It's as easy as that.

The Republicans are an entire political party out of their minds.

Cranky Old Man #96
By comparison, the Democratic Party has less interest in enthusiastically doing the wrong thing on every issue, but little interest in doing the right thing. 

To the Dems I'd say: Stand up for something smart, and explain why you're doing it. Maybe you'll succeed, or maybe the Republicans will block you. But either way, if you've done a decent job explaining why what you're saying is right, you'll win the next election everywhere outside of the Troglodyte South, because most Americans are not Republicans. 

Stand up for something smart, and win elections.

Fight for action against climate change, and explain the facts and the future. Most people actually love their children, some people even love their grandchildren, and would give a damn if they understood that it's science, not a 'controversy'. Other than platitudes in the party platform every four years, the Democratic Party is making no effort to explain to America what the future looks like, if we continue ignoring climate change. Damn, that's stupid.

Fight for single-payer health care, and explain why it would work. Explain that even it raises taxes, it would be cheaper for every American than what they're paying to for-profit conglomerates now. The Democratic Party can't make those arguments, because it's opposed to universal health care. They support it in the party platform, yeah, but never after the election's over.

Fight for voting rights, and against gerrymandering, and for simple fair play in elections. This is the easiest item on my short, silly list, because anyone who knows the difference between right and wrong wouldn't need much convincing. Yet the Democratic Party makes no serious effort to explain: Republicans want roadblocks to voting because they don't want black people to vote. Say it out loud.

Democrats could win enthusiastic majorities in Congress and hold the White House in perpetuity, if they'd simply stand up for something smart, on a few key issues where most Americans would agree. But the Democratic Party doesn't do that, because they're Democrats. 

Republicans offer bad ideas, and stupid people love bad ideas.

Democrats offer no ideas.

If the Democratic Party offered smart ideas, believed in them and actually fought for them, Democrats would win.

Yup, it's as easy as that.

♦ ♦ ♦ 

Canadian police make arrests, seize vehicles in Ottawa Freedom Convoy protest 

After nearly two weeks of nonstop assholery, police have begun making arrests.

I'm gonna go a quarter-inch out on a very thick limb: Cops are cops, and Canadian cops probably aren't much different from American cops. If so, then most of them are right-wing extremists, much like the horn-honking, traffic-blocking truckers. That's a major factor in why the mayhem has been allowed for so long.

♦ ♦ ♦  

The hacked account and suspicious donations behind the Canadian trucker protests 

The protests are not organized by Canadian trucking unions, the largest of which has come out against the protests. They also do not appear to reflect the values of most Canadians or most Canadian truckers: More than 80 percent of the Canadian public is vaccinated, including almost 90 percent of truckers, according to Canada’s minister of transport.

The speed at which the movement has raised millions of dollars raises red flags…

♦ ♦ ♦ 

To expose ‘critical race theory’ in classrooms, Republicans move to have teachers post all lesson materials online 

Jeez, that's insulting. Republicans have zero respect for what teachers do.

♦ ♦ ♦ 

Why didn’t Vanity Fair break the Jeffrey Epstein story? 

A reporter for Vanity Fair had rape-monster Jeffrey Epstein in her sights in 2003, but the magazine spiked her article. I've suspected that the coverage was shitcanned because Epstein was rich and well-connected, but this article raises doubts about the merit of the original article.

♦ ♦ ♦  

A century before Rosa Parks, a Black woman fought for her rights on an S.F. streetcar — and won 

Judge Orville C. Pratt acknowledged that railroad laws give transportation companies the right to make exceptions to their duty to carry passengers, such as when a person might cause danger, transmit illness or refuse to pay fare. However, the judge determined that skin color does not qualify.

"The accident of color is not legitimately embraced among the causes that justify exceptions to the rule," an October 3, 1864 newspaper article in the San Francisco Bulletin said.

That's a remarkable woman, and a remarkable judge, for 18-frickin'-64.

♦ ♦ ♦

Spotify is not about the music. 

Spotify’s profit requires that digital music have no value. Spotify continually talks down the value of music on their platform – they offer it for free; they tell musicians we are lucky to be paid anything for it; they insist that without their service, there is only piracy and zero income. Most tellingly, they invest nothing back into music. Unlike a record label, publisher, or most anyone else in the music industry, Spotify devotes none of its profits to the development of new recordings.

♦ ♦ ♦  

This lawyer should be world-famous for his battle with Chevron – but he’s in jail 

♦ ♦ ♦ 

"Free crack pipes" is the new "Biden banned burgers" 

♦ ♦ ♦ 

How hard would it be to hit Jeff Bezos’s superyacht with a rotten egg? 

♦ ♦ ♦ 

Starbucks fires 7 employees involved in Memphis union effort 

"I was fired by Starbucks today for 'policies' that I've never heard of before and that I've never been written up about before."

♦ ♦ ♦

Amusing: Admission to the Lyndon Baines Johnson Museum is free if your first, last, or middle name is Lyndon

♦ ♦ ♦ 

Lindy Hopping at the Savoy in Harlem 

♦ ♦ ♦

Real but ridiculous ads:
International House of Pancakes
Kentucky Fried Chicken
Mr Clean

♦ ♦ ♦

One-word newscast:

Mel Mermelstein
Douglas Trumbull

♦ ♦ ♦

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


♦ ♦ ♦
♫♬  Sing along with Doug

Cranky Old Man is annoyed and complains and very occasionally offers a kindness, along with anything off the internet that's made me smile or snarl. All opinions fresh from my ass. Top illustration by Jeff Meyer. Click any image to enlarge. Comments & conversations invited.
Tip 'o the hat to All Hat No Cattle, Linden Arden, ye olde AVA, BoingBoing, Breakfast at Ralf's, Captain Hampockets, CaptCreate's Log, John the Basket, LiarTownUSA, National Zero, Ran Prieur, Voenix Rising, and anyone else whose work I've stolen without saying thanks.
Extra special thanks to Becky Jo, Name Withheld, Dave S., and always Stephanie...


  1. The link below takes you to an article from The Daily Beast about how police agencies in general, and the FBI in particular, has/have been using uncredible "scientific" matching techniques for years to convict people who might or might not be guilty. This is a somewhat complicated topic, and it took me nearly a half hour to wade through the article (pausing here and there to research terminology) but it was definitely worth it. Some of this "scientific" matching testimony (particularly matching bullets with a particular gun) borders on pseudo-science, and has been used to convict people who were found later to be innocent. As with much evidentiary material, the problem comes with overstating the "hit rate" or likelihood that a particular item is associated with another particular item or with a particular person.

    I am not an across-the-board anti-cop guy. I worked for the police department in a mid-sized city and for the sheriff's department in a mid-sized county for three years back in the '70s. I didn't shoot anybody; I installed a computer-aided dispatch and call center mini-computer system using fairly primitive geobase technology supported by an early 911 county-wide implementation which connected all the law enforcement and urban and rural fire districts in the county. I was generally impressed by the dedication and professionalism of the staff of the call center, although I didn't often work with commissioned officers.

    OK, that's my recommendation and my caveat. Here's the link. Good luck.


    1. Two things —

      First, thanks for this. It's a solid article and I hadn't seen it, and I'd love it if folks tipped me off more often, toward more and better journalism.

      From years of watching Columbo and Mannix and Hawaii Five-O (only the original) I'd though bullet forensics was sound science. On a just, I might not have even questioned it. Finding that it's a little vague, like fingerprints, shouldn't surprise me but it does.

      This guy Agar works at the FBI crime lab, knows he's pushing unreliable evidence, and he's advising cops nationwide on how to use their unreliable evidence against criminal suspects. Yessir, that sounds criminal itself.

      Second, I sure wish I wasn't an across-the-board anti-cop guy. It would be nice to have an authority figure we could rely on in criminal situations, and on those rare occasions when a cop is needed, I wish I could call 9-1-1 without worrying that they'd make the situation worse.

      It's not so much the constant reports of police misconduct that makes me so wary, it's what happens after the reports, almost every time — a defense of the cop's misconduct almost every time, or at best silence. Getting a cop fired is amazingly rare, usually takes a court case when it happens, and when it happens the actual punishment is only a longer commute for the cop, because he'll be wearing a badge for the next town down the highway.

  2. Democrats offer no ideas.?

    Harsh. I don't see many good ideas from Democrats, and no spine, never any anger no matter how outrageous the other side is, but they have an idea once in a while.

    1. The first draft was a lot harsher.

      We are almost literally looking at the end of the world, and very literally looking at the end of our plush western-civilization lifestyle. Republicans say it's a hoax, and Democrats say we must do something but nothing gets done, and that's been the singalong chorus for 30+ years.

      If anything, I was not harsh enough.


🚨🚨 If you have problems posting a comment, please click here for help. 🚨🚨