Fish Pic Friday - Barramundi

Friday, November 15, 2019
Vicky Stark with a Barramundi
The fish of the week is the Barramundi.
The barramundi (Lates calcarifer) or Asian sea bass, is a species of catadromous fish in the family Latidae of the order Perciformes. The species is widely distributed in the Indo-West Pacific region from South Asia to Papua New Guinea and Northern Australia. The fish is known as pla kapong in Thai and as bhetki in Bengali.

Barramundi is a loanword from an Australian Aboriginal language of the Rockhampton area in Queensland meaning "large-scaled river fish". Originally, the name barramundi referred to Scleropages leichardti and Scleropages jardinii.

However, the name was appropriated for marketing reasons during the 1980s, a decision which has aided in raising the profile of this fish significantly. L. calcarifer is broadly referred to as Asian seabass by the international scientific community, but is also known as Australian seabass.
Darcisszle with a Barramundi

Barramundi are salt and freshwater sportfish, targeted by many. They have large, silver scales, which may become darker or lighter, depending on their environments. Their bodies can reach up to 1.8 m (5.9 ft) long, though evidence of them being caught at this size is scarce. The maximum weight is about 60 kg (130 lb). The average length is about 0.6–1.2 m (2.0–3.9 ft). Its genome size is about 700 Mb, which was sequenced and published in Animal Genetics (2015, in press) by James Cook University. Barramundi are demersal, inhabiting coastal waters, estuaries, lagoons, and rivers; they are found in clear to turbid water, usually within a temperature range of 26−30 °C. This species does not undertake extensive migrations within or between river systems, which has presumably influenced establishment of genetically distinct stocks in Northern Australia.
Nicole Spenc


The barramundi feeds on crustaceans, molluscs, and smaller fish (including its own species); juveniles feed on zooplankton. The barramundi is euryhaline, but stenothermal. It inhabits rivers and descends to estuaries and tidal flats to spawn. In areas remote from fresh water, purely marine populations may become established.

At the start of the monsoon, males migrate downriver to meet females, which lay very large numbers of eggs (several millions each). The adults do not guard the eggs or the fry, which require brackish water to develop.
 They have a weird sex life:

The species is sequentially hermaphroditic, with most individuals maturing as males and becoming female after at least one spawning season; most of the larger specimens are therefore female. Fish held in captivity sometimes demonstrate features atypical of fish in the wild: they change sex at a smaller size, exhibit a higher proportion of protogyny and some males do not undergo sexual inversion.

Prized by anglers for their good fighting ability, barramundi are reputed to be good at avoiding fixed nets and are best caught on lines and with fishing lures. In Australia, the barramundi is used to stock freshwater reservoirs for recreational fishing.
If Barramundi are on the list of fish you want to catch, but you don't want to have to fly to Australia to do it, Osceola Outback Adventures in Florida provides an opportunity to do so in the United States.



I learned of the "figure 8" trick once when musky fishing. Unfortunately, none bit.

Linked at Pirate's Cove in the weekly Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup and links. The Wombat is back in business, with Rule Five Sunday: Black Widow.















Time to Fertilize Your Lawn!

Thursday, November 14, 2019
Blackout Dates for Lawn Fertilizer Applications Take Effect on November 16
The Maryland Department of Agriculture reminds citizens that fertilizer blackout dates authorized by Maryland’s Lawn Fertilizer Law will begin on Nov. 16, 2019, and run through Feb. 29, 2020.

Maryland’s Lawn Fertilizer Law prohibits residents and lawn-care professionals from fertilizing lawns with products containing phosphorus and nitrogen between the specified blackout dates. An exception exists for lawn-care professionals, who may apply up to 0.5 pounds of soluble or insoluble nitrogen per 1,000 square feet to lawns they manage until December 1.


Potassium and lime may still be applied during the blackout dates since they are not considered a threat to water quality. Citizens and lawn-care professionals may resume lawn-fertilizer applications containing nitrogen and phosphorus on March 1, 2020, as long as the ground is not frozen or heavy rain is not predicted. A soil test is required before phosphorus may be applied to established lawns.

The department reminds citizens that the law prohibits anyone from using fertilizer products to melt ice and snow on steps, sidewalks, or driveways. Applying fertilizer to hard or frozen ground provides a direct pathway for nutrient runoff into storm drains that feed into the Chesapeake Bay.

Maryland’s Lawn Fertilizer Law requires homeowners and lawn-care professionals to follow University of Maryland fertilizer recommendations and use best management practices when fertilizing lawns. In addition, the law requires lawn-care professionals to be licensed and certified by the Maryland Department of Agriculture to apply fertilizer to the properties they manage.
It's probably too late to get an appointment with Tiger Time Lawn Care, of Memphis Tennessee, assuming they're still in business.



The Wombat is back in business, with Rule Five Sunday: Black Widow.

Impeachment Follies . . .

. . . with just a dab of Russiagate thrown in. Stacy McCain, The ‘Historic’ Impeachment
The morning Drudge headline stack:
. . .
What to make of all this? It’s all a giant pile of bat guano craziness. Our Constitution grants the President nearly unlimited authority to conduct diplomacy, which was what President Trump was doing on that call to the newly-elected president of Ukraine. Somehow — and I swear, I can’t fathom it — Democrats have convinced themselves that urging President Zelensky to take a look into Hunter Biden’s Burisma hustle, etc., amounted to “high crimes and misdemeanors.” Because no further psychiatric damage was possible after the Tide lost Saturday, I decided to switch the TV in my bunker office over to CNN. Yes, lets attempt that Gonzo voodoo channeling of the Ghost of Impeachments Past to try to understand exactly how in the Hell they’re rationalizing this delusion.
I could fill a page with impeachment links alone, but I'll just hit some highlowlights first. From Sundance at CTH, Hearing Highlights – Jordan, Stefanik and Ratcliffe Deconstruct Impeachment Narrative… this little gem from Jordan:
More at the link, of course. Althouse, "It feels like people are getting a little exhausted from all the impeachment coverage and the hearings haven't even begun," the NYT podcast begins today. Also "Castor is asking Taylor to essentially speak to Trump’s mindset. Taylor resists doing so, saying, 'I don’t know' more than once."
UPDATE: From one of the NYT commentators, Kenneth Vogel: "A small victory for Republicans: George Kent testifies that Ukrainian prosecutors 'should' investigate the oligarch owner of Burisma, the gas company that paid Hunter Biden, for possibly paying a bribe to kill an investigation in 2015."

It's a "small" victory because it's "for Republicans." If it were "for Democrats," it would be a mind-blowing bombshell.
. . .
 So much of this whole enterprise is about figuring out what's in Trump's head. Why do some people assume they know? I instinctively mistrust these people who purport to know and (obviously) won't acknowledge if they are self-aware enough to know that they're talking about something they cannot know.
Capt. Ed at Hot Air, Toobin: House Dems’ First Two Witnesses Had “A Big Problem”
Can anyone guess what it might be? C’mon, it’s been known for some time, even if House Democrats and their media supporters on impeachment have been too, er, polite to mention it. These witnesses to a “quid pro quo” or even bribery by Donald Trump have one thing in common … they never talked with Trump.

And, CNN legal analyst Jeffrey Toobin admits, that’s kind of a “big problem” (via Twitchy). . .
This could pose a problem for the Democrats Senator Graham on Impeachment: “I Will Not Allow Hearsay Evidence During Senate Trial”… (sundance)

Shall we switch gears for a while before a link dump to take care of the remainder of impeachment? The "ayes" have it.
BOMBSHELL: Leaked documents from the Ukrainian General Prosecutor’s office indicate complex money transfers from foreign sources into the control of a “slush fund” owned and operated by Devon Archer, John Kerry Senior, John Kerry Junior, Heinz Jr, and Hunter Biden. Nothing to see here, go away! Scat!

Not exactly news from John Sexton at Hot Air, IG Horowitz Has Asked Witnesses To Review His Report, A Final Step Before Its Release and from Ace, AG Barr: It Is My Understanding that the IG Report on FISA Corruption is "Imminent" Depending, of course, on your understanding of the word imminent. But bad news from WSJ, Justice Department Filing Suggests No McCabe Prosecution Imminent, "In pending lawsuit, DOJ says it won’t block release of documents related to former deputy FBI head based on probe." Rushbo, The Deep State Cabal Against Trump Is Very Real. James Bovard, USA Today; As the deep state attacks Trump to rave media reviews, don't forget its dark side

From Sharyl Atkisson, 96 Media Mistakes in the Trump Era: The Definitive List. Updated occasionally. Most are not mistakes; they're enemy propaganda.

From USA Today, the Roger Stone trial goes to the jury, Prosecution says Roger Stone lied to Congress to protect Trump; defense says there was no motive. Lying to Congress is a crime? Who knew, besides, of course, Michael Cohen.

Speaking of lying to Congress, Schiff: Who, Me? I Don’t Know The Whistleblower’s Identity (Capt. Ed).
And we should believe Adam Schiff because of, er, his long track record of honesty about his contacts with the whistleblower? Come on, man. The chair of the impeachment inquiry hearings accused Rep. Jim Jordan of issuing a “false statement” in claiming that he knew the identity of the whistleblower. After getting four Pinocchios from the Washington Post for lying about contacts between his office and the whistleblower, Schiff’s hardly in position to complain — or to be taken at his word. . . .
Charlie Martin at PJ Media, The Real Mystery About C*aramella and Vindman. One had previously been caught leaking secrets, the other leaking and disobeying orders; how did they keep their security clearances and positions of authority?
How, exactly, do you lose a job for security violations and return to the CIA? One would normally lose one's clearance, and even janitors and cafeteria workers at CIA are cleared.

Then there's LTC Alex Vindman, NSC staffer and active-duty Army officer. He has testified that he disobeyed orders, advised foreign governments to resist Trump, leaked internal information to others, and was actively working to subvert the president's foreign policy.

Now, Gods know I'm not a UCMJ lawyer, but if you look at the Uniform Code of Military Justice, that sounds like an Article 88 (Contempt to officials), Article 92 (Failure to obey order), and Article 133 (Conduct unbecoming an officer). There's an argument to be made for Article 94 (Mutiny) as well.

So this too is odd. Normally, under these circumstances, a serving officer would at least be relieved and very possibly confined awaiting court-martial.
. . .
The point here is that all of these things would, in the normal course of events, be security violations punishable by everything from actually losing a job to extended terms in Kansas making small rocks.

Why was this not the normal course of events?
From Da Beast, Ivanka Trump Tells Her Dad: Don’t Tweet the Whistleblower’s Name! No need; it's already out there.

And continued impeachment nonsense.


Schiff Convicts Trump as Nunes Poses Three Key Impeachment Questions He Predicts Dems Will Ignore

Impeachment Updates: Devin Nunes Comes Hard in His Opening Statement, Adam Schiff Makes a Ridiculous Claim

Impeachment launch: Can Dems make the case stick -- and make it quick? Update: "Now we get to fight back"

Taylor and Kent: We think Giuliani was looking to dig up dirt on a political rival in Ukraine, not promote U.S. national interests

Impeachment? Taylor Admits No Quid Pro Quo With Ukraine Funding, Bidens

What to expect when the Trump impeachment hearings begin - Axios

Althouse: Dan Drezner tells Mickey Kaus he's out of his depth.

Goodwin: Trickster Adam Schiff conjuring ‘guilt’ out of thin air

Schiff Show: Impeachment Going Forward on Calvinball Rules | VodkaPundit

Fallout from impeachment will be felt far and wide

4 Things to Expect as the Trump Impeachment Inquiry Goes Public

EBL: The Circus Is In Town 🀑🀦🏻‍♀️

So Serious: NBCNews.com Swoons Over Drag Queen At Impeachment Hearings

A tale of two quids | Spectator USA

Ace of Spades HQ Fake Impeachment Reactions, Spin, and Grotesqueries

House Democrats Want a Watergate Repeat. Don’t Count on It. - POLITICO
People died while Trump played games with Ukraine’s military aid - The Washington Post

Ukraine State Dept. Experts Clueless – Senator Grassley Asked DOJ to Investigate Ukraine in 2017… | The Last Refuge

Senate GOP Leadership Warns Trump: Any White House Attempt to Dismiss Impeachment Charges Will Fail… | The Last Refuge

Tour-De-Force: Devin Nunes Condemns Democrats 'Impeachment Sham'

Capitol Building To Be Decorated As Giant Circus Tent For Duration Of Impeachment Hearings | The Babylon Bee

"Rudy will be cut loose": GOP reportedly ready to make Giuliani the fall guy on impeachment -- if necessary

Theo Spark: Cartoon Round Up....

What an Ass!

At Althouse"I have made no provision for my wife Paulina Porizkova... as we are in the process of divorcing. Even if I should die before our divorce is final... Paulina is not entitled to any elective share... because she has abandoned me."
Said Ric Ocasek in his will, reported at Page Six.

Porizkova was the one who found her estranged rocker husband’s body in September, while bringing him coffee as he recovered from a recent surgery in his Gramercy Park townhouse. The pair, who had two sons together, called it quits in May 2018 after 28 years of marriage....

Ocasek, in his will, appears to have also stiffed two of his six sons — though not the children he had with Porizkova.
I hope the residuals from her modelling work is sufficient to keep her in the style in which she has become accustomed. But I'm sure she can find a nicer guy to take care of her if it isn't.

The Wombat is back in business, with Rule Five Sunday: Black Widow.












I Hope it Doesn't Hurt the Top Water Bite

Wednesday, November 13, 2019
'Prozac pollution' making fish less aggressive, says study
Pharmaceutical pollution in waterways is having a "disturbing impact" on fish, according to new research.

Psychoactive drugs - including antidepressants - are altering the reproductive behaviour, anxiety levels, and anti-predator responses of fish in the wild, according to Australia's Monash University.

The findings of the impact on the social behaviour of fish has been published in the journal Biology Today.

Dr Jake Martin, from the university's school of biological sciences, said: "Our research found that the antidepressant pollutant fluoxetine (commonly marketed as Prozac) did not alter behaviour of solitary fish.

"But in a group setting, fluoxetine exposure disrupted the frequency of aggressive interactions and food consumption."

He added: "The results are significant because they suggest that behavioural tests in social isolation may not accurately predict the environmental risk of chemical pollutants for group-living species."

According to the research, Prozac didn't change the feeding and foraging behaviour of solitary fish, however when it was applied to whole groups of fish it had a suppressive effect.
Bikini fisher Darcizzle catches Peacock Bass on top water.



The Wombat is back in business, with Rule Five Sunday: Black Widow.

Russiagate Ramping Up to Impeachment

Michael Ledeen writing at PJ Media offers a unified field theory on the Mueller investigation, Make No Mistake: The Mueller Investigation Was All About Flynn. An interesting theory, but too simple for my taste. People have wonderfully complicated motives. They could be out to get Flynn and Trump, too.

Via sundance at CTH, The Silence of The Shams – “Some Witness Reviews Still Being Negotiated”…, then  Finally – AP Confirms Horowitz Report “Principal Review Phase” Underway – “Invitations” For Witnesses and Lawyers…… By Thanksgiving maybe. The Democrats will try to impeach Trump first, and then say it doesn't matter. "Old News". Ace, IG Report "Expected" Before Thanksgiving, Supposedly Will Contain At Least Two Criminal Referrals, One for... James Comey? "This is originally from Sara Carter, who I don't know is very reliable, but it's something."Elizabeth Vaughn at Red State has some good news about it maybe, IG Report Expected Before Thanksgiving, Will Contain ‘At Least Two Criminal Referrals,’ One Of Whom Is ‘Expected To Be Comey’. Lock him up!
A House Republican source told Carter, “If it’s strong and comes out soon, the IG report will do some real damage to the Democrats’ impeachment charade. It would show that Resistance bureaucrats really are conspiring to take down Trump. It would also fatally undermine the credibility of Schiff, who argued vehemently that there were no FISA abuses—it will mean that, as Intel Committee Chairman, he’s ignoring severe abuses for purely political purposes.”
Via Insty:
A good segue to Jim Hanson at Da Fed, Alex Vindman Is Living, Breathing Proof That The Deep State Exists, And It Is Corrupt

But the big stuff is about Eric Ciaramella, the presumed "original" Whistleblower. Kerry Picket at WaEx, 'Saw everything': Alleged whistleblower Eric Ciaramella had extensive access in Trump White House
“The person that I always felt extremely uncomfortable around was Eric Ciaramella. He was one of the few guys around who seemed to know where the filing cabinets were, so to speak,” one former official told the Washington Examiner, adding that Ciaramella was antagonistic at an early Trump administration gathering when it was said that the goal was to turn Trump’s campaign promises and platform into policy.
From Michael Flynn's lawyer:
And this is interesting; from sundance, Dirty Business – ICIG Atkinson Receives Ethics Complaint Against CIA ‘Whistleblower’, Goes to Schiff Basement for Talks…. The charge is that by setting up a gofundme account for his legal costs, the "Whistleblower", Eric Ciaramella or whoever, has. as a government employee,  violated the law by seeking "donations" from prohibited people, foreigners etc, in effect seeking bribes. An interesting theory.

And the media war over the identity of the whistleblower continues to rage, Ace, Former CNN/WaPo Schlump Howie Kurtz Attacks Mollie Hemingway for Committing Journalism "I'm sure he's just following the Bill Sammon NeverTrump liberal PC line on this, though."Capt. Ed at Hot Air, Schiff: The First Rule Of Whistleblower Club Is That You Don’t Talk About Whistleblower Club. Katie Pavlich at Town Hall, Schiff Threatens Republicans: Don't Mention or Criticize the Whistleblower During Public Impeachment Hearings or Else

Insty. OLD AND BUSTED: It is very bad for media figures to identify whistleblowers.
The new hotness? ABC scrambles to figure out identity of Amy Robach leaker, who goes by ‘Ignotus.’

Will Ashley Bianco get her job at CBS back?

UPDATE: The Media Holds A Massive Double Standard About Naming Whistleblowers.
Yahoo! Facebook Sued for ‘Censoring’ Posts Naming the Trump Whistle-Blower. Good. At Mother Jones, David Corn whines that As Trump Attacks, Death Threats Against the Whistleblower and His Lawyers Increase. Death threats are overboard; tar and feathering might not be. From The Horn, a reminder, FLASHBACK: Obama punished whistleblowers, spied on press. That's different because, shut up!

From NYT via MSN, Trump Has Considered Firing Intelligence Community Inspector General. AllahPundit at Hot Air thinks that's a bad thing. NYT: Trump Thinking About Firing The IG For Sharing The Whistleblower Complaint To Congress
Rashly firing a top natsec bureaucrat for “disloyalty,” thereby creating a world of political trouble for himself and maybe inviting a charge of obstruction of justice?
I think it's probably a good idea, but too late. It's hard to be wrong about firing a top level bureaucrat. But if he shows up in the Horowitz report, absodamnlutely.

Julie Kelly at AmGreat writes from Inside the ‘War’ on Biden-Ukraine Reporting
The goal is to protect Joe Biden, the only candidate most Democrats think can beat Trump, both from any political fall-out for his son’s shady dealings in Ukraine as well as how the Democrats enlisted Ukrainian help to sabotage Trump’s presidential campaign.
Ace catches Fusion Nat Bertrand Writing in Politico That a Previous Article -- Published in Politico Itself! -- is a "Conspiracy Theory" with "No Evidence" "No evidence" is liberal for "bad think."
On January 11, 2017 -- one day before the Clapper/Tapper ring would execute the plan to give the fake dossier a "news hook" -- Ken Vogel and David Stern reported for Politico that Ukranian officials had interfered with the US elections -- on Hillary Clinton's side.
Donald Trump wasn’t the only presidential candidate whose campaign was boosted by officials of a former Soviet bloc country.
Ukrainian government officials tried to help Hillary Clinton and undermine Trump by publicly questioning his fitness for office. They also disseminated documents implicating a top Trump aide in corruption and suggested they were investigating the matter, only to back away after the election. And they helped Clinton’s allies research damaging information on Trump and his advisers, a Politico investigation found.
A Ukrainian-American operative who was consulting for the Democratic National Committee met with top officials in the Ukrainian Embassy in Washington in an effort to expose ties between Trump, top campaign aide Paul Manafort and Russia, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation.
The Ukrainian efforts had an impact in the race, helping to force Manafort's resignation and advancing the narrative that Trump’s campaign was deeply connected to Ukraine’s foe to the east, Russia. But they were far less concerted or centrally directed than Russia’s alleged hacking and dissemination of Democratic emails.
The Ukranian officials colluded with a DNC official named Alexandria Chalupa.

Because the fake dossier was given a "news hook" and reported on by Jake Tapper -- as had been arranged -- the next day, and also, of course, because the media was trying to prove foreign collusion on Trump's behalf and not Hillary's, this story didn't get much attention.

Right-leaning channels keep pointing it out -- and the leftwing media and NeverTrump corporate-funded GOPe clique just keeps ignoring it.

But it's never been disproved or even "credibly alleged" to be in any way false. Certainly Politico has never retracted it.

But the story is inconvenient for the leftwing media/Democratic effort to execute a coup against the duly-elected President, so it has to be Disappeared.
 An interesting Twitter thread from Climate Audit's Steve McIntyre on Ukrainian corruption:
Onto impeachment. Dave Marcus at Da Fed has 5 Reasons A Senate Trial Would Be A Nightmare For Democrats; not to be outdone, Vicotr Davis Hanson at NR has Ten Reasons Why Impeachment Is Illegitimate

Susan Ferrechio at WaEx, Democrats ditch Clinton impeachment's bipartisan playbook ahead of public hearings. Dr. John at Flopping Aces, Impeachment- the play: starring the democrat party as the KGB and Adam Schiff as Stalin. That simile is getting a lot of use.

One idea floated on how to get impeachment past the Senate is to convict using a secret ballot, so Senators don't have to answer to their constituents.Politico, There’s a Surprisingly Plausible Path to Removing Trump From Office "It would take just three Republican senators to turn the impeachment vote into a secret ballot. It’s not hard to imagine what would happen then."  Jazz Shaw at Hot Air, Impeaching Trump Via A “Secret Ballot” May Be The Democrats’ Next Plan. Jim Geraghty at NR says A Secret Ballot for Impeachment Would Be a Terrible Idea Wow, just wow!

Saving them the trouble, Charlie Martin at PJ Media has a Prediction: No Impeachment
They have to go to trial in the Republican-dominated Senate. Where Eric Ciaramella can be called for public testimony under oath. Where Alex Vindman can be challenged by a former JAG about his violations of the UCMJ. Where people can be called to testify in public what they've said in the Star Chamber: that Ukraine never knew about aid being suspended, and that the president of Ukraine denies any pressure. And where House Members can't be threatened with ethics complaints for asking inconvenient questions.

Where what already looks like a shady investigation of a made-up crime can't be controlled.

My guess is that this will hang on until after Thanksgiving, especially if the ICIG report comes out. Then they will announce in high dudgeon that because of GOP obstruction and the risk to the (still "secret") whistleblower, along with the proximity to the election, they can't press on in the Senate where the evil Mitch McConnell will drag out the trial and thwart the will of the People.

They might even try to continue the "inquiry" into the New Year, although the risk grows every day that Republicans will start leaking seriously, or filing more ethics complains against the Democrats — or, of course, starting subpoenas in the Senate.

But an actual impeachment trial? They can't risk it.
Not a fan, Napolitano: Trump's 'dog whistles of lawless behavior' call into question his fitness for office, while, also not a fan, Rep. Adam Schiff: Trump's Potentially Impeachable Offenses Include Bribery from Anti-American NPR. John McCormack at NR, GOP Senator Kennedy: Quid Pro Quo ‘Probably’ Impeachable if Trump’s Motive Was Political. But what if the political motive was combined with a motive to reform corruption in the Ukraine. Things are never so clear. MOTUS A.D. Squid Pro Quo: The Tentacles Are Complicated.
First, the lead role of “Whistleblower” will again be played by the understudy, Rep. Adam Schiff. The audience can expect more emotional “parody” performance art on his part.

Second, the allegation of “Quid Pro Quo” will be replaced with the terms “extortion” and “bribery” because, well it’s “complicated” and as Rep. Himes explained on one of the Interchangeable Sunday Morning Television Shows:
“Number one, when you're trying to persuade the American people of something that is really pretty simple, which is the that the president acted criminally and extorted in the way a mob boss would extort somebody, a vulnerable foreign country, it's probably best not to use Latin words to explain it.”
Stand in terms - such as corruption, abuse of power, extortion and bribery - were focus grouped with potential audience members and the later two were found to invoke the greatest emotional response and hence were selected.

So I’m going to predict that you will enjoy the show as long as you keep a couple of caveats in mind: 1) Adam Schiff is a bad actor and 2) the concept of “extortion” and “bribery” only apply in cases where both parties are subject to a set of common, domestic laws which make them illegal. That does not apply in the arena of foreign relations where they do not.

Number 2, above, may be a non-starter for some critics, like Andrew McCarthy. He explains in “uncomplicated” terms that even Democrat partisan should be able to understand:
Foreign relations typically involve quid pro quo arrangements. Governments do not ordinarily assist each other out of fondness. Nations pursue their interests in the world. Where interests align, they assist each other. Where interests are opposed, they are adverse to each other. In any event, they bargain with each other to advance their interests. It is a matter of “We want you to do this; what do we need to do – whether for you or to you – to make you do it?”
I wonder if these same partisan hacks would object if President Trump conducted extortion in extracting a “quid pro quo” from Mexico in order to stem the flow of illegal drugs into our country. Or if he “extorted” Iran with threatened sanctions in order to get them to stop their drive to nuclear armament? (Technically I think we know the answer to that last one.)
NewsBusters, Impeachment Frenzy: TV Networks Blast Trump With 96% Negative News. Only 96%? Communist dictators typically get 97% of the vote. David Graham at the Atlantic whines Republicans Know Trump Is Innocent—They’re Trying to Figure Out Why, There can be multiple reasons.

Sundance again, Senator Burr: “Senate Impeachment Trial Will Last 6 to 8 weeks”…
It looks like the House impeachment is now a foregone conclusion. To wit the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence (SSCI) Chairman Richard Burr has announced the schedule outline for the upcoming Senate Impeachment Trial. . . .
Move to dismiss the charges based on prosecutorial misconduct by Adam Schiff, and get back to the business of doing nothing. Much more at the link, of course.

First Frost

It's flirted with 32 F a few nights recently, but last night, after a rainy, and sometime snow showery day where the temperatures stayed barely above freezing, it dropped to a chilly 26 overnight. Which means the leaf fall will start in earnest.

A vet tip via Ed Driscol at Insty:



The first statement is a lie. Skye wanted out at 3 PM last night, and is still curled up in the garden, despite having a dog door to get in. As to the second? I don't know, but I have my suspicions.

Another Wet Shirt Wednesday

Lauren Summer - "Brand Executive"
The Wombat is back in business, with Rule Five Sunday: Black Widow.





Poor Planning to Cost Annapolis $50 Million

Tuesday, November 12, 2019
City Dock
From the Annapolis Capital Gazette: Annapolis begins $50 million campaign to save City Dock
That’s the projected price tag for an ambitious and attractive plan to save City Dock — the loose term describing the public areas along Dock Street, Compromise Street and Susan B. Cambell Park — from the ravages of sea-level rise on the Chesapeake Bay.

The plan released last month includes flood barriers, new green space, mixed-use areas for community events and a system of interconnected pathways to draw pedestrians and cyclists downtown. It is expected to unfold over the next five years with a projected completion date of March 2024.

It is an urgent project not only for needed changes it would bring to downtown Annapolis but for a financing mechanism that will focus resources on paying for solutions to the floodwaters rising all along the Chesapeake Bay.
I'm actually amazed, and a little impressed that they didn't make a climate change pitch out of this.
Proponents of the City Dock action plan want to create a financial authority, similar to the Maryland Stadium Authority, to pay for redevelopment with bonds or other longterm financial structures.

Without this authority, this plan is doomed to become the 10th failed effort to yank City Dock out of its 1980s complacency and shove it toward a mid-21st-century future — and worse.

The planned measures to address flooding are complicated and expensive. Organizations behind this project — the City of Annapolis, Historic Annapolis, the National Park Service, the Urban Land Institute, the Chesapeake Conservancy and others — are about to begin a campaign to get the public on board.
It would seem to me that there are a lot of businesses nearby who rely on tourist dollars tied to City Dock should be more than happy to contribute a bit to the project, to help maitain their own long-term viability. Of course, they'll only do that if they can't pawn it off on local, state and federal governments. They ain't stupid.
How much of that effort is at building support for the financing authority is unclear. Organizers describe it as a local authority, but the model could work for similar projects that will be needed from Crisfield to Havre de Grace and beyond.

Mayor Gavin Buckley and others are seeking a meeting with Gov. Larry Hogan to win his support, a good move. We hope Hogan sees the potential to make this project a model for the rest of Maryland and create a legacy as a governor who took concrete action to deal with the climate emergency now upon us.
Actually, it might be a little unfair of me to blame Annapolis for poor planning on this. How were they to know, in 1649, when the city was first established, that sea level was rising. In fact, as far back as we have tidal records, the sea level at Annapolis has been rising at about 3.6 mm per year, with no sign of an acceleration in that rate:

Media Rich Russiagate

A media rich edition. From Jerry Dunleavy at WaEx new that Nellie Ohr met Christopher Steele at Mayflower Hotel the day before FBI's Trump-Russia investigation began. Sometimes they really are out to get you. Michael Van der Galien at PJ Media, Sara Carter Slams the Deep State for Targeting Trump: 'This Is Witch Hunt 2.0'
and sundance at CTH sends along Sean Hannity Provides Latest Tick Tock – IG Report Will Contain Criminal Referrals…



Some analysis from Byron York at Wa Ex, Democrats have a Colonel Vindman problem
Here are four problems with the Vindman testimony:

1) Beyond his opinions, he had few new facts to offer. . .
2) Vindman withheld important information from investigators. . .
3) There were notable gaps in Vindman's knowledge. . .
4) Vindman was a creature of a bureaucracy that has often opposed President Trump. . .
And from Ace, Surprise! The Same Media That Spent a Week Lecturing People That It Was a Crime to Criticize LTC Vindman Now Flip-Flop and Start Attacking LTC Hickman, For Having The Audacity to Criticize Vindman "It's okay to attack gauche, deplorable veterans." From "Bonchie" at Red State, Alexander Vindman’s Lawyer Makes A Fool Of Himself And It Shows His Coordination With Adam Schiff, which will work in the House, but not in the Senate. From Matt Margolis, PJ Media, Reports That Lt. Col. Vindman Was Fired Over His Testimony are Fake News Sundance provides Dobbs and Fitton Discuss Vindman’s “Deep State” Coup Effort….



And "Whistleblower #1"? At Am Spec, Ann Hendershott digs into The Radicalizing of Eric Ciaramella - It starts at Yale and a professor of Arabic who romanticizes terrorism.
In fact, long before he was digging up dirt with the DNC’s Alexandra Chalupa about President Trump’s mythical collusion with Russia, Ciaramella was involved in leading a protest over what he believed was the poor treatment of Bassam Frangieh, a radical professor of Arabic studies at Yale. On April 15, 2005, then first-year Yale student Ciaramella dressed in all white to lead a contingent of 10 similarly dressed first-year Yale Arabic students to the offices of the provost and the president of the university to demand that the university provide an incentive to encourage Frangieh to stay at Yale. The students were unhappy because Frangieh had decided earlier in the school year to accept a tenure-track position at the University of Delaware.
Charlie Martin at PJ Media Eric Ciaramella or Voldemort?  "He Who Is Not To Be Named." Ace,  Mollie Hemingway Says, Factually, That Eric Ciaramella Has Been Reported to be the Whistleblower and the Seditious Media Attacks "Howie Kuntz was said to be sputtering in rage."
At CR, Levin slams ‘feckless’ Senate Republicans for trying to keep the identity of the ‘so-called whistleblower’ secret



Debra J. Saunder at AmSpec, Count on Big Media to Protect Anti-Trump Sources

Althouse, "A key to Mr. Biden’s relevance as vice president was his willingness to take jobs nobody else wanted."
. . . That "without evidence" — in "Mr. Giuliani has claimed, without evidence..." — would make more sense to me if the same words were used when people are imagining Trump's intentions based on something that we know he did.

We know what Trump said in his Ukraine phone call, but we continually hear that's strong evidence that he was using U.S. monetary aid to bribe Ukraine into manufacturing dirt on his political opponent to serve his personal interests.

Why don't they say people only claim that without evidence? We have evidence of Biden's statements and activities, but we don't know what was in his head, but he could have been motivated by a desire to cover for his son. That's an inference you could make from the evidence, and it's always hard to prove what's inside somebody's head.

I'd just like to see a consistent approach to talking about other people's thoughts. You could say "without evidence" whenever you're making an inference about thought from the evidence that we do have. Or you could make inferences from the evidence and just speak about them as if the inferences are evidence.

Both of those approaches are bad, and I know damned well that nobody understanding the choice and wanting to be consistent and neutral would pick either option. What I want is clear speech about what evidence there is, the need to make inferences from the evidence, which inferences are stronger, and what we should do when there are different possible inferences.
NYT, through Hot Air, whines that  Giuliani Associate Says He Gave Demand For Biden Inquiry To Ukrainians. I don't really care, do you? And the AP, National security officials objected to stopping Ukraine aid. Fine, they recommend, but the President decides. Reuters, former Bushie, Former U.S. top diplomat Rice concerned by shadow diplomacy on Ukraine
Or as Insty notes OR (3) It’s all bullshit, isn’t it?

Josh Hammer at DaWire has the background The Complete Timeline Of The Trump-Ukraine Story

Robert Curry at AmGreat, Has the Coup Already Happened? "We have an elite that does not accept the American idea of government—government by, for, and of the people." At DaWire, Liberal Democrat Dershowitz Compares Democrats To Russian Secret Police Under Stalin, Blisters CNN



Hugh Hewitt at WaPoo, How the Senate can stop a purely partisan impeachment. Just vote to not to proceed to consider each of the articles of impeachment. Politico whines that Republicans plot counterattack for impeachment hearings, and from Legal Insurrection, “Impeachment” Hearings: Republicans Plan To Put Biden and Democrats on Trial, and Schiff Is Not Happy
“Committee sources” tell Axios, linked above, the goal of the hearings is to keep things “narrowly focused” in order to help “accelerate the impeachment timeline”:
Between the lines: Committee sources tell Axios’ Alayna Treene their goal is to keep the public hearings narrowly focused so that it’s both easy for the American public to follow and helps accelerate the impeachment timeline. They’re focused on bringing in the career officials who revealed the most about Trump and Ukraine — meaning don’t expect many new names or faces as the inquiry shifts to a more public setting.
Let’s really read between the lines here. The fact that they want to “accelerate” public impeachment proceedings goes against everything House leaders including Schiff, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Judiciary Chair Jerry Nadler have been saying for months regarding the Ukraine call controversy and the Russia collusion investigation: that there is no rush to judgment and no rush to impeach.

Of course, that was an obvious lie, but the sources telling Axios their goal is to speed up the process just confirms it.

Secondly, Taylor, Kent, and Yovanovitch will go first because they are supposedly the Democrats’ star witnesses who Schiff and Co. believe will provide to the public the most damaging case against President Trump.

The most revealing information from the Axios report, however, is in how the committee seeks to keep the public hearings “narrowly focused.” The stated reason is to make it easier for the public to follow and to speed up the process.

The real reason is because Democrats want to obstruct House Republicans from their strategy of broadening the inquiry via their selection of witnesses in an effort to show the American people there are justifiable reasons why President Trump would want the Joe and Hunter Biden issue and the DNC server issue further investigated by Ukrainian officials.

After all, if the case can be made that Trump’s requests were legitimate and served American interests, then the reasons given for impeaching him will evaporate.
CNS News, Democrat Himes: Americans Will Hear from 'Immensely Patriotic, Beautifully Articulate' Witnesses as opposed to the immensely fascistic, ugly, poorly spoken Trump supporters. WaFeeBee: PBS Correspondent: Dems Hoping for Tearful Impeachment Hearings
Democrats 'want Marie Yovanovitch to be there because I'm told she cried during her deposition'. Breitbart, Democrats Shift from ‘Quid Pro Quo’ to ‘Bribery’ and ‘Extortion’ Ahead of Public Impeachment Hearings. Still trying to create a crime.



Capt. Ed at Hot Air, Moyers: For The Sake Of The Nation, PBS Must Go Wall-To-Wall On Impeachment Hearings. I would expect nothing less from the former Press Secretary for LBJ. And from John Sexton, Soledad O’Brien: Brian Stelter Should Be Ashamed Of Himself.
"Cillizza-level inanity" I'll have to file that under "useful phrases". From Clarice Feldman at AmThink, the Impeachment Mashup
Democrats have tried to impeach every elected Republican president since Dwight D. Eisenhower. They’ve never succeeded and there’s no reason to believe this time is different. As Bill Mitchell tweeted:
“If China thought there were any real chance of Trump’s impeachment ofrloss in 2020, they wouldn’t be negotiating and making trade deals now. The stock market and China know the same thing. Trump won’t be impeached and he wins in 2020.”
Why this practice persists is that they are continually reluctant to accept political outcomes they don’t like. David Hirsanyi argues this point well as well as illustrating perfectly the left’s projection of their actions onto their opponents . . .
CNS News, Sen. John Kennedy: Dems Are Giving Trump 'A Fair and Impartial Firing Squad'



Tanlines Tuesday

Fishing edition, because there's nothing like reeling in a big fish to move the bikini slightly askew:


The Wombat is back in business, with Rule Five Sunday: Black Widow.








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