December 30, 2018

At the Noble Rat Café...

Version 3

... have some coffee-based conviviality.

90 comments:

Yancey Ward said...

We need a Nobel Rat.

RK said...

Many federal employees are currently furloughed. I'm sure it's big news in DC, but here in Wisconsin, no one is talking about it. Except me, just now. But I don't care either.

Jupiter said...

I am reading a biography of Walter Bedell Smith, Eisenhower's Chief of Staff. It's a view of WWII one doesn't usually get, in which the battles occur quietly, in the distance, intruding only when some useful person is unaccountably blasted out of the sky, or sunk in the ocean. Mostly it's about the very hard work of organizing all this destruction. I was struck by an incident during the planning of Overlord, in which George Patton gave a private address to a group in Britain. His remarks were somehow relayed to Washington, where they apparently offended someone. A critical editorial was published, in the Washington Post, and as a result, the promotions Ike had been lobbying for for many of his staff were not confirmed.

The MSM have always been way too powerful in this country, and they have always abused that power.

chillblaine said...

My work of fiction is nearing completion. I am missing a huge piece, but I can re-write that. I'm thinking of doing in this format, a serial format. "The Four of Us," by me.

mockturtle said...

Althouse really needs to market her rats. I think the apron idea is the best but even tee shirts would sell. Through Amazon, of course.

Seeing Red said...

We need a Nobel Rat.

Arafat won it.

mockturtle said...

Jupiter at 10:00: Having read quite a few bios of Patton and Eisenhower, as well as Monty and Rommel, I concluded years ago that the 'press' has done infinitely more harm than good in wartime. Under the guise of 'truth' [the first casualty of war, as they say], they have been self-serving pot-stirrers.

wildswan said...

T shirt with Noble rat picture and a slogan on the back:

Support/Oppose Cruel Neutrality

Gahrie said...

I have had perhaps two cups of coffee my entire life..and I didn't finish either. I have also never owned a cell phone. I often feel like a stranger in my own country.

traditionalguy said...

Seventy years ago Rat lines brought Europe ‘s finest to many places where they built their rat nests. But no one likes the exposed rats at all. Their days are numbered.

JML said...

Me and my wife are Federal employees. I’m furloughed, she isn’t. I started leave the day of the shutdown and won’t return until the 7th. Maybe there will be deal by then, maybe not. We are in a place where we can handle the loss of income, but many of my employees are going to suffer. I blame the feckless leaders in the house and Senate and the Republicans who squandered their majority when they had the chance to act. We are in California now - we head back home today. Gas here is $3.50 a gallon. It is $1.85 back home in NM. California is bright and shiny (we are in Oceanside today, actuall, Camp Pendleton in a cottage on the beach) and life is pretty good. But so much traffic and people and the cost of living. Wow! And of course, we aren’t in the impoverished areas. How can people cope? Every where we go there are signs of social engineer. Literally: signs in parking garages warning us of emissions, recycle, bring your own shopping bag or pay, LGBTGqrst is a right and welcome here, etc. They still have lots of green grass. Where does the water come from? It just seems to be a place that takes from all to keep the shine. I wonder how long it can sustain this lifestyle, and how fast is the internal rot spreading? Gov Brown just signed a law stating 60% of all energy must come from renewable sources by 2030. How? No matter. I’m sure he feels good about himself.

reader said...

JML are you staying at Roberts Cottages? It was the first place our family ever went on vacation. I will always remember those pink cottages.

Also, how about a rat sweatshirt with the slogan, "Cruel Neutrality - a conscious choice made daily".

madAsHell said...

Haven't we seen this rat before??

HT said...

California will find a way, they usually do as evidenced by the rest of the country eventually adopting many trends and innovations that were started there. This one is long overdue.

RTR!

JML said...

I’m in the Del Mar Cotteges. Nice place, esp by Corps standards.

rhhardin said...

Rifle gunfire is up today, probably practicing for new years. Shots from three different directions.

Ingachuck'stoothlessARM said...

and a 'Noble Rot' for you oenophiles. Raisin a glass!

mockturtle said...

I'm currently reading about the Black Death in Tuchman's A Distant Mirror. Rats are not always our friends.

Bill, Republic of Texas said...

I have zero sympathy for federal workers on furlough. They know they will eventually get paid for sitting on the assess over the holiday period. Government workers get paid more than regular workers with gold-plated benefits.


Normal people know they have to save money in case they go on strike or their employer has to shutdown for a few weeks. They will never get backpay.

Jim said...

Yes. 2019 is the year of the Althouse Rat Tee shirt and coffee mug."Cruel Neutrality - a conscious choice made daily". a great choice for the first printing. The decals for cars would also be a great hit.

cronus titan said...

Nobody likes a snitch.

Strange how the media never demanded noble rats during the Obama years. In fact, they were shunned by polite society.

cronus titan said...

@JML:

THe only way to achieve that is nuclear energy. CA will never allow that.

We amuse ourselves when the environmentalists in our deep blue neighborhood go door to door asking for renewable energy support. We ask if they support nuclear energy since that is the only renewable energy source that can meet needs. They usually stumble and say something about Three Mile Island or the China Syndrome. We respond they are not serious and wish them a good day. Very entertaining.

David Begley said...

The Althouse Rat Empire will launch in 2019. The Invisible Hand is working already.

With the huge net, after-tax income, Althouse and Meade will come to Omaha and buy me dinner at M’s Pub. Check out the Yelp review of it by me.

HT said...

They will do it without you.

rhhardin said...

Rats make good pets, at least the pet store kind. Happy to sit on your shoulder while you work.

Wild rats tend more towards being Nazis.

Coconuss Network said...

Cute. A canvas bag with the Rat Logo, Either no text or just simply 'Althouse Blog'. And btw, happy new year to you & Meade and family.

Hagar said...

I wonder about the lack of outrage over Trump's executive order blocking pay raises for federal employees in 2019. It has not sunk in yet?

Is he signaling that he will not be running for re-election? Or that he is?

William said...

Eisenhower's plan for winning WWII was to invade France and drive east until he reached Berlin. This turned out to be the winning strategy. The invasions of Sicily, Italy, and the south of France were wasteful of men and material. Eisenhower also had to keep divas like Montgomery, deGaulle, and Patton on the same page and in the same orchestra. He succeeded in this also. Eisenhower's one strategic blunder was choosing to become a Republican. Because of this, his substantial contribution to the Allied victory has been unjustly minimized.

rhhardin said...

The diversion of the Germans from western France contributed a lot to the landing, which was costly enough.

rhhardin said...

Also lack of oil from the Balkans, having lost control of that. No gas, no tanks.

cronus titan said...

@Hagar
"I wonder about the lack of outrage over Trump's executive order blocking pay raises for federal employees in 2019. It has not sunk in yet?"

Nobody cares.

Hagar said...

Oh, I think that the MSM cares deeply about the poor overworked and underpaid members of the AFSCME!

Char Char Binks said...

Rex Von Rattenkonig, the noblest of rats.

tcrosse said...

If you graduate from MIT you get a Brass Rat class ring.

Hagar said...

They should for that kind of jack added to the campaign coffers!

tcrosse said...

Rex Von Rattenkonig, the noblest of rats.

In the new, democratic Germany you get the Bundesrat.

Ingachuck'stoothlessARM said...

the Professor discovers a new species of rodent: Rattus Cruelneutralis

Unknown said...

Ratdundancy.

AJ Lynch said...

did any of you know that "Time" re the magazine name is an acronym?

Hagar said...

And TRUMP!!!

Chuck said...

“To be honest, it’s not a wall...”
~White House Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly

This is correct; it is not a wall. It is a personal political humiliation for Donald Trump.

Trumpit said...

We had rats as a kid. We started with a pair and they quickly reproduced to near infinity. We eventually took the whole bunch back to the pet store and dumped them there - not knowing what else to do with so many. They are more intelligent than a mouse, and very trainable. They are rather short lived. They are treated with contempt, vectors for disease, and considered pests by many. Thank you for ennobling animals on your blog. They need all the help they can get in this human dominated world. You smartly did it recently with a photo of two peccary unable to cross the U.S. - Mexico border due to a border fence - a clear concern about building a humongous wall. A picture is worth a thousand words, and you employ photos and pictures most artistically, charmingly and intelligently. Have a happy 2019.

Darrell said...

It is a personal political humiliation for Donald Trump.

No. You are confusing that with what you experience every day. And what you deserve.

Humperdink said...

"It is a personal political humiliation for Donald Trump."

Whacko-bird translation: Forget that it might be the right thing to do, as long as it humiliates Trump, I'm for it.

Karga said...

Chuck I was enjoying reading the comments, why don't you go somewhere else and then come back and admit you are not a Republican you never voted Trump and you are sick with rage for the loss in 2016. At least PPPT is enjoyable with his stupid comments.

Jupiter said...

William said...
"Eisenhower's plan for winning WWII was to invade France and drive east until he reached Berlin. This turned out to be the winning strategy. The invasions of Sicily, Italy, and the south of France were wasteful of men and material."

Well, the British and the Americans had to at least pretend to do something while the Red Army bled the Wehrmacht to death on the Eastern Front. The chances that Overlord could have been successful in '43, when the Americans wanted to try it, are nil. Even in '44, Eisenhower and Smith privately rated it 50-50.

Jack Wayne said...

Can I have beer? I don’t like coffee.

mockturtle said...

Trumpit, did you ever read the book, King Rat?

Birkel said...

Rat shirt slogan:
"Better than Nothing
is a High Standard"

Funny because it is true!

ALP said...

Ann: did you ever find your Pelikan fountain pen? I recently dusted off my Lamy Safari pens after years of ignoring them. Conversation in our house has turned to fancy fountain pens with lots of window shopping via web. A search of posts with "Pelikan" found the post that explained it was lost in your house somewhere. "Fountain pen" doesn't find anything more recent. Could have sworn there were photos of either the found pen or a new Pelikan.

Michael McNeil said...

Is he signaling that he will not be running for re-election? Or that he is?

Trump is running for reelection; but more instantly material, this (freezing federal pay for a year) shows that a) Trump is quite aware that most federal employees are Democrats, even if not (many of them) active members of the governmental “Deep State” acting in opposition to him; while b) proclaiming that he's playing hardball in the confrontation with Congress concerning the Wall. The Democrats in Congress will now have to appreciate that they going to have to buy a pay raise for federal employees as part of a settlement this year with Trump: or else they (the employees and the Democrats) won't get it and their base in government will be screaming. If they do settle it will cost them dearly to get it, perhaps even as much (gasp!) as 1/1,000th of the federal budget to satisfy Trump's demanded first installment on the Wall.

Either way, it should be worth getting out the popcorn while we watch.

Jack Wayne said...

For writing, I use a pilot G-2, size 10. If you’re gonna write, go bold.

Humperdink said...

Trumpit admitted: "We had rats as a kid. We started with a pair and they quickly reproduced to near infinity. We eventually took the whole bunch back to the pet store and dumped them there - not knowing what else to do with so many."

Trumpit, you amuse me. You, the animal lover, has chastised hunters on this blog numerous times. And yet, you raised animals and then unceremoniously dumped them off at a pet store. Presumably clandestinely. Have you no decency?

tcrosse said...

The closest we'll get to the Ignoble Rat is Ignatz the Mouse, who heaved bricks at Krazy Kat. Maybe somewhere there's an Ignoble Iguana, I guess.

Trumpit said...

"Trumpit, you amuse me. You, the animal lover, has chastised hunters on this blog numerous times. And yet, you raised animals and then unceremoniously dumped them off at a pet store. Presumably clandestinely. Have you no decency?"

I don't know what happened to the rats that we "unceremoniously dumped" when I was a child. Am I supposed to feel guilty about it? I don't doubt that your redneck family enjoys eating rats till this day. It probably tastes like chicken; you tell me.

From the web: "Rat meat really tastes like chicken. The tail, however, is not as tasty. It’s kind of crunchy — like a rat cracker.
My friend’s dad likes it with beer.
That makes two cliches: Rat tastes like chicken. Rat tail, like other exotic foods, is better with beer."

chickenlittle said...

Snitch on your neighbor is Red Chinese political policy. It creates a culture of fear. Maybe that's what Peggy Noonan wants to replace the culture of contempt currently on display in D.C.

Oh, and she never liked the cut of Trump's jib.

rehajm said...

Will my car be keyed if I display a rat sticker on it in the ‘wrong’ place?

David Begley said...

No problems so far with my rat sticker. But I live in free Omaha.

chillblaine said...

The SPLC - Their Business Model is Racism!

Humperdink said...

It would appear Trumpit is a bit sensitive about abusing his pets.

reader said...

Re Will my car be keyed if I display a rat sticker on it in the ‘wrong’ place?

Isn’t that the issue of cruel neutrality? Each side assumes you are advancing the other.

Kevin said...

Peggy Noonan: The feature that makes me such an effective hunter of Republicans is, as opposed to most Democrats, I can think like a Republican, where they can only think like a Democrat... more precisely, Progressive Democrat. Now, if one were to determine what attribute the Democrat voters share with a beast, it would be the fear and herd instinct of a sheep. But if one were to determine what attributes the Republicans share with a beast, it would be that of the rat. Maddow’s and Tapper's propaganda have said pretty much the same thing, but where our conclusions differ is I don't consider the comparison an insult. Consider, for a moment, the world a rat lives in. It's a hostile world, indeed. If a rat were to scamper through your front door right now, would you greet it with hostility?

Chris Matthews: I suppose I would.

Peggy Noonan: Has a rat ever done anything to you to create this animosity you feel towards them?

Chris Matthews: Rats spread diseases. They bite people.

Peggy Noonan: Rats were the cause of the bubonic plague, but that's some time ago. I propose to you, any disease a rat could spread, a squirrel could equally carry. Would you agree?

Chris Matthews: Oui.

Peggy Noonan: Yet I assume you don't share the same animosity with squirrels that you do with rats, do you?

Chris Matthews: No.

Peggy Noonan: But they're both rodents, are they not? And except for the tail, they even rather look alike, don't they?

Chris Matthews: It's an interesting thought, Peggy.

Peggy Noonan: Ha! However interesting as the thought may be, it makes not one bit of difference to how you feel. If a Republican were to walk in here right now, as I'm talking, would you greet it with a glass of your delicious milk?

Chris Matthews: Probably not.

Peggy Noonan: I didn't think so. You don't like them. You don't really know why you don't like them; all you know is you find them repulsive. Consequently, a Progressive Democrat conducts a search of an organization suspected of hiding Republicans. Where does the sheep look? He looks in the cubicles, he looks at the bulletin boards, he looks at the bumper stickers, he looks everywhere he would proudly display his herd affiliation. But there's so many places it would never occur to a sheep to hide. However, the reason Maddow and Tapper have brought me off my vacation in Nantucket and back onto the WSJ Op-Ed Page today is because it does occur to me. Because I'm aware what tremendous feats human beings are capable of once they abandon the media-driven fear of being called racist.

mandrewa said...

The University of Wisconsin has people doing research on molten salt reactors. See Molten Salt Reactor Thermodynamics

Dr. Scarlat talked about three things: (a) interactions between fluoride salts and graphite; (b) the discovery that they can apply the tools of electrochemistry to molten salts; and (c) the discovery of a system analogous to pH in the molten salts.

For (a) they found that small amounts CF2 and CF3 were forming at the edges of the graphite sheets plus other interactions.

(b) means they have a powerful new tool for measuring what is going on in a molten salt solution as the reactor runs. In particular, the example was given for detecting the evolution of molecular hydrogen and no doubt the same technology can be applied to measuring other species.

(c) means another powerful tool for detecting what is going on in the molten salt solution as the reactor runs. This analogue to pH turns out to be an important property of the molten salt solution. In particular they showed that small shifts in this pH analogue determine whether ionized niobium bubbles out of the solution or stays dissolved in it as an oxide.

But basically this is all good news. Some possible issues have been identified and knowing that they are going on will help to keep them minor. And two powerful techniques are being developed to quickly probe what is going on in a molten salt solution and which are going to be used to measure many things.

Chuck said...

Humperdink said...
"It is a personal political humiliation for Donald Trump."

Whacko-bird translation: Forget that it might be the right thing to do, as long as it humiliates Trump, I'm for it.


What I think is the right thing to do, is just what General Kelly described. Multi-layered border security including more personnel, more technology, and some limited combination of walls, fences, other physical barriers or no barriers at all in certain places depending on need and appropriate circumstances.

What Trump is never going to get is a Great Wall that Mexico will pay for. Trump needs to renounce that and admit that his campaign pledge was baloney.

HT said...

Someone here hinted that it is in Mexico’s interest to fund the wall. While I understand the thought, I think it’s not realistic because for years Mexico (to say nothing of the rest of CA) has considered los EEUU as the proverbial steam valve to let off pressure from within their own country. They are not psychologically, politically, emotionally, whatever-ly ready for the concept of a wall.

victoria said...

IS the Cheeto in charge a noble rat? Nothing noble about him.


Vicki from Pasadena


narciso said...

They restricted entry from central America till 2014, just like they ruthlessly suppressed their own guerillas, this economic development strategy that Lopez obrador has fashioned will have limited results.

gilbar said...

i've been thinking about a utopian wonderworld; a world where blogger let you blank out particular commenters. If people could make a commenter (like, say gilbar) invisible to them, and thus: NOT reply; think how sad and cold and empty some of our commenter's lives would become. Because i think Most people here would be glad to just tune out some of our commenters rather than being forced to see the idiocy that passes for thought.

And, then the people that are paying these trolls, would (in my utopian wonderworld,) stop paying them and they'd go back to sitting in their bar telling the bartender how they Really Did used to be a lawyer

Oso Negro said...

@Trumpit - the swarthy Third Worlders are just like your parents - trying to dump their excessive and unwanted offspring at the pet store.

narciso said...

Ironically Mexico started this wave of revolutions by letting Fidel sail out in 56, a little like the general staff did to Lenin in 17

Lydia said...

It is a personal political humiliation for Donald Trump.

Hard to see how that's not true, since Trump did try not calling it a wall when he tweeted this on December 19th:

The Democrats, are saying loud and clear that they do not want to build a Concrete Wall - but we are not building a Concrete Wall, we are building artistically designed steel slats, so that you can easily see through it....

....It will be beautiful and, at the same time, give our Country the security that our citizens deserve. It will go up fast and save us BILLIONS of dollars a month once completed!


Didn't fly though, so now he's back to calling it a wall.

narciso said...

They dont want any barrier, any law, any interference with their agenda comprende?

narciso said...

And that's true across the mediterannean:

https://legalinsurrection.com/2018/12/after-massive-investigation-ny-times-concludes-israel-did-not-intentionally-shoot-medic-rouzan-al-najjar/

Henry said...

we are building artistically designed steel slats

He should hire Richard Serra.

Rick Turley said...

Speaking of rats and war, They Shall Not Grow Old is rolling out the first weekend of February to most major markets. Do not miss it. We are going again at least one more time. Mark sure to stay for the short documentary after the movie.

BUMBLE BEE said...

ALP... Dennis Prager is very fond of his collection of fountain pens.

Kevin said...

i've been thinking about a utopian wonderworld; a world where blogger let you blank out particular commenters.

Some commenters have stated they're already able to do this using certain browsers.

I do it manually by ending any involvement in threads where Ritmo has begun commenting.

narciso said...

the victim of fake news, didn't learn a lesson:

https://donsurber.blogspot.com/2018/12/trump-bashing-general-hated-obama-too.html#comment-form

FullMoon said...


i've been thinking about a utopian wonderworld; a world where blogger let you blank out particular commenters.



Google "Blog Comment Killfile". Free. Works for me.

Drago said...

victoria: "IS the Cheeto in charge a noble rat? Nothing noble about him."

Victoria longs for the days of cigars in interns.

wildswan said...

Excerpts from the Diary of a Noble Rat

Briefed Trump on success of Obama and Kerry in Iran. Trump inattentive. Sent out for ice cream. Had two scoops asked me, if I wanted some. By some, I mean one scoop, he laughed. Wanted to scream

Briefed Trump on success of Obama in disarming North Korea. Recommended a one time gift of 1 billion dollars. Trump inattentive, sending for for Pence, asking him about "Rocketman", is he receiving any personal subsidies and why? What does Pence know except what a bunch of Korean Christians tell him? Then he told Pence to send the 7th fleet on exercises as if he was some kind of admiral. The two had ice cream. Wanted to scream.

Briefed Trump on success of transgender policy in military. Inattentive. Busy, asking his secretary to send for Mattis, and the Secretaries of the Army, Navy and Air Force and a double cheeseburger. No ice cream. Wanted to scream.

Trump's birthday. Gave him a book on economics and had to listen to him ranting about business, regulations, taxes, regulations, unions, regulations, Dodd Frank just as if he knew more than people who have studied this all their lives. Claimed he won the election. So petty. Wanted to scream.

Told Trump I felt he didn't listen to my briefings. He denied, said he listened very closely and usually acted on them. Offered to send for a double cheeseburger for me. No, I said, and, very frankly, I said, that's very wrong to be eating like that, I said. Do you realize, I said, that that would be lunch for three football players under department of education regulations? And I said ... but what's the use. As usual, he wasn't listening, too busy asking his secretary to send for someone named Betty De Vos. Always women. Wanted to scream.

paminwi said...

Bill, Republic of Texas at 11:15. I totally concur with your statement.
I have no sympathy for Federal workers. They get paid and have benefits that are the level not available to the folks in the private sector except for upper management of large companies. How do I know this? Federal employees in immediate family. Their pension is unbelievable!
Keeping the government shut down is not a big deal-our country will survive.

MadisonMan said...

ALP... Dennis Prager is very fond of his collection of fountain pens.

A man named Mr Waterman invented a tube
He was sad because it sprung a little leak
He said, "Darn it, when I hold my tube on a piece of paper,
The ink leaks out and makes a little streak"
He said, "I've gotta find a way to stop that leak
I'll start working on my leakproof tube again"
I said, "Waterman, you idiot, don't stop that leak
You just invented a fountain pen"

(Just some good advice for you all)

MadisonMan said...

btw -- the challenge to market Rat would be copyright infringement with Rat from Pearls Before Swine. That Rat's creator is a former lawyer, too.

narciso said...

Summing up the year:

https://www.miamiherald.com/living/liv-columns-blogs/dave-barry/article223204095.html

D. said...

“Trump Rat” Protest Sails Near Mar-A-Lago, Trump Supporters React

https://www.weaselzippers.us/407004-trump-rat-protest-sails-near-mar-a-lago-trump-supporters-react/

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Big Mike said...

The South Florida Sun Sentinel just published a careful, minute-by-minute account of the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High School.

It is devastating.

There was one, armed, Broward County Sheriff's Deputy on campus. He spent hiding between buildings adjacent to the one Nikolas Cruz was shooting up. Neither he nor any of the three -- three! -- school monitors who saw Nikolas Cruz enter campus with a backpack and what is described as a rifle bag thought to call a Code Red lockdown (one hid in a janitor's closet), nor did any of them confront Cruz while his gun was still in his bag.

A freshman saw Cruz loading his AR, and rushed to tell someone in authority -- a football coach -- that someone was in Building 12 loading a gun, but that coach did not call for a Code Red lockdown either.

The confused response from Broward County officers shows a collection of cowardly and poorly trained people. Not until Coral Gables police officers showed up did anyone with a gun enter the building and try to rescue wounded people.

David Hogg can go copulate with himself. It wasn't the gun that killed the children; it was cowardly, poorly trained but nevertheless cowardly, adults.

I note that just a month later there was an active shooter in Great Mills High School in St. Mary's County. Here the school resource ran towards the gunshots, engaged the shooter, and wounded him, whereupon the shooter killed himself. One wonders what would have happened had any adult in authority at Stoneman Douglas acted as decisively.

Big Mike said...

We eventually took the whole bunch back to the pet store and dumped them there - not knowing what else to do with so many.

If the pet store sold snakes they became snake food.

Meade said...

Anyone who wants one can have a rat sticker just like David Begley and a whole mischief of Althouse readers already have. Here's what you do:

Step 1: click on my cardinal avatar
Step 2: copy my email address and email me your physical mailing address
Step 3: STICKERS!