20 Years of Rude Punditry: The AMA Part of It

If yesterday marked the 20th anniversary of the debut of this here blog (or "newsletter," if you wanna sound classy), today marks the 20th of the first proper post, which, interestingly, is more like a series of tweets (although I was here before Twitterx. Actually, now that I think about it, I was here before YouTube, before Facebook, hell, before Breitbart). It was a crude version of the crudeness to follow.

Lemme get the money part of things out of the way here. One of the big changes in the last few years is the ability to actually make some scratch on this stuff without allowing advertisers to put bullshit on your website. I do Patreon (for now), and if you subscribe there, you get extra posts, occasional uncensored versions of the videos I've been doing for the Political Voices Network, and other stuff. I'm a bit more personal there, and I do some deep dives into fascist websites and other shit. If you're gonna pay, I'm gonna work for it. 

You can do it at the $1, $3, $5, or $10 levels or even $100 if you're rich and insane (or extraordinarily kind - it's a fine line). And you can pay it monthly or annually. One more extra: a great community of readers who comment regularly on the posts, sometimes offering great takes, sometimes sanely disagreeing. It's way more fun than I thought it would be.

And I should mention that the old Donation button through PayPal is still up here if you just wanna toss a couple of shekels in the bucket and be on your way. 

Okay, let's go to the fun stuff. I asked on Twitterx and Threads and BlueSky for questions, and, damn, nice job everyone. I said AMA, and, goddamn, now I better answer. So away we go:

Since a bunch of you are Steph heads, you asked how I got involved with Ms. Stephanie Miller and her delicious, daily radio orgy. Kind of simple really: In the summer of 2009, I heard she was reading my posts on the air, so I got in touch and said, "Well, shit, if you're using my stuff, why not have me on?" I had to make all kinds of promises to be FCC compliant (which I've only fucked up twice in over 14 years). We discovered on the first time I appeared that the sexual tension between Steph and me was so intense that I've heard listeners spontaneously orgasmed, which made things extra awkward if they were already at work. Thus a long-term relationship was born. (Sincere note: Steph, Chris, Jody, Travis, Sean, and everyone I've met through the show are just terrific and smart people.)

Several of you wanna know what my employer, the City University of New York, thinks about me doing this gig. That's a good question, considering how many professors have gotten in trouble for shit they say on blogs, social media, or comment threads. But I'm a lucky motherfucker: a whole lot of my higher-ups are regular readers. When I did my first show back in 2005, the Provost congratulated me. I got tenure, in part, from the positive reaction to that show. I have a couple of rules: I don't shit where I eat (which means that if I have an issue at my daytime job, I keep it at my daytime job). I don't bring it into the classroom unless it's relevant (like if I teach writing solo shows, yeah, I'm gonna fuckin' talk about my solo shows). If a student has googled me and asks, I'll tell them. In fact, if anyone wants to talk politics because they know I do this, I'm more than happy to get into it.

Every now and then, some fucknut will contact the college president or dean or someone and say that I'm immoral or I'm trying to pervert minds or just that I'm an asshole, citing something I wrote that upset them. When I wrote something against Catholicism, this guy went on the warpath to say I'm bigoted and needed to be fired. The Provost called me and said, "What's this about?" I explained and it was done. It's good to have a strong union. It's good to work for people who actually think professors are allowed to have opinions. 

Here's an interesting question: "Who is the absolute worst person you’ve ever written about?" It might be recency bias, but I truly think it's Donald Trump. I mean, it's tempting to say Karl Rove, who was the architect of so much of our path to political damnation. I could easily say George W. Bush, who bumblefucked his way through crisis after crisis, doing the bidding of truly evil fucks, like Dick Cheney (also in the top five). But Trump has done so much damage to the American psyche, contorting the febrile brains of millions of people into releasing their racist, hateful ids and pushing them to committing or contemplating mass violence. Trump's the most dangerous motherfucker of all the motherfuckers because he's not seen as a politician. He's seen as a prophet, and he knows it, so he's gonna manipulate the idiot hordes to give him their cash and do his vile bidding until he's locked away or dead.

Someone asked if there are any posts where I might have gone too far. Nah. I regret being wrong sometimes. And there are a couple of posts that I think are extravagantly dark. There's the one where Donald Rumsfeld keeps a drawer of the mummified dicks of dead soldiers. Or the one where Dick Cheney masturbated at Auschwitz. More recently, there's the one where Tucker Carlson does autoerotic asphyxiation to images of the war in Ukraine. I guess one I might take back is where I was trying for parody with the "Modest Proposal" title, but it didn't come across as parody and it just sounds like I want Donald Trump to kill himself. But if I started deleting ones where I thought the jokes didn't work, I'd be here for days. 

I'll end here by bringing up something I bet a lot of you forgot about or never knew. When I went to the Bonnaroo Music Festival for a few years, I wrote a series of fictional posts about the event turning into a zombie apocalypse or environmental horror movie. Rude at Bonnaroo was a combination of exhaustion, drugs, and sun madness, and it's about as weird as my brain gets, and, yet, there's still a pretty good zombie story in there. Dive in and enjoy.

More tomorrow to round this celebration out.


20 Years of Rude Punditry: What the Hell Did I Do With My Life?

So here we are, all together again, old friends who once had repeated orgies together, copious nights of copulation under the influence of everything from pure, uncut horniness to delicious-feeling molly (which we used to call Ecstasy which we used to call X), balling madly against the madness of the political realm around us that degraded us and elevated us in unequal measure. Now, in this new era we're damned to live through, we look at each other across the table in this bar with a bit of shame, a bit of regret, and more than a bit of lingering longing. 

Twenty years ago, I started this goddamned blog as an outlet for a rage that I was feeling about the crimes of the Bush administration. As conservatives indulged in a new McCarthyism, this time based on how much you worshipped the war machine and the bullshit anti-terrorist laws. If you didn't sufficiently show deference to authoritarian and imperial impulses, you were labeled an enemy. Fuck that, I thought. And fuck the people involved. 

It was also a time where the writing side of the political and critical internet was reaching its full potential, a democratization of voices who would have never had the chance to be heard by an elitist media. I discovered people like Josh Marshall, Glenn Greenwald (yeah, I know, but he was something early on), Lindsey Beyerstein, Marcy Wheeler, Shark Fu, all the original Daily Kos writers like Steve Gilliard and Billmon, Atrios, and more. I was reading amazingly irreverent, hysterical, and insightful websites like Fafblog, The Onion, and Dumbass and the Fag (which you can't find anywhere but was a hilariously savage movie review blog and don't get mad at me - I didn't name it). Some of those writers are dead online and in real life, some went mainstream, some plug away like me. 

I've told this story before, but I was inspired to finally jump into all this because of how Al Franken was being excoriated on the right for his book Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them. He was being accused of "lowering political discourse," and when I read his book I thought, "Well, that's a funny and occasionally crude attack on conservatism." As far as its discourse, it wasn't anything worse than what Rush Limbaugh had been doing for years ("Radio abortions," anyone?). 

In the 1990s, I had written a Limbaugh parody, "The Rich Flemball Show," for a radio drama program I produced in Knoxville, Tennessee (brag: Radio Free Theatre was the top show on the college station, which had a big audience). I also had written political scripts, like one where pre-inferno Branch Davidians took over the station and forced us to perform a play in rhymed couplets about Bill and Hillary Clinton giving the country over to David Koresh (yeah, drugs are a helluva drug). I could go on, but suffice to say that I had been writing this kind of shit for a long time. 

So I started this because I thought, regarding Franken's book, "You think that's lowering political discourse? I'll show you lowering political discourse." And away we went

In 2003, it was the Wild West out here in what I called "Blogsylvania." I staked out a claim as that asshole writing pornographic, scatological imagery as political analysis. And there really wasn't anyone doing things in the way I was: I simply wanted to talk to readers like we were hanging out in a bar, a couple of drinks in, trying to make each other understand where we're coming from. If it involved lots of ass fucking (consensual and non-consensual), well, that's how I fuckin' talked.

I'm not exaggerating when I say that, for a couple of years, if you googled the words "motherfucker," "cocksucker," or "cunt," this blog was in the top ten suggested websites. I even made it to number one a couple of times on two of those words. And, yes, I am proud of that, although I feel bad for the people googling, "cocksucker" and clicking on my blog, only to read about Karl Rove getting head from an imprisoned leather slave. Although I'd like to think you could occasionally masturbate to my writing. 

The reason why the first 15 years or so are in third person (as in "The Rude Pundit believes cocaine gives him superpowers") is that I had thought of writing it like I was Boswell and the Rude Pundit was my Samuel Johnson. Sure, I was taking a lot from my own life, but I was playing with a form (one that Wonkette would also use a few months later). I gave it up during the Trump administration because it seemed insincere, like I was lying to you, and kind of douchey (although it still works for Wonkette). And the reason I'm "Rude One" as the signed name is because this was supposed to be a group blog, with "Rude Two," etc. Except everyone except Two bailed quickly and then Two moved on. But it worked, even if it wasn't the play on words I had meant it to be.

I've been here a long fucking time. I've written nearly five thousand posts, well over 2 million words. I've gotten a book with two editions out of it. A few successful stage shows. An audio version of one of those shows. Media appearances, with occasional surfacings in the mainstream. A podcast or two. A Patreon where those who can pay a little bit for extra rude bits.

And I've had amazing readers come and go through the years (as well as some absolute twatmites), with a whole lot of you weirdly reading this filth for way too long. I'm shocked and grateful as the first time I looked at my readership and saw 10 people had clicked on me. The day I saw I had 1000 readers was like a blow-out-the-back-walls orgasm. Shit, there have been over 32 million clicks, and I'm sure at least a couple stayed and read a thing or two. I still get over 100k a month, which isn't bad now that I just post once a week. Crazy. Really fucking crazy. I can never be grateful enough.

I asked if you wanted to know anything, and I've gotten a fuckton of questions on Twitter, Threads, and Bluesky, and I'll try to answer them all over the next couple of days. Feel free to ask more. 

One that I've gotten more than any other are what are my favorite posts. There are way too fucking many to limit it to 5 or 10. So I'll give you a few from the first couple of years today. 

The one on Reagan's death. It was inspired by Hunter S. Thompson's savage takedown of Richard Nixon, and I felt like Reagan was the founding supervillain of my life, and I hated seeing him get lionized like he was anything other than the planter of our seeds of civil destruction.

The one on Bush's re-election. Sometimes, I try for something different. I've always said that "rudeness" isn't just a well-crafted use of the work "cockknob." No, sometimes you have to express degradation in a way that is more artful. Plus, I love quoting John Dos Passos.

The one where I visited New Orleans shortly after Hurricane Katrina. This was as personal as shit gets. The Bush administration's inaction and years of neglect had fucked over some of the most vulnerable people in places where I lived and love. It still staggers me to think about that visit.

The one where Karl Rove's leather slave escapes. Karl Rove's leather slave, who was held in a basment in the White House, comes up all the time for old time readers, like he's a character on a show that left way too early. I'm still not gonna explain the metaphor (even though I think it's pretty obvious). I kept waiting to set him free, and when the Democrats overwhelmingly took back Congress in 2006, it seemed ideal. 

The first one where 9/11 is a person. Because personifying use and abuse of that date just seemed poignant to me. 

Let me answer one more question today: I only post once a week here (and once a week over on Patreon, hint, hint) because of Twitter or X or whatever. As that hellsite demanded more time, I had to make some strategic choices since I have my other career as a professor. But it's interesting: the rise of Substack "newsletters" (which, fuck you, are blogs) has drawn interest back to longer pieces. So we'll see. I've been courted to head over there. I'm thinking about it.

Ok. This self-indulgent shit has gone on long enough. We can toss back some whiskeys at the bar. We can head back to my place after for crazed sheet-rolling after we argue about whether I've gone soft or too cynical or too complacent. And we can get up tomorrow and I'll talk about it some more. 


John Fetterman's Shorts and Hoodie Are Not the Real Threats to Civility

In the discourse around what hoodie and shorts aficionado Senator John Fetterman, a Pennsylvania Democrat, wears on the floor of the Senate, one theme comes out again and again: we used to expect better from our elected officials. It's led normally not-entirely nutzoid writers to opine stupidly. Kathleen Parker (motto: "Three cosmos to the right of Maureen Dowd") writes in her Washington Post "column" (if by "column," you mean, "A train wreck that's been allowed to just sit there so long that the corpses stink"),  "As little as I have loved Republicans the past few years, coinciding with the rise of our own little autocrat, at least Donald Trump knows how to dress." 

As gut-churningly galling as that sentence is, she follows it with "Clothes might not make the man or woman, but they do tell us a great deal about them." Do they, Kathleen Parker? What did Trump's ill-fitting, cheap-ass suits and ties-down-to-his-dick tell us about him? Then it gets even more fucking childish as she talks about how her father complained about how people used to dress nicely everywhere, and, heavens to Betsy, at Westminster Cathedral, she saw some woman dressed like "she was taking a quick break from the trade" (which I think means like a prostitute). Keep it classy, Kath.

Well, if we're gonna talk about how shit used to be, let's expand beyond clothing. I remember when it would have been a big fucking deal when a former president who is the current frontrunner for the GOP nomination in 2024 stated that he believed that the Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff should be executed for treason. That's the message that Donald Trump sent out over Truth Toilet this week, no doubt while dressed impeccably over his diaper and Spanx, in response to an Atlantic article on Gen. Mark Milley, who is stepping down as Chair of the Joint Chiefs. In it, Milley says that he told his Chinese counterparts not to worry about the bluster coming from Trump, who really was the Commander-in-Chief of the entire military, in order to prevent a stupid war. For Trump and others, that was treasonous, while for most of us normal human beings, it was cold assurance that we wouldn't fight this time just so that a man-baby could see things go "boom." 

And, by the way, I remember when it would have been a big fucking deal if we learned the frontrunner for a party's nomination for president shit all over a wounded veteran or disparaged an entire US territory as not being part of the US, both of which are also in the article.

But we're apparently now numb to this kind of umbrage, this flouting of convention, this disrespect to tradition. We're supposed to dismiss it as more Trumpian bluster and pretend it's what we're putting up with until he loses next year. How did that work out in 2016? How did that work out when we were told he would just fume for a bit about losing the 2020 election and then accept his loss? Used to be the media would have relentlessly hounded Trump and his vile supporters to see if they really believed a decorated, celebrated four-star general should face the firing squad. It would have been a dividing line between sane and insane. Instead, it's just Tuesday. And this could go for a thousand other attacks on civility, decorum, and decency from Trump.

You see, when you start mouthing off about all the traditions that Sen. Fetterman is stepping on, you open yourself up for questioning about all the other things we've decided are normal now. Marjorie Taylor Greene, who, believe it or not, is a member of Congress despite, to all appearances, being a meth-addicted simian of some kind, called President Biden an "old fart" in response to a Biden tweet. That was on her official congressional account, not her personal one. She also showed a photo that included the genitals of the president's son in a real congressional hearing. What was so important to the safety and prosperity of the United States that Hunter Biden's pretty decent penis needed to be seen by the world and become part of the congressional record and thus archived forever so alien archeologists digging through the Atlantis-like ruins of a sunken Washington, DC can find it and think, "This not-bad penis must have ended it all"? Nothing. Not a goddamned thing. 

Every fucking day we get another indecency from the GOP, another threat of a shutdown or of shooting migrants seeking asylum or of arresting women trying to cross from their brutally cruel state to another in order to get an abortion so they don't die or of George Santos being there. Every fucking day they break all the guardrails of civility and humanity, and then they want us to get angry because John Fetterman doesn't like wearing suits and Chuck Schumer changed an unofficial dress code to allow him not to for quick votes.

Just fuck off. This is another thing that conservatives with one or two rational cells left believe they can control while the out-of-control conservative animals run around thrusting their flag-colored asses in our faces, hooting and happy that they can shut shit down, and telling us that's patriotism. Some on these assholes bitched about Ukrainian President Zelensky wearing his combat-ready outfit to speak to the Senate this week. It's all just an excuse to degrade something that threatens them.

There's one criticism of Fetterman that I think is quaint in its old school hysteria. Barking mad Louisiana Rep. Clay Higgins, who looks like a thumb and dresses like he's running a the shittiest brothel in Deadwood, said that Fetterman is "a communist and he’s demonstrating his allegiance to Marxist principles by wearing 'workers clothes.'" I love that idea. Fetterman should wear a Che Guevara hoodie next time.


MAGAism Was Always Terrorism

In a forthcoming book by McKay Coppins, excerpted in The Atlantic, retiring Senator Mitt Romney, who, one should never forget, is an entirely shitty human being and a blithering dickhead, pointed out something that should have been patently obvious. He said that prior to January 6, 2021, "elected Republicans feared a political backlash from their base. But after January 6, a new, more existential brand of cowardice had emerged. One Republican congressman confided to Romney that he wanted to vote for Trump’s second impeachment, but chose not to out of fear for his family’s safety." 

And "Later, during the Senate trial, Romney heard the same calculation while talking with a small group of Republican colleagues. When one senator, a member of leadership, said he was leaning toward voting to convict, the others urged him to reconsider. You can’t do that, Romney recalled someone saying. Think of your personal safety, said another. Think of your children. The senator eventually decided they were right." They're not talking about crazed leftists going all Bolshevik on their asses. It's the fucking MAGA cretins who are murdery. They're the ones, primarily, who call in the death threats and bomb threats and show up at the houses of Democrats, armed to the tits with guns and ammo because open carry.

Romney himself pays, he claims, $5000 a day in security to prevent those same cretins from 2nd Amendmenting him or his family. And Romney's rich, so he can afford that $150k a month. I don't think I'm taking a particularly brave stand in declaring that it's bullshit that politicians of any persuasion should have to deal with some asshole telling them where their children live and how they're going to be murdered. 

Put this in context: According to Romney (and others), the reason that Donald Trump was not removed from office is because Republicans were scared of the very white people they declare are the heart and soul of the country, the "real Americans," if you will. They were afraid that these "patriots," as more than one obsequious jellyfish has called them, will hang them or gun their children down in vengeance. The terrorists were protecting their terrorist leader. Think of how many decisions have been made because of this fear.

What's most idiotic here is the way that people are acting shocked about this "revelation." Hell, I've been writing about it since at least 2017. This isn't a revelation. It's a confirmation. What we should be saying is how this is pure cowardice, an excuse to make an easy choice to do nothing. The patriotic act would have been for Republicans to say, "Fuck you, you fucking creeps. He's guilty and an asshole. Fuck him and fuck you again." The representatives who did this likely would have lost re-election (like Liz Cheney) because of the MAGA animals, but at the very least you could have said you did the right fucking thing and you didn't cower while crazy motherfuckers wrecked the joint. Except, of course, for the terrorists in Congress who want to see the whole joint crumble. (And let's be clear: if you were happy to go along with things like the bullshit wall and the bullshit Muslim ban and other Trumpian bullshit, you empowered him and his cretins.)

Trump is counting on his terrorists to fuck up any chance of a genuine trial occurring. In his motion requesting that the judge in DC get Trump to shut the fuck up sometimes, Special Counsel Jack Smith (which, despite what Trump says, is his real name) is very clear about the terrorism that Trump has already caused. When it came to Trump lying about election interference, "the defendant engendered widespread mistrust in the administration of the election, and the individuals whom he targeted were subject to threats and harassment...The defendant knows that when he publicly attacks individuals and institutions, he inspires others to perpetrate threats and harassment against his targets." Smith says that witnesses and prosecutors in the case are all now subject to threats because of how Trump is deliberately degrading them. He is also concerned that the threat of being a target of harassment and possible violence by the MAGA terrorists will taint the jury pool. So, for fuck's sake, make this orange shit lump close his asshole mouth.

This is how we live now, and most of us pretend we don't. We live in a time where a large terrorist movement, with just a few active but with millions of supporters, can control how the country is run. And if we don't stop it by imprisoning its leader and his lieutenants, then the terrorists are not going to stop.


Democrats Are Bitch-Slapping Republicans and It Feels So Good

I know we like to insist that Democrats are generally milquetoast and rational to a fault when they respond to the wrongs that are done to them. When Sen. Dick Durbin can praise the absolutely bullshit blue slip rule, which is not a requirement on what underwear Ted Cruz has to wear but is instead a way that a single senator can shitcan a judicial nominee and has been ludicrously abused by Republicans, we're into a realm where Democrats often fight with one hand tied behind their back and one foot nailed to the ground.

But this week, we've had a couple of examples of Democrats fucking done with GOP bullshit. They take off the gloves and just beat the shit out of very specific Republicans while, at the same time, implicating the entirety of the party. They are out of fucks, and it's glorious to see.

First, Fulton County Fani Willis delivered an all-time forced fisting of House Judiciary Chair Jim "I've Already Tried Bleaching the Yellowed Sweat Stains Out of My Shirt's Armpits" Jordan yesterday. Jordan had sent Willis a letter accusing her and her office of all kinds of fuckery with its indictments of Donald Trump and his lickspittles and lawyers for attempting to dick over the people of Georgia. Jordan wrote, "Your indictment and prosecution implicate substantial federal interests, and the circumstances surrounding your actions raise serious concerns about whether they are politically motivated." The letter tried to sound all respectable and legalistic as it basically said that Willis just wanted to make money and get reelected off the case and that, oh, sure, the federal government should conduct oversight. 

It also asked that Willis produce a shit-ton of documents for the committee, including "All documents and communications between or among the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office and DOJ and its components, including but not limited to the Office of Special Counsel Jack Smith, referring or relating to your office’s investigation of President Donald Trump or any of the other eighteen individuals against whom charges were brought in the indictment discussed above." 

The deadline for those documents was yesterday. Instead, Willis sent Jordan a beatdown

From the beginning, Willis accuses Jordan of, basically, obstruction of justice: "[The letter's] obvious purpose is to obstruct a Georgia criminal proceeding and to advance outrageous partisan misrepresentations." And then it goes on for 9 pages about what a fucking asshole Jim Jordan is. It's Willis dog-walking Jordan around and showing him all of his failures and stupidity and rubbing his nose in it. She calls him out on issues of federalism, on separation of powers, and more, smacking him with "Your public statements and your letter itself make clear that you lack any legitimate legislative purpose for that inquiry: your job description as a legislator does not include criminal law enforcement, nor does it include supervising a specific criminal trial because you believe that doing so will promote your partisan political objectives." Goddamn, that's how you call the devil "the devil."

But then she gets to directly responding to some of the things that Jordan alleges, and that's when she starts repeatedly kicking him in his tiny balls from behind, making sure he feels that in his taint. Shit gets personal.

"Chairman Jordan, I tell people often 'deal with reality or reality will deal with you.' It is time that you deal with some basic realities," she writes, and, man, as someone who has long said that the difference between Democrats and Republicans is how much they act on things within reality, it's practically porn to me. "Face this reality, Chairman Jordan," she continues, "the select group of defendants who you fret over in my jurisdiction are like every other defendant, entitled to no worse or better treatment than any other American citizen." She fuckin' bold-faced and italicized that, as she did with "Here is another reality you must face: Those who wish to avoid felony charges in Fulton County, Georgia — including violations of Georgia RICO law — should not commit felonies in Fulton County, Georgia." That's pretty much the font equivalent of shoving it up his ass so far that she could squeeze his heart.

Willis makes quick business of the utter nonsense that whether or not Trump is running for president has any bearing on his prosecution. Basically, she writes, "Yeah, fuck that noise." Honestly, it's like she's getting more and more geared up as she goes. She writes, "Your letter makes clear that you lack a basic understanding of the law, its practice, and the ethical obligations of attorneys generally and prosecutors specifically" before explaining the role of a prosecutor. She goes through other ways in which Jordan is a goddamn tool, including specifying how her office uses federal funding on rape cases. And tell me you don't feel a tingle in your nethers when you read, "For a more thorough understanding of Georgia’s RICO statute, its application and similar laws in other states, I encourage you to read 'RICO State-by-State.' As a non-member of the bar, you can purchase a copy for two hundred forty-nine dollars [$249]." Jordan never even took the bar exam after law school, the fuckin' loser.

She saves the biggest middle finger for the end. The letter concludes with Willis making suggestions on what Congress could be doing, which is somewhere between "oh, just fuck off forever, you sad rape enabler" and "go fuck yourself if you're not gonna make yourself even minimally useful." She asks for more federal funding for prosecutors and testing rape kits and programs for young offenders and crime labs. That's all sensible, as is her final suggestion: "As it seems you have a personal interest in the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office, you should consider directing the USDOJ to investigate the racist threats that have come to my staff and me because of this investigation. For your information, I am attaching ten examples of threats this office has received." 

Then she brings it all home by showing just how sick of this shit she is: "I am providing these examples to give you a window into what has happened to my staff and me as I keep the promise of my oath to the United States and Georgia Constitutions and do not allow myself to be bullied and threatened by Members of Congress, local elected officials, or others who believe lady justice should not be blind and that America has different laws for different citizens." It's gotta suck for Jordan that she's not only not afraid, but she's willing to utterly, publicly decimate him. 

It's just gonna be embarrassing when Jordan decides to escalate this and goes on Jesse Watters's nightly hour of conspiracy theories and pure lies or wherever to perspire and spit about Willis. Willis won't care. She's gonna pants all these motherfuckers and point out how tiny their dicks are.

One more Democrat worth mentioning: Sen. John Fetterman, a sumbitch who has been through hell physically and emotionally and lost his bag of fucks a long time ago, was asked by reporters about Republicans threatening to impeach President Biden. Mincing no words, Fetterman said, "Go ahead and do it, I dare you, If you're gonna keep threatening it, then go ahead, just do it...It would just be like a big circlejerk on the fringe right. Your man has what, three or four indictments now? Sometimes you just gotta, you know, call their bullshit."

Fetterman didn't hold back when asked about a possible indictment for Hunter Biden, saying, "They have a fetish for Hunter Biden. And if they really want to keep going at it, that's up to them, but he's not... on the ballot."

Finally, Fetterman was asked about a rail safety bill that he was supposed to be working on with Republican Senator J.D. "Meemaw wouldn't recognize me" Vance. The Pennsylvania senator said that Vance was too busy working on a bill to ban mask mandates and was "fixated...on silly performance art" that will never pass instead of doing something that might actually help people.

Can we please have more bitch-slappings like this? Can we get it on promoting how Democrats fucking saved the US economy and made it stronger? Can we get it on immigration and trans rights and more? Just shove Republicans against the wall, rhetorically, and bitch-slap them back and forth. Rhetorically. Of course.


A Poem for the Laborers

by Jordan Jace

I want to write poems for construction workers and dreamers
For revolutionaries
For deadbeats and those on the low
I never want to ask please fix us all
I want for us to want
to patch every heart
and pave every road
and destroy every system
that has ever left us
broken. I want to sing
like frank ocean, like wonder
like sonder, like mereba, like the sea
I want to recite the line
Took the wretched out the earth
Called it baby fanon,
I want to call someone baby.
I want to stop smoking because I want to live,
I can only love my comrades if I live,
and I want to clean my room,
I want to clean my room every week
and make my bed and put peppermint in my hair
to stop needing my inhalers
and to inhale solidarity, and to eat the rich,
I want to eat the rich, to cancel the rents,
to know my neighbors
and to know my neighbors
are safe. I want to move like water, to move
from unity to struggle to unity,
to have no perfect world we haven’t fought for. 


They're Killing New College Because They Can

The American right always has some fake intellectual to give cover to the destructive, hateful things it believes. They always find someone who gives the racist or xenophobic or homophobic fuckery an imprimatur of rationality. And then everyone on the right will celebrate that fake intellectual and his (and it's almost always "his") popularity will soar to the point that even those not swimming in the political effluvia we are all damned to drown in will come to believe what the fake intellectual is saying. Then the fake shit the fake intellectual says will become seen as a valid point of view instead of utter garbage foisted on us by a bulldozer shoving bullshit from one place to another without burying it. For years, for instance, we have had to hear from the bare handful of "scientists" who claim climate change isn't "real" when the overwhelming, peer-reviewed, and incredibly well-researched truth is...well, fuck, just watch the Weather Channel for ten minutes. 

Christopher Rufo is another one of those conservative snake oil hawkers gathering up the rubes to watch his snappy patter. He's a fascist ideologue who doesn't actually know shit about the topics he writes about, but because his perspective aids and abets what the savages in the GOP want to do to public education, they cheer him as authentic when he's fake. And dumb. Just so fucking dumb. He's never worked at a college or university until Florida governor and soon-to-be ex-presidential candidate Ron DeSantis appointed him to the board of trustees of New College in Sarasota. Yet he's treated as an expert on the purpose and function of higher education. It's not just that he opposes majors and courses that have been around for decades, like gender studies, queer studies, and African American studies (unless taught in an anodyne, useless way). That's typical of anti-progressive education criticism. No, it's what he believes is the place and function of a public university in the larger governmental ecosystem that makes him more dangerous than your average cranky dumbass screaming about critical race theory (prompted mostly by Rufo): the university is merely an extension of government and thus subject to total government control, First Amendment be damned.

Here's what Rufo said recently on Twixter: "Public universities are not a 'free marketplace of ideas'; they are a government-run cartel with control over 75 percent of the higher education market. They are governed by the laws of the republic, not the laws of supply and demand. Ultimately, the voters decide. Left-wing ideologues spent the past fifty years hijacking the public universities and transforming them into vehicles of partisan activism, not centers of scholarship and knowledge. They want politics? Let them have politics. There is no constitutional right to gender studies departments in public universities. The public gets to decide the mission and priorities of the public institutions—otherwise, it's bureaucratic tyranny."

Lemme just give you the biggest idiocies in this. First, as with most things, universities are funded by many sources, not just the "government." Everything is governed by "the laws of the republic," even capitalism. The "public" when it comes to "public universities" includes the students, virtually all of whom are of voting age, and their say matters, too. And as far as a "free marketplace of ideas," yeah, that's the purpose of a university. Otherwise, it's just a pure propaganda outlet. What is a greater demonstration of a dedication to free speech than to let adults teach and learn ideas that might challenge political dogma? No one is forcing them post-college to have to believe what they learned in any of their courses.

The New College of Florida is a test case for Rufo and his acolytes, as well as the anti-progressive forces who believe that most every university is just a training ground for communist takeover of the United States, a notion that's so fucking wrongheaded, considering half of students major in Business, Health, Engineering, Biology, and Computer/Information Science, that it should be laughed out of the discourse. The New College trustees appointed by future Senate candidate DeSantis were more or less tasked with destroying a small liberal arts college just to show they could, as a warning to every other institution. They fired the president and cut the office of diversity, equity, and inclusion. They got rid of gender-neutral signs on bathrooms. They put Bible verses on coffee cups at the school cafeteria. They shut the Pride dorm and eliminated a learning community for African studies. They have voted to eliminate gender studies as a department and major. They changed commencement, where students used to dress festively and extravagantly, forcing graduates to wear caps and gowns, and made Dr. Scott Atlas, a crackpot adviser to President Trump, the speaker. The students held an alternate graduation as a protest at the Sarasota Museum of Art. 

All these things, big and small, are just the start. They hired a new baseball coach and recruited athletes for a tiny school that doesn't even have a field, literally dumbing down the college to do it. They kicked seniors out of the best dorms to make rooms for athletes. Some students were forced to live in a hotel by the airport with a shitty shuttle schedule because it's an hour's walk from campus. They are, they promise, just getting started in tearing down a well-ranked college and remaking it in their image. A third of the faculty just fuckin' quit, leaving a ton of classes canceled, but leaving a ton of spots for the "right" kind of faculty to be hired. 

Rufo himself hasn't been coy about his goal. He wants to turn public universities into MAGA-humping boot camps for future fascists of America. And he's upset that New College had more women than men, saying it was a "social justice ghetto." By bringing in male athletes, Rufo says he wants to balance things sex-wise because it's good for the culture of the college. If your head just exploded as you screamed, "That's what affirmative action says, too, and you fuckers got that shitcanned!" well, you're joining me in that cry of frustration. 

If these conservatives were actually concerned with the free exchange of ideas, they could have endowed chairs for professors with their point of view. They could have established a Department of Conservative Studies or some such shit. They could have seen how that does. But, see, despite what Rufo tweeted up above there, supply and demand do matter. If a major has no students in it, it will cease existing. Colleges make those decisions all the time. But they're not after competing with progressive and liberal approaches to the, you know, liberal arts. They're not after teaching people to think critically about the world around them and about their leaders. They're after strict adherence to a Christian nationalist perspective on the world. Diversity is just another word for "Satan." 

But what do I know. I've only been a professor for roughly 30 years at public universities. Or maybe I might have more fucking insight than a greedy, attention-hungry dilettante with delusions of intellect.