Jul 272016
 

It is still hot and muggy! Today was up to 30 C and humidity over 70%.  At physio, I bike for a minimum of 20 minutes which really gets a sweat up with temperatures as high as they have been.  By the time I arrived home, I was ready for a cold shower.  The furbabes have basically abandonned me and are sleeping downstairs for much of the night.  Suppopsedly, temperatures are to go down through this long weekend, but I'll believe it when I feel it.  BTW TC, this Canadian long weekend was called a civic holiday across the country, but now, here in BC it is known as BC Day . . . just incase you are trying to add this to your calendar!

Short Takes

MSN.com — The U.N. weather agency says it suspects a 54-degree Celsius (129.2 Fahrenheit) temperature recorded in Kuwait has set a record for the eastern hemisphere.

A Kuwaiti man takes a shower to cool off 

YASSER AL-ZAYYAT/AFP/Getty Images A Kuwaiti man takes a shower to cool off

The World Meteorological Organization said Tuesday it is setting up a committee to look into whether the temperature recorded Thursday in Mitrabah, Kuwait, was a new high for the hemisphere and in Asia. WMO's Omar Baddour says it's "likely" to be an eastern hemisphere record.

Now that is beyond hot!  Would the climate change and global warming deniers, who in the US are predominently Republicans, still deny global warming?  Perhaps we should send them to Mitrabah, Kuwait without the benefit of air conditioning and then ask them if their stance has changed after a week of this heat.  I wouldn't be surprised if the cool looking water of this man's shower were actually warm water.

Alternet — Chris Ladd is a Texan in exile. After growing up in Beaumont and working for more than a decade in Houston, he moved to suburban Chicago, where he is a Republican precinct committeeman.

He has a day job that he loves in the software industry. In his free time he has written for David Frum’s blog, the Washington Times Communities, the Houston Chronicle, and the Huffington Post.

Back in Texas he interned at the Legislature, worked on numerous state and local Republican campaigns, and volunteered for a statewide PAC. Chris graduated from Beaumont’s Central High, earned a degree from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas (the Harvard of Williamson County) and received his JD from the University of Houston.

He recently posted the following:

Chairman Cuzzone:

We come together in political parties to magnify our influence. An organized representative institution can give weight to our will in ways we could not accomplish on our own. Working with others gives us power, but at the cost of constant, calculated compromise. No two people will agree on everything. There is no moral purity in politics.  …

With three decades invested in the Republican Party, there is a powerful temptation to shrug and soldier on. Despite the bold rhetoric, we all know Trump will lose. Why throw away a great personal investment over one bad nominee? Trump is not merely a poor candidate, but an indictment of our character. Preserving a party is not a morally defensible goal if that party has lost its legitimacy.

Read Chris Ladd's entire letter HEREIt is very interesting and makes good points that don't show up in the Alternet article.  Not only is it an indictment of Donald Trump, but also of the Republican Party.  How many more Republicans will follow their conscience and step away from what the party has become?

CBC — Some of Canada's banks must stress test their ability to withstand a 50 per cent drop in housing prices in Metro Vancouver area and a 40 per cent drop in the Greater Toronto Area, the country's banking regulator says.

The Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions also said Tuesday that the banks must all test for a 30 per cent downturn in valuations for all other areas of the country.

The OSFI said the test doesn't apply to the Big Six banks and HSBC. An OSFI spokesperson said the regulator and the Bank of Canada work together to conduct "regular macro" stress tests on the Big Six banks, which also do their own internal testing.

One of the major differences between the US and Canada is the strength of banking regulation.  IMO, Canada has a more robust regulatory regime.  It isn't perfect by any stretch of the imagination, however it did help avert a big crisis such as the US housing meltdown that occurred a few years ago.  But, housing prices in the two biggest markets, Metro Vancouver and Greater Toronto Area , have exploded over the past few years, such that ordinary people are almost unable to purchase a home. From CKNW.com:

"The benchmark price for a detached home in April in Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley hit just over $1.4 million — which is a 30.1% increase over 2015.

The MLS Home Price Index composite benchmark price for all residential properties in Metro Vancouver is currently $844,800, a 25.3% increase compared to April 2015."

Because of this wild market, OSFI has mandated stress tests for all deposit and lending institutions.  Basically, what happens to the viability and stability of these institutions if there is a 30% or 50% market correction?  The stress tests are to help gage the affect of these anticipated corrections.  This whole issue is more than "just about housing prices".

There are also other factors in the mix for the "hot" housing market.  In British Columbia, the provincial government has finally taken action now that it has realised this a hot topic and there is an election next year.  Their 15% property purchase surcharge on foreign buyers is their attempt to address the problem.  However, this misses those who are resident in Canada already but hold very large deposits off shore.  Those people bring the cash in for the purchase, but the buyer is deemed a resident so not subject to the new tax.  Also, there are purchasers who are buying and then reselling before the first sale completes, at greatly inflated prices.  Some of this was being orchestrated by realtors.  Because the real estate boards were self governing, this aspect likewise exploded.  The boards in BC are now regulated by the government hoping to eliminate this activity.  Where it had been fairly easy to get a real estate license, no longer.  The provincial government is late to the party, but OSFI, a federal agency is trying to protect the overall health of the banking sector.

As a matter of disclosure, I was a senior lending manager in Metro Vancouver primarily involved in mortgage financing with several of the big 6 banks and HSBC.  When Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp (CMHC), a federal crown corporation created in 1946, introduced lower down payment criteria years ago, I was aghast because I could see problems.  Now that threshold has been restored.  If you want to see what CMHC does, go to CMHC (I set the link to English — all federal government websites are in French and English).  I hope I have not bored everyone with my commentary but as a 40+ year banker, 65% of it spent in mortgage financing, I become a little passionate.  Likewise, I believe in everybody having a reasonable chance to own their own home, which is why CMHC was originally created.

Politico — The nominee of the Republican Party — the party that takes credit for winning the Cold War — on Wednesday appeared to align himself with Russia over his Democratic opponent, in remarks that suggested to many he was urging Moscow to interfere in a U.S. election.

That break with longstanding bipartisan policy toward dealing with Russia, or any foreign nation, for that matter, succeeded in getting him the lion’s share of the media spotlight as Wednesday evening programming kicked off for rival Hillary Clinton’s Democratic National Convention. But it was a leap few fellow Republicans were ready to make — with some in the party suggesting it smacked of “treason.”

The backlash began immediately after Trump’s extended riff on Russia at a Wednesday morning press conference, in which he called for Russia to “find” and release 30,000 emails deleted from Clinton’s private email server. Trump went on to promise a better relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin if elected president, saying he’d “look at” easing sanctions and recognizing Russia’s annexation of Ukraine’s Crimean Peninsula—something at odds with current U.S. policy–but most of the focus came back to the emails.  …

“It’s bad enough he doesn’t understand the gravity of what he said, but that he’s giving encouragement to a hostile foreign power is unconscionable,” Nichols said. “I don’t think he’s joking. He doubled down on it. Once off the cuff, it’s a joke. Twice, it’s policy.”

How long are Republicans going to wait to whittle Drumpf down to size?  I hope his "dyed in the wool" supporters pay attention to this issue.  Drumpf has taken things way to far such that it is a national security problem.  Wouldn't it be great if he was charged with treason,  I have read a number of other pieces on this matter and on Drumpf's connections.  One article (I think Daily Kos) mentioned that American banks won't touch Drumpf and that he went to some Russian oligarchs for financing.  True or not?  But the specter of such and his failure to make his taxes public are only fueling the fire which with any luck will turn into a conflagration that will consume the Republican Party and send it into the dustbin of history.

My Universe — This is my favourite video.  Meet Kevin Richardson, lion whisperer, with one of his wild lionesses.  You can see more at http://www.lionwhisperer.co.za/

 

 

 

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Jul 272016
 

0727fptp

Let me begin by saying that the last thing I want to do here is criticize or impugn Jill Stein.  On the issues I agree more with her than I ever have with any other Presidential candidate, except Bernie Sanders.  She is honest, progressive, egalitarian, and environmentally conscious.  So, now that Bernie has left the race, why not vote for Jill Stein?  I’ll tell you why not.

The reason not to vote for Jill is the problems built in to First Fast the Post voting.

As much as I like Jill, a vote for her, when she has zero chance of winning, serves only to increase the likelihood of a Donald Trump win.  I don’t like it, but I’m not so head-in-the-clouds that I can’t see that voting for an imperfect Democrat is the only defense against the election of a true monster.  So instead pursuing the self-defeating activity of helping Trump, we need to wait until after this election and work to change the system, state by state.  Alternative Voting is a better way.

(Both videos come from cgpgrey.com.  I recommend you check it out.)

If Alternative Voting were in place, my first choice would be Bernie (write in), my second would be Jill, and my third would be Hillary.  It would make it possible to vote our conscience without contributing to the advent of national socialism.  In the long run, that would be the best thing for the Green party too.

In the US, it’s also called Ranked Choice Voting.

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Jul 272016
 

Today is a grocery delivery day, so I took my nap in the morning to be up when they arrive.  The hot muggy weather continues unabated.  I’m running late because of a snafu with my Outlook Calendar.  I added Canadian Holidays, and there are so damn many of them that they cause some of my real appointments to be hidden in the month view. There is on obvious way to remove them.  ARGH!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:12 (average 4:56).  To do it, click here. How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Snopes.com: …Clinton announced that Wasserman Schultz had subsequently "agreed to serve as honorary chair of [the Clinton] campaign’s 50-state program to gain ground and elect Democrats in every part of the country," adding that the former chair would "continue to serve as a surrogate for my campaign nationally"…

…This announcement was received by many as meaning that Schultz had been "promoted" to a position of "running the Hillary Clinton campaign," but others noted that the gesture was merely a symbolic courtesy:

Republicans and Regressives don’t seem to understand what honorary means, as so many are distorting it wildly. Other that no money, no staff and no power, it’s a great job.  It was intended only to give DWS the appearance of a normal exit.

From NY Times: American intelligence agencies have told the White House they now have “high confidence” that the Russian government was behind the theft of emails and documents from the Democratic National Committee, according to federal officials who have been briefed on the evidence…

…The emails were released by WikiLeaks, whose founder, Julian Assange, has made it clear that he hoped to harm Hillary Clinton’s chances of winning the presidency. It is unclear how the documents made their way to the group. But a large sampling was published before the WikiLeaks release by several news organizations and someone who called himself “Guccifer 2.0,” who investigators now believe was an agent of the G.R.U., Russia’s military intelligence service.

I’m not sure where, but I commented somewhere (probably here) that I would not take the story of the DNC emails seriously, until I had more confirmation than just the Regressive echo chamber sites. Now the story is confirmed, and as I have said, DWS should be driven from the party. However, it should be noted that Hillary Clinton has been requesting that DWS be removed for over a year, but Obama wanted to avoid the controversy. The second thing is that the purpose of the leak seems to be to discredit Hillary, even though there is no evidence to support any involvement by her in DWS’ unethical practices. Therefore I speculate that Donald Trump (R-Hades) and Vladimir Putin (R-RU) may have cooperated.

From PoliticusUSA: “I want to thank you for standing with us and supporting us, and we’d like to leave with you what God has given us: strength, love and peace,” Sybrina Fulton, mother of Trayvon Martin, said in a moment of profound emotion Tuesday night, during the second session of the DNC.

“This isn’t about being politically correct. This is about saving our children,” Fulton said earlier, making it clear that asking for justice and saving lives is not asking people to be “politically correct”.

Fulton was speaking as a member of Mothers of the Movement, a group of women who lost their children due to gun violence or police brutality. They banded together at Hillary Clinton’s suggestion, in order to protect black Americans and reform our criminal justice system.

“You don’t stop being a mom when your child dies,” the mother of Jordan Davis said. Lucy McBath continued, “I lived in fear my son would die like this. I even warned him that because he was a young, black man he would meet people who didn’t value his life.”

“I am still Jordan Davis’s mother. His life ended the day he was shot and killed for playing loud music. But my job as his mother didn’t.”

Saying that Hillary Clinton invited the mothers to become a part of the solution, McBath said, “We’re going to keep building a future where police officers and communities of color work together in mutual respect to keep children like Jordan safe. Because the majority of police officers are good people doing a good job.”

Hear that? There was no demonizing of police.

The way those women told their stories in a loving, non-condemnatory way brought tears to my eyes.  They certainly were a contrast to the way in which Republican racists whooped and hollered in bloodthirsty glee to a speakers announcement that the all the cops that killed Freddie Gray had gotten off.

Cartoon:

0727Cartoon

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Jul 262016
 

0726Michelle

All things considered the Democratic National Convention kicked off to a positive start, despite some poorly coordinated attempts at disruption by regressives, who were acting in opposition to Bernie;s wishes and request.  The night would down to the three main speakers: Michelle Obama, Elizabeth Warren, and Bernie Sanders.  Each of them outperformed all the speakers at the Republican Hate Festival last week.

First was Michelle.

My first response was, "I sure feel sorry for the person who has to follow that!"  Then I remembered why I didn’t have to worry.  It was Elizabeth Warren.

Many wanted Liz to be chosen for VP.  I did not.  The job of the VP is to go ONLY wherever told to go, to do ONLY whatever told to do, to say ONLY whatever told to say, and NOT to make waves.  I just don’t want that kind of a muzzle put on Liz!  At last Bernie spoke.

Bernie made it clear that he does not intend to give Hillary the nomination by unanimous consent, as she did for Obama in 2008.  I’ve seen some commentators suggest that Bernie is hurting party unity by not doing so.  I disagree.  Bernie and his supporters achieved a stellar accomplishment to come as close as they did, and they have earned the right to show the world just how close they came.  Casting their votes at the convention should also give his supporters closure.  Then those that truly are his supporters will follow his lead in good conscience and throw their support behind Hillary.  Those that do not, never were his supporters, with the rare exceptions of those few, who are also long term active members of another party and are returning there.

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Jul 262016
 

Yesterday’s appointment with my Prosthetist went, well.  George seems more stable and my knee is healing.  When I returned home, I tackled that insurance snafu.  The fifth person to whom I spoke was the Billing Manager of the Radiation Oncologist, whose bill had been denied.  He said that they do have an approved referral, that there must be an error in the paperwork, and that he will get it approved.  That was almost painless.  Then I had to attend a community meeting  for Fair Market residents in my building.  And then I watched the convention.  That made George very nervous, and I has to assure him that this one is completely different from Rump Dump and his Rectumites.  Other than my normal chores, I have no more appointments this week.  That’s a good thing because it’s very hot and muggy.  Temperatures in the high 80°s and low 90°s are forecast for the next ten days and the humidity is sitting at 77%.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:50 (average 5:40).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Raw Story: [B]ernie Sanders fired up his supporters at the Democratic National Convention on Monday afternoon — until he mentioned the need to elect Hillary Clinton.

While Sanders drew cheers when he trashed Donald Trump during his address, the audience erupted into boos when he said that “we have got to elect Hillary Clinton and Tim Kaine.”

 

How disgusting! If those regressives truly backed Bernie, they would follow his lead, not boo him for telling the truth. Shame on those hypocrites!

From YouTube (MoveOn): Party of Trump: David Duke, KKK and White Supremacy

Barf Bag Alert!!

 

What’s the different between the GOP and KKK? Anymore, not a damn thing!!

From Salon.com: Comedian Sarah Silverman took the stage at the Democratic National Convention and announced that she “feels the Bern — but not to worry, she put some cream on it.” She later attacked those who, unlike her, refused to recognize that they’d be betraying what Sanders stood for if they don’t support Clinton.

Clearly frustrated by the chorus of boos and shouts from Sanders supporters, Silverman snapped: “Can I just say to the ‘Bernie or Bust’ people — you’re being ridiculous.”

 

That may be the best line to date.

From Miami Herald: After quitting her national Democratic Party leadership role amid furor over thousands of leaked emails, U.S. Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz now faces the political battle of her lifetime back home in South Florida.

Wasserman Schultz resigned as Democratic National Committee chairwoman Sunday, strengthening the hand of her primary opponent, Tim Canova — who saw a huge fundraising boost and national media attention following her decision.

While the Weston congresswoman spent Monday morning getting heckled by protesters in Philadelphia at her first public appearance since her resignation, Canova was in the district giving interviews to local TV stations, Univision and The Daily Beast — and meeting with constituents.

In light of recent events, I fully endorse Tim Canova for Congress, and feel we should urge Jo Biden to cancel his planned fundraising event on behalf of Wasserman Schultz.  I trust the petition mavens among you will find the links for that.  There should be no place in the Democratic Party for Debbie Wasserman Schultz.

Cartoon:

0726Cartoon

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Jul 252016
 

Before we leave the Trump Convention in the dustbin, and since he so prominetly displayed his family (no one else wanted to show up … well, other than Ted Cruz) I thought you might like to see the OTHER side of the Trumps.

Daddy Dearest

Trump_Daughter-Ivanka_Creepy_01

Yeah, Trump  really said this:

When asked how he would react if Ivanka, a former teen model, posed for Playboy, Trump replied, "It would be really disappointing — not really — but it would depend on what's inside the magazine."

He added: "I don't think Ivanka would do that, although she does have a very nice figure. I've said if Ivanka weren't my daughter, perhaps I'd be dating her."

And THAT'S how you lock up the Southern vote.

But that was NOT the only time

During the 1997 Miss Teen USA pageant, he sat in the audience as his teenage daughter, Ivanka, helped to host the event from onstage. He turned to Brook Antoinette Mahealani Lee, Miss Universe at the time, and asked for her opinion of his daughter’s body.

“ ‘Don’t you think my daughter’s hot? She’s hot, right?’ ” Ms. Lee recalled him saying. ‘I was like, ‘Really?’ That’s just weird. She was 16. That’s creepy.”

Trump_Daughter-Ivanka_Creepy_02

NOR was it the last time.  I noticed what can only be charitably called "CREEPY" interaction after Ivanka's speech on Thuirsday introducing her father:

Trump_Pats-Daughter-Butt-Ass_Ivanka

And from a different viewpoint:

 

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Jul 252016
 

Almost every week, Republicans join a competition to see who can say the most outlandish things, and in the process, they push the envelope on just how awful InsaniTEA can become.  I trust that you will believe it, when I tell you that last week was no exception.  There is no doubt that the RNC has brought out the crazies!

Alternet — Thursday was a night of troubled sleep throughout the land. In his long-awaited keynote speech, Republican nominee Donald Trump managed not just to confirm all of our worst fears about him, but to amplify them, make them 10 times darker and bigger, make them huuuuuuge! He got the fear job done. Better than anyone in the entire history of the country has gotten it done!

Let us just review what an amazing accomplishment this was. Rudy Giuliani kicked things off, commanding everyone to be much more terrified about crime, ISIS immigration and Black Lives Matter. Chris Christie roused the crowds with chants of “lock her up,” and “guilty as charged!” Ted Cruz delivered his same lizard-like stump speech, the one everyone assumed they’d be spared after he dropped out of the race. The accumulating horror was enhanced by the realization that the slick-backed Trump sons have themselves acquired a taste for politics and now feel qualified to bash teachers and environmental regulations, celebrate gun culture and espouse other tired conservative talking points.

Trump_Face_Facial-ExpressionS

Thanks to Nameless for providing the picture.

But Trump took the crown! He patted his Ivanka on the butt, and then surpassed them all in 75 minutes of continuous bellowing horribleness. The moon was nearly full. A smoldering heat dome would come to blanket much of the country. Darkness descended. And the next day, the mainstream media sunnily gave him credit for his shout-out to the LGBTQ community.

2. Rep. Steve King doesn’t even bother to disguise his racism.

It’s very possible that Iowa rep Steve King has zero concept of white supremacy. It is simply the water in which this fish swims in. So perhaps it should not have been too much of a surprise this week when the rabid anti-immigrationist, tea partying congressman just came out and said during a live appearance on MSNBC that white people have basically been superior to all others throughout history and invented everything worthwhile.

His comments came about after host Chris Hayes asked a question about the racial makeup of the GOP.

Charles Pierce of Esquire was there and said: “If you’re really optimistic, you can say this was the last time that old white people would command the Republican Party’s attention, its platform, its public face.”

That did not sit well with King. “This whole ‘old white people’ business does get a little tired, Charlie,” he said, all buddy buddy. “I’d ask you to go back through history and figure out where are these contributions that have been made by these other categories of people that you are talking about? Where did any other subgroup of people contribute more to civilization?”

Co-panelists were stunned. Hayes asked for clarification. Did he mean what it sounded like he just said?

He did.

We know this because, one, he said it really clearly, and two, he doubled down on his assertion of the superiority of the white European “subgroup” the next day. The man who tried to block Harriet Tubman from being on the $20 bill recently was 100 percent on-message for his party, as you'll see if you read on.

Republicans are so good at the fear game.  This go around, Drumpf and others have whipped up a frenzie of fear which is unfortunate because they are turning neighbour against neighbour.  Back in November 2015, according to Crooks and Liars, Trump said

“The real greatest resource is all of you, because you have all those eyes and you see what’s happening,” he told listeners in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

“People move into a house a block down the road, you know who’s going in,” Trump continued. "You can see and you report them to the local police.

“You’re pretty smart, right?” he asked his audience. "We know if there’s something going on, report them. Most likely you’ll be wrong, but that’s OK.

And of course, Steve "Cantaloupe Calves" King of Iowa is doing his best to increase fear and racism.  This is the second of five appalling right wing moments this past week.  Click through for the others.

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Jul 252016
 

It was very hot and muggy today — 30 C (86 F) — so I tried to stay quiet in some air conditioning for as long as possible, then home to the heat.  It is 23:00 hours and the temperature is still 22 C (72 F) with high humidity.  This week will be busy as I have physio, pastoral care calls to make, teaching and 2 medical appointments.  I hope it doesn't stay hot and humid this week.  Later — My wi-fi connection shut down before I could finish and post last night so this is 10 hours late in getting up.

Short Takes

Politicususa — Donald Trump is facing a new complaint that his use of the Trump Organization to do his campaign work is a violation of federal law.

The Democratic Coalition Against Trump announced their FEC complaint against the GOP nominee in a statement:

This morning the Democratic Coalition Against Trump filed a federal campaign complaint against Donald Trump’s Presidential campaign with the Federal Elections Commission. The complaint alleges five violations including illegally accepting direct corporate contributions, accepting services from a volunteer that were actually compensated, use of the Trump corporate name or trademark to facilitate campaign contributions, illegal use of corporate facilities by a campaign volunteer, and knowingly allowing volunteers to exceed the transportation expense limit.

The question is, will the FEC recognise this as the violation it is, or will it be bullied by Trump?  If I recall correctly, the Fartfuhrer of Fitzwalkerstan, Scott Walker, faced similar charges.

CBC — It is difficult to imagine that a democratic system has ever existed without some amount of exaggeration, cynicism and frivolity. For that matter, politics should not exclusively be the domain of serious wonkery. Some amount of theatre is natural and useful. Generous amounts of humanity are welcome. Anger and conflict are inevitable.

But ideally a nation's politics would not be predominantly cynical and frivolous, would not be defined by its worst aspects. What excesses of rhetoric or action did occur would be corrected for. And, over time, the system would improve, not fall into disrepair or despair.

An untrusted or unserious system is perhaps ripe for revolt or abuse.  …

Trump is destroying the generally accepted norms of American politics, and expanding the parameters of what a politician could get away with saying in a way that will have lasting impact on the United States. That suggests our democracies are more fragile than we might otherwise appreciate.

Some say that Canada and the US are the same, few differences at all.  I see the two countries as being quite different with some commonalities.  In the article, my former Member of Parliament, James Moore, Conservative, was "asked about Trump's relevance to Canadian conservatives and offered two other observations. First, that Trump isn't a conservative. Second, that the Conservative Party learned in 2015 that conservatism needs to be matched with optimism."  Looking south, I certainly do not see the optimism of which Moore speaks.  What I see is more doom and gloom, outright fear, coming from Republicans.

Alternet — The GOP’s new big dog blew the whistle Thursday night for nearly an hour and a half and it was loud and shrill enough to reach the ears of every angry, resentful, disaffected white American. The tone was divisive, dark, dystopian and grim. Here was the alpha dog of the von Trump family, baying at a blood-red moon that the hills are alive with the sounds of menace. According to Republican presidential nominee Donald J. Trump, this land is rapidly becoming as bleak and dangerous as one of those twisted, vicious kingdoms in Game of Thrones, a place filled with violent crime and despair, a smoldering ruin overrun with foreigners out to take our jobs and terrorists bent on destroying our villages. It’s mourning in America. And only he can save us. This has been his message all year: I alone can fix it. Remember his tweet on Easter morning? “Another radical Islamic attack, this time in Pakistan, targeting Christian women & children. At least 67 dead,400 injured. I alone can solve."  …

But as Washington Post fact checkers Glenn Kessler and Michelle Ye Hee Lee noted: “The dark portrait of America that Donald J. Trump sketched… is a compendium of doomsday stats that fall apart upon close scrutiny. Numbers are taken out of context, data is manipulated, and sometimes the facts are wrong. “When facts are inconveniently positive — such as rising incomes and an unemployment rate under 5 percent — Trump simply declines to mention them.

Here is a video from the Washington Post fact checking Trump's Thursday evening convenmtion speech.  Click HERE to view video.  Unfortunately, I could not imbed it.  Elizabeth Warren commented to Stephen Colbert that she didn't think Democrats were taking Trump seriously enough and that he is a dangerous individual, especially when he is so divisive and hateful.  I was amused by some of his early words in his acceptance speech at the RNC: (full transcript from syracuse.com incase you want to scan it without having to listen to his voice)

"It is finally time for a straightforward assessment of the state of our nation. I will present the facts plainly and honestly. We cannot afford to be so politically correct anymore.

So if you want to hear the corporate spin, the carefully-crafted lies, and the media myths—the Democrats are holding their convention next week. But here, at our convention, there will be no lies. We will honor the American people with the truth, and nothing else."

When did Drumpf become acquainted with any truth?

VOTE BLUE ALL THE WAY DOWN THE LINE!

being all in for hillaryAll in with Hillary!

My Universe —

cat8Hi! How ya doin'!

52f180dc-7b40-4fb4-8928-2449da34548dCat trap working!

 

 

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Jul 252016
 

I hoped to have time for some short takes, but when I return from my Prosthetist, I have a medical mess to clean up.  Between my Ocular Oncologist, my Radiation Oncologist, and my substitute Primary Care doctor, they neglected to get the referral paperwork filled out for the Radiation Oncologist to make the plaque that was inserted behind my eye, so my claim was denied.  Now I have to figure out who needs to do what to correct their errors.  ARGH!!

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:03 (average 5:14).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Cartoon:

0725Cartoon

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Jul 242016
 

When I fist learned that Hillary has picked Tim Kaine for VP, my initial reaction was disappointment.  Then I asked myself why I was disappointed, and had to admit that I don’t really know anything about him, except that many Bernie supporters don’t like him.  So I decided to see what I can learn before I knee jerk.  The following piece was written by Krystal Ball, a Bernie Supporter from VA, who used to appear on MSNBC’s The Cycle.

0723TIM-KAINE

Like a lot of Virginians, I’ve had to chuckle a bit at the way Virginia Senator Tim Kaine has been portrayed since rising to the top of Secretary Clinton’s VP short list. Apparently, the gods of conventional wisdom have decided Kaine is a “boring,” “safe,” “centrist” pick whose “DINO” positions may make him anathema to the Sanders base. Oh really? Because I can assure you as a native Virginian, this caricature doesn’t at all fit the man I’ve watched over nearly 20 years. In fact, the consistent knock on him in every election in Virginia has been that he was too liberal! This was such an issue that when Kaine was elected Lieutenant Governor under Mark Warner in 2001, Warner used their first joint press conference to distance himself from the controversial, left-leaning Kaine. So before you allow the national media topline and Kaine’s status as a white Southern man to lull you into a quick judgment, here are a few things you should know about why this Bernie broad loves Tim Kaine.

Kaine is the son of a welder who graduated from a Jesuit high school, flew through University of Missouri and then landed at Harvard Law. While his classmates were hanging out in Cambridge fielding offers from big firms, Kaine took a year off to do mission work in Honduras where he worked with young boys growing up in brutal poverty. The year abroad left him fluent in Spanish and with a deep commitment to using his Harvard law degree for the public good. After law school he made good on his commitment to service and rather than cashing in on his degree, spent much of his legal career fighting against housing discrimination. Now you just tell me, does that sound like the bio of a chamber-backed, blue dog, corporate Dem?

Ahh but perhaps Kaine abandoned all his lofty principles in a quest for political power in a conservative Southern state! If that’s your concern, perhaps you should just ask the NRA how they feel about Tim Kaine. Here’s how his elections in Virginia typically go: the NRA gives him an F rating, fear mongers about how he’s going to take everyone’s guns, spends massively against him, and then Tim goes on to win anyway. Keep in mind, the NRA is literally headquartered in Virginia. If they are powerful anywhere they are powerful in the Old Dominion but that didn’t stop Kaine from signing an executive order following the Virginia Tech massacre to keep guns out of the hands of the mentally ill. It also didn’t stop him from pushing additional gun control measures as governor like eliminating the gun show loophole and it hasn’t stopped him as Senator from continuing to lead the charge for sensible rules like increased background checks. As someone who ran for Congress, in Virginia, I can tell you that perhaps the definition of political courage for a Southern Dem is willingness to buck the gun lobby. Tim Kaine has been unflinching.

Maybe though, Kaine was able to be bold on guns because he was right of center on everything else. Yeah, not so much. In Virginia, Kaine raised taxes, spearheaded efforts for universal pre-K, made Virginia the first Southern state to ban smoking in public places, and consistently opposed the death penalty. Let me repeat that last one. Tim Kaine consistently opposed the death penalty in a state that trails only Texas in number of executions. As governor, he bucked the prevailing law and order winds and vetoed eight different bills that would have expanded capital punishment. The issue was front and center in his gubernatorial race but he stuck to the Catholic values that have guided his life and never backed down… [emphasis added]

From <The Huffington Post>

In spite of his Catholic background, Planned Parenthood rates his voting record at 100%  Now, I’m not going to base my opinion of this man on one author, but Krystal is in a better position to know than any of the people I’ve heard denigrating him.  I urge you to click through for the rest.  Perhaps Tim Kaine may be a good choice after all.

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