   66. GregD Posted: January 15, 2018 at 08:41 PM (#5606994)
This isn't the correct template of analysis, but even if it was, the religion could be accommodated -- just as workplaces accommodate disabilities. Indeed, the bill effectively does just that.
The bill of course protects no such freedom of religion since it defines to only areas of protection to be:

SECTION 2. The sincerely held religious beliefs or moral convictions protected by this act are the belief or conviction that:

(a) Marriage is or should be recognized as the union of one man and one woman;

(b) Sexual relations are properly reserved to such a marriage; and

(c) Male (man) or female (woman) refer to an individual's immutable biological sex as objectively determined by anatomy and genetics at time of birth.


Nothing else. By stating that only these beliefs deserve protection or count as sincerely held religious beliefs meriting state action, the section of bill goes far to establishing a state religion, while doing nothing to protect religious freedom.

Ed to add: this section, as other sections of the bill do other work
   67. Joyful Calculus Instructor Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:02 PM (#5606997)
So about that Mississippi law. I read that some medical services can be denied by someone holding those beliefs. So if a doctor diagnosed someone with clamidya could he say “since you got this by having non-marital sex, I’m not going to prescribe anti-biotics for you”? I’m guessing the answer is that a doctor couldn’t do that, but I haven’t seen any detailed descriptions of what can and can’t be denied.
   68. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:18 PM (#5607000)

1. The jungle primary system is a good idea for California, as it ensures that only the two most popular candidates get in.
Unless there are only two candidates, it does not.
   69. Sleepy's not going to blame himself Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:32 PM (#5607002)
I guess government jobs are different.
Of course the obvious solution is to stop wasting taxpayer dollars maintaining a massive bureaucracy to "license" marriages of any sort.
   70. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:43 PM (#5607009)
Why does anti-gay bigotry deserve special protection? Why not protection for people who have religious views concerning adultery? This would allow people to not serve most members of Congress.

What about me? I have religious views relating to people wearing clothing with mixed fibers. Are you telling me I still have to cater to people wearing an abominable polyester-blend shirt?
No; nobody is telling you that. Which is sort of the whole point: Nobody is passing laws punishing bakers who don't sell wedding cakes to adulterers. Nobody is seeking to fine stores that require separate dressing rooms to avoid violating the laws of shatnez. Nobody argues that a county registrar should be fired for deferring to his co-worker when recording a marriage license for any reason other than same-sex marriage.

Again, I would prefer a more general law. But like many laws, it responds to a specific issue rather than a range of possible issues.
   71. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:45 PM (#5607010)
I remember a libertarian saying that if a baseball player got run out of MLB because everybody else was taking steroids, then too bad. Nobody has a right to a baseball job. I remember another libertarian saying that if a bartender didn't want to work in a place where he would be exposed to second-hand smoke, then he should get a job somewhere else. Nobody has a right to that bartending job.

I guess government jobs are different.
Do you guess that because you didn't bother to read my post where I said something entirely different?
   72. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:54 PM (#5607015)
Hard to tell the contemporary leaning of the film. In one sense it's a kind of ode to Brexit, with Churchill and The People going it alone against the world. In another, it's very anti-Hitler (duh), and to the extent that right-populists including Trump around the world today shadow Hitler, the film is uncompromising against them. It's anti-racist (the one black character, on that Tube train, is part of the big happy British family, even seeming to have a white girlfriend). Churchill has things in common with Trump (mercurial, no censor on his tongue) but is essentially nice, as Kristin Scott Thomas (as his wife) urges him to be, and nice couldn't be further from Trump.


I saw two movies this weekend: The Commuter and Acts of Violence. Both movies interesting and entertaining, the latter even jerking a tear or two. Both movies ridiculous -- not moreso, it seems, than the absurd underground train scene in Churchill -- but neither movie will be winning any pretentious Hollywood awards, nor will anyone associated with them.

Neither movie has any of the sanctimonious artsy flavors that the elites love, such as Gary Oldman dressed up as Churchill mouthing meaningless learned-sounding cliches such as "Out of intense complexities... intense simplicities emerge." Acts of Violence even has to do with a subject that the elites claim to care about so much that they inflate its prevalence insofar as its relation to prostitution goes -- human trafficking -- but, alas, Bruce Willis will win no awards, and the elites at the Oscars still will not have heard of Cole Hauser or Shawn Ashmore.

"And the winner for best actor goes to... Gary Oldman, for Darkest Hour. This is the third Oscar nomination for Gary Oldman and his first time being nominated for playing Churchill..." To the Academy, as our very own Joseph T. Bivens is fond of saying, Fuuuuck You.
   73. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 09:54 PM (#5607016)
"Congress shall pass no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion." Very simple. Utterly fundamental to actual liberalism.

You going to allow Yemeni and Saudi Islamic child marriages by those practicing such religions in the U.S., quack?
   74. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:06 PM (#5607019)
I saw two movies this weekend: The Commuter and Acts of Violence. Both movies interesting and entertaining, the latter even jerking a tear or two. Both movies ridiculous -- not moreso, it seems, than the absurd underground train scene in Churchill -- but neither movie will be winning any pretentious Hollywood awards, nor will anyone associated with them.

Neither movie has any of the sanctimonious artsy flavors that the elites love, such as Gary Oldman dressed up as Churchill mouthing meaningless learned-sounding cliches such as "Out of intense complexities... intense simplicities emerge." Acts of Violence even has to do with a subject that the elites claim to care about so much that they inflate its prevalence insofar as its relation to prostitution goes -- human trafficking -- but, alas, Bruce Willis will win no awards, and the elites at the Oscars still will not have heard of Cole Hauser or Shawn Ashmore.

"And the winner for best actor goes to... Gary Oldman, for Darkest Hour. This is the third Oscar nomination for Gary Oldman and his first time being nominated for playing Churchill..." To the Academy, as our very own Joseph T. Bivens is fond of saying, Fuuuuck You


Wow.

Sometimes, when your own self-loathing shines through in such a vivid fashion, I rather pity you.

   75. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:07 PM (#5607021)
What about me? I have religious views relating to people wearing clothing with mixed fibers. Are you telling me I still have to cater to people wearing an abominable polyester-blend shirt?


No; nobody is telling you that. Which is sort of the whole point: Nobody is passing laws punishing bakers who don't sell wedding cakes to adulterers. Nobody is seeking to fine stores that require separate dressing rooms to avoid violating the laws of shatnez. Nobody argues that a county registrar should be fired for deferring to his co-worker when recording a marriage license for any reason other than same-sex marriage.

Maybe that's because people who disapprove of adultery and other "sins"** don't go around acting upon their beliefs when they're in positions where they have to interact with the public. Only people who object to gay marriage seem to feel compelled to make a public display of their objections. I'm sure that there are still marriage license clerks out there who are repelled at the thought of interracial marriages, but you don't hear of them trying to get the state to allow them to refuse to perform their duties for "religious" reasons.

** Pardon the "scare quote", Mr. Scare Quote Chastiser
   76. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:08 PM (#5607022)
I have been behind on movies for the past month – long pointless story – but did get out to see Darkest Hour today. zonk posted about this film a few weeks back, raising some points I wondered about too (Dunkirk was not Churchill's brainchild, etc.) But I agree with zonk that it's a good film, well-acted, holds one's interest.

I thought it was an okay, but not great film. There were too many historical inaccuracies, some of which you mentioned. It overplayed that Churchill was the only one in government who was unwilling to negotiate peace terms. The whole display of the political dynamics was overly simplified.

In addition to the absurdities that you mentioned (e.g., King visiting him, rail car scene), the scene where the soldier in Calais gets the telegram moments before a bomb drops on his head was a bit over-the-top.

Overall, it was a B+ movie that could have been an A with a better, more serious script that gave a little bit more depth to the characters who weren't Churchill.
   77. ERROR---Jolly Old St. Nick Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:12 PM (#5607024)
"Congress shall pass no law prohibiting the free exercise of religion." Very simple. Utterly fundamental to actual liberalism.

You going to allow Yemeni and Saudi Islamic child marriages by those practicing such religions in the U.S., quack?

Come back around 1978 and he'll see if he can give you an answer to that.
   78. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:13 PM (#5607025)
Wow.

Sometimes, when your own self-loathing shines through in such a vivid fashion, I rather pity you.


Says the guy who fled to Canada because he didn't agree with the results of a presidential election.
   79. reech Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:15 PM (#5607027)
Re: Mississippi -
Give them a break, they finally banned slavery 5 years ago.
   80. Count Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:18 PM (#5607030)
Saw the Shape of Water and thought it was fantastic. Will probably skip Darkest Hour; prestige middlebrow historical dramas are usually pretty boring (oddly though I really liked The King's Speech which is very much by the numbers).
   81. Count Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:21 PM (#5607031)
I saw two movies this weekend: The Commuter and Acts of Violence. Both movies interesting and entertaining, the latter even jerking a tear or two. Both movies ridiculous -- not moreso, it seems, than the absurd underground train scene in Churchill -- but neither movie will be winning any pretentious Hollywood awards, nor will anyone associated with them.

Neither movie has any of the sanctimonious artsy flavors that the elites love, such as Gary Oldman dressed up as Churchill mouthing meaningless learned-sounding cliches such as "Out of intense complexities... intense simplicities emerge." Acts of Violence even has to do with a subject that the elites claim to care about so much that they inflate its prevalence insofar as its relation to prostitution goes -- human trafficking -- but, alas, Bruce Willis will win no awards, and the elites at the Oscars still will not have heard of Cole Hauser or Shawn Ashmore.

"And the winner for best actor goes to... Gary Oldman, for Darkest Hour. This is the third Oscar nomination for Gary Oldman and his first time being nominated for playing Churchill..." To the Academy, as our very own Joseph T. Bivens is fond of saying, Fuuuuck You.


Much like the walking out posts, this reads like a joke. Darkest Hour and other awards-bait history dramas aren't even snobby! I am glad you found modern action movies you like.
   82. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:24 PM (#5607035)

So about that Mississippi law. I read that some medical services can be denied by someone holding those beliefs. So if a doctor diagnosed someone with clamidya could he say “since you got this by having non-marital sex, I’m not going to prescribe anti-biotics for you”? I’m guessing the answer is that a doctor couldn’t do that, but I haven’t seen any detailed descriptions of what can and can’t be denied.
Nothing in the law says anything about such a topic. The only thing in the law vaguely related to medical treatment is that a person can't be punished by the government "wholly or partially on the basis that the person declines to participate in the provision of treatments, counseling, or surgeries related to sex reassignment or gender identity transitioning or declines to participate in the provision of psychological, counseling, or fertility services based upon a sincerely held religious belief or moral conviction described in Section 2 of this act." (The convictions described in Section 2 are the ones quoted by GregD in 66 above.)

And just to make extra clear, that paragraph provides that it "shall not be construed to allow any person to deny visitation, recognition of a designated representative for health care decision-making, or emergency medical treatment necessary to cure an illness or injury as required by law."
   83. BDC Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:29 PM (#5607038)
Middlebrow is the way to put it. Pictures like Darkest Hour and The King’s Speech are not created by or marketed to elites IMO. They’re aimed at making money in the suburbs, and they do.
   84. Joe Bivens Recognizes the Kenyan Precedent Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:32 PM (#5607042)
Wtf are you talking about, Omega Monkey?
   85. Ray (RDP) Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:34 PM (#5607043)
I did see The King's Speech. Most boring movie in memory this side of The English Patient.
   86. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:35 PM (#5607044)
The Commuter and Acts of Violence... Neither movie has any of the sanctimonious artsy flavors that the elites love

Like plot or intelligence.

That a.) Ray is not elite and b.) The Darkest Hour is, is batshit.
   87. 6 - 4 - 3 Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:40 PM (#5607045)
I did see The King's Speech. Most boring movie in memory this side of The English Patient.

Agreed. The king might have been the least interesting political figure of the WWII era. Mostly because his involvement in world affairs was mainly limited to debating whether to evacuate to Canada and how to keep it quiet that his brother was a Nazi sympathizer.

Remind me again why the British still have a Royal Family?
   88. BDC Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:47 PM (#5607049)
I like The King’s Speech. Geoffrey Rush takes a kind of stock part (eccentric guru) and makes a lot out of it.

Though some day I do want to see a biopic about a British monarch who turns out to be shallow, full of himself, and indifferent to his nation’s crises. Edward VII might be promising, since I may not be around long enough to see any Charles III films.
   89. Hot Wheeling American in his sleazy salon Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:51 PM (#5607050)
To the Academy, as our very own Joseph T. Bivens is fond of saying, Fuuuuck You.

Deranged...not a good look...film at 11...call this screed what you want, it’s at least super f’n weird. I’m sorry you are the way you are. You clearly don’t like it.
   90. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:51 PM (#5607051)
I can see THE CROWN being seen as elite, perhaps. Lots of episodes and TALKING.
   91. Zonk, Genius of the Stables Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:53 PM (#5607053)
Remind me again why the British still have a Royal Family?


IDK, beats holding elections that risk the winner being a guy who think the job of President is the same thing.
   92. Shredder Posted: January 15, 2018 at 10:57 PM (#5607054)
We saw Molly's game this weekend. I'm pretty much just looking for 90-120 minutes of entertainment when I'm at a movie, and I found it entertaining. I generally like Sorkin stuff, and Jessica Chastain is nice to look at. I thought Idris Elba was pretty good in it as well. It's not gonna change the world or anything, but was was worth $14 for the two of us.
   93. Stormy JE wanted to milk the soft power dividend Posted: January 15, 2018 at 11:13 PM (#5607055)
I like The King’s Speech.
FWIW, Hitch thought the film was "extremely well-made" but warned that it "perpetrates a gross falsification of history."

For example:
Here again, the airbrush and the Vaseline are partners. When Neville Chamberlain managed to outpoint the coalition of the Labour Party, the Liberal Party, and the Churchillian Tories and to hand to his friend Hitler the majority of the Czechoslovak people, along with all that country's vast munitions factories, he received an unheard-of political favor. Landing at Heston Airport on his return from Munich, he was greeted by a royal escort in full uniform and invited to drive straight to Buckingham Palace. A written message from King George VI urged his attendance, "so that I can express to you personally my most heartfelt congratulations. … [T]his letter brings the warmest of welcomes to one who, by his patience and determination, has earned the lasting gratitude of his fellow countrymen throughout the Empire." Chamberlain was then paraded on the palace balcony, saluted by royalty in front of cheering crowds. Thus the Munich sell-out had received the royal assent beforethe prime minister was obliged to go to Parliament and justify what he had done. The opposition forces were checkmated before the game had begun. Britain does not have a written Constitution, but by ancient custom the royal assent is given to measures after they have passed through both houses of Parliament. So Tory historian Andrew Roberts, in his definitively damning essay "The House of Windsor and the Politics of Appeasement," is quite correct to cite fellow scholar John Grigg in support of his view that by acting as they did to grant pre-emptive favor to Chamberlain, King George VI and Queen Elizabeth (Colin Firth and Helena Bonham Carter to you) "committed the most unconstitutional act by a British Sovereign in the present century."

The private letters and diaries of the royal family demonstrate a continued, consistent allegiance to the policy of appeasement and to the personality of Chamberlain. King George's forbidding mother wrote to him, exasperated that more people in the House of Commons had not cheered the sellout. The king himself, even after the Nazi armies had struck deep north into Scandinavia and clear across the low countries to France, did not wish to accept Chamberlain's resignation. He "told him how grossly unfairly he had been treated, and that I was genuinely sorry." Discussing a successor, the king wrote that "I, of course, suggested [Lord] Halifax." It was explained to him that this arch-appeaser would not do and that anyway a wartime coalition could hardly be led by an unelected member of the House of Lords. Unimpressed, the king told his diary that he couldn't get used to the idea of Churchill as prime minister and had greeted the defeated Halifax to tell him that he wished he had been chosen instead. All this can easily be known by anybody willing to do some elementary research.
   94. greenback understands the nyt's effect on man Posted: January 15, 2018 at 11:33 PM (#5607060)
Do you guess that because you didn't bother to read my post where I said something entirely different?

Entirely different? That's laughable. If you work for the government in a public-facing position, and Good Guy Gary has to cover for you every time a gay person gets in your line, then you're not qualified for your job. The law can serve as a fig leaf otherwise, but this is Lincoln's dog-has-five-legs stuff.
   95. Lassus Posted: January 15, 2018 at 11:40 PM (#5607062)
#93 sounds a lot like an editorial.
   96. Random Transaction Generator Posted: January 16, 2018 at 12:19 AM (#5607067)
I generally like Sorkin stuff, and Jessica Chastain is nice to look at. I thought Idris Elba was pretty good in it as well.


I love Sorkin's writing, find Chastain to be very good in a lot her movies, and Elba is fantastic even in silly movies (like "The Losers", for example).

I'm hoping to see "Molly's Game" before it leaves the theatre, but if not it'll be one I'm looking for on Netflix as soon as it is available.

   97. Omineca Greg Posted: January 16, 2018 at 03:08 AM (#5607079)
As far as Scandinavian pop goes, I've always found Cat by the Sugarcubes to be a song I can return to again and again forever.

I'm curious, do people here consider Iceland "Scandinavian"? I don't, but I'm a purist, I don't even think Finland is part of Scandinavia (I'm agnostic on the Åland Islands). I don't have any kind of special authority though.

That's what happens when you hang out with Scanians. Warped me.
   98. Hysterical & Useless Posted: January 16, 2018 at 07:12 AM (#5607082)
Maybe Catatonia, but they seemed more late '90s.


Ten or 15 years ago* I happened upon their album "Equally Cursed and Blessed" at the public library. Like it very much. Ceris Matthews has a wonderfully intriguing voice.



*But not 11 or 14!
   99. Greg K Posted: January 16, 2018 at 07:58 AM (#5607091)
I'm with Ray in that I find historical figure bio-pics to be the most boring of all the movie genres.

Of course, number two on that list is probably action movies. I guess even great minds diverge on some points.
   100. BDC Posted: January 16, 2018 at 08:07 AM (#5607093)
Iceland is definitely Scandinavian. There’s a Nordic House in Reykjavík, the Scandinavia House in New York includes Iceland prominently, etc. But that’s only their opinion, you can define it any way you want :)
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