Thursday, June 06, 2019


Here's an interesting story from Merrit Kennedy (NPR):

National Weather Service meteorologists noticed something puzzling on their radar screens in Southern California on Tuesday evening — a big green blob.
"It was very strange because it was a relatively clear day and we weren't really expecting any rain or thunderstorms," Casey Oswant, a NWS meteorologist in San Diego, tells NPR. "But on our radar, we were seeing something that indicated there was something out there."

So the meteorologists called a weather spotter in Wrightwood, Calif., near the blob's location in San Bernardino County. Oswant says the spotter told them the mysterious cloud was actually a giant swarm of ladybugs.

Here are some Tweets.

Link to headline article

Search results
  1. The reports that the large echo showing up on radar in Southern California last night was actually a cloud of ladybugs about 80 miles by 80 miles in size flying at between 5,000 and 9,000 feet:
  2. A swarm of ladybugs about 80 miles by 80 miles flying at between 5,000 and 9,000 feet showed up on the National Weather Service radar. No typos.

From NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC, here's some background on Ladybugs:

Most ladybugs voraciously consume plant-eating insects, such as aphids, and in doing so they help to protect crops. Ladybugs lay hundreds of eggs in the colonies of aphids and other plant-eating pests. When they hatch, the ladybug larvae immediately begin to feed.

Ladybugs live two to three years on average.  And let's note this:

Adult lady beetles have very characteristic convex, hemispherical to oval shaped bodies that can be yellow, pink, orange, red, or black, and usually are marked with distinct spots. This is a type of warning coloration to discourage other animals that may try to eat them. Like many other brightly-colored insects,they are protected by an odorous, noxious fluid that seeps out of their joints when the insects are disturbed. The bright body coloration helps some predators to remember the encounter and avoid attacking insects with similar markings. Adult females usually lay clusters of eggs on plants in the vicinity of aphid, scale, or mealybug colonies.

"Iraq snapshot" (THE COMMON ILLS):
Thursday, June 6, 2019.  You're not going to understand people who think differently than you by imposing your values on them.

We need many things in this world, Jay Newton-Small is not one of them.  At THE LILY, she serves up her stupidity and entitles it "Female candidates running for president in 2020 have to overcome sexist beliefs -- held by other women."  Actually, that headline works as a self-disclosure for her -- she's the one with sexist beliefs.

First off, non-college educated White women have never been Hillary Clinton's base.  They have tended to be on the groups most opposed to her.  Hillary has  no one but herself to blame.  Time and again, she has come off like a tone deaf monster (I'm trying to clean it up today) to this group.

Her remarks are always insulting to this group.  Hillary's not Bill, she's never learned how to communicate with people.  She can preach to the choir, she just can't go beyond it.

Jay is too busy defending herself and her own choices to note or notice any other woman.

It may really be time for women to be doing rap sessions again so that they can grasp that we are all different and that feminism is not about fitting into a cookie cutter mode.

Cookie cutter.  Cookies were Hillary's first mistake.  She wasn't sitting home baking cookies and being Tammy Wynette, after all.  With that remarks he not only insulted country legend Tammy Wynette, she also insulted a lot of women who did become homemakers.  It was a stupid remark for a politician's wife -- for a politician's wife who had political ambitions of her own, it was a fatal mistake.

As a feminist, I am fully aware that we are judged, that we have to justify our choices, etc.  That is done by society.  But here's the news flash for Jay and other feminists, that happens to non-feminists as well.  It's what happens to all women in this society.

Hillary's crack may have been intended to be humorous.  I honestly laughed at it in real time and took it as a joke.  I thought it could be a potential problem but assumed she'd right her course along the way.  That didn't happen.

That long ago remark has haunted and followed her.

To a group of women, that remark came off judgmental and as an attack -- maybe on what their lives were, maybe on what their mothers' lives were.

Hillary never made it better.

We don't have time to review everything she's ever said.  But her ghost written book IT TAKES A VILLAGE was seen as another insult by these women.

'It takes a village?  That uptight woman doesn't think I can parent my child!'

With this and any other off-putting remarks by Hillary, she could have fixed them.  She never bothered to.  She just left it with 'It takes a village.'  At any time, she could have appealed to the women she was ticking off by adding to the remarks, by saying something like, "It takes a village and you know what I'm talking about, mothers, it is hard work and you do so much of it all by yourself.  Raising a child is a super-human task."

But she didn't make remarks like that.  Instead, the woman who insulted women who stayed home was now telling them -- in their view, to their ears -- you are bad mothers who aren't smart enough to raise your own children and only a village is going to save these poor, little children.

Hillary was not attempting to insult this group of women.  But what she intended doesn't really matter -- especially at this late date.  We are all on the defensive and all aware that we are judged so when someone is speaking about issues that directly go to how we're judged -- do we work outside the home or not, are we doing a good job raising our children, etc -- we are not just hearing their words we are asking where they stand -- friend or foe -- and are they attacking us and the choices we made (which were choices from a smaller list than the choices that men have and which were choices that were often imposed upon us).

Some insist that 'traditional women' -- whatever that is -- should have supported Hillary by the late nineties because, even after Bill's public cheating, she stayed in the marriage.  While some women opposed to Hillary would have stayed in marriages after their partner had an affair, some of those women would have inflicted damage publicly -- he would have shown with a bruise or injury, he would have shown up with his truck keyed on the side, etc -- and most wouldn't have endured multiple cheating that was in the public eye.  (There was his affair with Monica Lewisnky.  There is his affair with Gennifer Flowers.  There was his admission -- by settling -- to some sort of pass at Paula Jones.  Those are facts.  In addition to that, there were rumors of so many other affairs.)

Hillary came off like a doormat on that issue.  Never forget that Rosie O'Donnell, one of the biggest Hillary supporters, in the early '00s did a comedy routine/rant where she called Hillary every name in the book and spoke of how disappointed she was that Hillary did not leave Bill, that she thought for sure she was only staying with Bill to get in the Senate and she couldn't believe, after getting elected, that Hillary didn't leave Bill.

Hillary came off like a doormat and that inspires pity.  It does not speak to strength.

If we've followed the above, we can get to strength.  Jay Newton-Small thinks she can talk about strength but she can't.  She can only talk about herself.  I'm so damn sick of this.

Let's go to one of her many stupid remarks:

For women, it’s a thin line between proving oneself capable and being seen as a bitch — essentially unlikable.
This is the conundrum for the 2020 female candidates. On the competency side, those with law enforcement experience, such as Harris and Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), have an inherent advantage. But Klobuchar has battled to balance her too-tough-boss image with “Minnesota nice,” while Harris is running on something of a unity platform. Warren has demonstrated her skills by providing the most detailed and comprehensive set of policy proposals among the candidates [. . .]

In what world do you live?  No one's worshiping Kamala or Amy but your, Jay.  You have defined their careers as strength.  The women you're writing about do not.  They might look at former-Senator Claire McCaskill as strong because Claire talked strong.  Her comments on rape, her comments on crime, she came off strong.

Kamala cannot do that.  She will lose support if she does because she's already under fire for having been a prosecutor.  She will lose support from her own ranks if she speaks the way she needs to in order to win the group of women (GOW is what we call this group for the rest of this entry).  To win GOW, she needs to talk tough on crime.  But she'll lose some of the Democratic base if she does that because she's already got a lurking shadow around her that she prosecuted unfairly and that some groups suffered because of her actions.

So Kamala's hands are tied on this with regards to her legal history.  But idiot Jay wants to pretend that it comes off strong and competent.  No.

Amy?  GOWs are aware of her image as a boss who attacks those working for her.  Most GOWs would see her not as a friend or a fighter but as someone who would turn that temper on them.  She can't appeal to them on work, she could win them by catering her messages around children.  'I'm fighting for clean water.  There's nothing more basic to our lives, as mothers, than clean water.  We bathe our children, we use it to cook our food . . .'  She could form connections that way and then GOWs might feel connected enough to support her (she becomes their friend they like even though she has that one flaw that we all overlook).

Elizabeth Warren does not come off strong to GOWs and there's no reason she should.  What has she done?  Her career?  GOWs feel she lied about who she was to advance her career.  Her oversight?  Doesn't she tend to notice a problem after it's too late fox it?

Jay Netwon-Small is impressed with college educated women and she expects everyone else to be.  She can't see past her own blinders -- she's not even aware that she's wearing them.

She poses as a feminist but she's not one.  And that's clear in the article too.  She never once mentions Tulis Gabbard.  Tusi's running.  Why the silence?

More to the point Tulsi is the only woman who appears strong to GOWs.  She is an Iraq War veteran.  That is strength.  That is also something they can relate to because they may have served or their sister or the daughter or their mother or a woman in the neighborhood.  They have a concept in their head of what being a veteran means someone did and it's not sitting behind a desk in an office or walking into a courtroom.

I'm not insulting attorneys, I'm explaining that Jay thinks this is strength, which is fine, but don't pretend to write about another group of women when all you do is impose your judgments on them. She doesn't understand them because she does not want to understand them.  That's a true of pollster she speaks with as well and that woman makes such an insulting remark about GOWs that we're never noting her again.  Not even if Ms. sends out a press release -- we will edit her name out of it.  I will never promote that woman at this space again, her words border on hate speech.  It makes me seriously question her interpretations of raw data (and it explains why she's been so wrong so very often).

To be clear, Jay Newton-Small had a solid topic to write about.  But she wrote about it very poorly.  She wants you to know what the GOWs think.  But she can't understand what they think because she doesn't grasp that every woman doesn't think like her.  What she values is not universal..  What I value is not universal.  And if you really want to understand another group, you need to understand what that group values.

Jay Small-Newton defines success and happiness differently than GOWs.  Until she grasps that, she's not going to understand why they vote the way they do.

There's also the issue of polling in her piece.  She doesn't really understand swing voters -- they're 'swing' because they go back and forth as the election approaches.  She chooses to focus on GOWs and insist that after the ACCESS HOLLYWOOD tapes of Donald Trump, they turned on Donald.

Based upon what?


We made the point repeatedly and early on that the press was creating an environment where honest polling would not be available.  The press -- egged by Paul Krugman in print and by many others over the airwaves -- crossed lines that never should have been crossed.  And they tried to shame people.  Shaming people will not make them vote the way you want when they step up to a voting machine or draw a curtain at a polling station.  It will make them lie.  It will make themm lie to a stranger who has called them on the phone and asked them about an issue that the press tells them they should be outraged by.

Especially when the statement is being misinterpreted.  Did people on the left really not hear what Donald Trump said?  Maybe.  Maybe when we're looking at someone we can't relate to, we jump to the wrong conclusions -- that goes back to being on the defensive that we noted earlier but now applied regardless of gender.

'Donald Trump said he grabbed women by the p**sy!'

That was the lie that the press ran with.

He was talking about kissing, as the full quote made clear.  And you could have reported it honestly but the press didn't.  They initially reported the full quote (some did at least) and then it became, 'Trump said he grabs women by the p**sy!'

This is what he said: "I better use some Tic Tacs just in case I start kissing her.  You know, I'm automatically attracted to beautiful -- I just start kissing them.  It's like a magnet.  Just kiss.  I don't even wait.  And when you're a star they let you do it.  You can do anything.  Grab em' by the pu**y.  You can do anything."

Donald Trump said he kisses women he finds beautiful, he just does it, doesn't wait -- apparently doesn't wait for permission or an invitation just kisses them.  That's creepy enough all on its own, no one needed to 'improve' on it. He gets away with it, he says, because he's a TV star.  Because he's famous, he can do it.  When you're famous, he boasts, "You can do anything.  Grab 'em by the pus**.  You can do anything."

When John Lennon said that the Beatles were more popular than Jesus Christ, some adults could hear that and still function.  Others were smashing the Beatles records and having meltdowns.  By the same token, many of us (including David Chappelle) grasped that Donald was not saying he did that, he was saying that you could do that.  What Donald confessed to was kissing women.

As the press refused to be objective and instead broke every rule to (mis)cover the election, the polls became meaningless.  Who you will support in a private vote and who you will pretend to support to a pollster can be two very different things -- especially if the media has declared that the candidate you support is intolerable and objectionable and blah blah blah.

We said the press crossed the line in real time.  We were warning that their actions were going to pollute polling.  We said that long before the election rolled around.  We said it because we saw polling and then we saw people as we traveled around the US speaking.  It was clear that Trump had far more support than the polls were indicating.  For a poll to work, the respondent needs to feel that they can answer honestly and that there will be no judgment against them for their answer.  The press destroyed any hope of that climate existing.

Our choice: more money for our families and communities, or trillions more wasted on regime change wars and the new cold war.

US House Rep Tulsi Gabbard, Iraq War veteran, is speaking to an important issue and it's one that many people can relate to.

It's also an issue that our press refuses to cover.  Look at the cost of the ongoing wars.  Grasp that the bill's not been paid.  It's a tab, the US government has set up a bar tab and it's open tab that's still running.  It gets bigger and bigger.

We can't throw all the dollars into war and still afford what is needed here in the US.

How does that issue not front page every newspaper?  How does it not lead every broadcast?

Global warming is real and it's a serious issue.  It's one that needs far more attention than it ever gets.

But spending our way into the poor house?  That's a domestic issue that gets no serious attention.

Find me the 'news' broadcast that opens with the cost of war on a daily basis or the newspaper that headlines the cost each day.

Each day, we are further in debt.  Each day, the bill gets higher.  The wars effect the entire globe, no question.  But we're talking about US choices on spending and how it impacts life here at home.  Trillions of dollars.  And it's not a story?

It should be the lead story every day.

The number should prompt articles about how X has been cut from national parks or from WIC or from this or from that.  The number should prompt articles about how the local highway/bridge/library whatever needs repairs but we won't spend the thousands or so needed on that because we're too busy spending millions each day on these wars.

Paul Krugman's calls himself an economist.  I wonder does he have a speech impediment?  Because it seems like he's trying to call himself an embarrassment -- and I think many of us could agree with him on that.  The paper has allowed him to write about everything except what he was hired to write about -- the only thing he had any expertise on.  Even he, 'the economist,' isn't doing regular columns explaining to the American people the true financial costs of these wars and how this cost impacts everything else we could have but can't afford.

Meanwhile, Margaret Griffis (ANTIWAR.COM) notes the following about yesterday's violence, "Relatives of a young man shot to death at his farm in Rabango, abutting the Turkish border, say that the shots were fired across the border by Turkish security forces. The man traveled with two friends to the farmland that the three of them own, when they came under fire. They may have been mistaken for smugglers or Kurdish guerrillas."  Shooting across a fence, basically, they can't tell the difference between civilians and terrorists but the same Turkish military bombs Kurdistan from war planes on high and can tell the difference?  No.  The slaughter needs to stop and Turkey needs to respect the sovereignty of Iraq.

Let's close with Sarah Abdallah schooling Weight Gain McCain.

John McCain voted for the Iraq War that killed a million human beings and gave rise to ISIS. Julian Assange exposed US war crimes in and elsewhere. Guess who’s going to rot in hell? 🤗

What happened to Meghan's ethics?  I believe she ate them.

The following sites updated: