Thursday, June 23, 2016

Excusing Brad Ashford's tardy, tepid sit-in support. He probably has his reasons.

The current incarnation of former Republican Brad Ashford is the sort of go-along get-along Republicrat that alternately makes us very glad Lee Terry is gone and disgusted enough to  throw a shoe at the TV (the latter would be for Ashford's contemptible betrayal of Nebraska farmers and ranchers in supporting Keystone XL).
     As a newly-minted Democratic congressman in one of America's reddest states, we imagine he prays nightly to the tightrope-balancing shrine of Senator Ben Nelson.
     Right now, Ashford is being criticized on Twitter for his silence, then tepid support of the Democratic sit-in over gun control legislation.
     As people began to notice the conspicuous absence of his ass from the House of Representatives rug, he tweeted something about "standing" with his Democratic colleagues, which made us laugh almost as much as he must have while tweeting it.
     It's easy to see the practical reason Ashford isn't sitting cross-legged on the floor. He knows that Dark Money Koch Bros. ad agencies — not to mention his September opponent, Air Force Gen. Don Bacon — are drooling at the prospect of ripping him him in TV attack ads as a leftist refusenik stuck in 60s Yippiedom. Obviously, Bradford ain't gonna let that photo op happen.
     But there could also be a principled reason that Ashford isn't willing to go to the carpet on this.
     We remember the Brad Ashford of the Unicameral Judiciary Committee and his cross indignation at contrived and specious antigay testimony. He knows bullshit when he sees it, and within the bounds of political survival, is loathe to suffer it. We're guessing he finds the current no-fly-no-buy bill toxic. (We could be wrong; after all he didn't find Keystone XL chemical horror show toxic.)
     As even people who don't worship at the Church of Glock have noticed, adding weight to the terrorism watch list is an ugly, potholed, rutted road that ends in a civil liberties swamp.
     Secret government lists that effectively limit where you can go and what you can buy are the very definition of 1984 totalitarianism.
     Naturally Republicans in the main only get exercised about this when their assault weapon fetish is reconsidered and they're hypocrites for it, (don't expect to tell you that the Reagan administration put Nelson Mandela on the terrorism watch list, where he stayed until 2008 or that liberal Actor Mark Ruffalo was added to it) but that doesn't mean the convenient excuse of on-the-NRA-take Republicans' is wrong.
     We saw a chart the other day which revealed that 280,000 people are on the mistake-riddled terrorism watch list (no breakdown of how many are U.S. citizens) for which the government can show no link whatever to terrorist organizations.
     Obviously you can still be a dangerous lone wolf without subscribing to the Al Queda Post-Dispatched, (See Omar Mateen, Reps Steve King and Louie Gohmert, and Wayne LaPierre), but without any evidence whatever of links to terrorist organizations, shouldn't you have at least be able to confront your accuser?
     Democrats who want to expand the use of secret government lists, whose dragnets offer little to no recourse to ensnared innoocents ought to be ashamed of themselves. Assault weapons should be banned for everyone except enlisted military personnel, period.
     Conditioning any ban on a secret blacklist compiled by anonymous, unaccountable functionaries at the NSA, FBI, CIA, Homeland Security or the Mayberry PD is a really, really bad idea.
     If that's what's giving Brad Ashford pause, he's right.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

In Iowa, Patty Judge's ads are nailing Chuck Grassley to the wall and Donald Trump is the hammer

 From The Hill:
     Grassley has been perennially popular in his home state, where he's built a reputation as a GOP senator with an independent streak.
     But a poll this week conducted by a Democratic-leaning firm for the Constitutional Responsibility Project found Grassley leading Democratic challenger Patty Judge just 48 percent to 41 percent.
     It’s a margin far below Grassley’s past elections, when he’s frequently won at least 60 percent of the vote.

Here's Perry Mason cross-examining the Hill Street Blues pizza man

1966 was Perry Mason's last season (Bonanza roped too many of its viewers) but CBS did what it had to do to distract Raymond Burr from his orchids. Daniel Travanti wouldn't become a star on Hill Street Blues as Captain Frank Furillo for another 15 years. Veronica Hamil's character, public defender Joyce Davenport, called Furillo the pizza man. She slept with him on the down low. By the way, the episode below was called The Case of the Midnight Howler.

Player gets a real (not Gatorade) shampoo in the College World Series Arizona dugout

SB Nation said Cody Deason "received a shower complete with shampoo from Sawyer Gieseke."

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Youtube's biggest star evicted for having loud gay sex. He's straight

Scandinavian YouTube megastar "PewDiePie" (Felix Kjellberg, 45 million subscribers, 12 BILLION — you read that right — views), who now lives in Brighton, in the UK, has been kicked out of his flat by his landlord, who called him a faggot and, who, according to Queerty, accused him of having loud gay sex with his production partner. Naturally, Kjellberg made a video about it:

Sunday, June 19, 2016

End mass shootings the Deb Fischer way with the Thoughts and Prayers video game!

Click on the link below the graphic to play.

Vandalized IA gay bar takes church youth group donation, fixes damage itself, sends money to Orlando

On Thursday, for the second time in recent weeks, Blazing Saddles, a gay bar in Des Moines' East Village was vandalized by rocks through through a window. The latest incident will cost $191 to repair.
    This time, a Christian youth group from the Two Rivers Church showed up with a $160 donation, flowers and cards to show their support, accompanied with cards and flowers. (The vandalism was reported by news media.) The Des Moines Register said the bar accepted the money but will not keep it.
     Bryan Smith, a Blazing Saddle employee, said the small act of kindness meant a lot to their community, but they thought the money needed to go someplace else.
"We thanked them profusely but said 'we're actually going to put this in our Orlando fund, OK?'" Smith said.
The bar has been gathering donations to send to the injured victims and families of the 49 people killed in the Orlando massacreat the Pulse nightclub.

Are voters getting fed up with Sen. Fischer's "thoughts and prayers" song and dance on assault weapons?

Senator Deb Fischer has done a lot of obnoxious things so far, including:
     But none of that is resonating more than the increasing glaring gap between her boilerplate "thoughts and prayers" reactions to gun carnage and her actions in the Senate to block attempts to stop such carnage with common sense laws placing large bullet magazines and high-velocity assault weapons out of the hands of civilians.
     (Click on pictures of tweets, below, to enlarge for easier reading.)

Friday, June 17, 2016

The 54 Senators (4 from NE and IA) who blocked law which could have saved 49 people at gay Orlando club

In 2015, a law to prevent persons on the government's terror watch list from buying guns was defeated in the Senate, mostly by the GOP.
     While AKSARBENT doesn't think Americans on secret government lists should have their rights abridged without recourse, the usual suspects below and at right generally do what the NRA tells them, no matter who gets killed or how disturbed their constituents are about high-velocity military assault rifles being sold to civilians with anger issues or crushes on ISIS.
     We did the math for you: Nebraska Senator Deb Fischer got $101.02 from the NRA per dead body at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando. Joni Ernst got $202.04 per corpse. But Chuck Grassley got a whopping $465.30 for each person shot in the head, heart or who simply bled out during the hours it took for the cops to break into the club. Way to go, Chuck!
     Curiously, Ben Sasse didn't get any money from the NRA.
     Unlike Deb Fischer, he apparently doesn't need to be paid off by
PepĂ© Le Pew Wayne LaPierre of the NRA to do the wrong thing — it just comes naturally to him. 
     Below are all 54 senators with their phone numbers and the amount of blood money they get from the NRA.

Lane Graves wasn't the first child attacked by a Disney alligator; it happened in 1986

Paul Santamaria was eight when he was attacked by a Florida DisneyWorld alligator. His family sued in 1988 and terminated the suit later that year. They won't say whether Disney settled. Smells like a nondisclosure agreement to AKSARBENT.
     Other stories are slowly filtering out about alligator encounters at DisneyWorld. British vacationers were chased, and a lawyer interviewed by CBS yesterday said he had to hustle his son away from two alligators, one of which he said was between six and seven feet long.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Nebraska one of 16 states that lets FBI's sloppy facial recognition system 'match' you to criminals

You can thank the Unicameral and Gov. Heineman for this, although the Nebraska DMV didn't tell anyone at the time that it would be sharing Nebraska driver's license photos by the millions to federal agents. It only told the public that its photos would be scanned to stop fraud and identity theft.

The Nebraska DMV said, at the time, that it had 1.5 million faces. The Government Accounting Office says the State of Nebraska now shares 8 million faces.

How sloppy is the FBI's facial recognition matching?

How sloppy is Nebraska's own facial recognition system?  Who uses it? What is it used for? Those would be good questions for the Nebraska ACLU, wouldn't they?

NE U.S. House candidate Don Bacon:
the definition of crass opportunism

If we were cynical, we'd say, after seeing Don Bacon's campaign graphic, that the massacre in Orlando happened in order to bring Nebraskans his run at House District Two.
    His tweets on the bloodbath mention neither the role a military assault rifle played in the mayhem nor who was targeted, a slap in the face to 50,000 LGBT Nebraskans.
     They say the opposite of love isn't hate, but indifference. Here's Bacon's calculated refusal to acknowledge who got killed in Orlando:
     Our thoughts and prayers are w/ the victims and families affected in #Orlando. It is time that we get serious about defeating ISIS for good.
(Tweeted by Bacon 6/12)
And how's this for good old reactionary GOP condescension?
We are all Americans. Our lives deserve protection regardless of our political differences. #OrlandoUnited
(Tweeted by Bacon, 6/13)
     And how about his exploitation of murder to blame Obama for ISIS, a creation of George Bush (43, the idiot) who destabilized Iraq by removing Saddam Hussein, a despot who squashed Islamic terrorists as ruthlessly as Hillary Clinton's people challenged the credentials of competing Sanders delegates.
     As for Bacon's exhortation to "pray" for people who are already dead, is that anything but the hollow bullet point, standard-issue GOP distraction from efforts to ban high-velocity military assault rifle sales to civilians?
     Democrats spent $400,000 trying to knock Bacon out of the primary in favor of a Tea Party candidate who used to be a Douglas County Commissioner with a record they thought would make him more vulnerable in a general election. They might as well have thrown that money down a rathole, as Bacon demolished Maxwell in the primary.

     Evidently Dems don't think they can beat a military man with no political record.
     If Republicans could take out Georgia Sen. Max Cleland, a Vietnam vet who lost two legs and an arm, in favor of one of their chickenhawks, Sen. Saxby Chambliss, then Nebraska Dems could easily defeat the tone-deaf Bacon, steeped in the pork culture of the Pentagon.
     Go ahead. Make our day. Google "Air Force boondoggle" and then ask yourself if Air Force Gen. Don Bacon would recognize fiscal responsibility in government even if it sat on his lap and called him daddy. (It wouldn't; no child called Government Fiscal Responsibility would ever try to claim Bacon paternity.)
     Dems could hold Bacon's feet to the fire regarding his conspicuous silence about Sen. Deb. Fischer's sleazy vote to hide the allegedly outrageous development costs of the Air Force B-21 from taxpayers.
     Bacon is a poseur and a fiscal hypocrite. Nebraska Democrats can't figure out how to win with that?

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Your idiot GOP: U.S. House rules chairman says Pulse wasn't a gay club — it was actually mostly Latinos!

We're betting that Rep. Pete Sessions, whose Dallas district (32) evidently isn't the home of Texas' smartest voters, has never met a Venn diagram that he could understand.
     But not to worry! AKSARBENT has a movie, Plata Quemada, for him to watch. It has lots of gunfire! Unfortunately, the shootin' involves two boyfriends wasting a lot of cops (based on a true story!), but still...

Monday, June 13, 2016

Yesterday, the NRA had to delete one of its tweets...

Seen at Omaha's 2016 Summer Arts Festival

Why, the disembodied heads of Casey Bridges' garden sculptures were so mesmerizing to us that we forgot to include the head of the only human subject in our picture of the Grass Valley artist's work.

Pictures from Omaha vigil for Orlando shooting victims

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Why did you name your cat Oops?

That frequent question was one of many reminiscences at Friday's memorial of Tom Rudloff, proprietor of the Antiquarium Bookstore. His answer was, "Well, he doesn't seem to mind." The 1989 photo below was rerun by the Omaha World-Herald in 2015 and may be purchased from the newspaper, less the text overlays you see below.
     AKSARBENT will post video from the memorial later this week when it becomes available to us.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Antiquarium's Tom Rudloff dead at 76; Omaha institution a pillar of support for artists and musicians

Rudloff, circa 1970s; photo via estate of David Sink. Sink, who
passed away in 2012, once drolly suggested that Rudloff install
a huge neon sign atop the Antiquarium, alternately flashing the
Update 3: There WILL be a memorial service for Thomas F. Rudloff at John A. Gentleman Mortuary at 1010 N 72nd St. in Omaha on Friday, June 3, 2016.
     Family will receive friends two hours earlier than previously announced, starting at 2, not 4 pm. Service to begin at 5 pm. 
No reception will be held on June 3.
     A second memorial service, followed by a reception, will be held in Brownville, NE, at a later date, TBD.
     We'll post that information as soon as we receive it.

Several close friends of Tom Rudloff, cofounder, with his sister, Judy, of Omaha's Antiquarium Bookstore, have informed AKSARBENT that he passed away this morning of heart failure following pneumonia contracted after chemotherapy for a third bout with cancer.
     His used bookstore opened in 1969 in what is now downtown's Eugene Leahy Mall, moving later to 1215 Harney on the northern edge of Omaha's Old Market to make room for the mall, and, in 2006, was moved to an empty school in  Brownville, Nebraska.
     The Antiquarium's huge stock of used books beckoned generations of Omahans and was augmented by a second-floor art gallery named for sculptor Bill Farmer.
     The store's record shop grew to fill the building's basement. Dave Sink, its manager, became a prime behind-the-scenes mover and local legend in his own right in the development of Omaha as a center of Indie Rock and in the rise of such acts as Simon Joyner, Bright Eyes and the brilliant solo career of Conor Oberst.
     After building the store's record shop into a formidable attraction in its own right, Sink passed away in January, 2012.
     In the 1970s, the Antiquarium, Rudloff, and Omaha itself were the benefactors of an Eastern Airlines "Wings of Man' radio commercial narrated by celebrated film director Orson Welles.
     AKSARBENT was passed a cassette tape of the ad years ago and added the following video (in which Welles' name is misspelled in a subtitle):

At 2:06:55 in the video below, Rudloff explains how Young & Rubican, Eastern Airline's ad agency, picked the Antiquarium to be featured in its nationwide radio ads and how it took fifteen years for him to be paid for the release he signed for appearing in the advertisement.

     In 2014, the son of the late Luther Jones, Atiim, perceptively interviewed Rudloff over the course of two hours about the history of his bookstore and art gallery.

     Some high points from the interview, which doesn't really get started until the 14:44 mark, include Rudloff explaining why he moved the Antiquarium to Brownville, how he fell into the book business, the fact that he started the Farmer gallery to save Bill Farmer's art from Farmer himself, and why he decided not to become a priest.
     Here's how he wanted to be remembered:
You know, I'm not sure that my view of how I want to be remembered is more important than how people choose to remember me. And for that reason, I'm not sure that I have an answer to that. Obviously there's none of us that does not want to be liked. And always, it comes down to what point do we choose not to do x, y and z even though they're not going to like us when we don't do x, y and z. I think, because of my enormous admiration for Bill [sculptor Farmer] and [wife] Marge, I think what I would probably have to say — and I'm not giving this full throat — I would like to say that I would like to be remembered as someone who at least tried to accept people the way they were.
A Personal Aside:
     AKSARBENT has patronized the Antiquarium for 30 years and has spent many happy hours there listening to the discourse over art, politics, books, and more politics presided over by the erudite Rudloff who spoke English, French, German and Spanish. Sports and music were the province of the downstairs record shop kingdom, ruled by the ascerbically witty Sink, a devotee not only of popular music, but of baseball lore and history, and a business mentor to many local bands, whose efforts he somehow was able to persuade John Peel to play on the BBC's Radio 1 "Sessions" broadcasts that Peel hosted.
     As for Rudloff, music was not his first, second, third, or fourth love. Once during a game of "Who am I?" AKSARBENT chose Renee Fleming, causing a stumped Tom to say, "Well, who ever heard of HER?" and, in response, a book-browsing woman called out from the second floor stacks: "I HAVE!"
     Of the thousands of posts AKSARBENT has made, this is by far our most reluctant effort, as the death which necessitated it has made our world smaller and less joyful. Most of the friends and acquaintances we made in Omaha since moving here from Lincoln in the late 1980s were of people met at the Antiquarium or their friends. It would be impossible for us to estimate the synergies forged, relationships born, and art, political and entrepreneurial alliances made at Tom's "business."
     He was socialist in outlook, not just politically, but personally: his lifelong generosity kept the wolf from the doors of many people who had nowhere else to turn.
     He never bought any goods or services from a big box store if he could get them from someone he knew personally, even if it was more expensive that way. The implicit lesson — keep your money local; support your friends and community — is one he underscored every day of his life, always by example rather by pontificating, though he never shied from the latter on other subjects.
     If you have an anecdote about Tom or a memory of the Antiquarium, please share it below in the comments (allow up to 24 hours for your comment to appear, pending review by our obscenity/libel/spam gatekeepers).

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Friday, May 27, 2016

Father Knows Best jerked our chain again today

The episode was The Great Experiment, first broadcast in December of 1958, in which, according to IMBD, paterfamilias Jim:
...attends a meeting where the speaker's topic is to get more out of life and find out what is going on their [sic] world. Jim becames enthused and tries to pass this philosophy on to his family...
We ask you: Does the skeevy schemer in the middle
look like a relative of Perez Hilton or what?
     Good enough. Anyway Jim Anderson's break-out-of-your-comfort-zone marching orders to son Bud involved a map to a door with a secret knock code, which describes either a speakeasy in the 20s or, in the 50s, a gay bar!
    Naturally Bud took along his hotter best bud, Kippy, and both were admitted by a nerd with a evil leer who promptly relocked the door.
     Fabulous! We really liked where this seemed to be going...
     Alas, it turned out to be some kind of lame secret math club where a handsome teacher got Kip and Bud going... about the math involved in calculating the sun, solar flares, distances from earth and zzzzz.
     We've never seen such a terrific setup wasted on so cruel a bait and switch. That episode where Bud flirted a little with Dad before heading out to the baths had a much better payoff.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Here's a talent you'll never see at a damn Trump beauty pageant

Why don't girls ever think of stuff like this? What's WRONG with them? We invite your comments and explanations below. In fact, we just trolled for them, didn't we?

That one time when Dagwood rattled Blondie with a reference to dudes making out

It may have been indirect, but it was unmistakable. Dagwood even managed to shock the dog, Daisy, with the only known homosexual reference in the history of that comic strip. Betcha Jake Gyllenhaal never dreamed Brokeback Mountain would permeate Americana that effectively.

Peter Thiel's creepy apologist: Dilbert creator Scott Adams

Peter Thiel, the greed-is-good cofounder of PayPal and financial Godfather of Facebook, on whose board he sits, was just outed as funding Hulk Hogan's suit against Gawker, which outed Thiel as gay in 2007 to a much wider circle than those he had already informed.
     Print and Internet media are not amused. As the story blew up today, headlines and tweets like the following, abounded:
  • Get ready for a serious chilling effect if billionaire funders begin bankrolling cases against media companies
  • "Thiel’s tactics in going after Gawker are very, very frightening for anybody who believes in freedom of speech"
  • The First Amendment exists precisely to stop people like Peter Thiel 
  • Secretly taking out a website because it was mean to you is "philanthropy."  
  • Thiel is a Trump supporter. He seems to be doing exactly what Trump has said he wishes he could do more w/ the media
  • Wow. Peter Thiel didn’t look for lawsuits to fund, he funded lawyers to look for Gawker victims to file lawsuits.
     So at the end of the day it is gay: 1, gay: zip. (Nick Denton, Gawker's publisher, is also gay.)
     At least, reprehensible as it may have been, Thiel's revenge was within the law. Which brings us to Dilbert Creator Scott Adams' blog post about the Thiel revelation:

     Adams' sinister innuendo doesn't specify legal or illegal means, which is one of the intimidating advantages of making vague threats, isn't it?
     Adams, who frequently lauds Donald Trump though he said in 2015 he wouldn't "endorse" anyone this election, had more to say about making the world a better place by doing whatever he could to "destroy" publications (Salon, Huffpo and Gawker) that he thinks wronged him.
     Here's Keith Olberman ridiculing Thiel's tax evasion scheme, "seasteading," a few years ago.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Quick. Name a question your state googles more than any other state

In Massachusetts, home of many elite private universities, the question is: "How many beers in a keg?" In Texas, home of the most politically stupid electorate outside neighboring Oklahoma (Is Obama Muslim?), the question is "Where is the Internet?" (Tell them it's in Massachusetts at Harvard University, run by drunks.)
     How did Estately, a real estate search firm, find all this out? Methodology here.
     In the Cornhusker State, folks google "What is Tinder?" more than any other state because everybody in Nebraska is gay and uses Grindr. HAHAHAHA.

Brad Paisley parodies antiTrans HB2 bathroom bill

The NFL, 160 companies, and dozens of celebrities have spoken out against HB2. Many entertainers, like Bruce Sprinsteen, Ringo Star and Jimmy Buffet will no longer perform in North Carolina. (Despite his ridicule of HB2 Paisley has not cancelled an upcoming performance in the Tar Heel State.
     Country stars, as a group, have been comparatively reluctant to mock antagonists of their gay fans.
     Exhibit A: Dolly Parton, an icon in some gay quarters, has not once publicly opposed any of the various bills in the legislature of her state targeting LGBTs.
     The Dollywood mogul, who kicks off her current tour in Greensboro, NC, had this to say about antigay legislation (via Queerty):
     When pressed for her reaction to the current wave of anti-LGBT legislation in states like North Carolina and Mississippi, Parton repeated her intention to play all the shows on her 2016 tour. “Through the years everybody has known that I have an open, generous heart and I believe that all people should be treated with respect,” she reiterated. “I really don’t like to get caught up into controversial issues, and I certainly don’t think it’s fair to the public. I can address whatever my thoughts are, if need be, from the stage.”

Monday, May 23, 2016

Hospital wheels dying patient outside to allow his two horses a farewell

Roberto Gonzalez, shot and paralyzed in Vietnam in 1970, nevertheless became a horse rancher. Here, his two horses, Ringo and Sugar, say goodbye.

CBS reports on firing of Padres contractor who sandbagged and humiliated gay chorus

After the San Diego Gay Men's Chorus assembled on the field, a taped rendition of the national anthem was played, leaving the players nothing to do except be escorted off the field to jeers from the crowd.

After assembling on the field a taped rendition of the national anthem was played, leaving the players nothing to do except be escorted off the field to jeers from the crowd.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Biggest NE newspaper worried antiLGBT vow by state GOP may cause NCAA to move College World Series

A 2012 drive around the College World Series venue:

     The College World Series, due to begin June 18th, has been held in Omaha for the last 66 years. In 2009, the NCAA and College World Series of Omaha, Inc. announced a 25-year contract extension keeping the CWS in Omaha through 2035.
     But today, the Omaha World-Herald wondered, in a front page story whether the hostility toward LGBTs displayed by the state's GOP at its convention last LGBTweek could change that. Last week, the Nebraska GOP added a plank to its platform last weekend calling for a law restricting transgender people to restrooms and locker rooms corresponding to their birth certificate gender.
     In an April 27th press release, headlined "Board of Governors approves anti-discrimination process for championships bids," the organization declared "Hosts must demonstrate environment will safeguard dignity of participants, spectators." Unlike North Carolina and Mississippi, Nebraska has no laws enabling "religious liberty" enabled discrimination of LGBTs. On the other hand, unlike neighboring Iowa, the state has no laws protecting LGBTs from discrimination. Omaha's municipal ordinance now protects LGBTs from job and public accommodations discrimination, but not from housing discrimination, a loophole supported by the current GOP mayor of Omaha, Jean Stothert, who was on the city council during passage of the ordinance change and who was hostile to any LGBT antibias measures.

The World-Herald aired its concern thusly, today:
     Passing a transgender bathroom law could jeopardize Nebraska’s long history with the College World Series and its hopes of hosting future volleyball championships and basketball regionals.
     The Nebraska Republican Party called for such a law at its state convention last weekend.
     But the proposal could collide with a new NCAA policy opposing discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
     The college sports organization’s board of governors adopted the policy April 27, after North Carolina and some other states passed laws allowing people to be refused services based on being gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender.
The Herald's alarm (usually economic and rarely driven by social justice) extended to:
     ...TD Ameritrade Park, which is slated to host the College World Series through 2035, and the CenturyLink Center, which has hosted three NCAA volleyball championships, plus volleyball and men’s basketball regional tournaments. CenturyLink will host the regional finals of the men’s basketball tournament in 2018.
     Lincoln’s Pinnacle Bank Arena and the Devaney Center have hosted some regional NCAA events as well, arranged through the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
     The paper also wondered how the GOP threat would affect bidding on NCAA "tournament sites for volleyball, men’s basketball, wrestling and other sports in December."
Above: tweet from Nebraska's
Democratic Party Chairman, Vince Powers
     Governor Pete Ricketts, a foe of gay marriage in Nebraska even when he jetted to Chicago to attend his gay sister Laura's Big Gay Wedding in Illinois, is the multimillionaire scion of TD Ameritrade, which paid millions for naming rights to the College World Series venue in Omaha.
     Were the series and its attendant TV cameras, radio microphones and print reporters and photographers to move elsewhere, TD Ameritrade's return on its naming rights investment would be next to worthless.
     Despite that, Gov. Ricketts, who has never given LGBTs in Nebraska the time of day, took the following (public) stance:
     Ricketts said the NCAA policy or the potential loss of NCAA events would not affect the positions he takes.
     “They need to make rules as they see fit, but it doesn’t impact my thought processes on what we need to do here in Nebraska,” he said.

Batshit crazy GOP Sen. Kintner,
of Papillion
Reliably loose cannon State Senator Bill Kintner of Papillion told the Herald there is no reason for Nebraska to consider the NCAA policy or the possibility of losing out on hosting events when legislating.
“Economic terrorism is not a reason to make laws,” he said. “The NCAA is a bunch of left-wing loonies.”
Nate Grasz, a policy analyst for the Nebraska Family Alliance, said that the state should not bend to the NCAA policy.
“We’re well known as being welcoming, friendly and respectful to everyone,” he said. “If they (the NCAA) felt for some reason they couldn’t come here, it would be their loss.”
     This, from a representative of an organization which gathered 10,000 signatures to kill an LGBT rights ordinance in Lincoln.

     Finally, Omaha's local sketch comedy show, Omaha Live! hilariously (and impressively) weighed in on bathroom bills last night:

SNL's brilliant Clinton, Sanders sendup

This is SNL at its very, very best with talent-without-boundaries Kate McKinnon (literally) leading the way. It's as inspired an opening as we've ever seen in the history of the show. The take-no-prisoners viciousness of the Hillary vivisection is redeemed only by the writers' hilarious, infectious glee in doing so. Bernie again gets a pass, as his parody remains unfailingly affectionate.
     By the way, AKSARBENT saw another terrific parody this weekend, which you probably didn't if you don't live in Omaha. Not to worry, we have the video. Check out the hijacking of a venerable showtune in an elaborately-staged takedown of bathroom bills.

A gaspingly funny musical parody of bathroom bills

AKSARBENT doesn't usually brag on its city, but this is fantastic! We've seen nothing better anywhere on this issue. A giddy delight from start to finish. (Sample: "Lindsay Graham? So's your old man!")

Here's the original for you non-show queens, that you may better understand how cleverly Ya Got Trouble from The Music Man, was hijacked and repurposed above.

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Saturday, May 21, 2016

Coweta Co., Ga prosecutors wouldn't release video of man tased to death by sheriff's deputies; the New York Times got it anyway

As we watched this revolting scene, the adjectives which came to mind were: incompetent, hot-headed, unprofessional and homicidal. The Times noted that the two sheriff's deputies employed their tasers 15 times before Mr. Sherman stopped breathing; after which, the extent of their remorse on the video was a fear voiced by one that he would lose his job. Sherman was apparently wacked out on synthetic marijuana ingested days earlier and became fearful of his surroundings.

     Neither of the Coweta Co., Georgia sheriff's deputies has been fired; in fact neither has even been suspended.
     “For four minutes and 10 seconds after he said ‘I quit,’ they still tased him and kept him on the ground,” he added. “That’s torture, and they killed him.”
     Mr. Sherman’s death was initially investigated by the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, which made the evidence it collected available to the district attorney of Coweta County, Peter J. Skandalakis.
     Mr. Stewart said the prosecutor’s office told him this week that the deputies had not been suspended and were still working.