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That damn crossbow

This is another Game of Thrones post. If you’re not a fan, you don’t have to read it. I’m going to try to post later on the Michael Flynn unredactions and the Russian successful hacking of election servers in two Florida counties in 2016.

If you are like me, you’re probably wondering what Bronn was up to this season. We first saw the sellsword in episode one, frolicking with three harlots (one of which was going to die of pox in a year according to the Queen’s hand). He accepted a commission and a crossbow from Cersei to kill Tyrion and Jaime. Of course, Bronn decided to use it as leverage when he finally caught up to the Lannister brothers in Winterfell. Highgarden for their lives. Deal.

Where that deal stands now is anybody’s guess but one thing is for damn sure. Bronn is in possession of “Checkov’s Gun”. The blog, Now Novel, describes Checkov’s Gun like this:

Chekhov’s Gun‘ is a concept that describes how every element of a story should contribute to the whole. It comes from Anton Chekhov’s famous book writing advice: ‘If in the first act you have hung a pistol on the wall, then in the following one it should be fired.

Technically, the “gun” was fired into a post just beside Jaime Lannister’s head as a warning shot but that’s not why I think the writers introduced it.

It’s going to get used. The question is, who is going to use it and who or what is the intended target.

Let’s recap, shall we? I’m going to spoil episode 5 for viewers so if you haven’t seen it, now is the time to go check your Twitter account.

Ok. Here goes.

In the previews for the finale, King’s Landing is a smoking ruin. Danaerys is about to seize the Iron Throne after having razed the city and nearly everyone in it after it had surrendered. Let’s not go into whether Danaerys was ruined by bad writing. I think GoT Academy had the right idea in that Danaerys is the alternate path for Galadriel had she decided to accept the Ring from Frodo.

But I digress.

So we see Dany from the back, facing her army, while the sky is grey and still thick with smoke. It’s an ominous vision. It looks like something out of the Third Reich as shot by Leni Riefenstahl. And why not? Danaerys Ghenghis Targaryen has done something her psychotic father only dreamed about.

The other characters have to be thoroughly horrified. We know that Arya is. Jon is finally coming to terms with his missteps and the dishonor his own men have brought him. Tyrion wanders the ruins an orphan, the last of his name. His family is gone.

Where is Sansa? On her way with all of the forces that Varys could muster before he was executed. Bran may be with her. Brienne will definitely come. We can expect to see the Vale, Riverrun, maybe Dorne, Highgarden…

Wait. Highgarden? Didn’t Tyrion give Highgarden to Bronn? Hard to say how that will work out considering Dany is going to want to toast Tyrion. But ok, let’s say Sansa has decided to make good on Tyrion’s promise on Jon’s behalf. After all, Jon is the true king.

So, Bronn comes to King’s Landing with Sansa, carrying a crossbow.

By now, we all know that Dany and her dragon can’t be allowed to continue. Dany is the worst of war criminals. (Note to Sansa: draft new articles of war at Harrenhal and call it the Harrenhal Convention. Just a suggestion.)

Jon knows that Sansa, Arya, Bran and Tyrion are all in danger, especially if they don’t bend the knee. But Dany has likely no idea who Bronn is.

Bronn, the guy with Checkov’s Gun.

We also know that one sure way to take out a dragon is to shoot it in the brain through the eye.

Now that doesn’t mean that Bronn will do it. Arya is also a crack shot. But she’s already got her “Slay the Monster” and “Master a Valerian Steel Dagger” merit badges on her Winterfell Council Girl Scout sash. Let someone else have the glory. So, my prediction is that Bronn will take out the dragon. With that, he will be entitled to whatever empty castle and lands he wants.

The rest is up in the air. I’ve heard that Bran will become king once Jon abdicates. But if anything, Bran might be as responsible for the carnage as Dany because he has greensight and that was amplified when he became the Bloodraven. And Bloodraven’s goal was to do whatever was good for the realm, even if that meant carnage along the way. Anyway, Bran doesn’t appear to have the temperament to be king. I don’t think he wants it. It doesn’t play to his strengths. (Can you tell I don’t like the rumors I’m hearing about the ending?)

If I were to write this ending, Sansa would be queen temporarily. Bran would be her new Varys the Spider and bring her intelligence from around the seven kingdoms. Tyrion would go off to a spa In Dorne for rest and art therapy, then return to take up his role as Sansa’s consort. Brienne would become Sansa’s Hand of the Queen. Arya would ride off to Storm’s End. Jon would don the black and find a nice wildling girl in the North.

The unsullied would return to Essos. The Dothraki would hold a funeral for Dany where they would burn her body. Hold on, Dany doesn’t burn. So after many futile attempts, the Dothraki stop partying and get on the boats with the Unsullied to go home.

Nobody’s completely happy. But hey, this is George RR Martin. We’ll be lucky if no one is maimed or dismembered before the final credits.

45 Responses

  1. Off topic but wanted to put this out for those who believe Biden is our best choice for president:


    Joe Biden has called for social security cuts 3 times in the last 12 years. Is he really on the side of the middle class or is this just media spin? One has to ask why would Joe want to cut social security?

    • Apparently President Obama was looking for a “Grand Bargain,” part of which would cut Social Security and Medicare benefits, in exchange for deficit reduction. That Grand Bargain kept being brought up, but fortunately nothing came of it. Biden is seen by many Obama devotees as offering Obama’s third term. Pelosi would never do this, but Biden is no liberal, nor was Obama, really. But voters, even Democratic ones, seem to care more about image and their own projections, than actual policies. Hillary was to the left of Obama and Biden, but kept getting attacked for being a “corporatist.”

      • The Pure Left pilloried Hillary largely for Bill’s “triangulations”, ignoring the grim fact that Reaganized, Gingrichized, Limbaughed White Amurka would have made Bill a one-term president, or never let him be Prez at all, if he had not “triangulated”.

        • Exactly. People also forget that Clinton vetoed the Welfare Bill three times before he could wrest some humane conditions from Gingrich and his ghoulish gang.

  2. Works for me, RD, especially if Drogon could barbecue the writers before he died. Jon would also be reunited with Ghost in the North in your outcome. Can Jon procreate? He is the last Targaryen. Better for Westeros if he cannot. Also would be interesting if Brienne has a Jaime bun in the oven…he had potent swimmers.

    Anxiously awaiting the Flynn post.

    Kathleen, Biden is already dead to me. Chances are he will not make it through the primary, again.

  3. Cats,

    From your lips to God’s ears about biden! Too many believe the media hype about him, which scares me.

    I can hardly wait for the unredacted version of Flynn’s case being made public!

  4. Right there with you, Kathleen, on both points. I swear the media is the enemy of the people but not in the sense that trump means. They had their part in giving us trump after all. They don’t really have a side, just their own self interest and ego stroking, just like trump. They love the sound and sway of their own voices and the money they make from their manipulation and interpretations of the facts. Every time they heap praise on Biden or Obama or one of the other preening boys, I seethe. It’s even worse when they use Hillary, or another woman, for “contrast.” They revel in telling other people what to think. Even the good ones like Nicolle Wallace and Rachel Maddow get on my nerves from time to time when their biases seep through. The media should be neutral, impartial, tellers of the truth, purveyors of the facts, more journalists than entertainers. The comedians and the satirists are far better at getting to the truth and revealing hypocrisy and they usually don’t care who they skewer while they do it, nor should they.

    • Samantha Bee, Trevor Noah,Stephen Colbert and Seth Meyers are helping me get through. I loved Michelle Wolf’s show on Netflix. Randy Rainbow’s videos act as a talismans for me.

      Yakov Smirnoff (remember him?) was a product of an incredibly repressive USSR regime. Those who are well versed in satire say that the Berlin Wall/Cold War period in Russia produced some of the most brilliant satire of the time.

      I’m afraid we are on the same path.

      • HerStory, do you remember George Carlin? He could slice and dice through the bull shit and still make you laugh out loud.

    • Cats,

      We are on the same page re what the media has been doing in every election cycle by trying to push people into supporting a certain candidate over the others. Since Hillary opened the door and more women than ever are running for president, we are really getting a taste of just how pervasive and deep in our culture misogyny still is, not to mention the primarily male run media’s main priority is the bottom line and not the truth.

      Men hold the lion’s share of power on every level in our country and, as I’ve said before, they’ve shown that they would rather destroy the village than have a woman in charge of it. They’re doing a great job in destroying our country and all because they want to maintain that power and control they think they are entitled to. A level playing field for women and minorities obviously scares the white patriarchy to death. Wonder why.

      • Perhaps the most disgusting thing about the Obama and HRC candidacies is how they have revealed just how deep r@c!$m and $ex!$m both run among white liberals and leftists and male liberals and leftists, respectively. 😡

  5. Tried to find a date on this, my best guess is late 90s. His observations are still valid. Warning, lots of F Bombs.

    • Thank you for this, Cats. I remember him from his hippy, dippy weatherman days, to the “seven words” album, to the biting satire he performed, such as this. It was wonderful to watch him again, his work is timeless. Although, this bit didn’t contain one of my favorite quotes, where he says, in re: pro life crowd, “ They oppose abortion, but are for the death penalty. I guess, for them, it’s all in the timing!”

      • HerStory, please post a clip of that if you can find it or any other video that reminds us that the truth can be heard if we want to listen.

    • Cats:
      THANK YOU!
      It just made my day.

      George Carlin was a jewel of sanity by pointing out the obvious insanity of all.

  6. Cats,

    I needed to laugh. Thanks for finding George to break through the bullshit…Wish he were still here to give us his opinion about trump. He would drive trump even crazier than he already is.

    • Mind meld KW, i thought the exact same thing! Can you imagine George roasting trump? So much fodder, trump would be tweeting nonstop.

      Glad you are back jjmtacoma.

  7. Hi everyone! I can’t find my old password, so I’ve been lurking around by I used to be jjmtacoma.

  8. For RD, but the rest of you are welcome to look at it. :mrgreen:

  9. Can’t convince me that our elections aren’t rigged. This Harris tweet and comment was posted by Quixote at Widdershins:

    Kamala Harris:

    “One of my Republican colleagues admitted this week that Leader McConnell is blocking all legislation aimed at securing elections.
    Foreign adversaries are already gearing up to target our next elections. This is an absurd level of irresponsibility – the time to get ready is now.”

    Irresponsibility is the wrong word. Aiding and abetting an attack on the country is called something else.

    Plus it tells you the voters to whom Pelosi wants to pass the buck may have their hands tied by 2020. Hell, we may be hog-tied.

    • Would that word have 7 letters and start with “T”? 😡

      • IBW, Art 3 defines the T word thus:

        Section 3. Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court. The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason….

        Aside from the “war” component which I assume must come with a declaration of war to identify the “Enemy,” we can’t count on Congress for much, particularly the Senate. This country is FUBAR.

        I am still trying to understand how the House can proceed with hearings when the parties we want to hear from won’t or can’t comply with a subpoena. Who exactly is going to give us the “show” the general public wants to see to be convinced that precious has done anything wrong? Will we have oral readings of excerpts from the Mueller report by our most popular celebrities since only a very small percentage of the population will actually wade through the report on their own?

  10. Cats,

    I feel your pain regarding the dangers lurking around our elections! I’ve been trying for years to persuade those in power to listen but what we are dealing with is far worse than the American people can imagine. I am convinced that the voting machines were put into place with security holes as big as Texas for the sole purpose of controlling who gets into power and who doesn’t.

    The fact that neither Congress nor the media took the findings of we uncovered in “Hacking Democracy” seriously is proof enough for me that we are dealing with treason at the highest levels of our government. Anyone who dares call them on the facts of what’s going on in our elecions process is called a nut and a conspiracy theorist.

    I pray that the American people love their country enough to fight for it and to not allow Russian to steal the election again for trump. Until we change the way our votes are counted, the American people must turn out and vote in droves as if our lives depended on it. Indeed, they do.

  11. KW, as I said, I have no doubt our elections, and primaries, can and are manipulated for a reason, to benefit someone, some group, some objective. What is bothering me is that it hasn’t been one party presidencies for decades. Would that be too obvious? Was that not necessary to achieve an objective? Makes me wonder if strings are being pulled on many different levels. As you mentioned, how did these particular machines get into our electoral system, who was behind really behind it? Who knows how to fiddle with them without getting caught? I know I watch too much TV but the word “cabal” comes into mind and it isn’t made up of people like you and me! Certainly not a concept considered by our FFs. Looks like I am going to need a bigger roll of tin foil….

  12. Cats,

    I hear ya.

    How did all this get started? Congress introduced these voting machines with proprietary software way back in the 80’s and did so without any public debate with the American people about the pros and cons. Of course, we are expected to pay for them! An important fact is when I went to Berlin to discuss the state of our voting systems in America, I was told by German computer security experts that any voting system can be hacked. None are safe from being compromised.

    Think about it…Congress is controlled by corporations/lobbyists to ensure that the best interests of the powerful corporations are always a priority, not the peoples. The extremely wealthy who stay in the shadows are the ones pulling the strings behind the scenes in this game.

    Then you have to add the media to the mix. In 1983, 50 corporations controlled most of the American media, including magazines, books, music, news feeds, newspapers, movies, radio and television. By 1992 that number had dropped by half. By 2000, six corporations had ownership of most media, and today five dominate the industry: Time Warner, Disney, Murdoch’s News Corporation, Bertelsmann of Germany and Viacom. With markets branching rapidly into international territories, these few companies are increasingly responsible for deciding what information is shared around the world. What we should be most concerned about is the narrowing of choices, because that removes from voters the full spectrum of views and information with which to choose its government—a dangerous trend that threatens democracy itself. Add the machines into the mix and the power elite are in total control, not the people.

    Unless the American people wake up and realize that these voting systems are the key to the undermining of democracy, the voice of hte people is silenced. Without the vote, we cannot make any changes and the power elite know it. Our votes are counted inside a software which proprietary and is protected by intellectual property laws and is not made available for inspection by the manufacturers to election officials, making the counting of votes totally non-transparent. Do not be fooled by the poll tapes spewed out by the machine as a way to confirm accuracy, they can be altered too – as shown in “Hacking Democracy”.

    I have heard reports that Americans all over the country are organizing and preparing for the 2020 election. I joined the “SuperMajority” organization founded by Cecile Richards, Alicia Gomez and Ai-Jen Poo. The plan for Supermajority is to partner their organizations, among others, to teach 2 million women how to be political activists, i.e., be STRONGER TOGETHER. Those interested in getting involved and stopping this insanity should check it out: supermajority.com.

    • The Malefactors of Great Wealth think that if they block off all legal means of change, they and their descendants will rule forever.

      I seem to recall the European aristocrats thought the same thing, as did the Communists.

      But then, as a conservative intellectual (IIRC) said, the only thing we learn from history is that we do not learn.

      Power/wealth/privilege is a helluva drug, and it blocks the faculty of reason as much or more than any chemical drug.

  13. Sorry; I don’t have a larger image.

  14. Ivory Bill,

    You are so right about “power/wealth/privilege being a helluva drug. It has infected our country and we are dealing with the ugly consequences of this drug.

    There are more of us than there are of them is the one thing we have going for us. Our choices is to sit by and let them take over completely or fight back. Elizabeth Warren is right. This is our fight. I say fight back. Together we can win.

  15. Labor’s turn to Nixon — and to Wallace before him — pre-dates the decline in unionism and the introduction of right to work laws.

    The white working class didn’t adopt a social-conservative, revanchist stance as a salve to their declining workplace organizing opportunities — they did it precisely because the economic strength of their then-strong wages allowed them to branch into extracurricular interests outside of work.

    One major reason, maybe THE major reason, the Democratic Establishment got cozier with the monied Establishment is that the Dems were desperate for campaign money to try either to win back the non-elite white bigots, or to find other voters to replace the white bigots.

    In other words, the white working class deserted the Democratic Party first.

    So the mean dumb shits did it to themselves. Darwin Award time. 😡

    I still support democracy, but now only for the same reason that Churchill did: “Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others which have been tried.”

    • The “Southern Strategy” of Nixon, was based on the inherent racism of many Southerners, plus a focus on simplistic social issues. Reagan to not really play to racism, but electorally profited from it, and of course cemented the Republican Voting Party (as differentiated from the Republican Corporate Ruling Party) as the party of pseudo religious virtuousness. No matter the economic problems, or how much was taken away from the middle class and given to the wealthy, these voters could be counted upon to respond to attacks on hippies, free love, protesters, flag-burners, atheists, and “Socialists,” GHW Bush ran an entire campaign on protecting the flag from flag-burning, the ACLU, and paroling Black people. That was more blatant than most campaigns, but it continues, as some shadowy entity known as “the libs,” is the enemy whose tears and defeat are more important than anything else in their lives. The grimly amusing thing is that while the Republican power elite has utter contempt for the middle class and poor, the candidates keep convincing them that they are standing up for the hardworking Americans, as against some liberal elites composed of Jewish people and Blacks and gays and obstreperous women. And their target voters are largely so ignorant, that they are seduced by it every eight years at the least.

      • And then, to borrow a phrase from Driftglass, Sith Tsar Putin and his gremlins hacked the Wingnut Launch Codes, and directed Putin’s Puppet in what to say and do. Basically, all Benedict Donald did was to swap the dog-whistle for a bull-horn–where the other Rethuglicans offered the Republican Voting Partisans the same old methadone maintenance bigotry, Benedict Donald gave them pure China White bigotry, straight up the mainline. That, and a massive stealth-Russian propaganda blitz on the toxic social media, and a little judicious Russian interference with the unaccountable voting computers here and there, and Putin scored the greatest victory against the USA since Pearl Harbor.

        Now the Republican Voting Party dances to the tune of Putin’s Puppet, who in turn dances to Putin’s tune. (Putin is smart enough to allow Benedict Donald–or direct him–to say and do occasional things that seem hostile to Russia, in order to throw off suspicion.) The Republican Corporate Formerly Ruling Party has lost control of their Orc-horde, and just hangs on to keep their precious tax cuts coming.

        The people you describe are basically my tribe. Ascended Madoka only knows how they produced me. I feel like a Marvel Comics mutant who has decided that Magneto is right about the normals. 😡

        The Waco Kid was right about them.

        • Nice one, Vladimir.

          You won the digital Pearl Harbor.

          But do you remember, Vlad, what happened to that nation which won the original, analog Pearl Harbor?


          Now they make cars, electronics, and cute schoolgirl cartoons for us.

          On the other hand, I doubt you lot will prove useful for anything other than raw materials.

        • There are obviously good Arkansians, you and Bill Clinton being two. Clinton won Arkansas twice, and Gore would have, if he and Brazile had not stupidly tried to ostracize him from the campaign trail. What has happened there since, is depressing. I don’t know how it gets fixed. But I had always looked upon Arkansas as more attuned to Democrats than Texas or Oklahoma or Louisiana, until the last fifteen years or so.

  16. Another excellent find by Quixote at Widdershins, must read?


    • Cats, I am thunderstruck after reading this. Thank you for providing. I am saving for this reading and rereading and sending to like minded friends and family and to a few non likeminded, as well.


  17. Duh, that question mark was supposed to be a period. Concluding para from the article:

    “This is not a moment to mince words. This is a moment for moral clarity. Women’s personhood is not conditional. Women’s sexuality is not shameful. The only shameful thing, the only thing that no citizen who believes even fractionally in freedom should tolerate, is a world in which women are treated like things.”

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