How’s Your Head? [DOT 9/11/20]

Did you celebrate a little (or maybe a lot) this weekend?

Or maybe you just feel relieved.

On Saturday I went to an impromptu dance party in my friend’s front yard & then my neighborhood had a champagne toast.

Either way, we all deserve a little breather. Welcome back and I hope you had a great weekend!

Complete sentences! Plans! Leadership! The bar is so low, but I’ll take it.

President-elect Biden and Vice President-elect Harris are confronting a pandemic, an economic crisis, calls for racial justice, and climate change. The team being assembled will meet these challenges on Day One.

Meanwhile…I know Rip covered this yesterday, but I will never stop laughing at this.

It began on a gold escalator. It may have ended at Four Seasons Total Landscaping.

We just have to survive til then…

‘Very worst of the pandemic’ ahead in US with no apparent strategy, experts say


Sound Up!

Have a happy Monday y’all!



  1. So the latest fuckery I just learned about concerns the General Services Administration, a supposedly independent arm of the Federal government. It is the Joan Holloway from “Mad Men’s” first season of the federal government; it has the vast office manager role.
    Trump appointee Emily Murphy, its head, is refusing to sign off on paperwork necessary to get the transition started. During the transition the incoming team visits the departments and agencies, who turn over their transition plans (if any; I doubt Trump let many of them create any) and discuss things to watch out for, and it releases some funds to aid in all of this. Current employees go along with this because they are career civil servants who stay on through multiple administrations. Only the very top jobs change with administrations, which goes a long way toward explaining both why so much chaos has descended on the federal apparatus over the last four years and why it was able to function at all.
    Em’s reason? The states haven’t certified their ballot counts yet. This is errant nonsense. Even after blowout elections where there is no doubt it takes states a while to certify their ballots. Meanwhile, beforehand, the transition gets underway, and people get together, including the incoming and outgoing presidents. 
    Not in this White House. And the icing on the cake is that Trump has declared, probably via tweet, that he will boycott the Inauguration because to appear “would be an insult to democracy”, stolen election, voter fraud, pedophilia rings operating out of pizza parlors, who knows what else he mentioned. 
    By the way, many vendors are selling Four Seasons Total Landscaping t-shirts and the holidays are coming. The perfect gift for the Trumper in your life.

    • Yeah, it was mentioned on Newshour last week that many of the career civil servants who’s job it is to make certain that this sort of nonsense doesn’t happen have been quietly forced out over the last four years. This kind of crap is why, while I do understand why people are celebrating, it feels so out of place that they are. There is a whole lot of damage that we need to fix/recover from, and entirely too much of it is effectively invisible. (this is GuessImStillALurker, by the way.)

          • And it was a MASSIVE scandal, because it cost taxpayers… (gasp!😲) *fifteen thousand dollars😱🥴…
            An amount that–in light of ANY of the grift & graft that this administration has done, is terribly, sadly, 100% laughable, because it’s such a tiny drip in the floods.🙃
            Hell, nowadays, it’s just *one* month’s pay for the “work” of speaking in public, and bangin’ a Trump son.🥴

              • 15K.
                It wasn’t just that they stole the W’s from the keyboards…
                It was that they then glued them to all sorts of various things, including iirc, the walls, door jambs, and signs inside the west wing(?), and apparently there was LOTS of high-school style grafitti in places like bathrooms, which then had to be repaired (cleaning, replacing some of the signage, repainting grafitti-ed walls, etc.)
                Looks like the keyboards were $3-4K of the damage,according to the linked article, the total was 13-14K, i seem to remember the final tally being reported as “approximately 15K”
                A huge waste of taxpayer dollars, of COURSE!!
                But a sad & paltry sum, in light of the last 4 years.😕🥴🤯

                • …actually, now that you remind me that does sound quite familiar…for a moment there I thought it was like one of those thousand dollar lightbulbs or whatever they find as line items on military budgets

      • Nice to see you! 
        And yes, I live in MD and anecdotally know of several people who have left government in the last 4 years, including one who worked at Justice and took his substantial talents to the national Black Caucus.  

    • Have you seen the reports that Melania and Jared are trying to intercede and get Trump to concede? So apparently insanity is like hemophilia in the royal bloodlines, and Trump’s blood relatives are doing no such thing. Of course it is only Trump and the blood relatives facing numerous indictments when the circus is forced to leave the fairgrounds. 
      I also read some speculation about pre-emptive pardons that Trump might grant as twilight descends simultaneous to his further descent into madness. Trump probably doesn’t realize this but those pardons only shield from federal prosecution. The DA from the Southern District of New York, Cyrus Vance Jr., who famously declined to prosecute Jeffrey Epstein and one of the Trumps, can’t remember which one, might be a little weak on this. Plus I think that office deals with federal crimes. But NY’s AG, Letitia James, seems to be raring to go. And Trump might rue the day he opened all those domestic hotels and golf clubs, because that gives state AGs in multiple locales cause to look into various aspects of his business dealings.
      And then there are the Russians…

      • This is an interesting take. This guy who actually wrote The Art of the Deal is saying Trump will start taking out his frustrations on his family.
        You have to wonder at what point do they attempt to save themselves? Are they just too intertwined in his criminal dealings to basically extricate themselves and walk away? I mean the two idiots, Donj and Eric, are too stupid to do anything else. But I could see Ivanka and Jared noping out of there. Particularly if, as the article states, Jared takes the brunt of the blame. 

          • …I think a lot of people assume she’s been checking off the conditions of the pre-nup since the day they got hitched with a permanent eye on the door…but who knows…you’d have to imagine the diminishing returns kick in at some point?

            • “you’d have to imagine the diminishing returns kick in at some point?”
              If she doesn’t manage to divorce him, before the 400K comes due from the banks (remember, y’all, he signed papers saying those were personally guaranteed!!!😉🤣😈), and/or if he gets charged for Tax Fraud/other assorted financial frauds, the $$$ Mel’s been counting on & sold her soul for, for the last 15 years, will simply go *Poof* in the night.
              Her best bet MIGHT just to be to take some sort of hit on the prenup/hope that she negotiated strongly enough when she & Baron moved to DC, and pray that she gets out of the mess, BEFORE DontheCon goes down…
              Or before one of the other members of tge TrumpCrimeFamily decides to turn states’ witness, in return for a lighter sentence.🤔

          • I’ve always said Melania is conducting a business transaction. She’s got a contract, and she’s sticking to it. I suspect there was a presidential rider added that specified that her term of service was extended through Trump’s presidency, because she’s a useful visual for the MAGAts, who see Trump as an aspirational figure, a person they could be if they were rich. They can all pretend they could have a Melania, too. 
            Melania never cared about Stormy Daniels because it didn’t matter — Mel’s just following her agreement. They’re basically in the same line of work (no slam on sex workers). The only difference is that I strongly suspect Melania limited or refused physical contact as part of her terms of service (yes, I’m aware of Barron and there are other ways to make that happen — I do believe he’s a Trump because you can bet Donnie had him swabbed). 
            Melania’s problem is that Trump consistently refuses to pay his contractors. He’s certainly not going to be able to do it now. So her only recourse to collect what’s owed her will be through the courts, which is guaranteed to be extremely messy.
            Question is, will she go quietly or make a fuss? I think it’s all going to depend on her financial situation, which is probably dicey, at best. If she can quickly latch onto another rich guy, she might just take the loss and move on. 

            • Mel’s a little dim, I think, but canny. Like others in her profession I assume she demands cash up front and there is a bank account or several in her name floating on an off-shore island somewhere. 

              • this!
                I’m sure that when the forensic accounting is all done–however many years from now that may be–we’ll discover SHE was making $$$ off the campaign fund, too.
                Because there’s no way the OG trophy-wife in that family was gonna settle for less, financially, than the younger women workin’ the campaign trail, and acting as TrumpCo arm candy.
                If Lara & Kim were getting 15K/mo (180K a year), you KNOW Mama Mel had something grifting HER way, too.🤨 

            • I think it will also depend on how much Donny wants to fight for custody of Barron.  Obviously, he’s too much of a sociopath to actually give a shit about the kid–but for the purpose of hurting Melania, I can see him putting a lot of effort into it.

              • …on the other hand…the kid is already bigger than him if I remember the last pic I saw that had both in frame

                …& he ain’t good with stuff that doesn’t let him feel like the big man…so maybe if the kid’s lucky his mother will have taught him how not to take any of his dad’s bullshit & he’ll get to skate

                …that’s about the limit of my potential goodwill towards any member of that family, to be honest?

            • The ONLY quibble I have with your assessment, Bryan, is that Melania didn’t care about Stormy.
              My guess is that–judging by what she said on tape–it prob’ly bugged her A LOT.
              Not the part where her husband slept with a porn star–
              But the part where the American People were then able to feel sorry for her, as the poor wife & mother who got “cheated on.”
              I’m SURE Mel didn’t care about the cheating.
              But to someone with an ego comparable to her husband’s,** being an object of pity, from people SHE feels are beneath her (like all those Middle-class Republican Housewives!), had to rankle *quite a bit*😈 
              **hers HAS to be–there’s no WAY she can be with him, and be a person with a “regular”/healthy ego.

      • …like the shenanigans you mentioned in that first comment I had read some stuff about it, as it happens…& it seems that if either jared or the mrs had a go they didn’t get enough traction not to be sent back out to toe the official line of spurious bullshit, at least per the guardian?

        …but as for that first comment about dragging their feet on the transition stuff…I think part of the problem is they don’t know how the handoff process works because they weren’t remotely competent when they were the incoming admin for a start…plus they seem largely so unfamiliar with how any part of functional government works that it’s plausible they don’t know how laughable their excuse is for failing to have their homework ready now that school is back in session?

        …I don’t know…it’s probably more likely that they’re just petty AF on the balance of probabilities…but I sometimes struggle to ascribe to deliberate fuckery what can be explained by scrabbling blindly out of sheer ignorance?

  2. Regarding the Pandemic, and adults in the room;

    There are three co-chairs on the board–as some of y’all may have heard, Obama Surgeon General Vivek Murthy is one, along with Clinton FDA commissioner Dr. David Kessler, and Yale professor of Public Health Dr. Marcella Nunez-Smith

    And these are the folks rounding out the rest of the group;
    Dr. Luciana Borio, Dr. Rick Bright, Dr. Ezekiel Emanuel, Dr. Atul Gawande, Dr. Celine Gounder, Dr. Julie Morita, Dr. Michael Osterholm, Loyce Pace, Dr. Robert Rodriguez and Dr. Eric Goosby.

    Zeke Emmanuel,most of y’all will remember, is Rahm’s big brother, and was very involved in the setup of the ACA.

    Dr. Gawande, for the non-public-radio crowd/non Mayo stan(😉) is a doctor & author who’s big on making medical outcomes better–with among other things, the use of organization, planning, and checklists (VERY similar to the ones used in the airline industry!), in order to take some of the human-error factor *out* of medicine.

    And then there’s Dr Osterholm… 

    As a lifelong Minnesotan, frankly… he’s one of my personal… heroes? I guess I’d have to say.

    The man is a Minnesota, and frankly, NATIONAL treasure, and this panel of experts would 100% be incomplete without Mike Osterholm on it. WITH him on board, Americans couldn’t be in better hands. 
    Osterholm is an infectious disease expert, and has literally spent my entire adult life trying to keep the Minnesota and frankly American public safe. I dunno if you guys remember the salmonella outbreaks in peanutbutter a few years back?
    The University of Minnesota set up “The D-team”/”Team D,” as they became known (yes, the D was for Diarrhea!🤣), and Dr. Osterholm was the lead on the teams of scientists & grad students, who finally figured it all out.

    Osterholm has also had a bit of a resurgence on You Tube lately, for his interview yeeears ago on Oprah when he explained that the next pandemic was simply a matter of *when*, not IF it was going to happen.

    He’s a GOOD dude, highly respected scientifically, but ALSO highly respected & regarded as a good dude by the students in the U’s Infectious Disease Program I’ve been lucky enough to meet a couple grads of the program, and both of them said he really IS “that guy,” and someone they immensely enjoyed the honor of working with & for.
    This team is the team Americans needed, from the beginning of the pandemic.** And it’s the sort of competent, qualified, and experienced team, the American public deserves to get, with our tax dollars. They’re starting too late to do any good for more than a quarter-million of us–with the skyrocketing rates of illness, perhaps as many as half-a-million, by the time Biden & Harris take office…
    But we DO, finally, have some adults in the room, who will be looking out for the good of the American people.💖
    **It’s too bad that we can’t have these folks working hand-in-hand with Dr. Fauci, but I DO suspect that when he’s fired by the Trump administration, he’ll be snatched up by the Biden team–and that if *somehow* Fauci manages to stay, he’ll simply be rolled over into the team, once the Biden administration begins.

  3. You know, there’s something that’s really been bothering me a lot over the past couple of days:  the fact that Trump still received the 2nd highest vote total in American history.  This means he got more votes than Clinton got in 2016.  This means that over 71 million people in this country–just over 20% of the total population–voted for the ignorant, racist, psychopath.  You can bet your ass the Republicans have already noticed and will be doing everything they can to keep these dangerous fuckers engaged for future elections.

    • …I think that might truly be the most disheartening aspect of all of this?

      …even allowing for the idea that some of them are functionally brainwashed & others for whatever reason are more afraid of what the Dems would do than the unholy shambles of the last four years it’s a damning indictment of how poor the judgement is of a staggering proportion of the voting public

      …supposedly christ begged his old man to”forgive them, for they know not what they do” but it seems to beggar belief at this point that the vast majority of that minority did not in fact know exactly what they did

      …there are still some untapped voters that hopefully would have come down against him (like the ex-felons in florida that were promised enfranchisement & might very well have flipped the state has they been given it) but that’s still a shit-ton of malignant stupidity to have wandering around endangering the undeserving majority?

    • Yeah, I wrote a post about it last week and RIP tried to talk me off the ledge. It’s both sad and frightening to discover that 71 million people are so stupid or psychotic that they supported this orange asshole. At that point Biden hadn’t won, so that sliver of hope wasn’t available to cling to. 
      A TV writer and blogger, John Rogers, once did a post on the Crazification Factor, saying that 27% of the population is basically nuts (
      It’s worth a read. And maybe 20% isn’t as bad as it could have been. 

    • This victory is indeed clouded by what you and SplinterRIP and many others here have pointed out. I truly just cannot wrap my head around their support of what amounts to institutionalized cruelty and destruction. And by their, I means millions of my fellow citizens. Locally, I tend to live in a bubble of people involved in the nonprofit sector and the arts and animal rescues; my employment is much of the same, and as for online life, I hang about here. Here’s hoping that Biden/Harris hit the ground running, and with aggressive, hard-hitting political maneuvering. 

      • The aggressive, hard-hitting political maneuvering will be key.  If they make the same mistakes that President Obama made–trying to play nice and expecting the Republicans to negotiate in good faith–then, they’ll just squander their time in office.
        To be sure, it won’t be easy to play hardball because the Republicans have burrowed themselves into every aspect and branch of government over the past four years.  But, they damned sure need to channel their inner LBJ and twist some arms.

    • …it’s like the dude who tried to go after morello on twitter about not knowing his shit only to bite it when he found out that he doesn’t just have a political science degree but one with honors from harvard

      …small minded people only have so much mental real-estate & their worldview just won’t fit a lot of reality in, I guess…so they probably caught a reference to “badges” (& maybe “crosses”) the word “justified” & the phrase “chosen whites” & thought (for a given value of the term) “hey, that sounds like our kind of tune”

      …but mostly I think they fixate on that last bit about chanting “fuck you, I won’t do what you tell me” because their god-given mandate to live with their heads up their ass is pretty much the core of their identity as far as I can make out?

      …&…I’ve already thought about this more than any of them, haven’t I?

      …really have to get that habit under control before it breaks my tiny little mind

    • You’ve also gotta wonder, if the doofuses doing the dancing thought it was Kid Rock, instead of Rage?🤔
      *YOU Folks* all know Kid Rock & Rage are….. entire galaxies apart, when it comes to music…
      But to an un-trained ear, who doesn’t know music well, but who CAN pick up on certain riffs…. i wonder if they really DON’T simply think it’s the Dumbass from Detroit?🙃
      American Badass blatantly samples/uses some other famous riffs–for example, if you listen early on,

      He’s OBVIOUSLY sampling/copying the beginning of Metallica’s Sad But True;

      (Metallica’s Wherever I may Roam *also* has that same drum tempo change & guitar bit, if you listen closely around the 0:45/6 mark, just in a slightly different key/chord from A.B.)

      But after the big tempo-switchup at about 2:39, American Badass DOES start to sound a bit “Rage-y”…so i really wouldn’t be surprised if they thought it WAS Kid Rock
      And OBVIOUSLY the dancing dummies aren’t listening to the lyrics, too!😉😆😂🤣

    • not exactly following…but one of my coworkers buys into ive heard enough to never really want to look into it
      i figure its contagious….like if you read into it enough…you catch a case of Q and suddenly believe it
      not risking it

    • …not exactly…I kind of checked out what the bullshit they were hawking was when I first heard about it because it seemed too absurd to be taken seriously

      …then every now & again I’ve sort of checked in…like when they tried to co-opt the save the children thing…but I wouldn’t claim to be exactly up to speed on the whole mess

      …did gather that the guy who ran the biggest of their hub/site things stepped down just the other day, though…& I believe some people had a theory that if Q was any one person these days it was likely to be him (or his dad)…& that if (as seems likely) it’s more of a gestalt entity that they were pretty much the default gatekeepers of the brand?

    • I’ve been tracking it on & off, since it first started popping up over on frog Twitter a few years ago (just like I keep tabs on the nazi/white supremacist/militia crap, because old habits.. are just that, really🙃💖)
      Haven’t caught any since the election, tbh, but thanks for the reminder to keep an eye out!😉

  4. Hey friends. I’m new here, figuring this out. I briefly lurked maybe a year ago when TPTB threatened to kill subblogs, but then never made an account. Now that it seems like a done deal that GT will be killed, here I am. Am I deadsplintering right? Are there some pointers compiled somewhere? 

    • You made it! I am going to update some “How To” posts soon.

      You’ll see the categories either to the right or at the bottom depending on whether you’re logged in on a pc or a mobile device. There is also a sticky notes widget that shows tags you can click on and recent comments/posts.

      You’ll see your star notifications next to your avatar in the top-right corner which has a drop-down menu that allows you to view your notifications and view or send private messages. Feel free to pm me by sending it to @myopicprophet if you run into any issues before I get to updating those How To posts.

      If you receive a pm, you will get an email notification. Please do not respond to the email directly. Login to Deadsplinter and go to your inbox to reply (otherwise the intended recipient will not receive it).

      Until I get around to those How To posts, this might be the best place to start especially if your links on DUAN (Deadsplinter Up! All Night) fail to autoembed.


    • …much as it sucks that it took a tragedy to get you to sign up it’s still a welcome surprise to see you round this way

      …& yes…pretty sure you are indeed deadsplintering right

  5. Thanks all. It does seem like a friendly place, but I hate change. It’ll take a little getting used to, but it seems like there’s some decent functionality here that’s lacking on reddit, so it does feel like a more natural transition.
    @myopicprophet I’m curious about the sticky notes – it looks like relatively recent posts, but not in chronological order… Unless it’s ordered not by when the post was started, but by the time of the last comment?
    Oh, also, I clearly am having some trouble getting my avatar right haha. But I’ll try on desktop later to see if that fixes it.

    • I am with you on the hating of change and there are a lot of things I wish could be that can’t. For me, it didn’t take too long for the pros to start outweighing the cons and I certainly hope  the same goes for you.

      The sticky note pad has 3 sections. The posts are listed in chronological order (don’t let the “backwards” date format fool you) by time of publication but sometimes, for various reasons – lately on account of the backing up of a few Kinja blog posts – we keep some posts “stuck” to the top of the main page which would make the sticky note look like it’s out of order.

      The middle of the sticky note pad has a list of the tags. If you click on a tag, you’ll end up seeing every post that has been tagged with it the same way as if you’d clicked on a tag at the bottom of a post. The WordPress theme has some built in limitations which is why there’s a category list we’d be happy to add to if there’s a kind of content you’d like to see without sifting through the “front page” – sort of like the tags work but more like sections headings than a hashtag kind of thing – so if you’d like a listing for groupthink, for example, let us know.

      The right of the sticky note pad is a list of the most recent comments in order no matter what posts the comments were on.

      Hopefully you’re able to get your avatar sorted out. If not, let me know and we’ll get it how you want it.

      • Well now I’m confused because I swear yesterday there was a 7/11 above a 8/11 but now they’re all in order (it took me a second but I did realize I was looking at European date formats). No clue, maybe my eyes were crossed. Had a long weekend of moving.

        I was thinking a groupthink category would be good, but topics probably make more sense. Then again, I know we were talking on GT about moving here, so I expect to see more GTers in the next few days/weeks, especially after they actually blow it all up, so it’d be good to have categories that feel familiar/welcoming. Maybe what makes the most sense is to put in a couple categories for the regular features we had there, like Arts and Crafts OT. Let me pose the question over there and see what people think.

        • Feeling safe speaking on behalf of more than just myself here…

          Any posts from GTers in whatever categories they choose to have, including crafts, will be welcome if not encouraged?

          In fact, we already have a crafts category but those who requested it didn’t end up posting in it because, well, Kinja didn’t die.

          Categories only show up in the list when there is at least one post in them.

          Also speaking on behalf of more than just myself, I think that the GTers who might be hesitant to join an already existing community will find this community to be just as welcoming and friendly as GT.

          After all, we did all of this specifically with GT and Backtalk, etc. in mind.

  6. @myopicprophet OK, I got another one for you. (Sorry, hope I’m not driving you crazy with questions.) How does posting work? I don’t see an option to create a post, so I’m not sure if it’s something where you need to be added as an author? And would authorship apply only in certain categories? 
    Still gathering opinions on new categories/tags, but there’s definitely support for a Groupthink one anyway, as well as maybe Lazy Lit Talk, Arts & Crafts, and Photo Gallery. (Maybe Photo Gallery goes under art though.) 

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