August 24, 2020

Thoughts and comments heading into the Republican National Convention, which, in comparison to the lackluster Democratic version of same, promises to have the mainstream media having a bona fide meltdown on a nightly basis. Look, President Trump knows how to put on a show, right? Trust me. This is going to be a show.

I shoulda been a meteorologist. Two days ago I was watching Levi Cowan’s daily update on what was then Tropical Storm Laura and predicted to myself it would hit the Texas – Louisiana border at or near the Sabine River as a Category 2 storm. Which is exactly what it appears it’s going to do. Man, I’m a genius. And an underappreciated genius at that.

…seems a perfect opportunity for Jimmy Buffett’s “Tryin’To Reason With Hurricane Season”.

The hits on the Democratic National Convention are starting to come. Sure, you’d expect the Trump / Pence campaign to point out the underlying anti-Semitism that was present, but you wouldn’t expect a high-profile California Democrat to go public with her criticisms. Expect more in the coming days as it would appear the Dems succeeded in doing something unprecedented: that is, having a convention with zero – and I do mean zerobounce in the polls.

It’s good to see folks slowly starting to come around to the fact that Biden’s entire campaign has been built on a lie. Expect this to be hammered over and over at the RNC this week. Biden is, and always has been, an empty-suited, full of s**t liar who you wouldn’t ever consider buying a used car from. The fact that he’s become a senile demented coot doesn’t warrant compassion in any way. In my view, once a liar, always a liar. That doesn’t just disqualify you as a presidential candidate, it makes you one serious a**hole as a human being.

Further evidence that the liberal left on Twitter is nothing short of insane. I wish I could feel some compassion for these people but I don’t. They hate me and those who think like me. But I don’t hate, I just point out how stupid, ignorant, and pathetic these people are. Which wouldn’t be important except for the fact that the Democratic operatives in the mainstream media lazily and unprofessionally use Twitter as fertile ground for their incessant attacks on President Trump and his administration.

…same thing with the QAnon bullshit. Heck, I spend a lot of time on conservative websites and Twitter accounts and even I have no clue as to what the folks on “Q” espouse. There are lunatics and conspiracy theorists on both sides of the political aisle; it’s bad enough they exist, the fact that the mainstream media pushes “Q” will only send more people their way.

Planned Parenthood is evil. There is no other way to put it. They need to be de-funded and condemned to the hottest recesses of Hell.

Gotta now go play “pool guy” for the last big week of the year probably 20-plus hours. After this I’ll be dropped to next to nothing Which is OK by me – I accomplished exactly what I wanted to do during the time I was getting severance from my old job.

…after this week it will be time to relax a bit. I’ve already started working on my resume and starting to think about my next IT industry gig. I know it’s time – I’ve been starting to feel restless about getting back into “the game”; but at this point in my life I want to (or at least hope to) do it on my own terms. The outplacement agency lady said I’d be surprised at how many companies would pay me to work remotely part-time and make some good money. So at this point all I will say is, surprise me!

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 02:43 | Comments Off on Monday Musings
August 22, 2020

My quick take on this year’s Democratic National Convention: a picture says a thousand words. The DNC was nothing but a fear-fest – specifically, the fear of Donald Trump and the continuation of America’s historical and capitalist traditions. While I’ll admit to not watching a moment of it live, I did follow a number of Twitter feeds on both the right and the left to get the takes of people on both sides whom I consider kind of “bellwether” opinions. And nothing I read or heard was anything near what I would consider uplifting and hopeful. Or, more importantly, specific in terms of what policies a Biden administration would prioritize or pursue if elected.

…instead there were a lot of calls for “empathy” and equality through change, but nothing specific about what those changes would entail. Other than that it was Trump Derangement Syndrome ad nauseum, night after night, sprinkled with Hollywood and music industry celebrities that, looking back, did nothing to help Hillary Clinton’s presidential bid in 2016. And all it did was reinforce the incredibly stupid and ill-advised violation of Politics 101 rule #1: give the folks something to vote for, and not against. Voters will crawl two miles over broken glass to vote for their preferred candidate; they will not do the same to do a protest vote.

…this is why what I predict what you will see in this year’s election the swamping of early mail-in-voting numbers for Democrats who will passively drop their anti-Trump vote in the mail without checking all the other boxes, while Republicans will swamp the voting precincts on Election Day and check most (if not all) the boxes for Republican and conservative candidates.

….which is why, in the end, the underlying fear being projected by the Democrat platform at the end of last night’s convention with the mask-wearing undercuts any possible optimism “Slo’ Joe” Biden mindlessly attempted to convey during his TelePrompTer speech. What the image conveys is: be afraid, and a team incapable of projecting hope and strength. Not a good look, and most definitely not a good selling point for an undecided wanting to be convinced to vote for the Democratic ticket.

….final word: expect to see a whole different breed of cat during next week’s Republican National Convention.


Silly me. I thought that professional sports were supposed to be events for folks to relax, escape from the stresses and strains of daily life, have fun, and let loose. The NFL, and the majority of other professional sports, with the injection of politics and liberalism into its daily operations, has ceased to be fun to watch any more. What is wrong with these people? Do they have a death wish? Because they are killing whatever good they once stood for.

…but that’s what liberal by their very nature do – take the fun and enjoyment out of everything. Why is that, BTW? Is it because they’re so incapable of joy?

…all I can do is speak for myself (although I know I’m not alone in this regard), is that I haven’t watched a single professional sport or related programming (in my case, GOLF Channel and the MLB Network) all year and don’t plan on it going forward. And I’ll admit I don’t miss it. Supposedly, the PGA Championship was a week or two ago (something I would have avidly watched last year), didn’t watch it, still don’t know who won and don’t care. (I know it wasn’t Tiger Woods since that would have been all over the media.) I haven’t watched a Red Sox game, don’t even know if they are even playing. And I don’t care. They want to support Black Lives Matter? They can do it without my participation in any way.

…which also means I won’t be watching or listening to (or, for the first time in like 30 years, financially contributing to), the WEEI/Jimmy Fund Radiothon (if they’re even having it). I feel bad for the kids having cancer, so I can – and will – will find a different, similar charity to support. Like I have said previously, if you support in any way Black Lives Matter and the Marxist, America-hating organization you will not get my support in any way for anything you are involved with.

…continuing with the sports motif, is there a more ignorant yet pampered sports celebrity than LeBron James? He wouldn’t last two hours as a dishwasher at your local Texas Roadhouse – or in my landscaper Carmelo’s crew – but yet the media fawns all over him like he’s something special. He’s a moron who just happens to be good at handling a round orange ball, no more, no less.


This National Review Online article by the great Victor Davis Hanson is a must-read for everyone wanting to seriously consider what is really happening in America these days and not rather stick one’s head in the sand or closing your eyes and holding your hands over your ears while screaming “na na na na na”. Here are the money sections for me:

Once upon a time, trying to torch a federal courthouse would earn years in prison. And simply taking over a large chunk of a downtown to re-create Lord of the Flies was unthinkable. Not now. Today you can go to jail for reopening a gym that requires masks, social distancing, and constant cleansing with antiseptics. But you will not go to jail if you assemble en masse to riot, unmasked, armored with makeshift padding, umbrellas, and helmets, and you’re free to shout and spray in the faces of officers and fellow looters and rioters alike.

Yet this is the hard phase, the Jacobin moment of the Revolution. And we have not seen the full extent of the ongoing counterrevolution that will thin out the violent in the streets and in some ways fall more heavily on those who have empowered it. There will be a counterrevolution because without one there is not much of America left. And about 250 million people liked the America prior to March 1 and finally, in extremis, won’t so easily give it up. Washington and Lincoln, after all, do not just belong to some unhinged Antifa thug mad at America because he is mostly mad at himself. To almost every Jacobin tactic, from defunding the police to violent attacks on federal property, the people are opposed. And they make no apologies for their past or present.

The Sixties generation is going out as it came in: gross, loud, and cowardly, destroying the very institutions for others that it so selfishly consumed for its own benefit. If we wish to know why America’s veneer of civilization was so thin, and this year so easily scraped away, revealing barbarism beneath, look to a generation’s architects in the university, the media, sports, corporations, and politics who long ago seeded their cultural IEDs and are now giddy they are at last going off, though terrified that the ensuing blasts are reverberating ever closer to home.

Another must-read article, one that reinforces (albeit in a different way) what I’ve been saying frequently on this platform, that Democratic-run cities are dying sh**tholes, and that the Democrats who live in and around them are more than happy to both support what is happening there, and, in doing so, hastening their destruction. More money clips:

Making these riots, looting, and protests even worse however has been the responses of these same local Democratic mayors and governors. Rather than clamp down on this destruction, they have — at best — turned a blind eye to it. More often these Democratic Party politicians have actually celebrated these violent protests, calling them “mostly peaceful” and justified.

Worse, the ruling Democrats in several of these cities have compounded the problem by simultaneously calling for the elimination or significant reduction in their police forces. Even as the local police have struggled to contain the riots, their political leaders, once again all Democrats, have withdrawn their support.

The result? Businesses and citizens are now fleeing these hellholes in record numbers. As noted in the New York article above:

It’s snapshot simple. The wealthy and the companies they work for pay most of the taxes. The poor consume most of the taxes through social programs. COVID is driving the wealthy and their offices out of the city. No one will be left to pay for the poor, who are stuck here, and the city will collapse in the transition. A classic failed state scenario.

At the heart of this disaster however sit the people in charge. In Chicago Democrats have pretty much ruled unopposed for more than a half century. It is the same in Portland, New York, San Francisco, and Seattle. Nor are these American cities unique. Across the nation urban cities have been failing for decades, and in almost every case those cities have been ruled unopposed by Democratic Party machines for those same decades.

While we must grant that much of the 2020 urban exodus is related to the realization by big businesses — because of the Wuhan panic shutdowns — that they don’t need people to come into an office, that working from home in this digital age works and can save a business millions in office rent, we must also recognize that much of it is because people and businesses do not wish to live and work in a pigsty where you can be attacked at will merely because you are successful, and where the Democratic Party politicians in charge won’t do anything to fix the situation, and are even taking actions to worsen it.

Hat tip: Instapundit

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 03:01 | Comments Off on Weekending
August 20, 2020

Trust me, the best video you’ll see on the internet, guaranteed to make you smile.

They actually kind of remind me of several Goodboys I know when they get together (the basket being cute young chicks and an open bar). 🙂

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 21:34 | Comments Off on Pandas Being Pandas

monkey Good morning, class; please take your seats. As your class schedule undoubtedly shows – the fact you’re here would seem to bear that out – you have elected to attend my Music 101 class this year. In case we haven’t met before, I’m Dr. Rhesus L. F. McGillicuddy, Adjunct Professor of Music at this hallowed institution.

The intent of this class is to introduce you to the joys of music and how to listen to music, so no monkeying around and pay attention! Otherwise, I’ll fail your a**es and refer you to Dr. Eli Franken’s 13-week lecture series on “The Sociological Significance of Type-Token Distinction in Advanced Astro-Metaphysics”. ‘Nuff said?

OK, let’s get started and lend me your ears. Today we’re going to discuss creative examples of song arrangements in popular music – that is, taking a fairly simple pop tune and, after starting out simply, gradually build it into a big finish, or grand finale: a grand fin, if you will. Umm…yes, Mr. Hynes?

Hynes: You mean like the way Barry Manilow and Whitney Houston used to regurgitate their hits?

NO, NO, NO! That’s exactly the wrong way of doing it! For those of you who may not know what student Hynes is talking about, there are certain entertainers out there, Barry Manilow and Whitney Houston being just two examples, who have made their livelihood off of cheesy arrangements that start somberly or wistfully with only a piano, then gradually build to a grand finale – Manilow’s “I Write The Songs” or Houston’s “The Greatest Love Of All”, for example – but these “big finishes” are artificially engineered without a whole lot of creativity involved. Listen fellas, anyone can do a grand finale simply by taking the song up a key, then slowing the tempo down in order to drown it in orchestra and echo for optimum effect. Hell, apes can do that in their sleep.

No, student Hynes, the most creative arrangements are those that take the most simple song and gradually layer instruments and voices upon that a simple foundation almost imperceptably until when the big finish hits, you wonder where the heck all that sound came from. And if you’re really, really creative, you top things off with some little flourish at the end to create a nice lingering effect.

Seeing that this is our first class, we’re going to take a very simple example – one that almost anyone should be able to learn from: Olivia Newton-John’s “Banks Of The Ohio”, an early hit for her from 1972. When it comes to simple songs, you can’t get much simpler – three verses, a chorus repeated three times; the same basic tune repeated six times. The only thing that distinguishes the chorus from the verses is the fact that its lyrics are repeated. “Banks Of The Ohio” is a traditional American folk song in the so-called tragic category; allow me to quote from its Internet Wikipedia entry:

“Banks of the Ohio'” is a nineteenth-century murder ballad, in which Willie invites his young lover for a walk during which she rejects his marriage proposal. Once they are alone on the river bank, he murders her.

The song has been recorded countless times, including by Johnny Cash, The Carter Family, the Blue Sky Boys (whose version, performed in 1936, appears in the soundtrack of the 1973 film Paper Moon), the Monroe Brothers, Joan Baez, Olivia Newton-John (with Mike Sammes, in 1971, her second commercial single in the United States), and Doc Watson, with slightly different lyrics when sung by a female.

This is your typical three-chord folk tune in G, C, and D7. But as you listen to the song unfold, I want you to listen for the gradual layering of instruments and voices that turns this simple folk tune into a mini-production all its own. Are you ready, class? Mr. Kowalski, pay attention!!!

Kowalski: Er, did you say something, Doc?

Perhaps class, our Mr. Kowalski needs something to wake him up. I have just the remedy. Let us hear “Banks of The Ohio” by watching a video of a very young (and very attractive) Olivia Newton-John – dressed in rather fashionable early-’70s clothes, I might add – lip-syncing to the studio version of the song. Mr. Kowalsi, turn up the volume please…

…Well, that was exciting, wasn’t it? Were you paying close attention to the music and the arrangement? I hope so. Let’s discuss.

The first verse begins quite simply: strummed acoustic guitar, plucked acoustic stand-up bass, and drums accompanying Olivia’s vocal:

[G] I asked my love to take a [D7] walk,
To take a walk, just a little [G] walk
Down beside where the waters [C] flow
Down by the [G] banks, of the [D7] Ohi [G] o.

Next we have the chorus. As I mentioned, the tune remains the same, it’s just the lyrics that are different:

Then only say that you’ll be mine
In no other arms entwine.
Down beside, where the waters flow
Down by the banks of the Ohio.

You will notice that for the chorus, Olivia is joined by some male harmony vocals. There’s a tenor harmony in the background, but it’s the deep bass vocal that is particularly noticeable (especially when repeating the words “where the waters flow”, and “the Ohio”). This was a technique used on two other early hits of hers, BTW – “Let Me Be There”, and “If You Love Me Let Me Know”.

Until this point, the simple instrumentation in the song has remained unchanged. Notice, however, that this changes with the second verse:

I held a knife against his breast
As into my arms he pressed,
He cried, “My love, don’t you murder me
I’m unprepared for eternity!”

Note the introduction of electric bass and Farfisa organ (a compact organ popular in the late ’60s/early ’70s) playing a low scratchy note beginning with the word “knife”. Did you notice how big and booming the bass is, and how distinct it is compared to the plucked acoustic bass heard prior to that? Listen to how the organ plays a kind of grumbling murmur whose tone changes to the guitar chords being played. This may seem quite subtle, but remember, we’re talking about simple arrangements that build gradually.

The second chorus is a repeat of the first. But notice how the organ suddenly takes on a more prominent role. Notice also that the tenor harmony vocal, barely discernable in the first chorus, has also now been brought forward. This broadens the song’s foundation, but still there remains a restrained hand at work, which serves two main purposes: 1) to hold back the tension to be released in the final verse and chorus, and 2) provide room for the additional instruments and voices that will serve as the means by which that tension is released.

At the start of the third verse, bass and drums kick the song into gear:

I wandered home between twelve and one
I cried, “My God! What have I done?
I’ve killed the only man I loved
He would not take me for his bride.”

Hear the instruments introduced? A tinkling keyboard – probably a piano and/or harpsichord – syncopates to the rhythm. Percussion, in the form of a tambourine or perhaps sleighbells, accentuates the back beat. The organ’s volume is pushed up a bit to give it a little more forceful sound. Olivia’s sweet voice also starts emoting a little bit – she’s not all over the chart like a Whitney Houston would do, but enough so that the song begins to rock a little.

Thus the stage is set for the grand finale, which takes the form of a “celestial chorus” of Olivia voices behind the final chorus:

Then only say that you’ll be mine
And in no other arms entwine.
Down beside, where the waters flow
Down by the banks of the Ohio.

This grand finale begins after the word “say” with an explosion of wordless harmonies piled one on top of another to create a cascading effect. There’s no additional instrumentation here – the arranger has chosen Olivia’s voice, or rather, voices, to serve as the grand finale.

But he’s not done yet: remember how I said a real creative arranger will always find a way to top a grand finale off? If you listen carefully to the last line of the final chorus, you’ll hear yet another Olivia voice – this one slightly distinct from the others and treated with echo to give it a shimmering effect. This one sings a simple “bah ba-ba ba-ba bah” after the words “of the Ohio” just before the last line is repeated, then heard again to close the song out in style.

So there you go – a simple but effective example of how even the simplest tune, with a little ingenuity and creativity, can be turned into a minor gem. And for Olivia, an early hit.

That’s it for today. Have a nice day, gentlemen. See you next time.

Awwww… who took my banana? KOWALSKI!!!!

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 01:38 | Comments (3)

A few thoughts and comments on a week where “pool boy” is starting to feel kind of restless about who he is and where is is at this point in his life. See, the thing is that about three weeks from now my current gig will be over, and it will be time to start thinking about “the future” and what my next steps should be. Should I retire? Should I find another job in retail that will get me out of the house but not too much? Should I go back into Information Technology and find a gig where I work from home? Just the thought of the latter creates a PTSD kind of response where I can’t sleep. But sooner or later, I’m going to have to at least start thinking about it.


I looked at this and couldn’t help wonder if anyone told Hillary ahead of time that she’d be associated with a graphic showing that she’d actually lost to Trump in 2016. Because I don’t think she really believes it.

You want evidence that the entire DNC convention has the enthusiasm of an Air Supply reunion tour? Check this out. Do they really think we’re that stupid?

Normally I wouldn’t post a link to a video that involves animal cruelty, but y’all need to know what these Black Lives Matter animals are all about. How assholes like this can be allowed to operate in our society is beyond my ability to even comprehend. Thank God the poor animal’s suffering wasn’t long.

…I suppose the fact that a BLM supporter would do this kind of thing to a human being shouldn’t then be surprising, then. These people are vermin and need to be arrested and locked up for a very long time so they can see what reality really is. And the fact that Democrats continue to call this kind of thing “peaceful protest” tells you exactly the kind of evil that is in their hearts. These people have no soul.

I am, and will be going forward, Andrew Breitbart. See, to me there is no going back. We either have a civilized country or we don’t. We either ascribe to the Constitution or we don’t. If you wanted to vote Democrat while I voted Republican, that used to be fine – after all, we all wanted the same things but in different ways. But that’s not the way it is now.

…the Democratic Party as it is presently constituted, solely out of its visceral hatred for Donald Trump, and nothing else, wants to destroy everything this country has been about and everything that has made it the light beacon of the world. So I say to those who still support what is today’s Democratic Party: you hate Trump? Fine. But, you hate America? You and I will have zero to do with each other going forward. The barricades have been assembled, and it is at the barricades where we must part company. You think I’m fooling? Try me.

See, I hesitate to generalize about labels like “Democrats” and “Progressives” and “Black Lives Matter”, but the fact is, that these are the same folks who are allowing the civil unrest (OK, riots) by a bunch of mentally ill vermin, insane freaks, to continue on a nightly basis for the better part of the last three months. I mean, think about it: who in their right mind as a mayor or governor would allow a city and its citizens to have their rights to free passage and commerce, and the rights to make a living destroyed by the mob?

…there was a time when I wanted President Trump to have the National Guard brought in there, but – and the same is true for Seattle, Chicago, and New York – if the citizens there don’t give a sh*t what about is happening, then why should I? Seriously, f**k them. You want to live like that? Be. My. Guest.

Honestly, when it comes to the Democrats who makes this sh*t up? Who conjures up this kind of thing?

Communist China is a cancer on the world. If you support cancer, support “Slo’ Joe Biden.

Truly one of the best and most powerful political ads I’ve ever seen.

Along those same lines, I support Laura Loomer and have contributed to her campaign. It’s a long shot, for sure, but why not?

Ladies and gentlemen, today’s Democratic Party as sanctioned by the Democratic National Convention. Because to Democrats, politics is their religion. Where is their soul?

Outside of the fact that she used American taxpayer dollars to fund her extravagant lifestyle and travel while First Lady, I’ve never really had a problem with “Moochelle” Obama. She’s not dumb, and never has been. And, like her husband, she’s a political opportunist of the greatest sort. So it was that when she posted video at the DNC with a lie that even the mainstream media couldn’t support call me not surprised. But Democrats will lie shamelessly in order to put forth their agenda. I just wish Ms. Obama would just stick to facts.

The same sentiment can’t be held against former President Bill Clinton. For some one to criticize Donald Trump for how he accounts himself in the Oval Office – from someone who used it as “Blowjob Central” is beyond parody. I guess when it comes to shameless, there are no equal to the Clintons.

OK, I don’t want to leave this post on a down note.

I could listen to Fleetwood Mac’s “Think About Me” a hundred times a day and not get tired of it. You have to listen clearly for Stevie Nicks’s harmony at the end of each verse but it’s a beautiful thing. Her harmonies in the FM mix (between Lindsay Buckingham’s and Christine McVie’s) is what makes their vocal arrangements so special.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 01:12 | Comments Off on Thursday Thoughts
August 18, 2020

I’ve told y’all before how this is all going to go down, but no one listens to The Great White Shank. Did anyone really think that businesses and their insurance companies were going to sit idly by while Democratic mayors and governors allowed their inner cities to be ravaged by protesters, rioters, and looters? Did anyone really think that Democratic state governors and public health officials were going to be allowed to skate state after sending COVID-19 patients into nursing homes and long-term care facilities?

Consider this the first of many, many shoes to drop. You can be there are any number of lawyers and law firms just queuing up ready to get in on the action. Why, it will make Discovery Channel’s “Shark Week” look like a goldfish convention.

Look, normally I’m not much of a litigious kind of guy. I think folks ought to be willing to try and work things out before calling the lawyers in because you know whose going to get rich off of the lawsuits, and it ain’t going to be the plaintiffs. But in these two kinds of cases the behavior of the people involved is so egregious that, even if you can’t get them to pay in criminal court you nail in civil court. And does anyone really think that a jury of peers is going to not be sympathetic to the people and their businesses who were basically hung out to dry because mayors and governors wanted to inflict the most damage on President Trump? Because that’s what it’s all about here.

These Democratic elected officials ought to be sued up their collective asses until they bleed out of their noses. Of course, none of them will be held criminally liable, but you can bet your sweet bippy that these states and cities, already in a state of fiscal desperation after years of incompetence, corruption, and reckless and wanton maladministration, are going to have to pony up to the tune of millions of dollars in damages. And given the precarious economic state of these cities and states, it wouldn’t surprise me a bit if more than a few ultimately end up filing for bankruptcy in order to get their affairs straightened out. It’s not going to be pretty, and plenty of innocent people and local economies are going to be devastated as a result. But this is what happens when Democrats continue to vote Democrat and allow their cities and states to become sh*t holes of economic and physical devastation.

At some point, the voters have a responsibility in what is going down and what will be going down. They are, and will be, reaping the whirlwind of what they have sown. Which is the way it ought to be.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 01:41 | Comments Off on Reaping The Whirlwind
August 17, 2020

Hat tip: RedEaglePatriot

With the usual disclaimer about how polls in August look as compared to how folks actually vote in November, allow me to pour a little cold water on those poor saps who continue to rely upon the likes of CNN and MSNBC for their news and information. I don’t care what the so-called national polls run by the major news and cable news networks say: I trust my sources (the same sources, BTW, I relied on back in 2016 with an additional new polling company whose work I trust completely). I still remember talking to a couple of my best Goodboys pals and then a couple of guys at the Casa Blanca Mexican restaurant a week before the elections re: how confident I was Donald Trump was going to win. They all looked at me like I had two heads.

But I wasn’t wrong.

In terms of politics, August is a long time before Election Day, and I still believe some serious pins are going to drop as November 3rd gets closer. I truly believe that one way or another, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s seat is going to become available, turning the entire election into a abortion rights free-for-all, the COVID-19 virus and all the implications related to professional sports and mask-wearing be damned. And I do believe what’s going on in the economy is going to astound folks, “blue state” tin-pot dictators be damned. And I think you’re going to see the rioters and looters in “blue state” cities become more emboldened and try to take their actions into the suburbs – something the cable news networks are going to have to start to cover.

…forget about the current hubbub over mail-in voting and the US Postal Service: the fact is, come November, whether it be by the Republicans coming out and ensuring every state does things the right way, legal decisions that rightly protect the rights to “one man one vote”, or the harsh reality that if folks can go grocery shopping or “peacefully protest” they can safely vote in person, the Democrats’ push for mail-in voting will be revealed as just another attempt to gin up enthusiasm for a Democratic ticket that – to be perfectly honest – no one gives a s**t about.

…you know it and I know it: this election is going to come down to one person: Donald John Trump. And anyone who has looked at presidential elections since virtually the start of this country will tell you that you cannot win getting people to come out to vote against someone. The Democrats have nothing positive to run on. Their political operatives in the mainstream media will do all they can to give them cover, of course, but cover will get you only so far. Normally, I’d say the presidential debates are going to matter, but I still have a hard time believing “Slo’ Joe” is going to debate Trump. I just don’t see it happening – if the guy won’t take questions from reporters after making his VP pick for five minutes, do you really think he’ll be willing to do it for ninety minutes?

…I don’t believe Donald Trump is behind in any polls. Now, I don’t believe his lead is very large at this time, but there are two important facts about presidential elections you need to be aware of: (1) the incumbent usually takes the vast majority of voters who are considered “undecided” going into the campaign’s final days, and (2) the most folks have already made up their minds as to who they are going to vote for. And I can tell you that this year, the pollsters know there is a huge unknown number of folks who support the President but will never reveal that support to friends, neighbors, and – most especially – pollsters. We are living in such a toxic environment that you have more folks than you can ever imagine scared out of their wits that their family, friends, and employers will find out about their support for the Republican ticket and President Trump. As my go-to guy who knows all there is to know about these kinds of things says, “you don’t know how bad it is out there.”

So as the Democrats gather virtually for this week’s convention, be aware of two important facts: (1) virtually no one is going to be paying attention to anything “Slo’ Joe Biden or Kamala Harris says, and (2) expect the mainstream media and Democratic operatives in the cable new networks to proclaim Biden / Harris the second coming of white bread. Don’t believe me? Ask yourself this: (1) why was there zero – and I mean zero – presence of Biden campaign operatives on the Sunday morning shows, and (2) why would “San Fran Nan” Pelosi make her silly call for the head of the USPS to testify before Congress the very same week of the Dems convention? They’re losing, folks. And Pelosi knows it.

What can you expect the Democrats to run on this week? Social justice? Black Lives Matter? De-funding the police? Climate Change? Raising taxes? Donald Trump bad? Because if that’s all they’ve got, they’re friggin’ nuts. The Democrats have zero vision for this country’s future beyond social justice, climate change, and income redistribution, and they’ve chosen a worn-out, used-up, senile empty suit of a Washington swamp creature as the face of their party’s 2020 ambitions? I can tell you right now that is a loser’s hand.

So here’s the state of the race. Forget about what you hear in the mainstream media. This race is Donald Trump’s to lose. The truth is, had it not been for COVID-19 and all the fear-mongering being pushed by the national and local media, Trump would be looking at a landslide victory. And while a landslide victory is not yet out of the question, it would only take a major post-Labor Day weekend COVID-19 outbreak to cast the whole election cycle into uncertainty. But the economy is roaring back, and President Trump’s push to get things back to “normal” (something I don’t believe is possible, BTW) will find far more receptive ears than those who continuing to push fear and mandatory face masks. As a result, the President is in a great position to win re-election. Look at the map. He only needs to win one of the “gold” states to get to 270 electoral votes. My guy tells me that PA and NH are solid Trump, and MI and MN are easily within reach. And not only is Wisconsin is not out of the question, there is a “secret state” in play that neither he nor the GOP are willing to talk about. There’s a lot of money in play behind the scenes in that state, and they want to see that it gets used wisely. (I think I know what state it is but I’m not telling!)

One final note once we get past Labor Day: watch where the money is being spent. Who is trying to expand the battlefield in terms of both states and demographics? Who is trying to energize and protect their base? In politics following Labor Day in a presidential election year the the poker faces are harder to read than ever, but they can be read. Pay attention. But at this point I’d most certainly rather be in Donald Trump’s shoes than “Slo’ Joe’s.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 00:39 | Comments Off on As The Dems Convene
August 16, 2020

This is our eighteenth summer here in the Valley of the Sun and I don’t think we’ve seen one ever hotter. Oh sure, we were here that summer when it got to 120, but we’ve never had a stretch like this where every day for like the past three weeks has been near or over 110 without any sign of monsoon whatsoever. Of course, I’m used to it; I just limit my outdoor exposure and enjoy my trips to the pool late at night or after playing “pool boy”.

I long for the days when I’d be scanning all directions for signs or lightning or perking up my ears at a distant rumble of thunder. But there is none. Just a blast-furnace of heat that goes on and on without any end in sight. Of course, this can’t go on forever – we’re halfway into August and I can tell how short the days have become by the need to put my lights on when driving home after closing the store. Supposedly, the meteorologists are suggesting that September could be a wet month, but who knows? It’s been such a crazy year I think – and expect – almost anything to happen at this point.

Tell me this isn’t an outside deck you wouldn’t just love to just hang out on over cocktails on a sultry Saturday night? This is our friend and longtime Goodboys Nation weblog commenter Jana’s back porch re-do. Isn’t it beautiful? Jana always had a sense of space, place, and design. I think it is very Zen. Maybe I ought to just just drive to Massachusetts in late October and plan on a stop in Louisville so I experience it for myself!


R.I.P Robert Trump. If you had any hesitation at saying just how much of a sewer is these days, all you have to do is see that #WrongTrump is currently trending on Twitter. I won’t link to it, of course, but it just shows just how the political left in this country thinks. Everything is political to them. Not only have they lost their minds, but, more importantly, they have lost their souls. Of course, one can at least try to reclaim one’s wits, but once you’ve lost your soul there is no going back.

What this country has truly and sadly lost is any sense of – as long-departed Boston radio legend Bill Marlowe used to call it – taste, class, and appreciation. Which, come to think of it, speaks as much about what one has in one’s soul as much as anything else. The political left today is nothing but trash, garbage, and evil. I’m not talking about well-meaning Democrats who are, always have been, and will always vote Democrat come hell or high water. I count them among my closest family and friends. While I think they are misguided, I respect the integrity of their political tradition, but I will also argue that the Democratic Party they presently align themselves with is long dead.

What I’m talking about are the Democrats in Washington and in power in any number of cities and states who have had decades – DECADES – to make their cities shining examples of everything that is possible in 20th and 21st century America and instead have allowed them to become absolute inner-city sewers and shit-holes for their African-American citizens. And I don’t want to hear any statistics defending anything these Democratic mayors and governors have done. And I don’t want to hear any excuses about “well, that’s only one section of town, the rest is an urban paradise.” Bullshit. Here are the statistics, courtesy of The Daily Signal. See if you can identify a common theme:

1. Detroit
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 20.0
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 50
Mayor: Michael Edward Duggan, Democrat

2. Memphis, Tennessee
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 19.5
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 51
Mayor: Jim Strickland, Democrat

3. Birmingham, Alabama
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 19.3
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 52
Mayor: Randall Woodfin, Democrat

4. Baltimore
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 18.5
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 54
Mayor: Jack Young, Democrat

5. Flint, Michigan
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 18.3
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 55
Mayor: Karen Weaver, Democrat

6. St. Louis
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 18.2
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 55
Mayor: Lyda Krewson, Democrat

7. Danville, Illinois
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 18.0
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 55
Mayor: Ricky Williams Jr. (nonpartisan election)

8. Saginaw, Michigan
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 16.7
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 60
Mayor: Floyd Kloc (nonpartisan election)

9. Wilmington, Delaware
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 16.3
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 61
Mayor: Mike Purzycki, Democrat

10. Camden, New Jersey
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 16.2
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 62
Mayor: Francisco Moran, Democrat

11. Pine Bluff, Arknansas
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 16.0
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 62
Mayor: Shirley Washington, Democrat

12. Kansas City, Missouri
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 15.9
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 63
Mayor: Quinton Lucas, Democrat

13. San Bernardino, California
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 15.3
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 65
Mayor: John Valdiva, Democrat

14. Alexandria, Louisiana
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.6
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 68
Mayor: Jacques Roy, Democrat

15. Little Rock, Arkansas
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.6
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 68
Mayor: Frank Scott Jr., Democrat

16. Cleveland
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.5
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 69
Mayor: Frank Jackson, Democrat

17. Milwaukee
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.3
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 70
Mayor: Tom Barrett, Democrat

18. Stockton, California
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.2
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 70
Mayor: Michael Tubbs, Democrat

19. Monroe, Louisiana
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.1
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 71
Mayor: James Earl Mayo, Democrat
20. Chester, Pennsylvania
Violent crime rate (per 1,000 residents): 14.0
Odds of being a victim: 1 in 71
Mayor: Thaddeus Kirkland, Democrat

…and that doesn’t even include the clueless and incompetent mayors of Seattle and Portland who have allowed their cities to have become a playground for Antifa and the anarchists who have co-opted the whole concept of “peaceful protesting” and treat those mayors like a bunch of chumps. Or cities like San Francisco and New York City whose Democratic leadership has turned them into hell holes under the excuse of “equality” and “justice”. Which is nothing more than socialist bullshit. These one-beautiful and thriving examples of American diversity and commerce are now just rotting examples of maladministration, corruption, social justice activism, and incompetence. And the majority of their people, like sheep, keep putting up with it. It’s pathetic.

And name me one major figure in the Democratic Party that has condemned the admitted Marxist, socialist, anti-American organization Black Lives Matter, or Antifa. You can’t. Of course, I can’t think of more than a handful of Republicans who have done so – most of them are Washington establishment swamp creature cowards – but at least they are some.

The sad and unflinching truth is, we have become a nation of pussies, afraid to defend our country, our history (warts and all), our flag, and our Judeo-Christian heritage all because a bunch of ignorant, pampered, basement-dwelling, self-absorbed social media cretins, brainwashed by a college and university system overrun and controlled by a bunch of post-sixties radicals, feminists, and America-hating socialist activists, indoctrinated with the belief that this country is irreconcilably unjust and racist, and that one can destroy someone’s life with a few taps on the keyboard and a Twitter following. And perhaps they can. But that’s what we have become, both as a country and a culture.

I think I’ll go for a late-night swim.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 00:58 | Comments Off on Weekending – “The Long Hot Summer” Edition
August 13, 2020

This video is worth its own post.

In my view, pretty much everything Steely Dan recorded after “Gaucho” was the equivalent of dishwater; nothing more than Steely Dan trying to sound like Steely Dan. At least on “Gaucho” the band was still looking to explore new avenues and try different things even while recognizing the long shadow cast by “Aja”.

In Steely Dan’s case, their situation mirrored that of Fleetwood Mac, where Lindsay Buckingham was determined that the band not create a similar follow-up to the wildly (and historically) successful “Rumours” with a “Rumours II” kind of album. He wanted to explore new and different things and led the band to create something totally unique and (in my view) greater and more creative than “Rumours” ever was in “Tusk”.

And, like “Tusk”, “Gaucho”, while not nearly as commercially successful, has stood the test of time in terms of creative content. Wile both bands continued to produce both enjoyable and quality content over the next several years, the days of true experimentation and exploration of new musical turf were over.

Enjoy, you Steely Dan fans!

Hat tip: Ed Driscoll at Instapundit.

Filed in: Uncategorized by The Great White Shank at 01:26 | Comment (1)
August 11, 2020

So, from the sounds of it “Slo’ Joe” Biden is down to what appears to be a small handful of choices for his VP – California senator Kamala Harris, former Obama national security advisor Susan Rice, California congresswoman Karen Bass, and Michigan governor Gretchen Whitmer. Personally, I don’t see the latter two as anything but fodder for the Washington chatter-heads, political pundits, and the cable news talking heads. Whitmer, after all, is white, and there is zero way Biden is not going to pick an African-American woman as his VP; most especially after the questionable (I would call them racist) comments he has made over the last couple of months regarding African-American voters. Not only does he need to check all the appropriate boxes when it comes to what I would argue is the Democrats’ most important voting constituency, but he needs to shore up that support in the Democratic Party. As for Bass, my opinion is that she was just window-dressing and a distraction from Harris and Rice.

As y’all know from prior posts, I was certain failed Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacy Abrams was going to be Biden’s (or, had he been nominated, Bernie Sanders’) VP candidate. To me it made a lot of sense: (1) she’s a left-wing media darling; (2) Georgia has been increasingly moving “purple” over recent presidential elections, and (3) she would help Biden make a case for the necessity of mail-in voting in order to ensure that everyone is who is able to is allowed to vote – after all, in her view (rightly or wrongly) she was robbed in her run for governor by purged voting lists, voting irregularities, and the like. I still think she would have been Biden’s best choice, but I’m guessing her political shadow and/or personality (i.e., her aggressive posturing for the VP slot) might have been a bit much for the Biden team to contemplate as a personality match going forward.

So we’re down to Harris and Rice. As I have opined earlier, I think Harris was Biden’s most comfortable choice to make. First, her abrasive (in my view, obnoxious) personality – most especially when it comes to interrogating the poor unfortunate slobs who are called to her Senate hearings – has made her a darling of the mainstream media and Democrats. Second, both she and Biden have experience as senators, and there’s a mindset there I think Biden would have a certain sense of comaraderie with. And finally (and most importantly), she would naturally and instinctively play the role of attack dog for the Biden campaign (the kind of role Harris would excel at), thereby allowing Biden to take the high road and focus his message on what a Biden administration would look like. Sure, she attacked Biden’s record on race pretty good during one of those Democratic debates, but Biden – perhaps more than anyone else – knows the difference between political posturing and personal attack, and would be able to look past that. Were Biden smart – and folks have already written ad nauseum about how poor his political instincts are – Harris would be his choice.

Which brings me to Susan Rice. As I’ve written earlier, if Rice is added to the Biden ticket it would (in my view) illustrate a staggering show of weakness on Biden’s part. First of all, it would reveal without any doubt that Biden is nothing but a empty vessel carrying water for Barack Obama and the Washington elite, signalling a return to the Obama administration with its policies, priorities, and politics. In my view, it would be a terrible choice, allowing Trump to not just run on his own economic record and compare and contrast and compare with those of the Obama administration (not to mention the Washington “swamp”), it would also open up another front of attack by highlighting the Obama administration’s numerous failures in foreign policy and Rice’s role in those failures. Benghazi and Libya, and Rice’s role in blatantly lying about it on numerous occasions once again will come to the fore, and history will not be kind to her. Secondly, I am now of the belief that the Durham investigation will come out ahead of the November election, and you can bet Rice will be at the center of whatever the results of that investigation are, whether there are indictments or not.

More than anything else, the choice of Rice causes Biden’s campaign to be a “looking back” campaign as opposed to one that is forward-looking and inspirational. I believe when folks are going to the polls for a presidential election they are voting forward, not backward. True, voting forward requires a “more of the same” mentality, but it is really a “I want more of the current direction” kind of vote. Having Susan Rice on the ticket would make Biden’s slogan something akin to Warren Harding’s “return to normalcy” campaign, but what “return to normalcy” would that involve? Ferguson and Baltimore? We’re seeing the results of that in spades nowadays, and I don’t think it paints the Democrats and their lack of condemnation for the ongoing riots and looting going on in Democratic-led cities in a positive light. How does adding Susan Rice to the Biden ticket motivate new voters to pull a lever for Biden? Simple answer, it doesn’t.

Rice is a policy wonk – an experienced policy wonk, for sure – but one with no charisma and (I would argue) no reason or purpose for being on the Biden ticket other than allowing Biden to check off the appropriate boxes for an African-American female as his running mate. In my view, the baggage of the Obama administration that Rice would bring would diminish Biden’s already (shall we say) diminishing political and personal stature (Biden revealing his presidency to be nothing more than Obama III). Rice’s foreign policy legacy will be a dartboard for Trump TV ads, and her understated personality offers zero for a campaign that truly needs a dynamic personality to contrast what Biden would characterize as something akin to “his steady hand on the tiller”.

Choosing Susan Rice as his VP choice would be a disaster for Joe Biden, but given Biden’s notoriously poor political instincts and the fact that it has become increasingly clear that Biden is nothing more than a figurehead, an establishment-chosen candidate the Washington power-brokers can push and prod and manipulate to carry their water in what would be a third Obama administration, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if Rice ends up being the choice.

And what a disaster that would be! Of course, Biden would have no one to blame but himself: after all, he was the one who declared that his choice for VP would be an African-American female (as opposed to, say, the most qualified candidate). But that, in a nutshell, would illustrate just how shallow and politically tone-deaf Joe Biden is, and always has been, as a politician.


UPDATED: And so it’s Harris after all. As I mention above, this just confirms in my view just how bad Biden’s political instincts are. Not only has he chosen someone whose personality is so abrasive and her political past so controversial (the Trump campaign should put this Tulsi Gabbard clip in regular rotation) that she dropped out of the Democratic race with something like a 2 favorability, but she offers nothing to Biden in terms of electoral support – California was never going to go red to begin with. While it is true that Harris can play the role of Biden’s attack dog, Harris has so many skeletons in her closet that her role will be muted as best.

The biggest problem for Biden now is that he really has nothing to make independents want to vote for him except for their dislike and/or disapproval of Trump. Which (in my view) is never enough to pull you over the finish line in November. Most folks want to vote for someone and/or something, which Trump’s base and many independents who see the riots and looting in Democratic cities with their Democratic mayors and governors refusing or unwilling to do anything about it will most certainly do. The folks who truly hate Trump will, of course, crawl over broken glass to do so, but a Biden / Harris ticket does not, and will not “move the needle”. The Biden campaign is on life support, and you’ll see his choice of Harris show that in the polls over the coming weeks.

If Biden truly wanted to infuse some excitement and an image of political competence into the race he would have chosen Gabbard. She’s attractive, likeable, politically moderate, and a fresh face that independents in key battleground states would be drawn to. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that with Gabbard on the ticket she might just have been able to drag “Slo’ Joe over the finish line. But as I mentioned above, the big mistake Biden made was to announce at the start that he was going to choose an African-American as his VP. So who does he choose? A woman who only African-American link is her skin color (she’s mixed race), and whose record in the black community is questionable at best. It’s a disastrous pick for Biden and the Democrats, but this is what you get when your candidate has been chosen by the Party Establishment instead of its most passionate and engaged voters.

Filed in: Politics & World Events by The Great White Shank at 09:51 | Comments Off on Mulling Biden’s VP Choice [UPDATED]


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