Because you asked…

…we were driving during the earthquake, and sailing along on the glass-smooth surface of Rt. 401, felt nothing.

(Tell me, someone: How does a nation modeled on European socialism manage to get so many things right? Five hundred miles of 401, and there was nary a pothole. Plus, I hear that if we’d fallen and scraped a knee, the bandage would be free! Wonders upon wonders!)

Anyway, our waitress at lunch reported her mother felt it in bed and her friend felt it “on the toilet.” A radio station described massive traffic jams in Ottawa, so there may have been some road damage there.

Anyway, having a lovely time, just checking e-mail. Montreal is beautiful, and everyone is speaking French. Except when they’re speaking German. (Tourist season.)

So let’s reset the comments, and bring ’em up here.

Posted at 9:05 pm in Same ol' same ol' |

84 responses to “Because you asked…”

  1. brian stouder said on June 23, 2010 at 9:18 pm

    Many years ago (mid-’80’s?) the earth quaked here, in Fort Wayne, and I felt it.

    I was sitting on the floor against a sofa, watching TV – and it seemed that a dump truck had driven by, except one hadn’t. It was disorienting; an odd mix of wondering what was felt, and disbelief that it was actually an earthquake. (one can only imagine what the person “on the toilet” was thinking! Probably whatever the French phrase is for ‘Oy Vey’)

    Didn’t feel anything today, although they say it could be felt here.

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  2. Bill said on June 23, 2010 at 9:26 pm

    I’m guessing Nancy is on her way to Quebec City, Paris of North America. If the earthquake was felt here (western Chicago suburbs), I totally missed it. I did see the winning goal, though. Go USA!

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  3. LAMary said on June 23, 2010 at 10:57 pm

    5.0. That’s respectable. Not enough to take down a house but enough to get your attention.

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  4. Bob (not Greene) said on June 23, 2010 at 10:59 pm

    No earthquake here in Chicago, but a helluva lot of flooded roads! Goddamn that was a lot of rain in a short period of time. And lightning.

    Oh, Nance, in Montreal I understand you must give this local dish a try.

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  5. MichaelG said on June 23, 2010 at 11:07 pm

    I just had another long phone conversation with my son in law. He’s the first sergeant in a helicopter maintenance company that’s in the midst of deploying to A’stan. His tired, matter of fact discussion of the things that he’s responsible for and that he has to make happen left me with a new and renewed respect for what senior NCOs are expected to accomplish. I’ll spare the details, many of which I can’t even remember, the rest are way too many to relate here. The CO is gone and it is up to R to see that everything and everyone and all the details (of which there are many) in Texas are in the pipeline to Afghanistan before he leaves around July 15.

    The brigade has a Chinook company, a Blackhawk company and an Apache company. R is the 1Sgt of the Maintenance company. It’s up to him to keep all the birds in the air. And I mean up to him. He answers all questions.

    His unit is being deployed to a new spot in northern A’stan. They will be creating a new base on bare ground. There they’ll support conventional US units, Germans, Norwegians and Special Operations people. This is a whole new front for the war and a high profile one at that.

    R is a serious right winger. I avoid certain discussions with him for our mutual comfort. He related this evening that he had spent an hour and a half today with the brigade commander (a bird colonel) and that the subject of McChrystal had come up. Their take was exactly as I had expected. They don’t like Obama but McChrystal had crossed the line and had to go. R feels that the incident will disrupt things in A’stan for the next couple of months. I’m not qualified to comment.

    R is a guy whom I would never have encountered let alone have long discussions with but for his relationship with my daughter. All I can say is that he’s a fine father and a fine husband and that my daughter is in love.

    Brian, I’ve been through several good earthquakes and even knowing what was happening, it was always disorienting.

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  6. Dexter said on June 24, 2010 at 12:09 am

    It was felt in Bowling Green, Ohio , said some BGSU kids on Toledo 11 News, but no one I know felt it here in Bryan, Ohio. I was “in” my first earthquake 40 years ago and I instantly respond when the slightest tremor is felt. I felt nothing.
    Like Mr. Bob (Not Greene) , we got storms . I am sure BrianStouder knows what i mean. Bryan the town seemed to avoid a lot of the damage surrounding areas sustained. Edgerton had severe damage, said the news team from Toledo, at least one injury, and significant damage to the Town Hall. Defiance County as well as north of us in Michigan had a lot of 14″ diameter trees snapped off.
    It was raining and dark this morning on I-294 northwest of Chicago when my brother entered the roadway. He was cut off and hit, and his car spun twice and crashed into the guard rail, ending his trip to our cousin’s funeral in The Fort. He’s OK. His Mazda Miata ain’t.
    My dog hid under the couch; our cat licked his paws and bathed. What?…him worry?

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  7. Dexter said on June 24, 2010 at 12:36 am

    Wow…this from The Toledo Blade:
    “Storm rips roof from town hall in Edgerton, Ohio, firefighter injured
    Trees down, power out, in the small Williams County community

    Storms that swept across northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan Wednesday night hammered the Edgerton, Ohio, town hall, picking up its roof and dropping it on the fire station a few feet away.

    A firefighter who was outside the fire station when the town hall roof collapsed was taken to a hospital in Bryan for nonlifethreatening injuries, according to a witness who answered the telephone at the Edgerton Fire Department.

    He said in a later call the weight of the town hall roof was beginning to show signs of stress on the fire hall roof.”

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  8. Connie said on June 24, 2010 at 1:15 am

    Brian, you may be remembering what I think of as the great Indianapolis earthquake of 1987. In some prev. thread Jeff tmmo and I discovered we had each experienced that earthquake at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis.

    We took shelter earlier this evening from what I believe were the same storms Deb was worrying about in Chicago in an earlier comment. Tornadoes to the south of us, tornadoes to the north of us, just thunderstorms through the center. I enjoyed the part where the weather guy wondered why his 55 mph storm had quit moving across his screen, checked a few other radar sources, and then was informed that lightning had taken out the National Weather Service radar tower in Kosciusko County.

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  9. Cathie from Canada said on June 24, 2010 at 3:14 am

    Welcome to Canada — sorry to greet you with an earthquake!
    Also, sorry to disappoint you, but Canada’s medical care is not “free” — we pay for it just like you do. Instead of everybody paying premiums to an insurance company, we all pay additional income taxes to our federal and provincial governments, who then cover the bills that hospitals and doctors send in — so the rich pay a lot more for their health care than the poor do.
    The advantage we have over Americans is that we don’t have to pay for health care out of our pocket and then argue with an insurance company about reimbursement — rather, our health providers bill the government, and THEY have to argue with the government about reimbursement.
    The disadvantage is that we don’t have as large a population as the USA, so we don’t have as many specialists or as many high-tech procedures.
    Americans can get health care in Canada, but you have to pay for it either personally or through your own insurance. So if you scape your knee, you do have to buy your own bandages still…

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  10. Michael said on June 24, 2010 at 7:55 am

    For several summers we visited friends in Vermont by driving to Montreal, turning right for 60 miles and then another right back into the states. The 401 is, I believe, North America’s longest, straightest, non-toll road. It is fast, efficient (except rush hour in Toronto) and frightfully boring. Counting cows, are we?

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  11. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 24, 2010 at 7:59 am

    Tell Celine Dion I said hi!

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  12. Dorothy said on June 24, 2010 at 8:23 am

    At work yesterday no one in my office (an hour north of Columbus) felt the quake but in Columbus some did, including my co-worker’s daughter, who texted her mom 15 minutes after she felt it. We thought she was joking. I heard from some Pittsburgh friends who felt it, too.

    MichaelG my brother-in-law has been an Army first sergeant helicopter maintenance guy for years. He is actually employed by the Army (works on a base in Johnstown PA) but is also National Guard for at least 20 years, maybe a little more. He’s 47 years old. He has not been to Iraq or Afghanistan but did a year or so in Kosovo from 2000-2001.

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  13. brian stouder said on June 24, 2010 at 8:34 am

    Boy, that was a BIG storm last night! Somewhere around 10:00, I was working on a comment at Laura Lippman’s site (she has a marvelous new post up regarding the novel Peyton Place), and had the police/fire website going, which always makes an interesting background. The call had just gone out that there was a tornado warning all across the county, when – BLIP – all our lights went out and the house fell silent, except for the sound of the howling wind outside.

    I then did what my dad always used to do when a big storm came up; I went out on the front porch to observe. This was sort of a mistake, as the wind was coming right out of the west, and right into my face; and indeed, the wind really was “howling”. I’m not sure if that eerie harmonic sound is caused by the trees and ground – but the howl was pronounced, and somewhat unnerving. Then the rain came – and I was instantly soaked – so back into the house I went, where the power had come back on. (we’re almost never blacked out for more than a minute, as Channel 15 is right behind us, and when their generator kicks on, we do too, regardless whether the rest of the neighborhood is blacked out).

    So I left the computer off, and went to bed to read, as the atmosphere finshed raging, and then calmed

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  14. Sue said on June 24, 2010 at 8:55 am

    We’re talking earthquakes and Danny hasn’t popped in to tell us that’s nothin’ compared to San Diego. It looks like he’s really abandoned us, folks.
    Lots of storm and tornado damage in counties around us the last two days (‘flattened’ is a popular word in the newscasts lately), just heavy rain here.

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  15. Dave said on June 24, 2010 at 10:01 am

    Nancy, If at all possible, go on to Quebec City. Beautiful small city that you can easily cover on foot, with many excellent restaurants.

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  16. devtob said on June 24, 2010 at 10:08 am

    Ditto on Quebec City, it’s a lot more Francophone than Montreal, and is in many ways just like a small provincial French city — walls, pedestrian zones, interesting old buildings, charming shops and restaurants, affordable accommodations, etc.

    If you’re in Montreal Saturday night, do not miss the fireworks competition, viewable for free from the eastern end of the Vieux Port.

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  17. Deborah said on June 24, 2010 at 10:39 am

    The tornado sirens sounded at 6:15 pm yesterday in the Chicago Loop, I didn’t hear them but some other people in my office did. We of course ran to the windows to see what we could see. Nothing to see but dark clouds, it didn’t even seem that windy. We had plans to go to a free concert in Millennium Park last evening, Pink Martini was scheduled to perform, supposed to start at 6:30. Needless to say we didn’t go and I’m assuming the whole thing was canceled. If you ever get a chance to go to one of the free concerts in Chicago’s Millennium Park you should do it. It is the most pleasant thing to do in the summer here. Most everyone brings picnics, and it’s the only time they allow alcohol to be consumed in the park. When it starts it’s sunny and by the time the concert ends you’ve watched the city transform into its enchanting, sparkling nightlife.

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  18. Joe Kobiela said on June 24, 2010 at 10:41 am

    Nice storm last night,I was out on the deck watching it come in. I had the night off from flying, lots of lightning and wind. I flew Monday night from Pitsburgh to Milwaukee then on out to Kansas City. Coming across the lake to Milwaukee was one giant light show,nothing like seeing lightning from 5,000ft hit the water. Soon as I landed I taxied over to republic maint hanger to pick up my parts and they pulled me in and shut the doors. I sat for 90 minutes as they closed the airport. left for K.C. and had to divert about 50 miles west all the way to attumwa Iowa to get around another storm down in southern Illinos and then Tuesday Morning had to divert around a big one going back to Auburn. Nothing like flying in the summer.Tuesday night was alot better although it was still 81 in Birmingham Alabama at 4am.
    Pilot Joe

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  19. ROgirl said on June 24, 2010 at 10:53 am

    In today’s Kwame news, a 19 count federal indictment for fraud and tax evasion, charges that he used money from his “civic fund” for personal expenses such as yoga classes, golf lessons and Escalades.

    Can bribery charges be far behind? Stay tuned.

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  20. brian stouder said on June 24, 2010 at 11:08 am

    Joe – sounds great!

    These are the days when it’s good to have a fine young son around, who will mow the grass – which has been green green green, and leaping skyward (along with various clovers and weeds and crabgrass, but we digress) these days.

    Which reminds me that I have to repair the weed whip; loading replacement string into the head is theoretically possible (they sell the replacement string, afterall) – but durned if I can figure how to do it. I was being too cheap to buy the $8 pre-loaded replacement spool, but I think I shall do that – before the tall grass along the fence simply takes over

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  21. Julie Robinson said on June 24, 2010 at 11:16 am

    Deborah, we went to a concert in Millennium Park two summers ago and it was wondrous. They had a full symphony orchestra and Broadway stars performing music by Bernstein. I was astounded that it was free, but then I remembered how much it costs to park. So I guess it all evens out. Our daughter has a lighter schedule this summer and she’s going to every concert she can and loving it.

    No further storm damage here. I think every slightly loose branch has been blown out of every tree already. What a year it’s been.

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  22. A.Riley said on June 24, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    Believe it or not, the Pink Martini show at Millenium Park went on. The WFMT announcers were talking about it this morning. All the people huddled in the wings and restrooms while the storm went on, and once it passed, they came out, settled down, and the show went on. They were only delayed about an hour.

    How ’bout that!

    Millennium Park is Mayor Daley’s monument, and a fine one it is, too. I imagine in years to come they’ll rename it for him, or for Mrs. Daley. Or both. We love the concerts there — just enjoyed the Symphony & Chorus performing Haydn, Hindemith, and Beethoven last weekend.

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  23. alex said on June 24, 2010 at 12:42 pm

    Pink Martini — now that’s a show I’d have gone to see, storm or no. Oh, how I miss Sweet Home Chicago. Going there this weekend.

    Last night heard tornado sirens after coming in from a boat ride at Pleasant Lake, so decided to scurry home ASAP. It was quite the wild ride.

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  24. doug loveland said on June 24, 2010 at 1:36 pm

    on the way home, break up the trees-and-rocks of the 401 east of Kingston and take the Loyalist Parkway. Have a camera ready for the picturesque and extravagent cottages along the thousand islands.

    You’ll get US cell service in places, too.

    bon voyage

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  25. Deborah said on June 24, 2010 at 3:36 pm

    Dang it. I missed it, but it would have been pretty soggy sitting on the lawn last evening to see the Pink Martini concert. We spent the evening watching the light show on the lake from our high-rise place. Not Pink Martini, but not bad. We enjoyed the pesto, crudite and dip that Little Bird made for us to munch on during the concert. Fresh pesto made from basil bought that morning, mmmmmmm.

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  26. prospero said on June 24, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    Wimbledon, y’all. vs. the World Cup. How many soccer players would have besmirched the game by taking a dive?

    Both guys rule. This was like The Old Man and the Sea.

    Reminded me of when John Roddick played two marathon matches in one day, fought through cramps time and again in 100F Athens, GA humid heat, and put away the national championship for UGA. But this was like doing that three days in a row. As we say, somewhat ineluctably to folks from other schools, “Damn good Dawg”.

    Web is full of ignorant comment pining for the days of short pants and Davis Imperials, claiming Isner’s got nothing but his serve. First place, his opponents serve was close to being as devastating. In the end, Nicolas Mahut hit great serves and Isner hit what amounted to right-left passing shots that were impossible to return. (He actually hit three in that last game, far as I’m concerned, like nobody wanted to make a close call at 69-68, but that ball was in at 15-love.)

    There were people on blogs saying both players sucked because they lacked a NASCAR Driver’s will to win.

    Anyway, when it came to the end, I didn’t get to see it, because tennis was moved to ESPNU, whatever that is, and both ESPN I and II were showing Italy barf chunks at the World Cup.

    I got a kick out of the well-intentioned Patrick Mc saying it wasn’t exactly the level of play that made the match compelling. You might be fooled Pat. You never reached anything like that level except in doubles with your brother. He’s sort of right. But what level of play would somebody expect from God after 11 hrs.? Far as I know, only one person that ever picked up a tennis implement after that sort of ordeal could hit those two shots past an opponent so valiant.

    Anyway, to my mind, the whole show made an open mockery of soccer players specializing in taking dives.

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  27. prospero said on June 24, 2010 at 3:56 pm

    Oh. That would be John Isner.

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  28. Sue said on June 24, 2010 at 4:10 pm

    Hmmm, looks like I haven’t been paying attention here. Jobs bill about to fail even after Dems caved on some items (sorry, compromised) and Sen. Debbie Stabenow begging for some publicity, participating in a conference call this afternoon, trying to call attention to the GOP filibuster, get the word out and calling the potential failure “extremely serious”. Possible reason for the filibuster? Kill continued long-term unemployment compensation and help with jobs, make things worse for individual Americans then blame the Dems from now until November for not solving the jobs crisis.

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  29. prospero said on June 24, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    Regarding Russ Feingold and any number of ‘progressives’, , and the financial rules contemplated by the Senate. Did these self-absorbed, self-congratulatory idealogues ever here of Voltaire? Who wasn’t just smarter than they are, but a damn sight more revolutionary. The perfect is the enemy of the good. This same shit happenned about health care. Did Barack Obama candidate ever bring up the public option? Nope.

    This sort of Ralph Nader navel-gazing also ignores the beneficent effect of incrementalism in American politics, especially when the baby steps are actually huge. It’s like there’s some sort of Progressive purity test. Bullshit Senator, you seize your advance and declare victory, and you don’t spavin or hamstring the horse you rode in on. In my opinion, Feingold’s behavior is bizarre and self-serving, and it sure isn’t anything like Paul Wellestone whose memory he mined like Don Blankenship.

    The idea that Obama should have been able to wave a wand? If people are this stupid, whatever. Maybe almost everybody is too dumb to be allowed to vote. If you tried, you could not screw over the US economy worse than W did. If you were a responsible chief executive, you would have included all those years in Iraq and Afghanistan in the budget. Nope. There’s your deficit, along with deciding rich people should’nt pay taxes. Seriously, in the fce of facts, how’s there an argument?

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  30. brian stouder said on June 24, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Seri­ously, in the face of facts, how’s there an argu­ment?

    Well, it’s not fair to stipulate “seriously”!

    For years, I nodded along as people said the D’s were too diffuse and conciliatory in their political approach; too prone to the circular firing squad model of political debate. But indeed, this monochromatic lock-step extremism exhibited by the national GOP is increasingly tiresome. I think they’re going to “purify” themselves right over the cliff – and the flying monkeys of the rightwing airwaves will screech their approval the whole time. If I didn’t love my country, this would be worth laughing at; but the sick “joke” that kills the whole thing is that a lot of people are getting hurt (or killed) in the process.

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  31. Sue said on June 24, 2010 at 5:17 pm

    Russ Feingold isn’t doing anything new, Prospero. This is how he operates and he understands clearly that unlike health care, in the case of financial reform we’re not starting with nothing, we’re trying to rebuild something that has been effectively destroyed.
    Or maybe he’s learned a lesson from Blanche Lincoln, in reverse. Instead of withholding his vote until legislation has been gutted to order, he’s doing what he can to protect what he can before there’s nothing left. Blanche sure got a hell of a lot of attention and concessions with her antics, and also got substantially what she wanted.
    Unlike Blanche, Russ is doing this because he knows that giving away the store won’t help citizens at all. Also unlike Blanche, who introduced her derivatives legislation to try and make people forget about helping to hold health care reform hostage but won’t take too much heat for it since few support it anyway, he makes clear his reasons for standing firm on this – watered-down legislation won’t protect us from a repeat of what we’re going through right now.
    His votes aren’t universally popular in Wisconsin and he’s taken heat for everything from FISA to health care. He’s facing re-election this year just like Blanche and he’s not making his moves based on fear of the electorate.
    I can’t believe I’m arguing with Prospero.

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  32. mark said on June 24, 2010 at 7:13 pm

    Let’s stipulate that the economic disaster of 2008 is solely the fault of the Republicans or whatever you prefer to call the people you loathe so much. Liberals, dems and Obama all have clean hands. The reality remains that our economy was 70% consumer spending, and much of that spending was based upon inappropriate, irresponsible and sometimes criminal extensions of credit.

    There is no way to move back quickly to the artificially high level of GDP of 2007. We have to take the pain and grow our way out of the mess slowly, based upon real productivity.

    Government has spent 2 plus trillion dollars delaying the inevitable, replacing government borrowing for the now dryed up consumer borrowing. We have subsidized banks, cars, home purchases, appliance purchases and bloated state and local government budgets. Little went into infrastructure or plant investment that will enhance productivity and create long-term wealth.

    A majority of voters now reject the notion that we can spend and borrow our way out of a debt created economic mess, and prefer to take the lumps now rather than delay it further by borrowing from future generations. The example that Europe is providing only makes the conclusion more obvious.

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  33. Rana said on June 24, 2010 at 7:23 pm

    Mark, I am fully in agreement with your third paragraph. What distresses me is that now we’re looking at a future (and present) in which the majority of us have neither subsidized frivolous goodies nor a functioning infrastructure.

    Meanwhile, we keep pouring money down the hole that is Afghanistan. Irritates me to no end, that. What good does it do to stabilize that historically shaky pseudo-nation if back home we ourselves are falling apart? I’ve never been an isolationist – I have nothing but contempt for the people who like to pretend that the rest of the world doesn’t exist and doesn’t matter – but in a time of belt-tightening, it seems a mistaken set of priorities to worry about fixing the neighbor’s car with one’s own money (while said neighbor protests and complains and keeps hiding the tools) while one’s own house falls into disrepair.

    That said, I don’t see an easy way to safely shake that ill-thought-out commitment either. It frustrates me that we knew going into it that dealing with Afghanistan was going to limit our options for a long time, and yet no one wanted to talk about the probable costs – not just financial, but in terms of our energy, focus, etc.

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  34. moe99 said on June 24, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    For my money, I will still go with Krugman and the example set in 1937 when FDR cut back spending. I think we can better direct spending, but I don’t think cutting back will get us out of this and will instead extend the pain.

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  35. prospero said on June 24, 2010 at 9:20 pm

    Regarding Russ Feingold and any number of ‘progressives’, , and the financial rules contemplated by the Senate. Did these self-absorbed, self-congratulatory idealogues ever here of Voltaire? Who wasn’t just smarter than they are, but a damn sight more revolutionary. The perfect is the enemy of the good. This same shit happenned about health care. Did Barack Obama candidate ever bring up the public option? Nope.

    This sort of Ralph Nader navel-gazing also ignores the beneficent effect of incrementalism in American politics, especially when the baby steps are actually huge. It’s like there’s some sort of Progressive purity test. Bullshit Senator, you seize your advance and declare victory, and you don’t personalize this, you don’t spavin or hamstring the horse you rode in on. In my opinion, Feingold’s behavior is bizarre and self-serving, and it sure isn’t anything like Paul Wellestone whose memory he mined like Don Blankenship.

    The idea that Obama should have been able to wave a wand? If people are this stupid, whatever, don’t let them vote.. Maybe almost everybody is too dumb to be allowed to vote. If you tried, you could not screw over the US economy worse than W did. If you were a responsible chief executive, you would have included all those years in Iraq and Afghanistan in the budget. Nope. There’s your deficit, along with deciding rich people should’nt pay taxes.

    Seriously, in the face of facts, how’s there an argument? The deficit is the cost of the tax cuts for rich people and the two wars that didn’t actually count until Obama recognized and institutionalized the cost. Are voters this stupid? Anybody that dumb should not be allowed to vote.

    You can float two invasions without a clue, and fund them outside the national budget, while cutting rich peoples’ taxes to next to negligible, while trashing a $500bil surplus, and just leave it for the next guy when you’ve allowed banks to destroy the economy?

    How exactly was anybody supposed to clean up this mess? They actually figured out how, pretty much. So Republicans try to stymie job creation, blatantly, for cynical and disgusting political reasons.

    There is no job creation without federal spending. If you aren’t some scumbag politician like Boehner, you know that’s true. But, hell, you don’t care because denying jobs spending and federal support for job seekers is not in your political interest. Even if you have to strangle funding to troops in Afghanistan.

    Take a look. Republicans are shameless and they don’t actually care about funding the troops. They sure as shit don’t care about Americans that want to work that are struggling struggling to get by. How does a Teabagger justify this behavior? How does an actual patriotic American? How does a religious person, Christian, Muslim, whatever, justify abandoning people in need? I know Christianity doesn’t countenance abandoning people in need. You know, if his teachings make Jesus unAmerican, I’m on the side of the least of my brothers.

    Jesus kind of transcends politics. He said we should treat every other person the way we’d wish to be treated. Which part of that is dificullt to understand? Not really what he meant.

    What I think, there’s something bigger going on. Maybe I’m wrong and it’s all just a smackdown. OK. But you don’t know. It behooves you to treat your fellow man well. And why not? If its all some sort of joke, why not be decent to your fellow dupes? No shots fired.

    But if I’m right? Theillhards right about everything.

    I know that sounds glib, but it’s what I believe. Greedy Republican politicians think people that lose their unemployment should still vote for Republicans. How in the world do they figure? These people are assholes.

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  36. prospero said on June 24, 2010 at 9:30 pm

    Look y’all. I just think that holier than thou crap from so-called progressives is incredibly obnooxious. My mom and dad were plain old fashioned liberals. These holier-than-thou types, STFU. There is no reason to consider.

    If you are too stupid to understand Voltaire, you are probably taking on a level of intellectual activity you really aren’t suited for.

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  37. prospero said on June 24, 2010 at 9:49 pm

    Look you dumbnasses. Government spending puts people to work. That is a fact. It’s difficult to understand how you are so fucking dumn. Way to go you godamn idiot. You’re a moron, and a true idiot.

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  38. Deborah said on June 24, 2010 at 10:24 pm

    Prospero, what are you talking about? I’m really, really trying to understand. Is this like opening up Ulysses in the middle?

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  39. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 24, 2010 at 10:29 pm

    riverrun, past Eve and Adam’s, back by a commodius vicus of recirculation to Howth Castle and Environs . . .

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  40. brian stouder said on June 24, 2010 at 10:55 pm

    Deborah – yes.

    The thing is, after all these years, I ‘get’ Prospero more and more.

    Gimme a few more years, and I’ll be like Dennis Hopper’s character in Apocalypse Now, with regard to Propspero’s Marlon Brando character

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  41. Rana said on June 24, 2010 at 11:08 pm

    I tend to think of propero’s posts as akin to jazz riffs – they’re more an improvisation on a theme than a direct response.

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  42. prospero said on June 25, 2010 at 4:49 am

    Mr. Kurtz. He dead. And Russ Feingold believes he self-aggrandizes by insisting on perfect instead of very good. He really doesn’t do anybody any favors, and he gets more like that really creepy omphtaloptous solipcist Ralph Nader all the time. Who cares what this bastard thinks is a perfect world when actual progress can be made? He only cares about the potential perfect world for how it shines on him. Because, you know, he knows he’s perfect and nobody else is.

    And that’s American ‘Progressivism” as opposed to good old fashioned being a liberal. You know, they got this crap from George Lakoff. Rebranding and holier than thou. That’s a fairly finite opinion.

    It’s also quite obvious that deficit witch hunts when people don’t have jobs is Ayn Rand bullcrap. Government should be spending bigtime and putting people to work. W didn’t just decide rich people shouldn’t pay taxes, he decided to invade two countries without including the cost of the invasions in the national budget. Quelle horeur when an adult realized somebody had better count those costs. Tada. There’s your deficit. How difficult is that to understand?

    Although it’s still a little hard to understand how the pointy-headed little asshole gave away the surplus to rich people immediately upon being appointed by Scalia and Cheney.

    I may seem obtuse at times, but this is all straightforward. The invasions were done off the books. Obama included them in the budget like a responsible adult. What part of that Republican irresponsibility and hypocrisy is difficult to understand? Seriously, if that subterfuge took you in, you are too stupid to be allowed to vote.

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  43. ROgirl said on June 25, 2010 at 6:46 am

    Prospero, budget voodoo tricks have been the Republican SOP since Reagan. It’s their brand and they never miss an opportunity to twist it any which way to suit the circumstances. If it’s spending on wars they’ll vote for it and try for more, but if it’s spending on people without jobs or insurance, hey, tough luck.

    BTW, I loved your description of Ralph Nader as omphaloptous. James Joyce would be proud.

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  44. coozledad said on June 25, 2010 at 8:11 am

    I was just remembering the stream of helicopters and assorted cargo aircraft that flew over our our old house (it was in a military flightpath) while Bush was pretending to be seeking a diplomatic solution to the war he was always going to start with Iraq. All that hardware. Millions of dollars.
    And you know what? Most of it will just stay over there and rot.
    And if they ever get close to power again, it’ll be another deficit spending orgy for Bechtel and Halliburton and everyone else who blew Reagan.
    The libertarian right is so thoroughly disengaged from anything but lip-service to the idea of the nation state that it has begun to actively work against the interests of this country’s citizens: even prescribing punishments for the people who do the heavy lifting because”They’ve made bad life choices” or “They need to retrain themselves”. Here’s a real beauty from yet another trustafarian crayon chewer (H/T alicublog):
    Well, about the worst life choice you can make is to piss off people who’ve been fighting your asshole wars and living on next to nothing. That reflexive hatred for the people of this country Republicans have been nursing since FDR took office is indistinguishable from the attitude the Ceausescus took toward Romania, and it’s bound to end the same way.

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  45. MichaelG said on June 25, 2010 at 2:31 pm

    The State public health people have reported that whooping cough is at epidemic levels in CA, that at least a half dozen children have died and that we are on pace to break the record number of cases reported in 1958. 1958. And here I thought that we had vaccines and shit that were wiping out all these old childhood diseases. What? Oh. Vaccines are only good if they are administered and if the idiotically superstitious refuse to let their kids be vaccinated . . . We truly are on the road back to the 12th century.

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  46. paddyo' said on June 25, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    Bring out your dead!

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  47. Sue said on June 25, 2010 at 4:16 pm

    I for one look forward to the coming agrarian/barter-and-weapons-based economy. Not being very fashion-conscious, I believe serf clothing will suit me just fine.
    I’m not keen on the idea of Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh inhabiting the castle, though, since they’re not really clear on what ‘noblesse oblige’ entails.

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  48. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 25, 2010 at 4:21 pm

    Somehow, this blog post that was brought to the attention of Denison University’s public affairs office seemed appropriate for this thread —

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  49. coozledad said on June 25, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    Sometimes I wish the all the apocaleptics could get a little taste of that post industrial society they dream about. Then they’d find out the relative value of an Armalite compared to a bag of potatoes or a handful of dried beans. But all it would take is another Republican administration, and very few people really want that.

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  50. prospero said on June 25, 2010 at 4:27 pm

    Mitch McConnell (R, Massey) actually stood up in the Senate and said:

    The principle they’re defending here is not some program. The principle Democrats are defending is that they will not pass a bill unless it adds to the debt.

    I mean, Mitch is an ahole of the first order, but seriously. If a guy says this, and somebody votes for him, shouldn’t that voter be denied a chance to serially offend?

    It’s not the refusal to understand that when Obama actually put W’s invasions, wars and occupations on the books, it’s Democrats acting like adults. It’s not how mind-bendingly obtuse it is insisting that letting rich people not pay more then pocket change in taxes while receiving all the benefits of being a regular citizen taxpayer actually promotes job growth and increases public revenue. It’s not that McConnell’s statement is so crass, so callous, so utterly despicable and manipulative.

    Thing is, it’s just an incredibly over-the-top piece of partisan horseshit. No joke, anybody that would vote for this guy, well, is basically too dumb to vote, and paradoxically, deserves the government and the shabby treatment she gets. The rest of us don’t.

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  51. Sue said on June 25, 2010 at 4:51 pm

    Since this blog is filled with journalists, maybe you folks would like to chime in on today’s Dave Weigel resignation? I couldn’t understand the fury I was picking up from a few of the blogs I read until Ezra Klein explained it.
    Your thoughts?

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  52. coozledad said on June 25, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    Weigel pissed on Matt Drudge’s shoes in private correspondence. This is a firing offense at a paper that promoted the Iraq debacle. Drudge does, in fact rule their world. Weigel, in essence, committed a thought crime, and that cruelly misshapen piece of head-cheese Fred Hiatt caved to the right because that’s what they pay his ass to do.

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  53. LAMary said on June 25, 2010 at 5:04 pm

    I heard the story about whooping cough on the news, too. The elementary school in my neighborhood, where my kids went when they were little guys, has one of the highest percentages of unvaccinated kindergartners. I find it amazing that I have that many neighbors who are willing to take medical advice from Jenny McCarthy. She dated Jim Carrey for Christ’s sake. What kind of critical thinking does demonstrate?

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  54. Sue said on June 25, 2010 at 5:07 pm

    Actually, Cooz, I was wondering about the set up as opposed to the aftermath. What do the journalists among us think of what Tucker Carlson apparently did? And, is this group as set up acceptable or something that should not have been started?

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  55. coozledad said on June 25, 2010 at 5:12 pm

    Figures it was old Tucker, that asscrawling ponce. Maybe he figures this’ll get him the simulacrum of a job again.
    For all their screaming about show trials, these people sure can roll out a damn fine Stalinist snitch upon demand.

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  56. prospero said on June 25, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    cru­elly mis­shapen piece of head-cheese

    Fred Hiatt is an unmitigated (fill in the blank). But head cheese? That’s just cruel. How about scrapple?

    Anyway, I’d piss on Drudge’s shoes if I ever ran into the pisant Ananias. This schmuck needs a beating, badly.

    Remember when Prince Charles wanted to be reincarnated? Tucker Carlson was genetically predisposed and born a tampon in his current life (and he’d be ensconced in Ann Coulter if she had a vagina instead of an Adam’s apple). With a bow. SUSPICION CONFIRMED.

    Whatever the hell, though, it’s difficult to believe anybody that can tie shoes and/or breathe thinks Drudge is a journalist. Guy’s got an obtuse, sociopathic compulsion to turn cut and paste into flat lying his ass off and just making shit up.

    If you think too much about the idea that people read Matt Sludge and believe they’re well-informed, you might never leave the house.

    Here’s a piquant comment on this subject. As for Weigel himself, what in the world was he thinking in the first place? Why associate with people you find repulsive and dishonest?

    There’s also the fact that neither the pundits, nor possibly the Republicans, will be punished for their crazy outbursts of racism. Newt Gingrich is an amoral blowhard who resigned in disgrace, and Pat Buchanan is an anti-Semite who was drummed out of the movement by William F. Buckley. Both are now polluting my inbox and TV with their bellowing and minority-bashing. They’re never going to go away or be deprived of their soapboxes.

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  57. coozledad said on June 25, 2010 at 6:30 pm

    Hit it, Prospero!
    But if you really want to look into the quivering bucket of regurgitated tinned meat that lies at the heart of neoconservatism, Jay B.’s got it in its steaming fetid glory: I give you douchebag of douchebags Jeffrey Goldberg!

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  58. prospero said on June 25, 2010 at 6:56 pm

    Jeffrey can’t even possibly be the the biggest D-bag Goldberg, because Jonah is.

    What I don’t get in this hilarious situation is why WaPo fired Weigel. Seriously, is there something in their corporate structure that institutes the Conservatives Czar? Does Matt Drudge have some first right of disapproval? Why don’t they just hire one of the Goldbergs, or steal David Brooks from NYT, if they’re squeamish. Hell, William “Bill” Kristol. A paper of record firing a reporter because Republican assholes get annoyed because he thinks they’re Republican assholes might be the strangest aspect of this circus.

    This reminds me of the endless he said/she said about MSNBC and Fox. It’s not about points of view. One of those outlets doesn’t make shit up.

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  59. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 25, 2010 at 7:56 pm

    I read this and I’m disinterested in R or D tags. We’re gonna be making major spending cuts AND raising taxes. Where will we hear a political leader come from to explain what and why are the non-negotiables of the social contract, and how will they craft a tax/levy system that gives voters confidence that there’s shared sacrifice?

    Spending cuts AND tax increases. One way or another, both are going to happen, and neither party has an advantage by that mere fact. Someone could get a leg up by making sense and connecting dots, but spending all your public capital yelling about whose fault it is that we’re in this spot — that’s wearing thin already. The first person with a coherent plan is going to gain some real traction, but I’m not hearing anyone on either side of the aisle going there.

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  60. Rana said on June 25, 2010 at 9:11 pm

    MichaelG, LAMary, I’m not surprised to hear the news about whooping cough in California. Last winter my fiancé caught it; there’s been a resurgence here in the Midwest, and few adults get boosters. (I was lucky enough to be exposed without getting it.) It’s horrible – it’s not actually life-threatening, but it gives a pretty good impression, usually late at night when terrifying medical events are even more upsetting. I can’t imagine willingly risking one’s child getting it.

    If you haven’t had a booster in a long time, you might look into getting one.

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  61. MichaelG said on June 25, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    It’s not particularly life threatening to adults but it’s very dangerous to infants and toddlers. The hell of it is that, absent a bunch of half wit parents listening to Jenny McCarthy and some wing nut radio personalities, this wouldn’t have happened. It was totally avoidable.

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  62. coozledad said on June 25, 2010 at 9:56 pm

    When one party gave the keys to the liquor store to the banks and they drank up all the liquor and went careening through the vaults and spent everyone’s retirement money on coke, whores and more booze, it makes little sense, politically or otherwise, not to shout about it.
    But I’ll just go with a statement about the whole clusterfuck made by my congressman, a graduate of the London School of Economics, and a soft spoken southern gentleman of the first order: “The Republicans messed (fucked, in the vernacular) up every (goddamned) thing they could get their (fucking) hands on. He’s currently running against a totemic last ditch Republican functioning as an apparently black man who speculates that Obama and BP conspired to pollute the Gulf of Mexico together with the assistance of ACORN. The reintroduction of an Alan Keyes wing in the Republican party may address some of the grievances that the absence of paranoid schizophrenics in the national debate was leaving us with a slightly less colorfully hallucinatory brand of turd flinging, but it’s not going to help the Republicans here, since Richard Burr has been documented phoning his family in September 2008 telling them to withdraw their money from the bank, and pronto.
    Elaine Marshall’s going to coldcock his thieving ass with that.

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  63. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 25, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    4th para is what you want to see here —

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  64. Catherine said on June 26, 2010 at 2:57 am

    The whooping cough epidemic sucks, but it’s not entirely due to the anti-vaccination nutjobs. Vaccine-acquired immunity to pertussis can be lost in as little as 4 years. The booster that kids get around 12 YO is very important, but many kids and parents are oblivious to the need for the so-called pre-teen vaccinations, which also include meningitis and HPV. Some of the pertussis cases are being spread by older kids, who have incomplete immunity, to babies, who don’t yet have immunity.

    My now-12 YO was exposed to pertussis when she was <1 YO and not completely vaccinated, because the older sibling of a child in our parent ed class caught it from another sibling, who was exposed by a recent-immigrant classmate. None of the babies caught it, and the worst case was in the 10 YO sibling, who hadn't had her booster yet. The 12 YO sibling was the carrier, but she didn't develop much of a case, because she had received the booster.

    I'm actually working on a project now to help inform kids and parents about the need for the pre-teen vaccines. I mean, who wouldn't want the first available and tested cancer vaccine, right? The fundies who think only sinners get cervical cancer, that's who.

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  65. coozledad said on June 26, 2010 at 7:56 am

    Eric Cantor’s solution? Burn the motherfucker down!
    via Waldo Jaquith

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  66. moe99 said on June 26, 2010 at 10:32 am

    Jeffrey Goldberg doing his part to also get rid of Ezra Klein at the WaPo

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  67. Julie Robinson said on June 26, 2010 at 10:42 am

    Say what you will about intrusive government, but growing up in Illinois you could not attend school without proof of immunizations. One year my mom set the appointment for a couple of days after school started, and she was very surprised when she got a call informing her to pick me up at school. I had to stay home until I got those shots. It was a very effective method of ensuring vaccinations.

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  68. MichaelG said on June 26, 2010 at 12:59 pm

    Julie, that’s exactly the kind of intrusion government should make.

    Catherine, point taken. I was generally aware of the booster situation but hadn’t really thought about it. It’s obvious your work is desperately needed.

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  69. Linda said on June 26, 2010 at 9:27 pm

    Gov­ern­ment has spent 2 plus tril­lion dol­lars delay­ing the inevitable, replac­ing gov­ern­ment bor­row­ing for the now dryed up con­sumer bor­row­ing. We have sub­si­dized banks, cars, home pur­chases, appli­ance pur­chases and bloated state and local gov­ern­ment bud­gets. Lit­tle went into infra­struc­ture or plant invest­ment that will enhance pro­duc­tiv­ity and cre­ate long-term wealth.

    Government has spent money trying to get the American people to spend money, and for awhile, it worked. My brother in Detroit is working more hours than he has in the last 3 years, and my next door neighbor–employed at GM–still has a job because of the recovery act. My other next door neighbor, an elderly lady of limited means, has a house retrofitted with energy improvements that have drastically cut her power bills. The streets of Toledo are torn to hell with street and sewer improvements, but we needed every one of them, and more. Much of the recovery act went into tax breaks for businesses, and subsidies for banks, on the foolish notion that bankers would actually loan out the money to people trying to start or enlarge their busineses. Silly us! The banks used the money largely to fatten themselves, and still want to make money by safe “revenue streams,” i.e., fees. But that wasn’t Obama’s fault. Unfortunately, he has more faith in the financial sector than it has been shown to deserve.

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  70. brian stouder said on June 26, 2010 at 10:20 pm

    And again – nothing could possibly be more essentially wasteful and empty than military spending; what magic was contained in the United States’ war effort in the 1940’s? Unless we agree with Aztec-style blood-sacrifices (although on an infinitely greater scale of monstrosity), what is to say the government couldn’t end any economic depression by direct action, and without war, whenever it becomes necessary?

    We got no infrastructure from our spending on the Second World War (in fact it was all about actively destroying the infrastructure utilized by millions of others); government spent and spent and spent; borrowed and borrowed; and printed and printed money – and spent it all on stuff that was of very limited utlity, other than killing and destruction! And not only that, the government simply told all the big manufacturers what they would build; and individuals were told what they could buy (and when) – and the depression ended and the United States had economic boom times for the next two generations.

    By way of saying – if we want to order GM and Ford (et al) to build whatzits 24-7-365; and then take all the whatzits out to sea and dump them – that would be preferable to laying waste to Europe and Asia, and it WOULD end our economic difficulties.

    So it would only be all the better if the government directed spending on something useful like alternative energy (for example). Restoring economic health IS within the power of human gov­ern­ment; wealth is not a won­der of nature that can only be cre­ated by God (or some ortho­dox, strictly non-governmental litur­gi­cal hocus pocus).

    Aside from that, Grant and I just returned from spending Friday and Saturday in Columbus, Ohio; and all I can say is – what a marvelous place! Between the Origins game convention and the superb, marvelous, colorful, and completely enjoyable ComFest (across the way at Goodale Park), and then spending a day at COSI (mostly looking at RMS Titanic artifacts, but also many other neat things), we’re tuckered out. I think if all one did was walk down High Street (starting at Broad) – THAT would make for a full weekend; but we did more than that.

    We’ll have to go back soon

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  71. coozledad said on June 26, 2010 at 11:32 pm

    Sometimes when you’re doing a fundraiser in say, rural California, you might want to go with the giant candy bars, or donkey basketball, or let some of the village idiots pay to wrestle a bear or get punched senseless by an elderly chimpanzee. None of those are terribly attractive options, but they’re far less expensive than booking Sarah Palin, and indisputably more humane:

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  72. MichaelG said on June 27, 2010 at 12:45 am

    Oh, Brian. I agree with your thought that war is mostly a costly rather than productive enterprise. Especially post WWII war. But no infrastructure from WWII? How about hundreds of airfields, ports, shipyards, railroads and factories and lord knows what else? Most of which are still in use today. Zillions of dollars worth of machine tools, equipment, planes, trucks and other stuff provided cheap start ups for untold numbers of companies after the war. WWII was a bonanza of infrastructure improvements.

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  73. Linda said on June 27, 2010 at 6:48 am

    Sorry, re: the previous post. The auto companies had their fat pulled from the fire not by ARRA, but by a separate bailout program.

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  74. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 27, 2010 at 8:03 am

    . . . and you didn’t even make it over to Licking County, twenty minutes to the east of Columbus! ComFest is one weekend a year (as is Origins), but the Land of Legend is always here.

    Brian, you should make sure next time in Columbus to get the Statehouse tour. From Charles Dickens to Abraham Lincoln to George Washington Williams, it’s an odd labyrinth of 19th century history.

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  75. brian stouder said on June 27, 2010 at 11:01 am

    I would LOVE to do that! I think it would require having the whole crew with me, though, so that mom could be with the opt-outs while I did that. (I didn’t realize the Land of Legend was that close! Your tip will stay on my radar…especially if our Yet To Be Determined summer trip takes us that way)

    A friend on NN.c, who used to run the Fort Wayne Lincoln Museum, teaches a college course on (something like) ‘public history’, which essentially prepares people to create meaningful displays. I was reminded of this as I thoroughly enjoyed the Titanic display, as the people who pulled that together did such a great job – presenting things that addressed maybe a dozen different major themes, and in a coherent, engaging way.

    There is a fair amount to read, and if one is able to take in the narrative, combined with the understated ambient sounds and lighting effects that are included, the sum equals a memorable, enlightening experience.

    As for ComFest – I don’t think I’ver ever seen so many police in one place! They were on foot, on bikes, on horse, standing here and there, operating some sort of security crane (it had an array of cameras pointing every which-way, and would rise and swivel around like some sort of Star Wars mechanical raptor) – and even a constantly circling police helicopter….and this was at 3 in the afternoon!

    In reading more about that, I guess a guy got killed last year, so the police – to say the least – stepped up their game this year. And indeed, God only knows how big that crowd became after we departed, and the sun set, and the throngs we saw later converged upon the park.

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  76. Deborah said on June 27, 2010 at 11:13 am

    It’s hot in Chicago. Yesterday’s heat index was about 100. You couldn’t pay me to do this, my husband went to the Clapton Guitar Crossroads extravaganza yesterday at the soccer stadium on the south side. He went with a rock n roll buddy of his, they were there for about 13 hours, on the field in the blazing heat. They both came back lobsters, but they say they enjoyed every minute of it. They watched the greats including Clapton, Ronnie Wood, Cheryl Crowe, Jeff Beck, Steve Winwood, ZZ Top, Buddy Guy, BB King (suffering from dementia) and a bunch more.

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  77. coozledad said on June 27, 2010 at 12:00 pm

    BB King (suffering from dementia)
    As opposed to Ted Nugent (profiting from dementia).

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  78. Deborah said on June 27, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    Good one Coozledad. My husband said that BB King rambled on and on incoherently, Clapton and Co were trying desperately to get him to play instead. They said he was blown up like a balloon, and we know he’s a diabetic. It’s sad, but the guy is old. He was great in his time, but he’s an icon now, the performers that followed him in infamy must feel that they need to pay their respects. My husband said it was embarrassing to watch, and frustrating because they were physically exhausted just waiting for the grand finale.

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  79. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on June 27, 2010 at 3:15 pm

    To be fair to the ComFest organizers, the guy killed himself, but since it was the result of a hit of LSD, that triggered major security scrutiny. Plus the CPD (not to be confused w/ LSD) uses it as a warm-up for the full-on scrum of Red, White, and Boom which is this Friday on the riverfront.

    Holler if you make it over to Licking County, and we’ll get you the VIP treatment, albeit without the complementary therapeutic massage.

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  80. Dexter said on June 28, 2010 at 1:59 am

    The tornado an hour north of Detroit tore up a campground and killed one…

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  81. Dexter said on June 28, 2010 at 2:24 am

    Nance, you missed Camp Bacon at Zingerman’s.

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  82. Dexter said on June 28, 2010 at 8:31 am

    Senator Robert Byrd, R.I.P. The last of the old-time pols, he knew how Washington worked and he worked it, pork was no dirty word in West Virginny, without Byrd in the Senate the past five decades, just imagine what a miserable shit hole West Virginia would be today.

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  83. Dorothy said on June 28, 2010 at 8:37 am

    brian I was in Columbus on Saturday to attend the Clippers game with my mom (who was visiting for the week), a 15 year old nephew, also visiting for the week, my hubby and son. We left at 9:15 from the game and got to our car just before the huge rains hit – thank goodness we did since we were using a wheelchair to transport Mom. I’ve never seen so much cloud-to-cloud lightening before! We also saw huge crowds on the streets, part of the Com Fest overflow I guess. Mike was trying to find an alternate way to get on 71 North to avoid the ballpark crowd, hence our getting mired down by the Com Fest people.

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  84. brian stouder said on June 28, 2010 at 10:10 am

    One funny thing was that USA Today (free at the hotel) had a big feature on how college towns and state capitals are recession-proof; they miss the big booms, and they miss the big busts (insert ComFest big bust joke here), and roll along.

    Indeed, Columbus provided proof on both counts. We learned (at COSI) that Columbus was once known as “Buggy Capital of the World”, owing to all the buggy manufacturers they had.

    Next time, we shall have to see if we can’t swing by David Davis’s alma mater, and do Taco Bell (or whatever) with Dorothy and Jeff

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