Heat, begone.

If you live on the east coast, the heat won’t last much longer. I know, because it came to you from Michigan, and it is being chased out to sea by a cold front that swept through Saturday night. Lotsa wind, lotsa wind-related headaches, mainly power outages. We kept ours, but lost our internet — twice.

You’ll cool off soon enough. Hope you don’t lose your internet in the bargain

So with that in mind, and because I worked most of today, and “Big Little Lies” is coming on in 14 minutes, so just two bits of the bloggage today:

First, the full, 16-minute-plus projection of “Apollo 50” on the Washington Monument and a few other screens in D.C. the other night. There’s an every-other-year light-installation festival in Detroit called D-lectricity that is starting to get some works like this, but nothing this impressive. Absolutely worth your time.

And a Spin magazine look at the 40-year anniversary of “Aja,” my once and forever favorite Steely Dan record. Yes, pretentious, yes, full of itself, yes, you get the feeling the album cover was black so you could better see the inevitable lines of cocaine laid thereon, but I still love it.

With that, I must go and embrace the week ahead. Enjoy yours.

Posted at 8:59 pm in Popculch |

105 responses to “Heat, begone.”

  1. Deborah said on July 21, 2019 at 9:22 pm

    Today LB and I went to the Abiquiu Chamber music concert that we have season tickets to. It was miserably hot, we sit outside usually, under umbrellas. This time there was no breeze whatsoever and it got up to 94°. I have never been so miserably hot in NM before. We left at intermission. I couldn’t imagine sitting there for another hour. Besides the program wasn’t so great this time, a pianist and a soprano, meh.

    We went to the cabin to check things out. The plants we planted are still alive as one of our neighbors watered them for us while we were in France. My weather app says it’s supposed to rain each day for the next 5 or 6 days and it’s going to be cooler.

    I’m sitting on the patio in Santa Fe now and our neighbor’s tree is raining apricots. They aren’t good apricots to eat unfortunately, very mealy.

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  2. Joe Kobiela said on July 21, 2019 at 9:24 pm

    Front blew thru Auburn around 6:30 and we picked up a inch of rain along with thunder and lightning, sat out back on the screened in porch and enjoyed mother nature’s work.
    Pilot Joe

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  3. Connie said on July 21, 2019 at 10:55 pm

    We lost power for 24 hours, thankfully just as the weather broke. Without wifi you can’t even check the dte outage map.

    We have been looking at houses and it is surprising how many ranch houses are not fully wheel chair accessible, usually due to steps down into a family room. The only house still on the list is in my current so so neighborhood. Two issues: no basement and across the street from an elementary school.

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  4. jcburns said on July 22, 2019 at 12:36 am

    All of my dime dancing is definitely through.

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  5. ROGirl said on July 22, 2019 at 5:10 am

    I got through the storms without losing power, unlike the many other times it has gone out, so that was a good thing.

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  6. alex said on July 22, 2019 at 7:07 am

    The last place I ever expected to see Timothy Goeglein published again:


    Still redolent of apple-cheeked Hoosier drippiness, and as far as anyone knows, not lifted wholesale from some obscure scholarly journal. He’s hyping a new book: A simplistic prescription for restoring Ronald Reagan’s shining city on a hill, and it calls to mind the lyrics of “MacArthur Park,” probably as good a source from which to crib as any.

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  7. alex said on July 22, 2019 at 7:16 am

    Or, to give him the benefit of the doubt, maybe Goeglein was inspired by Crank Yankers…


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  8. Deborah said on July 22, 2019 at 7:54 am

    A great story about the heat in NYC told in tweets https://mobile.twitter.com/CAwkward/status/1152396175875723265

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  9. Linda said on July 22, 2019 at 9:07 am

    Alex @6:

    That was not only dripping with corn, but the opposite of reality. The problem is not that I have not communicated with my Trump relatives and friends, but that I now know them a lot better. I used to believe that we had the same basic values and sense of right and wrong. But I was mistaken. I wish to Hell I could unknow what I now know about them.

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  10. Julie Robinson said on July 22, 2019 at 9:10 am

    Not wasting any of my time or clicks on Goeglein or the N-S.

    It was 68° last time I looked; what a difference 24 hours makes. I was up earlier than usual, waiting to hear back about an emergency vet’s appointment for Mom’s cat. Kitty started sneezing and coughing late Friday night, threw up Saturday, and isn’t eating or running around like a crazy cat. Pleaseohpleaseohplease let it be nothing big.

    Connie, I’ve been educated about accessible buildings these last few years with my sister and mom, and the progress is abysmal. Even our own house, a ranch with the laundry room on the main level, has drawbacks–stairs up from outside or the garage, regular tub with high walls, regular height toilets instead of high. I never realized the problems until I had regular visitors with access issues.

    Recently built public buildings are often no better, and as far as cities like NYC, stairs are everywhere. Most museums have an accessible entrance but finding it is a treasure hunt. Buses have stairs, subways have stairs, and the ones with elevators or escalators were often out of order. Navigating your way is exhausting,

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  11. Jeff Borden said on July 22, 2019 at 9:52 am

    The heat index at Wrigley Field on Saturday was 104 degrees. Yesterday, wearing shorts and a T-shirt, I had to buy a cheap sweatshirt from a sidewalk vendor to stay warm. Life in the Midwest.

    Today, there is fallout from a racist and Islamaphobic post on Facebook by the Illinois Republican County Chairmen’s Association, which created a movie poster-style graphic of the four women of color who have so scrambled the brains of the GOP. It’s labeled “The Jihad Squad,” of course. Top GOPers are issuing statements that this was an unauthorized post and, of course, they don’t agree with the depiction of the four Congresswomen. Yeah. Right.


    This is why I will never vote for a Republican again. The moral core of the party is rotten and diseased from top to bottom.

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  12. basset said on July 22, 2019 at 9:59 am

    Thought we’d found a house but the inspection discovered all of the big 3 problems: termites, mold, and water leaks, as well as a whole bunch of smaller issues. We’re looking for a one-story too.

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  13. basset said on July 22, 2019 at 10:07 am

    Talked with one of our district Council candidates before early voting the other day, not the one we support… recent mailing from her supporters called the sitting, progressive Council member a “radical,” and of course her own mail starts by reminding everyone that he moved here from San Francisco, California. Asked her why that was important and all I could get out of her was “well, it’s TRUE.” Hatefulness abounds… she’ll get the angry vote.

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  14. Connie said on July 22, 2019 at 12:12 pm

    Julie, we were visiting my husband’s cousin in Cadillac and I had to call him for help to get up off a very low toilet. I use a commode seat over our home toilet, the seat is high, and it has arm rests to push on when you get up. When they start teaching prostheses wearers how to walk the first thing they tell you is to find a place to push on to get from a seated to a standing position.

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  15. Jakash said on July 22, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    We’re still hanging on, but I’ve just about had it with The Handmaid’s Tale. Last week’s episode — #9, for those scoring at home — took place almost entirely in one hospital room. It was as if somebody who’s pretty pleased with themselves thought — “Watch this — we’re gonna do a whole hour in a hospital room.” If they thought they could prove that the show is so good that they can make that interesting, they failed, IMHO. The entire season could be summarized by a 30-second shot focusing on Elizabeth Moss’s determined (or angry or crying or bitter or surly…) face. She’s a marvelous actress, but if this episode didn’t feature at least 15 minutes of just her kneeling on the floor or close-ups of her face, I’d be surprised. Uh, a little of that goes a long way — and they’ve gone to Nebraska and back, with little indication that they’re going to be stopping now.

    On the upside — in reading an online synopsis, I learned a new (for me) term: bottle episode. “A ‘bottle episode’ is designed to take up as little money as possible. The easiest way to go about this is to use only the regular cast (or even just part of the regular cast) and set it in a single location…”

    This website says: “The Star Trek cast and crew call this a ‘ship-in-a-bottle’ episode, which is where the name originated.”


    Wikipedia says: “The term ‘bottle show’ was coined by Leslie Stevens, the creator and executive producer of the 60s TV series, The Outer Limits, for an episode made in very little time at very little cost, ‘as in pulling an episode right out of a bottle like a genie.’ The earliest known use of ‘bottle episode’ is 2003.”


    I don’t really care which of those is right — I just know I’ll take Seinfeld’s “Chinese Restaurant” over Epidode 9 — “Heroic” — any day.

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  16. Julie Robinson said on July 22, 2019 at 12:43 pm

    Connie, I’ve been there and done that with my sis. You do what you have to do. In Orlando we replaced the toilets with dual-flush models so we got the tall versions, and I think we all like them better.

    Edited to add that I still haven’t watched season two of Handmaid’s Tale, and am more interested in preserving my mental health.

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  17. Deborah said on July 22, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    Accessibility used to be talked about a lot among designers when the ADA was passed but after a while it was something designers tried to circumvent whenever possible. LB was in a wheelchair last summer because of her hip problem, it became very clear how woefully inadequate Santa Fe is for people with disabilities to get around.

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  18. Deborah said on July 22, 2019 at 1:00 pm

    Accessibility used to be talked about a lot among designers when the ADA was passed but after a while it was something designers tried to circumvent whenever possible. LB was in a wheelchair last summer because of her hip problem, it became very clear how woefully inadequate Santa Fe is for people with disabilities.

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  19. Deborah said on July 22, 2019 at 1:01 pm

    Weird. How did I get 2 similar comments?

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  20. beb said on July 22, 2019 at 2:09 pm

    We’re two days without power. I’m writing from a Starbucks because life without the Internet sucks. Also life without A/C, lights, fans, etc. After the first night we make a trek to a hardware store where we picked up a battery powered lamp, 1000 lumens. Runs in 4 D-cells but man does it put out the light. Also found some battery powered personal fans. 5″ blades, enough to sense some air movement. Those rub on AAA batteries. Surprisingly those batteries can keep it going all night, which helped to get some sleep. I’m still feeling sleep-deprived. Starbucks is sufficently cool and comfortable I might just fall asleep in mid-post.

    At least we have a couple of large coolers left over from a previous power outage to pack our food into. The damanble part of this is that our neighbors across the street still have their power. They never lose power while our side of the street frequently lose power!

    On this whole “America, love or leave it” thing I can’t help thinking that the people who go around telling people to “go back where you can from” are the ones who don;t love America. Maybe they’re the ones who go back to where they came from.

    When someone tells the President that ISIS killed her mother and six brothers and then President immediately “where are they now.” I think it’s time to have a cognistive evaluation of said president.

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  21. Bitter Scribe said on July 22, 2019 at 2:26 pm

    Never heard of this Goeglein before. God, what a weenie. I wonder if he was so anodyne and conciliatory during the Obama years?

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  22. Deborah said on July 22, 2019 at 5:17 pm

    Bitter, you need to go back and read Nancy’s Goeglien story, it’s epic.

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  23. Suzanne said on July 22, 2019 at 5:59 pm

    Tim Geoglein is how I found this blog a few years ago. I was trying to remember what the scandal was that got him in trouble, searched his name, and ended up here.
    I won’t be buying his book. His discussion of it reeks of “you all need to get out of your bubbles and see how great people like me are so you can think like me, pray like me, and live like me” and then everyone will get along fine. He’s a David Brooks wannabe. Maybe he’ll ditch his wife soon, too!

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  24. alex said on July 22, 2019 at 6:11 pm

    Bitter, I didn’t realize you hadn’t been around for Goeglein. He’s the one Nancy discovered was a plagiarist simply by googling some of his tortured prose and then snarking about it on this very blog. Goeglein got fired from the White House over it. Back when integrity (or at least seemliness) still mattered in the executive branch. He was Dubya’s liaison to the religious right.

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  25. alex said on July 22, 2019 at 7:39 pm

    Don’t want to spoil the story for anyone who is unfamiliar with it, but it was quickly discovered that there was virtually nothing that Goeglein had ever published that hadn’t been largely copied verbatim from the work of other writers.

    From the deep dusty archives:


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  26. alex said on July 22, 2019 at 10:37 pm

    Just emerged from that rabbit hole and its 500+ comments. Amazing to see how trolls and gaslighting were making inroads even back then and yet they still hadn’t fucked everything into total cognitive dissonance and chaos. My takeaway, though, is that the liberal tendency to take the high road and engage in good faith in discourse with people acting in bad faith is a losing proposition. This is where Barack Obama and Jimmy Carter lost the PR/image fight in the annals of history. Better to call bullshit what it is and forsake social graces. When they take the low road and you take the high road, you’ll find yourself atop a pyre. Better to simply be the sharper knife in the knife fight, and when you’re dealing with Republicans you’ve already won more than half that battle.

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  27. Dorothy said on July 23, 2019 at 12:49 am

    Tomorrow (I mean later today when I’m at work) I’ll click on your link to the Washington Monument video, but I’d already seen a few short clips of it because my daughter attended in person last Friday. She could not say enough praise about it. Said it was the best thing she’d done in D.C. since moving to the area nearly two years ago.

    My knee replacement was 6 years ago but I still like to have something to push up on to get off the throne, Connie. My arthritic feet and other wonky knee just need the support. It’s not going to get any better as I age. When Mike fell off a ladder in 2006 and used a wheel chair for a couple months we were made aware of the woeful state of conveniences for disabled folk.

    I’m up because I had something in my eye an hour ago and Visine didn’t help much. So a warm wet wash cloth held on the eye seems to have helped a lot. I’m going to try and go back to sleep now.

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  28. Dexter Friend said on July 23, 2019 at 1:37 am

    The News-Sentinel. My cousin handed me a big box of old family letters and cards and little kids’ books and atop it was a pristine edition of the November 22, 1963 paper, unopened, folded crisply. I had copies of that date of the Journal-Gazette and some others, but I made the mistake of storing them in a shed and the squirrels shredded them. This one, featuring Kennedy’s death of course (fast news…evening paper) , I am going to try to give it my daughter to preserve for my granddaughter for a future show-and-tell or something…if they say no, I’ll just donate it to some library. I also noticed a kids’ novelette…thick, orange cover, perfect condition, large print, a cowboy story…I think the copyright must be around 1880…It’s only maybe 4 inches by 3 inches…might check ebay…it’s in flawless condition.

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  29. Linda said on July 23, 2019 at 5:35 am

    Re: accessibility: nearly 30 years after ADA the whole country is still hard to navigate. My sister gets around in a scooter, and you have to double check what the “handicapped seat means,” or where it will be in relation to the companion seat. I got tickets for a bunch of us to go to Detroit next month for a concert, and it took an hour of calling to nail down that particular point. The venue sells through Ticketmaster, and they have a special number to buy disabled tickets, but they couldn’t guarantee that the seat would be *next* to the companion’s seat, since they sell to a lot of venues. That meant a call to Detroit, and I got a guy’s name and cell phone number to call just before the event to be sure. That’s the best I can do.

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  30. Linda said on July 23, 2019 at 8:21 am

    Off topic, but a natural consequence of the cheap online content mills that have replaced real journalism and how the most famous pedo played them: https://www.nytimes.com/2019/07/21/business/media/jeffrey-epstein-media.html

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  31. Connie said on July 23, 2019 at 8:38 am

    So Beb, I’ve got power and a shower out here in Walled Lake.

    The handicapped seating at the Fox Theatre is a standard chair placed at the far left of the theater seating Missed a chunk of the left side of The Sound of Music. I would be happy with an aisle seat as long as the aisle was on my right.

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  32. Julie Robinson said on July 23, 2019 at 9:22 am

    Many times the wheelchair seating will only allow one person to accompany that seat, which isn’t so fun if you have a group that wants to experience an event together. We’ve also learned that calling ahead doesn’t always help; six people will give you six different answers, none of them correct.

    Two years ago we went to the beach with my sister, having called ahead to ascertain a beach wheelchair. When we got there we were told that not only did they not have one, no such thing existed. She loved going to the beach so much, and when she lived further south (and was healthier), would often stop there for a few minutes on her way home from work, just to relax. She’d so looked forward to this as getting anywhere had become quite a chore and she was become isolated and depressed.

    So we pulled the car up as close as we could and two of us walked her out there, slowly and painfully. She stood in the water for a few minutes, hanging on to her helper, and I snapped a couple of pictures.

    It was her last beach visit. Three weeks later she died. I’m so glad we took the effort, but angry at the lies/incompetence of so many about access.

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  33. Connie said on July 23, 2019 at 11:58 am

    Many of the Michigan state parks are adding beach wheelchairs. The trick is knowing where to find them. We have been going to the Island Streams State Recreation Area which has two lakes. One has a wheelchair mat on the beach and into the water. I haven’t tried that yet. The other lake has a concrete sidewalk into the water and I just wheeled myself right in and then fell off the wheelchair. Sleeping Bear Dunes has just announced the addition of a motorized track wheel chair which I would love to try. Must be reserved in advance.

    Getting a free used/beat up old wheelchair from the senior center helped me be comfortable with rolling it into the water. Your local senior center probably has closets filled with donated wheelchairs if you need one.

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  34. Scout said on July 23, 2019 at 1:11 pm

    We just returned from a weekend in LA with the sons, the highlight of which was Huntington Gardens for high tea on Saturday. I love the weather in LA, but not the traffic. It’s ridiculous how long it takes to get anywhere. On the way back to Phx it looked kind of monsoon-y and sure enough, we did finally have our first storm last night. Usually they start the last week of June, first week of July. Climate change, it is real.

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  35. beb said on July 23, 2019 at 1:40 pm

    I saw a picture just recently of wheelchairs with big fat tires. They were described as beach wheelchairs but I have my doubts about practical they are. On soil, which is pretty hard packed, they would do find but most beach sand is pretty soft. Even with fat tires I think they would get bogged down. That said I applaud the people who had wheelchairs with fat tires that can get people to a lot of places where narrow tired chaiirs can’t go.

    Julie, I’d glad you were able to get your sister to the beach one last time. I’m sure she appreciated all the effort and it gave you a warm memory to remember her by.

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  36. Scout said on July 23, 2019 at 5:06 pm

    Oh and speaking of Steely Dan, I liked Aja, but I LOVED Countdown to Ecstasy. Matter of fact, we listened to the whole album on the drive home from LA yesterday. I still remember vividly how blown away I was the first time I heard The Boston Rag.

    I tend to have the deepest connection to the first album I fell in love with by any band, even if I like all their music. Ziggy Stardust, Dark Side of the Moon, Led Zeppelin IV, Rumours, Aqualung, Goats Head Soup, Crime of the Century, Fumbling Towards Ecstasy all come to mind.

    Another album we listened to on the way home was Scarlet’s Walk by Tori Amos, easily one of the best theme albums ever and my favorite of hers, although not the first I fell in love with, which was Little Earthquakes. There are always exceptions.

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  37. Bitter Scribe said on July 23, 2019 at 5:10 pm

    Alex, thanks for that link. Wow. I’ve seen some “plagiarism” cases where the evidence seemed ambivalent at best, but there was nothing ambivalent about that.

    Although if the linked article by this guy is his usual standard of writing, no wonder he needs to steal.

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  38. LAMary said on July 24, 2019 at 9:26 am

    Scout, next time in LA, you know where my neighborhood is.
    I have an SD card in my car and all these albums we’re mentioning are loaded. My commute is much faster thanks to the music. I’ll add Dire Straits and REM and a couple of random covers I love: the performance of Comfortably Numb at the Berlin Wall with Robbie Robertson and Van Morrison and Eric Clapton doing While My Guitar Gently Weeps at the Concert for George. I’d also recommend Desmond Dekker doing Israelites and the Skatalites version of the Guns of Navarone theme.

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  39. Sherri said on July 24, 2019 at 10:29 am

    You may remember Amanda Knox, the woman who battled an Italian conviction for murder. She’s asking for help now. To pay for her space-themed wedding.


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  40. Joe Kobiela said on July 24, 2019 at 11:02 am

    Travel tip,
    Just spent the night in Bend Oregon, 48 degrees this morning with no humidity was almost cold on my run
    What a beautiful area didn’t know east Oregon was high desert would like to come back and tour some time.
    Pilot Joe

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  41. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 11:08 am

    I assume that like me, some of you are watching the Mueller testimony. It’s going the way that was expected in my mind anyway. The MSNBC pundits don’t think it’s going well for the Dems because Mueller is only saying “yes”, “no” or ” “I defer to what it says in the report” etc instead of framing the narrative in Mueller’s own words. But the narrative is being reiterated by the Democratic reps. It’s interesting to hear the questions of the Republicans, hearing their spin on the facts is far fetched, especially Matt Goetz’s remarks.

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  42. Julie Robinson said on July 24, 2019 at 11:35 am

    I had to turn it off after the fourth or fifth grandstander/inquisitor because I could feel my blood pressure rise. The second guy in particular was just bullying Mueller and making him appear a shambling old guy. It wasn’t helped by his confusion about whether to stand or sit, or his apparent need for hearing aides. I’ll catch the tidbits when it’s over.

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  43. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 12:57 pm

    Wow, Shiff is good.

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  44. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 12:59 pm


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  45. Jakash said on July 24, 2019 at 1:41 pm

    Neil Steinberg’s blog post today is about H. L. Mencken. Bracing, indeed. I’ll post one quote, but he includes 3 others from Mencken’s book “Prejudices: Third Series.” It’s as if H. L. had been asked his opinion of the “Cletus Safari” strain of post-2016 journalism…

    “The peasant has a great practical cunning, but he is unable to see any further than the next farm. He likes money and knows how to amass property, but his cultural development is but little above that of the domestic animals. He is intensely and cocksurely moral, but his morality and his self-interest are crudely identical. He is emotional and easy to scare, but his imagination cannot grasp an abstraction. He is a violent nationalist and patriot, but he admires rogues in office and always beat the tax-collector if he can. He has immovable opinions about all the great affairs of state, but nine-tenths of them are sheer imbecilities. He is violently jealous of what he conceives to be his rights, but brutally disregardful of the other fellow’s. He is religious, but his religion is wholly devoid of beauty and dignity….He exists in all countries, but here alone he rules—here alone his anthropoid fears and rages are accepted gravely as logical ideas and dissent from them is punished a a sort of public offense.”


    Counterpoint: Our internet buddy, Bitter Scribe, commented on the post and is not impressed by Mencken.

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  46. Scout said on July 24, 2019 at 3:43 pm

    I love Alexandra Petri.

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  47. beb said on July 24, 2019 at 4:35 pm

    I”d seen early comments on the Mueller testimony and greatly disappointed by it. It seems commentators are less interested in what Mueller is actually saying and just rating this as a horse-race with “expectations.” Since there are no smoking gun revelations that weren’t already in the report this testimony is regarded as a dud, never mind that the revelations in the report were devastating and damning. Trump is right that the media is the enemy of the people, he’s just wrong about why. He thinks the media is against him. What he doesn’t acknowledge is how much the media covers up and excuses his awfulness.

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  48. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 4:43 pm

    Scout, thanks for that link, I have bookmarked Alexandra Petri. I’d be interested in knowing who other people here find interesting on Twitter. I read the Twitter accounts of the following people: our Nancy, Chris Hayes, David Simon, Laura Lippmann, Kyle Griffin, David Farenthold, Anand Giridharadas, AOC, Preet Bhahara, Joyce Vance White, our Scout, Matthew Miller, Patton Oswalt, Molly Jong Fast and many more. I don’t “follow “anyone because you have to sign up for a Twitter account to do that, I just bookmark the Twitter accounts.

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  49. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 4:52 pm

    Beb, I agree to what I think you are saying, that the pundits are getting it wrong. I think Mueller came off damning for Trump. I don’t think they are necessarily excusing Trump’s awfulness, I think they’re just making incorrect assumptions about what impressions ordinary people (like me) are making.

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  50. Connie said on July 24, 2019 at 5:45 pm

    I love Molly Jong-Fast on Twitter. (her mother is Erica Jong!) I found her when she did liberal coverage of CPAC – for a conservative magazine!

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  51. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 5:54 pm

    Connie, yes I knew that Molly Jong Fast was Erica Jong’s daughter. I read Fear of Flying back in the day but I was never a fan of Erica Jong.

    It keeps acting like it’s going to rain in Santa Fe lately, but then it doesn’t happen. It needs it.

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  52. Deborah said on July 24, 2019 at 6:18 pm

    The narrative about Trump by Schiff that I think has long legs is: disloyalty to country, greed, and lies.

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  53. Scout said on July 24, 2019 at 6:52 pm

    Deborah – your bookmarks are all good ones. I also like


    And so many more, but those were the ones I could think of off hand.

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  54. alex said on July 24, 2019 at 7:07 pm

    Mencken’s description of the American peasant is about as spot-on a description of Trump voters as any I’ve ever seen.

    Wonder how Fox is spinning today’s not-revelations but maybe I shouldn’t care. I’ll be seeing them on Facebook soon enough I’m sure. I married into the peasantry.

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  55. David C. said on July 24, 2019 at 8:25 pm

    Here are a few of the people I follow on Twitter who haven’t been mentioned.


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  56. Sherri said on July 24, 2019 at 8:34 pm

    Many people here disagreed with me when I said Al Franken should resign. This Jane Mayer piece in the New Yorker seems designed to plead his case, but if anything, it convinced me that yes, Franken was right to resign.


    Al Franken is not a victim. He was not denied due process. He resigned from the Senate; he wasn’t sent to jail. It doesn’t matter to me if the first accuser was a setup. She wasn’t the only accuser, and Franken doesn’t seem to understand what the problem is, because he can only see the harm he suffered, not the harm he caused.

    The benefit of having been raised Southern Baptist is that you completely understand how people can be Good People and still cause great harm without understanding or accepting it. Al Franken is not an evil monster, and nothing is preventing him from serving his country or community. He also needed to resign.

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  57. JodiP said on July 24, 2019 at 9:41 pm

    Sherri, I completely agree with you. I had read a critique of that article you cited, and was disgusted. Sure, Franken wasn’t trafficking teen girls, but I have yet to have multiple allegations that I’ve “accidentally” grabbed someone’s ass or shoved my tongue in their mouth. It’s always disheartening to see how many of my fellow Minnesotans leap to his defense.

    Meanwhile one of our Congressional reps has opened up an ethics probe against Ilhan Omar over some tax mistake she has corrected and paid for. If only he were as upset of the detention of children! Or a hundred other things that are going on.

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  58. alex said on July 24, 2019 at 10:24 pm

    Sorry, but the premeditation and malice of installing a remote button to lock your doors to capture unsuspecting victims, or to put sedatives in drinks, or to unexpectedly get naked, or to threaten someone’s livelihood, that’s just not the same thing as raunchy horseplay by an improv comedian. There’s a world of difference between being cold-blooded and being insensitive, and if Kirsten Gillibrand can’t make or communicate such distinctions, then she’s no better than Matt Lauer or Charlie Rose or any of them as far as I’m concerned. She threw Franken under the bus out of her own white-hot ambition.

    I came away from that article with a very different impression, obviously. I guess I’m not as all-in with the #metoo movement as I thought I was because if it doesn’t recognize such distinctions then it’s nothing more than a mob with pitchforks that doesn’t care who gets gored as long as its bloodlust is satisfied. And that’s my two cents’ worth.

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  59. alex said on July 24, 2019 at 11:14 pm

    Oh, and I have about as much respect for congressional Democrats as I do their Republican couterparts. They’re fucking cowards.

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  60. Suzanne said on July 25, 2019 at 12:02 am

    I would add Sarah Kendzior(@sarahkendzior) to the list of Twitter pundits. She’s studied authoritarianism and has been pretty much right about all things Trump.

    That Mencken quote about peasants does sum up the Trump voter. Absolutely.

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  61. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 25, 2019 at 12:11 am

    Late to this end of the thread, but I’ve been on the road; the Goeglein episode and the trolls to which Alex refers are how I picked up the parenthetical addition to my name. Not that Jeff Borden isn’t mellow enough ofttimes, but a new just Jeff started popping in with rants about the cruelty we were inflicting on Mr. G and I added the TMMO part just to make it clear “that’s not me, friends!”

    Des Moines in the summertime is . . . interesting. And I am heartbroken that I had to leave town before seeing Deborah’s work at the World Food Hall of Fame, truly. It just never worked out; I was helping my 85 year old dad enjoy one of our church organization’s biennial assemblies, and it was probably the last one we’ll attend together after four over the last few decades. For everyone commenting on accessibility — we still have a ways to go.

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  62. Sherri said on July 25, 2019 at 12:23 am

    I think if you regard what Franken did as merely being insensitive, then no, you aren’t as all-in with #metoo as you perhaps thought.


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  63. Suzanne said on July 25, 2019 at 12:48 am

    And this happened today:

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  64. beb said on July 25, 2019 at 1:35 am

    Kevin Drum makes an interesting analysis of the Al Franken accusers. The first one was obviously a rat-f*cker but of the rest, two provided photographs of the events were they said Franken groped them. One shows Franken leaning across a a table for the picture making it impossible that he could have cupped her breast as claimed. In the other photo the woman says he grabbed her ass but it looks as if Franken’s shoulder is in front of the woman, which again makes it hard for him to have grabbed her. The remaining woman have no photos and in most cases were in public places with lots of people who could have noticed what was going on but didn’t. From this Drum concludes that there was no credible case against. And interestingly, once Franlen resigned there were no more accusers coming forward. If Franken was the groper he was accused of being more sureky would have come forward. Finally Drum notes that were was never the whispering of allegations against Franken as there were about Weinberg, or Epstein, Lauder and others. There was more of a whispering campaign against Biden then against Franken.

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  65. alex said on July 25, 2019 at 1:44 am

    Sherri, I didn’t find the Beast piece convincing. I think Mayer made a very compelling case that Tweeden pulled a hit job and Franken’s colleagues piled on and defiled his corpse. Because eight more women. Eight more women whose “privacy” matters more than Franken’s good name. Franken called for due process and never got it. The Beast writer has no business criticizing Mayer’s journalism if she doesn’t address this glaring fact. We have no way of knowing whether some or all of the allegations following Tweeden’s weren’t also made in bad faith.

    I’m perfectly in agreement that allegations of abuse should always be taken seriously, but I’m also a fervent believer that the accused should always get a fair hearing. Given Mayer’s revelations, I’m not convinced that Franken is guilty of anything except maybe standing in the way of some of his colleagues’ presidential aspirations.

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  66. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 9:38 am

    Yay graphic designers! https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/trump-us-seal-golf-russia-turning-points

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  67. Sherri said on July 25, 2019 at 9:58 am

    Nobody is owed due process for their privilege. The government was taking anything from Franken, which is the only time the words “due process” should be mentioned. Maybe it was unfair, but Franken wasn’t owed due process, and yet, even so, he could have stayed for an investigation had he chosen and received his due process.

    Why didn’t he? One assumes because he didn’t want to go through the wringer. Not an unreasonable choice, one that those women whose privacy you value less than Franken’s reputation, also made.

    Kevin Drum’s Zapruder film deconstruction of Franken’s interactions misses the point of what I read in the Mayer article. I can believe that Franken intends nothing sexual in his interactions. I can also believe that they women felt otherwise. The power differential matters. Maybe men can’t see it, because they’re not used to being on the wrong end of that power dynamic, but if people felt free to kiss and put hands on them without consent in all sorts of situations, they might begin to grasp it.

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  68. Julie Robinson said on July 25, 2019 at 10:16 am

    Yes, all of what Sherri says. Franken also still doesn’t get that what he did wasn’t harmless. And I say this as a big fan of his from way, way back. This time he wasn’t good enough, he wasn’t smart enough, and doggone it, people don’t like his actions.

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  69. alex said on July 25, 2019 at 11:26 am

    Maybe it was unfair, but Franken wasn’t owed due process, and yet, even so, he could have stayed for an investigation had he chosen and received his due process.

    From my reading of Mayer’s piece, Franken wanted an investigation and fully expected it to happen. Schumer told him it wasn’t going to happen and that he needed to resign by 5 PM or be stripped of his assignments. I forget whatever else was threatened but it was clear that Franken’s career was over.

    I’m not sure what you mean by “nobody is owed due process for their privilege.”

    To me Franken looks more like a casualty of hysteria than a person who deserved to have his career and reputation ruined. I totally get that unwelcome touching is unwelcome, sexualized or no, but you’d think he committed aggravated battery or rape the way his (and Mayer’s) detractors are fulminating.

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  70. Scout said on July 25, 2019 at 12:44 pm

    I am a #metoo advocate all the way, but I am in the camp that Franken was railroaded out of office because he was making too many Republicans uncomfortable with his intense questioning style. I may be in the minority with my opinion among the women here, but nothing that was presented made a solid case against him. Right or wrong, Franken is the reason many Dems will never get behind Gillibrand, which is ironic because many feel she was trying to set her campaign around the #metoo theme using Franken as the poster child for her platform.

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  71. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 12:58 pm

    I have to admit I’m with Scout and Alex on Franken. While hearing about his tongue kissing and bottom touching is disgusting, there has been much, much worse done out there that never gets dealt with (Trump). That doesn’t mean Franken shouldn’t have offered a huge apology to his “victims” but getting kicked out of the Senate was a bit much. IMO.

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  72. Jakash said on July 25, 2019 at 1:00 pm

    Well, it’s dumb for me to jump into this hornet’s nest, but I’d have to say that I’m with alex and Scout with regard to Franken.

    Franken called for an investigation and was then promptly railroaded out, as noted. There were reasons for that, but this dynamic of Dems eating their own while Reps circle the wagons seems a tad problematic in how it’s working out.

    Losing his Senate seat is definitely far from the death penalty, I agree. Still, does anyone believe that if there had been a Republican governor in Minnesota appointing the next Senator, that Dems would have been so prompt in sending Franken packing? There’s a lot of politics involved, of course.

    I don’t know what the truth is about some of these charges, but the extent to which Tweeden’s seems politically motivated and riddled with problems is deeply disturbing. The end of the Daily Beast article that Sherri posted: “It’s not a matter of accepting without scrutiny a woman’s narrative over any other. It’s a matter of giving the woman a chance to have her narrative considered—something that is, indeed, quite a new development, and one that many of us are clearly struggling to come to terms with.”

    Indeed. I’ve seen that concept presented like “It’s not necessarily ‘believe women,’ but definitely ‘listen to women’ is the minimum of what’s required.” Seems to me that Franken was more than willing to have these charges listened to and evaluated by his peers in a fairer setting than the Twitterverse or presidential-hopefuls’ press conferences.

    All that being said, I don’t think his own remarks to the reporter come off very well in the New Yorker article, and I’m creeped out by his alleged kissiness, too. I imagine that if I’d resigned a Senate seat and regretted it, I’d be pretty depressed, as well, though. As I believed when this first was in the news — I just wish that there could be a dynamic where we have proportional responses to various transgressions. Him being censured, if deemed appropriate after an investigation? Sure. Him having to resign because of these incidents seemed disproportionate to me. Especially in a country presided over by the Pussy-grabber – in – Chief.

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  73. Jakash said on July 25, 2019 at 1:07 pm

    All the Twitter recommendations are solid, but they’re mostly so serious. For snarky, R-rated fun, the gold standard seems to be OhNoSheTwitnt, IMHO. A recent example: “Boris Johnson sounds like a name Trump would give his penis.”

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  74. Sherri said on July 25, 2019 at 2:54 pm

    What I mean is that due process is only an obligation of the government in a legal proceeding. Of course there were politics involved in Franken’s resignation. He held a political position. Politics aren’t some dirty tactic that bad people use, politics is how values get worked out in society. Gillibrand’s ambition is seen as bad, but Franken’s ambition isn’t.

    I think Franken is a Good Guy, just clueless about this. I also think he’s not indispensable.
    If he couldn’t even fight back against Chuck Schumer, then how good a politician was he?

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  75. Jakash said on July 25, 2019 at 3:42 pm

    I don’t think he’s indispensable, either. Part of being a Good Guy was that he took one for the team, when much of the team told him he had to go.

    I just think that, in working out the values of society, a more deliberative team could have arrived at a lesser reprimand than him having to leave the Senate.

    You know who’s a good politician? Mitch McConnell. That guy is aces. Such a fair-minded guy, too. (Insert vomiting emoji here.)

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  76. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 4:43 pm

    When I was in Sault, the lavender capital of France, I was given this really beautiful thing by a shopkeeper, called a lavender wand, that I had never seen before. LB and I looked it up online and then watched You Tube videos to find out how to make them. They’re not that hard but they do take practice. We have a lot of lavender in our side garden in Santa Fe so we’re in the process of making these things. LB is much better at making them than I am.

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  77. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 4:46 pm

    Lavender wands https://www.etsy.com/listing/241834704/lavender-wands-beautiful-protection-for?gpla=1&gao=1&utm_campaign=shopping_us_LadyDanio_sfc_osa&utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=google&utm_custom1=0&utm_content=5421708&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI-tem-vfQ4wIVQdbACh07cgX8EAQYASABEgIl_PD_BwE#

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  78. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 4:47 pm

    Whoa, sorry about that long url.

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  79. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 7:26 pm

    Another Twitter account that I’ve found is our own JC. I just found it yesterday, because JC follows a design writer that I always try to keep up with and he commented on a thread of hers that I clicked on, so now I know he has an account and I bookmarked it.

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  80. David C. said on July 25, 2019 at 7:27 pm

    Way off topic, but I just spent 40 minutes getting through a gridlocked roundabout. We were only about ten cars back. I understand the theory behind them (slower speeds, more fender bender crashes but fewer serious ones), but when they fail they’re a nightmare.

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  81. Deborah said on July 25, 2019 at 9:29 pm

    Roundabouts are ubiquitous in the south of France. They seemed to be every kilometer. Most of them were innocuous and easy but some of them were multi-laned and terrifying. French drivers tended to take more chances with passing on curves etc than I was comfortable with.

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  82. Sherri said on July 26, 2019 at 1:48 am

    I think this is a pretty good analysis. I’m someone who is a fringe Boomer, born in 1962, but my leanings are with the Millennials.


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  83. David C. said on July 26, 2019 at 6:04 am

    It’s sad when to get a better life I have to wait for the older cohorts of my generation to die, but there your have it. I’m with the Millennials too.

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  84. Linda said on July 26, 2019 at 6:47 am

    From the Atlantic article:

    “We’ve both seen successive promises made by the Boomer elites go horrifically wrong. If you are our age—he’s 33 and I’m 31—the great events that shape your worldview are not a series of Western triumphs, but a succession of spectacular failures”

    There are 50,000 boomers who would disagree with this, but they died in the Vietnam War, so they are unavailable for comment. Vietnam was a huge failure created by a previous generation, as was stagflation in the 70s. Millennials have some legitimate complaints, but not a monopoly on trouble.

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  85. alex said on July 26, 2019 at 6:59 am

    “A Reagan revolution in reverse.” I think the Atlantic piece is spot on. Now we just need a millennial Gipper to coalesce the factions and sell the movement. And overcome an Orwellian media environment.

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  86. susan said on July 26, 2019 at 9:00 am

    Yes, I’m with AOC, and I sure ain’t a “Millennial,” whatever the hell that is. I want better, thoughtful, inclusive, progressive, functional government that works for all of us not just them.

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  87. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 26, 2019 at 9:42 am

    Born August 1961 and I’m with Sherri — I’ve never felt like “Boomer” fit me, and I’ve spent my whole professional life butting heads with them, in church and the justice system. But I have to admit Gen X probably is a fair fit.


    I have seen some breakdowns of generational cohorts that put Boomers’ terminus at 1960. My dad is so a member of the Silent Generation, the only generation so far in American history to NOT elect one of their own as President, I have read stated by demographic historians, emphatically true for the last hundred years however you break them out. From Reagan to Clinton we jumped, and McCain was the last chance the Silent Generation had to elect a POTUS. They quietly worked in the lengthening shadow of the Greatest/WWII Generation, and I know many Boomers in some institutions (like the organized church) felt they held on until even they tended to get pushed out, so there has been in many areas a disjunction from the end of WWII era thinking in charge to the Gen Xers and Millennials trying to take up leadership.

    And a big part of that is going from an implicitly military shaped table of organization with strong hierarchies to a flatter, more de-centralized model of organization without much of a transitional form. This is why so many traditional churches are flailing right now (can you tell I just got back from a big church event?), because the last of that officers/board/committee leadership cadre is still in charge in their 70s, grudgingly letting the reins slip from their grasp, but fighting a holding action against dissolving the outward forms that they no longer have the horses or energy to keep working. And Millennials do NOT do committees, and God bless them for it.

    Anyhow, I still don’t think I’m a Boomer.

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  88. Linda said on July 26, 2019 at 10:02 am

    No silent gen in the White House? Kennedy and Reagan would both qualify. It occurs to me that Elizabeth Warren could be in the new century what Reagan was to the 80s—an older figure who works for the goals of the younger, and becomes an admired figure.

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  89. Julie Robinson said on July 26, 2019 at 10:31 am

    Linda, make that 58,000.

    I was born in 1956, the peak of boomer years, and I can see both sides, but I disagree with the idea that boomers came to maturity in glory years while Millennials were stuck with failures. The events that shaped me were the assassinations of JFK, Dr. King, and RFK; the Vietnam War and its protests, particularly the massacre at Kent State, the Detroit riots; and most importantly, the Presidency of Nixon and Watergate investigation. These are hardly triumphs.

    My boomer era mates watched their older brothers and sisters go off to war or protest it. The seniors when I was a freshman were the last class to be drafted, and I vividly remember watching the draft lottery on TV. There were no protests going on at IU when I arrived in the fall of 1974. There was still a lot of angst, but most of us were disgusted by the entire political process and vowed to avoid it.

    The boomers a bit older were able to start careers and buy homes in a solid economy with low interest rates. We started out in a period of hyperinflation, the energy crisis, and the first wave of big factory closings. Gone were the 3% mortgages; when we bought our second house in 1984 we were thrilled to get one at 13.5%. For years we barely scraped along and we looked with envy at those just five years older. So, perhaps we can be forgiven for concentrating on family and disconnecting from politics.

    While we weren’t watching, all the bad old ways of doing politics crept back in. Reforms were overturned or simply ignored. I can’t agree more that Dems have tried to hard to play nice in the wake of Republicans’ scorched earth policies. The one criticism I had of Obama from the beginning was his efforts to be conciliatory and bipartisan when Republicans were vowing to block everything he did and make him a one-term President.

    If we don’t embrace the Millennials we will lose them. How do we do that without losing the Biden voters? We need both.

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  90. Sherri said on July 26, 2019 at 11:10 am

    I would say, from the point of view of a Millennial, Boomers had it good, despite the obvious issues people point out here. Yes, mortgage interest rates were high, but you could buy a house, something impossible even for many millennials with good jobs. College was still relatively affordable; I could work in the summers and parttime and with scholarships pay my way through college without debt.

    My entire adult life our society has been steadily reducing taxes and pulling back from a shared burden. We’ve been coasting on the enormous New Deal and post-War public investment made in people and infrastructure, and there’s nothing left to coast on as the Millennials move into their prime.

    I agree, Jeff(tmmo), that we’re not really Boomers. We were too young for any of the shared cultural experiences of the Boomers (Vietnam and the draft were over by the time we were 18), but at the same time, we grew up before the impacts of the cultural displacements of a rising divorce rate really took hold.

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  91. Deborah said on July 26, 2019 at 1:08 pm

    I’ve thought for decades that my generation, boomer, has failed miserably at governing and it’s way past time to let go.

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  92. Jakash said on July 26, 2019 at 1:45 pm

    “Mueller testified that the president is an unprosecuted felon. His testimony however, lacked a compelling musical number.” (4-tweet thread.)


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  93. Dexter Friend said on July 26, 2019 at 4:13 pm

    David Maraniss gave a long sit-down interview on the Ann Arbor PBS yesterday. He has a new book out about Detroit, mostly, and I am going to buy it. His book “They Marched into Sunlight” from 2004 was a great read.
    What makes it special is the comparison of daily life of where Davis was, at UW Madison, to what soldiers were going through simultaneously in the war, which makes for compelling reading. I read it 14 years ago and I still thumb through it from time to time.
    David has thoroughly studied the history of Detroit and I just have to have this new book. “Motor City Burning” is being published this month. His 2015 book “Once a Great City: A Detroit Story” was a success, but I missed that one.
    He told a funny, too. David had become friendly with Bill Clinton and had written praise for Clinton, until Monica and all the details. Then he wrote some negative words. Clinton cut him off, but two years later they both found themselves in a reception line. Bill said “Hello, David, nice tie.” David said hello, and they shook hands. David mouthed the words to his dad that Bill had said “nice tie”. When Dad shook hands with Bill, he too said, “nice tie Mr. President.” Later George Stephanopoulos, who worked with Bill, said to David, “He told you what? Nice tie? Don’t you know that in the Clinton vernacular ‘nice tie’ means ‘fuck you’? Ha! So David got the message and poor old Mr. Maraniss did as well.

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  94. LAMary said on July 26, 2019 at 10:00 pm

    Born in 1953 and my high school classmates were drafted by lottery. The draft was a huge issue for males my age and older. I was almost kept from participating in my high school graduation because I distributed draft counseling pamphlets from the AFSC to classmates. I also remember the riots of the sixties vividly, and the assassinations. We had some pretty crazy things to deal with.

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  95. Dexter Friend said on July 27, 2019 at 2:05 am

    I had a choice. I could go to Vietnam, or be forgotten in a state prison for whatever term the judge would have given me. One guy, Jeff Gibson, refused his draft orders. This was in open court in Fort Wayne. My Vietnam Veterans chapter showed up in the gallery and stood for Jeff and his conviction to not go to war. Jeff’s attorney presented the reasoning and evidence of Jeff’s determination, and the judge sent Mister Gibson down to Pendleton Corrections for 6 months. I lost track of Jeff, but he was one smart cat and I would be shocked if he became anything other than wildly successful. But not everyone had the support and backing that Jeff had. In my family, my community, with my friends…had I refused to go, I would have been the scum of the earth. Nope, draft-dodging, now that was only for the ones who could devise a path to university. Old Uncle Robert McNamara only wanted high school grads, dropouts, mentally challenged, and those facing prison terms to go into the shit. The thought of drafting college men? Ha! But, ya know, some college people did report for duty, Al Gore, John Kerry, Donald J. Trump….did I get your attention there? Trump…paid a quack to say he had bone spurs. 9.8 million served during the war era, with 2.1 million being in-country Vietnam. Not all of us were “McNamara’s Morons”, as the press called the sub-par intelligence quotient draftees…some of us just accepted our fate. Truthfully, I have rationalized the guilt I felt for a long time for participating in such a war , easier for me to do since every dead combatant I saw, I didn’t kill, and if my memories of those years was what I did in an Indiana prison…that would just be sadder, somehow. I would have been a sorry-assed martyr. Nearly 1 in ten males in the USA were in uniform in the war era…now what is it? 1.7% or something like that?

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  96. Bitter Scribe said on July 27, 2019 at 11:42 am

    Like Julie Robinson, I was born in 1956, and I have to say she completely nails it. The economy during my adulthood has been a nearly unbroken string of recessions, retrenchments, inflation, stagflation, high unemployment and generally tough times.

    Politically, I came of age watching America piss away in Vietnam the goodwill it had built up during WWII and the Cold War. I watched Ronald Reagan go from right-wing nutjob to a respected, even beloved, two-term president. I watched politics in general descend into the nihilistic backbiting, the race to the bottom, that culminated in Trump.

    Although we did have certain advantages that kids today don’t. College wasn’t nearly as expensive, and union factory workers, like my father, were paid enough to raise a family on. The gig economy, a product of the internet, hadn’t spread its poisonous tentacles, and a job was still a job, with a steady salary and benefits—if you were lucky enough to get and keep one.

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  97. alex said on July 27, 2019 at 11:52 am

    One of the ideas Pete Buttigieg has been promoting is national service, kind of like the old military draft, only you’d have a choice of how you’d be conscripted. You could do military or you could do Peace Corps or do other types of constructive volunteer work. And it wouldn’t necessarily have to be conscription. You could sign up for service in exchange for the cost of a college education.

    One of the things about military service that I’ve heard praised by the most liberal/progressive of veterans is that it is “the great leveler” and instills in people the values of the social contract. As a veteran, Buttigieg would know.

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  98. LAMary said on July 27, 2019 at 12:07 pm

    I agree on the great leveler idea.
    On another note, there was a story on NPR the other morning about an organization in Arizona called, “Latinos for Trump.” A woman from Colombia who was one of the organizers actually said that Trump shares the values of Latinos, specifically, religion, right to life, family, hard work, and paying taxes. I’m sticking on the number 8 for how many abortions Trump’s paid for. Everything else on that list is just ridiculous.

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  99. Suzanne said on July 27, 2019 at 1:07 pm

    Tail end of the Boomer generation, too, and don’t feel part of it. My older siblings stayed at the same job for 30 years or more. I lost a job at age 50 and they don’t get why I’ve struggled to find sure footing since then.
    Most people my age, at least that I know, are unabashed conservatives. They don’t all love Trump, but they almost all tolerate him and I have no doubt, will vote for him again if they see the Dem candidate as too liberal. Most don’t really pay attention to politics and don’t seem to care what is going on in government; I don’t think they believe it has any impact on their daily lives.
    On the whole, I think Boomers screwed things up and that we are royally screwed going forward.

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  100. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 27, 2019 at 2:22 pm

    The problem with most national service plans: every year, about 2 million youth turn 18. The armed services need about 250,000 of them. For a variety of reasons, from medical disability to severe obesity, at least half of the 2 million don’t qualify for military enlistment, let alone drafting. But of that 1 million, you need to find comparable efforts with compatible supervision for three of four, let alone if you try to include some or most of those disqualified turning-18s. You could double the size of the military, making use of the bases and cadre and such, but do we want a military twice as large? You can put some out on trails in the West to rebuild and condition, but again the supervision question, and housing — the Student Conservation Association apprenticeships with NPS are great, but it’s a small and highly selective group and they’re put out to largely self-supervise.

    In general, I dislike making volunteer community service a grad requirement; we shuffle through a lot of that in this county, because a few school districts (we have ten here, not counting religious schools, another three) have made some form of community service hours part of graduation, but it ends up being a lot of make work and the kids learn as much cynicism as community out of the process. There’s got to be a better way to include and affirm and facilitate it for youth, but I don’t know what it is yet.

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  101. Deborah said on July 27, 2019 at 9:39 pm

    We are back in Abiquiu. My husband returned to NM today after our trip to France and then business in Chicago.

    I’m hearing a lot of thunder but it doesn’t seem like it’s going to rain. It has been raining a bit more so hopefully the monsoon season is upon us, finally.

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  102. Dexter Friend said on July 28, 2019 at 2:42 am

    Great levelling is a concept, as yes, we all had the same haircuts and wore uniforms . Still, smartass suckasses were made armband sergeants (not real ones) and they treated weaker draftees brutally. They never lifted them up, they abused them. Also, as I mentioned, I was in a barracks with a lot of men from Detroit who were forced into the army in lieu of prison, on orders from McNamara. I had played baseball all over the southern USA for two summers and had been around, but the first time I was exposed to clouds of weed smoke and heard “Oh wow, man” was in my army barracks. More levelling there. Of course the brass and NCOs knew half the trainees were blitzed at every turn but knew they couldn’t alter the mindset…they wanted to cycle us overseas quickly, no time for dope lectures. Also, level to what? The smart middle class kids were in colleges and universities…Bowling Green SU had kids sitting in folding chairs in hallways and concourses because so many kids were there avoiding the draft legally, and good for them. But McNamara knew not everyone could afford school no matter how affordable it was, and it really was affordable. Single moms had no way to send kids off to school, and some kids just could not hold a job…plenty of fodder around for army cannon. Here is the endgame: many of my friends who avoided the draft by getting into tech schools and state colleges really hated school and would have rather have been out making big money in places like UAW factories,but had to struggle to pay their own way, and more than a few realized the had missed their own chance to be involved in the cultural adventure of their generation. I know some of you are scoffing, hell, I was surprised to hear them be honest and tell me that. In other words, there were a lot of unhappy and displaced kids in the mid-60s into the 1970s.
    Jumping way ahead, I watched Smithsonian programming a bit. On 9-11-01, G.W. Bush43 actually shot back at Wolfowitz and Rumsfeld when they both screamed at Bush we had to bomb Iraq immediately. Bush scornfully told them no way, we were going to bomb Afghanistan, home of al-Qaeda. Of course Wolfy and Rummy got their way later. And, of course, Saudi Arabia, home of 16 of the 19 hijackers, was offered only constant praise.

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  103. Deborah said on July 28, 2019 at 11:18 am

    Whooo-eeee, David Simon is on a tweet rant after Trump’s twitter insult to Rep Cummings and Baltimore. Simon is a Twitter master.

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  104. Bitter Scribe said on July 28, 2019 at 2:29 pm

    National service, meh. To me it’s a solution in search of a problem.

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  105. Sherri said on July 28, 2019 at 3:18 pm

    I’m with Bitter on national service.

    I think the tide may be turning on impeachment in the House. My Congress member just put out a statement calling for impeachment. (Suzan DelBene, WA-01).

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