CSotD: Strange Choices

We’ll lead off with a strange choice of little current relevance, just to kind of ease into the grimmer ones. It wasn’t far into the Vintage Ben Bolt (KFS) story arc that I began to fear that he’d end up adopting this plucky little guttersnipe, but I hoped it wouldn’t happen.

Big Ben Bolt launched in 1950 and ran through 1978, and this arc was about halfway through, in 1963. Adding a kid to a storyline is a sign of desperation, but the hopeful part is that little Andy will be living with Ben’s kinfolk, who only appear occasionally, so maybe he won’t gum up the series too much.

Though I wouldn’t mind if he chirped “Teacher says every time the bell rings, a boxer gets punched in the face!”

Juxtaposition of the Day

Daniel Boris

Joy of Tech

Daniel Boris leapt on the news that Elon has reinstated lunatic liar Alex Jones to Twitter, while I suspect that Joy of Tech was simply making a timely comment that gained significant muscle because of the bizarre decision.

I blurred a word in Joy of Tech because, while I agree with the assessment, we try to maintain a little class around here. But it’s a lovely satire of the Day the Earth Stood Still and I wish Michael Rennie would land soon because we’re sure not doing anything to apply the brakes ourselves.

As noted in that linked article:

Also appearing was Vivek Ramaswamy, who has endorsed the Great Replacement Theory, apparently having never read Kipling.

If there were any doubts about Musk’s taste, politics or sanity, the staging of a rally of fascist liars and fabulists should put them to rest. He claims to have had two million viewers, and it’s true that he has a hearty stable of righwing loonies following him, but I suspect they are greatly outnumbered by the bots who chime in with praise every time he posts.

He also attracts a chorus of critics like Shannon Watts, an activist who responded intelligently but was spitting into the wind. She’s right that Jones has been legally found not to have exercised “free speech” but to have defamed and libeled.

She might as well have explained it to her dog.

Meanwhile, Twitter — which I no longer post on but continue to monitor professionally — may have tilted this morning from the shift of people who have finally bailed out and begun turning up on Threads, Bluesky and Instagram.

They say a man is known by the company he keeps, and Musk put together a lineup of misogynists, liars, traitors and racists for his little on-line confab. It leaves little doubt about who he is and what he stands for.

Juxtaposition of the Whatabouts

Kal Kallaugher

Dave Whamond

It’s hard to disagree with the assessment that, if Hunter’s last name were not “Biden,” he wouldn’t be facing felony charges. He has paid the missing taxes and the business of not disclosing his drug use when he bought a gun is chickenfeed: Both situations are often resolved either as misdemeanors or by deferred prosecution.

However, it’s also hard to disagree with the assessment that the initial plea bargain did not pass the whiff test, and seems to have rested in too large a part on who he was rather than on what he did.

Still, as Kal suggests and Whamond states outright, it’s hardly the only situation in which who someone is has taken precedence over what they did, and there sure seems to be a lot of stones being thrown from the direction of glass houses.

Whataboutism is a cheesy argument, but it’s perfectly valid to call for consistency, and to insist that there ought not to be one set of rules for rich folks and another set for the rest of us.

If nothing else, all the nepo babies who deserve a spanking should get one.

Dana Summers (Tribune) suggests that Joe Biden is covered with coal dust from Hunter’s dealings, though repeated investigations by the Republicans have failed to turn up a single example of anything tying the President to his son’s dubious business.


That is, it’s not as if Biden staged a fake news conference in which he presented folders full of apparently blank papers which he claimed laid out the plan to make sure he didn’t profit from his position as president by turning over his business dealings to his children, two of whom had official positions on his White House staff.

There are times at which “What about?” is not only a fair question but a necessary one, even if it only increases the number of defendants rather than absolving anyone.

Juxtaposition of the Day — Foreign Edition

Ed Hall

Mike Lester — AMS

It used to be said that our disagreements over foreign policy ended at the water’s edge, but that was before the Second Civil War started. Today, we’ve got a major political party more aligned with Moscow than Washington and openly advocating that we abandon Ukraine to Putin’s loving arms.

Hall’s metaphors are a little clumsy. He’s right, of course, that Hamas is using hostages as at least a shield if not as bargaining chips, but the connection between the GOP’s withholding of aid and Russia’s increasing attacks on Ukraine doesn’t quite fit the “hostage” pattern he’s established.

It’s a case of “I know what you mean, but …”

However, Lester also strains to make his point, and he seems more off-target. It’s quite a stretch to think that Biden is intent on defending Ukraine in order to distract the country from the Freedom Caucus’s relentless investigations.

For one thing, we’ve been opposing Russian aggression longer than that, and, for another, Biden seems to have been an open book anyway, and the Caucus has repeatedly discovered things that have perfectly sensible and relatively innocent explanations.

Meanwhile, it is obvious that Vladimir Putin wants to rebuild the old Soviet Union. He won’t be satisfied with a few eastern provinces of Ukraine and he won’t stop by absorbing the whole nation.

Ask Georgia. Ask Belarus. Not the puppet government in Minsk, but the shadow government overseas.

Or read a little history. “America First” has a long tradition, as Dr. Seuss noted some years ago.

Joe Heller hasn’t forgotten how the old familiar story turns out.

2 thoughts on “CSotD: Strange Choices

  1. “She might as well have explained it to her dog.” Well, one son-of-a-b***h might be a place to start.

  2. I respect TDTESS as much as anybody, but in truth we’d all be better off if we shipped Elon to Mars and left him there.

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