Aug 212017
 

I’m hurrying to get this posted to give God time to respond to the prayer in today’s cartoon.  I’ll publish the lead article this afternoon.  I’m so ready for my shower!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 4:31 (average 6:24).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (MoveOn Channel): Resistance Summer Cookout

 

Kudos! Not all of us can do the same things, but we must all do what we can to RESIST!!

From Washington Post: A frantic search continued Monday for 10 sailors missing after a collision between a U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer and an oil tanker three times its size off Singapore.

Meanwhile, The U.S. Navy pushed ahead with investigations into the “the facts and circumstances” of the collision involving the USS John S. McCain — the second such incident between a U.S. warship and commercial vessel in the Pacific region this summer.

The John S. McCain arrived at the Changi Naval Base in Singapore, and photos showed a large hole in its side at the waterline. More than 14 hours after the collision, there had been no word of any progress with the hunt for the missing sailors.

Thoughts and prayers for the injured and families of the dead sailors. Could Republican incompetence be trickling down to Captains so fast? RESIST!!

From YouTube (Media Matters Channel): Trump defends neo-Nazis, as seen previously On Fox News

 

Since all the hate Trump spewed Tuesday came directly from Religious Reichsministry of Propaganda, Faux Noise, it is clear that hate, Nazism, racism, and white supremacy are not just Trump problems. They are Republican problems. RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0821Cartoon

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Fuhrer Equals Failure

 Posted by at 1:38 pm  Politics
Aug 202017
 

The New York Times, aka the Gray Lady, tends to be very balanced in it’s editorial positions, often so much so that they have drawn criticism from me for presenting Republican lies with the same weight as progressives’ facts.  This morning I witnessed something I never thought I’d see: an absolute condemnation of not only a [p]Resident, but also, the leadership of both the House and Senate in an editorial.

0820Trump

With each day, President Trump offers fresh proof that he is failing the office that Americans entrusted to him. The rolling disaster of his presidency accelerated downhill last week with a news conference on Tuesday at which he seemed determined to sow racial strife in a nation desperate for a unifying vision.

Since the 1930s it has not typically been a challenge for an American leader to denounce Nazism. But there is nothing typical about this president; urged by some of his advisers and family members to summon the majesty and moral authority of the presidency to heal the wounds of last weekend’s neo-Nazi violence in Charlottesville, to put the good of the country before personal pique, he chose instead to deliver a defense of white supremacists that raised as never before profound doubts about his moral compass, his grasp of the obligations of his office and his fitness to occupy it.

This, in essence, is where we are now: a nation led by a prince of discord who seems divorced from decency and common sense. The alarm bells were loud and swift. Five members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff delivered a rare rebuke, condemning race-based extremism in the military and the nation. Foreign leaders, from Secretary General António Guterres of the United Nations to Prime Minister Theresa May of Britain, condemned intolerance and a failure of leadership in the White House.

Of all the many complaints and condemnations, the strongest came from Mr. Trump’s putative allies in the business community, a glittering who’s who of financial and corporate leaders who began resigning from two White House advisory councils early last week, ultimately forcing the president to dissolve both panels in order to spare himself the humiliation of further corporate desertions. The White House ultimately abandoned a third advisory council, on infrastructure, an area where Mr. Trump had hoped to fulfill at least one of his campaign promises to create jobs… [emphasis added]

From <NY Times>

I strongly recommend that you click through and read this editorial in its entirety.  You may never see anything like this again!

RESIST!!

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Aug 202017
 

It’s a very unusual Sunday, because normally, Wendy would be finishing up, and I’d be a perfumed Puddy Tat.  I expect she will leave her country music festival in Southern Oregon late this afternoon, and will not be coming, until after she finishes work tomorrow.  Therefore, I’m issuing an Air Quality Alert for a 500 mile radius.  We’re moving into another heat wave, and it was so muggy last night that I slept very poorly.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 2:50 (average 5:03).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Religious Ecstasy:

0819Broncos33-49ers14

In truth, I was not at all satisfied with the Bronco offence.  Their defense was outstanding, and the 49ers did not play up to their potential.

Short Takes:

From YouTube (Funny or Die Channel): The Ballad Of General Robert E. Lee’s Statue

 

Amen! RESIST!!

From Daily Kos: Just a quick note here:  I never liked Arnold Schwarzenegger.  Didn’t care for his movies, his celebrity schtick, his time as California governor, but this video addressing Trump, racism, Nazism, white supremacy, etc. gave me chills.

 

Amen! RESIST!!

From Newsweek: President Donald Trump and First Lady Melania Trump announced Saturday morning that they would not be attending the Kennedy Center Honors celebrations scheduled for this December. The ceremonial weekend, due to include a State Department dinner and gala, honors performing arts figures that have changed American culture. Typically, the people being honored sit next to the president and first lady, according to Rolling Stone.

Not this year.

"The President and First Lady have decided not to participate in this year’s activities to allow the honorees to celebrate without any political distraction," White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said in a news release. "First Lady Melania Trump, along with her husband President Donald J. Trump, extend their sincerest congratulations and well wishes to all of this year’s award recipients for their many accomplishments."

If I was being honored, and he were attending, I would boycott. So would most artists, and the Fuhrer is too cowardly to face the rejection.  RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0820Cartoon

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Aug 202017
 

Today has been one of those days.  I did something I have never done before — I slept in until 1450 hours!  My furbabes did not even wake me up even though they were hungry!  Within 40 minutes, I showered, dressed, fed the babes and was half way to the bakery to pick up some bread before going to my favourite eatery to say goodbye to one of the hostesses who was leaving.  She is a wonderful young lady who will be finishing high school this coming year (Bye Andy) and says she will be checking into the blog.  Fortunately our temperatures have moderated here in Metro Vancouver so it has been quite pleasant this past week.  Nights have been quite cool so I think that autumn is truly on the way.

Short Takes

The Independent Iceland is close to becoming the first country where no-one gives birth to a child with Down’s syndrome.

Pre-natal tests were introduced in the early 2000s, and the vast majority who receive a positive test have terminated their pregnancy.

While the tests are optional, all expectant mothers are informed about their availability, and up to 85 per cent choose to take it.

It’s called the Combination Test, and uses ultrasound and blood tests – as well as factoring in the mother’s age.
This determines whether the foetus will have a chromosome abnormality, the most common of which results in Down’s syndrome.

The law in Iceland allows for abortion after 16 weeks if the foetus has a deformity, and Down’s syndrome is included in this category.

There is another video at the beginning of the article which I would recommend watching only after reading the article and watching the above video.  It is from Faux Noise (need I say more?) and is an interview with Tony Perkins (now I know I need not say more!).  To be clear, Iceland does not have a cure for downs syndrome, a genetic condition.  What they do have is a different way of looking at abortion than in the US.  As the Icelandic counsellor said: 

“We ended a possible life that may have had a huge complication… preventing suffering for the child and for the family. And I think that is more right than seeing it as a murder — that’s so black and white.”

“Life isn’t black and white. Life is grey.”

Personally, I am closer to the Icelandic view than the American view.  I believe it is up to each woman to decide what is right for her, and make that decision in consultation with her partner and her doctor. 

CBC — Around 4,000 people showed up at Vancouver City Hall to protest against a far-right rally on Saturday afternoon.

Tensions rose briefly as protesters from opposing sides began yelling at each other, but Vancouver police quickly escorted several far-right demonstrators away from the crowd. One protester was in handcuffs.  …

                                   Thousands showed up to protest an anti-Islam rally planned for Saturday afternoon at Vancouver City Hall. (Tina Lovgreen/CBC)

Plans for the far-right demonstration began circulating on social media earlier in the week, not long after a deadly white nationalist march in Charlottesville, Va.

According to a Facebook page for the event, the rally is protesting Islam and the Canadian government’s immigration policies. The page is no longer live, but the demonstration was expected to begin around 2 p.m. PT.

By 3 p.m., a handful of far-right protesters appeared to have gathered. They held confederate flags and the “alt-right” symbols for Pepe and Kekistan. One wore a shirt in support of U.S. President Donald Trump.  …

Rowe-Codner said the coalition saw some pushback about the rally earlier in the week, and not just from the far-right.
“A lot of people [who lean left and central] are saying, maybe if you ignore this situation they’ll go away … But there are a lot of people and communities out there that face white supremacy and who can’t ignore it,” she said.

Ignoring the problem is the same as silence.  Silence is consent and THAT is just plain unacceptable!  I was very happy to see the numbers in attendance.  I had wanted to go but had another commitment.  Quite clearly, Charlottesville is having its effects felt far and wide.  It encourages me to see more people coming out in support of diversity than those showing up in support of a closed society.

AlterNet —  Felix Sater, one of Donald Trump’s shadiest former business partners, is reportedly preparing for prison time — and he says the president will be joining him behind bars.

Sources told The Spectator‘s Paul Wood that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s deep dive into Trump’s business practices may be yielding results.

Trump recently made remarks that could point to a money laundering scheme, Wood reported.

Sater, who has a long history of legal troubles and cooperating with law enforcement, was one of the major players responsible to for selling Trump’s condos to the Russians.

And according to Wood’s sources, Sater may have already flipped and given prosecutors the evidence they need to make a case against Trump.

For several weeks there have been rumours that Sater is ready to rat again, agreeing to help Mueller. ‘He has told family and friends he knows he and POTUS are going to prison,’ someone talking to Mueller’s investigators informed me.

Sater hinted in an interview earlier this month that he may cooperating with both Mueller’s investigation and congressional probes of Trump.

Read through to get an idea of a possible timeline.  If Sater’s timeline is correct, there could be a change in the leadership in the US before too long.  Of course, due process must playout.

CBC — Thousands of people took to the streets of Boston on Saturday to protest hate speech a week after a woman was killed at a Virginia white-supremacist demonstration, and their shouts drowned out the “Free Speech” rally that sparked the counter-protest.

Organizers of the rally had invited several far-right speakers, who were confined to a small pen that police set up in the historic Boston Common park to keep the two sides separate.

Police estimate that as many as 40,000 people packed into the streets around Boston Common.  …

On Saturday, Trump on Twitter praised the Boston protesters.
“I want to applaud the many protestors in Boston who are speaking out against bigotry and hate. Our country will soon come together as one!” Trump tweeted.

Boston was peaceful this weekend as a “free speech” rally mostly fizzled from poor planning, and a larger, louder counter protest in support of diversity.  Charlottesville this was not, thankfully!  However Trump’s response was in direct contrast to his response to the Charlottesville riot.  Where he talked in support of white nationalists in Charlottesville, he applauded those that spoke out against bigotry and hate in Boston.  He is at odds with himself but I am inclined to believe that his response to Charlottesville is his true nature.

CBC — Meike Muzzi is not dressed for travel.

Hospital bracelets in all three primary colours encircle her wrinkled right forearm, a gold bangle on the left.

But she says she’s ready for today’s trip — the promise of an escape from the Toronto palliative care ward in which she’s spent the past five weeks waiting to die.

David Parker is there to fulfil that promise with the help of his virtual reality goggles.

“What you’ve brought me so far has been beautiful,” Muzzi says, settling the soft black material of the goggles into the creases around her eyes.

The pair has already travelled together through the plains of Africa. And Muzzi reminds her guest that she would have liked to linger longer with the elephants.

Parker already knows this.

He listens to her stories, interviewing Muzzi and all the patients he visits at Bridgepoint Health in Riverdale, so he can store the information away and use it to help them revisit the moments of particular meaning in their lives.

Parker’s idea to offer virtual reality therapy began at Christmas.

The IT consultant received the headset as a gift. He first used them to take his wife’s grandmother to Venice, gliding through the canals on a gondola. Then he realized he could offer the same experience to those in hospice or having long-term hospital stays.

That idea has bloomed into both a pilot project at Bridgepoint and a passion project for Parker. Right now he donates his time and the equipment, but says that — even though he runs a creative agency — he can see this becoming his life’s work.

One of the things that I learned while I looked after my mother was that quality of life is most important.  Quantity means nothing if there is no quality.  And what makes quality often depends on the person and their situation.  For my mother, it was sitting quietly as I brush her hair for hours.  For Muzzi, it is travelling and seeing things that gave her joy.  Click through for the rest of the story and watch the short video of what Muzzi was viewing.  Unfortunately, I could not embed the video properly so that you could see it all.

My Universe

 

 

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Bill Maher from 8/18

 Posted by at 1:56 pm  Politics
Aug 192017
 

It’s that time of week again, and I’m happy to share three excellent video clips and one so-so clip from Bill’s show last night.  Enjoy!!

Monologue: Trump’s New Low

 

"There was violence on both sides in WWII, and we were still the good guys!" Love it! Trump sunk low enough to dry up a Russian hooker!

Al Franken, Giant of the Senate

 

If, as Al suggests, there are Republicans willing to work in ways that benefit the American people, I encourage cooperating with them on those items, ONLY. However, I’ll believe it, when I see it.

Liberal Monuments

 

Trump would love the statue of him, but all they would really need to piss off Republicans is a statue of Hillary.

New Rule: When Bipartisanship Goes Wrong

 

This was not one of his better efforts, but I agree that fat shaming is OK, when it’s fat between Republicans’ ears.

OK!  Recess is over!

RESIST!!

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Rachel on Bannon

 Posted by at 1:55 pm  Politics
Aug 192017
 

Yesterday we learned that Steve Bannon, Trumps touchstone on all things Nazi, got the boot, apparently because he wanted more attention than his Fuhrer could stomach sharing.  I’ve been trying to learn more about the situation and what to expect from now on, where both Bannon and Trump are concerned.  I learned more from three segments on the Rachel Maddow Show, than from all other sources combined.  Here they are.

Bannon uniquely odd among Trump’s many weird staff choices

Rachel Maddow reviews some of Donald Trump’s weird staff picks, many of whom, it turns out, are united by a connection to Russia, but Steve Bannon, though also a weird choice, has a different explanation for how he got there.

 

Billionaire behind Trump, Bannon, Breitbart plans next move

Jane Mayer, staff writer for The New Yorker, talks with Rachel Maddow about the role of Robert Mercer in funding Donald Trump and Breitbart, and what he might do next with Steve Bannon out of the white House.

 

Bannon leaves Trump, takes important constituency with him

Michael Beschloss, NBC News presidential historian, talks with Rachel Maddow about Steve Bannon’s unusual role in the Trump White House, from his job title to "nationalist" constituency he commands that could seriously sap Trump’s base.

 

In short, Trump is still Trump, and none of his hate, greed, and sociopathic behavior will change one iota.  Bannon is still a Nazi with plans to deconstruct America in every way he can, and with virtually unlimited funding from Mercer, he may have even more influence, especially with the TEAbaggers.  We are no better off than before.

RESIST!!

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