The News: Tuesday, July 11. 2023

#340   [archive]

Bank of America to pay $250M in refunds, fines over customer abuses
    Google tells me BofA's net worth is around $228-billion, so these fines and refunds add up to about 1/10th of 1% of the company's value.
    What does the bank get for that money? No charges against anyone involved in at least tens of thousands of felonies, which by the way seem quite similar to many thousands of earlier felonies nobody at the bank was charged with, in 2014 and 2022.
    If I committed tens of thousands of felonies, repeatedly, could I get BofA's deal? I'm worth about $5,000, including my life savings and everything I own, so I'd have to pay a $5 fine.

Judge won't block Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard
    It's the completely expected triumph of the big guy, again.

Tumblr says it’s going to 'fix' its 'core experience' to appeal to new users
    At first click, I expected to rewrite the headline as, "Tumblr announces plan to follow Twitter and Reddit toward self-destruction," but guess what? Tumbler's strategy makes sense.
    They're redesigning the user interface, to make the site easier to use, which sounds smart. There are half a dozen Tumblr pages I visit regularly and like, but I've never even been able to figure out how to post a comment on Tumblr.

Google is testing its medical AI chatbot at the Mayo Clinic
    Once the tests are done and the AI is installed and in use everywhere, will seeing a "chatbot doctor" be more affordable for ordinary folks than seeing a real doctor?
    Damned doubtful, I think. AI will be a big savings for health insurance companies, but cost the same $35 co-pay for patients. 

Amazon claims it isn't a "very large online platform" to evade EU rules 

Vice ran out of money (for everyone except its executives) 

HCA Healthcare data breach exposes information of 11 million patients 

Twitter beats out Threads for coveted Taliban endorsement 

Colorado commies protest Christian anti-gay coffee house 

Deadly flooding hits several countries; scientists say this will be increasingly common 

Climate change bringing more than heat — malaria and dengue on the rise

Underground climate change could crack foundations and warp subway tracks 

The climate is changing in a hurry 

Climate change is increasing the number of "1,000-year" storms, like the one that just hit New York and Vermont 

Connecticut troopers wrote thousands of fake traffic tickets to fake white people, to reduce its preponderance of tickets issued to actual black people 

Rapist deputy gets 90 days, plus probation 

Police chief is suspended with pay during investigation nobody will talk about

New Jersey cop convicted of manslaughter in deadly car chase shooting 

Police in Ontario fight to keep their names secret after killing (another) man in mental health crisis 

LAPD officers fatally shoot woman armed with a dumbbell bar 

Two Placer County sheriff deputies arrested for sexual crimes within 48-hour window

 • Cop who turned off bodycam before slamming man’s head into glass wall is convicted after store security footage is revealed 

Police chief who became a serial arsonist is sentenced to life terms, plus 75 years 

Houston police sued for allegedly hogtying, racially profiling Latino man 

Sheriff had years of complaints about corruption and dysfunction… from his deputies 

Abortion activists are dealing with violent, gendered threats, most of which come from men 

Missing guy who made unsubstantiated claims that Joe & Hunter Biden are crooks is charged with acting as an unregistered agent for the Chinese government, trafficking weapons, lying to federal agents 

Trump says Biden is a cokehead 

UFOs can "fly underwater and defy physics," claims Republican Congressman alleging cover-up 

While supporting racism, Senator Tommy Tuberville claims to oppose it 

Arizona Republicans invite wingnut anti-Semite to address college students 

Trump blasts Nevada – a 2024 swing state – as "disgraceful" after reporter embarrasses him 


Why was Benjamin Franklin's basement filled with skeletons? 

McDonald's supersized failures, from McTrains to McPlanes & beyond 

Ranking supermarket chains 

♫♬  AUDIO  ♫

Bloody Well Right — Supertramp 

Fly Too High — Janis Ian 

Leaving on a Jet Plane — Peter Paul & Mary 

My Guitar Wants to Kill Your Mama — Frank Zappa 

Think — Aretha Franklin 

👁  VIDEO  👁

Wes Anderson visits a video store 

This guy wants to be a bus driver 

Sand bubbler crabs make tiny sand balls 





          • Click

                    • Click

⚰️  THE DEAD  ⚰️ 

Mike Batayeh 

Manny Coto 

Andrea Evans 

Minnie Bruce Pratt


Cranky Old Fart 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 ye olde AVA, BoingBoing, Breakfast at Ralf's, CaptCreate's Log, Looking for My Perfect Sandwich, One Finger Medical, Two Finger Magical, Miss Miriam's Mirror, Nebulously Burnished, RanPrieur.com, Spock Variety Hour, Voenix Rising, and anywhere else I've stolen links, illustrations, or inspiration.

Special thanks to Linden Arden, Becky Jo, Wynn Bruce, Joey Jo Jo, John the Basket, Dave S, Name Withheld, and always extra special thanks to my lovely late Stephanie, who gave me 21 years and proved that the world isn't always shitty.


  1. The less money you have, the more and the more likely you're punished. That's not a fault in the US justice system, that IS the system.

  2. You want to jail exectives at Bank of America even though they knew nothing about what was going on?

    You're just going to say yes, I know, but please stop and think about it first.

    1. >You want to jail exectives at Bank of America even though they knew nothing about what was going on?

      You cannot possibly be this naive, right?

    2. Sometimes it seems that for every pair of boots there are a dozen bootlickers like "6070" above. This explains why the world we live in is forever fucked. If everyone at the bottom of the pyramid simply looked up and said "NO" there is nothing the 1% could do about it. It would be so easy... yet something is stopping us. I don't understand.

    3. I don't understand someone who thinks people should get away with crimes. Guess I'm just a law & order guy.

    4. Some junior vice president of marketing is not responsible for when workers in another department did. It is the workers who did these things, not the company's management or stockholders. You want to punish the whole company for it!

    5. 6070:

      >Some junior vice president of marketing is not responsible for when workers in another department did.

      That's disingenuous, and you know it. Top execs need punishment, yes. Nobody is saying that every one of the probably 4,000 middle managers in the company needs to go to jail.

    6. Listen to the captain, 6070.

      And maybe eventually answer my question, below?

  3. Yes, and no.

    People who break the law ought to be punished, yes or no?

    1. People who smoke marijuana in Idaho, where weed is fully illegal, should probably not be punished. "The laws must change someday, but it's gonna take some time" . . . John Mayall


    2. That's a higher-level conversation, o'course. I was trying to reach 6070, so aiming lower.

      He/she seems to be a Republican, so it's probably a disconnected number.

    3. When I was young I dated a hot little disconnected number for a while, but I could never get ahold of her.


    4. From the openminded liberals I get insults and no interest in a conversation. I get it. This is a place where counter opinions are not welcome.

    5. Stand-up-worthy, John.

      6070, this is a place where counter-opinions are disagreed with. Still waiting for an answer to my question, above.

    6. Captain HampocketsJuly 14, 2023 at 1:01 PM

      6070: I believe that you are trolling. If not, I apologize for the insult. I do not believe that I have insulted you.

      When I asked "You cannot possibly be this naive, right?" I was dead serious. Do you really think that execs at BofA did not know what was going on?

      When I stated "That's disingenuous, and you know it." I was again, dead serious. You may disagree with me, but you can comprehend English, and string together words to make sense as a sentence. Nobody said that "Some junior vice president of marketing is ... responsible for wen [sic] workers in another department did.

      You are being intentionally obtuse, I fully believe that. I am not insulting you. I am telling you that you are transparent.

    7. Our pal 6070 hasn't said anything yet that looks like an honest attempt at dialogue, but I have a hard time telling the difference between trolling and just old-fashioned denseness.

    8. Maybe 7060 works at Bank of America.

    9. As a Junior VP of Marketing

    10. Its surprising and disappointing that you all so quickly go to insults. I say punish the people who did the crimes, and that's some of the sales staff. The computer knows who input what fake accounts and those are the people who should face punishment. Not the company they work for.

    11. If the company they work for is so very innocent, why'd they pay the $250-million?

  4. Hey, numbers: The people who people this place don't agree with one another on a shitload of matters. Except that El Dorado is a superior movie to Rio Bravo.

    There's also some general agreement that the 20th century American Dust Bowl was a preview of coming atrocities.

    Doug doesn't much like cops as a sub-species, and I worked for a police department for three years, yet he's sort of promised me his recliner if he kicks off first. I just have to figger out how to get that motherfucker on the bus (the recliner, not Doug).

    and I sign with my given name:


    1. Numbers? More like Deuteronomy, amIrite?

      I would enjoy a hearty discussion about what to do about corporate crime, even with 6070 if he/she/they's interested and capable. Gotta start, though, with the presumption that corporate crime exists.


The site's software sometimes swallows comments. For less frustration, send an email and I'll post it as a comment.