Late Night Snark: June Grab Bag Edition
“Until we lose the filibuster, the entire progressive agenda is at risk. From voting rights to immigration reform to gun control to climate policy. Democrats: you won! Stop letting the losers call the shots. As my dance teacher used to say: Wow me or get the fuck out, kid.”
“Donald Trump made an interesting move—he quit his own blog. According to one of his advisers, the reason he shut it down is people in the media have been mocking how few people were visiting his site. So from now on he’s just going to write bitchy little notes on the dry-erase board at the Mar-A-Lago omelet station.”
Half the USA is vaccinated. The other half thought 2020 was just too much fun.
“Vice President Kamala Harris said that broadband internet is ‘critical to infrastructure.’ And then Spectrum added a 30-cent ‘Critical to Infrastructure’ fee.”
“Police being told to intervene if another officer is doing something wrong is equivalent to restaurants putting up Employees Must Wash Hands signs in the bathrooms. Great rule, but shouldn’t have to be said.”
“Start-up airline Boom Supersonic is hoping to eventually fly passengers anywhere in the world in under four hours for just a hundred dollars. So get ready to fly fast and cheap on the only airline named after the sound of an explosion.”
—Colin Jost, SNL
And now, our feature presentation…
Cheers and Jeers for Friday, June 4, 2021
Note: Our sincerest apologies for not warning the Daily Kos community in advance that we were changing from jeans to shorts yesterday morning. Those of you who suffered retina burn as a result of viewing our blindingly-white bird legs without proper protection can submit a claim to C&J’s legal department. —Mgt.
By the Numbers:
Days ’til the summer solstice: 16
Current forecast among leading economists of overall U.S. economic growth in 2021: 7%+
Major countries in which expectations for 2025 GDP among Wall Street forecasters are currently higher than they were in January 2020: 1 (the U.S.)
Acreage of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, in which President Biden just suspended oil and gas leases: 19.6 million
Number of continents from which migrating birds come to ANWR for at least part of the year: 6
Church membership among American adults in 1947 and 2020, according to Gallup polling: 76%, 47%
The last year when fewer parents named their babies Donald than they did in 2020: 1900
Puppy Pic of the Day: Weekend plans (Gonna be in the 90s here.)
CHEERS and JEERS to news from the workin’ stiff desk. A mixed bag on the May employment front today. Good news: 559,000 new jobs were created. Bad news: that was a bit under expectations. Good news: the reports for March and April were adjusted upward by 27,000 jobs. Bad news: media freakout! Good news: unemployment rate fell to 5.8%, the first time it’s been under six percent since the pandemic lockdown started. So what to make of it all? Over to you, Paul Krugman on Twitter:
Mainly, I think, they tell us that we don’t know much about how fast an economy can recover from a pandemic-induced slump.
There were good reasons to expect a V-shaped recovery—and that is what we’re seeing. But I don’t know what model(either in the sense of a set of equations or an applicable historical example)would tell us whether 0.5 m, 1 m, or 1.5 m makes sense as a pandemic lifts. Lots of extrapolation from noisy data; not a good idea.
So basically calm down . Still looking like a fast recovery.
He’s so sexy when he’s analytical.
CHEERS to The Preeecious. Forty-four years ago, on June 4, 1977, the first personal computer—Apple II—went on sale. I’m guessing that, in today’s dollars, it would probably cost around $8,000. Their original print ad seems Model T’ish today. (Especially the part where they boast that “thousands” of people have discovered it, including “hobbyists.”) And check out this TV ad:
Today our computers are so advanced that ignorant conservatives can receive Republican and Russian propaganda on their touch screens from websites that scramble their brains and convince them to actively work to knock the legs out from under our democratic system of government. But that’s nothing compared to the bar graphs you can make to get your ideas noticed in the workplace. (Ha ha—take that, Gary in accounting with your silly protractor.)
CHEERS to blowing this popsicle stand. Whenever the shit gets too deep here on the bluish-brown marble, I call NASA to see if Newt Gingrich has fulfilled his promise to colonize the moon yet. Sorry to say the answer is no, so we’ll just have to spend our days and nights gazing yonward and dreaming. Here’s a peek at this June’s highlights, including a partial solar eclipse and a visit from Scorpius, courtesy of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (and if you’re a fan of the “Wilhelm Scream,” you’ll love this):
Also: on the 17th you might get a clear glimpse of a Romulan vessel in the split second between the time it de-cloaks to vaporize your neighbor’s tool shed and then re-cloak. Have that smart-cam ready and prepare to go viral.
BRIEF SANITY BREAK
END BRIEF SANITY BREAK
CHEERS to fighters for truth, justice and the American way. One of America’s great journalists and commentators in the Edward R. Murrow tradition (and also LBJ’s press secretary for a time), Bill Moyers, turns a year more seasoned tomorrow (39 again, I think). Besides having an impeccable first name, he also has a sterling reputation as a straight shooter—a passionate advocate for truth and the fundamentals of democracy. This snip from a column he wrote a few years back on what it means to be a progressive is still terrific:
The progressive agenda isn’t “left wing.” (Can anyone using the term even define what “left wing” means anymore?)
The progressive agenda is America’s story—from ending slavery to ending segregation to establishing a woman’s right to vote to Social Security, the right to organize, and the fight for fair pay and against income inequality. Strip those from our history and you might as well contract America out to the US Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers, and Karl Rove, Inc.
At their core, the New Deal, Fair Deal, and Great Society programs were aimed at assuring every child of a decent education, every worker a decent wage, and every senior a decent retirement; if that’s extreme, so are the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble to the Constitution.
But such is the level of what passes for discourse inside the Beltway these days.
Well, in fairness, just the days ending in y.
CHEERS to home vegetation. A quick spin around the TV schedule for the weekend, starting with Chris Hayes and Rachel Maddow, who will try to out-primal-scream each other on MSNBC. Or you can catch Robert Reich on PBS’s Firing Line at 8:30. Bill Maher’s Real Time guests at 10 (HBO) are Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY), Chris—Ugh—Matthews, and John—Double Ugh—Kasich.
The most popular movies and home videos, new and old, are all reviewed here at Rotten Tomatoes. Sports schedules: MLB here, the NHL here, WNBA here, and the NBA here. Also this weekend, on NBC: the final rounds of the 2021 Women’s Open golf tourney, the 153rd Belmont Stakes (Saturday), and the U.S. Gymnastics Championships (Sunday evening).
On 60 Minutes: the WHO inquiry into the origin of the COVID virus, and a look at the whys and wherefores of ransomware. Sunday night at 8ET, CBS airs the Kennedy Center Honors, including honorees Debbie Allen, Joan Baez, Garth Brooks, Dick Van Dyke, and violinist Midori. And John Oliver wraps up the weekend at 11 with a new edition of HBO’s Last Week Tonight.
Now here’s your Sunday morning lineup:
Meet the Press: Sens. Mark Warner (D-VA) and Roy Blunt (CULT-MO).
CNN’s State of the Union: Sen. Angus King (I-ME); Gov. Tate H’yuck H’yuck (CULT-MS).
This Week: Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo; Facebook’s VP of Global Affairs Nick Clegg.
Face the Nation: Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg on the state of the infrastructure bill; Condoleezza Rice on the state of Bin Laden’s determination to strike inside the U.S.; Bank of America’s chief nickel-and-dimer Brian Moynihan; Sen. Joe Manchin (???-WV).
Fox GOP Talking Points Sunday: Sen. Joe Manchin (???-WV); Trump super PAC humper Corey Lewandowski.
Ten years ago in C&J: June 4, 2011
CHEERS to Maine’s tea party governor. It took five months, but Paul LePage finally did something worthy of a li’l teeny hooray: he signed a bill making it illegal to text while driving. Of course, there are loopholes. It’s still perfectly legal to text while chipping and putting.
And just one more…
CHEERS to D-Day. The largest amphibious landing in history, during which American Antifa forces invaded Europe to restore representative democracy, happened 77 years ago this Sunday. Seven years ago, President Obama flew over to France and delivered a moving tribute to the rapidly-dwindling number of veterans who waded ashore on that horrific yet awe-inspiring day:
Lengthy applause rang out as the U.S. President said he was humbled by the presence of some of those veterans at the ceremony.
“Here, we don’t just commemorate victory, as proud of that victory as we are; we don’t just honor sacrifice, as grateful as the world is; we come to remember why America and our allies gave so much for the survival of liberty at this moment of maximum peril,” Obama said. Their story should remain “seared into the memory of a future world,” he said, describing Omaha as “democracy’s beachhead.”
He said, “It was here, on these shores, that the tide was turned in that common struggle for freedom. What more powerful manifestation of America’s commitment to human freedom than the sight of wave after wave of young men boarding those boats to liberate people they’d never met?”
The Atlantic has an interactive feature that shows you various scenes from D-Day and, with a click of your mouse or a touch of your finger, what they look like now. It’s pretty mind-blowing. True fact: to this day, Dick Cheney is still a little confused as to why we went through all the trouble—after all, the intelligence was accurate, the threat was real, and there wasn’t any oil there. Crazy.
Have a great weekend. Floor’s open…What are you cheering and jeering about today?