by Lee, 01/02/2013, 11:59 PM

- I find there to be somewhat of a logical inconsistency in the outrage over a newspaper in New York identifying who has handgun permits in their area. We often hear that regardless of how accessible you make guns, people who want them will still have them. To a very limited extent, I agree with that. But if that’s true for guns, why isn’t it true for the information about gun permits? The gun permit information that the newspaper printed was publicly available. Anyone could look it up. They just made it more accessible. Does that additional accessibility make a difference? Particularly to an unstable person who might never have thought to look that up in the first place? For folks who are making that argument, the same logic applies to guns.

- I was going to write up something about how Rob McKenna’s acknowledgement that the GOP needs to work harder to appeal to women, minorities, and young people is an odd realization to have immediately after a career filled with supporting terrible policies for women, minorities, and young people, but after some Googling, I found that Cienna Madrid already wrote it for me.

- It’s cool to see how much interest there is in legal pot farming, but I do worry that some folks are a little too optimistic about how easy it’ll be to hit the jackpot as a pot farmer. The taxes dictated by the initiative are high enough that margins will still be relatively low, and unless the state greatly limits the amount of licenses it gives out, people with no experience growing quality product might have trouble competing with more experienced growers. My advice to people looking to make money from Washington’s newfound liberty is to avoid the supply chain for now and focus on opening places where marijuana users can congregate: an Amsterdam-style coffee shop with an outdoor smoking area, a movie theater with a rooftop patio, video arcade, bowling alley, concert hall, etc, etc.

39 Responses to “Odds and Ends”

1. Serial conservative spews:

Seems like an open thread to me.

Once upon a time Al Gore seemed like he might be compared with America’s greatest leaders. Now it seems, having sold Current TV for $100M (his share) in oil money, that he has more in common with, say, Heidi Fleiss.

That’s the Earth in the Balance dude, Nobel Peace Prize winner for “An Inconvenient Truth”, accepting a payoff from Qatar. Qatar didn’t earn that money growing dates and breeding camels.

Al Jazeera Seeks a U.S. Voice Where Gore Failed

It’s interesting that the NYT would headline that Gore ‘failed’. To me, seems he very much succeeded in suckering all of you libbies into believing that he was out for anything but his own self-interest. He did better than Arianna Huffington. I think she got $360M for something that a lot of people actually followed and avidly read. Gore’s group got $500M for an entity that drew 42,000 viewers on an average evening.

You made it happen, Libbies. Be proud of yourselves. A nation built on oil dollars now has a direct mouthpiece in America. They couldn’t have done it without you.

2. Serial conservative spews:

While on the subject of Al Gore, and since taxes on the wealthy were increased effective January 1, it should be noted that taxation affects the behavior even of patriots like Al:

Mr. Gore and his partners were eager to complete the deal by Dec. 31, lest it be subject to higher tax rates that took effect on Jan. 1, according to several people who insisted on anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly. But the deal was not signed until Wednesday.

Anybody read the just-signed bill to find out if Al Gore got cut some sort of break? The difference between the old cap gains rate and the new one on Gore’s windfall is a $15M tax bill vs. a $20M tax bill. There must have been some way for him to avoid paying that extra cash. We just don’t know about it, yet.

3. Happy Rabbit spews:

Cereal Cornflake: Glad that Al Gore’s cable tv was purchased by Al Jazeera. At least it has been kept out of the hands of another right wing mouth piece Fox faux news now that would have been a true failure for America :)

As Colin Powell told Al Gore: “Al Jazeera is the only cable news network that he watches”

Glad that Al Jazeera is on board, as America needs more diversity in the news media, not more right wing bs.

4. ArtFart spews:

” A nation built on oil dollars now has a direct mouthpiece in America.”

We already had that. Ever hear of Texas?

5. Serial conservative spews:

Interestingly, as a result of this purchase, the entity presently known as Current TV will end up being less anti-Israel once it’s controlled by Qatar rather than by the US far left.

Jus’ sayin’.

6. No Time for Fascists spews:

There are several themes to the sale of Current.

It’s hypocritical that people like Bob demand Free Speech when it’s coming from Fox News but recoil in horror when it’s coming from Al Jazeera.

7. No Time for Fascists spews:

There are several themes to the sale of Current.

How much of the decision falls on Al Gore, the public face of Current TV, and how much of the decision falls on Joel Hyatt?

…yesterday we learned that Current TV was sold to Al Jazeera, as the Qatar-owned news network seeks greater U.S. penetration. Why they think Current’s shitty channel access is attractive beats me. They must be getting a hell of a cheap price.

Problem with Current was that its CEO, Joel Hyatt (from Hyatt Legal Services, also known as the asshole who fired an attorney with AIDS which became the movie Philadelphia), never cared about building a popular network. You could see this with their lack of promotion, with their signing of shitty distribution deals that prohibited them from posting anything of real value on the web, and from their ridiculous firing of their marquee star—Keith Olbermann. A network that had built up an audience of around a quarter million (and growing as people found the hard-to-find network) suddenly saw its prime-time audience plummet to the 40K’s with replacement Elliot Spitzer.

8. Serial conservative spews:

@ 3

“Glad that Al Jazeera is on board, as America needs more diversity in the news media, not more right wing bs.”

I usually watch Al Jazeera English feed to monitor news when Israel’s moving on Gaza or going after Hezbollah in Lebanon. They were more up-to-date and if there was anti-Israel rhetoric by their newspeople, I didn’t notice it.

Apparently Al Jazeera beat out Glenn Beck, who was also looking to acquire it. I think that’s a good thing, as well. I’m not opposed to Al Jazeera acquiring it. To me the news is the irony of Al Gore cashing in with oil money after railing against oil interest for so much of his career. You can’t make this shit up.

9. Zotz sez: Happy New Year! (Fuck you, Bob.) spews:

@4: Close but Rupert Murdoch’s media octopus has a significant Saudi royal investor/investment.

Colin Powell is correct: If you’re really looking for straight news with actual international perspective (instead of the “exceptional” nativist thumbsucking that is the American MSM), Al Jazeera is it.

10. No Time for Fascists spews:

There are several themes to the sale of Current.

Current TV, bastion of progressivism on American cable TV, home to The Young Turks, Talking Liberally, The Gavin Newsome show, etc… owned and run by an unelected Feudal Lord; a monarchist who makes most of his money by selling oil, the burning of which just does wonders for climate change, I hear
Damn Al, you just handed a golden goose to both Glenn Beck et all AND Naderites feeling punchy from the criticism of not voting for you in 2000. In addition, you just took away ANY integrity that your previous, current, and any future work had/has relative to climate change.

11. Serial conservative spews:

@ 6

What you refer to as ‘recoiling in horror’ I think of as laughing my ass off at the gullibility of those Gore-supporting libbies, you among them. See @ 8 – I think having Al Jazeera’s English-speaking team on cable in this country is a good thing.

Another good thing is that the financing of this new venture will be more transparent than, say, the financing of Matt Damon’s next movie.

12. No Time for Fascists spews:

There are several themes to the sale of Current.

Lastly, there is a paranoid part of me that thinks that there is a concentrated effort to drive progressive content off broadcast media with the sale of Current and the format change of Seattle, and Portland and San Francisco, etc. Strangle access to viewpoints that counter the Koch Brothers, etc.

13. Serial conservative spews:

@ 12

Lastly, there is a paranoid part of me that thinks…

Are there parts of you that aren’t paranoid? If so, how come they never show up in this medium?

14. Serial conservative spews:

@ 12

Just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean that we’re not out to get you.

Think about it.

15. EvergreenRailfan spews:

Immediately after the deal was announced, TimeWarner, which was looking for an excuse, pulled the channel. They were going to use ratings as the reason, but the deal made it easier.

16. Serial conservative spews:

According to the FBI annual crime statistics, the number of murders committed annually with hammers and clubs far outnumbers the number of murders committed with a rifle.

Housing kills, people. And housing starts are up.

17. EvergreenRailfan spews:

By the way, in San Francisco, Clear Channel did re-format the station, but did keep much of the progressive lineup, just moved a couple from live, to delay. Unfotunately, they put Glenn Beck in Stephanie Miller’s timeslot, and ratings have not been so good.

18. Roger Rabbit spews:

No content here. Only spilled cereal. I’ll try another thread.

19. EvergreenRailfan spews:

Interesting. I just checked my facebook feed, and KLAY out of Lakewood is moving up Stephanie Miller’s timeslot before they even air it Instead of delayed in the afternoon, it will still be delayed, 9-noon, and Thom Hartman will be 4-7PM. This is partly due to Dr. Joy Browne having some problems with her home station in NYC, WOR, which is now owned by Clear Channel, and they are dumping the line-up in favor of their own talkers, Rush, Hannity, and Beck.

20. Politically Incorrect spews:

“Al Jazeera Seeks a U.S. Voice Where Gore Failed”

Why not? The Israeli lobby has had a near-monopoly on presenting its point of view to the American people. Why not have the Arabs and Muslims have their say? Could it be that maybe Israel’s claims are biased and self-serving, and may not necessarily be in the best interests of Americans?

21. Politically Incorrect spews:

“Once upon a time Al Gore seemed like he might be compared with America’s greatest leaders. Now it seems, having sold Current TV for $100M (his share) in oil money, that he has more in common with, say, Heidi Fleiss.”

Well, why not take advantage of a business deal when it presents itself? Or take advantage of a benefit that arises?

Maybe Ben Stein is right: the natural circumstance of life is hypocrisy.

22. Politically Incorrect spews:

“Glad that Al Jazeera is on board, as America needs more diversity in the news media, not more right wing bs.”

Or left wing bias either!

23. herzog spews:

What you refer to as ‘recoiling in horror’ I think of as laughing my ass off at the gullibility of those Gore-supporting libbies, you among them.

And I’m laughing my ass off at anyone who’s dumb enough to go to breitbart

24. herzog spews:

Housing kills, people

Especially gun nuts who sit in their houses and masturbate with their guns.

25. Mrs. Rabbit spews:

12. No Time For Fascists:

It isn’t paranoia. It’s a sad fact:

The Right Wing Radio Monopoly for instance:

1. “Without warning or explanation, Clear Channel Media, partly owned by investment firm Bain Capital, decided late Friday, Nov. 9 to replace the left wing talk radio station 620 AM with “Fox Sports Radio 620.”

Conservatives howl so much louder and more effectively than liberals is one significant reason that big media is always on its guard for “liberal” bias but gives conservative bias a free pass.

The book, “What Liberal Media?” explains that the real news story is not whether this newspaper, or that news anchor, is biased but rather to what extent the entire news industry is organized to communicate right wing conservative views and push American politics to the right, regardless of how “liberal” any news reporter may be.” review for “What Liberal Media?”

26. Mrs. Rabbit spews:

12. No Time For Fascists:

I recommend the library book: “What Liberal Media?”

27. Roger Rabbit spews:

Stealing From Thieves

The phone monopolies that gouge families of prison inmates to talk to their loved ones aren’t setting a good example for those behind bars.

Roger Rabbit Commentary: Is the warden a stockholder?

28. Roger Rabbit spews:

Guns Don’t Kill People Dep’t

Some jackass celebrating New Year’s by firing a gun into the air killed a 10-year-old girl.

Roger Rabbit Commentary: Obviously, stupid and reckless humans shouldn’t be allowed to have guns.

29. Roger Rabbit spews:

Of all the stupid things conservatives say, few are dumber than their assertions that the media — which are owned exclusively by rich white male conservatives — are “liberal biased.”

30. Roger Rabbit spews:

Tea Partiers are crying because millionaires have to pay taxes like their secretaries. Call the whaaaaaa-mmm-bulance!

Btw, someone should remind this woman that the American people didn’t elect a GOP House. Democratic House candidates got over a million more votes than GOP candidates. The GOP “majority” chose themselves through gerrymandering. Just like they do in Russia and North Korea.

31. Roger Rabbit spews:

The Tea Party wants senior citizens to take cuts to their Social Security and Medicare so millionaires won’t have to pay taxes.

32. Roger Rabbit spews:

Tea Partiers are hypocrites just like the rest of ‘em. They’re against government spending — except when its their spending.

“The speaker just decided to pull the vote. He gave no explanation,” said Rep. Michael Grimm, a tea party member who is the sole remaining Republican member of Congress from New York City. “I feel I was misled from the very beginning,” he said in a radio interview.

Roger Rabbit Commentary: Any two-bit congressman finds it easy to cut the other guy’s spending. You’re not really against spending until you vote against your own spending.

33. Broadway Joe spews:

I give the Qatari monarchy credit where it’s due. They came to the recognition that the oil will run out someday, and unless they did something useful with that wealth, eventually they’d end up right back where they were before oil was discovered – a flat-broke piece of nowhere. While I’ve never seen AJ’s English-language service, I’ve heard a lot of good things about it from a variety of sources – those who’ve talked with me about it say that its news coverage is more balanced and objective than any American outlet – and I’ll be interested to see if AJ America will be worth the hype.

And for the record, AJ is already established in US television with their beIN Sports channel, having bought up the US distribution rights to many of Europe’s top soccer leagues. After the 2014 World Cup in Brazil, ESPN will be out of soccer altogether, and all FOX Sports will have is the World Cup and the UEFA competitions (Champions and Europa Leagues).

34. EvergreenRailfan spews:

Not sure about Qatar, but the UAE has been trying to cultivate tourism, as one replacement for their oil economy when it runs out. Since their is not much in the way of other industries there yet, when they built the Dubai Metro, they bought rolling stock from a Japanese manufacturer, KinkiSharyo. The manufacturer also builds Light Rail Vehicles, used in Boston, Hoboken, Newark, Dallas, Phoenix, San Jose, Los Angeles, and Seattle. Qatar is building some rail transportation, but buying rolling stock from Siemens(including a more advanced Light Rail Vehicle than what is used in Portland), the same company that although based in Germany, dominates the US market, partly because, when the oil and automobile interests allegedly conspired to dismantle streetcars in the US, we lost our own domestic industry. United Streetcar in Portland is a start, but time will tell whether it will dominate the US market. It has the Buy America advantage, but so does Siemens, their plant is in San Francisco.

35. Roger Rabbit spews:

I stumbled on this article that may be of interest to anyone who wants to know what really happened during the prelude to Dubya’s invasion of Afghanistan. It’s kind of eye-opening. Scroll down to “Epilogue” for the good stuff.

36. Serial conservative spews:

They said if I voted for Mitt Romney that middle income workers would suffer more than higher earners under our federal tax policy. And they were right:

Workers making $30,000 will take a bigger hit on their pay than those earning $500,000 under new fiscal deal

Read more:

37. YLB spews:

36 – What? Does this mean Bob’s not pleased with the “shared sacrifice”???

Payroll tax holiday is over.. Wow there goes those non-existent, “trivial”, “boutique” Obama tax cuts!

38. Roger Rabbit spews:

@36 Now if we could just get the Federal Reserve to stop buying overpriced mortgage securities from deadbeat bankers …

39. EvergreenRailfan spews:

Oops, I meant the Siemens US Railcar plant is in Sacramento not San Francisco. One of their biggest customers is also in California, San Diego, and a few of their other customers are a state or two away. Portland and Salt Lake City.