This seems like good news, so I’ll post it here: DirecTV has announced it will cease broadcasting OAN News, the batshit right-wing network promoting vaccine conspiracies. From an earlier Reuters report [emphasis mine]:

The announcement by DirecTV, which is 70% owned by AT&T, comes three months after a Reuters investigation revealed that OAN’s founder testified that AT&T inspired him to create the network. Court testimony also showed that OAN receives nearly all of its revenue from DirecTV.

Date posted: January 16, 2022 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

The Democrats are now the party of only trying to stop things from getting worse; they currently control the House, the Senate, and the Presidency and yet they have accomplished very little, either because they are so corrupt or so self-defeating or so uninterested as to have accepted the idea that Accomplishing Very Little is what they are there to do.

Kelsey McKinney writes for Defector about what going back to normal means; she’s put something into words that I’ve been feeling but haven’t been able to properly synthesize: the pandemic illustrates just how broken the American society we’ve built  actually is, how our elected officials can’t help us or fix it, and how a whole group of powerful interests don’t want things to get better. We are all experiencing trauma and most of us don’t have time or energy to realize or process it.

Defector is nominally a sports website but the writing reaches far above and beyond that. Every author is outstanding. I recommend subscribing—the site is owned by the authors and it’s worth every penny (and I don’t typically subscribe to many websites).

Date posted: January 15, 2022 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

…I think one of the things that was obviously very concerning is that Mississippi had suggested in its brief that women don’t need this right anymore, it’s OK to force them to be pregnant and give birth and have a child against their will because things are better now than they were 50 years ago.

Slate talked to Julie Rikelman, who argued the Jackson Women’s Health side of the abortion argument in the Supreme Court last Wednesday.

Date posted: December 6, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

Some aides huddled in the area just outside the Oval Office where Trump’s receptionist had her desk, hoping the president would wave them in and ask for their advice. But Trump was not seated behind the Resolute Desk; he was holed up in his private dining room, where the television was turned on, and some aides did not want to intrude on him there.

The Washington Post has done a great, harrowing longform story on the January 6 insurrection at the Capitol; it’s worth the read (if you have an Amazon Prime account, I think you get The Washington Post for free).

[Liz] Cheney also encountered Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), another Trump supporter trying to overturn the results. He told her: “We need to get the ladies away from the aisle. Let me help you.” Cheney told him: “Get away from me. You f—ing did this.”


Date posted: November 1, 2021 | Filed under politics | Leave a Comment »

Jen and I have been talking for years about how we can’t understand the white evangelical embrace of the Great Pumpkin and his predecessors. A new book goes into the history of evangelicalism and traces its roots back to the beginning of the previous century, and the racism, misogyny and intolerance at its foundation.

Instead of theological criteria, what comes to define evangelicalism is instead your stance on issues of gender and sexuality, the embrace of patriarchal authority, belief in female submission. That’s how you determine who is in and out of the fold.

There’s an excellent interview with the author in the Jacobin; I highly recommend reading it for the overview.

Date posted: October 18, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

Oh fucking hell. Apparently the asshats that run AT&T are super-conservative and have been funding and supporting OAN, the right-wing propaganda outlet our departed Pumpkin loved so much. Which means I’ve (through my wireless bill) been supporting this whole mess since 1999, when I got my first cellphone.

“If there was any story involving Trump, we had to only focus on either the positive information or basically create positive information,” said Marissa Gonzales, an OAN producer from 2019 until she resigned in 2020. “It was never, never the full truth.”

Date posted: October 7, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

“At that point, I said that whereas I had risked my life to defend my country while in the Air Force, I was not willing to risk my life to teach a class with an unmasked student during this pandemic,” Bernstein said in an email to The Red & Black. “I then resigned my retiree-rehire position.”

An 88-year-old psychology professor, who came out of retirement to teach a class at the University of Georgia, abruptly resigned after a student refused to wear a mask properly—this after he’d explained that he was at risk for dying from COVID.

Fuckin’ A, sir. 

Date posted: August 30, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

For more than 20 years, no matter what was reported, what we read in the headlines, efforts to build and train large-scale conventional security forces in Afghanistan and Iraq have mostly been an aimless, ham-fisted acronym soup of trial and error that never became the true main effort, and we are to blame for that.

I’m sure nobody saw this coming. What a colossal waste.

Date posted: August 15, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

Wherever the United States government contemplated a wrong turn, Rumsfeld was there first with his hard smile—squinting, mocking the cautious, shoving his country deeper into a hole. His fatal judgment was equaled only by his absolute self-assurance. He lacked the courage to doubt himself. He lacked the wisdom to change his mind.

At the Atlantic, George Packer writes a tidy eulogy for a terrible person and argues that he was actually worse than Robert McNamara, which is saying something.

Date posted: July 1, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

The Biden administration’s efforts to provide $4 billion in debt relief to minority farmers is encountering stiff resistance from banks, which are complaining that the government initiative to pay off the loans of borrowers who have faced decades of financial discrimination will cut into their profits and hurt investors.

Yup, you read that right. these are the same banks that have made millions on the backs of Black and minority farmers with predatory loans for decades. Don’t tell me racism doesn’t exist, and don’t tell me the free market is fair to everyone.

I voted for this administration to do things just like this. I hope they write some big fat checks and let the banks suck on it.

Date posted: May 19, 2021 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »