Unexpected good news

Cranky Old Man #89
a frothy mix of leftovers and links

Federal judge bucks prosecutors, jails CA man who mailed 75 racist death threats to anti-Trump politicians 

This man spent four years mailing at least 75 death threats to "anti-Trump" politicians, yet the prosecution sought no jail time. They asked for one year of probation. That's a surprisingly relaxed attitude for a prosecutor.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph Tartakovsky wrote in court records that the threats “caused anxiety, even terror, to recipients and those possibly in harm’s way,” but stuck by his recommendation of a one-year probation term.

The coverage doesn't cover this, but a glance at Google tells me Tartakovsky is a member of the Federalist Society, a well-known right-wingnut group. Perhaps that explains his relaxed leniency toward the illegal actions of other right-wingnuts.

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Tomorrow I'll work my normal hours at the insurance company that's employed me since 2013, and after that I'll be unemployed. Laid off. It's a tiny bit sad, but que sera sera.

I'm looking forward to what's next — a month for Doug. My original plan was a train trip to the west coast, but I'm not COVID comfortable yet, so my revised plan is to pet the cat, read some books, and watch a great many great movies.

No way can I afford a month without work, but I'm gonna have a good time and might take two. Brace yourself for lots of movie reviews.

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NTSB investigators seek clues after Pittsburgh bridge collapse 

Well, here's a clue. 

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File this under Unexpected good news: 

What happens when New York City announces a homeless shelter will open in a very high-income neighborhood — specifically, on "Billionaire's Row"? You and I both know, the locals and NIMBYs won't stand for it, and with lots of money for bribes and billboards and lawyers, that shelter will never open, not in that neighborhood.

Wrong. I'm amazed to read that the shelter opened in November, and it's still open. 

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Trump teases a presidential run and dangles pardons for January 6 rioters at Texas rally 

Of course.

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Sen Roger Wicker (R-Mississippi) compares Biden's Supreme Court pledge to affirmative action 

Biden's announcement that he'll name a black woman to the Supreme Court is affirmative action, but that's a good thing, as affirmative action usually is. 

Republican racists oppose the correction of past and present cruelty, because it might make future cruelty more difficult.

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Spinning DIY tree-house science. Also includes snow caves, house reconstruction, and zip lines. 

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Reading a blog, deciding I'll probably never read it again, I found a longish article advising everyone to put on their best self, every day.

That's a cliché now. Put on your best self every day, like you put on your best shirt or your best shoes or whatever.

That's just stupid, ain't it? Even if you have a best shirt or best shoes, you don't wear them every day.

I haven't put on my best self in years, and today's not the day either.

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Elvis Presley read English Fairy Tales, checked out from the library.

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I'm a careful dude, don't cut myself often, so I haven't bought bandages in years. Rip open an ancient Band-Aid™, McKessen™, NexCare™, or TopCare™ bandage, and maybe it'll stick to my skin for ten minutes, before dropping to the floor.

These Neon adhesive bandages are the exception. Amazon tells me I bought them eight years ago, and still they stick splendidly. 

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There is no punk without black women.

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COVID-19 has been a worldwide catastrophe. It's killed millions, left many millions more with what will apparently be lifelong disabilities, it's toppled economies, and it's shown the simple-minded meanness of about 40% of Americans.

It's been hardest on my cat, though, judging by her yowling all the time. Supply issues continue to prevent purchase of her preferred brand and flavor of cat food, leaving her to suffer through lesser brands and flavors. Yowl. Yowl.

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Social Security opens to survivors of same-sex couples who could not marry 

Challenging the policy that limited survivor’s benefits to married couples took years and a class-action lawsuit that bears Ms. Thornton’s name. In November, the agency dropped its Trump-era appeals against Thornton v. Commissioner of Social Security and Ely v. Saul, two federal lawsuits brought by surviving same-sex partners or spouses.

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I cut this from my review of Zero Effect, but I'll say it here because I watched the movie twice and one scene snagged me both times.

Ben Stiller is telling Ryan O'Neil what to do, to keep a sub-scheme in play, and he starts by saying to go to a particular restaurant and order something to eat. O'Neil interrupts, "I just had a late lunch. I'm not hungry."

That's a line I can't identify with at all — and that's why I'm fat. It doesn't matter to me if I just had lunch, or even whether I'm hungry. Hunger is irrelevant. I could eat a big breakfast at the diner immediately after eating a big breakfast at the diner.

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One-word newscast:

Robert LaMay 

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 Mystery links  — Like life itself, there’s no knowing where you’re going:


 Sing along with Doug:
♫♬  "Velvet Enabler"
Diablo Swing Orchestra 

Tip 'o the hat:
All Hat No Cattle • Linden Arden
BoingBoingCaptain Hampockets
In Some Weird Postmodern Way...
Follow Me Here • John the Basket
LiarTownUSAMessy Nessy Chick
National ZeroRan Prieur
Vintage EverydayVoenix Rising

Extra special thanks:
Becky Jo • Name Withheld • Dave S.
and always, Stephanie


  1. It is classless to celebrate Robert Lamay's death.

  2. Thanks — I aspire to classlessness. Certainly wouldn't waste any of my limited good manners on Mr LaMay.


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