Jun 092017
 

It has been a busy week and next week looks the same.  It rained most of yesterday and a bit last night, but today has been dry with some sunshine.  Earlier this week, Wendy said that she expected TC would go home Friday or Saturday.  So far, I think he is still in the hospital as he still has pain and did not outright say he was home.  However I know he is very relieved that the liver spots are benign.  Please say prayers or keep healing thoughts for TC front and centre.  I hope everyone has a good weekend.

Jigsaw Puzzle

Yesterday’s took me 3:32 (average 5:14).  To do it, click here.  How did you do? No, I'm not barkin' mad!

Today’s took me 4:27 (average 5:46).  To do it, click here.  How did you do? 

Short Takes

Politico — House Republicans on Thursday united to pass a comprehensive bill that would dismantle the landmark banking regulations enacted after the 2008 financial crisis.

The legislation, approved without a single Democratic vote, represents the GOP's opening salvo in the debate over easing the rules on the financial system, a move sparked by the election of President Donald Trump and Republican control of Congress. 

Hensarling argues that the economy and consumers would benefit from his vision in which market forces rather than government regulation would keep the financial system in check.

Among the bill's most controversial measures is the elimination of most of the powers of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the independent regulatory agency that is Democrats' crown jewel in Dodd-Frank.

The legislation would rename the weakened CFPB the Consumer Law Enforcement Agency and make it more beholden to Congress and the president. 

The bill would also repeal a pillar of Dodd-Frank that allows regulators to manage the failure of a major financial institution, replacing that power with an updated version of the bankruptcy code.

While people were distracted by the Comey testimony, Lyin' Ryan and the Republicans rammed through a piece of legislation designed to all but kill the CFPB.  Not good at all!

Raw Story — A former Republican congressman who voted to impeach former President Bill Clinton called out House Speaker Paul Ryan as a hypocrite.

Ryan argued Thursday that congressional Republicans would not be calling for the impeachment of a Democratic president accused of the same activity as President Donald Trump — but former representative Bob Inglis dismissed those claims as nonsense.

“You know this isn’t true,” Inglis tweeted to Ryan. “You know that you would be inquiring into impeachment if this were a D.”

There have been 2 attempts to impeach sitting presidents in modern times: Richard Nixon — the Judiciary Committee approved Articles of Impeachment in July 1974 but Nixon resigned in August 1974 before the whole House could vote on the impeachment; and Bill Clinton — the Judiciary Committee approved Articles of Impeachment in December 1998 but he was acquitted in the Senate.  I won't go into detail on the charges but both presidents were charged with obstruction of justice as well as other charges.  See Nixon charges here and Clinton charges here.  In my non legal mind, it is apparent that Drumpf has obstructed justice and I hope that Mueller's investigation will bear that out at the very least.  It is a long process which will hamper Drumpf to do his job effectively.

YouTube — What We Now Know From James Comey | The Resistance with Keith Olbermann | GQ              

As the days proceed, I am sure that Mueller's investigation will raise more questions and hopefully some answers.  Comey has not heard the end of the public testimony and I dare say there will be all manner of speculation about the closed session.  Truth win out!

The New Yorker — The White House was on lockdown Thursday morning after a television was hurled out of a window, the Secret Service reported.

The incident, which occurred shortly after 10 A.M. E.S.T., caught the attention of the Secret Service after agents heard the sound of smashing glass emanating from the Oval Office.

“The sound was consistent with that of a large object, such as a television set, being thrown through a closed window,” a Secret Service spokesman said.

The television, which crashed to the ground outside the Oval Office, injured no one, the Secret Service confirmed.

I think Andy is back to straight reporting again.  I can quite imagine that the pResident was really foaming at the mouth listening to Comey's testimony.  His staff tried to keep him away from Twitter, but when they could contain no more, he let loose with this tweet "Despite so many false statements and lies, total and complete vindication … and WOW, Comey is a leaker!" .  

My Universe

I particularly like #3. 

Reminds me of my Annie who is almost 9 years old now.

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Jun 062017
 

I have a meeting to go to shortly.  I am a member of the Family Council and a liaison to the Board of the care centre where my mum lived and the board is meeting tonight.  The Family Council meets next week.  Tomorrow is physio and teaching so there will likely be no Open Thread for tomorrow.  We have had no additional word from TC yet, but when we know, we will pass it on.  In the mean time, please keep TC in your thoughts and prayers.

Jig Zone Puzzle

Today’s took me 3:39 (average 5:52).  To do it, click here.  How did you do? Try not to get all wet with this one!

Short Takes

YouTube — If He Were Doing Any Other Job, Donald Trump Would Have Been Fired by Now | The Resistance | GQ  

I should think that Trump would understand this phrase: "You're fired!"  Or perhaps this one: "Go straight to jail.  Do not pass Go."

Resist and Persist!!!

The New Yorker — In a dramatic announcement from the White House Rose Garden on Thursday, Donald J. Trump pronounced the planet Earth a “loser” and vowed to make a better deal with a new planet.

“Earth is a terrible, very bad planet,” he told the White House press corps. “It’s maybe the worst planet in the solar system, and it’s far from the biggest.”

When asked which planet he would make a new deal with, Trump offered few specifics, saying only, “The solar system has millions of terrific planets, and they’re all better than Earth, which is a sick, failing loser.”

Trump’s remarks drew a strong response from one of the United States’ NATO allies, Germany’s Angela Merkel. “I strongly support Donald Trump leaving the planet Earth,” she said.

I'm with Angela Merkel!

Resist and Persist!!!

Think Progress — …Sen. John Wiles (R) knew that if he could lift Georgia’s law that banned outside groups from purchasing anonymous mailers, he could transform the way his party conducts campaigns. He declared at the time that he would “not support any effort to regulate anonymous political speech.”

Wiles was able to get his colleagues on board, and they quietly passed legislation removing the ban. But the move earned him critics, including the top Republican in the state tasked with running elections.

Karen Handel, then Georgia’s Republican secretary of state, said she was “adamantly” opposed to Wiles’ political maneuver—she had recently launched a “transparency in government” program.

Handel is relying heavily on the same kind of spending she so recently fought against.

Outside groups have spent roughly $9 million supporting Handel’s campaign during the primary and leading up to the June 20 runoff. More than $250,000 of that total has been spent on anonymous direct mail. 

“Karen Handel was for a ban on secret political spending, but now that it’s clear she can’t compete with Jon Ossoff and his small-dollar, grassroots donors, her campaign is almost completely reliant on special interest money from groups that refuse to disclose their donors.”

So much for being "adamantly opposed" to dark money.  I did not like Karen Handel and her shenanigans when she was with Susan G Komen and I am disappointed to see her back in the limelight with her Republican talking points and lack of ethics.  The special election in Georgia's 6th district is set for 20 June 2017.  May it turn blue with Jon Ossoff who garnered 48.1% of the vote in the jungle primary.

Resist and Persist!!!

My Universe

Kung Fu Kitty!

Break dance kitty!

 

 

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May 312017
 

I'm waiting for Store to Door to deliver groceries.  Wendy comes this evening, and I have plenty of stink to keep her scrubbing for a while.  Tomorrow I have two appointments with Christine, my Ophthalmologist in preparation for my first cataract surgery on the 23rd.  Please expect only a Personal Update.  I'll be fully dilated and virtually blind when I return.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today's took me 3:14 (average 4:19).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (GQ Channel): Shouldn’t Jared Kushner Be Arrested? | The Resistance with Keith Olbermann

 

Arrest Kushner Now! RESIST!!

From The New Yorker: Donald J. Trump tweeted early Wednesday morning that his practice of sleeping only four hours a day was having no impact whatsoever on his ability to cljjryff.

Trump, who repeatedly touted his high energy level during the 2016 campaign, tweeted that, despite his gruelling Presidential schedule, he still had enormous reserves of stamina, which he called “stamgygygyggy.”

In the same tweetstorm, he lashed out at news reports questioning his fitness for office, denouncing them as “fakequez%(™.”

Andy is back to straight news again. RESIST!!

From NY Times: Back from overseas and confronting an unforgiving political environment, President Trump appears increasingly isolated inside the White House, according to advisers, venting frustration over the performance of his staff and openly talking about shaking it up. But as he considers casting off old aides, Mr. Trump is finding it challenging to recruit new ones.

The disclosures from investigations stemming from Russian meddling in last year’s election — coupled with the president’s habit of undercutting his staff — have driven away candidates for West Wing jobs that normally would be among the most coveted in American politics, according to people involved in the search.

By the time the first change in what may be a broader shake-up was announced Tuesday, the White House was left without a replacement. Michael Dubke, the White House communications director, said he would step down, but four possible successors contacted by the White House declined to be considered, according to an associate of Mr. Trump who like others asked not to be identified discussing internal matters.

That makes perfect sense. If I were a completely corrupt Republican (tautology intended), I would not accept an appointment from the Fuhrer without a guaranteed full-salary pension for life and a blanket full pardon for all crimes: past, present and future. RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0531Cartoon

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May 292017
 

Yesterday the temperature reached 87°, 5° cooler than Saturday, but still a new record high for the date.  Today will be another 5° cooler, still way above average.  Tomorrow we should return to temperate weather for this time of year.  I look forward to it.  This morning, the porcelain throne huffed, puffed, strained, and sent the 10% of my body weight that was Republican swirling down to join Scalia and Ailes. Party smile

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:01 (average 5:10).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From Daily Kos (classic 9/2012): 

As a public service to those who find themselves inextricably cornered by aggressively ill-informed Republicans at work, on the train or at family gatherings, presented here are ten indisputably true facts that will seriously challenge a Republican’s worldview and probably blow a brain cell or two. At the very least, any one of these GOP-busters should stun and confuse them long enough for you to slip quietly away from a pointless debate and allow you to get on about your business.

1. The United States is not a Christian nation, and the Bible is not the cornerstone of our law.

Don’t take my word for it. Let these Founding Fathers speak for themselves:

John Adams: “The government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.” (Treaty of Tripoli, 1797)

Thomas Jefferson: “Christianity neither is, nor ever was, a part of the common law.” (Letter to Dr. Thomas Cooper, February 10, 1814)

James Madison: “The civil government … functions with complete success … by the total separation of the Church from the State.” (Writings, 8:432, 1819)George Washington: “If I could conceive that the general government might ever be so administered as to render the liberty of conscience insecure, I beg you will be persuaded, that no one would be more zealous than myself to establish effectual barriers against the horrors of spiritual tyranny, and every species of religious persecution.” (Letter to the United Baptist Chamber of Virginia, May 1789)

You can find a multitude of similar quotes from these men and most others who signed the Declaration of Independence and/or formulated the United States Constitution. These are hardly the words of men who believed that America should be a Christian nation governed by the Bible, as a disturbingly growing number of Republicans like to claim.

2. The Pledge of Allegiance was written by a socialist.

The Pledge was written in 1892 for public school celebrations of the 400th anniversary of Columbus’ arrival in the Americas. Its author was Francis Bellamy, a Baptist minister, Christian socialist and cousin of socialist utopian novelist Edward Bellamy. Christian socialism maintains, among other ideas, that capitalism is idolatrous and rooted in greed, and the underlying cause of much of the world’s social inequity. Definitely more “Occupy Wall Street” than “Grand Old Party” by anyone’s standard.

3. The first president to propose national health insurance was a Republican.

He was also a trust-busting, pro-labor, Nobel Peace Prize-winning environmentalist. Is there any wonder why Theodore Roosevelt, who first proposed a system of national health insurance during his unsuccessful Progressive Party campaign to retake the White House from William Howard Taft in 1912, gets scarce mention at Republican National Conventions these days?

I shared three. Click through for the other seven. All ten still apply. RESIST!!

From The New Yorker: Donald J. Trump on Saturday accused the media of exaggerating his relationship with Jared Kushner, asserting that “I don’t know him very well.”

“He’s someone I would see around the office and who, I guess, was working for me,” Trump told reporters on the last leg of his foreign trip. “Beyond that, I couldn’t tell you much about him.”

Trump acknowledged that he had spoken to Kushner at times during the 2016 campaign. “I’d pass him in the hall and say hello,” he said. “He seemed like an O.K. person. I never got much of a sense of the guy.”

Dang Andy! With Kushner on his way under the bus, will Russia’s Red Rat pimp Ivanka to someone else? RESIST!!

From The Village Green: About half the students in a group of South Orange Middle School 8th graders touring the Capitol in D.C. this past week refused a photo with House Speaker Paul Ryan, according to students on the field trip.

Elissa Malespina, a school librarian who is also the parent of a SOMS eighth grader, reported that her son was among the students who declined to pose with Ryan for a photo.

“I am so proud of my son and 1/2 the 8th grade at South Orange Middle School,” Malespina wrote on Facebook. “They went to D.C. on a field trip and toured the Capitol building. The kids had a chance to have their picture taken with Paul Ryan and over half the class choose not to, including my son! What a powerful statement.”

The kids gave reasoned opinions for their choice — and said they were not fueled by partisanship.

“I think that taking the picture represents that you agree with the same political views and I don’t agree with his political views so I chose not to be in it,” said Wendy Weeks, an 8th grade SOMS student.

“I can’t take a picture with someone who supports a budget that would destroy public education and would leave 23 million people without healthcare,” said 8th grade SOMS student Matthew Malespina.

“I didn’t want to be in [the picture] because he believes in most of what Trump believes in,” said another SOMS 8th grader, Louisa Maynard-Parisi.

Huge Kudos to the students. I hope someone rubbed Lyin’ Ryan’s long, long nose in this. RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0529Cartoon

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May 262017
 

Please pardon my brevity.  After yesterday, I’m exhausted, and the muggy heat has returned.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today’s took me 3:31 (average 5:12).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (Real Time Channel): F**k Mars

I agree that Mars cannot save us from climate change, and our resources are far better spent in rehabilitating earth. However, e3xploring our solar system is still necessary, not as a place to live, but as a source of raw materials to use here. RESIST!!

From YouTube (Full Frontal Channel): Web Extra: A Brief History Of Florida’s Felon Voting Ban

 

Here in Oregon, prisoners with outside addresses can register to vote as part of the prerelease program, and have their ballots mailed to those addresses, allowing them to vote the day after release. Oregon leads the way! The best way to encourage felons to commit more crimes is to tell them they have no stake in the community. RESIST!!

From The New Yorker: The health-care bill passed by House Republicans earlier this month offers no coverage for injuries suffered as a result of body slamming, according to a report issued on Thursday.

The report, released by the nonpartisan Center for Comprehensive Health Coverage, warns of sharp increases in health-care costs for the nation’s body-slamming sufferers.

Costs associated with body slamming, such as X-rays to the elbow and other injured body parts, would have to be paid for out of pocket under the G.O.P. plan, the report says.

In a separate finding, the report indicates that the Republican health-care bill’s vision-care option does not offer replacement eyewear in the case of glasses being smashed or otherwise demolished in an unprovoked body-slamming incident.

Dang Andy! And Montana is a state of rabid fools too! RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0526Cartoon

Trump won’t be.

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May 242017
 

We have a couple days of cool weather, and they couldn't have come soon enough for me.  I expect Store to Door to deliver my groceries between now (12:15) and 3:00 PM.  This evening Wendy will be here, and has plenty of stink to remove from the heat-waved TomCat.  Please expect no more than a Personal Update tomorrow, as I have an an appointment with a new Prosthetist.  My old one moved out of town, so the new one will need to familiarize herself with George, Stumpy and me in order to get approval for my annual upgrades.

Jig Zone Puzzle:

Today's took me 2:54 (average 4:45).  To do it, click here.  How did you do?

Short Takes:

From YouTube (GQ Channel): So, What About Those Oval Office Tapes? | The Resistance with Keith Olbermann

 

For us, the best option may be impeachment in 2019, if we can take the House. Presenting Trump's agenda is a less difficult win that stopping the same agenda under Pence. RESIST!!

From The New Yorker: Donald J. Trump’s foreign trip hit a snag on Tuesday, when the remaining countries on his itinerary announced that they would rather “wait a month” and meet with the next President instead.

“It makes no sense for us to roll out the red carpet for Trump when there is going to be a completely different guy in the White House in a month,” Hendrik van der Valde, a travel minister for the Belgian government, said. “We very much look forward to hosting the next U.S. President, be it Mike Pence or Paul Ryan or whoever.”

Citing the exorbitant costs of hosting a President, the Belgian said it “would be insane” to spend such sums on someone who “only has a few weeks left” in office.

LOL Andy! Those foreigners sure are smarter than we are! RESIST!!

From CNN: Conditions are right for a major Democratic wave to sweep out the House Republican majority next fall, according to Nathan Gonzales, who runs the "Inside Elections" campaign tipsheet.

"The midterm elections are still nearly a year and a half away, and the political dynamics could yet change, but we shouldn't ignore the fact that history and the current environment are merging together for a potentially great set of elections for Democrats in November 2018," writes Gonzales in a piece published Wednesday morning.

God knows we need it! RESIST!!

Cartoon:

0524Cartoon

Republicans still don't believe it.

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