Your Virtual Front Page for Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Sorry that none of these things is very light. But I won’t dwell on them for long:

  1. Trump Details Plans to Deport Millions of Immigrants — And so it begins. Remember how we used to talk, hypothetically, about how we’d have to become a police state to round up millions of people? Well, no more hypotheticals. This is what we’ve become. My question: Will Trump have to go through Congress for the funding to buy all those new jackboots? But then there’s this version of the story:
  2. Trump administration seeks to prevent ‘panic’ as it outlines broader deportation policies — Spicer says the goal is not “mass deportations.” OK, then — why does the memo call for hiring thousands of additional enforcement agents?
  3. Breitbart writer resigns amid outrage over his pedophilia comments — I had never heard of this guy before today. You? Whoever he is, he doesn’t look like the same person in any two photos. He’s like Clapton in the 70s. Of course, if I said pervy stuff like what he said, I’d try to disguise myself, too.
  4. Trump Denounces Anti-Semitism After Mounting Criticism — I’m of two minds on this. For one thing, I’ve long decried this weird national expectation — which I think got traction during the Clinton administration — that the POTUS have a comment on everything, everywhere, whether it directly bears upon his job or not. On the other hand, when POTUS comments on stuff that didn’t happen in Bowling Green, Atlanta and Sweden, it is kind of nice to have him address something real.
  5. Columbia could lose millions of dollars if SC lawmakers OK business license bills — That poses a genuine problem for Columbia, which starts out in the hole because so much of property in the city is untaxable. But somehow, I don’t expect a lot of business people to lose sleep over it.
  6. Wal-Mart, Home Depot Show Big Box Stores Aren’t Dead — Well, good for them, but if I were Home Depot, I’d worry. For my part, needing a new chainsaw — just for light-to-medium use in the yard — I went to Lowe’s over the weekend and looked at them and hefted them and compared features and prices. But I’m almost certainly going to buy from Amazon. I don’t feel good about it, but there it is.
I'm leaning toward this one -- the WORX 18-Inch 15.0 Amp Electric model with Auto-Tension, Chain Brake, and Automatic Oiling.

I’m leaning toward this one — the WORX 18-Inch 15.0 Amp Electric model with Auto-Tension, Chain Brake, and Automatic Oiling.

39 thoughts on “Your Virtual Front Page for Tuesday, February 21, 2017

  1. Brad Warthen Post author

    Sorry there’s not more local on that VFP, and so much Trump.

    But I go with the stuff that I think folks will be interested in talking about. And when it comes to news people talk about, John Oliver has a point. Until Trump starts acting like a normal president (or at least like a normal person), he will continue to dominate conversation.

    Here’s one that came in while I was finishing this page up — “Big pay bump for SC Gov. McMaster’s chief of staff.” I don’t get worked up about it — knowing Trey, he’ll work hard and do a good job. But I suppose it’s worth taking note of…

    Reply
    1. Richard

      Do you think people want to talk about Trump 24/7? The only time I discuss him now is on your blog… I can go through the whole day without talking him or any other politicians.

      Reply
      1. Bart

        BUD RETIRES is pretty big! Congratulations bud. Hope you are able to do the things you planned for during your work years and life treats you well. Spock: “Live long and prosper bud”.

        Reply
  2. Richard

    Trump Details Plans to Deport Millions of ILLEGAL Immigrants

    Fixed it for you. I don’t get what people don’t understand about illegal aliens in this country. Would you allow someone to just walk in and live in your house? In a nutshell it’s exactly what these people are doing while others are entering the country legally and through the proper channels. If you don’t want to follow the rules, you go to the end of the line, but have to make a stop at your home country first.

    Reply
  3. JesseS

    Yeah, the pic chosen for Milo is essentially based on whatever Milo the outlet wants to present. the guy must spend 90% of his day working on head shots. Fox shows him as a young, foppish punk who just came home from a 90s era NIN concert. NYT/NPR goes with the menacing, 50-year-old Eurotrash who imagines himself a power broker in his selfies.

    In reality he is an intellectually empty, 33-year-old, flamboyantly gay brit who gets off on pressing people’s buttons. He was kicked off of Twitter for inciting his followers to harass. His career got its first shot in the arm by jumping head first into gamergate controversy (please don’t ask, those were bad times on the internet). After becoming an “internet famous” troll he lasted about 72 hours in the real world after appearing on Bill Maher’s HBO show.

    He also calls Trump “Daddy”, much to the ire of centrist commentators, says that transgendered persons are mentally ill perverts who want to rape children in bathrooms, automatically assumes most black people can’t spell, and that feminism is a cancer. In other words he has spent the last 4 or 5 years driving left leaning Tumblr kids absolutely bonkers.

    His public persona is that of a hyperactive lapdog who desperately wants your love and attention by saying anything caustic (remind you of anyone?) for a laugh. It makes him weirdly charming after the shock wears off –mostly because you start to feel sorry for a guy who appears to have no visible inner life beyond a sense of personal desperation.

    Not sure how to feel about this latest (and probably last) episode. He has been telling his “Father Michael” priest joke for years on right leaning podcasts. So when the left and right absolutely lost their minds about his “endorsement of pedophilia” I can’t help but roll my eyes a little and assume it’s 90% feigned outrage over a sad, over-tagged attempt at a tasteless priest joke.

    The truth is, he showed up on Maher, everyone realized he wasn’t ready for prime time, and operatives on either the left or right (I’m assuming both ) torpedoed the guy by flooding message boards, twitter, etc with “This guys loves having sex with children” rhetoric minutes after HBO posted the Overtime segment online. The left to kill him for good and the right to keep him out of CPAC. Not that Milo wasn’t overdue for that in the karma dept.

    Yiannopoulos had been preening in front of the media for months (complete with magazine shoots) waiting to finally get on the show for his worldwide debutante ball, while another panelist said they’d never show up on Politically Incorrect again for inviting Milo, The level of narcissistic drama on both ends was just silly. Not that it mattered, after Larry Wilmore showed up with rhetorical baseball bats and clubbed Milo to death on stage while Nance curb stomped the corpse, he was already over and done with.

    Reply
  4. Scout

    I have two more things to share. They don’t really broaden the range here though.

    This one is interesting: http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2017/02/mark-sanford-profile-214791

    Apparently Mark Sanford is no fan of Trump’s and feels he has nothing to lose by saying so. Odd where allies lie these days.

    And then there is this. https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/610

    A bill which would “distribute Federal funds for elementary and secondary education in the form of vouchers for eligible students and to repeal a certain rule relating to nutrition standards in schools.”

    This would repeal ESEA and divert those funds into vouchers. (ESEA became NCLB which became ESSA – the major federal education bill since 1965). ESEA contains Title I (funding for high poverty schools), ESOL, native american schools, support for homeless kids, and more. It has a lot. An eligible student is any kid aged 5-17 – they can take their voucher to a private school or parents can keep the money if they home school. Presumably the money of any kid who has nowhere else to go will stay in the pubic school with them, but the redistribution will be a huge hit on rural Title I schools. Currently this federal money is targeted to where the need is greatest – educating kids in poverty. This bill redistributes funds equally across every kid in the state, even though every kid is not equally hard to educate. Money that now pays for interventionists and additional teachers to reduce teacher/student ratios for poor kids with no private school options near them may now subsidize the private school educations for families that can afford it anyway. No mention of accountability standards. No mention of priority given for poverty kids. No mention of options for remote rural areas or kids with disabilities. Maybe I am wrong but that is how I read this bill. And the rollback of nutritional standards for school lunch, I suspect, is a jab at Michelle Obama.

    Hopefully it will go nowhere.

    Reply
  5. bud

    This Milo guy is exactly the type of guy liberals should allow to speak at colleges. The one stipulation would be that he’d have to spend 1 minute fielding questions for every minute he gets to talk. Free speech does not mean you get a free shot to filibuster unopposed.

    Reply
    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      I don’t know about him, but that’s the way I always prefer it. When people ask me to speak to a group, I ask them if I can just make opening remarks and spend most of the time on questions.

      I tend to be nervous while delivering a prepared speech, but comfortable once the questions start. I think that’s because I feel better engaging the audience, because they start reacting rather than sitting passively, and I know we’re talking about something that interests them…

      Reply
  6. Claus

    ND pipeline protestors including celebrities Shailene Woodley, Mark Ruffalo, Dave Matthews, and Jane Fonda walked away from the mess they left behind. These are the same people protesting over possible water pollution from the oil pipeline, where do you think the sewage, garbage, gas & oil will end up… in the river and ground water.

    Reply
    1. Bart

      Cannot say I am surprised at the amount of garbage and waste left behind. This seems to be the norm when a protest takes longer than a day or two. When they go into more than a week, the waste is left behind for others to pick up and pay for disposal. Yet, their protests are generally associated with earth friendly causes or environmental issues. The one in ND is a prime example. Oh well, guess there is a price to pay for freedom of speech and expression. Too bad the ones protesting don’t have to foot the bill. Or maybe the bill should be sent to Fonda, Ruffalo, Matthews, and some other celebrities who attended the “gathering”. Let them put their money where their mouth is for once.

      Reply
          1. Doug Ross

            I had a gas Stihl chainsaw I would have given you for free. I never curse. Except when trying to get that #$%#^ thing to start when its 100 degrees out in July. Turned in my man card and bought an electric one.

            Reply
            1. Claus

              Unless you use a gas chainsaw a lot or will be cutting in an area without electricity there’s absolutely no reason to own one.

              Reply
              1. Brad Warthen Post author

                I agree. I have a large (close to an acre, I think), fairly wooded lot and often have to deal with fallen limbs and such. But I can reach any part of it with a couple of long outdoor extension cords strung together. I’m not planning on trekking into the woods to cut anything…

                Reply
            2. Brad Warthen Post author

              I didn’t want the hassle of a gas one. Although I might not have said no to a free one.

              This one had several characteristics I liked, starting with being electric. I wanted one with a chain brake. I also like that it’s self-oiling, and says it’s easy to regulate the chain so it’s neither too loose nor too tight. With my old one, I kept having to break out the socket wrench set to tighten the chain…

              Reply
              1. Doug Ross

                Isn’t it sort of mind boggling that gas operated chainsaws have been around for decades but you still have to:

                flip switch
                set choke
                push the bulb primer in a few times
                pull ripcord
                pull ripcord
                pull ripcord
                oooh its starting – quick push choke lever
                $%#%# it stopped
                start again
                what? I flooded it?

                My car has an engine that runs on gasoline. I turn a key or push a button and it starts.

                Reply
                1. Brad Warthen Post author

                  By the way, my new chainsaw arrived Friday. On Saturday, I finished cutting up that tree in the backyard, and got it all hauled off.

                  So that’s done.

                2. Brad Warthen Post author

                  Well, since you axed me…

                  I find “axe” aesthetically pleasing, in an archaic, almost medieval, sense.

                  But as someone who’s used AP style since I was a kid, and having the journalist’s unconscious inclination to brevity, I use “ax.” Unless I’m feeling old-timey.

                  It’s like — you know how the foremast jacks like dried peas, salt pork and ship’s biscuit on certain days because it’s what they’re used to, and they like what they’re used to?

                  It’s kind of like that…

        1. Brad Warthen Post author

          I probably shouldn’t joke, because my family’s nervous enough about me using a chainsaw.

          A weekend or two ago, I was using a power drill, and being a little too casual, I started to lower it to the ground after taking my finger off the trigger, but before it came to a stop — and it ruined a good pair of khakis and dug slightly into my knee before it stopped.

          I shrugged it off, of course…

          Reply
      1. Bart

        Okay, get a chainsaw but will you do as Marcel Ledbetter did when he tried to buy a Nehi Soda at a beer joint and he was refused service? Reading the discussion about chainsaws reminded me of the Jerry Clower routine about Marcel and the beer joint. In another routine, he talked about Marcel being so proud of his chainsaw episode, he bought another one, made holsters and hung them off the side of his logging truck.

        Reply

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