News & Links:
Sunday, January 21, 2024



#401  [archive]
JAN. 21, 2024

DoJ: Ex-IRS employee who leaked Trump's tax returns intentionally got job to disclose records
    Excerpt: ... “After applying to work as an IRS consultant with the intention of accessing and disclosing tax returns, Defendant weaponized his access to unmasked taxpayer data to further his own personal, political agenda, believing that he was above the law,” wrote prosecutors Corey Amundson, chief of the Justice Department’s public integrity section, Jennifer Clarke and Jonathan Jacobson. ...
    Me again: That's bullshit, of course. There's no indication that Charles Littlejohn thought himself "above the law" — he's pleaded guilty, after leaking numbers that fueled major media news stories that embarrassed Donald Trump and a few other wealthy anti-American wastes of flesh. "Above the law" much more describes Trump and the others whose lack-of-taxes were exposed.
    Mr Littlejohn is an American hero, and about to be punished for it.

Each Facebook user is monitored by thousands of companies 

Researchers confirm what we already knew: Google results really are getting worse 

The insurance apocalypse conversation America won't have 

Colorado journalist says fuck prior restraint, dares court to keep violating the 1st Amendment  

The actual number of Americans jailed or imprisoned, about 2.3 million  

No-one should be sentenced to die in prison 

World’s five richest men double their money as poorest get poorer 

Top wingnut at Sinclair TV buys Baltimore Sun newspaper  

Supreme Court case that could cripple federal agencies is secretly funded by billionaire wingnut Charles Koch 

Climate scientist Michael Mann’s defamation case over Koch-backed attacks finally comes to trial 

Nikki Haley says America has never been a racist country 

Far-right figures try to create Christian nationalist 'haven' in Kentucky 

Republican governors in 15 states reject summer food money for kids
    Excerpt: … Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) said she saw no need to add money to a program that helps food-insecure youths “when childhood obesity has become an epidemic.” Nebraska Gov. Jim Pillen (R) said bluntly, “I don’t believe in welfare.” … 

Colorado town’s newspapers stolen, after a story about rape charges at the police chief’s house
    The police chief has never heard of the internet, or the Streisand Effect.  

Three cops who killed Manuel Ellis will each receive $500,000 to leave Tacoma police 

Study: Cops' field drug tests generate nearly 30,000 bogus arrests a year

Parole denied for 68-year-old in Alabama: "A life sentence for growing marijuana"   

More police are using your cameras for video evidence  

Amusing, Interesting, Outrageous, or Profound
    AIOP is my Lemmy page, for anything that's (in my opinion) amusing, interesting, outrageous, or profound. It's mostly a rough draft of this page, but you're invited to stop by. 

Interview with a drug dealer: "I’m providing a social service" 

Imagine if male genitals were treated like female genitals 

Terry Southern — writer of Dr Strangelove, Easy Rider, Saturday Night Live
    Excerpt: "People in New York don’t think the end of the world is funny," a studio executive supposedly told him on the Strangelove set, but Southern wasn’t from New York. He was from Texas; he found the end of the world hilarious. 

Star Trek's "Yeoman Smith," played by Andrea Dromm, was hired by Gene Roddenberry "so he could nail her" 

♫♬  MUSIC  ♫ 

Ballroom Blitz — Sweet 

The Ecstasy of Gold — Ennio Morricone 

Moon River — Audrey Hepburn 

The Sound of Silence — Simon & Garfunkel 

You're All a Bunch of Slaves — Weird Al Yankovic 


forgotten man 

Glen Cochrane
hockey player, Philadelphia Flyers 

Tisa Farrow
sister, actress

Nancy Green-Keyes
casting director, Rush Hour 

Mo Henry
negative cutter, The Big Lebowski 

David L Mills
inventor of Network Time Protocol (NTP) 

Tom Purdom
author, The Tree Lord of Imeten 

Joyce Randolph
actress, The Honeymooners 

Richard Romanus
actor, Mean Streets 

Mike Sadler
early antifa 

Marlena Shaw
singer, "California Soul" 

Susie Tennant
rock'n'roll promoter

Howard Waldrop
author, Them Bones 

Anthony Wann Williams
writer, The King of Howard Street 

Mary Weiss
rock'n'roller, The Shangri-Las


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 the AVA, BoingBoing, Breakfast at Ralf's, Chuff, Dirty Blonde Mind, It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time, Lemmy.world, Looking for My Perfect Sandwich, Miss Miriam's Mirror, Voenix Rising, and anywhere else I've stolen links, illustrations, or inspiration.

Special thanks to Linden Arden, Becky Jo, Wynn Bruce, Joey Jo Jo emeritus, Jeff Meyer, 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. I always thought of Mary Weiss (Obits, above) as a little older than me is because she and her group, The Shangri-Las, were headlining in America and touring with The Beatles in Europe when I was in junior high school. As it turns out, the two sets of sisters that formed the Shangri-las were performing in junior high school themselves when a shadowy wanna-be record producer named George "Shadow" Morton stumbled upon the "Las" about two hours after he'd written a song on the side of the Long Island Expressway called "Walking in the Sand" which he hoped would get him laid. It didn't (for all the right reasons) but it made the Shangri-Las "the bad girls of Rock 'n' Roll" and had them touring with the Beatles within months. And THAT happened for all the right reasons. George (Shadow) Morton's next song, only a couple of months behind "Walking" and a little more dramatic, if only because sneaking a large motorcycle up a Manhattan Skyscraper elevator to be voiced on a recording is no small event, even for the Big Apple. That song was, of course, Leader of the Pack, and it shot the four teenaged girls straight up into orbit with the Gemini and Apollo space programs. By then, I was 16 and so was Mary Weiss.

    Their careers faded slowly after that, and Mary went into the New York business of office furniture sales and did very well. She was still known and followed by many of us from those odd 1960s when, upon leaving her office furniture showroom on September 11, 2001, saw the first plane hit the tower and cried, "Look out, look out, look out!".

    No cause of death was immediately revealed, but no one can assert that she didn't warn us. She could really belt it out. Good night, Mary.


    1. She made a comeback some years ago, and then disappeared out of the limelight again despite many people seeking her out. It's like she remembered why she dropped out the first time.

    2. No mystery here . . . Mary Weiss was the lead singer and she was singing lead on "Leader of the Pack". That's Mary signing, "Lookoutlookoutlookout" in the song with the hog in accompaniment. That was Mary with the falling jetliner, the falling building, the falling thousands uncredited but ever present.


    3. There is a legitimate and ancient question about who was gunning the Harley throttle. Since Shadow Morton gets full or partial credit as producer (depending on the source) you might guess that he was revving the bike, but since George "Shadow" Morton got his nom de tune by conveniently becoming a shadow whenever there was any work to be done, it's possible that the gunner was Jeff Barry or Ellie Greenwich. It's a mystery of history.


    4. Even all those years ago, sneaking a motorcycle up the elevator seems valiantly authentic. I'm sure sound effects would've been easily available and affordable, but they didn't want the sound effect, they wanted the sound.

    5. Doug, that is dead on target well put. Sounds like a man who spent more than just a few adolescent years in the 60s. Although I've heard the 70s described as the 60s but with live rounds. By the 70s, I'd become a non-violence guy: the marshal with the red arm band trying to keep the protest march to a minimum of mayhem.


    6. Wasn't gonna say this, just becaise it's a big change of subject, but what the hell.

      I become less and less certain that a minimum of mayhem can accomplish anything. Non-violence and peaceful protest don't work, when you're trying to appeal to the better side and morals of people with no better side or morals.

    7. Maybe, but there's a problem assuming that if peaceful means can't accomplish anything, then violent means are called for. That might have been true in centuries past, but there are a number of (oh shit, Mrs Hoople requires the sweat of my brow)...jtb

    8. Sorry about Mrs Hoople and the sweat.

      I don't endorse violence, but sweet jeepers I *understand* it. 'Bout the only thing I don't understand is why there's not *more* violence.

  2. Nice Jack Delano photograph. The man DID know what to do with a beam of light, didn't he?


    1. I've looked through his major collections of work, and it all varies between good and great and holy shit.

  3. Seagull sounds in the middle of Walking in the Sand, intriguing. Other than that, three women singing, with no visible instruments. They're playing only their voices and clapping their hands, and it's rock'n'roll. Cool song. Pathos.

    Always The Dead, always better than most bands still alive.

    The original Ooh La La, still beautiful. Needle on vinyl, I played the hell out of that single. Still love it, though these days for me it's usually the cover by Dustbowl Revival.

    What's left to be said about Mr Cohen? Sure glad being a novelist didn't work out for him.

    And I have had a pretty good week, I guess. At our age, any week you survive is a good week.


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