#Boycott NRA takes off

United and Delta cut ties with the NRA.

…in abandoning the NRA, the airlines followed car rental giants Avis, Hertz and Enterprise, the Best Western hotel chain, the global insurance company MetLife, and more than a dozen other corporations that have severed affiliations with the gun group in the last two days.

Good. Couldn’t happen to a more worthy bunch of extremists at the top of the organization. We’ve repeatedly been told that most NRA members would go along with sensible curbs on guns, including fixing the gun show loophole, raising minimum ages, and other things meant to reduce the number of unstable people with guns. Their executives, however, have been spouting bizarre claims about their opponents for years. Just yesterday at the annual CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) meeting

[CEO] LaPierre told them “you should be anxious and you should be frightened” about the potential of another Democratic takeover of the House, Senate and White House.

“If they seize power … our American freedoms could be lost and our country will be changed forever,” he said. “The first to go will be the Second Amendment.”

LaPierre spent a significant portion of his remarks warning against the expansion of socialist political ideas, despite the fact that Republicans control both chambers in Congress and the White House…

To his audience this is red meat. Once upon a time CPAC was on the fringes of the Republican Party; now it is the Republican Party, as was obvious when the sitting President gave a live speech to the assembled crowd.

We can hope that the average NRA member enjoys his discounts from the above companies and rises up to say to his organization’s leaders “Enough!” I ain’t bettin’ on it, though.

Trump’s corruption

Forbes magazine has done a deep dive into the President’s real estate holdings and discovered that he’s getting paid approximately 175 million bucks a year in rent from tenants like the government of China and major banks like UBS, Barclays, J P Morgan and Bank of America. Coincidentally (or was it?)

In December, Trump tenants UBS, Barclays and JPMorgan, plus Trump lender Deutsche Bank, got waiver extensions from the Department of Labor that allow them to avoid part of their punishment for illegally manipulating interest rates and foreign exchange rates.

There’s more, of course. Read the article and decide for yourself whether Walgreens’ heavy lobbying of the White House facilitated its merger with Rite-Aid this year, a merger the Obama Administration and its monopoly regulators had declined to approve. Maybe it was on the up-and-up; then again, Walgreens’ brand Duane Reade pays Trump $3.2M per year in rent at his building at 40 Wall Street in NYC. Do you think the regulators knew that?

The man is a grifter and a lawbreaker.

Anyone recognize Karla Bonoff?

She wrote three songs which appeared on Linda Ronstadt’s Hasten Down the Wind album way back in 1976, but she’s also a singer in her own right. She, Kenny Edwards, Andrew Gold and Wendy Waldman formed Bryndle and released several albums over its life. All four were (Gold and Edwards died several years ago) and are solo artists of note.

Here’s Bonoff singing one of her more famous songs.

If you like that you should hunt up her other albums.

Science: what good is it?

Trump is considering privatizing the International Space Station.

You know, that’ll probably play well in Bumf*** where the Trump voters can reliably be found, according to the anthropologists at the New York Times and Washington Post. No future astronauts or engineers or people like that live out in rural America, I’m sure.

When can we get rid of this idiot?

Super Bowl Lii 52 pick-up LII

Here’s a half-hour presentation about the game from the NFL Network.

Sports Illustrated’s Monday Morning Quarterback column team makes its picks. They go 11-4 for the Patriots.

I have to agree. I don’t care how old Brady is (40) and how many times Belichick has taken teams to this game (10). Neither of them is too jaded to want to win, and they have the horses to do it. The Eagles’ Nick Foles is a good journeyman QB and Doug Pederson is a good coach, but I don’t see them getting to the top of the mountain this year.