Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Time Out for Surgery, Please

No, I haven't been goofing off. Just getting ready for another surgery in the next two weeks. All kinds of tests, etc. This is the third in about 7 months.

The first two were hip replacements and they have worked out great.

This third one is smaller but a bit spookier. Geting something done about an aneurism on my aorta. These last three words sound like the lead into an old-fashioned and really corny song: "She was only an aneurism on an aorta but she was all the world to me."

Keep an eye on Trump while I'm messing with the medicos. But don't let him eat your life. He is mostly a sound and (lately) a fury, signifying nothing. He wants your attention.

Say a prayer, or whatever you say, that I come through this ok. Got to finish the book I'm writing and got to get back to this blog. This is such a great year in politics!

Like those kids this weekend! Wasn't that great! They are wonderful.

So are you. And together you and 82-year-old me, and the 1500 woment who are running for offices, and those 800,000 kids are going to boot Trump and the Trumpists right over the pasture fence.

Like Michael Moore said early on, "There's more of us than there are of them."

Friday, March 23, 2018

Broken News? We Are Tired of Trump.

The Washington Post this morning just put up this banner in red at the top of the front page as Breaking News:
Trump says he is ‘considering a veto’ of $1.3 trillion spending bill approved by Congress that would have staved off a shutdown.  

Is this really news? 

It's just more of Trump's tiresome, non-stop grab for the spotlight. It's broken news. I'm not interested in what he "considers" because he doesn't really consider anything. He just shoots from the hip like a two-bit gun slinger who likes the noise of shooting. Tomorrow (or even by 3:15 this afternoon) he won't remember what he said today. 

Except he will remember that today he appointed John Bolton to lead us into war. Bolton is a hawk supremo, an old guy who thinks rattling nukes is cool. Actually he says using them is cool. But I'm not going to sweat this one either. I gave 50 years of my life to quaking in my boots about nuclear war with the Russians. How do you flee nuclear attack with six young children and only 30 minutes notice? How would I continue to get the anti-seizure medicine for my youngest child who had epilepsy? We lived right at the western edge of the USA, where all the techies were then and are now. Prime target. I even figured out where we would flee to: a Native American reservation in the rugged mountains in the far north of California. 

I have not only see this nuclear horror scary film before; I have seen Trump's entire act. So have you. He's figured out he can keep the spotlight on himself by saying outrageous things. And by firing people. "Sticks and stones may break our bones but wild talk just gets boring."  

I just hope he doesn't get wise to the fact that he is boring a lot of people. Maybe then he will switch to action: such as declaring war on North Korea. Or invading Iran for a regime change. 

If he does anything of importance, I'll check it out. Otherwise I am going back to the original focus of this blog:  the how of politics. Actually for a while Trump was useful in a political primer because he illustrated beautifully how not to do politics. Now he's just repeating himself and his mistakes. 

The only things about Trump that may be compelling are the legal issues that we glimpse relative to the Mueller investigation. Mueller keeps a tight lid on, however, so there's not much to glimpse there in terms of quantity. What has emerged, however, is quite significant as to quality, and I plan on doing a round-up this weekend of where we are now with Mueller.

The focus of this Out Front Politics blog as I now see it should be on (1) winning the fall Congressional election for Democrats and to thereby save our country, (2) winning the state legislatures' fall races for Democrats, (3) using the fall results to get rid of Trump and make sure his kind never comes back into the presidency, and (4) embracing the kind of campaign that won in Alabama in December and in PA's 18th district last week. This fall election is supremely important not only because it's a way to rid ourselves of Trump and bar his possible successors but because it gives us the opportunity to rid ourselves of politics so tarnished by big money that America is no longer a democracy.  It's a Dollar Store. A Billion Dollar Store. 

But, okay, okay! Yes, I will harpoon Moby Trump if an exceptionately incredible thing happens. Or if he actually does something. (Now I'm thinking I may write a review on how he actually did nothing of any consequence accept divide some weeping families. And a posting on the great good he unintentionally has done for the Democratic progressives. That will be a bit of a surprise, right?)

Meantime, let's believe that somehow the military has provided against Trump starting any nuclear attacks. They did with Nixon, but I'll explain that another time. Right now it's worth noting sadly that there are fewer military guys around Trump than before. Today a screaming and demented hawk replaced one of the generals I was counting on to keep Trump away from the launch codes.

Goodbye, General McMasters. I am really, really, really sorry to see you leave as Director of National Security. Any chance you could hide the nuclear launch codes on your way out?

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Misspellings in Trump White House Tell Us a Lot.

Typos, spelling mistakes are common in Trump’s White House  nyt 3-22-18

You wanna laugh? Or cry?

The evil that men do lives on after them. So does their wretched disregard for our language a la Trump.

Their written mistakes speak volumes, saying:

1. The current White House and its boss Trump have no respect for the public to whom the documents are addressed.

2. Trump et al are poorly educated.

3. They don't give a damn about what they are talking about,

4. They don't respect the written word. Such as in contracts. Or in the laws. They feel free to flaunt.

Boy, are they flaunters!

Well, honey, let's flaunt too. Let's flaunt our anti-GOP, anti-Trump votes in November. Let's throw   out the Trump-enabling Congress. That's O-U-T and out goes GOP!

Saturday, March 17, 2018

It Wasn't Just Russians; Trump and Cronies Stole from Us, Spied on Us, and Tried to Manipulate the Election

This news is so shocking that I am speechless:  You must read this.  Consultants for Trump Misused Facebook Data of Millions

And this: Cambridge Analytica Talked Business With Russian Oil Company

The only cheerful notes in all this are (1)that their candidates don't seem to win (Trump lost the popular vote by three million) and (2)they apparently haven't intruded into the 2018 campaign. 

At least not yet. At least not that we know of.

Let's treat this as an enraging thing that will make us work all the harder to win in November.  

And let's find a way to haul Facebook to the woodshed.

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

St. Patrick, the Pa 18th District and Great Good News

Good news from Pennsylvania's 18th District. Hurrah! The Democrat won, showing how unpopular Trump and his "agenda" are.

Oops. No hurrah? Nobody's cheering? Nobody's cheering up! 

Everybody I've encountered on this "day after" seems still mired in fear and loathing. What good are miracles if people won't lift their heads up and look? Mark Shields of PBS Newshour said last night much the same thing, that people are exhausted and depressed by Trump. (He's one of my Shields relatives.)

Rachel Maddow called the Democratic victory in Alabama a miracle when the reddest state in the union elected a Democrat to the Senate last December. I called it a miracle too. It was.

But it wasn't enough to cheer people up. Nor was the outcome in the statewide elections in Virginia that preceded it. 

And now Pennsylvania's18th isn't enough either. 

Donald Trump and the media have scared the beejeebers out of people.

I have to work day and night trying to keep all age levels of people from being scared. Trump and his shenanigans have them really frightened. They really believe he and the N. Korean hair guy are going to start a nuclear war, that the world is "very violent" now, that something has gone wrong with America as shown by Trump getting elected, that everybody is cheating, that the world is coming to an end because of global warming, that Soc. Sec. and Medicare are running out of money, that serious voter suppression is going on and getting worse, that the Democratic party is finished, and that Trump is taking over as a dictator.

None of this is true. Unless people really buy into it. Believing it will happen can make much of it come true. That's because believing things are inevitable suffocates resistance to them. Being hopeful isn't naive. It's immensely practical. After all, what do you have to lose by being hopeful? 

I came of age in the cynical 1950s of the Beatnik era.Then as now, liberals had to believe in the negative land of "drive on by, nothing good to see here". "Beatnik" stood for "beaten". I liked the Beatnik writings, the energy of "On the Road". And I liked the clothes. The look.

But I never bought into the "we are beaten" outlook. Nor the "God is dead" belief.

Before the 50s even ended we few, we hopeful few had started the civil rights movement, had done the first sit-in complete with being waterhosed, and were two minutes away from starting the environmental movement with Save The Bay. 

We went right on and saved the Bay, saved the redwoods, saved historic buildings and rid LA and all other American cities of smog. We got rid of segregation and ended the war in Vietnam. A few of us women stepped up before there was Women's Lib  and took what we wanted and pushed and pushed and pushed the envelope. We had stopped being polite, pretty, and passive (although 40 years later I was getting women college students who were still into the Three Ps). 

In our lifetime the poverty rate of the world has plummeted to near-zero. Illiteracy has virtually disappeared. Many terrible illnesses have been eradicated. Medical advances have been legion.There haven't been any world wars. Nations pull together and help each other out when disasters or famine strike. (They didn't help each other back in the "good old days".)

Genocide is no longer tolerated. 

Racism has been so suppressed that the last of its aged and ignorant adherents are fighting like the blue blazes to keep it alive. They will fail. In 2017 the last high school class in Texas graduated that had a white majority.

Diverse sexuality is widely accepted. Whose family doesn't have a homosexual or lesbian ? Now families know that people they love are ________ (fill in the blank) so they don't care any more about who is what. It's all in the family!

God was declared dead in the 1950s. I crept around still going to Mass while my intellectual friends sneered at me. Then their children got killed in a car crash or died of cancer. So I renamed God for their sake and called Him "Love". They needed comfort and would accept me saying things like "Love is stronger than death." Etc. Just no three-letter words, please. And I had to comfort them as best I could. Because that's what G-O-D means to me, i.e. help your fellow humans.

Before leaving this topic of what's better now than what used to be, I have two personal things. The founding of Israel is one. (America did that.) Never again will the Jews be without a place to go when the murderers come. The second thing that I find very cheery is that after 400 years of fighting and persecution, being burned to death en masse in our churches or deported to Australia, being denied education and basic rights, but fighting on and on until the Irish finally drove the English out of Ireland. Oh, yes. There was starvation too. A million dying of starvation, dead by the roadside, their faces green from eating grass.
        When my Jewish family had to flee Poland and my Irish great-grandparents had to run from the English soldiers for being Fenians, they came to America. America saved our lives. 
        Right now the Chinese are not killing 40 million of their own people in the name of Communism; the Russians aren't killing 20 million of their own people in the same questionable cause. They did that in the 20th century. And the millions in Southeast Asia aren't killing each other as in the 1970s. And we aren't killing them either although we are still enmired in the Arab world. 
        Latin America too has calmed down. For example, Argentines aren't "disappearing" by the thousands. ( Op-Ed Contributor The Death of a Genocide) Venezuela is the exception, suffering badly with lots of hunger. If we had a decent political party in charge in Washington, we'd be trying to help out. But we don't and we can't. Maybe that will change soon.
        We would want to help if we could. That's what keeps me a cheerful person in a society of long faces and "stress". Knowing that Americans have indeed done rotten things (e.g.slavery, genocide of the Native Americans,etc.) but that we want to do better, want to be helpful and kind. And we have been working on those principles for 200 years of being Americans, almost always trying to live up to out ideals, even the unwritten ones. Americans are the only country in the world with anything like our philanthropy, both public and private. And let's remember it was Bill Clinton, bad as he was in some ways, who worked on getting the English out of Ireland. 
So don't let Trump and the "bought and paid for" GOP majority in Congress get you down. We'll whip them in November. 

Just as we did Tuesday in Pennsylvania's 18th District. 

Meantime may Love bless you on your way and inspire you to love one another. That is the greatest riches in the world. I know because I have lived almost 82 years and seen everything. And trust me, things are good now, the best they have ever been in all of human history. Check that out. It's true. And things will get even better. 

Because you are here to make it happen. 


Sunday, March 4, 2018

Fasten Your Seat Belts...We're in for a Very Bad Ride with Trump

He knocked a big chunk off the Dow by threatening tariffs and a trade war.

He's scared the world by threatening nuclear war with North Korea.

All of his family and friends have left him increasingly alone in the White House.

He's reported as raging and "coming unglued".

And Mueller is closing in on him rapidly.

Will impeachment come in time?

‘Pure madness’: Dark days inside the White House as Trump shocks and rages