What an enjoyable lunch I had with my lady friends. We met at a 12 week programme in the fall of 2014, and following my suggestion, we have met once a month for conversation and lunch since the end of the programme. After today's lunch, I was feeling very good, more confident . . . I was told by 3 people that I looked like I had lost weight. Inside I was doing handsprings! Then at my local bookstore, a clerk told me the same thing. I had to laugh later though because I realised I was sitting straighter and walking taller. Now, if I only knew it was true . . . I do not have a scale.
Robert Reich — Why did the white working class abandon the Democrats?
The conventional answer is Republicans skillfully played the race card.
In the wake of the Civil Rights Act, segregationists like Alabama Governor George C. Wallace led southern whites out of the Democratic Party.
Later, Republicans charged Democrats with coddling black “welfare queens,“ being soft on black crime (“Willie Horton”), and trying to give jobs to less-qualified blacks over more-qualified whites (the battle over affirmative action).
The bigotry now spewing forth from Donald Trump and several of his Republican rivals is an extension of this old race card, now applied to Mexicans and Muslims – with much the same effect on the white working class voters, who don’t trust Democrats to be as “tough.”
All true, but this isn't the whole story. Democrats also abandoned the white working class.
Click through to see how, in Reich's opinion, Democrats abandoned the white working class. He makes some very valid points.
Crooks and Liars — A pictoral essay. Isn't this the truth! Although in my mind, Kagan, Sotomayor and Stephen Breyer would be good to add some diversity.
The SCOTUS Dream Team
Politico — Senator Ted Cruz invoked President John F. Kennedy's name and legacy in a campaign appearance the other day, arguing that if he were alive today, Kennedy would be a Republican. Specifically, he said Kennedy “would be tarred and feathered by the modern Democratic Party. …
Cruz described the Kennedy campaign as one for tax cuts, limited government and tough talk against the Soviets.
And yet, accepting the nomination of the Democratic Party in 1960, Kennedy said this: “There may be those who wish to hear more—more promises to this group or that—more harsh rhetoric about the men in the Kremlin—more assurances of a golden future, where taxes are always low and subsidies ever high.” But he admitted he wasn’t that candidate. He outlined his vision for a New Frontier—a platform of challenges rather than promises, an appeal to public interest over private comfort. Clearly, Cruz hasn’t read that speech.
JFK Jr must be rolling in his grave at the audacity of Ted Cruz dragging his name and legacy into the Republican mud!
Washington Post — Stephanie Czech Rader was the daughter of Polish immigrants, uneducated laborers who settled in Poughkeepsie, N.Y., in the early 1920s and barely spoke English. Her immersion in Polish language and culture proved critical to her success, against daunting odds, as a U.S. spy in Europe after World War II.
Recruited to the Office of Strategic Services and the Strategic Services Unit of the War Department, precursors to the CIA, she was officially employed as a clerk at the U.S. Embassy. In reality, she was undercover, an agent whose flawless Polish accent and mannerisms allowed her to move around the Soviet-dominated country with relative ease.
She faced near-constant hazard anyway. Conditions in Warsaw were bleak and dangerous. …
Mrs. Rader did not embody the cliches of Hollywood espionage. She was a chemistry major who glided into the shadows, hardened to spycraft but only up to a point.
“They gave me a gun but I never carried a gun,” she said. “What the heck was I gonna do with a dumb gun?”
I ran across this obituary and found Rader's story compelling. In a Daily Beast story, author Shane Harris noted:
… pushing through a Legion of Merit recommendation that was approved by Rader’s senior officers in 1946. The War Department, though, thought she should get a lesser award.
Rader perhaps had two strikes against her. First, she was a woman. Second, she was a member of the newly formed Office of Strategic Services, the United States’ first central intelligence service and the precursor to the CIA.
Harris is likely correct . . . being a woman was likely a prime reason for not receiving the Legion of Merit. I hope this folly willed be rectified.
Huff Post — Adorable kitties are getting sanctuary inside a mosque in Turkey this winter.
Big-hearted imam Mustafa Efe lets stray cats shelter from freezing cold temperatures inside the Aziz Mahmud Hüdayi Mosque in Istanbul, according to local English-language newspaper Daily Sabah.
I make no secret about it . . . I adore cats! So I wanted to share this story of stray cats given shelter, and more importantly, love. The videos are cute. They might even be rated CO — Cuteness Overload! Are you up to it?
My Universe —
I believe cats to be spirits come to earth. A cat, I am sure, could walk on a cloud without coming through. — Jules Verne