The war against the press will be fought at the local and state level, but the war at the federal level will get the most airtime.
CNN reporter Jeremy Desmond asked Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke, under fire because of four deaths at his jail, for an interview. On Friday, Clarke replied on Twitter:
Donald Trump has labeled CNN as fake news. When Pres. Trump says CNN is ok again, then I might.
The sheriff — an elected public official — has refused to respond to a press request for an interview. This particular sheriff has a nationwide reputation as a supporter of President Donald and has been considered for a position in the Donald administration. Continue reading →
#deleteUBER: When we use them we directly support anti-competitive and unconstitutional behavior.
Uber is a douchebag company run by douchebags. I first realized this when I learned of their willingness to play really, really dirty with competitors.
Uber employees allegedly posed as customers ordered and then canceled rides from Lyft, decreasing Lyft drivers’ availability, wasting time and gas, and possibly sending real customers to Uber instead. Lyft told CNNMoney in August that 177 Uber employees—contractors armed with a burner phone and a credit card—ordered and canceled more than 5,000 rides. Continue reading →
Donald belongs in therapy, not the White House. Republican failure to deal with the problem has implications for its future well being.
I’d like you to read this set of characteristics.
Glibness and Superficial Charm
Manipulative and Conning
They never recognize the rights of others and see their self-serving behaviors as permissible. They appear to be charming, yet are covertly hostile and domineering, seeing their victim as merely an instrument to be used. They may dominate and humiliate their victims.
Grandiose Sense of Self
Feels entitled to certain things as “their right.”
George Harrison’s song “Piggies” from the White Album (written during another year of tumult, 1968) seems a perfect description of our present situation.
“When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game…. The only thing they don’t know how to handle is non-violence and humor.” – John Lennon
George Harrison at the time of The Beatles’ White Album (image courtesy The Beatles Bible)
We seem to be living in what the Chinese curse calls “interesting times.” 2016 was one of the most turbulent years in modern American political history, and the turmoil attendant to the presidential election felt exacerbated by the deaths of some of popular music’s most important figures. The list still seems breathtaking: inimitable talents David Bowie, Prince, and George Michael; Eagles founder Glen Frey; Jefferson Airplane founder Paul Kantner; both Keith Emerson and Greg Lake of ELP; songwriter extraordinaire Leonard Cohen; funk genius Maurice White…. I’ll stop here out of a kind of emotional fatigue. For one like me, it was at the least a trying year, one which left me feeling that I was losing my country to people possessed by greed and at the same time losing so many musicians whose work provided me with joy, solace, and inspiration. Yes, anyone and everyone have to die. Like many others, I suspect, I have questioned why it had to be these anyones and everyones. (My apologies to both you and ee cummings for the digression.)
Donald has been president for six days now. 1,455 to go.
In the weeks leading up to the inauguration there was all kinds of speculation as to what we might expect. Was Trump serious about his promises? (Maybe not, since he seemed to be admitting that he lied all over the place.) Was he – the gods forbid – speaking literally about all the crazy things he said he’d do? (Many people – including a lot, if not most Republicans – seemed to think he was serious, but not literal. Whatever that means.)
It’s been six days, and now we know. He was serious. He was literal. And open war has been declared on: Continue reading →
We took Uber from the Trinidad neighborhood near Gallaudet University as close as we could get to the Capitol. We were told to be on the lookout for St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, which was opening its doors for marchers who needed a bathroom, some refreshment, or to charge their phones. Our driver was from Baltimore–he’d brought a carload of women down to DC and then decided to work the city since he was already there. He dropped us off across the street from St. Mark’s. He wished us luck on the march and we wished him luck with fares. Continue reading →
In the absence of rules and sheriffs, bandits will multiply.
The end game of the heavily mediated engine driving American political strife boils down to these questions:
What is the appropriate size of the federal government?
Who should decide that?
Who should run the “right-sized” government based on what values determined by whom?
Big, big money was wagered in the 2016 election cycle on the outcome of this game as gazillionaires of the right and left poured donations (wonder how many are legal?) into competing PACs, SuperPACS, and 501C’s.
Well, so what? Politicians and their spear carriers have prevaricated, evaded, fibbed, misinformed, misdirected, and dissembled since the dawn of government.
But Sean Spicer lied. He did not disguise the lie. He told lies easily contravened. He did so acting as the representative of the president of the United States. He did so just days after promising he wouldn’t lie.
Bottom line: almost ALL Americans vote against their best interests.
For years progressives have been hammering conservatives – specifically social conservatives – who “vote against their own interests.” As in, poor working people who vote for the wealthy GOP interests that are the reason they’re poor, and whose policies insure they will remain that way. I have certainly been among this crowd – I remember wondering back in the 1992 election what the fuck could be wrong with Arkansas Bush I voters, for instance. They concluded that Dubya’s Daddy was the sort of guy “they’d like to have a beer with.” Somehow a Northeastern blueblood Skull & Boneser who’d been born with a silver spoon up his ass was more “one of them” than, you know, the guy who was actually born in the trailer park down the road.
It was irrational, it was self-defeating, and it was stupid beyond all imagining. Continue reading →
This morning I had some spam hit my email that I very nearly didn’t delete. I stopped, read it, nearly pulled it out of my spam trap, but ultimately deleted it. It belonged in my spam because I didn’t ask for it. But it was about something that I’m interested in, and I was surprised by the fact that I was actually interested in it.
It was a call to an Affordable Care Act support march in Denver. And the fact that I paused to consider marching myself is what surprised me. Continue reading →
Comparison of Inauguration crowds, 2009 to 2017 (Image Credit: PBS)
This is according to Politico, but its hardly the only source:
President Donald Trump and his team are still fuming over evidence of a relatively small crowd for his inauguration, with his chief of staff claiming the reports are an effort to “de-legitimize” Trump and another senior adviser explaining that the administration is offering “alternative facts.”
S&R’s Lisa Wright participated in yesterday’s Seneca Falls Women’s March and sent back a remarkable catalogue of photos. Those weren’t all she shot, though. This morning we invite you to review the rest of the set over at Lisa’s Instagram site.
“They never fail who die in a great cause.” – George Gordon, Lord Byron
Statue of Byron at Missolonghi, Greece (image courtesy englishlanguageandhistory.com)
Today is Lord Byron’s 229th birthday.
Much of what is written about Byron focuses on his career as a poet and his life as a celebrity in Regency England. Part of the reason for that focus is that the life Byron led by both the standards of his own time and our own contemporary standards, scandalous.
His hedonistic lifestyle eventually made him such a social pariah in his homeland that he left England, as he claimed, forever. He probably did not think at the time that he would never return; he was only 28 years old. But in less than a decade he was dead, having achieved two things: he’d written his greatest poem, the brilliant epic satire Don Juan, and he’d joined the forces fighting for Greek independence from the Ottoman empire where he met his death from fever aided by incompetent doctors who likely gave him sepsis by bleeding him with non-sterile instruments.
The question, often debated, never resolved is, why did Byron risk – and lose – his life? Continue reading →