A Nother Sundry Assortment

Well, here I am on a third sundry tear, (pronounced TARE to the background music of rainfall tears … ):

A Huge, Gargantuan, Bigly Sigh of Relief

19 June 2018, or Juneteenth,  the United States withdrew from the United Nations Human Rights Council.  Secretary of State Mike Pompeo could be heard stating with no irony that “The Human Rights Council has become an exercise in shameless hypocrisy, with many of the world’s worst human-rights abuses going ignored and some of the world’s most serious offenders sitting on the council itself.”

And so a righteous walk out on a modicum of symbolic participation on a committee for human rights writ large on the international community.

And the United Nations sighed in collective relief that they didn’t have to kick us out show us the door.

Womp womp.

(My bold.)

Major International Agreements

Under the current administration Trump Regime, the US continues to take itself out of major international agreements, (the Paris Agreement, the Iran nuclear deal, et al ad nauseum).

We’re not leaders.

We’re retreaters.

Speaking of retreat, which Trump golf course is the Prescedense on today?

Fake News

Thursday, 21 June 2018, I was dismayed to read that the Prescedense drew a crowd of 9000 to the AMSOIL Arena in Duluth, MN. Rangers. Minnesota Iron Rangers. In the state of my birth, Minnesotans chanted “lock her up” and “build the wall” like it was 2016 all over again in the very same venue where Frood and her esteemed colleagues collected their diplomas 6 weeks ago. Ugh.

Turns out many Rangers do not trust the photographic evidence they’ve seen of families separated at the southern border. They do not trust the news. They would rather believe a bloviated Teflon Cheeto who states with impunity that Hillary Rodham Clinton, a private citizen now, should be locked up for “crimes she committed, which were numerous.” Numerous despite the cursory Google evidence that there were no, zero (0), zip, nada indictments brought against HRC. While on the taxpayer dime, the GOP insisted that in the haystack was a needle and in 6 YEARS — Benghazi, 4 yrs and e-mails, 2 yrs — no needles were found by the GOP.


The Prescedense is practiced at the art of showmanship. A cult of personality. The music of lies sung to the melody of truth. Have you ever found yourself singing along to a catchy tune only to realize that the lyrics are “off”? And by “off,” I mean reprehensible?

“Political language — and with variations this is true of all political parties, from Conservatives to Anarchists — is designed to make lies sound truthful and murder respectable, and to give an appearance of solidity to pure wind.

Political language has to consist largely of euphemism, question-begging and sheer cloudy vagueness.”

George Orwell

(My bold.)

Ah! There it is. Pure wind and sheer cloudy vagueness. Flatulence sung from the mouth of the Prescedense repeated often and with confidence, repeated by Fox (pronounced faux) News, repeated yet again by the Prescedense and it starts to sound … like … truth? I get it. I’m all in. I want to sing along to Fake News too! Pretend news and I have cites:

June 22, 2018, 2:02 PM Trump defends border wall 

In Duluth, MN, 10 miles from the Mexican border¹, Prescedense Trump stated with great bluster that “we’re going to keep families together and the border is going to be just as tough as it’s been.”²

This announcement came after a large wall sprang up overnight along the US-Canadian border 163 miles to the north of Duluth separating several thousand US refugee families seeking asylum at the border. Presumably ordered, designed, and built covertly by the Trudeau Dynasty to keep US immigrants out, several theories have been posited that the US actually built the wall to keep US refugees citizens IN.

It could happen.

Wallstreet Walgreens Drugstore

19 June 2018 General Electric was removed as a contributing element in the Dow Jones Industrial Average Index and replaced by … Walgreens.

A multinational conglomerate in the Dow-Jones Industrial reduced to … drugs.

Say ‘hello’ to the future and pass the tequila.

Doors.

A mental health break comes in the form of a campaign commercial with a strong statement from a fearless girl grown into a fierce woman — Air Force combat veteran MJ Hegar and her relationship with doors. Do not slam a door in her face and tell her she can’t. MJ Hegar is an undercover superhero Democrat running for Congress in heavily read red Texas District 31.

Powerful. I am going to follow this campaign.


¹ Duluth, by Gore Vidal, 1983. If memory serves, in the opening scene in the book, Beryl and a friend die in her car of carbon monoxide poisoning from exhaust fumes. The car she’s driving is stuck in a snowbank and they are overcome by car exhaust. True story that happened 10 miles from the Mexican border. A fiction novel, a novel fiction. Ah! news that’s fit to print.

² Colvin, Jill and Jonathan Lemire. “Trump defends his hard-line immigration policies to cheers.” Chicago Tribune.com, Chicago Tribune, 21 June 2018.

A Sorted Sordid Sundry Assortment

As I prepare to click ‘Publish,’ I note that this is two (2) Sundry Assortments in a row.

Oh well.

I. Practice makes perfect.

I imagine this is the mise-en-scene as Ann practices piano. The satisfaction of action — keys hammering, notes hit, melody gone awry or even missing — writ large on a small stuffed figure made in the image of the Prescedense.

img_5916

Nice work, Ann. Keep up the practice.

And big data evidence would suggest that inclusion of an image in a blog post jacks the number of page hits. So there’s that. Shameless pandering to image clicks. Where is as is.

II. Check your Sanders.

Whilst surfing the news late last week, I watched as White House practiced liar Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders conducted a press briefing in which Brian Karem questioned her empathy for children yanked from their parents or her lack thereof.

Then I tripped across a Twitter thread critical of an article which shed light on Sanders late arrival to the realization that the criminal justice system and incarceration rates are racist.  Whoa! Is Sarah Huckabee Sanders experiencing a moment of “woke”? Nope. The individual in question was Bernie, not Sarah.

A tale of two Sanders.

One needs to sit down and shut up.

And the other one needs to …

Sit down and shut up.¹

III. Think of the children.

In the conversation between Sarah Kendzior and Bonnie North at Boswell Books on Thursday, June 7, Sarah made mention of the Stoneman Douglas students forced into activism and the national spotlight not by choice but by circumstance.

And as I watch David Hogg’s Twitter feed,  he is a fan of space. He has interests which do not involve firearms. He chose MSD high school for specific classes offered whose focus is a different kind of shooting (television production).

He did not choose gun control activism. He did not choose to be the spokesperson to push for sane gun policy and laws. He did not choose March for Our Lives.

It chose him.

Childhood lost.

IV. Think of the children.

During discussion of the book Evicted by Matthew Desmond last week, an overarching idea was that as a society we should be concerned about the lives of children raised in poverty. Regardless of poor decisions or life choices made by parents, children should be given a chance — food, clothing, shelter, education.

Children watch. Children listen. Children learn.

And what we are teaching them as a society is …

Childhood lost. We send the message that we’re okay with that.

Also of note, grow up and you’re still on your own as an adult too …

V. Think of the children.

This interview with a Japanese internment camp prisoner on the separation of children from their parents seeking asylum considers the long-term effects incarceration has on children.

And Japanese internment after WWI is part of USA history. 

And Japanese Americans weren’t the first. We’ve been here before.

Ugh.

We can do better.

VI. Sordid.

The Obama and George W. Bush “administrations were morally and pragmatically opposed to separating immigrant children from their families, even if some adult immigrants were clearly taking advantage of that compassion.”

Compassion. Are we ultimately afraid that someone might take advantage of our compassion? Are we afraid to be played? To allow a stranger, a foreigner to have a shot at a life lived … with us? With the full benefits of citizenship?

Well, if the current stance and objections to immigration and asylum continue, we won’t  need to worry about being all that. Walls will be needed to keep us …

IN.

VII. Lies. Sordid Lies.

From Bill Kristol (I love quoting an ‘R’ when it is agreeable to my POV):

Trump: The Democrats made us do it.

Stephen Miller: It’s our policy to do it.

Sec. Nielsen: We’re not doing it.

17 Jun 2018 6:13 PM. Tweet.

And lies. The GOP controls three branches of government. The separation of children from their parents is not the fault of the Democrats.

This is the Trump Administration’s Regime’s POLICY.

VIII. Sordid mouthwash.

Sordid (adjective): involving ignoble actions and motives; arousing moral distaste and contempt.

And so as Jefferson Beauregard Sessions, III quotes from the Bible to justify the separation of children from their parents, I find that I want to wash his mouth out with a big chewy bar of Ivory soap — figuratively.

And yes, literally.

Do it for the children. Do it for childhood lost. Do it to reinforce separation of church and state. It is hard to watch these people² commit crimes against humanity by quoting a religious text and not want harm to come visit them. Covering your dirty and squalid actions with Bible verses really tests my sunny disposition, Jeff.

Mental health. I need a Jeff Sessions troll doll to keep my mini-Teflon Cheeto company (thanks, Ann).

Don’t want to see it, but I hope that’s a fully loaded bowl.

img_5917


  • ¹ Bernie Sanders is not a Democrat.
  • Bernie Sanders’ rhetoric and need for national attention continue to divide the Democratic Party at a time when division is death at the polls.
  • Bernie Sanders has too much chronological wealth and experience to run for President in 2020. Grow up and back somebody else in 2020, Bernie.

² “These people.” Yes, it’s a pejorative sideways reference. Always was. Still is.

A Sundry Assortment: Reminded.

Protesting.

While reading this op-ed on “Why do whites oppose the NFL protests?“, I’m reminded of the scene in Arrested Development where Lindsay is herded into exercising her 1st Amendment Rights in the Free Press Zone:

“To many whites, the only good black protest is no black protest.”

-Steve Chapman, Chicago Tribune Op-Ed, September 26, 2017

Stay inside the box.

Remain on your feet. We don’t want to have to address systemic racism. Explicit or implicit bias. Remember when Barack Obama was elected? That was the end of racism. A bunch of OWGs said so.

Don’t upset the status quo.

Ugh.

Where did all the neo-Nazis come from?

I am reminded of Max Von Sydow’s monologue delivered as Frederick in Woody Allen’s movie “Hannah and Her Sisters.”

“It’s the wrong question.”

“The question is, why doesn’t it happen more often?”

The video starts and 0:20 and by 1:31 we have:

“If Jesus came back and saw what’s going on in his name, he’d never stop throwing up.”

Brilliant. And I’m reminded that the movie, Hannah and Her Sisters, is 32 years old. I am the one waking up to the gradations of, and the degradation in the society around me.

Speaking of Which, Woody Allen and #MeToo

I reminded that in the 32 years since Hannah and Her Sisters was filmed, well, Woody Allen is not all that. Woody had an affair with Soon-Yi Previn, essentially his step-daughter who is 35 years his junior, (she was the adopted daughter of Mia Farrow and Andre Previn). There were Polaroids.

And he’s been accused by Dylan Farrow of sexual abuse that occurred when she was 7 years old.

Ugh, Woody. Just ugh.

Sandals. Scandals.

While speeding through some headlines recently, I saw that President Barack Obama was quoted saying, “I didn’t have sandals.”

And I wondered at what event President Obama was footwear deficient.

So I backed up, slowed down and read “I didn’t have scandals.”

I was pained at the thought he would be denied participation somewhere, probably really fun, due to lack of sandals.

And I am reminded that once not long ago, the White House was lacking in sandals scandals.

A Sundry Assortment: BOLD News

Celebrating Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)!

Oh, so much to woW!

First, congratulations to Senator Duckworth and family on the birth of Maile Pearl Bowlsby this week. Wow! Senator Duckworth is the first US Senator to give birth while in office.

Second, Senator Duckworth is 50 and Maile was conceived via in vitro fertilization. I understand that IVF is time-consuming, painful, and expensive, but what gives me pause is fifty (50). Infants and fifty? Combine the two? I just wouldn’t.even.ever. So, woW.

And woW is just Mom turned upside down.

Finally, Senator Duckworth lost her legs in Iraq in 2004. The Black Hawk helicopter Captain Duckworth was piloting ¹ was shot down.

2020? I could vote for a President Duckworth².

Michael Cohen

A search warrant was carried out in the offices of Michael Cohen, Trump’s personal lawyer. Lookin’ for crimes:

“There is no “deep state” conspiracy against Donald Trump. Law enforcement officers, federal included, tend to lean right. If they are finding crimes, they are finding crimes.  It’s not ideological (which frankly, can’t necessarily be said about Hillary Clinton).” (@JoyAnnReid, 09 Apr 2018 08:40 PM. Tweet.)

And in his defense, Prescedense Trump blew public kisses Twitter gaskets:

“Attorney-client privilege is dead!” (@realDonaldTrump, 10 Apr 2018 04:07 AM. Tweet.)

“A TOTAL WITCH HUNT!!!” (@realDonaldTrump,10 Apr 2018 04:08 AM. Tweet.) NOTE, ALL CAPS WAS PRESCEDENSE’s IDEA!!!

And Twitterers responded:

“It’s actually doing just fine unless a federal judge believes there is likelihood that you and your attorney were committing a crime.” (@Judd Legum, 10 Apr 2018 04:24 AM. Tweet.)

The federal judge, in this case, is a Trump appointee.

And with humor.

And with Tang:

“I see Tang the Conqueror hasn’t tweeted since he unraveled at his Syria photo op. We’ll see how long that lasts.” (@eclecticbrotha, 10 Apr 2018 2:30 AM)

I hate that I know immediately the ‘Tang’ in the above reference is not to a drink the early astronauts took into space but refers to the sitting POTUS, President of the United States. And I hate that it makes me laugh.

Ugh.

S*it Looks French.

In an effort to return some class to the public discourse, I would like to propose that instead of editing the ‘i’ in ‘shit’, we edit the ‘h’.  Thus, ‘shit’ becomes ‘s*it.’ It looks French and like the French, we can drop the sound of the ‘t’ at the end of the word thereby softening the whole sound.

S*it would be pronounced: ess-EEE.  There. Fixed that s*it.

Likewise, ‘shithole’ would become ‘s*it*ole.’

‘Shithole countries’ would be pronounced: ess-EEE ol-LAY countries. A musical international mix of French and Spanish meaning so much worse spelled out in actual English.

Bitter Southerner

New York Times editorialist Charles Blow recently tweeted:

“Ppl often comment to me: “You need your own show.” My opinion: Never going to happen. I’m unapologetically black and unapologetically southern (which is markedly diff from northern/western/urban blackness). America doesn’t even believe that the intellectual black southern exists!” (@CharlesMBlow, 14 Mar 2018 03:27 PM)

And so it came to pass that I tripped across the website Bitter Southerner and specifically, the gorgeous photo essay Blue Alabama on the site.

Mr. Blow’s comment combined with the recent spate of southern writers who offer reading alternatives to J.D.Vance’s widely panned Hillbilly Elegy, has made me think a bit more critically about the voices that are misunderstood, caricatured, and drawn as cartoonish buffoons by the media.

In addition to mainstream news alternatives like The Root – Black news, opinions, politics and culture – I share The Bitter Southerner. A quote from their first inaugural membership drive:

“I have yet to find a publication that so capably and gracefully captures the nuance, soul, tragedy, and beauty of the region like yours does. I just wanted to thank you for that.”

And from the About page:

If you are a person who buys the states’ rights argument … or you fly the rebel flag in your front yard … or you still think women look really nice in hoop skirts, we politely suggest you find other amusements on the web. The Bitter Southerner is not for you.

The Bitter Southerner is for the rest of us. It is about the South that the rest of us know: the one we live in today and the one we hope to create in the future.”

My bold in the above. I confess, I wondered. Enjoy!

Or not.


¹ Note to self: Read all three Parts of this story.

² Senator Duckworth was born in Thailand. This might preclude her being President but her father was a US Army veteran who could trace his family back to the American Revolutionary War. (Source: Wikipedia. Web. 12 April 2018)

A Sundry Assortment of I has been BUSY!

Well, this is certainly interesting. I’ll kick off this sundry assortment with a diversion. Oh, look a bird!

Grammarly, not Grammarly.

Grammarly offers a free writing assistant, a plug-in, that checks basic spelling, punctuation, and grammar as you write.  Given that my writing is given to breaking the rules, Grammarly also offers to clue me into my advanced yellow mistakes for $139.95/year.  On a per-word benefit and an average of $11.66/month, this is probably a pretty good deal.

Oh, but what Grammarly doesn’t know. Style. Mine. Well, maybe.

My Freshman English professor had no problem with broken rules as long as they were asterisked on paper.  I’d asterisk the incomplete sentences. Well, they weren’t sentences really. Phrases missing a noun. Or a verb.* And I’d asterisk sentences that kicked off with a connector.*  And truth be told, although I could use a refresher on the rules, it seems like self-abuse to pay Grammarly to correct my “style”.*

Well, maybe.

Today, Grammarly suggested that the title of “I’ve been BUSY!” should be corrected to “I has been BUSY!” and I’m given to pause and consider. It would seem Grammarly has style of the “I haz cheeseburger” variety. I could get behind that. Maybe I should invest in the advanced Grammarly checker.

And while constructing the above, Grammarly reverted to “I’ve been BUSY!” as the correct form which we knew all along. We were entertained by Grammarly’s flair which was fleeting. Back to asterisks and yellow.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Anews privilege.

By “anews” privilege, I’m using ‘a’ in the ‘not’ form.  Atypical is not typical like atheist is not a theist.

I missed blogging last week. Wholly immersed in things other, I traipsed and tripped through my daily adventures and didn’t really catch up on all the news that’s fit to holler until the end of the week.

The current events going on in our struggle toward a more perfect union are overwhelming — Russian influence in social media, the Mueller investigation, civil rights assaults, the Dreamer debacle, the Prescedense and the Porn Star¹ … it’s a long list.

And my life, my movements, my actions were not impacted one whit.

And that is privilege.

A rumination on Pi Day, (03.14).²

Pi (Π). Pi describes the circle, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter, ≅ 3.14.

But pi’s true superpower is in getting us out of the clock-time domain and into frequency. And the frequency domain is where the magic happens.

Think of Alice through the looking glass. Pi opens a door labeled ‘Fourier Transforms’ and all the convoluted filtering functions perk up their ears and run like multiplied gazelles. Because they are.

And thanks to Pi, a mathematical constant, we have telecommunications. Just think of it.  I can throw a text up and into the air and down it falls on the phone of my friend sitting right next to me.

Like magic. And no one else saw our lips move.

Just a whisper.

Wow.


But Pi doesn’t wait for anybody.

I’m not sure what that last statement means but I feel it to be true. Intuition. Pi is constant and a constant.  Whether or not you find the value in pi, pi doesn’t care.

And as someone totally agog at the capability of technology, it is good to step away from Pi. From technology.

Eat some real pie.

In Men in Black II, the Young Agent K : “Pie don’t work unless you let it.”

And here is my shout out to CaityPies in Nashville, Tennessee.

Mmmmm, try pie. It doesn’t wait for anybody.

RIP, Stephen Hawking (1942.01.08 – 2018.03.14)

I miss knowing that someone so brilliant and so funny as Stephen Hawking is not with us anymore.

I need to read his books and I need to watch the movie, The Theory of Everything.

He also predicted the end of the universe recently. Thankfully on a time scale that doesn’t look to scale to us humans. We don’t need to mark our calendars. Next week is secure and scientific notation will be required to describe the time to reach zero energy.

But what if the approach to zero energy happens like the big bang?

So many questions. After the real scientists review his paper, I need to investigate. What if we drop to zero in the amount of time it took to blast it all apart into the free-wheeling solar systems and galaxies we currently enjoy? And if the stars run out of energy, whut? What about entropy? Enthalpy? Where will that energy go? Conservation. Conservation of energy.

And I remember how confused I was in Thermodynamics. Oh dear.

Stay tuned.

Or not.

Strange Bedfellows

Oh the glory of the diametrically opposed yet bedfellows!

For your consideration:

Dr. Willie Parker & Satanists

Dr. Willie Parker is an evangelical Christian who defends abortion.

And so do Satanists.

Diametrically opposed on religious beliefs. Bedfellows in women’s rights and agency over her own body.

NRA & GOP/Trump Administration

The NRA uses the 2nd amendment to defend gun ownership – “being necessary to the security of a free state.”

And the GOP & Trump are all about those guns too!

Bedfellows on gun ownership, if ever there was an administration tending towards dictatorship and a non-free state possibly requiring citizen intervention, it is this one!

Go figure.


¹ Yes, I’m capitalizing ‘Porn Star.’ If Stormy Daniels gets Prescedense OTUS out of the office, she deserves all the capitals.

² This is for the maths. And I may not have all the words right, but the poetry is there.

 

A Sundry Assortment: It’s drafty in here.

Ah so! Here I am circling up to my first year of Viva blogging and Happy Birthday! Or something-something and given the events of the last three weeks — I mean, doesn’t the SOTU address when the Prescedense Shouts Out to Us All, already seem a lifetime ago? — I am woefully behind.

My DRAFTS folder is full of shits and farts fits and starts. In remembrance celebration of a year spent on the crate of holler-into-the-void, I’m cleaning out my DRAFTS over-sharing.  Where is, as is. Enjoy! Or not.

From December 2017

I was particularly taken by the senate race between Doug Jones (D) and Roy Moore (R) in Alabama. Even though Roy Moore dropped loads of turds in his basket of deplorable behavior, the GOP backed his run. 

White Women in Alabama

Well, how’s this for news? 63% of white women who voted in Alabama voted for Roy Moore.

I feel their fear.  It’s palpable. It’s contagious.  After all, who wants to upset the status quo? “I feel more comfortable with my future in the hands of a Republican, no matter how bad he is.” Hmmm, instead of “hands of a Republican” substitute “Roy Moore”, and substitute “my daughter” or “my granddaughter”, for “my future” and the statement becomes “I feel more comfortable with my daughter in the hands of Roy Moore, no matter how bad he is.”

I fear their fear.

And they claim they fear abortion. I fear for them that the Roy Moore’s of this world make abortion for unwanted and unplanned pregnancies due to rape necessary.

But I reject their worldview. And that’s part of their fear. The fear of rejection. The fear that when all is said and done, they won’t have a horse to ride in on. And they don’t. It was not a horse. It was an ass. An old racist ass.

When did they learn to hate themselves?

Madeleine Albright: “There is a special place in hell for women who don’t help other women.”

GOP: RIP; RIP: GOP

Roy Moore? Really? He was the best the GOP could pull from the swamp to represent Alabama in the Senate?

GOP: RIP Mitch McConnell

So Mitch McConnell sat on Merrick Garland’s confirmation as a Supreme Court Justice for 10 months. It was about a principle and not about a person.

Well, I’ll bite.  It was about a person. Barack Obama. President Obama nominated Merrick Garland. See also, Mitch McConnell is a pro-civil rights racist.

And now? The current Prescedense federal judge nominees can’t answer basic legal questions.

And I’m not opposed to a federal judge with a federal election committee background, but from the video, it looks like Matthew Spencer Petersen would be getting lots of on-the-job training.

Just like Jared and Ivanka. Oh well.

And I’m smdh.

Black women in Alabama

Oh man. All glory, laud and honor.

On Tuesday in Alabama, black women voters got out the vote and voted in their best interests for Doug Jones delivering a dose of smite² onto Roy Moore. I want to say ‘healthy dose of smite’ but the margin of victory was still within 2 percentage points.

¹ The noun becomes a verb.

² The verb becomes a noun.

Black women elsewhere

Meanwhile, in the nation’s capital, Karen Bass (D-California, 37th district) continues to punch in the mouth challenge administration officials — here, the FBI Director — on the fictional historical black identity extremists identified in a report issued by a ghost at the FBI to law enforcement agencies around the country. “The harm that document is causing.” Continued praise.

Just for the record, if black women could round up Millenials and form a viable party, I could get behind that.

Paul Ryan

Since this ‘Paul Ryan’ snippet was written, Robert Mueller has indicted Russians, Russian companies, Paul Manafort, Rick Gates. This observation holds true.

Well if ever there was a reason for Robert Mueller to stop the investigation of Russia involvement in business conducted from the Oval Office election meddling it is the US Presidential order of succession chart. 

But that’s just choosing to keep the Prescedense of incompetent evil over a President practiced in evil exercised and honed. Oh well.

And given that Paul Ryan is 2nd in line, reports of his stepping down after the 2018 elections are in my opinion, wildly optimistic. If the Russian investigation removes Trump and Pence from office, Paul Ryan will be #46.  Sit with that for a moment. Breathe.

He is a big fan of the writer Ayn Rand giving everyone in his office copies of Atlas Shrugged for book discussion. But I prefer to consider Paul Ryan in light of The Fountainhead, for many reasons. Primary is that it is the only epic brick weighty tome Rand wrote that I ever read.

Consider the definition of fountainhead (noun): An original source of something. 

Howard Roark, the protagonist of The Fountainhead, is an architect with a singular vision, the source of a building blueprint so good, so perfect, that it has to be built his way or no way. He works outside educational institutions, outside of the mainstream. He is his own man loosely and accurately based on Frank Lloyd Wright.

And plot: Howard has a vision so pure, so right for the construction of an apartment building that he is unwilling to modify his design one iota. He would rather his building be blown up than built. At Fountainhead’s end, Howard Roark is sitting on the pile of rubble of his own design, his own making, that he didn’t purchase and he didn’t pay for. He’ll make rubble of it all because he can’t compromise.

And so I submit Paul Ryan for the real-life role of Howard Roark, an uncompromising architect to oversee the rubble of the US economy.

Explain to me how Medicare and Medicaid trickle down. How do roads get built? Infrastructure created and maintained? A healthy populace? Children educated? It’s a long list.

Paul Ryan, a lifelong hypocrite. Benefitted by birth with white male privilege, he wants to remove the social safety net for everyone else.

From October 2017

Different seats

When I picked the tagline “Honey, I’m a real live writer …”, I didn’t realize how difficult it would be to report on the action from my bleacher seats.  Things and stuffs happen so fast. In the last week:

  • An attack on a concert crowd in Las Vegas with a weapon of mass destruction raining down from on-high killed 59, injured more than 500.
  • The Prescedense OTUS pitched paper towels to Puerto Ricans as if they need to merely wipe up a coffee spill after hurricane devastation.
  • Although early reports of his death were exaggerated maybe even greatly, Tom Petty died. In the process, social and non-social media fell all over themselves in the quest to be the first to report. There is no shame.

And the year in DRAFTS is littered with post-it notes — titles, phrases, links strung together with a nod, a tilt of the head toward an idea. Perhaps they’ll spark a complete thought eventually. Where is, as is they are unreadable.

I’ll end this clearing session with some love for OWGs.

OWG

Old White Guys.  I saw a pic of Jim Sensenbrenner and someone asked: “What can I say?” And all I could think of was “Old White Guy like these OWGs?

And this is hard.  Most, if not all of the OWGs I know, actually want to change the world for the better for people who are not OWGs. Which is sweet.

I attended a meeting of feminists on campus in the early 1980’s. I left with the feeling that in order to participate, I would need to get angry and stay angry and sever relations with 80% of my family and I actually love and even like a couple of them.  That just didn’t seem right.

So what are we left with?  How do we distinguish good OWGs from the bad?

And then this year I  discovered that the divisions between us, between US citizens struggling a more perfect union, is more complex than individual age, color, sex, etc.

I look in the mirror and whaddaya know? 53% of OWLs (Old White Ladies, yes, this is a bit pejorative) are not so sweet either.

OWLs. Profiling.

A Sundry Assortment: Winter Olympics 2018

Before I start on my sundry assortment of 2018 Winter Olympic observations, I must say that after Mueller’s indictment of Russians meddling in the 2016 election,  I tripped across the comment “It is still possible Mueller could still indict Americans for knowingly helping Russia.” ¹ (Hat Tip: WTFJHT)

And I thought: All 63,985,134 of them? Mueller might be taking names …

Bwahahaha! Okay. Enough. On to a couple itty-bitty Olympic-size observations.


Men’s Figure Skating

I happen to be liking Tara Lipinski & Johnny Weir commentary. Not at first and every now and then, sure, I’d still like them to shut up. But as Mr. Viva & I watch an entire skating event, as the precision of performance on the ice goes up, their rate of commentary goes down. And when I listen to them yammer, they do know of what they speak. They have occupied Olympic ice.

Which brings me to presence. For many men,”sports” do not depend on having a “presence.” And let’s face it, the best figure skaters exude a dynamic presence on the ice. Figure skating is not about facing down an opponent or other team and overcoming by scoring more points or beating them up.

And this is why many men don’t see the sport in Men’s Figure Skating competitions. No one is tackled. No harm. No foul. There is music. There is choreography. There are not uniforms.  Individuals wear “outfits.”

No sport.

This explains a lot.

Speaking of Presence

Johnny Weir has presence in spades. He is a joy and a delight!

And I love that his hair last night in profile — swept up and back and very black — reminded me of my great-aunt Amy. And she was beautiful.

Thank you, Mr. Weir.

Pink Floyd takes the ice.

Thrown into the mix of classical music during the final skate of the Men’s Ice Skating championship last night was a skate to a Pink Floyd medley including Shine on You Crazy Diamond and Money.

And then Mr. Viva & I reflected. Pink Floyd’s song Money was released in 1973 or forty-five (45) years ago.

It a classic.

Now it’s like, classical …

Extreme Sports

Back in the day, more than 45 years ago, in black and white, I watched skiers go off the end of the ski jump and watched the official tape measurers measure the length of the jump.  And catching air and sailing, ski tips to the nose while in flight, landing with maximum distance. I was mesmerized.

I haven’t been followed the addition of new extreme winter sports to the Olympics. And so, I watch drop-jawed gobsmacked the half-pipe snowboarding and aerial freestyle skiing or whatever it’s called, events. (“The US Stunk at Winter Olympics Until Extreme Sports Came Along”)

Hurl yourself down a ski jump, flip a couple times in the air, land backward and ski to the next jump which is taken backward, perform a couple more flips, land. This is extreme. Also, the face plants into snow and ice on some spills are painful just to watch. I’m relieved when the athlete gets up and waves their arms and … they’re ready to go again? What!?

And I wonder what sports get added after Extreme Winter Sports? Extreme Winter Sports on Steroids? No, steroids are banned. Extreme Winter Sports Plus? Extreme Men’s Figure Skating? Extreme <insert event that’s not yet extreme here>?

Or maybe the Olympic Committee could consider adding age categories.  Give the ‘olds’ some medals. Extremely Old Winter Sports.  Aging out is not an option.

I mean, we can sing along to Pink Floyd.


¹ ¹Strohm, Chris. Mueller Still Investigating Possible Collusion, Source Says” Bloomberg. 16 February 2018 2:32 PM CST. Web. 17 February 2018.