Monday, February 27, 2023

Last Call For The Failbert Files

Author, cartoonist, professional racist shitbag and "Dilbert" creator Scott Adams went on a racist tirade on his YouTube channel that was so vile that it actually got him fired from the funny pages and the bookstores.
Andrews McMeel Universal, the company that syndicates “Dilbert,” said it is cutting ties with the comic strip’s creator, Scott Adams, after his racist remarks about Black Americans led hundreds of newspapers across the country to drop the satirical cartoon.

In a joint statement, Andrews McMeel Chairman Hugh Andrews and CEO and President Andy Sareyan said that the syndication company was “severing our relationship” with Adams and condemned his remarks, saying “we will never support any commentary rooted in discrimination or hate.”

The publisher of a forthcoming book from Adams also said Monday that it would no longer move forward with publishing the title.

The Penguin Random House imprint, Portfolio, said it won’t publish Adams’ upcoming book, “Reframe Your Brain.” The book was set to release in September.

“My publisher for non-Dilbert books has canceled my upcoming book and the entire backlist,” Adams wrote Monday on Twitter. He also said his book agent “canceled” him.

Portfolio published Adams’ previous titles, including “How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big” and “Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America.”
  1. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA this is the funniest this guy has been in the entire 21st century so far!
  2. Asshole.
  4. Adams has been a MAGA jackass for years now if anyone had bothered to notice, and Dilbert was pulled from nearly 80 newspapers the last time he went on a racist tirade back in September.
  5. He claimed that his UPN Dilbert show was canceled in 2000 because he's white.
  6. If you haven't seen the Dilbert Show, it was Rick and Morty for Gen X. We thought it was edgy back then and for 2000 it was. It got canceled because the ratings were terrible, even for UPN.
  7. Asshole, still.
  8. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA what an asshole. Even Ol' Teddy Beale despises him.
  9. Racist ASSHOLE. 
  10. Why wasn't he canceled sooner after finally, after three decades, introducing the first Black character in the strip as Dave, the engineer who "identifies as white" back in May? Guess we'll never know.

Good riddance to bad rubbish.

Ken's Definitely Gone Wrong, Con't

Not to be one-upped by Florida GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis and his war on public education, Black and Hispanic history, and LGBTQ+ America, Texas GOP Attorney General Ken Paxton is declaring war on the entire federal government.
Earlier this month, Texas’s Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit claiming that the $1.7 trillion spending law that keeps most of the federal government — including the US military — operating through September of 2023 is unconstitutional.

Paxton’s claims in Texas v. Garland, which turn on the fact that many of the lawmakers who voted for the bill voted by proxy, should fail. They are at odds with the Constitution’s explicit text. And a bipartisan panel of a powerful federal appeals court in Washington, DC, already rejected a similar lawsuit in 2021.

Realistically, this lawsuit is unlikely to prevail even in the current, highly conservative Supreme Court. Declaring a law that funds most of the federal government unconstitutional would be an extraordinary act, especially given the very strong legal arguments against Paxton’s position.

But the case is a window into Paxton’s broader litigation strategy, where he frequently raises weak legal arguments undercutting federal policies before right-wing judges that he has personally chosen because of their ideology. And these judges often do sow chaos throughout the government, which can last months or longer, before a higher court steps in.

Texas’s federal courts give plaintiffs an unusual amount of leeway to choose which judge will hear their case, an odd feature of these courts that Paxton often takes advantage of to ensure that his lawsuits will be heard by judges who are likely to toe the Republican line. These decisions, moreover, appeal to the deeply conservative United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

Paxton filed the Garland case in Lubbock, Texas, where 100 percent of all federal lawsuits are heard by a Republican appointee. Two-thirds of such cases are automatically assigned to Judge James Wesley Hendrix, who will hear this suit.

Hendrix, a Trump appointee to a federal court in Texas, is a bit of an unknown quantity. In his brief time on the bench, Hendrix did hand down one poorly reasoned decision undercutting a federal statute that requires most hospitals to perform medically necessary abortions. But Hendrix’s thin record does not tell us enough to know whether he’d actually be so aggressive as to declare most of the United States government unconstitutional.

The Texas federal bench is also riddled with judges — Matthew Kacsmaryk, Drew Tipton, and Reed O’Connor are probably the best known among them — who’ve largely behaved as rubber stamps for any right-leaning litigant who appears before them. It’s notable that Paxton chose to bring this case in Lubbock, where he was likely to draw Hendrix as his judge, rather than bringing this suit before Kacsmaryk or Tipton (Kacsmaryk hears 100 percent of federal cases filed in Amarillo, Texas. Tipton hears all cases filed in Victoria, Texas). But it remains to be seen whether Hendrix will show the same contempt for the rule of law as a Kacsmaryk or a Tipton.

So, while this case probably isn’t an immediate cause for alarm, it is a reminder that no lawsuit filed in Texas’s federal courts can safely be ignored.
Paxton, who is arguing that the current government spending bill is illegal because of House proxy voting, doesn't actually have to win the case.
He just has to get a judge to issue an injunction while the case is being decided. An injunction against the entire federal government. Boom, immediate government shutdown.
It would get worse, of course. Any new budget would have to be redone on terms of the House GOP Circus of the Damned writing the new plan.  They could then get every cut they want, because the hostage (in this case, the entire US economy) would have been shot already and would be bleeding out. 
Hours would matter, and gamesmanship could lead to a disaster that would break the country's machinery of operation.

Of course, everyone would blame Biden. Biden could ignore the order, but that's an immediate Constitutional crisis, and one with real consequences far into the future.

I'm really hoping this case gets dismissed, but again, all it takes is one crapass Trump judge to derail the country.

We'll see.
It would be a nightmare.

The Jackson Blues, Con't

In seething rage after the state GOP was called out for destroying the state capital's water system, Mississippi Republicans are now moving to put as much of the city of Jackson under state control as they can, and are passing legislation to make the changes permanent. The result is an effort to effectively dismantle the city's government and to rip power from Black leaders in the most Black city in the country.
Citing rising crime, Mississippi’s Republican-controlled House recently passed a bill that would expand areas of Jackson patrolled by a state-run Capitol Police force and create a new court system with appointed rather than elected judges. Both would give white state government officials more power over Jackson, which has the highest percentage of Black residents of any major U.S. city.

The state Senate has also passed a bill to establish a regional governing board for Jackson’s long-troubled water system, with most members appointed by state officials. The system nearly collapsed last year and is now under control of a federally-appointed manager.

The proposals for state control have angered Jackson residents who don’t want their voices diminished in local government, and are the latest example of the long-running tensions between the Republican-run state government and the Democratic-run capital city.

“It’s really a stripping of power, and it’s happening in a predominantly Black city that has predominantly Black leadership,” said Sonya Williams-Barnes, a Democratic former state lawmaker who is now Mississippi policy director for the Southern Poverty Law Center Action Fund. “You don’t see this going on in other areas of the state where they’re run by majority white people.”

Norris notes state government officials have long been unwilling to help Jackson with the water system and other problems.

“We had to go through all this by ourselves. Solo,” he said. “Now, all of the sudden you want to come and take it and say, ‘OK, well, we’re going to take over.’ You know, treating us like kids. We’re not kids.”

Mayor Chokwe Antar Lumumba said the proposal for courts with appointed judges reeks of apartheid and “plantation politics.”

“If we allow this type of legislation to stand in Jackson, Mississippi, it’s a matter of time before it will hit New Orleans, it’s a matter of time before it hits Detroit, or wherever we find our people,” Lumumba said.

The sponsor of the expanded police and court bill, Republican Rep. Trey Lamar, from a rural town more than 170 miles (275 kilometers) north of Jackson, said it’s aimed at making Mississippi’s capital safer and at reducing a backlog in the judicial system.

“I can assure you that the bill has zero racial intent whatsoever,” said Lamar, who is white, in response to arguments that courts with appointed judges would disenfranchise Jackson voters. “There is nothing racial about the bill on its face, and there is no intent for the effect to be racial."
Not any more racial that cross burnings or poll taxes, folks. 

Nowhere is the Republican playbook to destroy government more apparent than in the Jim Crow South, where a city regularly doomed by a white supremacist state government is set up to fail at every turn, and then the local government services are taken into receivership by the kindly Republicans trying to "save" those people from themselves.

It's American apartheid. Subjecting Black folk to a white court system, a white police department, white water and infrastructure, and white government without any say over their own city.

And yes, Mayor Lumumba is right, cities like New Orleans, Detroit, Milwaukee, Louisville, and Omaha are next if the GOP has its way.

You may want to wash your hands of red states and let the people who live there "get what they deserve" but the people who live there don't deserve this.
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