As if things weren't bad enough, today the Supreme Court agreed to hear Moore v. Harper in October, a case from purple North Carolina. The basic idea is this: The North Carolina General Assembly, which has a Republican majority, attempted to impose on the state a voting map that brazenly benefited the GOP. (We call this, of course, gerrymandering). The state's Supreme Court, which has a Dem majority, blocked it, claiming the map broke a law that protected North Carolinians' right to vote. The Supreme Court will, of course, rule in favor of the Republicans, and ultimately increase the power of state legislatures in matters concerning  maps and voting rules during federal elections. Recall what happened in Pennsylvania in 2020. SCOTUSblog:

The issue returned to the Supreme Court in 2020, when the justices turned down a request by Pennsylvania Republicans to fast-track their challenge to a Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that required state election officials to count mail-in ballots received within three days of Election Day. In an opinion that accompanied the court’s order, Justice Samuel Alito (joined by Justices Clarence Thomas and Neil Gorsuch) suggested that the state supreme court’s decision to extend the deadline for counting ballots likely violated the Constitution.  

Had Pennsylvania's Supreme Court not ruled in favor of democracy, then Trump would likely still be president. In short, the Supreme Court will legalize coups in the US. The one in 2024 will be done right.

What? You thought that was all? There is more. The Supreme Court will also hear a case concerning affirmative action, and another concerning gay rights. You know where all of this is heading. You know the score. 

Earlier today, President Biden informed the US that he now backs "ending the filibuster to codify abortion rights." But Senators Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema will have none of it. They promised to vote against removing the Senate filibuster. So, the GOP wins again, this time without even trying.

What's going on in Seattle? This morning, a black barrel with a Blue Lives Matter flag on it appeared right by Martin Luther King Jr. Way South and South Graham Street. The police were called. The fear was that the barrel contained a bomb. Was some nutter on the right trying to blow one of the most racially/culturally diverse areas in the city sky-high?

As police robots and an officer in a space suit examined the barrel, a helicopter hovered in the sky. Othello Station and Columbia City Station were closed, and traffic on MLK was redirected. In the end, the police determined the “suspicious item” posed "no danger to the public." The news helicopter returned to base without much of a story. The SPD spaceperson apparently reclaimed the flag from the planet it obviously doesn't represent.

The fire that happened in Belltown this morning? It destroyed one of the oldest buildings in Seattle, if not the Pacific Northwest. Nevertheless the nearly ancient and certainly abandoned apartment building was going to be demolished in the new future.

Our governor has ordered Washington State Patrol not to cooperate with red-state abortion investigations. The directive was activated today. How am I even writing this in the third decade of the 21st Century?

A 60-person, hourlong brawl exploded on a Carnival Cruise on June 28. It began around 2 am "near the ship’s dance club and casino on the fifth floor." Someone was accused of cheating, or something like that. Punches erupted, and more and more people collapsed into the fight. We must file the story under "J.G. Ballard."

The end of what must be the greatest work of accidental art in the age of excessive global trade is near. The barge that a climate-change-related storm blew to the seawall in Vancouver, where it got beached, will be dismantled. This gloomy work "will take 12 to 15 weeks."

Because when ever I'm down, I listen to Bill Evans.