Nobody From Nowhere (@i8dc)

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Archive for the ‘Debunkery’ Category

Orrin Hatch (2016) vs. Orrin Hatch (1987-2008)

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“The duty of the President to nominate and the duty of the Senate to give its advice and consent to Supreme Court Justices are among the most important functions of our constitutional government. Politicizing the sensitive Supreme Court selection process carries the danger of permanently injuring the independence, integrity, and institutional individuality of the third branch.”

— Senator Orrin Hatch, July 30, 1997

For weeks now, Senator Orrin Hatch has been the point man for the GOP’s campaign of deception, deflection, and distraction as it frantically tries to keep the American people from fully understanding the severity of the obstruction currently occurring in the Senate. He’s written quite a few pieces, both for press releases and for publications such as Time, USA Today, The New York Times, Bloomberg View, The Deseret News, and the Salt Lake Tribune.

Hatch has killed lots of trees telling much the same story: Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by David Clayton

April 4, 2016 at 8:34 pm

Posted in Debunkery

Did Biden Lie About The “Biden Rule”? And Does It Matter?

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As I outlined here, the historical precedents claimed as justification by Republican Senators refusing even to consider Merrick Garland’s nomination to the Supreme Court don’t actually support their position. The precedents actually support holding hearings and a vote. Highlights:

  • The last time a vacancy opened on the court during in an election year was 1932. The Republican Senate confirmed Republican president Hoover’s nominee in 9 days.
  • The last time a vacancy opened in an election year with adversaries controlling the Senate and White House was March of 1888. Grover Cleveland’s nominee was confirmed in 81 days by a Republican Senate.

Since Garland’s nomination, Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah has emerged as the leading voice on the Republican side, which seems to have settled on a statement by then-Judiciary Committee Chairman Joe Biden proffered on the Senate floor on June 25, 1992 while laying out a broad argument for changing the Supreme Court confirmation process. Twisting the blade of what they clearly consider to be an effective weapon, they have dubbed it “the Biden Rule.” Read the rest of this entry »

Written by David Clayton

March 29, 2016 at 12:30 am

Posted in Debunkery, Punditry

Election Years, Supreme Court Nominees, and the Grand Obstruction Party

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On this date (March 23) in 1888, Chief Justice of the United States Morrison Waite died unexpectedly of pneumonia.

This is relevant today because 1888 was the most recent time a Supreme Court vacancy opened with a Democrat in the White House and the GOP holding a Senate majority. It was also an election year, so it is the best comparison history provides for today’s situation.

Justice Waite died 228 days before that year’s election. Justice Scalia’s death happened 269 days before this year’s election day.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by David Clayton

March 23, 2016 at 6:51 am

Posted in Debunkery, Punditry

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Me, F.P., Video Synchronization, and… Rule 7.13?

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FP

Feisty, eh? Background: F.P. Santangelo is the Nationals color guy on TV, an ex-MLB player who provides a nice mix of entertaining and knowledgeable. Some people don’t like his broadcasting, but that’s always going to be true; ask baseball fans about Tim McCarver and they’ll either love him or hate him. I think F.P. does a good job, and I’ve tweeted as much.

The Nats made two errors on one play in the 1st inning of the September 7 2014 game against the Phillies, resulting in one run scoring and Marlon Byrd ending up on third base. The umps had a tough call on this play; the second error was on Anthony Rendon, who threw the ball into the Nats’ dugout trying to throw a baserunner out at home. Byrd, the hitter at the start of the play, gets two bases as of the point Rendon threw the ball. So whether he had gotten to second base at that moment was the difference between Byrd scoring or stopping at third; turned out to be the margin of victory.

The Nationals’ broadcast on MASN very quickly put together a picture-in-picture video of the play, which F.P. said was synced. I was immediately skeptical, and looking quickly at their video, I judged that the two were not actually in perfect sync, and said so. Then I went apple picking. No really!

Checking in on my phone two hours later, I found F.P.’s snarky reply. He may be right, but I’m guessing I know a little more about it than he thinks.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by David Clayton

September 7, 2014 at 11:24 am

Posted in Baseball, Debunkery

How Much Does It Matter When An Umpire Calls A Pitch Wrong?

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With two outs in the 8th inning of the Reds’ 1-0 victory against the Nationals yesterday, Reds closer Aroldis Chapman was brought in to face Adam LaRoche with runners on first and second.

The matchup was good for the Reds; the flame-throwing lefty Chapman has a FIP (fielding-independent pitching) of 0.59 — far better than any other pitcher in baseball this year, and is particularly brutal on left-handed hitters, holding them to an OPS (on-base plus slugging) of just .344 this year. LaRoche was 0-2 against Chapman in his career, and has an OPS against lefties this year of .647, vs. .894 against righties.

Chapman missed with his first two two fastballs, at 101 and 99.5 mph. With his third, he throttled back a little more and got a called strike on the outside corner. But this pitch was clearly a ball, and was indeed the worst pitch call umpire Jeff Nelson made on this day.

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by David Clayton

July 27, 2014 at 8:45 am

Posted in Debunkery

The One Place I’d Like To See On Each Continent

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I think these likely change from day to day.

North America – Antelope Canyon, Arizona

South America – Machu Pichu, Peru

Europe – St. Peter’s Basilica, Rome

Africa – Victoria Falls

Asia – The Treasury at Petra, Jordan

Australia – Great Barrier Reef

Antarctica – Nowhere. Nowhere at all.

Written by David Clayton

July 9, 2014 at 12:02 pm

Posted in Debunkery

How much does Ted Cruz save taxpayers by using his wife’s gold-plated health insurance?

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“FYI: We already have a subsidized health care system. It just subsidizes Ted Cruz’s $40k
policy more than a family trying to get out of poverty.”  — @LOLGOP

Ted Cruz has very publicly and proudly that he doesn’t take the health insurance offered to members of Congress by the United States government, with the clear implication that he doesn’t think it’s right for Congressmen to take such a lavish benefit at taxpayers’ cost. Then news came out that not only does Cruz have another option, as do many married 2-earner families, but his family rationally takes his wife’s employer-supported insurance, which is a far more expensive plan than the one Cruz would get through Congress. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by David Clayton

October 30, 2013 at 10:31 am

Posted in Debunkery