Sometimes the Good Guys Win

HankP's picture


Two good stories for a change, from my very own home state of Washington.




(courtesy Meryl Schencker Photography)


This is a picture of one of the hundreds of gay couples who applied for a marriage license starting at midnight last night, as the passage of gay marriage in Washington State in the election took effect.


Also, a few blocks away ...



this is part of a group of several hundred people smoking marijuana at Seattle Center last night, as the legal possession and use of marijuana also took effect last night at midnight. Technically, smoking in public is illegal (just like drinking in public) but a law passed in Seattle several years ago makes enforcement of marijuana laws the Seattle Police Departments lowest priority.


If you had asked me ten years ago if these two laws would pass, I'd probably guess that they would at some point but that I wouldn't live to see it. So that just goes to show that hope is not pointless, and sometimes things do get better.




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A sort of win for the good guys




And he takes some small steps in the right direction: He allows the inflation ceiling to rise from 2% to 2.5% and ties easing to a 6.5% unemployment rate.


These measures are too mild in response to 4+ years of misunderstanding the need for aggressive policy, but they're better than nothing.


Can we get the rest of our government officials --both Democrats and Republicans -- to make the same admission?

I'm Sure Republicans Will Have No Problem. . .

M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .voicing the notion that The Chosen One and his minions have been lying about the health of the economy for four years for political gain. Thanks for the suggestion!

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Many newly (re)elected GOP


Many newly (re)elected GOP governors might have something to say about that.  As usual, whatever makes you happy.

The Fed is independent of government and party

HankP's picture

and I believe you should change that moniker to "the Twice Chosen One".


I blame it all on the Internet

No hablo wingnut


Where's the pejorative behind calling Obama the Chosen One? He was chosen by popular vote twice, and overwhelmingly won the electoral college. Plus his favorability rating is on the rise in a major way... think I read 58% since the election. The GOP is about to administer a major FAIL to its crusty credentials with this fiscal cliff/debt limit nonsense. Look at how this stuff polls. The republicans are going to get spanked -- hard -- in the next few months. Almost makes we wonder if there aren't some Silicon Valley democrats who figured out an algorithm for eleven dimensional chess.


Black Jimmy Carter is eating your lunch, and you jokingly call him the Chosen One?


I guess there were a lot of folks who thought Nate Silver was a lying communist fag, too.

Na wingnut moteyo

brutusettu's picture

The Korean probably trumps the Spanish right now, PSY apparently writes his own lyrics that shows he hates all soldiers in this beautiful country for no reason, so "na wingnut moteyo" is more topical.

I think you responded to the wrong person

HankP's picture

I personally like "the Twice Chosen One" because it reminds Republicans that a socialist Marxist fascist Kenyan kicked their asses twice in a row.


I blame it all on the Internet

I bet


there's a lot of lonely Abba video links in the grudge folders of wingnut computer users across this great land of ours.

Heading out to the magnetic highway

brutusettu's picture

Voyager 1



The probe, launched 35 years ago to study the outer planets, is now about 11 billion miles (18 billion km) from Earth. At that distance, it takes radio signals traveling at the speed of light 17 hours to reach Earth. Light moves at 186,000 miles per second).

Voyager 1 will be the first manmade object to leave the solar system.

Scientists believe Voyager 1 is in an area where the magnetic field lines from the sun are connecting with magnetic field lines from interstellar space. The phenomenon is causing highly energetic particles from distant supernova explosions and other cosmic events to zoom inside the solar system, while less-energetic solar particles exit.

"It's like a highway, letting particles in and out," lead Voyager scientist Ed Stone told reporters at an American Geophysical Union conference in San Francisco.

Scientists don't know how long it will take for the probe to cross the so-called "magnetic highway," but they believe it is the last layer of a complex boundary between the region of space under the sun's influence and interstellar space.

Hank, I gotta ask about the picture


What does Meryl Schenker have against gays?  One would think that Schenker would have sought a more photogenic couple over the two guys from Brokeback Truckstop.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

They look pretty photogenic to me

HankP's picture

seem like a couple of pleasant older guys.


I blame it all on the Internet

Not their best angle.


Here's another shot, and you have to admit, them are two dapper motherf-um-newlyweds. Though to be fair this looks like it's after a wardrobe change. 


If I'm not mistaken, them outfits have a distinctly Southern, bourbon-sipping kinda vibe to em.


"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

Jordan, I think you could have made a case


for dapper until the guy on the right accessorized with....well, whateverthehell that bag is.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

*Scott Consults His Big Conspiracy Theory Checklist*

M Scott Eiland's picture

"Benjamin Harrison and Rutherford B. Hayes were secretly Highlander-style immortals and have been hiding in plain sight in the Pacific Northwest for the last century. . .confirmed!"

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Different take


On first glance I thought my suspicions about ZZ Top had been confirmed.

They are happy, and that's


They are happy, and that's what matters.  My, not original, take on gay marriage : they deserve to suffer just like the rest of us.  At the end of the day, marriage is about compromise and sacrifice for stability and a warm bed to sleep in at night.  In other words - it is a boringly conservative institution.  The best way to make gay people more conservative is (surprise!) let them marry.  Too bad the social conservatives couldn't wrap their heads around this idea.  


I think the acceptance of gay marriage heralds a real and powerful gay conservative movement.  They make more money than us breeders, on average, and will want to keep it as tax free as possible.  Social conservatism in its current form isn't going to last.

The good guys winning, polls edition


Pretty funny:


... Who would you most like to see Nikki Haley appoint to replace Jim DeMint?

Stephen Colbert .............................................. 20%
Jeff Duncan..................................................... 5%
Trey Gowdy..................................................... 14%
Henry McMaster ............................................. 8%
Mick Mulvaney ................................................ 4%
Jenny Sanford................................................. 11%
Mark Sanford .................................................. 8%
Tim Scott......................................................... 15%
JoeWilson...................................................... 5%
Someone else/Not sure .................................. 11%

Pretty disappointing


that they didn't even include Alvin Greene in the poll. 

There's something not right with Greene

brutusettu's picture

and it's probably all Demint's doing if Greene is correct.

who's that?


Some libertarian?

So you favored Demint in 2010?



I guess I didn't pay attention to that race


2010 was hard to focus on if you leaned left.

Hank, not for nuthin'


and I know your religious bona fides are out of date, but for the love of Jeebus, all things holy, children, and chocolate chip cookies, could you change your avatar? Retarded squirrel cannibals are so last year.



In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

It's just a teddy bear

HankP's picture

with human teeth. Sweet dreams.


I blame it all on the Internet

My Mother is an Art School Grad


And back in the day one of her colleagues gifted her a sculpture. It was a life-sized infant girl sitting in a wooden high chair, dressed in a pink dress with leggings and bloomers, little black baby shoes, and a pink floppy hat. The baby girl's head and hands were made of clay and flesh painted.


The child was in some distress (hungry perhaps? unhappy with the meal on offer?), and was sculpted mid-scream, her face contorted with the effort of her wail, her eyes squenched tight, her lips pulled wide to the glossy rim of her little clay skull, revealing a mouth studded with real human baby teeth.


She sat in the entryway for years, a warm greeting to all of my mother's guests. 

Dude, if you knew what haunted my dreams.


1. If Mrs Cuddly actually found out that I think our neighbor is hot.
2. Whiskey was made illegal.
3. No sh*t, verifiable proof that smoking cigars means that deep down one was really gay.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

I'm afraid #3 is true

HankP's picture

but on the bright side you can now fly to Seattle to get married.


I blame it all on the Internet

I wonder what will happen to WA's and CO's weed laws


The feds are going to come down hard is my prediction. There's simply too much money involved in the war on drugs not to aggressively assert fed power.


Thanks are due especially to justices Kennedy and Scalia, for selectively applying their alleged federalist principles.

Catchy, wouldn't thanks be especially due to the executive


of the government that would (and has elsewhere) come down hard.  Wouldn't having a party that equates 'federalist principles' with klan membership be part of the problem?  The point is that this isn't a righty/lefty Democrat/Republican thing, it's an authoritarian/liberal (classical definition) thing.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

you're right - Obama deserves special criticism


for bringing the hammer down on CA mary jane dispensaries already and for any actions the feds are likely to take in future.


The number of people in US prisons today for non-violent drug offenses is larger than the entire US prison population in 1982. 


... I bet we could easily save the government as much money through increased tax receipts and law enforcement resources by legalizing pot as we could by raising medicare's eligibility age by one year.


Plus I'll bet MJ legalization polls better than slashing medicare.  

Shyeeeeet, don't ask me about how something polls.


I'd have figured pot legalization would have cleared hurdles maybe a decade before gay marriage yet gay marriage is more legal in more States as I type. Here's what I don't get. To date I have met every combination of folks on gay rights and mj legalization except one; folks in favor of legalized gay marriage but not in favor of legalized mj. How is it that the herb ain't legal?

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

The One Has an Open and Out


constituency and the other doesn't.


Put another way advocating for Gay Marriage doesn't draw the attention of authorities (much). There's nothing illegal about that activity, and it's not fronting for an activity that is illegal (black market same-sex marriages?).


Meanwhile, advocating for herb legalization does draw the attention of the authorities. There's nothing illegal about advocating, but it's probably fronting for a currently illegal activity. So while most folks are vaguely in favor of legalization, the cost to actively support the change with time and money is just a little bit higher.


Plus, it's drug use, not marriage. Nobody gets addicted to marriage.

I'm an old fashioned leftist I guess


The difference is money.


There's a massive prison-industrial and law enforcement complex that stands to lose its raison d'être if weed is legalized and therefore its funding.


Nobody stands to lose any money if gay marriage is legalized, so it gets fast-tracked.


Let your leftist mind say: "corrupt people motivated by greed again standing in the way of justice"

Yeah, This Too


There is a lot of institutional resistance (we're making money here, boyo!) to change as well.


My response was from the POV of individual voters. 


Allowing gay marriage also spreads the reach of a more or less conservative institution, which strengthens the capitalist state*, rather than weakens it.




*Just trying to maintain some leftist cred.

What you say is true, but from a perspective of


self-interest drug legalization should be cleaning house.  If you're not gay then the status of gay marriage doesn't matter.  You neither gain nor lose regardless of the outcome.  But drug laws cost you real dollars in enforcement, incarceration, medical costs, associated crime etc.  That's concrete, real dollars and cents, oh BTW, all to make a miniscule dent in drug trafficking and use.  Now supposing you get beyond the spreadsheet and look at 'human costs'.  Nothing close to a comparison, drug legalization mops the floor with gay marriage.  I know it's not an either/or thing but I present it that way for comparison.

I'm not gay and I have no desire to use any drug that doesn't pour from a bottle so I have no personal dog in the fight while supporting both initiatives.  But I can plainly see that the war on drugs is killing us while same-sex marriage isn't.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Umm, if you accept a genetic basis

mmghosh's picture

for human sexuality, you could argue that not forcing people into heterosexual marriage would allow those genetically inclined not to do so - and consequently drop them out of the gene pool.


Logically, then, social conservatives should support this trend.

freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Yeah, but why would I argue that?


My argument is that of the two issues one directly benefits ~3% of the population the other directly benefits ~95% of the population.  Yet the issue that directly benefits a smaller portion of the population gains ground while the other flounders.  Also, FWIW, I'm not so much of a social conservative.  Perhaps the issue I'm most outspoken on is gun rights and my position is far far more liberal than your typical liberal.  I'm on par with most liberals when it comes to drug legalization.  I'm in favor of letting adults marry who they want though I get there through a limited govt approach rather than a progressive one.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 


HankP's picture

I doubt it's anywhere near that high as far as direct involvement is concerned. More important, I doubt people think it affects them anywhere near that level. For the over 65 set it's still about those damn hippies.


I blame it all on the Internet

95% was a stab, simply acknowledging


that there are folks who benefit; the prisons, their corporate contractors/owners and unions, the police, the parole officers, the rehabilitators and social workers, the military developers who've found a market in policing, Giraldo Rivera and Steven Segal.  They all have a rice bowl that the war on drugs fills.  I'm not trying to make an issue of 5% or 3.7%, just pointing out that some benefit but that number isn't very big and the rest of us are paying for it.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

I was looking at it from the other direction

HankP's picture

in other words, while it affects 95% financially, it does so in a very obscure way. I was thinking that far fewer than 95% think it affects them since they don't smoke pot and don't care about pot smokers.


I blame it all on the Internet

Not Any More

M Scott Eiland's picture

Sperm and egg donation--not to mention surrogate mothers--have removed that little speed bump to reproductive freedom.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Isn't adoption more popular? n/t

mmghosh's picture


freedom is a fundamental value that does not need to be justified in terms of some other value like efficiency

Sure, If One Isn't Hung Up On Genetic Factors

M Scott Eiland's picture

For those who are--for whatever reason (including gays wanting to annoy religious people who gloat about them not being able to reproduce)--the new methods exist and are being used by increasing numbers of people.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Adoption requires


all kinds of approvals,  including interviews where one can get turned down for very subjective reasons that could easily be a cover for various biases.  I don't know what the law is as of today but until very recently, being gay or even just single was a legal reason to turn down an application.

Social conservatives are against that too nt

HankP's picture


I blame it all on the Internet


M Scott Eiland's picture

Thus my point.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

I Start from the Position that People are Lazy


Learning about those costs you mention takes effort, doing something about them takes more effort. Since those costs are shared among all of us and the paying of same is mostly out of view (the drug-tax man doesn't come to my door everyday and yank a fiver from my wallet), we're all pretty content to let inertia guide us along.


At voting time, if someone has managed to get the question on the ballot, a growing number of us can make the effort to vote in favor.


Meanwhile, the folks who wanted to get same-sex married had plenty of motivation (and plenty of resources) to get off their arses and make it happen. And so it did.

Yeah, that's a fair position to start from.


I started from the position that everyone but me is gay but yours might be a little more supportable....a little.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 


HankP's picture

"Obama deserves special criticism ...for any actions the feds are likely to take in future."


Let's wait until things happen before we criticize people about them, maybe?


I blame it all on the Internet

It's just a tense screwup


I have no idea how conservative Obama is going to go on MJ or the grand bargain. Maybe the base will get a good deal on both issues.


All I have access to is the trial balloons the admin is floating re: how VP Biden wants to crack down hard on MJ, how medicare eligibility is on the table, etc.


It's reasonable to believe that Obama would go fairly centirst if he can get away with it, but nobody knows what he'll be able to sell to the base or other players in the party.

See, that felt good didn't it?


Saying 'you're right' to me.  Now if I can get my wife to buy into this shidd'll be square.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Come to think of it*

brutusettu's picture

Isn't that particular drug something that actually does have medicinal value, but  is directly outlawed because it "has no medicinal value"??*



If so, how the heck does that happen.


*are there many Tea Party Enthusiast that have noticed and cared to make a peep?

Sometimes the good guys win, Egypt edition


Mursi reverses power grab amidst protests.


M Scott Eiland's picture

I was hoping that he'd be stubborn and end up at the end of a rope--it might have been an object lesson for the crazy Islamists. Does anyone *really* think that he won't pull the same crap later once his position is stronger?

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

Is that really what it's all about?


Of course Morsi's opponents & the world media see his declaration as a naked power grab; I have a feeling it's more about maneuvering to get the Egyptian Brotherhood's constitution ratified during the Dec 15 referendum. If that referendum fails, a new constituent assembly will be elected in March, with a chance for a more representative drafting body than the one that produced the current document. In other words, this is all about maneuvering to control the shape of the new state.


Juan Cole seems to think that Morsi's move was actually a countercoup, anticipating a move by Egypt's powerful judiciary to nullify some of his earlier decrees, and perhaps give itself veto power over the constitution itself. Some of the Mubarak-era jurists are not entirely friendly to the idea of a brand new, more representative state.

Morsi and his people are likely counting on the following:


1. The judges can no longer stop a Muslim Brotherhood constitution from going forward, since the constituent assembly has finished its work and there is no point in trying to dissolve it. In any case, many judges are so angry over the November 22 decree that they are on strike. So, Morsi gets to present his Brotherhood-crafted constitution to the people, and this is a win for him.

2. Morsi and his team know that the leftists, liberals and even many centrists will likely boycott the December 15 referendum. But this gesture is futile, and if they do boycott, it will simply ensure that the constitution passes.


3. The danger that the judiciary might try to undo the August 15 decree subordinating the military to the civilian president has subsided. And, if the new constitution passes, then the decree will be moot, since the constitution specifies the same arrangement. The justices cannot overrule a constitution that was voted in by a majority of those who voted.

In essence, Morsi no longer needs his November 22 decree, since the constitution itself will accomplish most of the work he wanted the decree to perform. When he issued it, he thought the constitution would not be finished for 3 months, and wanted to protect himself and it from Mubarak’s judges in the meantime. The accelerated timeline achieved by the Constituent Assembly, in finishing up the constitution so quickly, allowed Morsi to back down from his decree.


At the same time, he simply is not giving people enough time to absorb and debate the text of the new constitution, and to deliberate on how it might change their lives.

Egypt’s turmoil will continue as long as Morsi clings to this other authoritarian principle, of trying to ram his preferred constitution through.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

Of course it's a power struggle

HankP's picture

Morsi just hasn't learned the way we do it  in advanced democracies - state we'll adhere to the letter of the law and then ignore it.


I blame it all on the Internet

Hey Now

M Scott Eiland's picture

Bigamy is still illegal--at least until some clever judge pulls an emanation out of his penumbra and decides otherwise.

Washington did it the right way, and I suspect other states will start to follow.

. . .and Don Mattingly must be fired (bye Ned--don't let the door hit you in the @$$ on the way out!).

So, when are you and BD tying the knot?



In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

A friendly warning

HankP's picture

don't even try cutting in on Mrs. P's turf. She'll make Gen. Mrs. Cuddly look like Snow White. True story - she started a new job in July, and got her boss fired within a month.


Besides, I think the only knot BD would want to tie would be around my neck.


I blame it all on the Internet