Different from you and me.

It’s getting toward the end of the month, so apologies for posting a New York Times story as the center for today’s blog; I know not everyone is a subscriber and has the 10 or so permitted free articles. It’s not that important, anyway, but I’ll try to quote only judiciously from the story, about the strange relationship between Jeffrey Epstein and Leslie Wexner, the founder and CEO of what’s now known as L Brands but everyone who grew up in Columbus called the Limited.

The story draws a lot of lines between the two, but doesn’t connect all the dots, many of which are, as yet, not connectable by primary sources. What’s known is that the two were unusually close, and aren’t anymore. This sorta sums it up:

Within years of meeting Mr. Epstein, Mr. Wexner handed him sweeping powers over his finances, philanthropy and private life, according to interviews with people who knew the men as well as court documents and financial records.

Mr. Wexner authorized him to borrow money on his behalf, to sign his tax returns, to hire people and to make acquisitions. Over the years, Mr. Epstein obtained a New York mansion, a private plane and a luxury estate in Ohio — today valued at roughly $100 million all together — previously owned by Mr. Wexner or his companies. At the same time, he drove a wedge between Mr. Wexner and longtime associates and friends.

Virtually from the moment in the 1980s that Mr. Epstein arrived on the scene in Columbus, Ohio, where L Brands was based, Mr. Wexner’s friends and colleagues were mystified as to why a renowned businessman in the prime of his career would place such trust in an outsider with a thin résumé and scant financial experience.

Wexner, for his part, claims he severed their relationship at some point, around the time of the now-infamous plea deal in Florida:

“While Mr. Epstein served as Mr. Wexner’s personal money manager for a period that ended nearly 12 years ago, we do not believe he was ever employed by nor served as an authorized representative of the company,” said Tammy Roberts Myers, a company spokeswoman.

Ms. Myers said that, at the direction of the company’s board, L Brands recently hired lawyers “to conduct a thorough review” into the relationship. She declined to say what the investigation would entail.

Wexner has reason to put as much distance as possible between himself and a sex criminal now; as many have pointed out, all is not what it used to be at L Brands, which swaggered through the Malling of America like conquering heroes. L Brands, at one time, encompassed the Limited, Limited Too, Limited Express, Lane Bryant, Abercrombie & Fitch, Bath & Body Works and Victoria’s Secret. Probably a few I’m forgetting in there, too. It would be hard to pass through a shopping center without feeling their fingers in your wallet; long after I outgrew the cheap clothes on offer, toddler Kate would drag me into Bath & Body Works. (They sold cheap glycerin soaps for a buck a bar, and she loved to pick out the colors she liked and just play with them in their wrappers. Kept her amused on many trips to Columbus. My sister pointed out that most malls had multiple locations of B&BW, knowing it was an impulse buy — they wanted to be in as many places as possible, to catch you when you were feeling impulsive.)

Now, of course, the plight of the American shopping mall is well-known, and Victoria’s Secret in particular is in trouble. They failed to see the body-positivity trend coming, preferring to stick to the otherworldly, fake-boobed TrumpFembot(tm) model for their brand image. This may be explained by the fact that until recently, they had a board with only one woman on it — Abigail Wexner, the CEO’s wife. She is undeniably a brainy woman, but I doubt she’s noticing lingerie trends at the middle-class retail level, living in the Himalayan altitude of wealth as she does.

Anyway, this is a bad time for Wexner to be seen as a confederate of someone like Epstein, even in the past, as it’s becoming increasingly evident Epstein’s proclivities and activities were carried out more or less in plain sight, and Wexner is the father of two daughters himself. A consumer boycott is the last thing the company needs.

When I wrote about him about 100 years ago, the angle was this: For years, this fortysomething Jewish bachelor accumulated wealth and built his company and kept a pretty low profile, and then suddenly one day he woke up and decided to be a Player. Columbus is like most Midwestern cities and prizes dues-paying over just flinging money around, and Wexner made a big misstep early when he suggested the symphony orchestra give up its Ohio Theatre base for a “real” music hall. The Ohio Theatre was one of those glorious old movie theaters from the ’20s that fell into disrepair; a volunteer-funded restoration effort saved it and people were very proud and nostalgic about it, so that didn’t go over well at all. He lost that one, but anyone with millions of dollars isn’t ignored for long, and I think building the Wexner Center, an avant-garde art space on the Ohio State campus, satisfied his urge to make a mark in the arts, and plastering his name on a few hospital buildings did the same.

But I recall seeing Epstein’s name associated with him for a while now, with the theme that somehow Epstein offered the billionaire some essential schooling in “how to be rich.” Wexner didn’t start really spending in a showy way until his marriage to a New York City M&A lawyer in 1993. First there was the gigantic house in the Columbus suburbs to welcome her to town, then, because his bride liked outdoorsy pursuits like riding and shooting, he outfitted the house with barns and stables and bought her country homes in London and …Georgia, I think. There was a yacht, Limitless, with the yachtiest yacht details available; I think I remember some puff piece talking about the “dolphin cam” belowdecks, so his children could watch the fishies swim by. Epstein was apparently part of all these projects, even down to overseeing the design and building of the yacht, a pretty amazing thing for a college dropout with no mariner experience to do.

So I guess the question that hangs over all of this is: Is it possible for a man capable of building a billionaire’s fortune over the course of one lifetime — he famously launched his first store with a $10,000 loan from various relatives — be so naive that he didn’t know what Epstein was, fairly early in their relationship? He trusted him to sign his tax returns? Build him a $100 million yacht? So did he know and not care or — and I think this is far more likely — this sort of behavior is simply accepted, along with everything else, if you’re rich enough and have the right friends?

OK, so. Sunday afternoon and I’ve been away from here for…a week. Apologies. I have no excuse other than: I’ve been busy, with a few weeknight engagements. Missed a couple of swim workouts, which I expect I’ll pay for during my open-water test in three weeks. If I drown, I’ll tell St. Peter, “It was summer, and I was busy.” Whatever.

I’m also done keeping up with various presidential outrages in this space. They’re happening too fast, and you guys all get to them first. Now it’s Baltimore, last weekend it was the “go back” stuff; current events these days are like being dive-bombed by zombie wasps or something. It’s so enervating, and it’s hot outside.

Thanks for hanging around, anyway. Next week are the Dem debates here in Detroit. I’m credentialed for the first night, and hope to share something with you after. Stay tuned.

Posted at 3:28 pm in Current events |
 

49 responses to “Different from you and me.”

  1. Suzanne said on July 28, 2019 at 3:45 pm

    So, it seems to me that Epstein has his fingers in everybody’s pot; well, everybody with money. Something stinks big time with him. I was out of town for most of last week, so not watching news much, or online much, but still, I am seeing so very little about Epstein’s suicide/attack in jail (https://www.cnbc.com/2019/07/24/jeffrey-epstein-injured-in-federal-jail-in-manhattan.html). I find this odd. Very odd.

    And then there is Putin’s political foe having an odd “allergic reation”
    https://www.npr.org/2019/07/28/746031480/russian-opposition-leader-alexei-navalny-hospitalized-with-severe-allergic-react
    Sure, yeah. Allergies.

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  2. Mark P. said on July 28, 2019 at 3:45 pm

    Sheesh. How many times do we need to see proof that rich does not equal smart? And, most especially, rich does not equal good.

    The revolution can’t come quick enough for me.

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  3. beb said on July 28, 2019 at 4:39 pm

    I doubt that we will ever see Epstein go on trial. Either he will conveniently die before hand, or lawyers from every friend, client ot distant associate will sue to limit discovery. But it does sound like this is the biggest scandal on America in a hundred years. It’s hard not to suspect everyone who ever socialized with Epstein was involved with sex with a minor.

    Trump should be aware of what rat infested hellholes look like since he owns so many of them.

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  4. Suzanne said on July 28, 2019 at 5:05 pm

    Aaaand now Dan Coats is out
    https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/28/politics/dan-coats-national-intelligence-director/index.html

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  5. Bitter Scribe said on July 28, 2019 at 8:12 pm

    I always had the sense that Victoria’s Secret was all about male fantasy, and that the women who were involved, whether as models or customers, were just going along with it. It was basically a slightly classier (and probably much more expensive) version of Frederick’s of Hollywood.

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  6. David C. said on July 28, 2019 at 8:15 pm

    So will Coats be a good solder and slink away saying nothing or does he say what crazy mofo shit the boss is up to?

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  7. Deborah said on July 28, 2019 at 8:37 pm

    The architect for the Wexner Center at Ohio State was Peter Eisenmann. The building was in all the architectural magazines when it was finished as the greatest thing since sliced bread. Of course it wasn’t and Eisenmann no longer has the cachet he once had. I toured the building in the early 2000s and was not impressed. I had been to another Eisenmann building at the University of Cincinnati and was equally not impressed. He had some obscure ideas about space that are pretty passé these days, it was all very conceptual and theoretical which has not much to do with people experiencing and living in buildings.

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  8. Linda said on July 28, 2019 at 8:44 pm

    Bitter Scribe: the ironic thing is that VS was the once a comfier, more fun alternative to Frederick’s, with its uncomfortable clothing you could only wear if you were a size 2. They ate Frederick’s lunch. Then VS forgot what brung ‘em to the dance, and started being about runway shows for men. Then a lot of competitors ate VS’s lunch. VS forgot that women want more than to give guys a chubby.

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  9. LAMary said on July 28, 2019 at 9:06 pm

    It’s too bad Trump doesn’t have a Secretary of HUD who could put some effort into fixing Baltimore. Someone who is African American and familiar with Baltimore would be good.

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  10. alex said on July 28, 2019 at 9:16 pm

    Trump has been making noises about getting rid of Coats since the beginning of his administration, so I’m surprised he lasted this long. I thought Coats might have been the author who penned the subversive WaPo piece about being one of the adults in the room protecting democracy from Lord Fauntleroy.

    I don’t watch the pundits but my mom does and she says they’re insinuating strongly that Epstein got rich by being a pimp for the kinky rich and gaining kompromat on his clients. As good a theory as any I suppose.

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  11. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 28, 2019 at 10:23 pm

    Eisenman has the most hostile Wikipedia entry I think I’ve ever read:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_Eisenman

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  12. Deborah said on July 28, 2019 at 11:18 pm

    Jeff tmmo, you might be familiar with Eisenman’s Convention Center design in Columbus. I haven’t heard as much criticism of that building of his, as some of the others. I’ve only seen that building from the outside, so I can’t really have an opinion.

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  13. Sherri said on July 28, 2019 at 11:46 pm

    I actually wear VS sports bras. They make a front zip sport bra that is supportive, doesn’t create uniboob, and is possible to take off after my workout when I’m sweaty without dislocating my shoulders. They also come in fun colors. VS also make leggings with side pockets that hold a phone.

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  14. Jeff (the mild-mannered one) said on July 29, 2019 at 6:50 am

    Helped to put on our denominational gathering in it, Deborah, four years ago; the story in Columbus is that Eisenman got his way on the exterior, but the demands of the convention bureau ended up meaning much of the actual implementation of his structure was handed over to architects who were versed in things like restrooms and lighting and maintainable structures.

    I attended a seminary designed by Edward Larabee Barnes who was grudgingly to put one pair of small restrooms in a facility intended to house 400 students; they retrofitted two more sets of them into the building much to his fury. The donor, Clementine Tangeman, gave him another commission which mollified him; she and her brother J. Irwin Miller were behind the whole Columbus, Indiana architectural experiment. Lots of mid-century modern and other expressions of High Modernism on display there, and plenty of advanced architects who to be fair were not opposed to buildings human beings could actually get work done in.

    I do apologize for never making it to the World Food Award building; it was only open on Tuesday while I was in Des Moines, and I had obligations from 7 am through the evening, plus my 85 year old father to help shepherd through the convention center there, which is jam packed full of stairs and ramps and not enough elevators. Pretty, though.

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  15. Heather said on July 29, 2019 at 9:14 am

    Then there’s this New Yorker piece on Alan Dershowitz that just went online: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/08/05/alan-dershowitz-devils-advocate

    I don’t know if Dershowitz availed himself of the girls at Epstein’s or not, but I highly doubt there was a 50-year-old woman named Olga in his house.

    I’m back from a five-day, 36-person extended family reunion on Tybee Island in Georgia. It was great fun for the most part, marred only by my sister, who basically repeated her behavior from the last reunion: have a temper tantrum on the second or third day, pretend nothing is wrong, be a sourpuss the rest of the trip, and then post on social media about how awesome it was.

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  16. Peter said on July 29, 2019 at 9:33 am

    I have to give Peter Eisenman a pass for purely personal reasons – when I was a student he gave a lecture on Giuseppe Terragni’s Casa del Fascia (now Casa del Popolo) in Como Italy, and I was just blown away by the building’s design and Eisenman’s analysis. He said that his designs came from his understanding of the building, which I must admit, if you look at them both, is a little strained.

    I said it before and I’ll say it again – in a previous job my brother-in-law worked at a bank, and the tellers used to send people who were withdrawing suspicious amounts of money to him for a little chat. Almost all of them were taking out money to send to Nigeria so they can get a large inheritance. Almost all of them were professionals and small business owners who should have known better. He said that the ones that really got to him were those that ran a restaurant and a clothing store – people who had to have their BS detectors on high alert at all times or they’d be out of business – and THIS is what they fell for.

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  17. Sherri said on July 29, 2019 at 10:02 am

    I read something recently about the best mark for a con being a man who is successful in one area, because he then thinks he knows about succeeding in all areas.

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    • nancy said on July 29, 2019 at 11:34 am

      Or an engineer. They think they know everything about everything.

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  18. Julie Robinson said on July 29, 2019 at 10:19 am

    This is all straight out of the revival we saw in NYC, Promenade, written in the late 60’s as a response to the Vietnam War.

    There is a clownish ruler/rich man who invites people to a party, commands them to entertain him, then gets bored and throws them all in jail. There is a policeman/head of justice, who is more corrupt than the ruler and uses his post to engage in sins of all kinds.

    At the end the wealthy white people simply decide to walk out of jail, and the poor people with brown skins are left there with no other options.

    An opt-repeated phrase is: money makes you stupid. Any wonder they thought it was relevant to today?

    It wasn’t a fun show to watch and lacked catchy music, but I’m so glad we went.

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  19. Jakash said on July 29, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    As for the New York Times and the 10 or so permitted free articles, they’ve finally cracked down on that. For years, we’ve been able to read as many articles as we want by just clearing the browser when we hit the limit. As of about a month or so ago, that strategy no longer works. Though they still let me read one article per day from the email of headlines they send, for some reason. So, I’ve got to choose a lot more carefully!

    I surely don’t begrudge any newspaper charging for their work, and using whatever calculations they think are best for trying to maximize their income as well as their impact. My personal calculation is that getting to read the NYT at all is a nice treat, to whatever extent they allow it. But, just as I didn’t subscribe and seldom bought one in pre-internet days, I’m still not interested in getting an online subscription now. If they had a hard paywall like the Wall Street Journal, I’d just go back to seldom reading it at all, as was the case years ago, and is the case with the WSJ.

    Meanwhile, that’s quite a yacht. If I ran a political party, I think I’d make it our #1 priority to make sure that guys who own yachts like that pay as little in taxes as possible. Holy moly!

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  20. beb said on July 29, 2019 at 12:46 pm

    I wonder if Victoria Secret’s started going downhill about the time Wexler came under the influence of Epstein?

    I don’t know about architecture but I think the guy who designed Detroit’s RenCen ought to have been banned for life.

    Isn’t about time that Twitter suspend Trump’s account for hate speech and racism?

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  21. basset said on July 29, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    Spent most of the weekend outside Kalamazoo taking Mrs. B to her 45th high school reunion; she had a great time, I didn’t but I think I hid it pretty well. Sat outside till the mosquitoes got too bad, then came in and tried to stay out of the way. We did work in a trip to the Gilmore museum, they had a big display of Duesenbergs but only one Checker showing.

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  22. Bitter Scribe said on July 29, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    There do seem to be a lot of architects who never bother their pretty heads with thoughts of how people are supposed to actually live and work in their creations.

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  23. Connie said on July 29, 2019 at 2:26 pm

    I have been involved in architect interviews and selection several times. We interviewed a team that included famous architect Michael Graves. The number one reason we should hire them is our building would be famous.

    I lived near Columbus IN for several years and the IM Pei Library, well it flooded for years, so the built a Pei designed addition to stop the flooding. And the lighting is not exactly library reading lighting. But oh well, IM Pei. I much prefer the Henry Moore sculpture out front.

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  24. diane said on July 29, 2019 at 2:56 pm

    Our library is in the mist of a small building project (renovation of much of the existing building and a small addition) and I find myself amazed at several things: A small project still means a ton of time and ongoing decision making; how the contractor and even our owner’s rep have a “don’t worry about that, little lady” attitude to my Director and the rest of the library staff (we happen to be female) on the Owner/Architect/Contractor group; and how they really want to tell us what we don’t need in a library space (yes we do need noise mitigation, it really is more important than fancy “impact statement” design elements, because, yes, people can talk in today’s libraries!) etc.!

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  25. Charlotte said on July 29, 2019 at 4:23 pm

    My brother did the tents for the Wexner wedding in 93 — spent something like six WEEKS in Columbus setting it up. The only thing I remember about it was that he had fake snow in a non-snow time of year, and that Patrick met a nice girl and seriously considered Columbus as a place to live ….

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  26. Dexter Friend said on July 29, 2019 at 4:54 pm

    In my days of buying and driving oddball vehicles , I always wanted a Checker Marathon to bug around in for fun…never saw one for sale. The only two people I have been made aware of that still drive them is one old man in Manhattan who gives rides for free (but he may have passed on to the the garage in the sky), and Fran Lebowitz.

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  27. basset said on July 29, 2019 at 6:09 pm

    There are still some Checkers on the road:
    http://www.checkerworld.com

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  28. basset said on July 29, 2019 at 6:10 pm

    Checker quit making cars in 82. Outdated products, worn-out factory equipment and lack of money to design anything new had a lot to do with it… but the company lived on for a few more years doing metal stamping, mostly for GM: https://www.hemmings.com/blog/2017/01/15/how-checker-remained-in-business-after-the-end-of-taxi-production-building-everything-including-the-kitchen-sink/

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  29. alex said on July 29, 2019 at 8:59 pm

    When I moved to Chicago in the mid-’80s, Checkers were still a big part of the taxi fleet but they soon gave way to Caprices and Crown Victorias and the fleet cars of the times. They had superb interior space and leg room even though they were technologically about three decades behind everything else. Even so, the newer cabs showed wear and tear much quicker and felt like death traps and they were suffocating gas chambers of curried pore sweat, farts and sharts.

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  30. Brian stouder said on July 29, 2019 at 10:19 pm

    The young folks and I are on the gulf coast of Alabama (in an ‘air bnb’) enjoying our vacation; and therefore ‘out of the loop’ whereabouts. (I was braced for a different ambiance down here, and have been pleasantly surprised by its absence. ‘Course, we’re surrounded by other vacationers, so there’s that…

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  31. Joe Kobiela said on July 29, 2019 at 11:14 pm

    Brian,
    Try Desotos in gulf shores it’s right by the original souvenir city. Swing over to Pensacola and hit the Navel aviation museum,or go out to fort gains and take the ferry across the bay to Dauphin Island and yell out damn the torpedoes full speed ahead.Thats where it was said
    Love the redneck Rivera
    Pilot Joe

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  32. Sherri said on July 29, 2019 at 11:21 pm

    I was privileged to know her and learn from her. Rest In Peace, Doreen Marchione.

    https://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/obituaries/doreen-marchione-former-redmond-mayor-social-services-advocate-and-champion-for-women-in-politics-dies-at-80/

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  33. Sherri said on July 30, 2019 at 11:55 am

    If you haven’t yet experienced the force of nature that is Lizzo, this Tiny Desk concert is a good intro (warning: lots of profanity).

    https://www.npr.org/2019/07/29/732097345/lizzo-tiny-desk-concert

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  34. Sherri said on July 30, 2019 at 12:22 pm

    If this person shows up in your state, start protests in the streets immediately.

    https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/meet-the-right-wing-consultant-who-goes-from-state-to-state-slashing-budgets

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  35. Sherri said on July 30, 2019 at 12:43 pm

    How is Warren doing this? She has both a message and a rationale for running. They are not the same thing, but they are entwined. A select few candidates have a Big Idea: Biden is running on restoring American values, Sanders on radical change, Pete Buttigieg on generational justice. But they have not quite explained, as well as Warren has, why they are the best person to step into the White House right now. “In a crowded field, having a strong message is important, but so is a rationale for running—and Senator Warren has both,” said Eric Koch, a New York-based Democratic strategist. “In 30 seconds, she can tell you not only why she’s in the race but what she’s going to do once she wins. She’s done a great job running a focused campaign that keeps an emphasis on her message, experience, and vision—while avoiding the kind of pointless Twitter drama that doesn’t actually win you votes.” Warren’s themes of economic justice and informed experience—“Warren Has a Plan for That!”—make sense to a cross-section of Democrats frustrated by inequality and the slapdash incompetence of the Trump administration. Unlike Biden and Sanders, she is a new face on the presidential campaign stage. She calls herself a fighter, and has backed up that pledge with policy agenda so liberal and far-reaching that it would have made Rahm Emanuel throw up in his mouth not five years ago.

    I’m always surprised at how often candidates are unable to articulate why they are running for an office. A local candidate here for school board, when asked that question, said because people told him he should run for something and because he liked boards because boards made decisions.

    https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2019/07/is-elizabeth-warren-the-one

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  36. Scout said on July 30, 2019 at 1:09 pm

    Elizabeth Warren is campaigning here in Phoenix on Thursday. We have tickets and I’m really looking forward to it. She is one of my top two; the other is Kamala. I hope her campaign makes a stop here too.

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  37. Sherri said on July 30, 2019 at 3:19 pm

    It feels like to me this news story focuses on the wrong things. Yes, there was a data breach of Capital One data. Our data has been stolen so many times that’s becoming dog bites man territory. Okay, it was done by a woman. A little more unusual. What’s this?

    According to the complaint against Thompson, she worked as a systems engineer at a cloud-computing company in 2015 and 2016 that rented space on its servers to Capital One. She is accused of exploiting a faulty configuration in Capital One’s firewall to access the company’s secure data.

    Hmm, what’s a cloud-computing company in Seattle…yes, there’s more than one, but it doesn’t require much research to find out she worked at Amazon during that timeframe.

    And wait, there’s more! Now things get really wild!

    While federal agents were sweeping the three-bedroom house where Thompson lives they discovered 20 firearms — both assault-style rifles and handguns — as well as firearm accessories, including bumpstocks, scopes, grips and ammunition, in another bedroom, according to a separate complaint filed against the homeowner, 66-year-old Park Quan.

    !!!

    https://www.seattletimes.com/business/seattle-woman-arrested-in-breach-of-capital-one-systems-millions-of-credit-applications/

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  38. Dorothy said on July 30, 2019 at 4:13 pm

    Sherri Lizzo is great but I’m partial to Brittany Howard. I think she’s gone solo now but this is from when she was with Alabama Shakes:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Le-3MIBxQTw

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  39. Jakash said on July 30, 2019 at 5:23 pm

    “Biden is running on restoring American values”

    Oh, good to know. I thought he was running on “I’ve wanted to be president since at least 1988 and, while it’s debatable if I’ve ever *had* one, this is definitely my last chance.”

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  40. Indiana Jack said on July 30, 2019 at 7:48 pm

    My apologies if I am off topic, but I’ve been stewing for a bit about some of generalities tossed around the other day about the Baby Boomer generation.
    Like all generalities, they fall short.
    The “Greatest Generation” had its share of assholes, along with a rich history of Jim Crow, gender bias, misogyny, and self-defeating U.S. foreign policy. Tom Brokaw might want to airbrush those out, but the record’s difficult to deny.
    Boomers, of course, had their own set of follies and shortcomings and embarrassments.
    I should know. I was in the thick of it.
    I am 70 now and will be 71 in November. Born in 1948, just at the cusp of the boom.
    In other words, I’ve lived through it.
    That means I’ve lived through nightmares of nuclear destruction in the Cold War, the Cuban missile crisis where we wondered at the lunch counter if we would see one another next week, the assassination of President Kennedy, an escalation of the Vietnam war that saw classmates turned into cannon fodder, students marching in the streets chanting, “The whole world’s watching,” when — in fact — it wasn’t, a civil rights movement that pushed boundaries that now seem ridiculous but which at the time cost lives, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr., the assassination of Bobby Kennedy, Kent State, recessions, hyper-inflation, interest rates on home loans that would boggle your mind, factory closings and local unemployment as high as 20 percent, and now — like a turd on the top of your serving of ice cream — Trump.
    In other words, it hasn’t been a cakewalk.
    It never is. It won’t be for you, and it won’t be for your grandchildren.
    But I got through it.
    Graduated the spring of Kent State, did two years alternative service as a CO, built a career in community journalism, married the love of my life and raised three amazing daughters, went on to spend nearly 20 years trying to build independent journalism in the Back of Beyond.
    It’s never a cakewalk, but if we are lucky we get through it.
    That’s true for Boomers and all the generations that follow.
    The important thing is to keep growing. Just finished “The Nickel Boys.” If you haven’t read it, you need to.

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  41. LAMary said on July 30, 2019 at 10:17 pm

    Too many of the architects I know wear eyeglasses that are too clever. You know what I mean.

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  42. Mark P said on July 30, 2019 at 10:33 pm

    Indiana Jack, in these days when people actually have discussions about whether American troops will fire on American civilians, I remind them of Kent State.

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  43. Deborah said on July 30, 2019 at 11:06 pm

    I remember Kent State like it happened yesterday, had never heard of the school before, it was beyond shocking. But so is putting children in cages. When will we learn.

    LA Mary, so true, I don’t get those glasses. I don’t know who started it, Corbisier? Gropius? Then so many followed like IM Pei and Philip Johnson, and so many more. It’s odd, even still today a good architect friend of ours wears them. On the other hand my architect husband wears glasses just like FBI Director Andrew McCabe, I wonder what that says.

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  44. Sherri said on July 30, 2019 at 11:33 pm

    Boomer fragility, it is a thing, evidently.

    Everybody has it hard. My point is, and was, that we have spent the last 40 years or so failing to invest, in our infrastructure, our universities, our institutions, and as the Millennials come into their prime, the bill is coming due. Yes, things are better in some ways, but structurally, I find it hard to make that case. Complaining that the interest rate on your first mortgage was 14% is unlikely to elicit much sympathy from the Millennial who doesn’t see any path to homeownership.

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  45. Dexter Friend said on July 31, 2019 at 1:06 am

    Smartass governor Steve Bullock of Montana had Elizabeth Warren so incredulously pissed off I was surprised she could respond for her next turn. I watch Warren, Bernie, and Mayor Pete and think the others should quit pretending. I like Beto but he is not resonating at all.
    That author, Williamson, who lived or maybe still lives in Grosse Pointe got the way-LOUDest cheers, and by gawd, she was very good up there onstage…I was surprised, as I thought in the first debate she was weak. One big issue in my family is my cousin’s daughter’s job was lost in Lordstown. She refused a job at Fort Wayne Truck, why I do not know, and now has to move to some far-away state and take her 19 years seniority with her, for whatever that’s worth today. She is bitter, but not quitting on life. Ya gotta keep pluggin’ away. Ain’t that right, Indiana Jack? Yep, we saw a lot, even had to hold our hands over our hearts and say “…under God” during the pledge every day before Madalyn Murray O’Hair had her way. Joy at JFK’s inaugural, shocked in September , 1963, when 4 girls about my age were killed in Birmingham by racist bastards, then a few weeks later, the events in Dallas. Then in a few years, off to see beautiful Vietnam . And none of any of all that bullshit was anything I approved of. Pluggin’ away…30 years in a factory and now a disabled veteran. It’s a wonderful life.

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  46. Suzanne said on July 31, 2019 at 6:44 am

    I will point out that, while a home loan may have had an interest rate of 14% back in the day, I can also remember taking out a 5 year cd at a bank would get you something like 15% interest, so there is that.I currently get such low interest at the bank that I make maybe $1.50 during the year on my checking account. And a year at a state school, living on campus, back in the day would cost you around $5,000. It’s now around $20,000.

    I watched part of the debate and while I would cringe at Williamson being president, she did say some things that needed to be said. Hickenlooper impressed me as did Klobuchar, Buttegieg, and that guy from Montana. Bernie seemed like and angry old man and Warren, who I generally like, didn’t excite me for some reason last night.

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  47. alex said on July 31, 2019 at 7:16 am

    Don’t have cable, didn’t watch.

    From my morning reading, it sounds as if Warren has a gift for riposte.

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  48. LAMary said on July 31, 2019 at 9:42 am

    Architect eyeglasses were brought to my attention by my friend Bill whose judgement I completely trust. A lot of architects live in my neighborhood, six of them are from Poland which is interesting. Anyway, they all have odd glasses.

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