Patterico's Pontifications

6/3/2011

I Cannot Say With Certitude That This Will Not Offend You

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 11:59 pm

I do not recommend that you watch this if you are easily offended.

There. I warned you.

Interview with PatriotUSA76 Confirms: Any Fixation on Him Is a Red Herring

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:35 pm

Also, that he’s an incredibly annoying human being. But that’s really beside the point. People have a right to be annoying if they want. The takeaway from this interview (h/t happyfeet) is that Dan Wolfe, or whatever his real name is, is almost certainly a real person and not a Weiner paramour or corporate group of politicos or anything like that. The proof? No corporate group (or woman posing as a man) could impersonate such an irritating human being so successfully for that long.

I can’t excerpt it and do it justice. You’ll really just have to read it. Wolfe spends the first umpteen lines of the interview saying “LMAO” and “LOL” and “Fools!” and variants of Lee Stranahan is a jerk and No, you listen to me, I won’t answer your questions until I say this again for the fiftieth time: LMAO, LOL, Fools!, Lee Stranahan is really a jerk!

Jesus Christ he’s annoying. If a jilted lover or corporate entity is that good an actor, then I have to hand it to them, because I’m fooled.

I read the whole thing and by the end of it, I knew two things: 1) I do not like “Dan Wolfe” as a human being, at all, and 2) he’s totally right. All he did was retweet a disgusting tweet by a sitting Congressman. He seems to have no self-awareness as to how his bizarre behavior, explanations for that behavior, failure to explain what seemed like odd coincidences, and sudden radio silence contributed to an impression that he might have been behind all this. But in the end, examining him is almost certainly a red herring.

I’d still like to see more proof of the rumor he says was going around — and there also seem like there are more layers to the onion to peel back in light of Tommy Christopher’s expose of how a Wolfe compadre was contacting women who followed Weiner (they call it harassment). But I’m ready to close the book on any conspiracy theories involving Wolfe. He’s just a guy (albeit an irritating one) with a good explanation of why he saw the tweet and the background coincidences.

Helping me towards this conclusion were some explanations offered by commenter Maybee and others regarding how Wolfe could have been monitoring Weiner’s Twitter feed, from his page, without refreshing every two seconds. It’s too inside baseball to go into here, but if you’re interested you can read the thread here.

The Stranahan theory seemed to explain a lot of things, but Wolfe’s explanation — once he finally got around to it, after a million LMAOs and LOLs — makes more sense to me.

On his blog, Lee says Wolfe lied to people and threw them under the bus. I respect Lee but as has sometimes happened lately, his argument seems to assume familiarity with facts that he hasn’t explained, as it is so terse that it is unconvincing without further explanation.

UPDATE: Sheesh. If you have any doubt about what the Clintonista types can do to someone — and why PatriotUSA76 might be justifiably nervous about being investigated — check out what the Smoking Gun did to this guy, who apparently is connected with Patriot.

Yeah, I guess Patriot really did have something to worry about after all.

UPDATE x2: Eric Boehlert is on Twitter claiming that I said “Clintonista types” run the Smoking Gun. So I will state the obvious: that is not what I am saying. I am saying that someone fed that information to The Smoking Gun?

It is my working assumption that it is the Clintonista types.

Then again, there is much to this scandal we don’t know. So I’m going to stop opining and let it play out.

Does It Ever Cross Their Mind That Sarah Palin Might Actually Know Something?!

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 5:38 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

I barely have to write the post this time.  Did you hear?  Sarah Palin is sooooo stupid.  She believed that Paul Revere warned the British.  Here, watch:

Think Progress sniffs:

As Mediaite’s Frances Martel notes, Palin’s version “wasn’t exactly the official History Channel rendition.” It’s hard to imagine why Revere would warn the British of anything, or why he’d do it with bells and gun shots.

And as you can see, so did Frances Martel.  So did Nicole Belle of the eponymous Crooks and Liars:

Can we all just breathe a collective sigh of relief that this is not the person one heartbeat away from the Oval Office?

And Gawker:

Perhaps we should all brush up on our history of such events should we ever get trapped like this, but this may include some inaccuracies. Revere did not warn the British arm

Greg Sergeant:

Everyone has already had a grand old time mocking this video of Sarah Palin bungling her Paul Revere history, but I actually think it amounts to quite an eloquent statement. It’s as eloquent an argument as anyone could make that this woman really should not be treated by any of us as anything resembling a presidential candidate until it’s absolutely necessary — which is to say, until she actually runs for president.

And another two-fer, Steve Benen quoting another:

In case anyone needs a refresher, Tim Murphy explained, “This is actually the opposite of everything Paul Revere did.”

And Digby:

How can it possibly be that even one person in this country considers this person qualified for the presidency.

And I will break the embargo on linking to Politico, to quote Ben Smith:

Palin makes Bachmann look like Longfellow

Joe Gandelman, of the Moderate Voice:

DRAT! Why did I spend so much time studying history at Amity High School in Woodbridge, Connecticut when I could have made up my own version and gotten away with it.

Kathy from Comments from Left Field:

the news would be if she said anything about American history or foreign policy or ANYthing that made sense, right?

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Sidebar: You know where I am going with this, right?  Right?

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PSA: The Playstation Network is Fully Back, Offering “Sorry” Bribes

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 12:47 pm

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Yesterday the store was restored to the Playstation Network, which is good because there was a game for my PSP I was waiting to download (fine, call me a nerd).  And today they are providing their “welcome back” giveaways—basically bribes to say they are sorry about it all.  That went live today according to Joystiq.  And bluntly the games they are giving away are pretty impressive.  If I understand it right, you can get up to two PSP games and two PS3 games.

For the PS3 the choices are reported as:

  • Dead Nation
  • inFAMOUS
  • LittleBigPlanet
  • Super Stardust HD
  • Wipeout HD + Fury

These are all very good titles (by what I know and what I read).  For the PSP, we have:

  • LittleBigPlanet (PSP)
  • ModNation Racers (PSP)
  • Pursuit Force
  • Killzone Liberation

More substantively, they are offering a free year’s word of identity theft protection.  But you need to sign up reasonably soon to get that benefit.

And under the fold, I will tell you briefly what I think of the games, to the extent I know them.

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Sockpuppet Friday—the Bad Voice Acting Edition!

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 7:56 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Weinergate and the Edward indictment? You guys must be positively chomping at the bit for a sockpuppet thread. So here you go.

As usual, you are positively encouraged to engage in sock puppetry in this thread. The usual rules apply.

Please, be sure to switch back to your regular handle when commenting on other threads. I have made that mistake myself, a lot.

And remember: the worst sin you can commit on this thread is not being funny. And try to make your Weiner jokes original.

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And for this week’s Friday frivolity, you get this man, identified as Dean, doing face acting to bad video game voice acting. And they are pretty bad (although Dean is pretty good):

To be fair, I think often the voice acting is fine, it’s just that the writers gave the actors nothing to work with. And here’s more from the guy:

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Breaking: John Edwards Indicted

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 7:26 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Just got this from Cnn’s breaking news email.  Edwards has been indicted.  Expect updates.

Update: Surely this post from last night and the attached article will give you some insight into the issue.

Update (II): More here, and the indictment, here.  Thanks to Beldar in the comments for linking the indictment.

Update (III): If you are reading the indictment and are not sure who person A, B, C, etc. are, this article sorts it out for you.

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]

(Infuriating) Quote of the Day—Congress Can Regulate the Conduct of Everyone Who Makes Money and if You Don’t Like It, Earn Less Money

Filed under: General — Aaron Worthing @ 5:40 am

[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; if you have tips, please send them here.  Or by Twitter @AaronWorthing.]

Somehow this escaped my notice, but the Michigan Obamacare case has been before the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, and we have this fairly outrageous bit from the argument.  It’s not sound-bitey, but once you read it in context, your blood will boil…

During the Sixth Circuit arguments, Judge Jeffrey Sutton, who was nominated by President George W. Bush, asked [Acting Solicitor General* Neal Kumar] Kaytal if he could name one Supreme Court case which considered the same question as the one posed by the mandate, in which Congress used the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution as a tool to compel action.

Kaytal conceded that the Supreme Court had “never been confronted directly” with the question, but cited the Heart of Atlanta Motel case as a relevant example. In that landmark 1964 civil rights case, the Court ruled that Congress could use its Commerce Clause power to bar discrimination by private businesses such as hotels and restaurants.

“They’re in the business,” Sutton pushed back. “They’re told if you’re going to be in the business, this is what you have to do. In response to that law, they could have said, ‘We now exit the business.’ Individuals don’t have that option.”

Kaytal responded by noting that the there’s a provision in the health care law that allows people to avoid the mandate.

“If we’re going to play that game, I think that game can be played here as well, because after all, the minimum coverage provision only kicks in after people have earned a minimum amount of income,” Kaytal said. “So it’s a penalty on earning a certain amount of income and self insuring. It’s not just on self insuring on its own. So I guess one could say, just as the restaurant owner could depart the market in Heart of Atlanta Motel, someone doesn’t need to earn that much income. I think both are kind of fanciful and I think get at…”

Sutton interjected, “That wasn’t in a single speech given in Congress about this…the idea that the solution if you don’t like it is make a little less money.”

(Emphasis added.) Mmnm, I think Solicitor General Kaytal hasn’t gotten the memo about trying to stimulate the economy.

(Sorry to snark, but sometimes that’s how I express my anger.)

Later on in the same piece, we see this bit:

Judge James Graham, a Reagan district court appointee who is temporarily hearing cases on the appeals court, said, “I hear your arguments about the power of Congress under the Commerce Clause, and I’m having difficulty seeing how there is any limit to the power as you’re defining it.”

Kaytal responded by referencing United States v. Morrison, in which the Supreme Court struck down parts of the Violence Against Women Act, and United States v. Lopez, which struck down gun free school zones. In those cases, Kaytal responded, the Supreme Court set the limit that the Commerce Clause had to regulate economic activities.

But that argument proves too much.  According to him the mere act of earning money in any context allows the Federal Government to regulate everything in your life, however unrelated it might be to the actual commerce you engage in.  Yes, I know he said you can avoid it by earning less, but that is a statutory limitation.  That isn’t a constitutional principle.  If you can force a man who earns $1 million a year to buy health insurance, you can equally force a man who earns only a single dollar and the fact that Congress hasn’t chosen to regulate the second man has nothing to do with the question of whether Congress has the power to regulate either of them.

But if the mere fact you earn money allows Congress to regulate every aspect of your life, even if its not directly related to you earning a living, then that means that United States v. Morrison and the United States v. Lopez were both wrongly decided.  Which means that Obama’s attorney was making a specious Constitutional argument.  In order to win this case, they have to enunciate principles that 1) still provide limits for Congress’ authority, and 2) don’t conflict with the holding in Morrison or Lopez (or any other case where they found that Congress exceeded its commerce clause power).

Hat tip: Jim Treacher (it was a tweet, but I am linking to his blog as my thank you).

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* Fyi, the Solicitor General is more or less the lawyer who officially represents the President in court in numerous cases.  Generally they stick to the Supreme Court.  I am not sure why he was involved here…

[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]


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