Hello Wednesday!! [DOT 16/2/22]

Hey guys you’ve made it half way through the week – way to go you, good job!


Sandy Hook families reach $73m settlement with gun manufacturer

Also good!

Covid-19 daily case rates plunge to one-fifth the record high reached a month ago. But thousands are still dying from Covid-19 every day

Aww, that’s too bad.

Man sentenced to probation in US Capitol attack after revealing he lost his job and now delivers pizza

Ew no.

Sonny Perdue likely to be Georgia’s next university system chief


Stock futures inch lower after major averages snap 3-day losing streak


Especially for Cousin Matthew…

Have a great day!



  1. I have watched that trailer, and others, many, many times. The plot sounds hugely promising, but so did the plot for the first movie, which wasn’t exactly a dud but barely rose to the level of a Downton Christmas episode. At least Barrow got some [SPOILER ALERT]

    Such is my pathological obsession that I read an interview with my least favorite character, Elizabeth “Cora” McGovern. She didn’t have much to say, like her character. I always thought, “What a waste, flying her to and fro LA when surely there must be an American actor already living in London who could do the part.” Liz revealed that she is that actor, married to a Brit and has been living in London for years.

  2. Crazy old man goes on public rant.


    “The accounting firm Mazars has been threatened, harassed, and insulted like virtually no other firm has ever been,” [said crazy old man].

    He went on to share figures from a 2014 Statement of Financial Condition prepared by Mazars for the Trump Organization [because he doesn’t know it’s 2022 or remember little details like a worldwide pandemic].

    [Crazy old man went on to say] “Mazars, who were scared beyond belief, in conversations with us made it clear that they were willing to do or say anything to stop the constant threat which has gone against them for years. They were ‘broken’ and just wanted it all to stop. … ” [actually, that tracks].

    [Crazy old man] concluded the statement by repeating allegations against members of [Hillary, duh] Clinton’s 2016 campaign staff that were put forth in a recent [ridiculous] court filing by Special Counsel John Durham. Trump has called the allegations “bigger than Watergate,” and over the weekend he suggested that unnamed Clinton campaign staffers should be put to death [what the actual fuck].

    [Crazy old man] also appeared to reference the fact that both AG James and Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg are Black — calling their investigations “racist.” [Crazy old man probably still has his father’s white hood in the closet, nonetheless fails to grasp the concept of “racism.”]

    • Mazars apparently flipping is bad for him because it’s a sign to everyone else who might flip how weak he is right now.

      If he couldn’t protect someone who might cost him anywhere from tens to hundreds of millions of dollars or more, why would anyone think he could protect them?


    • …the crudely effective nature of this stuff never ceases to be galling…but it remains perfect fodder for the purposes & audience it’s intended for?

      …there’s a sense in which this is just more of what has become a familiar routine of shit-stirring that’s superficially only aimed at keeping a particular set of resentments simmering in order to retain the sympathies of his “base”…& there’s maybe another in which it’s a funhouse mirror distorted reflection of a much more…I hate to use the word sophisticated to describe it but certainly more complex function?

      …the “bigger than watergate” thing seems like a good example…the shit that went on before, during & after his time occupying the white house is absolutely a level of corruption that would make nixon look like a model citizen…whereas the accusations he’s trying to apply the term to are made of such insubstantial pretexts that they don’t appear in the legal documentation of the filing by durham that is supposedly their foundation

      …leaving aside the part where durham’s whole exercise is largely an extension of bill barr’s attempts to sabotage the DoJ’s ability to pursue matters pertaining to mueller report/impeachment stuff

      …in which regard both have been way more successful than anything resembling justice would seem to allow for…but…very possibly not as successful as the slew of potential defendants whose fortunes remain tied to dolt45 need them to be

      …it’s another thing folks like marcy wheeler have been patiently parsing for the last few years

      …but I think there’s an element of the nonsense that the aura of obfuscatory bullshit surrounding it causes to be discounted when it ought not to be?

      …when there are actual allegations in ongoing legal proceedings that turn on his having falsified valuations & years of reporting that makes the existence of his debts a matter of public record it’s absurd on its face that he should in the same breath deny that he & his businesses are carrying a lot of debt & claim that they are both in fact worth substantially more than their valuations would attest to

      …but that kind of makes it easy to write off the whole thing as a vainglorious idiot in some sort of narcissistic feedback loop when from another perspective he’s basically just begging his audience to keep the faith & maintain the pretense that he’s a successful but unfairly persecuted victim of nebulous forces that are the sort of thing right-thinking americans ought to take up arms against…the whole tree-of-liberty/blood-of-patriots-&-tryants bit…which pretty clearly only makes that kind of sense if you’re prepared to exist in a state of precariously balanced denial & cognitive dissonance…basically that part just refreshes the ongoing element of stochastic terrorism that’s been something of a defining feature of this batshittery..but that same letter of jefferson’s has him saying

      The people can not be all, and always, well informed. The part which is wrong will be discontented in proportion to the importance of the facts they misconceive.

      …& from a certain malevolently self-interested point of view one way of looking at that is to proceed on the basis that your goal is make as great a number of people as possible as wrong as possible about about as much as possible with a special emphasis on misconceiving matters of huge importance…which to me sounds kind of a lot like something AOC described in a new yorker interview pretty recently

      You look at the capture of power in the right wing, the ascent of white nationalism, the concentration of wealth. You cannot really animate or concentrate a movement like that—you can’t coalesce it into functional political power—without a sense of persecution or victimhood. And that’s the role of this concept of cancel culture. It’s the speck of dust around which the raindrop must form in order to precipitate takeovers of school boards, pushing actual discourse out of the acceptable norms, like in terms of the 1619 Project or getting books banned from schools. They need the concept of cancel culture, of persecution, in order to justify, animate, and pursue a political program of takeover, or at least a constant further concentration of their own power.

    • This part, tho;

      “Trump has called the allegations ‘bigger than Watergate,’”…

      What with the way ‘ol DonnyDumbass projects?🤔🤔🤔

      Dear GOD, I hope it’s accurate, snd that we finally see him go away Capone-style, on RICO, FinCEN, Tax Fraud, Mail Fraud, and other assorted High Crimes & Misdemeanors😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😈😁🤗😆🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🥳🥳🥳

  3. Here’s a sad thread about the latest person quitting Spanfeller Industries, this time a writer for The Onion:

    Herb managed to drain the humor from the single funniest institution of the past 25 years and got a collapsing audience and crashing ad revenue in return. And his idiotic LA office plan for AV Club shows he’s eager to drop money on office space he doesn’t need for no clear reason.

    Also, yesterday Jalopnik’s top writers David Tracy and Jason Torchinsky left to start their own website, The Autopian


    Great Hill Partners must be loaded with incompetents if they manage money this badly.



    • I’m beginning to think that Mossy Toxic Dump Partners looked around, bought Get/Out Media for pennies on the dollar, and proceeded to hemorrhage it to provide financial loss/offsets against assets it really cares about. Although my theory doesn’t hold true if you consider that 1) veterans are fleeing in droves and, if you read between the lines of the crap that’s now posted, they’re hiring zero-experience chattel straight out of college probably paid per post, so costs are probably way down, and 2) it’s about 60–75% ads vs. content (some of the “content” is advertising given only the slightest gloss) so that must be worth something.

      Still, I guess it opens up a platform for “fresh voices,” much as no one wants to hear these voices and longs for the voices that were driven out.

      • Honestly, this is a situation where Occam’s Razor leads us to incompetence as the most likely explanation. Spanfeller is an ignorant dinosaur who snapped up a company on the cheap and tried to “revolutionize” it by adopting management practices from 1982. Seriously, as an old white guy, I’m aghast at “dress code” and “office hours.” Who does that now? I work for an accounting firm and we don’t have an office, for crying out loud.

        There’s also a fundamental blind spot toward the creative process. Creativity is NEVER improved by micromanagement.

        Finally, the old “boy” network is truly a real thing and it also never improves a company. I say “boy” because it’s less and less a gender thing these days, though it’s clearly one for Spanfeller. “Networks” spring from insecure leaders who hire people who are familiar and ass-kissers, rather than conducting searches and hiring for competence. I’m watching this play out at the company that laid me off. They also don’t grasp why income keeps dropping, because they have this great “leadership.” It’s the workers who generate profits, not the senior vice presidents.

        • The main reason (besides personal) I shit on my managers is they remind me of the same moronic, smug, self absorbed/satisfied, incompetent networking assholes that took down a company, while the energy and efforts of their employees were flushed down in futile attempt.

          I feel the pain of the Get Out media employees. It took me a long time to give a fuck about work again. I also learned (painfully) you can’t get too attached (but it’s hard.)

          • Yeah, my previous company hired a “change agent” CEO who has then proceeded to fire most of upper management and replace them by appointing his friends. No searches, no competitive hiring process, and the friends don’t have any experience. As you might imagine, rank and file are literally running for the doors. Panic has set in as middle management realizes they don’t know how shit works. They’re hysterical, and the “change agent” is meeting with resigning individuals and basically begging them to stay. They are not. Last I heard, they were operating with 25% of the total staff gone. It’s actually hard for me to hear much because I only know 2 people still there (out of 250 at its peak).

            I’ll note that in addition to network hiring, the “change agent” has reduced work from home (everybody has to come in at least 50% of the week), has reshuffled staff without regard to their wishes or careers. For example, a meeting planner is told to be an admin — no negotiation, do it or leave. Others were abruptly assigned to customer service. They of course quit. They launched a new web site that promptly crashed. The place is a train wreck.

            The “change agent” is now using a phrase called “positive attrition.” If it’s so positive, why are you begging people to stay?

      • What they’re doing is a puzzle. They’re too heavily staffed to be pure content farm publications but not well staffed enough to put out real content. They appear to be spending a lot on chief editors but they’re hiring incompetents.

        You’re right that if it was just a goal of creating losses for offset purposes, why not keep better people on staff and accept the costs?

        If the goal was to simply pare costs back to the low cost earlier days of publications like The Onion or Jezebel it would be pretty simple. The Onion started out as a student newspaper in Madison Wisconsin, and just going to a model of hiring a few talented editors and a small staff of writers, it wouldn’t be hard — there are a lot of good writers out there due to the shrinkage of online publications who just want steady work and don’t want to spend the next five years in Hollywood development hell.

        But they seem devoted to a more expensive model of offices and higher overhead.

        There’s still money out there for acquisitions of content, as the purchase of The Athletic for $500 million shows, but Spanfeller seems driven to make sure his properties have no serious brand value for resale.

        And if they’re just looking to coast on momentum from old content, why do things like destroy the archived images for The Onion which ruins old articles, or eliminate comments from other sites which drive SEO? They’re sunk costs, so at this point eliminating those things is just killing future revenue without offsetting cost savings.

        • Because paying for good content isn’t important or valuable to these people. They’re not looking to build the site into something; they want to cut to the bone and wring out every last penny and spin off anything profitable then flip what’s left to some other less-ethical hedge venture capital whatever and get out with slightly fatter wallets.

          I know that you believe that media companies are sitting around in boardrooms designing right-wing strategies to bamboozle the public but the reality is way simpler: They just sold off to owners who were disinterested in the product and whose only goal was to make a quick buck.

          • The problem with that theory is they’re not following a strategy of cutting spending to the bone while maximizing revenue from existing assets. It’s weirder than that.

            They’re doubling down on a model of office-based staff at a time when remote work is a lot cheaper, they’re spending a lot on editorial overhead, they’re continuing to keep headcount numbers fairly high, and they’re damaging the value of sunk cost assets in their archives.

            Basically, they’re not even competently following the established models of either slashing costs and inflating revenue or chasing a brand building pump and dump scheme.

            It’s a mishmash of both at the same time that seems destined to undercut any path forward.

            I think incompetence really is the only explanation, and it’s probably due to a corporate approach that creates a lot of blind spots that can be papered over by people like Spanfeller who are used to Costanza maneuvers.

            • It is if they replace unionized people who have been there for years with cheaper replacements who are easier to control in an office (which they probably got a deal on and/or are renting from another arm of their own conglomerate). Also, office-based is easier to sell to people like that because, again, the content doesn’t matter, it’s numbers on a paper and it’s easier to quantify that way.

              By the by, this is not to say they’re not doing it incompetently! My previous newspaper employer had a companywide layoff (~10-20% ish) and the very next day announced major bonuses for the CFO and CEO as if newspaper reporters and editors wouldn’t fucking obviously notice and let their pals at other newspapers know thus making it a story where there didn’t have to be one. These are not smart people. But their goals simply do not align with what readers or people with souls want.

              • …I think I kind of find myself leaning towards tinfoil-hat territory when I consider the overall trajectory of things from the days of gawker through the various stages of thiel-adjacent downward spiraling to the state of those sites these days?

                …aside from the obvious & more-or-less-direct ways that the verdict on the hulk hogan case tanked the value of those sites it’s not that big of a stretch to say that a lot of what subsequently depleted the kind of engagement that used to make the comment sections an asset had a somewhat directed shape to it on the business side of the thing (greying/ungreying certain sorts of accounts along with driving staff out of the door in effectively-if-not-prosecutably shades of constructive dismissal & drowning the sites in things like shitty ads/autoplaying videos or “improvements” that consistently fucked up the user experience of participants in the comments…& so on & so forth ad nauseam)…which seemed to go hand in hand with something akin to “brigading” from certain classes of troll accounts that are fairly closely associated with certain right wing hot-button topics…the classic example of which being the ones that descended in droves on any mass shooting splinter reported on…though in smaller numbers there seemed to be enough of those kinds of comments/commenters for it to plausibly be a full-time job for some of them

                …I think that stuff had a non-zero impact on driving down the price G/O had to pay for the things…& made the case to render them “profitable” by driving down costs to the point where they fell below whatever income the sheer weight of ads & such can produce in terms of revenue & claiming that’s good business a good deal more plausible than it would otherwise have been

                …so I guess to me it’s not implausible that not only is some or all of what you’re ascribing to incompetence not only considered a feature rather than a bug but also “priced in” to an agenda I don’t think it’s too tinfoil-hatted to suggest thiel fairly explicitly has/had but which required him to be involved indirectly rather than personally wreaking havoc in an overt attempt to drive them into the ground

                …at least ockham’s razor doesn’t seem to offer me an explanation that isn’t compatible with that being the wider context in which the death-by-a-thousand-cuts approach to the kinja sites has been managed…& while ignorance & incompetence can explain most of that…there’s a degree of intentionality to the overall trajectory I find hard to explain without requiring that to be willful ignorance &/or incompetence?

                …I think a good chunk of what I have trouble with is figuring out which is the cart & which is the horse…but I guess what it sort of looks like to me is that the business is the cart & the writers/staff they’ve driven off used to be the horse…so having whipped the poor beast to the point that it’s thrown over the traces & bolted the tactic has broadly been to throw as much as possible overboard & shift whatever weight is still in the cart to the back so that it keeps the yoke pointed away from the ground while the whole thing freewheels down a steep decline in what can be passed off as spontaneous forward motion if considered solely in the two dimensions that keep the downhill part out of the calculation…which I guess would have the newly “profitable” status roughly equating to the part beyond the foot of the hill where the cart continues to coast along on that momentum

                …I strongly suspect I’d be better off if the bits of my brain that come up with this stuff were more inclined to follow lemmy’s example & find more productive things to ruminate about?

                • Right there with ya, in the aluminum section of the grocery (or maybe dollar?) store, Rip!


                  I mean what better way for the multi-billionaire guy who swore to annihilate Gawker off the face of the earth vengeance on a website he loathed (YES Denton was wrong and 100% a dick, and NEVER should have outed folks–even asshats like ^that guy!!!^), than to be the covert money behind an attack (again), and then to staff the ship with folks you *know* are incompetent & who will simply bungle their way into obliterating destroying that institution you swore you’d take vengeance upon?


                  If I were a multi-billion-dollar holding person, with a burning hatred of something, unlimited funds, snd knew a few stupid schmucks with egos larger than the Goodyear Blimp, I’d be willing to throw down a few hundred Mil, to sit back like Dr. Evil and just wait for the implosion…


                  Like I said, I’m TOTALLY with ya, in tin-hat territory!…

                  Luckily, I took hatmaking during my first pass at college–and it was one of the few classes that go-round that I managed a straight-up A in–so I can make whatever styles of hats we want–Wire-frame, Buckram, Felt, Tophat/Victorian-style Riding hat, or even a crown, if that’s what you prefer!!😉😁🤣💫

  4. It seems the guys running away from the Trucker’s revolt faster than you can say “Emergency Measures Act” are the same fuckers who cheered/egged them on.  Like Nazi and Confederate symbolism were a big warning or something (a detail our good disinformation MSM left out till things started to get really ugly and normal folks kept pointing out by posting pics.)

    “When people show their ass, they’re telling you who they really are.”

    -paraphrased quote from an early mentor of mine

    Waiting for the big show to happen in Ottawa now.

    BTW, where’s all the Faux Newz coverage that now the Canadian Gubbiment has dropped the hammer on their Nazi buddies?

  5. Inject it into my veins

    One particularly trippy outgrowth of this research is the idea that black holes are two-dimensional holographic projections of three-dimensional objects. In other words, black holes could be optical illusions analogous to holograms that produce a 3D image from a 2D surface. This is a useful way to think about black holes in part because subtracting a dimension simplifies attempts to make gravity fit into quantum field theory. What’s more, it also raises the wild possibility that our entire universe, likewise, exists in two dimensions as a holographic projection of a three-dimensional space.

    • I think I’ve mentioned before that I once had the privilege of proofreading a pretty advanced physics textbook. (I did a bunch of textbooks over the course of a couple of years; the marine biology one was my favorite.)

      The physics one freaked me out. Most of it was physics like you’d get through in a course, but just in case the students were particularly adept, there was an astrophysics add-on, fascinating, and THEN, as if your students had no need to take this course, so advanced were they, there was a final theoretical astrophysics component. The two things I got out of it was:

      1. It is almost certain that “universe” is a misnomer; there must be multiple.

      2. There’s a pretty good chance that these multiple universes are duplicative and existing simultaneously.

      [many, many formulae and graphics accompanied; luckily I didn’t have to proofread those]

      So our universe is one of many, and at the same time (“time” being relative) there are many of ours alone, and the others…

      • That would be the “M” theory and the multiverse.

        This is just as – if not more – fascinating (because of the infinite possibilities it could lead to):

        hope to realize a theory of gravity consistent with the rules of quantum mechanics, called quantum gravity.

        • …wish I’d had more time today…because between the overlap between “possible worlds” as a hypothetical mainstay of a bunch of stuff I found fascinating (back in the hazy mists of time when I was a student who could spend all day reading about that sort of thing) & the varying extents to which I have managed to understand things like m-theory or quantum gravity in the intervening years…there’s a lot of weeds I’d have been happy to get into about this stuff…& I’m not good enough at collapsing superpositions to distill them all down into a comment I have time to make today…let alone possessed of enough time to have the sort of conversation about that kind of thing I’d theoretically be happy to?

    • I joked with my son, who at the time was majoring in physics, that I think airplane pilots are magicians, and that I couldn’t levitate a plane even if you showed me all the steps.  He laughed.

      I recently read that physics can’t fully explain how an airplane is able to stay aloft.

      • …the example I remember was that according to the math it ought to be impossible for bumblebees to fly…rather than the planes thing…but I suspect the two might be related in how that works/shouldn’t-work

        …either way it always reminds me of a somewhat dark book by a guy called robert cormier called the bumblebee flies anyway which I’m pretty sure would be called YA fiction these days?

        • I can’t remember how I ran across it a few weeks ago, but this article was pretty interesting, on the “bumbles shouldn’t be able to fly!” thing;


          Basically, it apparently boils down to “YES, if Bumbles had wings like fixed-wing aeroplanes, they wouldn’t be able to fly… but when one makes their own mini-motherfucking *hurricanes* by whipping their wings in multiple directions at once, you can create the forces necessary to lift your body and an equivalent weight of pollen and/or nectar up into the heavens!”


    • But @Myopicprophet, how can Black Holes be holograms, when gravitational waves are a thing?!?

      (Obviously i like the theory about them being formed when two–or more–*large* gravitational waves manage to crash into one another–because the weirdness factor… kinda like a Beckett play, tbh… is strangely appealing!😉😁💖)

      • This is new to me as well. I think it is, at this point, merely being brought to the table as a possibility.

        I think, if they can somehow reach the conclusion by studying quantum gravity within black holes and find consistent predictability at the quantum level, it will either work with the theory of relativity or completely alter what we thought we knew about it.

        Many people, over the years, have attempted to disprove Einstein’s theory to no avail…but this can either prove it or debunk it. I didn’t have time to express how huge this process is and what it means or go into it at great length but, in theory (and what they’re trying to accomplish in a practical sense) it is BEYOND huge.

        The “M” theory was intended to be the “theory of everything” but it just may be the very beginning of our understanding of what everything is.

    • I figured. A Russian fellow at work pointed out that Russian can ill afford another war as even with the money from the recent jump in oil prices, they can’t sustain operations in the Ukraine AND Syria (if anyone has forgotten.)

      Let’s end the embargo on Venez oil/gas.

      • The thing that scares me is that anyone with a brain knew the US couldn’t really afford to invade Iraq in 2003 either. They talked themselves into thinking 120,000 troops for six months and Ahmed Chalabi would be plenty, despite overwhelming evidence and logic to the contrary.

        I’m hoping that Putin is better at this stuff than GWB.

  6. I feel the need to clarify my stance on pizza. If you are preparing chicken with Buffalo sauce, and putting it on a pizza that also has red sauce, may you feast with the gods in Valhalla.  If you are merely putting Buffalo sauce and diced chicken on a pizza dough, you should be involuntarily committed.

    • …I’m pretty sure that if I could manage to somehow induce these kinds of considerations to replace the ones about the sort of things I fill the DOTs with I’d sound less like the only perspective I’m familiar with is looking up from the bottom of some sort of doom-spiral…so I salute the manifestly healthier priorities of your subconscious

      …also…I’m pretty sure I agree…despite my recollection being that I managed to make myself out to be quite the pizza-heathen in that thread?

  7. They needed to have gotten in about two minutes earlier, before the House and Senate were evacuated, and taken hostages. It would have been all the pretext Trump needed to seize control of the nearby National Guard and mobilize more. Pence would have been the highest value target, but any collection of members of Congress would have been enough.

    • …I think in any version of events in which they actually invoked the insurrection act pretty much everything the insurrectionists themselves did on jan 6th would have been swiftly downgraded to the status of available-pretext…but I guess it’s possible there are some ways that could have gone in which the putative “quick reaction force” might have genuinely had some plans at least as outlandish as introducing mike pence to a gallows

      …so I don’t doubt there were people genuinely rooting for that day to go a much bloodier way than it did…but as things stand I guess I’m hoping each new bit of crazy that gets substantiated brings us closer to the point where the camel whose back gets broken by the proverbial last straw is the claim that it’s not possible to prove corrupt/criminal intent on the part of the major players in all of this?

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