Thursday roundup: Losers edition

And who will be losers more frequently this winter (at least 60 times) than your Oklahoma City Sonics? The OC Sonics launched their lame duck season in Seattle, displaced from their true home by a renegade hurricane arena lease, with a convincing 120-103 loss in Denver last night. After a summer in which owner Clay Bennett and partners did everything possible off-court to get Seattle fans not to care about the franchise, we enter part two of the divorce, with Sonics fans getting their first regular season look at what’s left after Bennett jettisoned the two best players from an inept team last year. It ain’t pretty: two talented teenage draft picks and a bunch of people you’ve never heard of, unless you’re a UW fan, in which case Wally Szczerbiak simply brings back bad memories. It’s gonna get ugly. “Home” opener, and second loss of the season, tonight against Phoenix.

I hear it’s nice in Oklahoma City in January.

Another loser, and the day’s top local story: Disgraced anti-gay state Rep. Richard “Big Dick” Curtis (R-Porno Emporium) resigned his House seat Wednesday, not because he’s a hypocrite, but because he’s not gay, and Republicans can never forgive someone who has to proclaim, verbally, that he’s not gay. He just likes — well, never mind. The sordid details of his Spokane sexcapades are here.

More than 100 mayors — plus former President, future First Husband, and permanent rock star Bill Clinton — hit Seattle today for a climate change “summit” that has already had Seattle mayor Greg Nickels lunging from photo-op to photo-op all week. Clinton will also do some fundraising for his wife while he’s in the area.

In a local story carried by virtually everyone, a Central Washington University chimpanzee who was the first non-human to learn sign language died yesterday at age 42.

On the national front, a loser Mexican gang member in the Bronx was convicted yesterday of terrorism in a gang-related shooting, under a new post 9-11 anti-terror law. Why? Because the violence “terrorized a civilian population,” an argument that can be made about virtually any street crime. And the ever-expanding power of the state marches on…

Remember when Fox News told us Al-Qaida was behind the California wildfires last week? This is the face of Al-Qaida: a ten-year-old playing with matches. Perhaps he can be prosecuted under new anti-terror laws, too. Waterboard him. The prospective new Attorney General won’t mind.

More on the loser meme: did anyone else catch that Dennis Kucinich’s life-altering UFO sighting experience, confirmed in Tuesday night’s Democratic presidential candidate debate, came outside the home of Shirley MacLaine in nearby Graham, Washington? The Dennis turned it into a Bush-bash: “…more people in this country have seen UFOs than I think approve of George Bush’s presidency.” (He’s wrong about that. Fourteen percent of Americans claim they’ve seen a UFO, slightly shy of Bush’s numbers.) Or, as Peter Gabriel once sang: “You can keep my things, they’ve come to take me home.” Safe travels, Dennis.


  1. 1

    thom spews:

    I’d like to see the Dept. of Homeland Security pursue the KKK. After all, they are a known terrorist cell.

    Also like to suggest that our real reason for being in Iraq is the convenience of being able to distribute public funds to your friends (private contractors) under the guise of being at war. It is ALWAYS about money.

  2. 4

    rob spews:

    Well, next time some NY cops shoot up some person of color on the streets, just for having a cell phone, now they can be prosecuted for terrorism. Isn’t that good?

  3. 5


    @4 Rob ..

    which color? last time I looked ayrabs and jews are both “Caucasians” and sure are hard to tell by looks form Greeks or italians!

    Or do you include the color “speakes spanish?”

    personally, I find An Coulter a person of very disturbing color.

  4. 7

    ArtFart spews:

    Hey, I’ll approve of anyone taking whatever gives them the opportunity to slam that piece of human garbage infesting the Oval Office, be it a UFO sighting, a change in the weather, or a case of the heaves.

    In that spirit, I’d like to pay respects to Washoe, the signing chimpanzee who died Tuesday at Central Washington University. With her vocabulary of 250 words, she made a hell of a lot more sense than any of our current crop of Publican polititicians, and alas, quite a few of the Democrats.

  5. 8

    SeattleJew spews:

    @7 in fact she will be sorely missed as an adviser to the State Reprican Ctee. There is however a macaca nemestrina monkey who has recently learned to count. Hope persists.

  6. 10

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Today is a heavy news day. Let’s start with the stock market, which is down 375 points on the Dow 1 day after a Federal Reserve interest rate cut — a rate cut considered necessary to prop up the financial markets but thought by most economists to be ill-advised from a macroeconomic point of view. Here’s what’s going on in the economy to prompt frightened investors to head for the exits:

    “Spending growth slowed in September”
    “Manufacturing growth slows in October”
    “Exxon Mobil profit down”
    “Foreclosure filings soar 100 percent”
    “Oil reaches $96 before backing off”

    (Headlines courtesy of AOl Finance, except the last one is a composite I assembled from the day’s news)

    So why should anyone (except XO shareholders) give a rat’s ass if Exxon’s profits are down? Isn’t that good for consumers? The answer is, when the world’s largest company suffers a steep drop in profits at the same time oil prices are hitting record highs — well, think of it as a canary in the coal mine. If Exxon can’t pull higher profits out of this economic environment, then no one can, and that’s going to lead to even bigger stock market declines and a worsening economy to come.

    The Bush economy has always been a house of cards built on irresponsible credit, and the chickens are coming home to roost. What the Federal Reserve rate cuts mean is Bernanke has made a political decision to devalue the dollar and increase inflation in order to prevent a liquidity crisis and a stock market shock. But illiquidity and stock market shocks are occurring anyway, and Bernanke is running out of tools. Every time he cuts interest rates, he further cheapens the dollar, which drives oil prices higher, and makes imported goods more expensive. Given how much we import these days (even substantial parts of our food supply), that means big-time inflation is just around the corner. And it’s going to hit us at the same time that job losses and slowing output do. Back in the late 70s, we called this “stagflation,” and it was deadly to the middle class’s financial health.

  7. 12

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Another major news story comes from Boeing. Mike Bair, the guy formerly in charge of the Dreamliner program, who remains a company vice president (now assigned to strategic planning), talked to newsies yesterday about (a) the problems in the Dreamliner program, and (b) Boeing’s next big thing, a replacement for the 737.

    Item (a) – Pulling together parts from many locations in the world and assembling them in Everett isn’t working well. Boeing probably won’t do THAT again. In addition, many of the suppliers failed to come through, and Boeing won’t use them again. So think in terms of a cluster of supplier plants in one super-location where major components are moved across the street instead of around the world.

    Item (b) – Mr. Bair said Everett won’t necessarily be the super-location, and implied Washington’s business climate sucks. Translation: The last time we held Boeing jobs hostage for taxpayer extortion money, it worked so well we’re going to do it again.

    Get ready for another Olympia till-tap by Boeing a/k/a

  8. 13

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Boeing, of course, is in the forefront of the big corporations pushing for passage of Prop. 1. They’ve contributed more money to the Prop. 1 campaign than they’ll ever pay in taxes to support it. Boeing is an expert practitioner of the black art of buying public amenities with poor people’s money. It’s no coincidence they want a lot of expensive things and won’t pay for any of them. The correlation there is extremely direct.

    In some cases, Boeing has a colorable argument. For example, they justify their exemptions from city taxes by saying things like, “We pay for maintaining our own fire department, and don’t use the city fire department, so why should we pay city taxes to support city fire services?”*

    Okay, so maybe they’ve got a valid point — to a point. But Boeing also wants $38 billion of transportation improvements that help its business by getting workers to their plants on time and make it easier to move things like airplane wings and jet engines and fleets of trucks full of smaller parts over local roads. They just don’t want to pay for it, that’s all. They want you to pay for it, and in addition, they want you to pay them billions in extortion money for the privilege of enabling an ever-smaller percentage of the local workforce to work in relatively high-paying Boeing jobs. Which is a lousy fucking deal for the rest of us who don’t have a high-paying Boeing job.

    Paying blackmailers, extortionists, and hostage-takers is almost always a bad idea — partly because if you do, they come back for me. Paying ransom for hostages creates incentives to take more hostages. Duh.

    Yet, that’s exactly what not-so-saintly Saint Ronnie did. And he did it in the worst way possible. He didn’t just give Iran money for our hostages; he gave them ARMS. And he did it on the sneak — because it was unconstitutional, illegal, would have provoked public anger, and above all because it was a FUCKING BAD IDEA because, among other things, it encouraged Iran to take more hostages. Remember those British sailors they grabbed a couple months ago?

    The problem with paying blackmailers is they always come back for more blackmail money. The problem with paying an extortionist who threatens to torch your business is that he comes back next month threatening you again and demanding another payment. Eventually paying the extortionist becomes a regular event and this is what we all a “protection racket.”

    Welcome to the protection rackets, Boeing. You are now an organized criminal enterprise targeting Washington taxpayers. Locke was a fool to pay them off the first time. Gregoire would be a fool to pay them off again. Rossi, I’m convinced, IS a big enough fool to do it. After all, it’s YOUR money he’d be spending. And don’t kid yourself about his willingness to spend it, if our state’s voters are foolish enough to buy his candy line.

    * Roger Rabbit paraphrase

  9. 14

    rhp6033 spews:

    Elsewhere in the news: 55% of evangelicals will seriously consider supporting a third-party candidate if the Republicans pick Gulliani.

    But buried elsewhere in the story is that Republicans and those “leaning Republican” represent only 35% of the electorate. (Similar news stories have been out for several months now). In contrast, the Democrats can claim about 50% of party loyalty. Since 35% “leaning Republican” is higher than Bush’s approval ratings over the past year, once can only speculate that there are at least a few Republicans who think Bush is doing a lousy job, but will still vote Republican anyway, regardless of whether the devil himself were the nominee. Considering all the bad news the Republicans have suffered over the past couple of years, it is unlikely that anything else will erode that support further.

    But crunch the numbers even further, and you find that since evangelicals make up one-third of the Republican base, and if half of them leave to support a third-party candidate, then you have Republicans bringing in about 25% of popular vote, nationally. The evangelical third-party candidate would presumably bring in not more than 7%, unless he had wider appeal (I think it is unlikely that third-party evangelical candidate would be a woman).

    And who, “praytell”, would be the evangelical candidate? Pat Robertson (again)? His last campaign was derailed when it was learned that his father had used political influence to pull him from a troop ship bound for Korea during that war. Of course, in the context of the Republicans and their hypocracy regarding “supporting the troops”, that is a rather minor example of “ChickenHawk” morality. But it would make for a rather entertaining campaign, would it not?

    A couple of years ago I expressed doubt that Bush’s foilables would translate into political victory for Democrates when Bush wouldn’t be running again. What I didn’t count on was that the wheels would be coming off the bus of the entire Republican party. It seems that the evangelicals are slowly coming to the realization that they have been used by the Republicans for quite a long time, and that it has ALWAYS about the tax cuts and federal welfare for the polically connect rich and their corporations. The last thing the Republican party really wants is for abortion to be made illegal, or organized prayer returned to public schools, because that has been the issues which reliably brought out the evangelical base to the polls and fundraisers in the past. It seems that those days might be over, at least for a while.

  10. 15

    Rosie O'Goldstein spews:

    Medved-o-Fascism Week, Part Deux:

    Islamists have nothing like the military machine the Axis deployed in World War II, nor the Soviet Union during the cold War. What do the Islamists have to compare with the Wehrmacht or the Red Army? The SS of Spetznaz? The Gestapo or the KGB? Well …..
    * A potential access to weapons of mass destruction that could devastate Western life.
    * A religious appeal that provides deeper resonance and greater staying power than the artificial ideologies of fascism or Communism.
    * An impressively conceptualized, funded, and organized institutional machinery that successfully builds credibility, goodwill and electoral success.
    * Etc.
    {Borrowed from Daniel Pipes, via Podhoretz and National Review. Lop-eared Rabbit incantations of Fair Use, blah blah blah.]

    But every uptight Seattleite agrees with Robert Jamieson and Fat Rosie that radical Christianofascism is a greater threat than Islamofascism. Still, check out Michael Scheuer in Imperial Hubris, the part about Osama getting a Koranic dispensation for taking out an American city, a project in which innocent American Muslims would be collateral damage. OBL wanted assurance that the good deed of killing millions of American infidels would weigh more heavily in the heavenly balance than would be bad deed of collaterally taking Muslim lives.

  11. 16

    Goldy Falwell spews:

    6033: Check the Religious Right implosion article in this week’s edition of the Jayson Blair Times Magazine.

  12. 17

    ArtFart spews:

    The Democrat leadership better not count on that “50% loyalty” if the Dems in Congress don’t stop handing BushBag everything he wants. This will be for two reasons.

    First of all, some of their supporters are going to get so disgusted they’ll vote for the other folks out of spite, or just say home on election day.

    Secondly, if they rubber-stamp a smarmy “vanilla Gonzales” to be Attorney General, we’ll see all the resources of the “justice” department brought into play to monkey-wrench the election on such a grand scale that 2000 and 2004 will seem like the good old days by comparison.

  13. 18

    Broadway Joe spews:

    Geov, why even bother with the Carpetbaggers…, the team formerly known as the Sonics any more? I have a friend who owns a nightclub in the vicinity of the Key, who told me about a ‘super-secret’ plan to keep the team in Seattle, but short of a plane crash, mass assassination, or something else that would do away with Clayboy and the Redneck Mafia, I just don’t see anything that anyone can do to keep them here. I had to swallow hard to keep from doing a spit-take when she told me about this ‘super-secret’ plan.

  14. 19

    Rabbitless Thursday spews:

    Speaking of losers: Yesterday Rabbit typed, with his hairy little feet, that the Red Scare was a Republican pogrom. As every honest schoolboy knows, the Red Scare was a proud project of proud progressive Democrats. I did the Scare’s DNA; Woodrow Wilson and A. Mitchell Palmer, Quaker, were its daddies.

    Before the Red Scare, in which hundreds or thousands were rounded up, beaten, and deported, there were two years of war hysteria. The Democrat governor of Montana drafted a Sedition Act and an Espionage Act to protect Big Sky cowboys from the Kaiser. Dozens of lesser Montanans were put away for decades for the crime of questioning Woodrow or the war he vowed, in 1916, during his campaign for re-election (and while watching the Klan rise again in Birth of a Nation) to keep us out of.

    Montana’s Democrat Sedition Act and Espionage Act became the models for Democrat Wilson’s in 1917. Even the questioning of Wheatless Wednesday or Meatless Friday — Food Will Win the War! — was punished as sedition.

    Makes us Bushiviks look like mild-mannered moderates, doesn’t it?

  15. 20

    RonK, Seattle spews:

    Sonics went into the 4th qtr with no go-to guy – just the way they’ll go into every 4th Q this season.

    The irony is that 2 or 3 of these guys will be go-to guys by the time they get to OKC.

    Loser: faithful Sonics fans.

    Bigger loser: faithful Storm fans.

  16. 21

    Paulie Boy Krugman spews:

    Enron hack and flack Paul Krugman is in town. So is media bias. The Seattle Times has a hit on queer Richard Curtis, R-La Center, and the very first part of the 30-point header is: GOP. Then the subhead: GOP Retreat. Then the second word of the AP story about his resignation: Republican. Think anybody missed the point?

    A few pages away, the Times gets around to mentioning Bobby Jindal, new governor of Louisiana. Two full columns and a photo showing that Mr. Jindal is a very dark man in a white/Blanco state, Chocolate City excepted. No mention of the fine fact that Jindal is a Republican on a Democrat plantation. The point, apparently, is that the Times is willing to let readers believe that Jindal is probably just another Democrat diversity hack.

    But I could be wrong. On another page of the Times, a hack from Fairness & Accuracy in Reporting asserts “the nonexistent liberal bias in the news media.” So there must be some other explanation, an explanation other than bias, to explain why it was impossible to tell from Big Media (BM) reports a while back that the perv running Oregon was a Democrat activist.

  17. 22

    Annie Wilks Travellers' Aide Society spews:

    Just another loser. Just another day in Seattle.

    The excellent Piper has a fan club. News to nobody but me, I suppose, since everybody knows I’m behind the curve.

    Here is a missive from the excellent Piper’s Number One Fan; note the similarity of Piper’s pining lover to big bad Annie in Stephen King’s novel, Misery:

    Annie oinked like a hog. So does thehim. Loser similarities abound. Cups runneth over.

  18. 23

    Annie Wilkes Travellers' Aide Society spews:

    Any more questions about the value and virtues of anonymity on this dog of a blog? When its most thoughtful participant, Piper, becomes the obsession of love-starved swine? When a hairy-footed lop-eared little bugger digs like Richard Pope on dope into Sharkanski’s document dump?

  19. 24

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @15 * A potential access to weapons of mass destruction that could devastate Western life.
    * A religious appeal that provides deeper resonance and greater staying power than the artificial ideologies of fascism or Communism.
    * An impressively conceptualized, funded, and organized institutional machinery that successfully builds credibility, goodwill and electoral success.
    * Etc.

    Aren’t you describing the GOP? Yes, I think so!

  20. 25

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    Baby Bush Wets His Diaper

    In our Terrible Twos Thursday Tantrum Department, the commander-guy …

    (a) Compared Democratic congressional leaders to those who ignored the rise of Lenin and Hitler, and said the world risks “similar consequences” if they don’t support his war policies.

    (b) Hinted that if Democrats don’t confirm Mukasey as attorney general, he won’t nominate anyone else, leaving the DOJ leaderless.

  21. 28

    Pipers Piping, Partridges in Pear Trees spews:

    Wrong again, loser. Piper is way down the list; he’s only Piper’s #3 fan. I’m (fan) #2. The drooling obsessed sex-crazed sick Ken-Starr stalker who wrote the long love-hate mash note, cited above, is Number One.

    Because I don’t live here, I don’t know who thehim is (Lee, perhaps?), but if thehim comes in with a Queen Anne axe and a butane torch, be very afraid.

    Told Piper that it’s futile to throw pearls of wisdom and civility at shit-eating pigs like you, and you continue to prove my point.

  22. 29

    Donkey Cong spews:

    The Oregon gov referred to above? Neil Goldschmidt. Amazing that our imperial media, three years ago, had no room for showing his party affiliation: Democrat.

    While some Big Media have room to report that the reported dangerous liaisons between teachers and pupils now number in the thousands (a 25-year-old teacher and her 13-year-old apt pupil are, at this moment, on the run in Mexico), a number way beyond the number of pedo priests, Big Media do not call for a public-school Inquisition. Torquemada tactics and Savonarola bonfires are now reserved for conservative Catholicism.