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Texas blog roundup for the week of January 23

The Texas Progressive Alliance is ready for pitchers and catchers to report as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for January 22

“I’m a Criminology Professor. I’ve Seen Students Like the Idaho Suspect Before.”

“After being fired by Disney for transphobic and antisemitic statements, Gina Carano’s new movie has epically flopped”. I should note that what is reported there is not entirely accurate, but the real story is pretty hilarious.

Only 47 percent of nursing home residents were fully up-to-date and had received the bivalent COVID booster in the four weeks preceding December 18, according to AARP. Less than a quarter of staff, 22 percent, are fully up-to-date on their COVID vaccinations. This is despite relatively high rates of infection and transmission. Over the same time period, one in 17 nursing home residents tested positive for COVID-19 and at least 1,100 nursing home residents died. In all, 64 percent of nursing homes had at least one resident case. COVID is the third leading cause of death for Americans over 65.”

“In the country which we live in, about 60 percent of the population identifies as white, and you take Latinx people who identify as Caucasian, it’s maybe closer to 70 percent if you’re going for the biggest meat of the audience … you tend to program for white men, because women watch a lot more drama and comedy than men, so if you get a scripted program that appeals to men, that’s automatically a boom. You worry, when there’s narrowing prospects, who’s losing opportunity.”

“The Pentagon’s new office for investigating potential UFO sightings received hundreds of new reports in 2022, and while it can explain more than half of those events, a sizable chunk remains a mystery.”

“The cycle has some experts wondering about how useful these discussions are. We aren’t, after all, obsessing about which strain of H3N2 flu has been causing most of the illness that has cycled through the United States in this abnormally early flu season. That’s because new strains of existing flu viruses may make us more vulnerable to infection, but they don’t render us defenseless against influenza. The same is true with SARS-2 subvariants — but that sometimes gets lost in the back and forth.”

RIP, Gina Lollobrigida, iconic Italian movie star.

“CNET Has Been Quietly Publishing AI-Written Articles for Months”.

“Roomba testers feel misled after intimate images ended up on Facebook”.

“The Taliban have started using Twitter’s paid-for verification feature, meaning some now have blue ticks on their accounts.”

“To be fair, there are not a large number of Bible verses that directly address the subject of oral sex. The practice is enthusiastically celebrated in several places in the Song of Solomon, but that book is a tricky thing to cite if you’re also intent on blanket condemnations of all extramarital sex.”

RIP, Chris Ford, former NBA player and coach mostly for the Boston Celtics, credited with scoring the first 3-point basket in NBA history.

“Here are some fun numbers. Toyota did not sell a single all-electric product until 2020, flagging far behind both rivals like Mitsubishi, Nissan, and BMW, all of which were selling EV models years before Toyota even established an electric car office. And that electrified product (a version of its C-HR SUV) was initially exclusive to Chinese consumers. The company’s first globally available zero-emission vehicle, the bZ4x, had a limited production run, went on sale in the U.S. only last year, faced an alarming safety recall, and ultimately sold just a couple hundred models here, a paltry portion of the 800,000 total EVs sold stateside throughout 2022.”

We’re all trying to find the guy that did this, SCOTUS edition.

“They said that my husband Don Lewis is alive and well in Costa Rica. And yet all of this hay has been made about me having something to do with his disappearance when Homeland Security has known where he is at least since back then.” The Internet reacts.

RIP, David Crosby, Rock and Roll Hall of Famer and co-founder of The Byrds and Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young.

Lock him up.

RIP, Sal Bando, three-time World Series champion third baseman with the Oakland A’s.

Texas blog roundup for the week of January 16

The Texas Progressive Alliance has already started the countdown clock to sine die as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for January 15

“In addition to helping absorb water, rain gardens can filter dirty street runoff, reduce urban heat, and provide a habitat for pollinators like bees and birds. So if you have space for it, you might consider adding one to your home.”

Some notes from a book critic about the first chapter of Ross Douthat’s epic fantasy novel that he posted to his Substack.

“We were the most gangsta as you could be, but that day at Dionne Warwick’s house, I believe we got out-gangstered that day.”

I don’t know if the Republicans have finally elected a Speaker as I write this, but once they do and they start doing actual legislative things, crap like this will be high on their priority list.

RIP, Adam Rich, former child star best known for his role on Eight is Enough.

Ethics, schmethics.

“We lost many former major league baseball players in 2022. Here is a review and roster of the most prominent ones.”

“Political action committees affiliated with more than 70 major corporations said they would pause or reconsider donations to those who objected to certifying the results of the 2020 election after the attack on the U.S. Capitol two years ago. Then they gave more than $10 million to members of Congress who did just that, according to a POLITICO analysis of federal campaign finance filings.”

“The narrative laid out in the Select Committee’s report illustrates how the twin threats of political violence and anti-democracy schemes were able to feed off each other in the lead-up to January 6 in a vicious cycle that still has not subsided.”

“A Tax Guru Explains Why Donald Trump May Finally Be in Trouble“.

“You do your job, hold up your part of the deal, the way they ask you to. Then they decide they don’t want to do their part of the job — for a tax break. And suddenly you’re paid, but you’re NOT getting the support you were promised as part of the deal.”

“The Earth’s ozone layer is on its way to recovering within the next 40 years”.

RIP, Sheila Masters, Houston community leader, friend and neighbor to George Floyd and his family.

“Investigators used forensic genealogy to zero in on [Idaho multiple murders] suspect Bryan Kohberger. But they aren’t saying so.”

“Give it up, lawmakers: It’s time to give C-SPAN better access to the House floor”.

“How Democrats Managed to Avoid a Red Wave in the 2022 Midterms”.

“Roman concrete, in many cases, has proven to be longer-lasting than its modern equivalent, which can deteriorate within decades. Now, scientists behind a new study say they have uncovered the mystery ingredient that allowed the Romans to make their construction material so durable and build elaborate structures in challenging places such as docks, sewers and earthquake zones.”

RIP, Jeff Beck, guitar virtuoso and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer.

RIP, Charles White, former ALl Pro NFL running back who won a Heisman Trophy and a national championship while at USC.

RIP, Lisa Marie Presley, daughter of Elvis.

RIP, Robbie Bachman, drummer and co-founder of Bachman-Turner Overdrive.

Texas blog roundup for the week of January 9

The Texas Progressive Alliance mourns the death of labor stalwart David Van Os as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for January 8

“Not only did Greta Thunberg destroy Andrew Tate with her tweet, she made him so angry he inadvertently tipped off Romanian authorities of his presence in Romania with his lame comeback video.”

“Why can’t we make remote controls thick and heavy again?”

“Let’s talk about the real problems with rural America”.

“Google’s embrace of publisher confidentiality means roughly 1 million publishers can remain anonymous to companies and individuals who buy ads on its network to reach customers. This opens the door to a range of abuses and schemes that steal potentially billions of dollars a year and put lives and livelihoods at risk due to dangerous disinformation, fraud and scams.”

RIP, Anita Pointer, Grammy-winning singer with the Pointer Sisters.

Time once again to vote for the Worthy Awards.

Advice on the minimum amount of work needed to protect your data and privacy.

RIP, Cliff Gustafson, longtime baseball coach at the University of Texas, two-time College World Series winner, formerly the winningest baseball coach in the NCAA.

Another “wellness to QAnon pipeline” example.

RIP, Walt Cunningham, Apollo 7 astronaut who was on the first crewed Apollo flight.

RIP, Orion Know, Jr, one of the discoverers of Natural Bridge Caverns.

Five things to expect from the incoming House”. You’ve already seen plenty of the chaos, and there’s so much more to come.

To put it another way, the worst people you know are having a fight.

“There are other critical functions that the House of Representatives executes that can’t take place until there’s a Speaker in place. Without a Speaker, committee assignments can’t be finalized.”

“An ancient wooden sarcophagus that was featured at the Houston Museum of Natural Sciences was returned to Egypt after U.S. authorities determined it was looted years ago, Egyptian officials said Monday.”

RIP, James “Buster” Corley, co-founder of Dave & Buster’s.

The next Benoit Blanc film will not have Muppets in it. Sadly.

“Kevin is a man with many flaws, but on this day his fatal one was not heeding the lesson of the leopard-eating-faces allegory.”

“The longtime partner of Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, who died after the Jan. 6 riot, filed a wrongful death lawsuit Thursday against former President Donald Trump and two men involved in assaulting Sicknick.”

RIP, Nate Colbert, former MLB first baseman and still the all-time home run leader for the San Diego Padres.

Texas blog roundup for the week of January 2

The Texas Progressive Alliance still cannot believe that the year 2023 is not off in the distant future as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for January 1

I’m sorry, but the year 2023 still sounds like something out of a science fiction story to me.

The sordid history of Ticketmaster apparently includes that company getting a boost from former Sen. Phil Gramm.

“The US Senate is a fundamentally broken institution. Democratic judges need to account for that in their retirement decisions.”

“A freelance producer for ABC News also gathered dirt on critics of a consulting firm’s powerful clients.” A truly bonkers story.

“You Can Now Sue Movie Studios for False Advertising With Deceptive Trailers”. You can thank Ana de Armas, or more specifically two of her fans, for that.

“The 5 ‘known unknowns’ that will define 2024″.

About damn time: “West Point will remove Confederate symbols from its campus”.

“A List Of All The Jan. 6 Committee Witnesses Who Pleaded The Fifth“. A real rogue’s gallery in there.

Meet Bessie Mae Kelley, pioneering female animator from the 1920s whose story is just now being told.

“From a spacecraft the size of a refrigerator plowing into an asteroid (deliberately) to a helicopter trying to catch a rocket plummeting back to Earth, 2022 offered surreal moments in space that could have been ripped from the pages of a science fiction movie script.”

RIP, Thom Bell, Grammy Award-winning producer, arranger, composer, and one of the architects of Philadelphia soul music.

“The question of why the Trumpian populist right is so consumed with hatred for Ukraine—a hatred that clearly goes beyond concerns about U.S. spending, a very small portion of our military budget, or about the nonexistent involvement of American troops—doesn’t have a simple answer. Partly, it’s simply partisanship: If the libs are for it, we’re against it, and the more offensively the better. (And if the pre-Trump Republican establishment is also for it, then we’re even more against it.)”

No, Buckminster Fuller was not a cryptocurrency prophet.

‘Home Alone’ reimagined in the style of ‘The White Lotus’ opening credits“. And generated by an AI, which makes it even creepier.

RIP, Kathy Whitworth, pro golfer whose 88 LPGA Tour victories, six more than Sam Snead and Tiger Woods had on the men’s tour, makes her the winningest golfer of all time.

“Netflix is reportedly developing a Stranger Things anime series set in 1980s Tokyo that will be labeled as the franchise’s first official spinoff.”

“Three years on, the pandemic — and our response — have been jolting. Here’s what even the experts didn’t see coming.”

“The Dog Not Barking about a U.S. Recession”.

RIP, Pele, all-time soccer legend. I had the opportunity to see him play a game with the NY Cosmos of the old NASL at Giants Stadium in the 70s, and yes, he scored a goal, the only one in a 1-0 Cosmos win. I have no recollection of how I came to be at Giants Stadium watching a Cosmos game but I’m glad I was there.

“Sherlock Holmes will finally escape copyright this weekend”.

RIP, Benedict XIV, Pope Emeritus.

RIP, Barbara Walters, trailblazing TV newscaster and anchor.

Here are your 2022 Golden Duke winners.

Texas blog roundup for the week of December 26

The Texas Progressive Alliance wishes everyone a Happy Boxing Day as it brings you the last blog roundup of 2022.

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Weekend link dump for December 25

It may be Christmas but it’s also Sunday, and on Sunday we dump links. You needed something to read after the chaos subsided a little, right?

“Which Streamer Was the Biggest A-Hole About Cancellations in 2022?” (Spoiler alert: It was HBOMax, and it wasn’t close.)

“A researcher found more plotlines around and more mentions of abortion on TV this year — though wealthy White characters are still overrepresented.”

“No One Is Happier About Sam Bankman-Fried’s Downfall Than the Bitcoin People”.

“The federal charging documents, obtained by the Globe, outline a plot pulled straight from “The Americans” TV series, about KGB agents raising a family near Washington, D.C.”

“It’s time to change our minds about the cause of our current bout of inflation”.

Can you in fact cook a steak by dropping it from space? Science finally tells us.

“So: A small but not negligible minority of people say they won’t go back to pre-pandemic life. A plurality say they will continue at least some precautions. And there’s reason to believe that covid worries are having an effect on labor force participation. But the who of people with these concerns is where the stereotypes take serious damage.”

RIP, Gabrielle Beaumont, prolific and pioneering TV director, who may have directed more primetime hours of television than any other women in history.

“James Cameron aims to finally put that ‘Titanic’ door debate to rest, 25 years later”.

“At the core of every Musk company is a big, world-changing promise — they sell the idea that their products and services are saving humanity from some intractable problem, whether it’s climate crisis or traffic. But Musk’s promises track more with religion — he has been sent to save us from our earthly sins of waste and pollution — than with science. Think about it a bit and the idea that a luxury sports car can save us from global warming or that the answer for the Earth’s toxification is to move everyone to Mars falls apart, but that isn’t the point. The goal of all this mythmaking is to turn investors, employees, and customers into evangelists.”

Lock them up.

RIP, Tom Browning, former pitcher who won a World Series with the Cincinnati Reds and threw a perfect game in 1988.

“On Monday, the House Select Committee investigating the January 6th attack on the U.S. Capitol released an executive summary of its final report, which focuses primarily on former President Donald Trump’s alleged criminal efforts to overturn the 2020 election. The committee, however, also presented new evidence of criminal efforts to interfere with its investigation – on the part of some witnesses, their attorneys, and others associated with the former president. It is the kind of evidence that may have far-reaching implications including bolstering Special Counsel Jack Smith’s January 6th and Mar-a-Lago investigations.”

“Whale-sized shonisaurs dominated the ocean 230 million years ago. A fossil cluster offers a fascinating glimpse at how they lived—based on where they died.”

RIP, Franco Harris, Hall of Fame running back who won four Super Bowls with the Pittsburgh Steelers and caught the iconic Immaculate Reception.

“But while it’s hard to ignore the warning signs, there are plenty of reasons to still have hope for our planet’s future — starting with what happened at COP15.”

“But it’s also gutting because I’ve seen that look before. I’ve seen that same heartbroken and heart-breaking expression on my own father’s face.”

RIP, Rudi Valentino, oldest male orangutan in North America, lifelong resident of the Houston Zoo.

“A New York State metropolis recently rocked by a racist mass shooting filed a groundbreaking lawsuit Tuesday against multiple gun manufacturers, including Smith & Wesson, Glock, Remington, Sig Sauer, and Beretta.”

“Hotels say goodbye to daily room cleanings and hello to robots as workers stay scarce”.

I did not believe it for a second.”

Texas blog roundup for the week of December 19

The Texas Progressive Alliance has some chestnuts and an open fire ready to go as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for December 18

“How Demographic Shifts Fueled by Covid Delivered Midterm Wins for Democrats”.

Times sure are tough for cable channels right now.

“The very last 747 jet has been made, ending a run of more than 50 years”.

RIP, Paul Silas, three-time NBA champion, former NBA coach, father of current Rockets head coach Stephen Silas.

“The 2022 Comedy Wildlife Photography Awards are a good laugh”.

“Here is the list of shows that HBO Max canceled in 2022″.

“Before and after. Those are the lines chalked out over the field of life, until it becomes a grid of pasts foreclosed and futures opening onto unstable terrain. Before this. After this.”

“Companies say they want to acknowledge environmental impacts. Republicans are mad about that.”

“Beyond its stark cruelty, this tweet is incredibly thirsty. As right-wing troll memes go, it is Dad-level, 4chan–Clark Griswold stuff, which is to say it’s desperate engagement bait in the hopes of attracting kudos from the only influencers who give Musk the time of day anymore: right-wing shock jocks. But that is the proper company for the billionaire, because whether or not he wants to admit it, Musk is actively aiding the far right’s political project. He is a right-wing activist.”

RIP, Mike Leach, head football coach at Mississippi State, innovator who co-created the Air Raid offense.

RIP, Michael Lindenberger, vice president and editorial page editor of the Kansas City Star who won a Pulitzer as the deputy opinion editor for the Houston Chronicle.

“YouGov found that self-described liberals now view Tesla more negatively than conservatives, though conservatives also have a negative view of the brand on average, according to the firm’s most recent data.” My next car will be electric. It will not be a Tesla.

“50 years ago today, one of the most iconic Sesame Street segments first aired on PBS.” More on it here, and if you’re not laughing, crying, or both by the end you have a cold, cold heart.

I didn’t realize when I started reading this Twitter thread that it was a loving tribute to one of the adult victims of the Sandy Hook massacre. But it was and it was beautiful and life-affirming and now I’m mad again at everyone that has helped enable the gun violence lobby. Talk among yourselves, I’ll be doing some deep breathing exercises.

“Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) announced on Tuesday that he expects there will be action on the Electoral Count Act reform before the new Congress takes over in January.”

Disbar him.

Lock him up.

“Congress votes to remove a bust of the Dred Scott decision’s author from the Capitol”. About damn time.

Texas blog roundup for the week of December 12

The Texas Progressive Alliance welcomes Britney Griner back home as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for December 11

“Why do McCarthy, Scott, and other so-called Republican leaders duck explicit invitations to address the former president’s behavior? Because they’re cowards.”

“Imagine an “Oh, yeah?” button on your browser.”

“Here’s a midterm report on remote work”.

“I have a few stray, in-the-weeds thoughts on the verdicts that I’d like to share after live-tweeting all but about two hours of the 29-day [Oath Keepers] trial from the courthouse media room.”

RIP, Bob McGrath, actor and singer and original cast member of Sesame Street.

She seems nice. Also, lock her up.

“But we know that is not true – the evidence makes that crystal clear. We know that subverting the Constitution is right in this defendant’s wheelhouse. And you don’t have to take my word for it. We know he is ready to subvert the Constitution BECAUSE OF HIS OWN WORDS.”

“Anyone looking for more insight into how Twitter, and social media companies in general, deal with content moderation might learn something. Anyone looking for proof of a political conspiracy will find that even this information, selectively released by people trying to make it look like a big scandal, showed that it wasn’t.

“Julianne Sitch became the first woman to coach a men’s soccer team to an NCAA championship, guiding the University of Chicago to the Division III title.”

RIP, Jo Carol Pierce, Lubbock-born singer/songwriter and playwright. I saw her perform years ago at the Mucky Duck, and it’s probably more accurate to say she was performing a larger-than-life character named Jo Carol Pierce that was still basically her. If you can imagine Dolly Parton as more of a one woman play than a singer, you’re kind of in the neighborhood of Jo Carol Pierce. It’s a great obit, give it a read whether you’d ever heard of her or not.

The Golden Dukes are back.

Actually, goblin mode is your word of the year.

RIP, Kirstie Alley, Emmy-winning actor best known for Cheers, Veronica’s Closet, and Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan.

“Deshaun Watson’s Return Often Felt Like Any Other Game. That’s the Problem.”

“More than two dozen Taylor Swift fans are suing Ticketmaster parent Live Nation Entertainment, Inc. for “unlawful conduct” in the pop star’s chaotic tour sale, claiming the ticketing giant violated antitrust laws, among others.”

“Legendary Los Angeles rock band Guns N’ Roses has sued online gun store Texas Guns and Roses for trademark infringement”.

“Does Alito think that the sole purpose of oral argument is to troll liberals on Twitter?”

RIP, Nick Bollettieri, legendary tennis coach who worked with the Williams sisters, Andre Agassi, and Boris Becker.

Lock them up.

“Trump attorneys admit to finding more classified documents that Trump had stashed in a new location”. There is no bottom.

RIP, George Newall, co-creator of Schoolhouse Rock.

Lock them up.

RIP, Grant Wahl, soccer journalist who was in Qatar covering the World Cup.

Texas blog roundup for the week of December 5

It’s beginning to look a lot like the weekly Texas Progressive Alliance blog roundup, everywhere you go.

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Weekend link dump for December 4

Everyone should start blogging again. Own your own site. Visit all your friends’ sites. Bring back the artisan, hand-crafted Web.”

“As first reported by The Wall Street Journal, the first self-proclaimed anti-woke “bank” in the nation is dying a hot flaming bankrupt death only a few brief months after opening for business.”

“Taking all parties together, overall perceptions of crime have been down consistently over the past decade. This changed only in 2022, when news media reports and Republican campaign ads began to insist that crime was out of control this year even though every indicator suggests that property crime is down and violent crime is up only slightly.”

Planes, Trains and Automobiles at 35: An Oral History of One of the Most Beloved Road Movies Ever Made”.

Ninety percent of Ohio diner customers approve of this profile of the NYT Pitchbot Twitter account.

So, does anyone have the wheel at Tesla now that Elon is a full-time Twitter troll/owner?

Did you know that the Netflix DVD-by-mail service is still a thing? Because it is.

Block and mute, whichever floats your boat. I had a moderately viral tweet earlier this year that drew some trolls, and I blocked them without a moment’s thought. Good times.

What Michael Harriot says.

Gaslighting is your word of the year.

The FTX “death spiral” claims another victim.

Methinks Justice Alito doth protest too much.

“Ultimately, Mueller undermined the main purpose of the special counsel, which is (in Mueller’s words), “to assure full public confidence in the outcome of investigations.” And here’s why: Barr, Trump, and others were counting on Mueller to observe institutional norms in crafting their strategy. They knew that, both because of his temperament and strict observance of institutional norms, he wasn’t going to correct their mischaracterizations publicly. Those assumptions have to change this time around: It’s clear that the old rules aren’t going to work in today’s information ecosystem. The key is to tweak them in such a way that they recalibrate perceptions without abandoning the principles on which the original polices are based.”

Lock them up. It’s a big deal.

RIP, Christine McVie, singer, songwriter, and keyboardist for Fleetwood Mac.

“This is why streaming Netflix, Disney Plus, and HBO Max keeps getting more expensive“.

“Dr. Oz’s former producers who worked on his longtime talk show are refusing to talk to him after his failed run for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania”.

RIP, Gaylord Perry, Hall of Fame pitcher who was the first to win the Cy Young award in each league.

RIP, John Hadl, Pro Bowl quarterback for the LA Rams and other teams.

“So this was the last straw.”

“What Congress’s same-sex marriage bill actually does“.

RIP, Herb Ritchie, former criminal court judge in Harris County and survivor of Charles Whitman’s 1966 sniper attack at the University of Texas.

Texas blog roundup for the week of November 28

The Texas Progressive Alliance is now emotionally ready to start hearing Christmas music as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for November 27

“Fox News significantly decreased its volume of violent crime coverage in the week of the midterms, down 63% from the week prior.”

You’re Not Ready for How Much These Jokers Want to Talk about Hunter Biden’s Laptop”.

“This model prosecution memorandum (or “pros memo”) assesses the potential charges against former President Donald Trump emanating from his handling of classified documents and other government records since leaving office on January 20, 2021.”

“How the news media – long in thrall to Trump – can cover his new run for president responsibly“.

I don’t know enough about “effective altruism” to know if it’s a worthwhile movement or mostly bogus, but I agree that Sam Bankman-Fried was a terrible face for that movement and to whatever extent it continues to exist they’re better off without him.

The comic strip Funky Winkerbean will cease publication on December 31 after fifty years.

“Buffalo Bills fans in New York rallied [last] Saturday to shovel out players, amid a dangerous lake-effect snowstorm, in an effort to get them to the airport in time to travel to Detroit for their game Sunday against the Cleveland Browns.”

World’s biggest crybabies, bar none.

The conservative SCOTUS justices are even more corrupt than you thought.

“Do you have any idea how embarrassed the creator of a television show must be of that show to have his name removed?”

“The Messaging Mistake That Cost Republicans the Midterms”.

“Malta’s government is to propose a change in the law to allow doctors to terminate a pregnancy if a mother’s life or health is at risk.”

Congratulations to Olivia Pichardo, the first female baseball player to be on an active NCAA Division I roster.

“The Illustrated and Admittedly Incomplete History of the Turducken“.

“Whatever the reason, actual turkey prices right now are nowhere near what the Farm Bureau says they are—a fact the group sheepishly admitted in the press release announcing the survey last week. But those “sharply lower prices” didn’t make it into News at 10.”

“[A] voting rights advocate is an election denier who lost a close election.”

“If the 11th Circuit does what now seems likely, once the newly appointed special counsel gets up to speed, an indictment of the former president for unlawful possession of the materials found at Mar-a-Lago should quickly follow. The case is both a prosecutorial “slam dunk” and the most effective way to begin prosecuting all matters related to the Jan. 6 riot and the attempts to overturn the 2020 election.”

The story of Jake Powell, a sort-of Kyrie Irving from the 1930s.

“As data continues to roll in, however, it seems quite likely that long COVID is a significant part of why the labor market is currently so tight: it has forced people out of the workforce, plunging them into financial turmoil, which is making it harder for employers to find workers. One international online study of nearly 4,000 long COVID patients found that 22 percent had left the workforce due to their symptoms.”

RIP, John Y. Brown, Jr., former Governor of Kentucky, NBA owner, KFC mogul, and husband of former Miss America Phyllis George.

Shame on you, CBS Sports. Shame on you.

RIP, Irene Cara, actor and singer best known for the theme songs to the movies Fame and Flashdance.

Cartoonists celebrate the 100th birthday of Charles M. Schulz, creator of “Peanuts” and an all-around beloved figure in the comics world.

Texas blog roundup for the week of November 28

The Texas Progressive Alliance wishes everyone a happy Thanksgiving as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for November 20

“Meet the Pollster Who Convinced Republicans There Would Be a Red Wave”.

“A Step Back from the Precipice on Election Denialism and a Slightly Rosier Forecast for a Free and Fair Election in 2024″.

“It’s tough to make predictions, especially about the future. How about if we waste less time trying: A proposal.”

“Your Creation Museum Report, 15 Years On”.

“Could a rebranded MAGA movement continue by just replacing the frontman? Is it still Journey without Steve Perry, or the Grateful Dead without Jerry Garcia? In a way, yes. MAGA could Jefferson Starship itself indefinitely as long as the crowds keep vibing. But without the original magic the venues tend to shrink, the fans get old, and it all starts to seem a little pathetic.”

“Voters Want Impartial Election Administration—And Tuesday’s Results Confirm It”.

“Here’s why 51 is much better than 50, even if we don’t keep the House. And no, it’s not (mostly), about Manchin and Sinema.”

The emoluments clause of the Constitution was there for a reason.

RIP, Budd Friedman, founder of The Improv comedy club. Mark Evanier shares some stories about him.

RIP, Keith Levene, guitarist and co-founder of the bands The Clash and Public Image Ltd.

RIP, Mehran Karimi Nasseri, Iranian man whose 18-year residence in Paris’ Charles de Gaulle Airport loosely inspired the 2004 Steven Spielberg film The Terminal.

RIP, Dan McCafferty, lead singer for the rock band Nazareth. I commend you to read this Popdose article, which I know I linked to back in the day when I was regularly doing Friday Random Tens, about the origin of Nazareth’s biggest hit, “Love Hurts”.

RIP, Virginia McLaurin, national treasure. If you don’t remember her name, go watch this and you will. She was 113 years old, born in 1909. What an amazing life.

“Pro-abortion rights ballot measures outperformed Democrats on the ballot in three states, while Republican politicians ran ahead of failed anti-abortion ballot measures in two states.”

“The numbers are in, and the Machiavellian scheme worked. In the six races where Democrats got the Republican nominee they wanted—after running reverse-psychology ads highlighting the candidates’ conservative bona fides—Democrats won.”

“Could I say something about Kari Lake, you guys?”

“Helmed by erratic new owner Elon Musk, Twitter is no longer fulfilling key obligations required for it to claim Ireland as its so-called main establishment under the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR)”. (More here.)

“Seeing as this the one moment where being a Grover Cleveland biographer has any social utility, let me save you all a lot of Googling: Cleveland and Trump are starkly dissimilar figures.”

“Trump’s announcement was exactly what it looked like: a desperate, low-energy attempt to head off 2024 GOP primary challengers; possibly ward off ongoing investigations into his seizure of classified documents, January 6th, and attempts to overturn 2020 vote results in Georgia; and consolidate his wavering support. He is too weak not to run; his dwindling political assets are still worth too much to abandon.”

“Ticketmaster might be used to criticism from advocates and Capitol Hill when it screws something up so publicly. But the company has never shaken a beehive quite like the Swifties. Swift’s fanbase is as rabid as they are loyal to the megastar, and the Eras presale nightmare focused the collective’s attention on a new enemy: Ticketmaster and its monopoly power.”

“Larry David sued for crypto ad in which he talked crap about crypto, which feels about right”.

RIP, Robert Clary, actor, singer, and Holocaust survivor.

“Pelosi is the strongest congressional leader I’ve ever seen. McCarthy is the weakest.”

“Hundreds of Twitter’s remaining employees have resigned ahead of Elon Musk’s “extremely hardcore” cultural reset of the company”.

When grifters get grifted.

Texas blog roundup for the week of November 14

The Texas Progressive Alliance is relieved that democracy is still a thing as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for November 13

“One of the cores of democracy is neighborhood trust. You need to trust others in your society and in your community for democracy to work. Period. When there’s a very high level of distrust, you will see a fracturing of community.”

“So there you have it. Banks charge higher swipe fees for reward cards—mostly paid by merchants—and then rebate that money in the form of rewards mostly paid to customers who are middle class and above. The net result is that richer, more sophisticated cardholders end up paying less than poorer, less sophisticated cardholders. And that’s before we even get to the higher interest rates they’re charged on unpaid balances, which is at least notionally justifiable.”

“The Disney Parks have seen better days. What was once a desirable, affordable vacation for some American middle class families has devolved into something prohibitively expensive and stressful. Every aspect of the Disney experience must be premeditated and scheduled to maximize its declining worth. But despite the backlash, the problem isn’t getting better.”

“Google is funneling revenue to some of the web’s most prolific purveyors of false information in Europe, Latin America and Africa, a ProPublica investigation has found. The company has publicly committed to fighting disinformation around the world, but a ProPublica analysis, the first ever conducted at this scale, documented how Google’s sprawling automated digital ad operation placed ads from major brands on global websites that spread false claims on such topics as vaccines, COVID-19, climate change and elections.”

I guess Tony Blair won’t be watching the latest season of The Crown.

It’s How Elon Is Screwing Up Twitter all the way down, isn’t it?

“Even if Trump never again holds public office, his anti-statist conspiratorial politics dominate contemporary Republicanism. This is bad news not just for public employees who have become targets in an increasingly scary culture war. It’s bad for the rest of us, too, because the services public employees provide will decline in quality. As loyalty to the regime becomes the key criterion for hiring, it will grow harder to attract good people into government.”

RIP, Leslie Phillips, British actor who was the voice of the Sorting Hat in the Harry Potter movies.

“The tale goes something like this: Some notable Twitter advertisers have paused their expenditures with the site. General Motors, General Mills, and Audi are some of them. But contrary to Musk’s version of events, the problem is less that leftists are bullying the company that makes Cheerios and more that Musk is not as good at business as he thinks he is. Advertisers don’t like to run their ads in places where they might appear alongside abuse, harassment, spam, racism, misogyny, slurs, and the like.”

“Musk’s fans see the billionaire as a visionary, but it’s worth noting that many casual observers—people whose only real understanding of Musk is as the guy who put the fancy electric cars on their streets—have also internalized the heuristic that he is Good at Business and the type of man who spends his waking moments dreaming of how to save humanity from its existential problems. But what the past two weeks demonstrate is that Musk is, at best, a mediocre executive—and undoubtedly a terrible, distracted manager.”

“While many of Musk’s detractors may hope the platform goes through the equivalent of thermonuclear destruction, the collapse of something like Twitter happens gradually. For those who know, gradual breakdowns are a sign of concern that a larger crash could be imminent. And that’s what’s happening now.”

“Want to know whether the charity organization, celebrity, political figure, reporter, or corporation you’re following on Twitter is the real one or an imitation identity meant to deceive you? There won’t be one. It appears there won’t be a way for Twitter itself to differentiate between the real and fraudulent accounts, either. There’s little chance that’s a salvageable situation, when it comes to the FTC consent agreement Twitter is required to follow. What turns this into a potential multi-billion dollar catastrophe is the strong suggestion, from Musk, that his own actions are intended to allow Twitter to financially profit from fraudulent user behavior.”

“But Musk should be afraid of the FTC, for no other reason than that the agency can fine Twitter literally billions of dollars—and Musk’s own message to employees this week suggests that the company is already in significant financial trouble. So rockets notwithstanding, Musk should tread cautiously with the FTC. The rest of us should tread cautiously with turning over sensitive information (like, say, credit card numbers or bank account information) to Twitter at a moment when the company seems more insecure than ever.”

(Yes, I know, it’s another Musk-and-Twitter-palooza. What can I say, I’m having fun. I promise I’ll eventually stop.)

The Speaker math for Kevin McCarthy could be very dicey if the Republicans do win the House.

“Kentuckians voted down an anti-abortion proposal that would have amended the state constitution so that it does not protect the right to an abortion, Decision Desk HQ projects. It is now the second conservative state this year to reject such a proposal.”

“I heard from women who spent the entire summer post carding and phone banking and registering voters, post Dobbs, and most of them never doubted for a moment that they were invisible to pollsters and pundits and journalism as it is currently practiced. The spiraling story about who cared about what didn’t stop them. Bless them, every one.”

RIP, Harold Cook, longtime and well-loved Democratic strategist, pundit, blogger, storyteller, and all around good guy. I got to hang with him once in person but engaged with him online for years. He was a hoot and a mensch and will be greatly missed. I commend you to read Rachel Truair’s eulogy as well.

“If Mitch McConnell Is Still in the Minority It’s His Own Damn Fault“.

“State legislative races are on pace to be the highlight of the Democratic ballot. If Democrats hold on to Nevada, this will be the first time the party in power hasn’t lost a single chamber in the midterms since 1934, according to the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee.”

“Alex Jones ordered to pay an additional $473 million to Sandy Hook families“. This is all good, but I would like to see some actual money get taken away from him. It’s just headlines and things he can continue to thumb his nose at until he is made to feel the pain.

RIP, Gallagher, prop comedian known for smashing watermelons as part of his act. Mark Evanier has a cool Gallagher story to tell.

And just like that, after a week that can’t even be described as chaotic because that doesn’t begin to capture it, RIP, Twitter Blue. We’ll always have the mocking tweets.

Texas blog roundup for the week of November 7

The Texas Progressive Alliance really hopes you voted and voted wisely as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for November 7

“In both instances, no significant damage was done to the paintings. The question is: was any harm done to them, the people being glued (and gluing)? Upon reading about these incidents, we couldn’t help but wonder: what are the mechanics behind gluing oneself to something? How long is it supposed to last? How does it feel? How do you unglue yourself?”

“How A Conspiracy-Theorizing Documentary Fueled Voter Intimidation In Arizona”.

A long thread of awesome and iconic tweets. Enjoy while you can.

“Putin, as leader of the leading natural gas exporter in the world, has managed to accomplish what climate scientists and activists have unsuccessfully lobbied for over the past 20 years: Created a peak target in fossil fuel consumption worldwide, and driven a more rapid shift to renewables and other cleaner technologies such as wind, solar and nuclear power.”

“Elon Musk (and his consortium of much smaller investors) now owns Twitter. We need to take seriously the possibility that this will end up being one of the funniest things that’s ever happened.”

Also, too: Elon Musk’s deep abiding love for free speech, as long as that speech isn’t a criticism of him or anything he does.

“The essential truth of every social network is that the product is content moderation, and everyone hates the people who decide how content moderation works.”

“But now for the caveat: If we see mass layoffs and/or resignations, I think the whole company is doomed from the start. No matter Musk’s big vision, you need a highly skilled, knowledgeable workforce capable of (re)building a viable platform and responding to EU obligations. Without it, I think the company’s toast. In probably relatively short order.”

“Maybe Musk knows more than I do, but the verified users are the only people we know aren’t trolls, bots, or imposters (it’s why the blue checkmark system was originally created), so I have no idea how this would combat trolls and bots. If he wanted to do that, he’d need to charge everyone else $8 a month, except they wouldn’t pay it.”

Hollywood’s Twitter Exodus: Who Has Quit, Who Has Threatened To Quit And Who Refuses To Leave”.

“Twitter is instead the equivalent of putting an anarchist crust-punk from Seattle into the same room as a Kappa Alpha alum from Auburn and watching them talk about politics all day. Of course, they would probably rip each other’s heads off. Now, imagine watching a thousand versions of that all day. It would make you think the world is crazy. There’s your issue.”

“Instead of making Twitter a more desirable corner of the internet, Musk wants to pull more money out of existing users by threatening to make the platform worse for those who don’t pay up. He is using mostly sticks, with a side of small carrots that may not even be carrots. If Musk wants Twitter to start printing cash, he is in trouble. There is a reason the company’s old board of directors was so eager to unload the company onto him. But if he is to have any chance of making Twitter more profitable, he should start by making it a better place to spend time. What he’s unveiled so far doesn’t do that.”

“The man really thought he could flip a switch and overpower Twitter with Dad jokes and desperation. It’s almost like content moderation is not controlled by the forces of free speech but by market forces. Ain’t that a kick in the ass for the world’s richest man?”

“Five former Twitter employees who were fired on Thursday have already filed a lawsuit against the social media company for failing to adhere to California’s WARN Act, a law that requires large employers to provide 60 days of notice to employees before mass layoffs. And the lawsuit even calls out another company run by Elon Musk for doing the exact same thing.”

(Yes, I know, this is all way too much attention to that idiot who now owns Twitter. I’m just enjoying a little schadenfreude, which I fully admit may turn into an ice cold take someday, if he’s even a fraction as smart as he thinks he is. I’ll take that chance.)

Want to know more about the opening credits to Season 2 of The White Lotus? There you go.

RIP, Shirley Baskin Familian, public TV pioneer, multimedia artist, philanthropist and businesswoman who was involved in the founding of Baskin-Robbins Ice Cream.

“How threats against women in power are tied to threats against democracy”.

“Judge Allows Poll Workers’ Entire Defamation Case Against Rudy Giuliani Over False Election Fraud Claims to Move Forward to the Discovery Phase”. GOOD!

So, how much rainbow fentanyl did the kids get trick or treating this year?

RIP, Julie Powell, author of “Julie and Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen”, the book on which the movie Julie and Julia was based.

“Recently I learned about a man who has trained 1,000+ people to block wind and solar projects. I read through all his training materials, presentations, and seminars. Here’s what I learned about him and how his students plan to “win the war on clean energy.””

Everything You Need to Know About ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ On Its 25th Anniversary”.

“ESPN has hired Becky Hammon as a studio analyst for its NBA coverage, the latest stop in an extraordinary career for the former player and current coach.”

“An evangelical GOP House candidate in Texas wrote a novel about Anne Frank finding Jesus“. The candidate in question is the Republican running in CD0. I can’t get this story out of my mind, but I also just didn’t want to write a whole post about it. So I’m noting it here, which will allow me to finally close that tab. Also, I should note that this story was broken by a national outlet, while the Houston Chronicle has not had anything on it, not even a short piece noting the JTA’s story. Local media is unquestionably valuable, and good local media coverage is getting rarer, with real effects on society and democracy. We’re in a pretty good place in Houston, with several smaller sites enhancing the generally good work the Chron does. But I think they fell down on this one. Maybe it’s not the most important story, especially in this election, but it deserved some coverage. And this guy also ran for Congress in 2020, when his ridiculous book was published. We should have known about this before now.

RIP, Ray Guy, three-time Super Bowl champion with the Raiders and the first punter to make the Pro Football Hall of Fame. His stats look pedestrian now, but he changed how the position was played, and as you can see from the embedded highlight here, he was a heck of an athlete.

RIP, Lois Curtis, successful plaintiff in a landmark civil rights case for people with disabilities.

Texas blog roundup for the week of October 31

The Texas Progressive Alliance says that the only thing scarier than Halloween is not voting. Think about that while you read this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for October 30

Yeah, Bill Murray is a jackass and has been for a long time. I’m just going to have to accept that.

Happy 100th birthday, BBC.

“I happen to agree that there has been, in fact, a Mitt Romney radicalization process. But it is quite the opposite of what this narrative suggests. It isn’t rooted in Republican anger on behalf of Romney but in Republican anger against Romney, and over time that anger has grown to be not just against Romney the man but also against the values he represents.”

“Which means the Sandy Hook families, who are now creditors for both Jones and Free Speech Systems, could find themselves in a very odd position: Trying to get their hands on all of Jones’s personal assets while also working within a legal system that is designed to keep Free Speech Systems and Infowars — which only really works if Jones works there — up and running.”

“We’re about two weeks away from Election Day, but some voter intimidation efforts are already underway in Arizona, painting an ominous picture of just how far some Big Lie activists may go to push their debunked voter fraud narrative during the midterms.”

Two words: Robot tentacles. Yeah, I don’t know either.

“In advance of election night, I think it’s useful to calibrate expectations to the fundamentals, not to polls or vibes.”

“It would be hard to find a clearer example than this of the difference between government negotiation of drug prices and the private market.”

“States passing abortion bans reflect what only a small minority of their constituents actually want”.

Turns out, HR Haldeman was absolutely right about Billy Graham. And once you know that, it’s a lot easier to understand how the much-beloved Billy Graham begat his shitbird son Franklin.

Long live Larry the Cat, who has now served as Chief Mouser to the UK Cabinet Office through the terms of four prime ministers. And counting.

RIP, Ash Carter, former Secretary of Defense who opened military combat jobs to women and ended a ban on transgender people serving in the military.

RIP, Jules Bass, animator, producer, director and composer who partnered with Arthur Rankin Jr. on the stop-motion and animated holiday TV specials Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, Frosty the Snowman and Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town.

“This idea that vote by mail is a form of voting that inherently advantages Democrats is just flat wrong. It is a mode of voting that creates opportunities for political parties to mobilize their supporters.”

“Let’s talk about why the price of gas drives people crazy”.

RIP, Jerry Lee Lewis, rock and roll pioneer and Hall of Famer.

Lucianne Goldberg has died. I have no further comment.

Texas blog roundup for the week of October 24

The Texas Progressive Alliance exhorts everyone to go vote as they bring you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for October 23

Disbar them all.

“I believe the House Jan. 6 committee’s legacy will depend on how its in-depth rendering of the events surrounding the 2020 election and the ensuing insurrection is presented, repeated and understood by successive generations of Americans.”

The full impact of voter ID laws on trans people and others remains difficult to measure. But voting rights advocates say potential voters across the country face an uneven patchwork of policies — and obstacles.”

Lock him up.

“So, yes, Tuberville is a flat-out racist. We knew this. Been knowing it. Saying that isn’t even controversial anymore. But there’s an even larger story here. Tuberville spent decades as a college coach, both at the University of Mississippi and Auburn. How many college football coaches are like Tuberville? How many do what he apparently did: make millions off the labor of Black athletes while apparently hiding their disdain for those same Black people?”

“NBC News found one example of a school district keeping cat litter on campus. The Jefferson County School District has had classrooms with cat litter since 2017, in case students are locked in a classroom during a shooting. Jefferson County is where Columbine is located.”

Maybe the Cartoon Network isn’t quite dead yet.

Wishing Dikembe Mutombo all of the best.

RIP, Jim McDivitt, NASA astronaut who led Apollo and Gemini missions.

Lock him up. Like, for way longer than that.

“After a February 25, 2020, CDC telebriefing ‘angered’ President Trump, the White House wrested control of coronavirus communications away from CDC and mandated on February 26 that all media requests related to the pandemic be approved by the Office of the Vice President prior to release”.

The misogyny-to-fascism pipeline.

RIP, Charley Trippi, NFL and College Football Hall of Famer who had over 1000 yards rushing, receiving, and passing in his career. He played on the last Cardinals team to win an NFL championship, in 1947.

Lock him up for longer than that.

Make him testify.

“Biden administration officials are discussing whether the US should subject some of Elon Musk’s ventures to national security reviews, including the deal for Twitter Inc. and SpaceX’s Starlink satellite network, according to people familiar with the matter.” Yes, yes they should.

RIP, Daniel R. Smith, one of the last surviving children of a formerly enslaved American.

Texas blog roundup for the week of October 17

The Texas Progressive Alliance has three cheers for a jury in Connecticut along with its weekly roundup.

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Weekend link dump for October 16

Don’t let the bastards get you down, Kate Starbird. Hang in there and I hope there’s an effective way to fight back as well.

“As voters cast ballots in the 2022 midterms, they face significant changes in the voting rights landscape since 2020. 2021 was a record-breaking year for legislative activity around voting rights, and many of the same trends have continued into 2022.”

All efforts to avoid the future robot apocalypse are appreciated.

“The lies are louder. The facts are not getting across.”

“Scientists Have Discovered a New Set of Blood Groups“.

“However, once I’ve smoothed out the lines a bit and added trendlines, the conclusion is pretty obvious: on a national level, fear of crime is either flat or going down. There’s no sign at all that people are increasingly interested in security equipment.”

“These views do not square with cold utilitarianism. You can’t insist that every fertilized egg is a human being and then fail to condemn Herschel Walker, who, from that perspective, almost surely paid to kill another human being. At least, you can’t do so and expect to retain any moral high ground.” As Amanda Marcotte points out, the kids – as in, the kids raised in these “pro-life” households, whose parents are now defending Herschel Walker, are watching. And a lot of them get very disillusioned by this.

RIP, Nikki Finke, entertainment journalist and founder of Deadline.

Always be claiming to be victimized. It’s the manly thing to do.

The Flintstones was not a documentary.

If Game of Thrones was a “Homeric tale”, then House of the Dragon is more of a Greek tragedy. I’ve really enjoyed it so far.

“A Study Finally Shows Just How Much Deadlier COVID Has Been for Republicans“. Blame anti-vaxxers.

That’s right, you’re not from Texas. Or so the lawsuit says.

Wait, Tulsi Gabbard still exists?

Boy, The Former Guy sure does like surrounding himself with shady characters. I wonder why?

“What does Sean Hannity find so offensive about unconditional love exactly?”

RIP, Angela Lansbury, legendary star of stage, screen, and TV. Her passing caused Jerry Orbach to trend on Twitter, as people were amazed to discover that Lennie Briscoe and the dad from “Dirty Dancing” was also the voice of Lumiere from “Beauty and the Beast”. Here’s a fantastic video clip of Lansbury and Orbach recording “Be Our Guest”, which I guarantee you will enjoy.

“Connecting reparations — the concept of compensating Black Americans who are the descendants of enslaved people for the inhumane suffering of their ancestors — with people who commit crimes https://www.cnn.com/2022/10/10/opinions/tommy-tuberville-reparations-democrats-crime-obeidallah/index.html — and way beyond a dog whistle.”

“According to a consumer survey published by accounting firm KPMG, 20 percent of respondents say inflation has already inspired them to cancel at least one streaming service. And if inflation continues at its current rate, 37 percent of respondents said they plan to drop one or all of their streaming subscriptions. (What will they do with themselves?)”

I would have really preferred to live in a world in which Bill Murray was not a jackass and a sex pest. Alas, that is not the world I live in.

“While there have been conflicting reports on the impact of the Jan. 6 hearings, our polling has been more conclusive. Since the hearings began, more Americans have come to view Jan. 6 as a violent attempt to overthrow the government and more Americans now see the committee’s findings as legitimate.”

Now this is justice.

“What was once believed unthinkable is now a reality: Netflix with ads is here.”

RIP, Bruce Sutter, Hall of Fame relief pitcher primarily for the Cubs and Cardinals.

RIP, Robbie Coltrane, BAFTA-winning actor best known as Hagrid from the Harry Potter movies.

All the owners hate Dan.”

Texas blog roundup for the week of October 10

The Texas Progressive Alliance is ready for some MLB playoffs as it brings you this week’s roundup.

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Weekend link dump for October 9

“Even if the Equal Rights Amendment were somehow ratified today, this Supreme Court wouldn’t care.”

“But recently, this tidal wave of backlash against hormonal birth control has made its way into another sphere of influence. Anti-abortion activists—many of whom are morally opposed to the idea of contraception because they consider it a form of abortion or just morally wrong—have found that wellness influencers, many of them pro-choice, are a boon to their cause. While previous generations of activists saw picketing outside abortion clinics as their only option for engaging the public, today’s crusaders are also using social media to win followers, incorporating wellness messages into confessional videos and stylish memes to convince their audience that hormonal contraception is not only sinful but also unhealthy.”

“Actor Bruce Willis Becomes First Celebrity to Sell Rights to Deepfake Firm“. That…doesn’t actually sound great to me. But maybe I’m wrong.

TV shows get gun violence wrong. Color me shocked.

“In the past decade, several studies have suggested that lawmakers are more likely to take action on climate change when they — and their constituents — have had to deal with the disastrous consequences of previously doing nothing.”

“Cape Coral is a microcosm of Florida’s worst impulse: selling dream homes in a hurricane-prone flood zone. But people still want them.”

“Medical groups ask Justice Department to investigate threats against hospitals over gender-affirming care”.

“Since the January 6th insurrection, more than two thirds of the corporations who announced they would no longer support members of Congress who refused to certify Trump’s loss have abandoned their commitment. And many others have continued to fund sedition without batting an eye.”

RIP, Sacheen Littlefeather, activist for Native Americans who declined Marlon Brando’s Oscar for “The Godfather” on his behalf at the 1973 Academy Awards. The Academy issued her a formal apology just this past June.

RIP, Loretta Lynn, country music icon and the subject of Coal Miner’s Daughter.

“The Biden administration is issuing fresh guidance reinforcing the legal protections for pregnancy and abortion under Title IX“. I can almost feel the lawsuit that will be filed over this.

Sorry, Mikey. Actually, not sorry at all.

RIP, Tiffany Jackson, former All-American basketball player at the University of Texas who went on to play nine seasons in the WNBA.

“That’s right, Scoob fans, Velma is now officially a lesbian!”

RIP, Jim Redmond, father of Olympic runner Derek Redmond, who memorably helped his injured son cross the finish line in the 1992 Games.

RIP, Ramiro “Ramsey” Muñiz, activist and first Hispanic to have his name on a Texas general election gubernatorial ballot. Stace noted this earlier.

“Abortion is murder…until there’s a Senate seat on the line, apparently.” Never believe a word these people say about their “deeply held values“.

“How long have conservatives been screaming about this? Since the ’80s? The ’50s? The Great Depression? And nothing has ever happened. But they keep screaming and screaming anyway without even a shred of evidence that the national debt is actually a problem.”

“This is when I asked again if someone would put me to sleep. A surprise hysterectomy is not something one generally wants to hear and see and, unfortunately due to all the cauterizing, smell.”

Do better, Great British Bake Off. We deserved a lot better than that.

The store where we buy our dog food is a delightful old un-air-conditioned shack, just north of downtown and just next to our chi-chi neighborhood. In business since 1928 selling animal feed and various farm animals (yes, in the heart of urban Houston), owned by the same (male) couple since 1991, it’s been the place to go for backyard farmers for decades. They’re moving to a new location, thankfully not far away, and while it will be weird to not have them in their current space, I’m just glad they will continue to exist. Shop local, y’all.

RIP, Judy Tenuta, groundbreaking, accordion-playing, Grammy-nominated comedienne.

If you’ve heard about some controversy involving people who write books about Westeros with George R.R. Martin and wanted to know more about it, here’s the very deep dive that you need.

“The muted response from some of the country’s most virulent critics of abortion is an instructive reminder that for many conservatives — particular conservative politicians — opposition to abortion has little to do with morality, and everything to do with politics.”

If you’re lucky enough to catch a historic home run, make sure you know a good accountant.

Texas blog roundup for the week of October 3

The Texas Progressive Alliance wishes all obstacles could be batted aside with a NASA satellite as it brings you this week’s roundup.

Off the Kuff follows up his mockery of Ken Paxton with a note about what Paxton was really running from and why it mattered.

SocraticGadfly talks about Judge Pitman screwing over third-party candidates in Texas.

Stace reminds us that Greg Abbott’s border sideshow continues to cause death and waste.

===============

And here are some posts of interest from other Texas blogs.

Houstonia reports on Houston’s Afro-Latino Garifuna community and how it’s keeping its culture alive.

Melissa Fletcher Stoeltje remembers the impact of legal abortion with no regrets.

The Dallas Observer finds your new favorite subreddit.

In The Pink Texas goes back to her roots by recasting a political saga as a rom-com.

Your Local Epidemiologist brings a fall bivalent booster update.

Michael Li explains the Alabama redistricting case now before SCOTUS and its possible implications for the Voting Rights Act.

Weekend link dump for October 2

“Whether The Jetsons was a blueprint for the future or simply a prediction of it, it foreshadowed many of the products and services we now use today.”

“Fifty years ago this spring, I was on the original daytime show with Art Fleming in New York.”

Clearly, the lesson here is to not mess with Jon Bon Jovi.

“How Roberto Clemente Harnessed Celebrity To Change America”.

Just a nice story about Bob Keeshan, better known as Captain Kangaroo, as told by Mark Evanier.

“It’s retraumatizing over and over again, and for what? How many movies/shows/documentaries do we need?”

Who is Perla? And where is Perla?

“But current technology can reveal a person’s transgender identity by linking seemingly anonymized information such as their neighborhood and age to discover that their sex was reported differently in successive censuses. The ability to deanonymize gender and other data could spell disaster for trans people and families living in states that seek to criminalize them.”

RIP, NFL Pro Bowl, an event no one really cared about.

“Netflix is no longer pursuing a copyright lawsuit against the creators of The Unofficial Bridgerton Musical.”

Lock him up.

I don’t know if I should be disappointed with Kim Mulkey for her shameful refusal to support Brittney Griner, or if this is always who she was and I’m just now seeing it.

Please don’t be mean to King Charles, The Crown.

RIP, Joe Bussard, music historian who helped preserve a ton of early 20th century American records.

“A subreddit account has decided to do some masterclass trolling in order to test Gov. Greg Abbott with this horrendous law.”

RIP, Coolio, Grammy-winning musician best known for “Gangsta’s Paradise”.

A few alternate email signatures to try.

A classically-trained flute player plays a flute. Some people find a reason to object to that. No, it makes no sense to me either.

RIP, Hector Lopez, two-time World Series champion with the Yankees and the first Black manager in Triple A ball.