Category Archives: Idiocy

Atlas Shrugged, the Peewee Vermin edition


From Reuters:

Shkreli laughs off questions from lawmakers, calls them ‘imbeciles’

Former drug executive Martin Shkreli laughed off questions about drug prices and tweeted that lawmakers were imbeciles on Thursday, when he appeared at a U.S. congressional hearing against his will.

And from the Guardian:

Drug company boss Martin Shkreli refuses to testify to Congress

  • Shkreli invokes fifth amendment right not to answer questions about HIV drug
  • So-called ‘most hated man in America’ hiked price of Daraprim 5,000%

And the Washington Post:

‘Pharma bro’ Shkreli stays silent before Congress, calls lawmakers ‘imbeciles’ in tweet

Shkreli, the former chief executive of Turing Pharmaceuticals, who gained notoriety for jacking up a little-known drug’s price, was excused from a House hearing on drug prices after he refused to answer any questions — other than how to pronounce his name correctly, or to confirm that, yes, he was listening.

And a screencap of the London Daily Mail homepage teaser for this story:

BLOG Shrek

And the Los Angeles Times:

Smirking pharma CEO Martin Shkreli leaves lawmakers infuriated after hourlong showing

Shkreli appeared to smirk throughout his hourlong appearance, and moments after it ended, insulting tweets began to appear under his official Twitter account calling the lawmakers “imbeciles.”

“Appeared to smirk”?

We’ll let you, dear reader, be the judge. For your assistance, via vlogger TacoBurritoLegend:

Martin Shkreli Pharma Bro Smirking Compilation

Program note:

Martin Shkreli smirked this much during his 10 minute hearing with Congress. Will he be held in contempt?

Headline of the day: And a melodic bonus too


From the Guardian:

Super Bowl protests flare up over plight of San Francisco’s homeless residents

Protest against efforts to oust homeless people from ‘Super Bowl City’ highlights tensions days before city hosts one of the largest sporting events in the world

And that melodic bonus, via Subtitleman:

San Francisco – Scott McKenzie

Program notes:

“San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” is a song, written by John Phillips of The Mamas & the Papas, and sung by Scott McKenzie. It was written and released in June 1967 to promote the Monterey Pop Festival.

McKenzie’s song became an instant hit. The lyrics tell the listeners, “If you’re going to San Francisco, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair”. Due to the difference between the lyrics and the actual title, the title is often quoted as “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Some Flowers in Your Hair)”. “San Francisco” reached number four on the Billboard Hot 100 in the United States, and was number one in the United Kingdom and most of Europe. The single is purported to have sold over 5 million copies worldwide. The song is credited with bringing thousands of young people to San Francisco, California during the late 1960s.

The Intercept stunned by a fabrication scandal


The Intercept, best known as the platform for Glenn Greenwald and platform for many of the Edward Snowden leaks has been hit by a major and all-too-familiar journalism scandal these days: a fabricating journalist.

From Intercept editor-in-chief Betsy Reed:

The Intercept recently discovered a pattern of deception in the actions of a staff member. The employee, Juan Thompson, was a staff reporter from November 2014 until last month. Thompson fabricated several quotes in his stories and created fake email accounts that he used to impersonate people, one of which was a Gmail account in my name.

An investigation into Thompson’s reporting turned up three instances in which quotes were attributed to people who said they had not been interviewed. In other instances, quotes were attributed to individuals we could not reach, who could not remember speaking with him, or whose identities could not be confirmed. In his reporting Thompson also used quotes that we cannot verify from unnamed people whom he claimed to have encountered at public events. Thompson went to great lengths to deceive his editors, creating an email account to impersonate a source and lying about his reporting methods.

We have published corrections and editor’s notes to the affected pieces, and we will publish further corrections if we identify additional problems. We are retracting one story in its entirety. We have decided not to remove the posts but have labeled them “Retracted” or “Corrected,” based on our findings. We have added notes to stories with unconfirmed quotes.

More from the Gawker:

Thompson was hired by The Intercept’s founding editor-in-chief, John Cook, in November 2014. Reed replaced Cook, a former editor of Gawker.com and the current executive editor of Gawker Media, in December 2014. Prior to The Intercept, Thompson had reported in Chicago for DNAInfo and the local NPR affiliate, WBEZ.

Based on his Twitter account, Thompson appears to be invested in the outcomes of other journalism controversies. In several tweets from last year, for example, he argued that former BuzzFeed editor Benny Johnson, who was fired for committing widespread plagiarism in the summer of 2014, would not have been been able to bounce back so quickly (to editor positions at National Review and the Independent Journal Review) if he were not white.

Headline of the day: Insanity in Kansas


From the Guardian:

US veteran’s children taken away over his use of medical marijuana

Tensions running high between courts, family attorneys and child protective services, who are unsure where lines are drawn in a world of legalized cannabis

Headline of the day: Maybe time for Twig to leaf?


The front page Washington Post homepage teaser for a story that makes us wonder why does this man still holds onto his job, given that he demonstrably can’t do it?:

BLOG Twig

Headline of the day III: Pot calls kettle black


Ironies abound.

From the Guardian:

Fox News accuses Donald Trump of ‘terrorizing’ network after debate exit

Channel, which says Trump campaign threatened ‘rough days’ for Megyn Kelly if she hosted event, rejected ‘capitulating to politicians’ ultimatums’

Headline of the day II: Oh now that’s reassuring


From the Associated Press:

Air Force withheld nuclear mishap from Pentagon review team

In the spring of 2014, as a team of experts was examining what ailed the U.S. nuclear force, the Air Force withheld from them the fact that it was simultaneously investigating damage to a nuclear-armed missile in its launch silo caused by three airmen.