Thursday open thread.

Have at it, ye Urban Voting Ninjas.

Standard FYI clause: I generally wait about 2 hours after Ta-Nehisi would typically open a thread (roughly noon, EST, back when such a thing was typical…!), and if none is forthcoming, I put one up here.

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66 Comments

  1. BJonthegrid

     /  November 15, 2012

    Re: BP $4.5 Billion fine – where does the money go and who gets to spend it? My vote: High speed rail. What’s yours?

    Reply
    • cofax

       /  November 15, 2012

      Free public pre-schools in the communities along the Gulf Coast.

      Reply
      • BJonthegrid

         /  November 15, 2012

        My area could use that too…..head-start only goes so far and child care is very expensive the closer you get to DC.

        Reply
    • A good chunk of that money has got to go to cleanup of the gulf shores and to business reimbursements for those hit hard by the eco-damage (fishermen, seaside communities). Putting it to high-speed rail seems a bit of overreach for the money: alternate energy such as solar and geothermal would be smarter and a retort to the oil/energy oligarchs.

      Reply
      • BJonthegrid

         /  November 15, 2012

        This is why I asked. I thought we already got 20 billion dollars in 2009 for cleanup and to help the victims who lost eirjobs/businesses.

        Reply
        • There’s still a ton of cleaning up and rebuilding to do around the spill zone. The billions spent already were what BP was billed at the time for handling the immediate crisis and cleanups (which by all accounts brought their own toxic horrors).

          Reply
          • koolaide

             /  November 15, 2012

            Not to mention the fact that we’re all trying to pretend doesn’t exist — fishing is never, ever going to be the same there. I don’t think I’ll ever be able to eat oysters again. I don’t care that *they* say the oysters are fine. The toxic crap & the oil in the water say different to me.

            Reply
      • Bingo. Clean up the damn mess they made.

        Reply
    • I vote for those free gifts I’m supposed to get from Obama.
      Personally, I’d like a blogging career that pays the bills.

      Reply
  2. Captain Button

     /  November 15, 2012

    Per Johnny Bravo: “This won’t end well.”

    Reply
  3. Captain Button

     /  November 15, 2012

    I finished The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks, and am kind of “eh” about it. It was Culture ships and people playing around with the usual toys and games, but the story… So what? It didn’t seem to matter.

    Reply
    • (You recently rec’ed a book to me. What was it again?)

      Reply
      • Captain Button

         /  November 15, 2012

        Possibly Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. The infant Antichrist is switched at birth with an ordinary English boy and hilarity ensues.

        Reply
    • Tenar Darell

       /  November 15, 2012

      We finally get a new Culture novel, but there’s no epic story? Bummer.

      I think Player of Games, and Excession spoiled me for some of his more ambiguous endings.

      Reply
  4. WAKnight

     /  November 15, 2012

    Blog flog – in which I continue my thoughts on the Republicans, arguing that ditching social conservatism doesn’t help the problem – http://testudomeles.blogspot.com/2012/11/the-state-of-gop-part-ii-economic.html

    Reply
  5. corkingiron

     /  November 15, 2012

    Emily – I’ve been following some of your writing on the attacks and counter-attacks in Gaza. Thanks for your work. Sometimes the best things we do are those things that we do after the despair sets in.

    Reply
    • socioprof

       /  November 15, 2012

      I want to echo this. Thank you so much for this work, Emily.

      Reply
      • Dude, I can’t even.
        Except that at least they waited until Obama won the election.
        Other than that, I have nothing.

        Reply
    • taylor16

       /  November 15, 2012

      Agreed. Honestly, if it wasn’t for Emily on twitter, I would have no idea anything had happened.

      Since, you know, there’s a sex scandal here in the US, so our major news organizations are all busy with that. *eyeroll*

      Reply
    • Thanks everyone. I’m sorry I’m so thoroughly not here, but I’m guessing you guessed why.

      xoxoxox

      Reply
  6. To the wingnuts pushing the “secession” petitions, lemme point out a few flaws:
    1) No President – Democrat OR Republican – is going to preside over a “peaceful” dissolution of the United States;
    2) Even if your side (The GOP) won the state electorally, you most likely do not have a majority population backing your secession efforts, even in Texas: this is because most of us like being Americans, despite the disagreements;
    3) The states you are most likely pushing to secede are also most likely the poorest GDP states in the nation (save Texas), meaning your start-up economy – as individual nation/states or even a new confederacy – will be not as strong as it would need to be;
    4) If you’re Texas, say hello to the Mexican army gathering at the Rio Grande asking you not-so-politely to reconfigure the border back up to the Nueces River;
    5) There are very few if any foreign nations who will grant you recognition;
    6) There is nothing in the Constitution about “secession” “secede” “dissolution” or “dissolve” or anything else suggesting the states could back out of the federal union;
    7) Referring back to point 2) if you do push for secession for your state, expect the best and the brightest to flee said state as quickly as possible: not because most of them are liberal but because most of them don’t want to deal with the headaches – such as killing off the federal-backed social programs your side tends to abhor – you’re doomed to have (when people find out your seceding state won’t have Medicare or Social Security, zoom off they go);
    8) Secession will not resolve the real problems – job growth, increasing insurance and healthcare costs, education – we have as both a nation as well as each state;
    9) Your modern secession movement is basically the “I’ll Leave For Canada/Australia” ranting the sore losers have after a bitterly contested election;
    10) This secession movement is doomed to repeat the errors, disasters, miscues, and stupidity of the LAST secession movement AKA the Civil War.

    Reply
    • koolaide

       /  November 15, 2012

      (to at least defend the south with, um, a backhand, there are now petitions in all 50 states, at least that’s what the internet tells me)

      Reply
      • dave in texas

         /  November 15, 2012

        To give my own state the back of my hand, Texas passed the 25,000 signature threshold in just a few hours, and as of yesterday had more than 80,000 signatures.

        The redneckery, it is thick on the ground here.

        Reply
        • koolaide

           /  November 15, 2012

          I’m just a bit twitchy. There are significant sections of the left & middle that think this sort of crap is only a southern thing. kinda like they think only the south has racist discrimination*. When really, there are assholes everywhere.

          *or say when people in CA heaped scorn upon NC for not defeating the anti-same sex marriage amendment.

          Reply
      • …see 2) where I note that the secessionists even in Red states are not in the majority in those states: this will be even more apt in the Blue states. They may get a 25,000 signature threshold on the 50 petitions, but out of state populations that are well over 568,000 people (Wyoming, as the smallest state) those petitions are meaningless. The secessionists would have something to cheer for if any of those petitions get over the 250,000 mark (more than half of Wyoming’s populus). And Texas’ is at, what, 80,000 right now?

        Also, it’s a bit ironic that we’ve got these secessionists pushing for disunion just as Puerto Rico is voting to be let IN…

        Reply
        • lasslisa

           /  November 15, 2012

          oooh, a trade!

          Reply
        • efgoldman

           /  November 15, 2012

          ….but out of state populations that are well over 568,000 people (Wyoming, as the smallest state)
          ‘scuse me? Me and all my munchkin friends in RI (alternate slogans: “The Smallest State with the Biggest Name” or, shorter “The Munchkin State”) beg to differ. Smallest population, I’ll buy.

          Reply
          • I meant as smallest state population, apologies.

            A girl from high school was sitting next to me on a flight back from a summer conference program. She was a transplant to Florida from the hallowed hills of Rhode Island, and she was complaining about the airline’s in-flight magazine not showing any stops for Providence. “It’s a major city,” she says.
            “Yeah,” I reply. “So’s Rhode Island.”
            She wouldn’t stop punching me until we got to Tampa International.

            Reply
  7. Hey I came back.
    There’s stuff today, including some serious horde bait, a reminder that Doctor Who’s Children in Need short is tomorrow and an XFactor recap.
    http://anibundel.wordpress.com

    Reply
  8. caoil

     /  November 15, 2012

    Work pet peeve: printing copies of email strings and their attachments that have been forwarded multiple times. Can we not just print each subsequent forward email, and skip doing the attachments over and over and over? What. A. Pain.

    Reply
    • Captain Button

       /  November 15, 2012

      I’m wondering if this was how they got the “20,000-30,000 pages of emails” in the Love Pentagon scandal.

      Reply
      • cofax

         /  November 15, 2012

        Yes, it is. There were only a couple of hundred emails, but IME conservation of bandwidth is not a military virtue. Email forwards go on and on and on…

        Reply
      • caoil

         /  November 15, 2012

        It makes me want to scream “have fun reading it all multiple times!”

        Reply
    • scone

       /  November 15, 2012

      Oh my god, I LOATHE this. We have a secretary who insists upon multiple copies of EVERYTHING, and claims it is a CYA maneuver (why this particular act would C anyone’s A, I’m not really sure), meaning I’ll get a file that is 30 pages, 25 of which are every email in the chain OR, six copies of draft contracts or something. Makes. Me. Crazy. I occasionally go on a purge, ripping pages out with no abandon, and it is extremely satisfying.

      Reply
      • JHarper2

         /  November 15, 2012

        I worked in an office where a report had to be faxed to a customer (early 00s). Two copies were printed, one for the fax machine, and one for the customer file. Both ended up in the customer file, one stamped copy and one stamped faxed. The whole thing could have been faxed from the e file without a hard copy at all.
        I can’t even….

        Reply
        • Captain Button

           /  November 15, 2012

          But did you keep the cover sheets for the TPS reports current?

          Reply
        • scone

           /  November 15, 2012

          Sometimes, our mail is delivered downstairs, and they’ll scan it and email it up to us. Later in the day, the hard copy is delivered. Both the hard copy, the scanned copy, AND the email sending the scanned copy go in the file. WHY?

          Reply
      • wearyvoter

         /  November 15, 2012

        The printouts will cover her A….with paper.

        Reply
  9. ….so: Romney 2016?

    Reply
    • Captain Button

       /  November 15, 2012

      We can only hope.

      Reply
    • (insert screaming noises here… from the Republican Party)
      Considering the hell they went through with him as the “most-qualified” candidate for 2012, even WITH the growing evidence of how mismanaged his campaign was, there is no way he’ll get through a primary bout vs. the likes of Christie (current favorite), Huckabee (who bested him for Second Place in 2008), or some other candidate appealing to the wingnut faction by 2016. Romney’s used up his mojo, whatever he had, running for this cycle. Doubt they will let him back.

      Reply
      • As I’ve stated elsewhere, Huckabee won’t be back. Pardoning a prisoner who the goes on to shoot multiple police officers would doom him quickly.

        Reply
        • If there’s a big Draft Huckabee movement, and if he comes out beforehand with an apologetic statement and harsher stance on prison pardons, then maybe…

          Reply
        • koolaide

           /  November 15, 2012

          Oh, see I thought you were going to say he wasn’t coming back to running b/c he was making too much money on the talk circuit. Clearly I’m too cynical. Or something

          Reply
      • efgoldman

         /  November 15, 2012

        …. Christie (current favorite)….
        Don’t think so. Whichever TeaHadi decides to jump in, will play the clips of Christie with Obama, and praising him, over and over and over….
        Christie might do decently in the general, but remember who votes in GOBP primaries: the wingnuttiest of the wingnutty.

        Reply
        • The TeaHadists may be angry, but if the GOP can finally get around to doing some smart GOTV for their moderate registered voters they COULD outnumber the wingnuts. …Maybe…

          Reply
  10. caoil

     /  November 15, 2012

    Skipping my lunch today so that I can dash out in a couple of hours to an employment agency to have some screening/testing done. Whether it leads to a viable new job or not is another story. I have to do something vaguely job search-ish though, even if it’s just to keep myself from going squirrely!

    Reply
  11. koolaide

     /  November 15, 2012

    We had our staff TDay celebration today. I think we’re all asleep at our desks now. I ate a lot. Maybe even an alot.

    Reply
  12. koolaide

     /  November 15, 2012

    Also. I still want there to be a way for Klinsmann to no longer be the US men’s nat’l team coach but the USSF not be on the hook for his $2.5mil salary.

    Reply
  13. caoil

     /  November 15, 2012

    Ohhhhh, this is making me laugh today. I just wish there were more posts/pages. http://windows95tips.tumblr.com/

    Reply
    • efgoldman

       /  November 15, 2012

      Very, very funny. S/he probably wanted to do some about XP as well, but the system wouldn’t let hiauuuuuuuuuughhhhhhhhhhhh

      Reply

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