Lees and Orts

Well…the site is now mostly alive.

As opposed to only MOSTLY dead. There’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Mostly dead is slightly alive, and thus tinkering continues in the background…

Lees and Orts

…was listening to the ReThugs’ Head Weasel this morning on NPR as I prepared the Astas’ breakfast. Basically, he just lied and lied and lied, without compunction or shame. The following is an even handed rebuttal…

Gobble Gobble

So, it’s been what – 2 months since the last mass ruminant hunt?

Which means we are soon due yet another NRA nut-job publicly displaying his constitutional right to bear arms, perhaps as soon as the fast approaching winter holidays.

Normally we would submit that this time of year would be immune, indeed inviolate from said insanity, but we don’t live in normal times, n’est-ce pas?

Which is just another way of saying don’t act all shocked if some city’s annual presentation of The Nutcracker 1 or A Christmas Carole 2 inadvertently takes center stage showcasing neither the Mouse King or Morley, but America’s insane love affair with guns.

Lees and Orts

And since it IS that time of the year…what we’re reading:

Lees and Orts

Jesus fuckin’ ke-rist! [SARCASM] Thanks, Obama! [/SARCASM]

“The targeted men were known as members of Al Qaida,” the activist said on condition of anonymity for security reasons.

Military officials in Yemen believe that hundreds of Al Qaida and Daesh militants who deserted their former bastions in Abyan, Hadramout and Shabwa provinces are hiding in scattered villages or on rough mountains in Baydha.

Local media reports have recently said that three Al Qaida leaders in Shabwa were killed in recent drone strikes in Baydha…

…The recent US drone strikes have also killed five civilians, displaced residents and caused panic in the two areas.

The activist said that five civilians, mainly farmers, were killed in three separate air strikes this week.

“The air strikes have caused great panic among civilians. The targeted areas have no functioning schools or hospitals,” the activist said.

It is worth noting that drone strikes have increased almost exponentially since The Idiot has taken office; we can expect ‘friendly fire’ on American soil soonish.

Lees and Orts

And finally, some appropriate entertinment:

Lees and Orts

Show 2 footnotes

  1. Coincidentally just down the road from Wayne LaPierre’s house.
  2. Which just so happens to be near Sen. Richard Burr’s (Second Biggest NRA Whore, total NRA donations though this year $6 + million. Only Sen. John “Dead Man Walking” received more blood money from the NRA.

Drones Over America

We’ve perhaps mentioned Obama’s Drones Over America program once or twice, n’est-ce pas? Well, guess what’s coming home to roost?

Obama does not deserve all of the blame for fortifying the national security state. He was aided by Democrats and liberals no longer willing to speak out against and oppose war and civil liberties abuses for fear of dinting their standard-bearer.

When George W. Bush was in power and set about creating this vast system and asserting the right to ever more extreme unilateral powers in the name of national security, Democrats were outraged, decrying these measures as an attempt to create an “imperial presidency.”

Seven years later, as one of their own was handed the reins to this extraordinary power, this outrage melted away. Rather than use Obama’s election to dismantle the national security state they had once railed against, Democrats allowed it to expand under Obama’s virtuous hand.

As Democratic leaders and liberal pundits ignored issues of civil liberties and presidential excess, relegating what was once a central critique of Bush into a niche issue, various commentators sounded the alarm over entrusting Obama with such expansive powers. In 2012, speaking about the Obama administration’s drone program, the ACLU’s Hina Shamsi stated:

“Anyone willing to trust President Obama with the power to secretly declare an American citizen an enemy of the state and order his extrajudicial killing should ask whether they would be willing to trust the next president with that dangerous power.”

A year later, the Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf wrote about the broad national security powers claimed by Bush and Obama, warning that such tools could eventually be misused by a tyrant:

“Yes, it could happen here, with enough historical amnesia, carelessness, and bad luck. We’re not special. Our voters won’t always pick good men and women to represent us. Some good women will be corrupted by power, and some bad men will slip through.”

Mexican Drone Ads for UBER

UBER dronesDrivers stuck in traffic in Mexico City lately have found themselves being buzzed by a fleet of sign-toting drones. “Driving by yourself?” some scolded in Spanish. “This is why you can never see the volcanoes” — a reference to the smog that often hovers over the mega-city and obscures two nearby peaks.

It wasn’t exactly a plea for environmentalism, though — it was an ad for UberPOOL, part of Uber’s big push into markets across Latin America.

Frankly we won’t believe they’re truly Mexican drones until we’ve seen one rolled & tucked and sporting pom-pom fringe. 1

Mexican Drone Ads for UBER

Show 1 footnote

  1. Tejano music emanating from the drone would help, too.


And you only have 20 seconds to comply…

It is now legal for law enforcement in North Dakota to fly drones armed with everything from Tasers to tear gas thanks to a last-minute push by a pro-police lobbyist.

The bill’s stated intent was to require police to obtain a search warrant from a judge in order to use a drone to search for criminal evidence. In fact, the original draft of Representative Rick Becker’s bill would have banned all weapons on police drones.

Then Bruce Burkett of the North Dakota Peace Officer’s Association was allowed by the state house committee to amend HB 1328 and limit the prohibition only to lethal weapons. “Less than lethal” weapons like rubber bullets, pepper spray, tear gas, sound cannons, and Tasers are therefore permitted on police drones.

Becker, the bill’s Republican sponsor, said he had to live with it.

“This is one I’m not in full agreement with. I wish it was any weapon,” he said at a hearing in March. “In my opinion there should be a nice, red line: Drones should not be weaponized. Period.”

Even “less than lethal” weapons can kill though. At least 39 people have been killed by police Tasers in 2015 so far, according to The Guardian. Bean bags, rubber bullets, and flying tear gas canisters have also maimed, if not killed, in the U.S. and abroad.

…Money’s no problem for the the Grand Forks County Sheriff’s Department, though: A California manufacturer loaned them two drones. Grand Forks County Sheriff Bob Rost said his department’s drones are only equipped with cameras and he doesn’t think he should need a warrant to go snooping.

…Rost said he needs to use drones for surveillance in order to obtain a warrant in the first place. “If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear,” Becker remembered opponents like Rost saying.

What could possibly go wrong, n’est-ce pas?