Maybe Pelosi watches Rocky or Friday Night Lights or whatever and then at the end when they lose she says See?

I'm gonna kick tomorrow

Sometimes people tell me they want to support the newsletter but it’s a little too expensive for what they can afford so if you’re one of those people let me know and I’ll send you a discounted monthly subscription option for half off. No judgment whatsoever! The rest of you rich pricks gotta pay up sooner or later.

Subscribe now

I don’t have too much to say about the what-have-you yesterday and we’ve all seen enough takes on the “optics” and the production values of low-T Bobby Mueller’s stagecraft by now but look at this hog shit.

Pretty cool. Here are a couple of thoughts I did have:

More than anything else I came away from the proceedings not so much mad at Trump because I am mad at Trump every single hour of my shitty life but mad at the mewling paypigs of the legacy media who more than anyone else —  besides one person —  continuously prove themselves incapable of rising to or appreciating the severity of the situation at hand.

The person I think I’m most angry with at this point is Nancy Pelosi who shortly after Mueller all but begged the House to begin impeachment proceedings reportedly talked Jerry Nadler out of doing so because well no one really knows why maybe because it might require working hard and potentially falling on her ass.

The four of those heroes up there gave a press conference yesterday afternoon which was rambling and incoherent for the most part but basically amounted to Pelosi saying We still gotta wait. The time isn’t right. Just hold on.

There’s always something else arriving presently that will this time finally and fully give the Democrats the ammunition they need to begin impeachment proceedings but when the day comes everyone is like ah, well, nevertheless and then we wait for the next thing.

Changing is very hard I think we can all agree. This is true whether you’re a political party or an individual with bad habits and unhealthy behaviors like say me and probably you and you go to therapy and you talk about it or you talk to a good friend who cares about you and you’re like yes, yes I know what I have to do to change and then when it comes time to actually put in the work you’re like eh maybe later. That seems like a whole fucking thing you think. You would have to completely reinvent who you are into a whole other version of yourself and that is scary because what if it’s even worse?

There was a song about that once that I always think about. I’m gonna kick tomorrow it said. I’m gonna kick tomorrow it said then it had a steel drum which is weird tbh but it somehow worked it was the nineties and you could do whatever you wanted. You could impeach the president off of basically nothing if you wanted shit was wild back then.

Here’s the thing though sometimes even if the shit you have to do is going to be hard you can take a stab at it and fail and that’s ok because you have to start somewhere. There’s a certain nobility in failing and I’m not sure why Pelosi and the Democrat leadership don’t understand that. It seems to me the idea of going down swinging against what look like insurmountable odds has been a pretty durable theme that has resonated with Americans throughout the entire history of our political and cultural mythology but maybe I am misunderstanding literally everything I’ve ever read or watched. Maybe Pelosi watches Rocky or Friday Night Lights or whatever and then at the end when they lose she says See? This is what I’ve been trying to tell you. Not worth it.

You almost can’t get mad at Trump anymore because he’s just doing what they let him and there is no one even bothering to try to stop him. He’s doing what comes naturally.   Pelosi is supposed to know better though she’s supposed to be fighting for us so what’s her excuse?

This isn’t just academic of course and every second spent waiting is another few dozen  lives ruined. Yes deportation isn’t new under Trump we’ve covered that but this type of thing here in this video below this is the horror that is happening right now all across the country and it is going to keep happening every day until it is stopped. This is one of the costs of Pelosi and company waiting for the always eventually forthcoming 100% indisputable moment when political and cultural appetite align in the sky like an opportunity eclipse before they do anything.

At the end of the video the man who had his car window smashed and was dragged out by the pigs in front of his children is sitting in the back of the cop car and his older child is crying saying she’s scared and she doesn’t want them to take daddy and the guy says he says officer can I say goodbye to my other child and the pig says no.

“Right now we’re being extremely nice to you, but what you just put us through, what we had to go through,  you’re lucky that I’m letting you talk to her right now,” he said and man I hope that guy is OK. The ICE guy I mean because that is some real hard stuff he had to go through there. What that family made him do.

Then the video cuts to the man’s young daughter crying in the back seat and she says “I want to go back in time and tell daddy [unintelligible] America” and it’s hard to make out what she says it’s probably not fuck America but it should be.

Oh and there’s also this:

After everything wound down last night Pelosi and Chuck Schumer went over to Maureen Dowd’s house in D.C. for a fancy party featuring all the political and media elites and Howard Fineman of MSNBC posted a photo of it and everyone got really mad at him so he took it down and posted another tweet about how mad he was that everyone got mad at him and everyone rightfully is getting mad at the second post now too.

Sometimes think about how the only lasting contribution I will have ever made to the culture at large is explaining to people what The Ratio is. There are worse things I suppose.

People like to talk about optics a lot in D.C. and I guess one thing I would say vis a vis optics is maybe don’t go to a fancy party for rich and powerful people an hour or two after explaining why you can’t be bothered to put up at least a modicum of resistance to the most self-evidently corrupt and domestically dangerous president we’ve had in decades?

Maybe the press conference was so rushed because she wanted to get to the party before all the good hors d'oeuvres were gone?

People don’t want to change even when faced with clear evidence that what they are used to doing is going to lead to calamity and that’s true if we’re talking about dragging an addict who objectively knows his life is in peril into rehab or power brokers in D.C. who would rather go to fundraisers than do the necessary dirty work of governing or say for example factory farmers whose work is contributing to the likely death of life on earth!

To be clear another cost of failing to adequately challenge Trump is the destruction of the climate as we know it.

Here’s something from the New York Times on a burgeoning dispute between ranchers and farmers and their attendant lobbyists and politicians and the faux meat industry.

In general, studies suggest that plant-based foods — even highly processed plant-based meat alternatives — have a smaller environmental footprint than traditional meat production. (Livestock are responsible for, roughly, 14.5 percent of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions each year, and cows, used for both meat and dairy, are responsible for the most livestock emissions.)

If we keep doing what we’re doing in terms of the climate and don’t start making preparations for a change in the very near future like for example if we maintain business as usual when it comes to industrial farming we are fucked I don’t think that’s unfair of me to say.

Alternative meat products which are growing in popularity appear to be a more sensible solution you would think but some other people don’t think that such as people who have a monetary interest not to.

The meat industry is scared due to they don’t like their corner being encroached on by meat substitutes so what they’re doing is fucking with these upstart producers and trying to stave off the competition for as long as possible. Changing would be difficult you see.

I wrote about this in the Guardian the other day and it basically went like this.

Is a veggie burger actually a burger? More to the point, is it misleading to call it one? A new law set to go into effect in Arkansas this week is meant to prohibit what the state is calling misleading and confusing packaging on food items. Opponents of the law say it’s merely an attempt to protect the interests of traditional agricultural producers from the increasing popularity of alternative “meat” products.

Among the opponents of the law are Tofurkey, makers of a range of popular wheat-protein and soy-based products, and the American Civil Liberties Union, who filed a lawsuit, alongside The Good Food Institute and the Animal Legal Defense Fund, on behalf of the company.

The law, which would prohibit the use of terms like “meat”, “sausage”, and “beef” on products that are not actually made from animals, as well as prohibit the labelling of items like cauliflower rice as “rice” or soy milk as “milk”, would be punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 for each violation. Similar laws have passed in states throughout the country including Missouri, Mississippi, Louisiana, and South Dakota.

The ACLU and other opponents say the law is a violation of Arkansas citizens’ First and Fourteenth Amendment rights, and what’s more, a blatant attempt to stifle competition in agriculturally driven states. In the complaint they allege the law is “specifically designed to disadvantage purveyors of plant- and cell-based meat.”

David Hillman, the legislator behind the bill freely admitted that his intent was in fact to “protect the agricultural producers in this state.”

“You can’t sell a Chevy and call it a Cadillac,” Hillman also said.

But no one is actually confused when they see a product on the shelves called “veggie burger,” the ACLU argues. In fact people are seeking them out more than ever, whether it’s for health, environmental, or animal cruelty concerns. Items like the Impossible Burger in particular have made significant inroads into restaurants throughout the country in recent years.

“More and more, consumers are seeking out plant-based foods that can be produced without cruelty to animals or polluting our environment,” Stephen Wells, the Animal Legal Defense Fund Executive Director said in a statement. “But Arkansas’ lawmakers, kowtowing to the animal agriculture industry, have responded by enacting an unconstitutional law that makes truthful speech a crime.”

“When consumers choose plant-based foods, it is not because they are confused or misled, it is because they are savvy and educated about the health and environmental consequences of eating animal products,” Tofurky CEO Jaime Athos said.

Anyway most of the meat producers involved say they don’t mind these new products they’re totally cool with them buddy they just want to make sure there’s no confusion and everything is on the up and up and all the i’s are dotted and all the t’s are crossed. You gotta have your papers in order people like to say whether it comes to selling fake hot dogs or being a human being driving around with your kids on the way to the doctor.

I guess basically what the meat industry is saying here is that they’re gonna kick tomorrow just give them a little more time.

Here’s a sad song I like to listen to sometimes.

Hey, look over your shoulder
Hey, it's me getting older
Always thought I should've told you
It's alright, but it's sure getting colder
I know you're over my shoulder
I know now you'll get to hold her
You're gone
But it can't be wrong
You're gone
Can't be for long
You walked over my shoulder
You came 'cause
I told you
You thought
I knew it was over
All you knew was to hold her
You're gone
It can't be wrong
You're gone
Don't stay for long

Everyone knows the famous words police say when they’re arresting you and pushing your head down so you don’t smash it on the door of the cop car there which are Everything that you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. It’s weird that they still provide that advice as a courtesy in a way isn’t it? It’s basically saying shut the fuck up for your own benefit.

I was just reading a piece in the Wall Street Journal in my study while smoking a pipe and it was about all the myriad ways that your employer is able to spy on you and essentially what the deal is now is that Everything you say can and will be used against you in a court of job (?) Hmm. Court of work (?) Gonna have to come back and punch  that up later to make the melody of the phrase resolve on the right chord but you get what I was going for.

A lot of the stuff it says about how your boss is spying on you is obvious but it’s not clear to me how much of it is obvious due to I haven’t had an office job since before Facebook was even really a thing so what do I know about the workplace. One thing it says which most of you probably know is that “U.S. employers are legally entitled to access any communications or intellectual property created in the workplace or on devices they pay for that employees use for work.”

Everyone knows that I’m guessing but the extent to which these fucking nerd bosses are trying to gamify productivity was sort of eye-opening to me. They might begin tracking you the moment you turn on your phone in the morning through when you walk into the office then monitor where you go for coffee or lunch or to the doctor or gym or whatever and even monitor the tone of your conversations during phone calls. All of this is to protect IP they usually say but in a lot of cases it’s also to extract every last drop of sweat out of you so they don’t have to pay you for a single extra minute of downtime.

As a companion to the story they also put out a podcast in which they talked about the findings and they talked to one boss in particular a guy named Sagar Gupta of the Dallas biotech company BIOREV. I have no idea what a company called BIOREV does but I bet it’s really fucking cool.

Gupta was frustrated with his employees due to a project wasn’t coming in on time and he thought productivity was lagging so he installed monitoring software that would watch everything they did to try to get to the bottom of things.

“I got a shocking revelation,” he said. “My employees on average were working three hours a day.”

Oh my god are you OK Sagar? I don’t think you should be alone right now. Text me if you need anything buddy.

The rest of the time his employees were fucking around on Facebook and YouTube and WhatsApp he said. I just got that name by the way. WhatApp? Not much, WhatsApp with you? I’m not very smart in my defense and like I said I haven’t had an office job since Friends was still on TV and we all really really hoped John Kerry would be president.

Some of Gupta’s employees were like we’re uhhhh using WhatsApp for work but he was watching that shit and he was like I know you were actually playing grab ass with your friends online and now you’re fucked.

These types of monitoring software bosses are using now can get really granular. Some might take screen grabs of your work computer or phone every thirty seconds or more and if need be employers can go back and take a look at your entire day. How do people look at porn at work anymore by the way? On your personal phone I guess. The last time I worked in an office you used to have to print out black and white photos to take into the bathroom to jack off with it was the dark ages man.

Some of his employees after this “were rebellious and we had to coach them,” Gupta said. “Two of them were un-coachable so they left the company. But the other three changed their path of work.” All normal shit to say and think.

This is all probably not surprising right? This sort of shit happening isn’t news I’m guessing but here’s the thing that made me want to write about this in the first place which is a manager for BIOREV noticed the productivity of a specific employee in India had been dropping.

They looked up her shit and noticed she was listening to a lot of sad songs on YouTube which was different than usual for her. Hard to think the employee in question is reading this in India but she should check out my post I did on how YouTube comments are the last sincere space online that was a really good one imo.

“Before she would listen to romantic songs or live music,” Gupta said of the woman in question and he also said they noticed she was going on Facebook and looking at one particular profile over and over again. HR got involved and they called her mother (normal shit) to ask her what was going on and her mother said she had recently gone through a breakup which is sad but what’s even worse I think we can all agree is that the heartbreak was effecting her work now.

So what they did was they threw her a surprise potluck party with all her favorite foods and had a singing competition to try to cheer her up. Surprise bitch we know you got dumped here’s some lamb.

“HR came in and said we are like a family and this is what we do,” Gupta said.

All that talk about the last time I worked in an office got me looking again at this Oral History of the Dig the Dig Boston has been running for the past couple months which will probably only be interesting to people from Boston or people who happen to enjoy oral histories about alt-weeklies where the editors fist fight each other and everyone is wasted all the time.

The Dig also just ran an excerpt from the Hell World book which you should check out  it’s the one about going to Cheers which maybe you already read so never mind.

This part of the oral history isn’t out yet but here’s a bit of it from one chapter they let me take a look at. I was not what you might call a “good” “employee” and Gupta would absolutely have had my ass.

This section I took these quotes of mine from is mostly about how our editor at the time Joe Keohane who would later bring me on at Esquire thanks man would get into fistfights with the publisher Jeff Lawrence but also about how I got fired and shit myself one time. Brodeur is the guy who took over my job and then later brought me on at the Phoenix. Everyone fires me but still wants to work with me for some reason.

Here’s a bit of it that sort of explains my particular deal for those of you who read this thing and care about me as a personality or whatever. The rest of you who just want to read about depressing news shit are dismissed for the day. Go jack off at work if you want I’m not your boss.

O’NEIL: We would have meetings, and I’d sort of lay on the floor and do yoga and stretch and lay on the table. That started to not be kosher once we got bought out by Metro Corp. Another thing I was famous for was eating everybody’s lunch right out of the fridge. I wanted the food and it was there, so why not?

Keohane and Jeff always ended up getting into donnybrooks. I never ended up fighting Jeff, which I regret. I’m going to wait until he gets a little older, and then I’m going to go at him.

Keohane was trying to run a tighter ship. I liked to fuck off during the day; stroll in at, like, 10 in the morning; go to the gym for an hour and a half at lunch. Even the freewheeling Dig office was, to me, too much like a regular office. I haven’t worked in an office since then either.

I’d go to bed at like 5 in the morning, and my roommate would still be up for a while. I’d be like, “Could you write an email to Jeff from my account saying I’m sick and won’t make it into work today? But don’t send it until 8 in the morning, because if you send it now, it’ll look like I was up all night partying.” I must’ve done that five or 10 times.

KEOHANE: Luke wasn’t superduper into the job. He was hysterically funny, but gross... absolutely disgusting. He used squat like a baseball catcher in his office chair, and roll himself across the floor to rip a giant fart in someone else’s ear. He was depraved.

O’NEIL: When I was fired, I remember Keohane and Jeff took me down to Foley’s where they dropped the ax. Y’know how when you get fired, you’re usually pissed off about it? Even at the time I was like, “Y’know what? You’re probably making a good decision here.”

MICHAEL ANDOR BRODEUR: If I remember at my job interview, all we did was trash The Phoenix. My entire experience with the Boston music world was a lot more varied than the five or six acts The Phoenix was willing to cover at the time. And the way they covered things just sucked. It just felt like someone’s parents writing about your band. But looking back, I came to the interview dressed like someone interviewing for a normal sales job. I didn’t have any sense of who I was dealing with. That became apparent later, when I came into my first day of work and there was still coke on my desk.

O’NEIL: I remember I was taking the train -- I lived in Somerville at the time -- and I was taking the train to Southie to work. When I got off the train, I knew I wasn’t going to make it. My stomach started rumbling, and I knew there were people behind me, but I had to let go, and I shit my pants on the way to work. I remember kicking a turd out of my pant leg and leaving it there on the sidewalk. Then I spent, like, the first 45 minutes of work washing myself in the bathroom. It had spread all down my legs. But I threw my underwear -- which was covered in shit -- down a cavern/chimney type-thing in The Dig’s bathroom. After I got fired, I was happy to know a pair of my shitty underwear was still there, and haunted the building forever.

Here’s another sad song I hope my boss isn’t watching my behavior I do not want to go to a potluck.

Ok bye.

I been starin', I been starin' into space
Always tired, not a smile, such a waste

I don't wanna, I don't wanna know
I can't tell you, I just have to go

Of all the people, of all the people to let me down
Of all the people, of all the people, why now
Save me, save me
Save me, save me

Bring me something, bring me something I can use
Well here's one thing, but it's not the one I choose
I can't help it, hope you show up soon
I can't help it, I'm countin' on you

Of all the people, of all the people to let me down
Of all the people, of all the people, why now
Save me, save me
Save me, save me

Can you tell me, can you tell me what went wrong
Guess I shoulda seen it comin' all along
Gotta fight it, I gotta be strong
Gotta be something, can't let it drag on and on

Of all the people, of all the people to let me down
Of all the people, of all the people, why now
Save me, save me
Save me, save me