Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Scattershooting while waiting for something to come on teevee

-- Will you be watching the coronation of Coathanger Ken this morning or the State of the Union this evening?  Or both?

With more angry conservative Congressional representatives in the House (and Senate) than ever, try to imagine how Obama's tax cut proposal is going to be received.  "You lie" is likely to be remembered as a peck on the cheek after tonight.

And don't miss Joni "Make 'em Squeal" Ernst's response, either.  The other Republican responses might be fun, but I'll read about them tomorrow rather than watch them tonight.  Between Greg Abbott and Rep. Curt Clawson, my toxicity detector can only red-line so many times in one twelve-hour period.

Update: Here's the speech Obama would be giving tonight if he were brutally honest.  Everybody (Democrat, Republican, Green, Libertarian, independent) should read it.

--The Wilmore Report The Nightly Show debuted last night to decent reviews.

“The Oscar nominations are out, and they’re so white, a grand jury decided not to indict them!”

Conservative viewers will appreciate that he got in a dig at Al Sharpton.

-- The inevitable backlash against the conservative slobbering over American Sniper is on.  It's already one of the highest-grossing films of the year -- in both red and blue states -- after its first weekend at the box office.  I haven't seen it yet, but I am pretty sure that I won't be able to ascribe either hero or coward status to Chris Kyle.  He suffered a lot of PTSD himself, particularly public delusions of grandeur away from the battlefield that have been debunked.  I think his is the premier cautionary tale of the dangers associated with sending young men and women to war even once, but certainly repeatedly.

We shouldn't do that again, but we especially should not do so if we cannot take care of our injured veterans after they return home.  And that includes their psychological wounds.

-- Selma is the movie I'm going to see first, however.  It has had its own controversies, truth-telling versus artistic license being the main one.  Having read enough about the interpretive disagreements involved, I'm also going to watch it without judgment.  Let's just keep in mind that this sort of thing isn't quite over yet in America.

(Update: Some people are still living with the damage they endured.)

-- Several US law enforcement agencies are now equipped with radar that can see what's going on inside your home.  Do you feel safe yet?

At least 50 U.S. law enforcement agencies have secretly equipped their officers with radar devices that allow them to effectively peer through the walls of houses to see whether anyone is inside, a practice raising new concerns about the extent of government surveillance.

Those agencies, including the FBI and the U.S. Marshals Service, began deploying the radar systems more than two years ago with little notice to the courts and no public disclosure of when or how they would be used. The technology raises legal and privacy issues because the U.S. Supreme Court has said officers generally cannot use high-tech sensors to tell them about the inside of a person's house without first obtaining a search warrant.

With each passing day, I feel less concerned about my megadata being surreptitiously collected, my e-mail and text and calls being monitored, and my cell phone being tricked by the cops while participating in a peaceful protest.

--  Yeah, we're all spending less at the pump but we're paying more at the grocery store.  Even giving the chickens more room to stretch their wings is pushing the price of eggs north.  As a conflicted carnivore, I will gladly pay that.

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