Posted in Quick Hits on December 8th, 2016 by Ed

So this is a weird post. Maybe you're familiar with all of these things already. But here are a few suggestions from one white liberal to another on how to dilute the painful whiteness of most of our internet reading experiences. I mean, I'm not going to say that opinions you enjoy reading are not valid if they come from someone who is the same as you in terms of demographics, but over the last few years I've made an effort (and due to the dominance of White Dudeness and White Feminism in the blogosphere, "effort" is an appropriate term) to make the perspectives I expose myself to a little less homogeneous. I am a white dude, I am more likely to Get other white dude humor, writing style, and perspective, and they are more likely to get mine. I don't think any of us need to apologize for that, but it's worth recognizing that we're looking into the mirror a lot when it comes to the perspectives we see online. Yeah, everyone gets their dose of Ta-Neshi Coates. Here's some other good stuff I've found that fits the product category, "Things a Gin and Tacos reader will probably like."

Yesterday I linked some Damon Young. You should read basically everything he says, including but not limited to VSB (Very Smart Brothas). I first became aware of this thanks to….

Samantha Irby, who does Bitches Gotta Eat, a great Facebook page of the same name, a best-selling book and soon a TV series on FX based on said book.

Luvvie Ajayi similarly has a best-selling book, an active FB community, and a website updated regularly with long-form stuff. The sense of humor is a little less twisted and more Normal Person compared to mine or the above Irby material, but I think it's still funny without being cornball or wandering into Wayne Brady / Dave Coulier territory.

Wain Bennett's Field Negro has one of my favorite comment sections on the internet. I've had people compare me to him in terms of willingness to go full R-rated in his writing. The assumption, though, is that if you're in for Gin and Tacos nothing over there will shock you much. People are very candid on that site.

Anyway, that's just a sample. The internet is cruel in a sense, there is always more good stuff than any one person can reasonably consume. But if you're looking to freshen up a stale set of daily reads, you could do worse than sampling a few of these.


Posted in Quick Hits on December 4th, 2016 by Ed

It's kind of ridiculous how many of the Everything is Terrible All the Time shirts you guys have ordered, but if you really want that "In on the ground floor" credibility when visiting your respective clurbs there are still a handful of the original Follow Me to the Clurb shirts and bumper stickers waiting for loving homes. Christmas is just around the corner.


Posted in Quick Hits on November 29th, 2016 by Ed

And so the Master Negotiator, the man so skilled at making deals that his name is practically synonymous with wheeling and dealing, has struck again. He's not even in the White House yet and already he managed to convince Carrier to keep a medium-sized factory in Indianapolis open. Does this guy know how to talk people into doing what he wants or what??


"Incentives." The deal involves "incentives." So like, he walked into a meeting with their people and said, "If you stay I will give you this bag of money. The money is not mine, but I have the power to give it to you. Giving it to you costs me literally nothing." Then they said "OK, we will let you give us this big bag of free money"?

Those fabled Trump negotiating skills really are a thing to behold. I don't think there's anyone else alive who could have made this deal, taking a big bag of free tax money and handing it to a major defense contractor in exchange for a lukewarm promise to keep 700 Indiana factory workers employed for a little while longer. This is more incredible than when the Dutch swindled the Indians out of Manhattan.

What. A. Deal.


Posted in Quick Hits on November 15th, 2016 by Ed

Yeah, in light of last week I think it's appropriate to turn this into a t-shirt. Same drill as The Clurb t-shirts (which necessitated a second print run, and are available again in all sizes). Canvas brand, screenprinted (no print on demand BS), no text on the reverse side this time, women's v-neck and men's/unisex crew neck available. Simple. Black. Bleak. Let everyone know how you feel. Let everyone know your favorite blog. Because that's an important thing to let people know, obviously. Canvas sizing guides for unisex and women's v-neck shirts. The quality on the Clurb shirts and the screenprinting were both great, so these won't fall apart or fade after one wash. Black hides tears, too.

Once again this is a PRE-ORDER and it will probably take two-three weeks to get them in my hands once I order them. Since I'm not a big box store, I have to do the pre-order thing to get a rough idea of how many you guys actually want. Otherwise I would be guessing and end up with way too many or not enough. The good thing is that once they're in my hands they'll be in yours in two or three days. I appreciate your understanding and patience.


Choose size and style


Posted in Quick Hits on November 12th, 2016 by Ed

The classic 3×5 stickers, which sold out a few months ago, are back in stock if you feel like you can part with $3.50. Clurb t-shirts are also being replenished – honestly I had no idea that more than about five people would want one – and will ship as soon as I receive the new order shortly.



Posted in Quick Hits on November 8th, 2016 by Ed

Regarding the pertinent issue of Trump (should he lose) refusing to concede, three points:

1. Remember that it is not necessary, legally or politically, for the losing candidate in any American election to concede. Cleveland didn't need to concede the World Series to make the Cubs the winners.

2. In the event that the outcome is not especially close, any attempt he makes to contest the results will have little effect. The Gore-Bush thing got drawn out to the wire because there was a single state at issue with a margin so thin that the odds of such a finish recurring are almost vanishingly small. Contesting the results in like fifteen states at once, especially if the popular vote is not particularly close in most or any of them, amounts to nuisance litigation and one last pathetic publicity stunt. That strategy has zero chance of succeeding.

3. In the event that the election is not a blowout but the difference is anything greater than "Florida 2000" close, I'd bet that the Republican National Committee (possibly relying on Pence, who is effectively estranged from Trump for weeks at this point) will concede the election and wash their hands of anything Trump does moving forward. One assumes they are in full damage mitigation mode right now and, at the very least, committed to ensuring that he does not tarnish the brand any more than he already has.


Posted in Quick Hits on November 2nd, 2016 by Ed

To the many people asking, "Hillary Clinton is no different than Trump. How do I vote for Bernie Sanders?" the answer is not simple because procedures vary by state. Nonetheless this short step-by-step guide will walk you through the process.

1. Don't. He conceded on June 7 and ended his campaign on July 25.


Posted in Quick Hits on September 13th, 2016 by Ed

The election is almost here, take the opportunity to show everyone that you are morally superior and refuse to condone the two-party system.



Posted in Quick Hits on September 12th, 2016 by Ed

Charles Pierce is usually On, although like all of us I've gotten the feeling that he's struggling to think of what to say at this point about this election. I know he's taken a look at this site at least a few times, and I'd like to think that my post from Saturday was his inspiration to use the term "fee fees" (although I'm sure it's just two stellar minds thinking alike) in his latest missive. But his description of the media treatment of Trump (and conservatives in general) cannot be improved upon.

There is an accomplished woman saying something everybody knows is true and there is a vulgar talking yam who apparently could set his own dick on fire and not pay much of a price for it on television. That is grading on the curve, but it's nothing new. Hell, we've been grading Republicans on a curve for decades. We graded Reagan on a curve when he burbled about trees and air pollution. We graded him on a curve during Iran Contra on the grounds that he was too dim to know what was going on around him. We graded W on a curve for the whole 2000 campaign when he didn't know Utah from Uzbekistan, but Al Gore knew too much stuff and what fun was he, anyway? We graded Republicans on a curve when they attached themselves to the remnants of American apartheid, when they played footsie with the militias out west and with the heirs to the White Citizens Councils in the South. We graded them on a curve every time they won a campaign behind Karl Rove or Lee Atwater or the late Terry Dolan back in the 1970s. We talked about how they were "reaching out" to disillusioned white voters who'd suffered in the changing economy, as though African-American workers didn't get slugged harder than anyone else by deindustrialization. We pretended not to notice how racial animus was the accelerant for the fire of discontent in the "Reagan Democrats." That was, and is, grading on a moral curve.

I'd be grumpy that I was working on something along these lines and now it's irrelevant, but the "grading curve" is so much better a metaphor than anything I was coming up with that I can't even be mad. Sometimes you just take a bow.


Posted in Quick Hits on September 8th, 2016 by Ed

So I'm trying hard to collect more data on this, but I noticed an odd anomaly on the the "Poll of Polls" aggregator on (now part of Huffington Post). There are three blue dots (representing Clinton support in the respective polls) that are equal (at 37%) and clear outliers, showing much lower Clinton support than any other polls.

All three are conducted by the same agency, Rasmussen Reports. Rasmussen is a well-known partisan hack outfit that makes its money by generating results that please potential conservative donors. It tells clients what they want to hear, which in this case would be that the presidential race is either close or even favorable for Trump. The rightward lean of RR has been well documented, most publicly by Nate Silver after the 2010 midterm election. The green arrows identify the three Rasmussen results that stand out, as you can verify for yourself on Pollster's interactive site.


Two questions: What does the "poll of polls" look like without Rasmussen's data? Since they contribute only a few polls to a very large pool of data for a site like Pollster, I wouldn't expect a dramatic change. Their inclusion is, however small, exaggerating the competitiveness of the race in national polling. Second, why is data so clearly suspect not being looked at more closely, or perhaps withheld until its notable skew toward Trump relative to other polling can be explained? I tend to be suspicious of media efforts to depict the race as competitive, so although the explanation is probably innocent ("We need to be Fair and Balanced! Which means including intentionally skewed data as long as it's skewed to the right!") part of me feels like we're beginning a repeat of 2012 when all the networks insisted up until the last possible minute that Romney was OMGSOCLOSE to winning in order to prevent viewers from getting bored and wandering away.