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Thoughts on Events the Week of August 19

Posted in Uncategorized by EloiSVM42 on August 25, 2019

I am the chosen one: I’ll give Trump a pass on this comment, because he said he was only fooling around, and he specifically referenced trade with China, though it was perverse and anti-Semitic. However, when he followed that up a couple of days later with, “American companies are hereby ordered…,” he was clearly expressing a messianic delusion. (And who the hell is this Wayne Allyn Root, anyway?)

Trump channels authoritarian leaders and tinpot dictators, such as Putin, Xi, Erdogan, Kim or Duterte, but the authoritarian leader he most resembled this week is Caligula.  

The Filibuster: I’ve long been ambivalent about this practice. On the one hand, it can have the ostensible effect of slowing down legislation for more reflective consideration. On the other hand, it is, well, undemocratic. But now, I am convinced the filibuster must go, because it is being misused and abused.

Moscow Mitch McConnell is warning Democrats about ending the filibuster, which is rich. No one has abused the filibuster more than Moscow Mitch, who has cynically misused or ignored other senate rules as well.

Moscow Mitch’s argument is that if a simple majority wins a vote, then that vote can be overturned every time the majority in the senate changes. But it’s not as easy as that. To overturn legislation by the senate, it would also have to be approved by the House and the President as well. If those approvals occur (or a presidential veto is overridden), then such as rule change would unquestionably reflect the will of the voters. That’s the whole point of elections.

The more I think about it, I wonder why I was ever ambivalent.

It’s said that Moscow Mitch hates being called Moscow Mitch. Moscow Mitch. Moscow Mitch. Moscow Mitch. The man’s a scab on democracy. 

White Supremacy: These guys think they are justified in their hooliganism because western culture is so superior, which is an oxymoron. If they were superior, they wouldn’t do that.

There’s a case to be made for western culture’s superior accomplishments in recent history, but it was hardly always thus. The pendulum of cultural advancement swings. Look at Egypt, Mesopotamia, Japan, and so on.

And I would remind our current lot that the first representatives of western culture to come to America were a bunch of religious wackos and emotionally warped misfits. The Mayflower was full of Mike Pences. And as soon as they got here, they persecuted western immigrants who followed from western countries like Ireland and Italy.

More to the point, have you seen the barbaric behavior of these guys? If they’re supreme over anything, it’s outhouse rats and roaches, both of which endure, but belong under the refrigerator or in subway tunnels.

Second Thoughts: Trump admitted in France that he has them. (I can relate to this.) But are Trump’s second thoughts really second thoughts if his first thoughts aren’t really what you would call actual thoughts? Maybe if he gave more thought to his first thoughts, he wouldn’t have to have so many second thoughts.

Sudden thought: I would commit a felony for a cup of coffee infused into my feeding tube just now.

Preseason Football: I watched a little of the Dallas Cowboys game where rookie running back Tony Pollard ran well, and after which Jerry Jones quipped, “Zeke who?” But the play that got my attention was a passing play when Pollard whiffed on a blitzing linebacker and got his quarterback crushed. Whatever Jones, who is the best owner in the NFL, but dangerous when he thinks he knows something about football, may think about Pollard, I’m thinking the coaches are going to wince every time they put him in a game until he learns to block.

I’m watching the Cleveland Browns this year to see how Baker Mayfield does. Mayfield hadn’t taken a snap in game conditions this fall until he played a half against the Tamp Bay Buccaneers this week, and it showed. He was slightly off on several of his passes.

That said, Mayfield threw some brilliant passes that his receivers couldn’t handle. Those receivers were not Odell Beckham, Jr. and Jarvis Landry, who were sitting on the bench. They would have caught those balls, and they will be there to catch them during the regular season. Mayfield scrambled as well as ever.

I watched about a half of the Dallas Cowboys game Sunday, and they looked stronger than a bear’s breath. Pollard ran well again, not that it matters, and their backup quarterback – Cooper Rush, signed by Dallas as an undrafted free agent, in 2017, I think – played very well for a backup. Dallas looked solid at all positions, save for head coach. Their opponent – Houston Texans – is only a middle of the pack team, but Dallas mauled them.

Sadly, Houston’s featured running back – Lamar Miller – who hadn’t taken a snap in pre-season until this game, sprained an ankle (let’s hope it’s just a sprained ankle) on his very first carry and had to be carted off. The Texans immediately pulled their starting quarterback from the game. They were not about to risk another key skilled player in a meaningless game, and I don’t blame them. Preseason needs reform badly.

The college season opening game between Florida and Miami was a dandy. There were five lead changes, many terrific plays, and a couple of disastrous ones. The intensity was playoff level. There were mistakes, which is typical of a first game, including so many holding penalties in the first half, one might think they were watching Sumo wrestling rather than football. The refs contributed a few boners too.

The refereeing brought into relief a problem that has been festering in both the college and pro football for a while. As the games have become more pass oriented, calling pass interference has not caught up. It is unjustly inconsistent. If not standardized, it will harm the games.

Florida won the game, but they did not cover the spread. I think Miami may have the better long-term future. They were much younger, but very talented. (I worry about this with OU’s offensive line.)

That said, both teams had defenses infinitely better than any Oklahoma has put on the field in years. OU has a new defensive coordinator, Alex Grinch, who seems to have the right stuff (You’re a mean one, Mr. Grinch.) It will be interesting to see if OU improves defensively this year. They’d better.

Sunday night, Andrew Luck announced he is retiring after seven years in the NFL. This is sad. Few quarterbacks have come out of college with more talent, but he had no “luck” with injuries. They were more like a chronic disease with him, and he said No mas.

Lest we feel too sorry Luck, he has a couple of things going for him. He made $97 million in his seven years. He could have made much more had he stayed even a month longer, but he should be able to live on $97n million. Also, he went to Stanford, so if he runs out of money, he’s smart enough to make a living. He was an engineering major and has a degree in architectural design. (He was smart enough to choose mental and physical health over more money.) He’s probably already got offers to be a network commentator.

When the NFL power rankings came out, the only one that seemed way off to me was the Indianapolis Colts at Number five. Way too high, I thought. Now that Luck is gone, they will fall precipitously.

Status of the States: South Carolina gets the cup because Senator Lindsay Graham doubled down supporting Trump’s crazy talk this week. Most Republicans jostle each other to kiss Trump’s ass like piglets at a sow’s teats, but Graham French kisses it, which is singularly disturbing imagery.

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