Thursday, March 09, 2017


White Working Class Whisperer Salena Zito won fame by predicting that Republicans would go for Trump, and holds it with her rare gift for finding ordinary WWC people who just naturally speak in fluent Republican Party Talking Points. In her latest column, her subjects retain their traditional, suspicious eloquence, but the Talking Points themselves have changed, as announced by the headline:
Trump’s voters have high hopes – even if they don’t expect miracles
Sounds like somebody got a memo about lowering expectations. Zito lays it out in a preamble:
MINGO JUNCTION, OHIO — Many people living in this town of used-to-be’s don’t expect their community will ever return to its glory days. 
They don’t anticipate the return to a downtown of bustling businesses patronized by a well-paid middle class working at the Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel plant. They want a little fresh paint on the vacant buildings, to cover up the sorrows lining the main business district’s ironically named Commerce Street. 
And they’re not expecting magic from President Trump.
Weird. I recall Trump was very explicit about bringing back steel and coal jobs. I recall also that swing state gomers were hooting and hollering over such jobs during the campaign -- "After asserting he's 'going to fight for steel businesses that have been taken away,' [Trump] said he wants to make Pennsylvania and Ohio 'the manufacturing hub of the world again.' The comments brought cheers from supporters inside a crowded gymnasium," etc. Yet listen to Zito's specimens now:
“All we need is to invest in ourselves with some small businesses up and down the street, and we’ll be fine,” said Rich Grimm, a retired steel worker. Grimm is aspirational, pragmatic about the return of steel or coal jobs, and determined.
They don't need heavy industry -- they just need to invest in themselves, and they will, soon's as they work up the nerve to dig up Grandpappy's corpse, pry out the gold teeth, and take them to some big-city pawnshop for a grubstake in a nail salon! And a little fresh paint!

Even more than that, what Zito's WWC folk need is the GOP platform, dumbed down for credulous newspaper readers:
They’re happy with what Trump has done so far — limiting US entry from certain countries; plans for a wall along the US-Mexico border; taking the ObamaCare bull by the horns — but it’s tax and regulation reform that they all believe will truly help their community. 
“Look, we all know the steel jobs aren’t coming back to the degree they once were, nor the coal jobs,” said Grimm. “Honestly, we never expected that."
You city slickers have got the salt-of-the-earth guys all wrong -- they don't want (ugh) steel and coal jobs, they just want to get rid of immigrants, immiserate the poor, and give rich people a big, sloppy tax cut.

What happened? My guess is, with Trump "taking the ObamaCare bull by the horns" -- i.e., letting Paul Ryan fuck it up in exchange for Ryan letting him use his office for grifts -- things are going to start collapsing pretty soon, and the MAGA dream is going to look pretty stupid, so advance men and women like Zito have been sent to get the gaslights going full blast. Hell, in a few months they'll be telling us The Leader has always said coal and steel mills are an environmental menace!

UPDATE. Comments are terrific. Example: "Mingo Junction ain't exactly a backwater," says Worriedman. "...It's an hour outside of Pittsburgh. The steel plant, which closed in 2009 after 8 years of Democratic malfeasance and incompetence, will start producing steel this month. Trump works fast! Ungrateful fucks." And do check out keta's September 2017 story datelined BENDOVER, PA:
Local painter Jess Splurtz agrees. “Obama never gave us a drop,” he says. “With Trump I feel like the the hose is directed at us and we’re gettin’ it good, enough to really bask in. Sure, the jobs ain’t come back, and the health care looks to be cut off for most of us, and the mental health and opioid addiction services my family uses a lot look to be cut off completely, but you know what? There ain’t been a dark-skinned loafer seen in Bendover for over a month now, not since them ICE fellers took ‘em all away.”

Wednesday, March 08, 2017


As you may remember from back in January, after Trump hired former Nixon home health aide and Fox nudge Monica Crowley to be a national security advisor, someone noticed she heavily plagiarized other people's work for her dissertation and for a book. If you click through those links, you'll see we're not talking about a couple lines here and there, which might be excused by innocent errors or sloth, but hundreds of misappropriated words, indicative of a casual attitude, let us say, toward the intellectual property of others.

Her publisher pulled her book, and Crowley lost her White House gig, claiming to prefer to "remain in New York to pursue other opportunities." She went quiet awhile, but now she's back. Are you expecting perhaps contrition? Even Ben Domenech pretended to be contrite -- but that was years ago, before the New Age. Now:
Monica Crowley: Plagiarism Charges Were a 'Political Hit Job'
Ain't even kidding.
...“There is a very toxic—and it’s getting increasingly toxic and poisonous—atmosphere of personal destruction in Washington and the media...It’s always sort of been there, but now it’s at a whole different level,” Crowley told Hannity. 
“In some ways, I was something of the canary in the coal mine -- the attack on me was a test,” she continued. “What happened to me, what happened to General Flynn, what’s happened to Attorney General Sessions and others is all of a piece. There is a very dangerous and very effective destabilization campaign underway against this president, his administration, and his agenda." 
Crowley warned that forces are not only trying to delegitimize Trump, they want to personally destroy him. 
"They are out for blood," she declared..."
That this utterly-refutable-I-mean-receipts-and-everything liar is conflating her situation with that of our truth-averse president is just too on the nose -- but, then, isn't everything these days? I'm beginning to think that's how we'll be identified by future historians, assuming (perhaps unfairly) that we have any.

Tuesday, March 07, 2017


You smart folks have probably noticed that the GOP's American Health Care Act that's supposed to repeal and replace Obamacare neither repeals not replaces it, but keeps it dead-alive as a horrible zombie to kill as many Americans as possible.

You may have noticed, too, that having to finally show their cards after eight years of bullshitting -- the political equivalent of locking yourself in the studio for years working on your double-album masterpiece, and emerging with a boombox tape of bathtub farts -- seems to have deranged top Republicans. They're saying all kinds of crazy shit, and I mean crazier than usual, like bugfuck crazy. There's HHS Secretary Tom Price's back-asswards "Medicaid is a program that by and large has decreased the ability for folks to gain access to care." There's Jason Chaffetz's suggestion to Americans greedily lamenting the loss of their coverage that "maybe rather than getting that new iPhone that they just love and they want to go spend hundreds of dollars on that, maybe they should invest it in their own health care" (for which he delivered a classic non-apology after people got mad).  There's the steady stream of breath-cooled butter turds emerging from the mouth of Paul Ryan, etc.

Normally in situations like this the politicians say anodyne nothings and leave it up to the propagandists to embarrass themselves. Mind you, those rightbloggers who did find the courage to emerge from their spider holes, or were pushed, did bucket-foot it: take Dan MacLaughlin, who at National Review is forced to admit the bill has to be a mess because people won't like having their coverage wrenched away and their fingers have to be broken one at a time before they'll let go:
A total and immediately effective repeal with no backup plan would create losers who would be angry and sympathetic. A lot of the distortion in the intra-Republican healthcare debate – including the Rube Goldberg nature of the already-being-rewritten House plan and the demands by Senate moderates to protect people covered by Medicaid expansion - is driven not by a desire to produce the best plan for the country’s future, but rather by a desire to address the difficulty of transitioning out of the bind created by Obamacare’s entrenchment over the past four years. That’s understandable and necessary – conservatives take the world as it already is...
One imagines the American people saying, "Um, I'm right here."  (Oh, and if you want to see even worse, check out his colleague Charles Two Middle Initials Cooke arguing that what's really needed is a better communications strategy. Remember when that was supposed to be Trump's genius?)

This general derangement has, I'm afraid, a simple explanation. Everyone involved knows the bill is garbage. The Leader continues to yammer how great, so great, you'll love it, etc., but no one believes him -- except for that relatively small core of living Twitter eggs who were called deplorables back before it was decided This Is Why Trump Won so we better let them wreck the country in peace.

Because anyone else they talk to either laughs at them or tells them to get fucked, the GOP have to focus on these guys. So that's who they talk to. And to them they talk the political equivalent of baby talk -- angry, vicious baby talk. That's what Price and Chaffetz and Ryan and all of them (including I guess Cooke, who I doubt is dumb enough to believe that a bill with several non-financial aspects can actually be passed in "reconciliation") are doing. It doesn't have to make sense. It just has to keep Junior happy. That's why this ridiculous bill actual devotes several pages to how the government will take money back from Medicaid recipients if they win the lottery. To you it seems crazy, a non sequitur, but to the eggs, it's hell no, you ain't givin' mah money to no lottery winners, they don't need it! If they could have gotten away with a No Medicaid Fer Muslims Nor Coloreds section, believe me, they would have, so they did the closest thing they could manage.

And nothing else they do is going make any more sense than that. Hell, the final bill may be written in actual gibberish, or pictograms, or assembled from images cut out of magazines like a dream board. Reason has never been their friend, and now they've learned to embrace its opposite.

UPDATE. See the title of this thing? I rest my case.

Monday, March 06, 2017


...about Trump's accusations against Obama, and the unbecoming swiftness with which conservatives went along with them. I literally haven't seen any big-time rightwing guys (besides the ones like Max Boot and David Frum who have already given up on him) waving this one off; it seems everyone's either crossed or paused at the Rubicon, and those who've crossed will go for anything, no matter how nuts.

Lots of outtakes. I have to say I'm impressed with Mike Pence's nerve in demanding an apology from AP for revealing his wife's AOL screen name -- in the story where they revealed Pence botching his email worse than Hillary Clinton ever did.  Thus he managed to make the story about them rather than his own malfeasance -- which just shows that Trump's not the only grade-A shitheel at the highest levels of government. (I'm also impressed with the way Benny Johnson took the opportunity to cement himself to Pence's jock; boy, that's one guy will never miss a meal.)

Admirable too is the message discipline -- to use the polite term -- of the lower-order Trumpkins. Here's a shittweet ("[emoji] Well well well looks like Hillary knew about the wiretap [emoji] she tweeted about it one week prior to the election [emoji]") promulgating a Gateway Pundit item, "Hillary Was Tipped Off On Trump Wiretap – Tweeted About it One Week Prior to Election." If you read that item -- which is more than most people will do, and that includes the ones who will later claim it to be revealed truth -- you will find that Clinton was "tipped off" by... an article at Slate which was actually about computer analysts unconnected to Clinton who found suspicious activity on a Trump server. But it doesn't have to make sense -- it just has to have the right keywords, and smell. Throw in a few unrelated slurs ("TGP reported earlier that the first FISA request came right after AG Loretta Lynch met with Bill Clinton on the tarmac") and you'll got the political equivalent of a false memory.

That's not even counting the guys who post a headline like "Paul Ryan Confirms Obama Wiretapped Trump Illegally" and then reproduce an interview in which Ryan says the exact opposite. The lack of even rudimentary creativity is the closest thing to an actual abyss I've looked into in some time.

Kudos also to Jonathan S. Tobin for the “advice from your mortal enemies” winner of the week: “If Democrats Aren’t Careful, Russia Could Become Their Benghazi.” Pffft, thanks, pal!

Thursday, March 02, 2017


[Scene: A garishly appointed suite in Trump Tower. TRUMP and SESSIONS enter.]

TRUMP: Jeffy, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship. Listen, you want champagne? Caviar? Some mints?

SESSIONS: (laughing) Now, Mistah Trump, some folks might think you were tryin' to bribe me! An' if ah am to work with you, everything must be above-boahd.

TRUMP: Spoken like an attorney -- in general! Get it? Attorney? General? You play your cards right, you never know. C'mon, have a mint.

SESSION: Ah'd really rather not.

TRUMP: (Holds out mint) Attorney? GEN-e-ral? (SESSIONS takes the mint.) Makes your breath nice. I eat 'em like candy when I'm boffing Melania. It's the little things that make a marriage.

[Sound of toilet flush. SESSIONS looks with slight alarm at TRUMP.]

TRUMP. Relax, people come and go around here.

SESSION: (nervous laughter) I hope you don't plan on runnin' the White House that-a-way!

TRUMP: Just you wait.

[SERGEY KISLYAK saunters in, dressed in a bathrobe and gold chains. He and TRUMP exchange bear hugs.]

TRUMP: Sergey! You get the fruit basket? Whoo! I smell vodka.

KISLYAK: (turning toward SESSIONS) So -- is munchkin our new friend? (grabs SESSIONS' hands) You have tiny face like babushka!

SESSIONS: Thank you, Mistah, uh --

KISLYAK: (puts finger to lips, then returns to grasping a nervous SESSIONS' hands) I have no name.

TRUMP: Yeah, he looks like the Russian Ambassador, but really he's just from housekeeping.

KISLYAK: Yes, I am like how you say the plumbers. And now we are all plumbers. Like the Nixon plumbers! But these plumbers, they don't go to jail -- hah, Meester Attorneys General? Ba ha ha ha!

SESSIONS: (yanks hands away) Pahdon me, suh! (Goes to TRUMP, whispers urgently) What in tarnation are you doin', Mistah Trump? Ah can't be meetin' with the Russians and you at the same tahm! It ain't seemly!

TRUMP: Look, you can't put the ketchup back in the bottle, Jeffy. What's done is done. Now you got two choices: You can resign from the campaign -- but you can't say why, because of the NDA, so you'll just look like a big dummy. Or you can stay and have some snacks and listen to my good friend Sergey from housekeeping talk about international policy.

SESSION: (swallows hard, sits on couch) Ah think ah will have thet drink now. Y'all have any sour mash?

TRUMP: Try the Trump Bourbon. The best bourbon or sour mash or whatever you people call it. Made from potatoes. Sergey, what'll you have?

KISLYAK: Syria! (He and TRUMP laugh.) More vodka, tovarich. And maybe prostitute.

TRUMP: (dialing room service) That's what I like to see -- everyone relaxed and having a good time. Now, Sergei -- what's it worth to our "friend" to get Alaska back?

Wednesday, March 01, 2017


Like the old joke punchline goes: You know it's Moses, I know it's Moses -- business is business. Since Trump mainly pulled his punches on the media (but not immgrants, he still hates them!), sprinkled in some pretty promises on infrastructure and family leave, and particularly led the audience in clapping for a military widow instead of saying he likes Navy SEALs who don't get killed, his speech has been widely counted a success by even allegedly woke media hands like Van Jones. It's not because they don't know any better. They know their audience will go for all the bullshit and they don't want to be seen as harshing the buzz with fact-checks and other boring treason. Business is business! And they want that lollipop.

The whole thing's a disgrace, but there's one part that no one else seems to have noticed that bugs me:
Then, in 2016, the earth shifted beneath our feet. The rebellion started as a quiet protest, spoken by families of all colors and creeds --- families who just wanted a fair shot for their children, and a fair hearing for their concerns.

But then the quiet voices became a loud chorus -- as thousands of citizens now spoke out together, from cities small and large, all across our country.

Finally, the chorus became an earthquake -- and the people turned out by the tens of millions, and they were all united by one very simple, but crucial demand, that America must put its own citizens first ... because only then, can we truly MAKE AMERICA GREAT AGAIN.
Since we became a great nation, our official rhetoric has been (excepting certain lapses) increasingly aspirational and inclusive -- the language of mission and sacrifice, of reaching beyond oneself: "you shall not crucify mankind on a cross of gold," "the world must be made safe for democracy," "rendezvous with destiny," "pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend," "a thousand points of light," etc. You may have as I do mixed feelings about the sentiments, or even purely negative ones, but that's how we've been, and now we have a change. Now, even though our country is stinking rich and mighty, the language of outreach and aspiration is being replaced with "Where's mine?" Maybe it's to be expected that, after decades of our ruling class squeezing the life out of the rest of us, citizens would turn bitter and insular and less inclined to embrace the idea of a shared destiny. But the transition from the dignity of the working man to the anger of the WWC is, in my estimation, not progress.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017


If you saw Trump in his Fox and Friends interview saying that Obama is sabotaging him --
"...Do you believe President Obama is behind it and if he is, is that a violation of the so-called unsaid presidents' code?" Trump was asked.

"No, I think he is behind it. I also think it is politics, that's the way it is," Trump replied.

Trump then discussed the leaks that have disrupted his first month in office.

"You never know what's exactly happening behind the scenes. You know, you're probably right or possibly right, but you never know," Trump said in the interview, a clip of which was released Monday night. "No, I think that President Obama is behind it because his people are certainly behind it. And some of the leaks possibly come from that group, which are really serious because they are very bad in terms of national security. But I also understand that is politics. In terms of him being behind things, that's politics. And it will probably continue."
-- and you were wondering, "what the fuck is wrong with this fucktard's brain?" it might help to look at the site that was till recently managed by his chief strategist, where they run stories like "SEVEN WAYS OBAMA IS TRYING TO SABOTAGE THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION," with such compelling proof points as "Let’s not forget Obama’s acts of rhetorical sabotage, such as describing Trump’s presidential campaign as a crime against American class and racial harmony, or his wife wailing that all hope was lost for America’s children." Or at another, longer-lived propaganda mill, the New York Post, Paul Sperry, explaining "How Obama is scheming to sabotage Trump’s presidency." Apparently the former President told supporters to “move forward to protect what we’ve accomplished" and Eric Holder is trying to stop "what he and Obama call GOP 'gerrymandering' of congressional districts." Why, in an enlightened modern state like Russia that'd get you thrown in jail.

Also, two government employees who served under Obama's communications advisor Ben Rhodes have quit since Trump got in, and written about why they quit in magazines. To most of you that's "no shit," but to Kristinn Taylor it's "Obama Scheme to Sabotage Trump Admin With High Profile Moles Exposed?" Her report, largely cribbed from The Weekly Standard, contains such bombshells as "Smith also reports sources said Ahmed did not actually work all her eight days at the Trump administration, that she took off several days and only worked four days." Taylor also calls on Congress to "investigate Barack Obama, Ben Rhodes and others in this unprecedented abuse of power to sabotage national security and the Trump administration."

So it may well be that Trump is paranoid, but paranoia is also part of the plan. These hobgoblin stories may only affect the most deranged, inbred, hate-crazed citizens, but you have to remember: they're his base.

Monday, February 27, 2017


...about the Milo thing. I did a little something about it Monday but this is, as they say, a fuller treatment.

Among the outtakes was a section on the flare-up in Milo enthusiasm among the trad right after his appearance provoked a riot at Berkeley. National Review did six or seven stories about Yiannopoulos' violated free speech rights, which I'm sure he found as funny as they found it outrageous. But none of them could match the hall-of-fame headline from Reason's Brendan O'Neill: “Frederick Douglass Would Have Ardently Supported Milo Yiannopoulos’s Free Speech Rights.” A gay guy and a black guy (albeit dead) to prove they were no bigots! No wonder he had them going for so long.

Thursday, February 23, 2017


Between the fallout from the fall of Milo Yiannopoulos and Attorney General Boss Hogg's rescission of transgender students' bathroom protections, conservatives are really letting their freak flag fly. There are no pale pastels in their sexual politics now. The betrayal of their former sassy gay friend Milo has sent them fleeing back to the snuggly safety of their old bigotries, and the power play against trans kids has reaffirmed them in their new ones. It's like they can at last be free of even the feeblest pretense at toleration.

(Not so Rod Dreher who, while kvelling over the bathroom ban -- and casting Betsy DeVos, for her brief bullshit feint at protecting trans students, as part of a treasonously tolerant tradition that "surrendered intellectually and in terms of authentic discipleship one or two generations ago" -- yet protests for thousands of words because an Atlantic writer noticed he's obsessed with gays; heavens, no, he doesn't hate them, he says, he just considers them an abomination and an existential threat -- why, he says, "one of my oldest and dearest friends is gay." I wonder if the guy's parents know.) (Which reminds me: There's a Lenny Bruce bit that's apparently not online in which he talks about a friend who's "so queer he's a truck driver"; when Bruce goes to see his clueless yiddishe momme and she says "you wouldn't believe about my son," as Bruce is bracing for it, she says, wonderingly, "he didn't get married yet." Lenny Bruce was the greatest.)

I'll keep my powder dry for the Village Voice column. Suffice to say every wingnut in Christendom is harrumphing like David French does today at National Review: "Not long ago, if school policies purposefully exposed girls to male genitals, they’d be subject to a backbreaking sexual harassment lawsuit," blah blah, as if 1.)  a scared trans pre-teen who's bucking several century-tons of social prejudice to be whom she believes herself to be is the same thing as a grownup child molester, and  2.)  the ladies room were some sort of open-air genital display area.

I find it hard to believe even the dimmest gomer in Fritters, Alabama thinks that's how it is, let alone a fucking Ivy League White Working Class Whisperer like French. Yet still he pretends. Jesus Christ, sometimes I want to just grab these people and tell them what Chris in All My Sons tells his father: Don't you live in the world? What the hell are you? You're not even an animal, no animal kills his own, what are you?

But for now, let's go back to Milo, and not even the Milo-deniers whose sudden knee-weakness is so gutless and amusing, but to D.C. McAllister, one of the dimmer bulbs at The Federalist, whose pro-Milo column actually begins with "Editor’s note: This article contains graphic descriptions of sex crimes."

OK, thinks I -- I'm not a reactionary, I know Yiannopoulos does not admit to molesting children and claims he was abused as a boy, and I'm open to counterpoint. Alas, McAllister is not interested in defending Milo as a human being, but only as a cudgel to beat liberals:
Yes, he’s provocative, contrarian, outlandish, and offensive, poking his finger in the eye of just about everyone around him. But he also conveys a message that the Left finds unacceptable. His attacks on feminism and identity politics, his fierce defense of free speech on college campuses and freedom of personal choice without being policed by those who are politically correct—all of these ideas offend the Left...
[The Left's] outrage is what it has always been—hatred for anyone who opposes them. And Milo certainly opposes them, often and with flair.
The Left is so bad, I'll even back a flairy against them! But worse is yet to come: McAllister gets into the Liberal Hypocrisy shtick and, after shaking a fist over Roman Polanski -- whose exoneration on rape charges was, I believe, part of the 2016 National Democratic platform -- takes a wrong turn at Albuquerque:
It seems our culture is more apt to defend the sexually immoral than to scorn them—unless they’re outside the liberal cabal, of course. Except that’s not always the case either, something that should make Republicans who are also attacking Milo stop and reflect. Libertarian Camille Paglia often speaks on college campuses, writes for magazines, is often quoted favorably by conservatives, and sells books—all of which Milo has now been denied in one form another. Yet, Paglia unapologetically supports pedophilia.
Wow, okay, I thought at first, good for her, she's willing to own up to Paglia, whose long status as a rightwing nutjob I've written about at length. Little did I know that, after listing a bunch of Paglia's man-boy-love encomiums, McAllister would come to this:
Paglia has given us more than anything Milo has said on the topic, yet he’s run out on the rails. Why? For one thing, Paglia has been around awhile and has cred with many liberals.
As they have always done, they not only ignored her deviant views but embraced them. However, if she were an avid Trump supporter in the same vein as Milo, opposing liberals at every turn and writing those things in this climate, you can be sure the torches would be lit up for her as well. She would be facing opposition greater than any outcry she experienced in the past, which came mostly from conservatives on truly moral grounds.
Wait -- you mean the Camille Paglia of "Feminist Camille Paglia slams ‘disaster’ Hillary Clinton: ‘She is a woman without accomplishment’"? The Camille Paglia of "I was wrong about Donald Trump: Camille Paglia on the GOP front-runner’s refreshing candor (and his impetuousness, too)"? The Camille Paglia of "Camille Paglia: PC feminists misfire again, as fearful elite media can’t touch Donald Trump"? She's getting dissed because she's a liberal?

Sometimes I think I should just show a picture of a florid wingnut and a projector every day and just leave it at that.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017


I saw Bryan Curtis' story at The Ringer, "Sportswriting Has Become a Liberal Profession — Here’s How It Happened." It's got some interesting history, and the observation that more sportswriters are liberal now than in the days of Dick Young has to my knowledge not been remarked on before, so good for him.

 At the same time: So what? It's not like it gets in the way: If I want to follow a sports story I go to the New York Times and, though the Good Grey Lady is supposed to be the nerve center of the Liberal Media, I don't receive any discernible propaganda with my box scores. Look at this story about the DeMarcus Cousins trade, for example: There's nary a call to resistance nor an #IAmMuslimToo hashtag in the thing. I understand they put a little more mustard on the stories at Deadspin, but if I want straight sports I know where to get it.

Well, at The Week Michael Brendan Dougherty bursts a blood vessel over this because
Predictably (and perhaps self-interestedly), I think the increasing ideological uniformity of sports writing is bad for sports journalism and for sports themselves. And in the way that it encourages conformism and intellectual laziness, it is probably bad for causes dear to liberals in sports.
We might have stopped at "self-interestedly" -- Dougherty does some sports journalism himself, and he's no less inclined than any other type of wingnut scribe to indignation over how the Lefties run the intellectual professions. And that "bad for causes dear to liberals in sports" is concern trolling you could spot from an airplane. And the bit about "conformism and intellectual laziness" -- this is sportswriting we're talking about, right? It's not all Grantland Rice; hell, it's at least as loaded with hacks as any of the other departments. Besides, to the extent someone tries to bring social perspectives into a sports essay, he's actually doing more work, not less, so I'd hardly call it lazy.

Dougherty seems to sense he hasn't got much there, so he tries a twist on the old Liberals Are Soulless Technocrats spin, claiming that liberal sportswriters are all front-row tryhards so they identify with manicured college-boy front-office types ("the liberalism on offer on sports pages is rather infatuated with the norms and aspirations of the class of people from which journalists are drawn") whereas, one supposes, conservative sportswriters like Dougherty come from dockyards out of an old black-and-white Warner Brothers movie and get along so great with the players that they all go to titty bars together.

On and on it goes, and like all wingnut liberal-media bitchfests reaches the point where the author, in his righteousness, disgorges a howler:
The lack of intelligent conservatives in sports, or at least their relative shyness about their ideas, also allows progressive sportswriters to advance ideas without challenge, sometimes all the way into dead ends. Take the debate about Native American mascots in logos. Of course it makes perfect sense to remove or alter any logos that offend people. But all mascots are reductive caricatures. Was the problem that the logos were offensive or that there is so little representation of Native Americans in our culture that their presence as mascots seems mocking by default? 
He's got a point. Look at the '40s White Sox logo -- that's one weird looking honky! If white people can take that, what are all you injuns complaining about? Hang on, sports fans, Dougherty ain't done cogitating:
Has no one stopped to notice there is something odd about an anti-racism that will cause an evermore diverse country to declare rooting for white-faced mascots the only safe thing to do? How will this deletion of all non-white faces look in 50 years?
You all remember how, when politically correct liberals chased Stepin Fetchit out of the movies it wiped out opportunities for black actors, and a starstruck kid named Sidney Poitier had to pack up his "Lay Z. Shine" character, move back to the Bahamas and sell insurance.

Yeah, the sports pages are really missing this guy. But to prove it can always get worse, David French picks up the theme at National Review:
Sure, [Curtis is] tolerant enough to leave room for a “David Frum or Ross Douthat of sportswriting,” a person with “wrong-headed but interesting arguments.” But here’s the caveat: Curtis is tolerant “as long as nobody believe[s] them.” If the Ross Douthat of sportswriting developed a real following, would the profession unite to excise the political malignancy?
"Ross Douthat here, calling the Michigan-UCLA game, a paradigm in which we may perceive the fallen state of man. As Chesterton once said --" [sound of massive wedgie]
I bring up Bryan Curtis and sportswriting because you simply can’t understand Milo Yiannopoulos...
HOOOONK oh sorry there goes the buzzer!  Tune in next week when Charles C.W. Cooke denounces the media for not employing more rightwing fashion writers. 

Monday, February 20, 2017


I see Milo Yiannopoulos' friends have turned on him. Just kidding -- they were never his friends; just a bunch of conservatives and libertarians who took him up because, one, he hated things they also hated (liberals, women, the transgendered, et alia); two, he celebrated things they also celebrated, primarily the vicious, spiteful treatment of anyone weaker than themselves; and three, because he was ostentatiously gay -- indeed an old-fashioned caricature of homosexuality straight out of the Liberace playbook -- and allowed himself to be associated with them, which gave conservatives and libertarians two things they thought would advantage them in the dreary Culture Wars they're always pursuing: glamour and victim status.

Looking through my few writings about him, I find some tellings details. When Harry Potter actress Emma Watson stood up for feminism at the United Nations, a bunch of wingnuts laced into her, and Yiannopoulos was right in there with his Breitbart essay, "THE UN'S RISIBLE #HEFORSHE CAMPAIGN: POINTLESS SELF-FLAGELLATION FOR SEX-STARVED BETA MALES":
Emma Watson, the UN’s chosen cheerleader, who of course takes radical steps to avoid conforming to male ideas of female beauty, as the picture above illustrates, gave a speech to launch this otiose initiative while wearing perhaps the most expensive, figure-hugging overcoat I think I have ever seen. Is this the sort of person from whom we now take lectures on the sexualisation of women’s bodies?

I hate to be crude, but is it possible the Harry Potter star wears those ten-thousand dollar outfits, with jackets cut perfectly to accentuate every curve of her body, her hair snipped and tousled by the most exclusive stylists in the world, because she in fact really rather likes, and financially profits from, the idea of men waving their wands at her?
She wore nice clothes; she was asking for it. We hear this kind of sick glurge from wingnuts all the time, and even people who never heard of Freud or Germaine Greer know what brackish swamps of sexual frustration it comes from. But when Milo did it, you couldn't just say it was because he wanted to hate-fuck little Hermione, and conservatives loved having him for cover. Here was a he-man woman-hater with a gay pass!

And that went double for Gamergate, that festival of rape and death threats by suckling Pepes. Yiannopoulos was all the way up in that with essays like "FEMINIST BULLIES TEARING THE VIDEO GAME INDUSTRY APART." Once again he could say the things straight choads were embarrassed, or vaguely felt they were supposed to be embarrassed, to say: "These women purposefully court – and then exploit – boisterous, unpleasant reactions from astonished male gamers and use them to attract attention to themselves..." You heard Milo -- she was leading us on! "Let’s be honest. We’re all used to feeling a niggling suspicion that 'death threats' sent to female agitators aren’t all they’re cracked up to be." Bitch lied, she set us up! Listen to our sassy gay friend!

It makes perfect sense that Yiannopoulos became a patron saint of libertarians like Robby Soave of Reason, who lovingly described how Milo mao-maoed the liberal fascists. "No, Yiannopoulos isn't disparaging gays (though he wouldn't care if they were upset)," Soave wrote: "he is gay himself, a fact to which he makes frequent (and X-rated) references." Boo-ya, libtards, who's got the sassy gay friend now! And Yiannopoulos's spectacular public appearances -- crowded as they were with opportunistic reporters, excited neo-Nazis, and black bloc protesters -- to Soave suggested "that some students are sick to death of the liberal orthodoxies being drilled into them during every waking moment of their time in school. What if millions of Americans feel the same way?"

As you may have guessed, that was where Soave connected Yiannopoulos with Trump --  because they were both against Political Correctness, which Soave found refreshing and perhaps redemptive. "Trump's backers despise the political correctness of liberal elites," he said. ." least with Trump, they can enjoy the show and collect some small measure of vengeance against their PC overlords."

Well, Trump did win, and so did Milo, for a while. But Trump has an advantage over Milo: that of actual power. Both men get over with outrageous shtick -- they're  contrarians, provocateurs! Their backers despise the political correctness of liberal elites, it says here!  And when they go too far, usually they just have to say you didn't hear them right, and they can go on their merry way, confident their followers will blame whatever outrage they've caused on Fake News.

Milo tried to do that with his pedo-tapes (in "a note for idiots" -- ha, that Milo!) -- but found that he was suddenly no longer the Right's sassy gay friend. Not because he had sex with children himself -- there's no evidence he did; interestingly, it seems he was the one exploited as a child --  but because, from the conservatives' perspective, he did something worse: He embarrassed them. It was fine when he was whooping up those wanton cruelties and bigotries a normal American can get away with. But pedophilia is a Hard Limit, at least socially.

Conservatives could have done a love-the-sinner, hate-the-sin thing, but that would have required charity, and bitter experience has taught us all that in America this is not a Christian precept.  They could have said that though Yiannopoulos had put himself beyond the pale, his principles were still sound, and they could put aside his failings the way intellectuals put aside the anti-Semitism of Mencken or the racism of Larkin, and cleave instead to his aesthetic legacy; but when his book deal and CPAC spot evaporated, it became obvious that there was nothing like a principle or an aesthetic legacy at all left to defend -- just a savage clown show that no one wanted to see anymore. (Even Soave is edging away from him. Did I say "even"? Ha, I meant "of course.")

Remember this if you remember nothing else about what happened, for Milo sure knows it: even if they let you into their clubhouse, these people are not your friends.


...about the week of General Flynn and wacky press conferences. Trump's public appearances always astonish me, possibly because I'm old and used to Presidents who don't act like Al Capone in The Untouchables. But Il Douche keeps finding a way to lower the bar and last week's rambling, belligerent pressers veered into last-words-of-Dutch-Shultz territory. And our true subjects, the conservative intellectual establishment, keep finding ways to call his shit Shinola.

Sunday, February 19, 2017


Nothing I like better after a long week of reading rightwing idiots than to curl up with some libtard hivemind received opinion at the New York Times! Say, what's this?
[Jerry] Medford should be a natural ally for liberals trying to convince the country that Mr. Trump was a bad choice. But it is not working out that way. Every time Mr. Medford dips into the political debate — either with strangers on Facebook or friends in New York and Los Angeles — he comes away feeling battered by contempt and an attitude of moral superiority. 
“We’re backed into a corner,” said Mr. Medford, 46, whose business teaches people to be filmmakers. “There are at least some things about Trump I find to be defensible. But they are saying: ‘Agree with us 100 percent or you are morally bankrupt. You’re an idiot if you support any part of Trump.’ ” 
He added: “I didn’t choose a side. They put me on one.”
Sigh. There's no getting away from it: From downmarket White Working Class Whisperers like Salena Zito to the Good Grey Lady (incarnated here by Sabrina Tabernise), seems everyone who's anyone agrees liberals are to blame for Trump voters. For one thing, as above, we viciously refuse to agree with them. Who does that? For another...
Late last year, [Medford] hit it off with a woman in New York he met online. They spent hours on the phone. They made plans for him to visit. But when he mentioned he had voted for Mr. Trump, she said she was embarrassed and didn’t know if she wanted him to come. (He eventually did, but she lied to her friends about his visiting.) 
“It invalidated anything that’s good about me, just because of how I voted. Poof, it’s gone.”
...liberals will only have sex with them on the downlow. This bitch wouldn't take Jerry to meet her snooty New York friends just because he insists on wearing his MAGA cap and his FUCK YOUR FEELINGS shirt! Well, at least we can be reasonably sure he didn't give her an orgasm. That'll show her!

He's not the only one who suffers. Pity Ann O'Connell, "a retired administrative assistant in Syracuse who voted for Mr. Trump":
Mrs. O’Connell feels hopeless. She has deleted all her news feeds on Facebook and she tries to watch less TV. But politics keeps seeping in. 
“I love Meryl Streep, but you know, she robbed me of that wonderful feeling when I go to the movies to be entertained,” she said. 
Even Hollywood stars won't kiss their ass! What kind of  topsy-turvy world is this?

Oddly enough, there is nothing in the story, nor anywhere else in the Times, suggesting that Trump voters should in turn reach out to the other side. They seem to assume Trump voters are too fragile to take this kind of initiative themselves, and that the very people these voters are constantly calling traitors should be rushing to their assistance like home health aides.

That's an incredibly condescending attitude, but since these folks play along with it I guess it's justified. I've said it before and I'll say it again: Conservatism is not a political philosophy but a last resort -- something you turn to when you can no longer bear to take responsibility for your own actions.

Thursday, February 16, 2017


Did you catch that Trump presser? Here's a bit:
Nobody talks about that. I didn't do anything for Russia. I've done nothing for Russia. Hillary Clinton gave them 20 percent of our uranium. Hillary Clinton did a reset, remember? With the stupid plastic button that made us all look like a bunch of jerks. Here, take a look. He looked at her like, what the hell is she doing with that cheap plastic button?

Hillary Clinton - that was the reset, remember it said reset? Now if I do that, oh, I'm a bad guy. If we could get along with Russia, that's a positive thing. We have a very talented man, Rex Tillerson, who's going to be meeting with them shortly and I told him. I said "I know politically it's probably not good for me." The greatest thing I could do is shoot that ship that's 30 miles off shore right out of the water.

Everyone in this country's going to say "oh, it's so great." That's not great. That's not great. I would love to be able to get along with Russia. Now, you've had a lot of presidents that haven't taken that tack. Look where we are now. Look where we are now. So, if I can - now, I love to negotiate things, I do it really well, and all that stuff. But - but it's possible I won't be able to get along with Putin.

Maybe it is. But I want to just tell you, the false reporting by the media, by you people, the false, horrible, fake reporting...
In the words of Curly from the Three Stooges, Ngnnnyaahh.

I can already tell you how the brethren will cover it -- see Hindrocket's praise for The Leader's gibberish at the Netanyahu presser yesterday. Turned out he wasn't the only one who picked a full ear of corn out of that shit, by the way -- dig Jonathan S. Tobin:
His statement was typically Trumpian in that it displayed either his ignorance or his lack of interest in the details, but it’s clear that the president wasn’t supporting either the one-state or the two-state option. Instead, what he was doing was endorsing a diplomatic principle that is just as important: The U.S. cannot impose peace on terms that aren’t accepted by the parties, and we shouldn’t behave in a manner that encourages Palestinians’ ongoing refusal to make peace.
"It's clear"! But first ya have to buy these special Trump-listening earphones! For you, six bits and the future of the Republic!

Anyway, that's what we can expect on this one, and henceforth. Trump-friendly, quasi-legit outlets will produce some less-crazy-sunding snippets and headlines telling the rubes that Trump was attacking that liberal media again, a la "Trump goes on marathon rant against the media," New York Post, and "Trump unloads on media's 'hatred' in singular press conference" -- Washington Examiner. The true rightbloggers will say the liberal media is the real story, as just dropped at Townhall:
Chuck Todd's Scorn: Calls President Trump's Press Conference "Un-American"

NBC News anchor Chuck Todd was not happy with President Donald Trump's fiery press conference on Thursday. After speaking to various media outlets for over an hour, President Trump answered varying questions which included anything from the 2016 election to recent actions by the Russian military.

He answered each question to the best of his ability and gave each reporter ample time to ask any questions they had.

Because of his actions, NBC's Todd deemed him un-American.

It is now apparent that people in the mainstream media believe the First Amendment is something that remains exclusively to them alone and no one else.
Their purposes is no longer only to reverse the New Deal -- it's also to reverse the relative positions of shit and Shinola.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017


Today at National Review it was Ben Shapiro's turn (perhaps he lost a bet) to bitch about the removal of Confederate icons from campuses and town squares (in this case, Yale's removal of the name of John C. Calhoun from a college), and simultaneous explain why it wasn't because he was racist but because blah blah blah. We've seen some sad entries in this line, particularly after the Dylann Roof massacre -- see here for David French's insistence that the flags and statues must stay because in addition to slavery and treason they commemorate "Confederate valor." But Shapiro doesn't have the balls to be that bald-faced, and takes up an educational angle, which makes him sound like a 60s nudie movie producer telling prosecutors he was just trying to be Frank About Sex:
Calhoun’s name on buildings reminds us that Calhoun was once honored for his perspective rather than derided for it. It is a reminder that evil once held sway in our world, and that we cherished it. It also reminds us that brilliance and patriotism and good and evil can all exist in the same human being: Calhoun’s slavery advocacy existed alongside his desire to build up a strong, robust American military; he created the Bureau of Indian Affairs at the same time that he stumped for the expansion of slavery into the Western states.
So I guess all those gomers waving the Stars and Bars (or getting it tattooed on their bodies) are just trying to show us how bad slavery was! Or how evil and goodness can co-exist in the same person, e.g. themselves ("But wait a minute! Hot dog, love's a-winning!").

If only we needed to be reminded but, alas, these guys refuse to disappear.


I remember massively enjoying Rev. Al Sharpton's response, at a debate among Democratic Presidential contenders in 2004, to a question about the Federal Reserve. Reverend Al clearly had no idea of what the Federal Reserve even was, let alone what he thought about it, but yet with terror in his eyes he fronted madly all the way through. Ah, those young and innocent days! Now we have an actual president with, let us say, an even more limited intellectual palette, but without even the self-awareness to be embarrassed by his own ignorant vamping, as was evident in his bizarre ramblings about his electoral college margin and one- or two- or whatever-state solutions at the Netanyahu press conference.

Good thing for him he's got lickspittles: Here's John Hinderaker at Power Line, who doesn't even bother with his usual subterfuges and actual lets readers see what Trump babbled --
So, I’m looking at two-state and one-state and I like the one that both parties like. I’m very happy with the one that both parties like. I can live with either one. I thought for a while the two-state looked like it may be the easier of the two but honestly, if Bibi and if the Palestinians — if Israel and the Palestinians are happy, I’m happy with the one they like the best.
-- and then adds this commentary:
This is smart, I think. The Palestinians need to understand that if they don’t shape up, they don’t get a state.
That's some deep reading. Takes a lawyerly mind to dig that out of Trump's gibberish, or one's own asshole. Hinderaker is like Rip Torn representing Albert Brooks in Defending Your Life ("Dignified, I call it!"), except of course neither kind nor charismatic. But maybe he was just being sloppy there; later on, he wisely refrains from reproducing Trump's doozy of a response to a question about anti-Semitism in America, taken here from the transcript --
Well, I just want to say that we are, you know, very honored by the victory that we had -- 306 electoral college votes. We were not supposed to crack 220. You know that, right? There was no way to 221, but then they said there's no way to 270. And there's tremendous enthusiasm out there. 
I will say that we are going to have peace in this country. We are going to stop crime in this country. We are going to do everything within our power to stop long simmering racism and every other thing that's going on. There's a lot of bad things that have been taking place over a long period of time. 
I think one of the reasons I won the election is we have a very, very divided nation, very divided. And hopefully, I'll be able to do something about that. And I, you know, it was something that was very important to me. 
As far as people, Jewish people, so many friends; a daughter who happens to be here right now; a son-in-law, and three beautiful grandchildren. I think that you're going to see a lot different United States of America over the next three, four or eight years. I think a lot of good things are happening. 
And you're going to see a lot of love. You're going to see a lot of love.
-- which in my view boils down to a combination of "Cabbages knickers it's not got a beak!" and "Vote Quimby!" but which Hinderaker interprets thus:
A journalist effectively accused Trump of being responsible for a rise in anti-Semitic incidents... Trump responded vaguely and with great restraint.
Vaguely and with great restraint! Hey, wait a minute, Torn mentions "restraint" in that scene. Could it be... nah, I doubt Hinderaker ever watches anything except Red Dawn and tapes made at Gitmo sent to him by Andrew C. McCarthy.

If, as I expect, one day at a public function Trump just starts blowing drool bubbles like an infant, Hinderaker will tell his people it was a "subtle meditation."

Tuesday, February 14, 2017


You know, I find these mangoes (as we have been calling the wackier wingnut expostulations since earliest alicublog days) in a variety of places. Sometimes I'm tipped off on Twitter. I rarely give credit for that because I consider these links raw material, and flatter myself (he said, eyes demurely lowered, palm pressed piously to chest) that I add enough cream to the jest to make them my own.

But I found the following thing via @BGreuskin, which I freely admit because I can't possibly improve on the source material from Breitbart, in which future U.S. Ambassador to South Africa Joel B. Pollak speculates on what led to the fall of former NatSec Advisor Michael Flynn:
The remaining possibilities are more worrying. The third explanation is that President Obama deliberately, and cleverly, used the bogus sanctions as a “blue dye” test to expose which strings Russia might try to pull to relieve them. Flynn, with a prior relationship with the Russian government, may have been a natural, innocuous point of contact — or perhaps something more.
That Obama -- like The Left, he's got his fingers in everything!

Though the best, that's not all: Pollak naturally disdains the "Democratic Party’s sore-loser conspiracy theory" that Trump is mobbed up with Putin and the Russians; instead, he suggests Trump is more sinned against than sinning, Russkie-wise:
The fourth and most worrying explanation is that the government was not merely monitoring the communications of Russian diplomats, but of the Trump transition team itself. The fact that the contents of Flynn’s phone conversation — highly sensitive intelligence — were leaked to the media suggests that someone with access to that information also has a political axe to grind.

Democrats are clamoring for a deeper investigation of Russian ties to Trump. But the more serious question is whether our nation’s intelligence services were involved in what amounts to political espionage against the newly-elected government.

We know that there are hundreds and perhaps thousands of federal bureaucrats already using shadow communications systems. How far does that “shadow government” go?

The FBI, CIA and other agencies ought to reassure Congress, or come clean.
I imagine when the smoke clears Chaffetz's committee will reveal that it was really Hillary Clinton who said "grab 'em by the pussy."

Friday, February 10, 2017


Former colleague Rob Harvilla made a great case for Twenty One Pilots;
They make a great case for themselves here.

• Here's your new talking point, wingnuts: The San Francisco Court of Appeals! Reliable propagander Jim Geraghty at National Review:
For Trump Foes, San Francisco’s Court of Appeals Is Cloud Nine
The Trump administration’s loss in the Court of Appeals of the Ninth Circuit — it might as well just be called “the San Francisco court” — isn’t surprising, and the tone of the decision isn’t really a surprise, either...
Cuz they's Sanfrancisgy sissy-men! Jeanne Kirkpatrick, greybeards may recall, got a lot of mileage out of "San Francisco Democrats" in 1984. A few things have changed since then -- notably, Russia's the Republicans' buddy, and the number of people you can set off with Cisco as a perjorative has declined drastically -- in fact, that population may overlap substantially with the readership of National Review.

• So much of my humor is of necessity grim these days, so how about a genuine ray of sunshine? St. Louis Treasurer Tishaura O. Jones is running for mayor, and as is customary was offered an interview with the editorial board of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which she declined, sending instead a letter which she shared with the St. Louis American, and oh boy:
Two weeks ago, you used some of your ink to outline what questions you would be asking of mayoral candidates. You complained that “decades of sustained, abject neglect by city leaders have allowed a bombed-out graffiti-covered, war-zone image to prevail.” You said you were afraid to walk your dog at night and you called for a plan to “address blight and abate the graffiti that’s killing our city.”

You just moved here. It isn’t your city, yet. And graffiti is not what’s killing it.

What is killing our city is poverty. Since you’re new and you live in a great neighborhood, you probably don’t know that the poverty rate doubled during Mayor Francis G. Slay’s 16-year tenure.

What is killing our region is a systemic racism that pervades almost every public and private institution, including your newspaper, and makes it nearly impossible for either North St. Louis or the parts of South St. Louis where African Americans live to get better or safer or healthier or better-educated...
The whole thing is good and may just bolster your faith in the future of this country.

Wednesday, February 08, 2017


A heartwarming story from Bre Payton at The Federalist and then -- record scratch!
To Poe, all of the hate is worth protecting her customers from exposure to unnecessary vulgarity. Recently, one of her female customers confided in Poe that she had been sexually assaulted as a child. Poe says these women shouldn’t have to relive their painful experiences in her store by being confronted with vulgarity. These women — her customers — have been through so much, Poe tells me. They don’t deserve to have a man or a woman come in here and ask for a ‘P hat.'”
Puts me in mind of Mrs. Doyle on Father Ted: "And of course, the p-word, father, the bad p-word, worse than 'puddy-tat' -- you know the one I mean!"  Let's go back to the beginning -- what is this Poe (oh, it's lovely she's called Poe) on about?
When Elizabeth Poe saw video footage of the Women’s March in Washington DC the day after President Trump was inaugurated, she was horrified by all of the vulgarity on display. Women carried signs emblazoned with genitals, many repeatedly chanted curse words, and celebrities delivered speeches riddled with explicit content and threats of violence.
By "threats of violence," a link reveals, she means Madonna's speech. Typical Federalist readers won't click it, of course, and will go away assuming the March, at which no arrests were made, was all bonfires and menstrual blood feasts, just like everything those crazy people do in the urban liberal fleshpots where they have communism, libraries, and dental hygienists.
Poe, who has owned a yarn store in Franklin, Tennessee for five years, was frustrated that so many women wore knitted “pussyhats” to the march, ruining what once was a “cute little pattern.” When a woman visited her store the very next day asking for pink yarn to make a hat like the ones she had seen women wearing at the march on TV, she took to Facebook and asked customers who wanted yarn to make a pussyhat to go elsewhere.
And for this simple act of courage, claim Payton and Poe, "she’s been screamed at, called names, and threatened with rape and other violent acts." Police reports or GTFO, I'm tempted to say, but that's just the sort of rudeness we rootless cosmopolitans go in for; if we doubt the word of this sweet yarn store lady, how will we ever win back the trust of other embittered honkies who voted for a TV reality show clown because he was white and vicious? I mean, there are almost as many of them as there are of us!

Anyhow, Payton has a high tolerance for Poe's folk wisdom, as evinced by this:
Some people have tried to throw Poe’s Christian faith back in her face by insisting that Jesus would’ve marched to empower women. That may be true, Poe tells me, but “Jesus would’ve marched with his clothes on.”
Poe also claims that her financial losses in the p hat trade have been more than made up for by "orders and support from Hong Kong, Great Britain, and every state in the United States." I like to imagine Brit expats in Red China's Biggest Little City-State crying through megaphones, "'ere, you lot! There's a woyt lady in th' States wot needs a few bob ta fight lesbians!" This is perhaps my favorite part:
Before opening The Joy of Knitting, she worked at Community Health Systems, which operates 158 hospitals in 22 states, according to its website. Poe says she worked at CHS for “18 of the longest months of my life,” before tensions with another co-worker got too stressful, driving her to seek a job she enjoyed, even if it meant going into business for herself.
I marvel that Payton left "tensions with another co-worker got too stressful" in there for creeps like me to interpret in an unflattering way. Why couldn't she just say Poe was called by the Lord?