Labor Day Open Thread, if you want one

Check out the barrel on that revolver.

Check out the barrel on that revolver.

I’m not detecting a burning interest in blogging today among the usual suspects (Google Analytics confirms this hunch), but since I’ve got to go to the dentist in the morning to get a crown, and will be really busy after that, I’m giving you something to occupy you once you do get interested:

  1. TV’s Wyatt Earp, Hugh O’Brian, dies at 91 — This won’t matter to any of you youngsters, but to me this is huge. His Wyatt was second only to TV’s Wild Bill Hickok in my estimation when I was a preschooler. I wanted my own toy version of his long-barreled revolver so much I can’t remember whether I ever actually got it, if that makes sense — it’s almost tangible in my memory. Also, Phyllis Schafly died today at 92. That’s pretty far afield, so if there’s a Rule of Three going, the third could be anybody.
  2. Philippine president calls Obama ‘son of a whore’ — I’m beginning to understand why they call this guy the Trump of the East.
  3. ‘Honorary’ job at for-profit college paid Bill Clinton millions — For what it’s worth, The Washington Post is playing this bigger than “Trump dismisses questions about improper gift to Florida attorney general.”
  4. Without conservative majority in Supreme Court, voter-law challengers score big wins — So, um, GOP Senators — remind me again why you won’t hold hearings on a nominee? It doesn’t seem to be doing you much good.
  5. Apple’s New iPhones Arrive as Glow Fades — That Tim Cook just can’t get a break, can he? They pan his new releases before anything is even known about them. Sorry, dude, you’re no Steve Jobs. Meanwhile, The Guardian warns that Apple better not leave off the headphone jack. I agree. That would stink…
There'd better be a place to plug these in...

There’d better be a place to plug these in…

44 thoughts on “Labor Day Open Thread, if you want one

  1. Bryan Caskey

    I was in Nashville over the long weekend. Among my many stops was a trip to The Hermitage, where I got to see Andrew Jackson’s presidential house. Jackson had many faults, but one thing is for sure…he really loved his wife.

    He was certainly a larger than life personality. The tagline for the museum on the grounds is “Born for a Storm”.

    Reply
  2. Claus

    I believe I may have mentioned #3 once or twice a few weeks ago, but it was swept under the rug. I guess it takes The Washington Post to get your attention on the matter.

    Reply
  3. Claus

    Are there people out there with iPhone 6’s wishing it were thinner? I bought a protective case for mine just because it was so thin.

    Reply
  4. bud

    If the polls continue to show Trump with a big lead in SC I may have to consider some type of statement vote, maybe not vote at all. I’m toying with the idea of voting for Trump. The best outcome this election is a Trump popular vote win and a Hillary electoral win. That would likely bring an end to the odious electoral college.

    Reply
  5. Bart

    Trump is up by 2 points in the latest CNN poll and that is not a poll from a Trump friendly source. It seems that since he has toned his rhetoric down by one or two notches on the volume control and is actually addressing issues without his usual jackass approach, he is gaining some traction. He is leading by a wide margin with independents and gaining in other demographics.

    While waiting at the dentist’s office this morning, two black ministers were on a show discussing Trump and Clinton. Suprising enough, the Trump supporter actually made more sense than the Clinton supporter. All the Clinton supporter could talk about was how Hillary was going to give them more “stuff” and the Trump supporter talked about how the black voters had been used by Democrats and all of the broken promises.

    I still strongly object to Donald Trump even being the Republican candidate and recoil in disgust and horror at the prospect of Trump sitting in the Oval Office as POTUS. But, if the trend continues and if he can stay on message well enough, the odds of him winning increase each day.

    When the Clinton campaign and other reporters go after an NBC reporter because he reported the coughing episode she had on the campaign plane, something is wrong and an indication there may be a breach in the press wagons surrounding Hillary. Maybe the Trump campaign tactic going after her alleged health issues is having an impact.

    Wonder if our friends in Europe are laughing their butts off at us right now after watching the two least qualified and most disliked caqndidates in decades vie for the presidency. It is a safe bet they are.

    Reply
    1. Mprince

      You’d lose that bet. Having spent a great deal of time actually living in Europe, the folks I know there consider Clinton as on par with their own political leaders. What worries them is Trump and his loony following. They constantly seek reassurance that Americans won’t be irresponsible and reckless enough to actually elect him.

      Reply
      1. Bart

        “……consider Clinton as on par with their own political leaders.” Considering some of the decisions made by European leaders, placing Clinton on par with their leaders is not a resounding endorsement.

        Reply
            1. Bart

              Maybe the caption to go with the photo is – “The UK and France are going to build what? A concrete wall to help control the immigrant problem? No, not the UK and France, no way, no how! Damn, they preach to us and point fingers at anyone in the US suggesting building a wall and now they are going to build one for the same purpose? Sounds like they are more in agreement with Trump than Clinton. But, they are “wholly competent” just as Hillary is so who are we to question their decision?

              Reply
              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                Bart, there are loads of nativists in Europe. (Asia, too, of course.) It’s a well-documented problem. We definitely don’t have the market cornered on that.

                The thing is, it’s considered a core American value that we’re supposed to be better than that. That hasn’t always been the case (see Know-Nothings), but it looms large in our legend.

                Right now, of course, we have a much-lamented resurgence of xenophobia throughout the West — expressed by Trump in this country, and by people like Marine le Pen and Nigel Farage in Europe (that is, if you count Britain as Europe)…

                Reply
  6. bud

    I agree with Paul Krugman, Hillary Clinton has been “Gored”. Al Gore NEVER said he invented the internet. Yet somehow that nonsensical charge was blasted out for months. As for Mrs. Clinton she has been assaulted in the media for stuff that is essentially utter nonsense. Take this coughing thing. Really? She was caught coughing. Seriously? That’s some kind of news? After months and months of non-stop chatter about Benghazi, a faux scandal if there ever was one, the right wing conspiracy yakers have moved on to email and a charitable foundation. Not much to the email and nothing at all to the foundation. So now we have coughing.

    In the meantime if Donald Trump can read a 20 minute speech off a teleprompter he’s viewed as presidential. He stands 8 feet away from a foreign leader without crapping his pants and he’s viewed as a man ready for the job, even though he flat lied in his remarks. His whole life has been about scamming people and cheating banks and the taxpayers. This man is a fraud. If Hillary Clinton was covered with even a modicum of honesty it would be clear that she is highly qualified in all respects and deserving of the presidency. But the press likes a horse race, not matter what the consequences for the country. So the execrable Donald Trump is seen as a skilled and highly respected businessman well versed in all the necessary qualities and temperament to assume the mantel of POTUS. Hillary? She’s a coughing, lying fraud who gives away state secrets to our enemies and provides favorable treatment to foreign governments in exchange for a few bucks. And lets not forget she murdered Vince Foster. Give me a break.

    Reply
    1. Bryan Caskey

      “Al Gore NEVER said he invented the internet.” -bud

      “During my service in the United States Congress, I took the initiative in creating the Internet.” -Al Gore

      It’s kind of ironic that I used the internet to find this quote, no?

      Reply
      1. Doug Ross

        I didn’t think Democrats thought anyone invented anything. It’s all a collective effort… from the guy who comes up to the idea and works on it for years to the guy who empties the wastebasket or the guy who collects the taxes on the revenue the inventor generates. We ALL invented EVERYTHING!
        (Where’s my participation trophy??)

        Reply
        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          Nobody except Al Gore invented anything.

          You’re thinking of Ayn Rand’s Anthem, about the throwback, post-apocalyptic society in which everyone honors the committee that collectively invented the candle, which is the height of technology…

          Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            No, I’m thinking of Rand’s The Fountainhead where the collective group-thinkers try to suppress a brilliant architect from designing the buildings he and his clients want because their brilliance makes them feel inferior.

            Reply
              1. Doug Ross

                What a failure, huh? Imagine an author who writes a couple books that each selling millions of copies. So lucky!

                You read one of her least popular books and that apparently makes you an expert.

                Reply
  7. Doug Ross

    If Hillary has a coughing fit during the first debate and has to step away from the podium, does she still win the election? How damaging would that be? Perception is reality.

    I don’t know if she has some illness but if I had a persistent cough like hers for months, I’m not sure I’d accept the “allergies” diagnosis from my doctor. Politics aside, does she give the appearance of someone who will be capable of holding up for the next four years? Or will her first term be like Reagan’s second – a scripted, strictly controlled public relations exercise?

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Allergies have caused me to have coughing spells for 62 years.

      Sometimes that’s because of what most people think of as “allergies” — post-nasal drip constantly irritating the throat. With me, though, it’s as often as not the related condition of asthma.

      Or at least, it is when the asthma isn’t under control. Fortunately, at the moment, it is.

      Of course, if Hillary took the four drugs I take every day to keep symptoms away, I suppose everyone would get on her case for THAT.

      Reply
      1. Brad Warthen Post author

        By the way… I’ve noted before that asthma would have kept me out of the Army if I’d ever been called for a physical.

        I asked the commanding general at Fort Jackson about the Army’s standard several years ago, and he said it was this: If you have to take a drug every day to stay healthy, they don’t want you.

        If that’s accurate (and I suspect he was oversimplifying), that counts out a LOT of people. Since in my experience, the drug industry’s business model today is about getting you on a drug and keeping you on it in perpetuity.

        When I was a kid, there were drugs I took when I had symptoms. Now, all the drugs are things you take all the time so you won’t get symptoms…

        Reply
      2. Doug Ross

        So you believe she is suffering from allergies? If she can’t get them under control, how will that limit her on the world stage? Pre-recorded speeches and photo-ops only?

        Reply
        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          If you’ll recall, throughout his presidency Bill would have these spells, on account of his allergies, when he couldn’t talk for days.

          I can identify. I’ve largely lost my voice — can’t really sing anymore, and sometimes have trouble being understood because of hoarseness — BECAUSE of one of the drugs I take for asthma. Steroid sprays mess with your vocal cords.

          My son’s father-in-law — Hunter Herring, the DJ — suffered with his asthma for years because the thing that would fix it, the steroid spray, messed with his voice. And being a DJ, he couldn’t afford that. Now that he’s retired, he’s finally on the spray and has his asthma under control. He told me he hadn’t realized it was possible to breathe that easily.

          I can identify with that, too. In P.E. in school, distance running was SO hard that I couldn’t believe people other people did it so easily. I suspected it was harder for me than for others. I was right. Aerobic exercise became amazingly easy for me once I was on good, modern drugs…

          Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            Yes, it apparently is enough of a problem that you had to give up certain activities. Are we okay with having a President who can’t speak?

            “If you’ll recall, throughout his presidency Bill would have these spells, on account of his allergies, when he couldn’t talk for days.”

            Yeah, “Allergies”. Probably the kind that needed penicillin to treat.

            Reply
            1. Doug Ross

              In a Google search for Bill Clinton’s health conditions, I came across this.

              “The letters show, for example, that Clinton, who is 46, took treadmill stress tests annually from 1984 through 1986 and once more several weeks before announcing his presidential bid last year. The tests indicated no heart problems, according to his cardiologist, Dr. Andrew G. Kumpuris of Little Rock. ”

              Clinton had a quadruple bypass in 2005. He was a relatively young man when he took office. The stress of the job is something I question whether a 70 year old is ready for.

              Reply
                1. bud

                  A machine who will make a fine president. :)

                  Look I know I have no chance of convincing people that most of Hillary’s bad approval numbers are really just a matter of constant negative “advertising” by the conservative machine. But allow if you will the possibility than anyone will be perceived in a much more negative light when a constant drumbeat of vitriol is thrown at them. Heck I suspect a good promotional campaign could even make Bryan come across as Attila the Hun. As proof I offer the current president’s approval ratings. Much of the attention is on Trump and Hillary over the last few months which has allowed Obama some relief from the mayhem. And consequently his approval ratings have improved. Nothing much has changed. It’s all about marketing. Just look at Coke. That’s really a terrible beverage. But people drink the damn stuff. It’s not about the economy any more but to paraphrase, it’s the marketing stupid.

                2. Bryan Caskey

                  “Heck I suspect a good promotional campaign could even make Bryan come across as Attila the Hun.”

                  Would I have to pay for something like that? It might help my litigation practice. :)

            2. Kathryn Fenner

              You mean you only want Presidents who never get colds? I get allergy attacks. They last maybe a week or two. I can usually croak out words, and we have plenty of evidence that Hillary can, as well. I have on occasion gotten a cold that literally took away my voice, as in no sound coming out. How are you going to weed out cold-sufferers?
              Oh, yeah, Donald Trump is in super-duper absolute perfect health, as his “doctor’ so curiously tells us.

              Reply
              1. Doug Ross

                I want a President who has the stamina to be in the job. She would be the least healthy President since Reagan’s second term. She demonstrates zero energy. Gary Johnson actually climbed Mt. Everest in 2003. Hillary hasn’t even driven a freaking car since then! She admitted in 2014 she hadn’t driven since 1996!

                Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *