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Friday, July 31, 2020


Sigh - Blogger has updated their interface and it's going to take me a while to figure out how to do everything, but meanwhile, let's listen to President Obama giving the eulogy for John Lewis ...

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

Joy to the World

Things have been so grim lately. Need something cheerful. Joy to the World by Three Dog Night, 1975 ...

Monday, July 27, 2020

In the Great Northwest

Wall of Moms, Black Lives Matter protesters sue Trump administration for use of tear gas, force in Portland

[...] In the lawsuit filed Monday, which was convened by the nonprofit organization Protect Democracy, protesters allege they “have been tear-gassed night after night, left vomiting and unable to eat or sleep because of the toxic poison blasted at them. They have been shot at over and over — with rubber bullets, bean bags, pepper spray, and a range of other projectiles fired at close range and with brutal effect. They have had flash-bang explosive devices detonated right in front of them. They have been forced to speak and assemble in fear of not just bodily harm, but the possibility of sudden arrest without probable cause.” ...

We shouldn't allow Trump and the conservative media to misrepresent what's happening at these mostly peaceful protests in the Great Northwest ("the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances"). Trump is making matters worse in order to make himself look capable and strong with his private militia, all so he can get re-elected. And I think there's a further future motive - this militia stationed at polling places to scare away voters, this militia used to back Trump up if he loses the election and refuses to leave.

Saturday, July 25, 2020


Timothy Snyder, Yale history professor and author of the book On Tyranny, was on Rachel Maddow's show tonight ...

Meanwhile, not satisfied with the chaos he's creating in Portland, Trump is now sending his secret militia to Seattle as well. Here's an ad on the subject from ...

Friday, July 24, 2020


Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez spoke about being accosted and sworn at (f*cking b*tch) by Republican Congressman Ted Yoho. Almost every woman will recognize what happened to AOC. I'm glad she was able to put in the congressional record what sexism is all about. The Republican Congress and the Republican president think they own us, that they can poop on women with impunity. I believe the next election will show them how very wrong they are.

Thursday, July 23, 2020


Trump, who is doing horribly with suburban women in polls, tries to get them back ...

Nope. Trump might have had more luck with women ... women, not "housewives" ... if, I don't know, perhaps he wasn't an accusdd rapist and sex offender, or if he hadn't committed adultery numerous times, or if he hadn't told teenage Ivanka to get a boob job, or if he didn't work to take women's contraception off their health care, or if he didn't try to doom legal abortion, or if he didn't berate women reporters, or if he wasn't sending his goons to attack the Portland wall of moms, or if he hadn't given well-wishes to accused sex trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell, etc, etc, etc.

Also, Trump fails at this because, as always, he tries to appeal to people's worst instincts - in this case, racism (Trump administration ends Obama fair housing rule). Trump projects his own rotten interior on to everyone else, but most of us "housewives" actually have a moral compass.

Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Trump & Maxwell

Trump answered a question about accused sex trafficker and Jeffrey Epstein's enabler, Ghislaine Maxwell, by saying he wished her well. He had no words of comfort for her victims, of course. This isn't surprising given that he was friends with Epstein and Maxwell for decades, and given that Trump himself is a sexual predator.

One aspect of this Trump comment reminds me of his comments about Roger Stone and Mike Flynn. When Stone and Flynn were arrested/on trial, Trump averred that they were being unfairly treated. Eventually Trump commuted Stone's sentence and got Barr to let Flynn off the hook. Why? Most believe it's because they had incriminating evidence about Trump.

Is it possible that Ghislaine Maxwell has incriminating evidence against Trump of a sexual nature?

More: What’s Going On With Ghislaine Maxwell and Donald Trump?

Monday, July 20, 2020

Martial law?

In this news video below, we see a navy veteran in Portland approach Trump's amorphous federal "troops" to speak to them. They sprayed him in the face with pepper spray and beat him with their batons, breaking his arm. And now Trump is planning to send more federal goons to other "Democratic" cities ...

The Republicans of the Lincoln Project have an ad about this ...

I find this incredibly disturbing. The Lincoln Project ad seems over the top, but is it? Think of all the lines Trump has crossed, all the norms he had obliterated. Think of his recent statement that he might not accept the results of the upcoming election. Think of the Dept. pf Justice and Homeland Security and the federal "troops" they command .... up to now they have gleefully followed Trump's every questionable order. Is a declaration of martial law next?

Saturday, July 18, 2020

In Oregon

In Portland, where I lived for three years ...

Trump has sent federal troops to Portland, against the wishes of local police and elected officials, to snatch peaceful protestors off the streets and drive them away in unmarked vans (they shot one peaceful protestor in the head). Trump is playing to his base, painting demonstrators as violent mobs that must be "dominated" before they can "destroy the suburbs". It's meant to distract us from the terrible job he is doing (actually not doing) on the virus.

Mayor of Portland, Ted Wheeler, states that Portland doesn't need or want these Federal troops,and that they are only making the situation worse ...

Here is the governor of Oregon, Kate Brown, with the same opinion ...

It's Trump's banana republic - we just live in it.

Thursday, July 16, 2020

The man that he is

I keep hearing people on the news wonder why Trump doesn't change his disastrous tactics in regard to the virus. Why, they ask, does he attack Dr. Fauci when that's a losing strategy? Why doesn't he make an honest effort to actively combat the virus, given that it would help him in the polls?

My simple answer ... Trump can only be himself. That's true for all of us, but in Trump's case, that means he will continue to be a sociopath. He can't and won't suddenly decide to do the right thing, even if it would be to his benefit, because that's just not who he is.

I learned this from Star Trek :)

In the episode Peak Performance from the second season of Star Trek: The Next Generation, Commander Data is pitted against Commander Riker in a war games battle.

As you would expect, Data knocks himself out trying to anticipate what Riker's moves will be ahead of time, and it takes the practicality of Counselor Troi to help him simplify things ...


DATA: I have several examples of Commander Riker's battle technique. At the Academy, he calculated a sensory blind spot on a Tholian vessel and hid within it during a battle simulation. And as a lieutenant aboard the Potemkin, his solution to a crisis was to shut down all power, and hang over a planet's magnetic poles, thus confusing his opponent's sensors.

TROI: And from these specifics, what general conclusion can you extrapolate?

DATA: Only twenty-one percent of the time does he rely upon traditional tactics. So, the Captain must be prepared for unusual cunning. Counsellor, Commander Riker will assume we have made this analysis, and knowing that we know his methods, he will alter them. But, knowing that we know that he knows that we know, he might choose to return to his usual pattern.

TROI: Wait, wait. You're over-analysing, Data. One cannot deny human nature. What kind of a man is Commander Riker?

DATA: A fighter?

TROI: Yes.

DATA: The weaker his position, the more aggressive will be his posture.

TROI: And he won't give up.

DATA: Then despite whatever options he is given, he must be ...

TROI: The man that he is. Exactly.


So am I saying people can't change? I'll refer to another science fiction quotation, this one from John Crichton of FarScape (Green Eyed Monster): "I keep hearing that you've changed. I think weather changes. And we just keep making the same mistake."

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

The test

As I've watched some of the news commentators reflect on Trump's ridiculous touting of his cognitive test results, I've found myself actually feeling sorry for him.

When that happens, I have to remind myself that Trump is not just pathetic. He is something else also - a dangerous combination of power and malice. Here's just some of what that has meant ....

- He is (E. Jean Carroll) and has sexually assaulted dozens of other women.

- He has and is *still* separating children, even toddlers and babies, from their parents at the border.

- He has pardoned war criminals.

- He has greenlit hunting, drilling, and mining in national parks.

- He has ruined the careers of countless public servants, from James Comey and Andy McCabe to Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman.

- He has rolled back environmental protections that save lives and has left the Paris Climate Accord.

- He abandoned our Kurdish allies in Syria, and has done nothing about the bounties placed on our troops in Afghanistan.

- He has mocked the disabled.

- He has defended journalist-murdering MBS.

- He wants to bring back torture.

- He assassinated an Iranian general.

- He wants a border wall with spikes to impale people, and a moat filled with snakes and alligators.

- He refuses to condemn white supremacy, and defends Confederate flag and moniments.

I could od this all day, as the list is almost endless, but you get the idea.

Monday, July 13, 2020

Star Wars

My latest movie rental was Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker ...

a 2019 American epic space opera film produced, co-written, and directed by J. J. Abrams. It is the third installment of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, following The Force Awakens (2015) and The Last Jedi (2017), and the final episode of the nine-part "Skywalker saga."

For those who haven't been watching this trilogy ...

The trilogy follows a 19-year-old orphan, Rey, and the plight of the Resistance against the First Order, which has risen from the fallen Galactic Empire. Rey learns the ways of the Force under Luke Skywalker and Leia Organa, and confronts Kylo Ren—the son of Leia and Han Solo, nephew of Luke, and grandson of Anakin Skywalker [Darth Vader] —who has fallen to the dark side.

I liked the first movie of the trilogy - The Force Awakens. It was fun to see the characters from the original series - Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker, and Han Solo. I also liked the new character played by Adam Driver - Kylo Ren.

The second film, The Last Jedi, however, wasn't very good, especially in how it portrayed Luke and Leia, so I wasn't that enthusiastic about the third film.

I was surprised, though - it was pretty good, actually. The special effects were nice and the writers seemed to try to fix the errors of the second film.

Here's one of my favorite parts of the movie, where Rey and Kylo Ren are fighting on the wreck of the old Death Star ...

And I especially liked the ending of the movie, in which Rey goes to Tatooine, the planet where Luke grew up, living with his aunt and uncle on their moisture farm. The first movie of the original series began here, with Teenage Luke wishing he could leave the farm, fearing he would never get a chance at anything better ...

That same music and scene of the binary sunset are in the ending of this latest film with Rey ...

Saturday, July 11, 2020

Robert Mueller on Roger Stone

The day after Trump commuted the sentence of his pal Roger Stone, former head of the FBI and former Special Counsel Robert Mueller has written an op-ed titled Robert Mueller: Roger Stone remains a convicted felon, and rightly so, defending his Russia investigation and Roger Stone's conviction. It's worth reading.

Friday, July 10, 2020


I don't remember Reagan's presidency that well - it happened when I had just met the ex, got married, got divorced, and then moved to Oregon, and then moved back here.

I do recall that there was some bad stuff, though: trickle-down economics and the Iran-Contra affair, etc.

It is a testament to the horror of Trump that I can now in comparison see Reagan as a person who made some mistakes but who was a decent man.

That decency is expressed in his election eve speech in which he mentioned the "shining city on a hill" ...

And in his last speech as president, which was about immigration ...

God, how far we have fallen in this reign of Trump :(

Wednesday, July 08, 2020

Don't forget

As awful as Trump is, he would not be able to accomplish all his evil, ... putting migrant children in cages, working for Putin, throwing the whole country under the coronavirus bus ... without the help and protection of Republican politicians. Once Trump is finally gone, most of these people will still be around, trying to make us forget that they sold their souls for power. Don't forget.

Tuesday, July 07, 2020


Bought a Hibiscus. Always wanted one - they remind me of Bermuda, where I lived for a while as a kid.

Monday, July 06, 2020


This, Long Cool Woman in a Black Dress, is one of my favorite songs by The Hollies, partly because it's atypical for them. The lyrics tell of an FBI agent on a stakeout ...

Saturday, July 04, 2020

Sleepy Hollow

- Ichabod Crane and General George Washington

Happy July 4th. I would actually like this holiday if it just wasn't for the fireworks. One of my favorite past tv shows gave me a special appreciation for the time of the Revolutionary War - Sleepy Hollow.

In the show, Ichabod Crane, a British soldier during the war, becomes a double agent working for George Washington after having been convinced of America's cause. Through magic, Crane is put into suspended animation until the present, so that he can find and destroy the Headless Horseman. OK, it's hard to explain ;) but this will help ...

Sadly the show was cancelled after 4 seasons and the last couple of seasons were not up to original quality, but the first two are a lot of fun,

Thursday, July 02, 2020

Throwback Thursday

A song, Wildfire, from 1975 by Michael Murphy ...

Ghislaine Maxwell

The FBI has arrested Jeffrey Epstein's alleged co-conspirator in his crimes, British socialite Ghislaine Maxwell. The Southern District of New York is running the case ...

Trump and Barr recently fired lead SDNY prosecutor Geoffrey Berman, who held out on leaving until Barr agreed to allow Berman's deputy, U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss, to take his place instead of Trump golf crony Jay Clayton. Is this case against Epstein/Maxwell one of those "pending cases" Berman was trying to protect from Trump and Barr? Will Trump and Barr try to mess with the case now that Maxwell may be a source of new information, perhaps information against them?

Let's not forget ...

- Trump was a close friend of Jeffrey Epstein for decades (Jeffrey Epstein Was a ‘Terrific Guy,’ Donald Trump Once Said. Now He’s ‘Not a Fan.’)

- William Barr's father knew and hired Jeffrey Epstein to work as a teacher at a private high school he ran, though Epstein had no credentials (William Barr Is the Wrong Person to Lead the Jeffrey Epstein Investigation)

- Jeffrey Epstein died under mysterious circumstances while in a federal prison run by Barr (Jeffrey Epstein’s death: what we know and don't know)