Yesterday’s papers.

An old colleague had a story about a topic we’ve discussed here a time or two, i.e., the decline of local journalism:

CHEBOYGAN — They painted over the Cheboygan Daily Tribune sign last week, the letters loaded into the back of a pickup truck and the dark blue bricks disappearing under a coat of fuchsia. Inside the old Main Street building, where once reporters pecked away on stories about the city council, there’s now a shop selling medieval goods and swords.

…The local newspaper still exists online and residents can grab a thin printed copy at Family Fare Supermarket, but the stories within it often aren’t focused on Cheboygan.

The Daily Tribune employs one sports reporter, but no local news reporters to report on happenings in this Lake Huron community, 15 miles southeast of Mackinaw City, leaving residents to scour Facebook and a weekly shopper publication for information on elections and tax increases.

This is happening…everywhere, but especially in smaller cities and towns. Last week we talked about a would-be mass shooter in Fort Wayne, stopped only by his own incompetence, covered as little more than a routine police story. The great piece about the con artist from a local high school? Nothing. The mayor died a few weeks ago (covered), but the caucus to replace him? Not well covered. And so on, and not to single out Fort Wayne media. This is happening everywhere.

The result? Well, get this, a poll published in The Detroit News on the eve of the Mackinac Policy Conference, where Detroit’s big shots get together, drink and claim to be thisclose to reaching consensus on how the drive the state forward:

A new survey of Michigan voters suggests their trust is declining in the institution of democracy, the value of a college education and the stability of the economy, even among those who say they’re personally doing better than before the COVID pandemic.

The poll also asked about whether the use of force, threats or violence is justified under any circumstances in a democracy, and 35% of poll respondents said they believe it is.

Separately, 5% of Michigan voters said that violence is justified if their preferred candidate for president loses the 2024 election after all votes are counted “fairly.” Ninety percent said there would be no justification for violence in that case.

…”One thing we’re seeing not just in this survey, but in a multitude of surveys, is voters no longer can agree on some basic facts. We are in this era of misinformation,” said pollster Richard Czuba, founder of the Glengariff Group who conducted the survey. “And because we can’t agree on facts, they can’t analyze the basic fundamentals of what they’re seeing in front of them.”

This, more than anything else, is contributing to my Last Good Year mood. Because this, more than anything, shows the end result of not only the hollowing out of local news sources, but the rise of partisan sources as well.

Ignore the democracy questions; just take the college-education piece. There are a lot of things wrong with higher ed, starting with its cost but also including an explosion of what you might call “college,” i.e. for-profit outfits that charge like Harvard for worthless “degrees” that could be gained for a fraction of the cost at a local community college. But for students who attend a four-year school and graduate, the future is brighter than it would be for those with less education; even with all its problems, college grads out-earn those with no degree by hundreds of thousands of dollars over the course of a lifetime.

But college is another thing the right-wing media will tell you is wrong, because Woke, because a conservative speaker was booed offstage somewhere. (I always want to ask these people: How about your kids? Are you sending them to an HVAC certification program or, say, Dartmouth, just like mom and dad?)

I bring all this up because the Luckiest Man in Journalism, i.e. James Lileks, who’s been hanging on to a humor / local-whimsy / architecture column in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, has been informed he’ll no longer be a columnist come August, when the paper is relaunching, or something. (This according to his blog, where he tries and fails to not seem self-pitying.) I’m sure some people will miss him, and I’m equally sure a few of his right-wing friends will try a shame-the-Strib campaign, the way they did the last time he was threatened with having to cover an actual meeting or fatal accident or whatever. I can’t get too happy about this; I lost a column once upon a time, too, and it’s a blow to be sure. But we are now in battle-stations mode, and everybody drawing a paycheck needs to be covering news. It’s too important, even though I fear the battle is already mostly lost.

From Ron’s story about Cheboygan:

In those communities, residents sometimes struggle to keep up with local news that impacts their lives far more profoundly than news that’s easy to find on Fox or social media.

“The chronicling of a small town, that historic record-keeping, has faded,” said Jill Josef Greenberg, a former employee at the Cheboygan paper.

“I wonder who will tell the story of these resilient people?”

I don’t know, but we’re about to find out.

Posted at 11:53 am in Media |

90 responses to “Yesterday’s papers.”

  1. Jeff Borden said on May 28, 2024 at 1:22 pm

    It’s taken more than 40 years, but the disastrous policies of St. Ronald of Reagan are blossoming with poison fruit. Fairness Doctrine? Kaboom. No need to cover both sides. Entire networks now spew unadulterated lies with no penalties. Limits on media ownership? Kaboom. A small handful of companies dominate “journalism,” many of them marrow-sucking venture capital firms. I despised this grinning moron when he was in office and my hate for him only grows. I had no idea –at the time– how completely he fucked this country. His legacy festers like gangrene.

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  2. Dexter Friend said on May 28, 2024 at 2:59 pm

    Jeff: (:). This is my ‘like’ button.

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  3. Julie Robinson said on May 28, 2024 at 3:52 pm

    The Orlando Sentinel is still printing seven days a week and we are still subscribers. They do some excellent investigations and have a crackerjack political columnist. That’s the good.

    The bad: smaller page count than the Journal Gazette had when we left Fort Wayne, 1/3 of the content is from the Tampa or Miami papers, too many righty cartoons and guest editorials. Gray pages with slightly darker gray print, and it rubs off on your hands.

    Even worse: our most recent renewal, for 11 weeks, was in the vicinity of $340. Or maybe $360; I’d have to look it up. They don’t cut any deals when you threaten to cancel, either.

    Neither of our kids read a paper, nor does anyone I know in a younger generation. We’re in our late 60’s. It’s unsustainable.

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  4. Jeff Borden said on May 28, 2024 at 5:23 pm

    Democracy dies in darkness. . .and the lights are getting dimmer.

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  5. Jeff Gill said on May 28, 2024 at 5:53 pm

    How we’re working to reclaim a voice in the public square, here in Licking County, Ohio:

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  6. Sherri said on May 28, 2024 at 6:06 pm

    We still get the Seattle Times delivered seven days a week, and while I have my issues with it, at least it’s not a private equity owned piece of crap. It’s still a family owned paper, and it’s better than what’s happened to all the Gannett and Alden Capital papers.

    My daughter doesn’t read the newspaper, and gets all her news from a variety of sources online.

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  7. FDChief said on May 28, 2024 at 6:34 pm

    It’s nice to blame the decline of news for the increase in unhinged nutjobs. But my suspicion is that the nutjobs would be unhinged if we still had Chet Huntley and David Brinkley bringing news from on high. A huge percentage of these whackaloons seem to be determined to be insane, regardless of how plainly presented with reality.

    If we want a better country, we need to both be better citizens ourselves AND find a nice high cliff to drive these idiots over. Left unchecked they’ll screw things up for all of us…

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  8. Bitter Scribe said on May 28, 2024 at 7:06 pm

    Pity about Lileks. He was one of the few right-wingers who was genuinely funny (although his humor had nothing to do with politics).

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  9. alex said on May 29, 2024 at 12:32 am

    I think the “whackaloons” were always potentially nuts; it’s Fox and the like that activated them, got them all wound up like robotic toy soldiers marching around and spewing outrage about things they never would have given two shits about.

    When Norman Lear gave us Archie Bunker in the ’70s, there was no Fox News feeding him his conspiracy theories and pearls of racist wisdom. He was repeating things passed around on the factory floor, and that’s mostly where that kind of talk stayed.

    The decline of news is part of that cycle. The “normies” who read newspapers are finding themselves outnumbered by the whackaloons who don’t because they are being flattered by media that cater to their ignorance and hostility.

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  10. Jim said on May 29, 2024 at 5:33 am

    I do all my news reading online through news and blogs . ALL the news items are the same .

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  11. Deborah said on May 29, 2024 at 5:36 am

    We all innocently laughed at whackaloon Archie Bunker, little did we know what was coming. I didn’t have a clue how many there were and how dangerous they are. The looney Christian Broadcasters should have been a warning, but I had blinders on. I laughed about Reagan too.

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  12. Dexter Friend said on May 29, 2024 at 7:51 am

    I remember “Green Streak” late afternoon papers in Chicago . I would go to a Cubs game, and by the time I exited the el in The Loop, hawkers were selling the printed editions about the game. I was in New York during the the infamous Nixon-ordered Christmas Bombings which targeted a children’s hospital in Hanoi in 1972, and updated Times editions appeared every few hours at newsstands with newsboys yelling out the headlines. In Monterey, 1970, my army bunkie Bill and I bought the San Jose Mercury, San Francisco Chronicle, and the LA Times every morning before our hospital work shifts and shared them in the post coffee shoppe. I have always bought local rags while on vacation, and always bought The News and the Freep (Detroit) and the Trib and read selected articles on breaks at the factory.
    Now: nothing. Bryan, like almost everywhere, has no newspaper boxes; the newsstand closed 30 years ago. I can get a thin Bryan Times for $2.50 per day, but I just read it online. But by gawd, The New York Post is free online, while we all know the Times costs ya. SF dot com provides me with free California news, the LA Times long ago jumped on the paywall bandwagon.
    As an addictive compulsive person, I cannot subscribe to The Times, even though sure, I could afford it, because it would open the floodgates and I’d be subscribing to every damn paper in the world. Just like, one by one, I felt I had to get every TV stream I could.
    My longtime friend Tom, ex-neighbor, sends me clippings from the New York Times like we did 45 years ago. He gets the printed edition in Columbus every day. I liked my newspapers a lot more than reading from a screen.

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  13. Suzanne said on May 29, 2024 at 9:27 am

    My husband and I both had grandfathers who hated Archie Bunker but even though we were young, we understood that they were Archie Bunker so didn’t see anything humorous about the character. I grew up around people like Archie. Things he said were things I heard every day.

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  14. susan said on May 29, 2024 at 10:38 am

    If you want a sense of the life-force that was Bill Walton, listen to this Al Franken podcast. We lost another really good human too soon.

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  15. alex said on May 29, 2024 at 10:40 am

    I’m just astounded at how much bullshit has flooded the zone and how so many people are so undiscerning as consumers of information. Since about the summer of 2016 I’ve had the sense that things were really going off-kilter and it has only gotten worse. It kind of tracks, though, with the rise of cell phones and people getting sucked down the rabbit holes they find there, interacting less and passing so much of their time looking at crap.

    I mentioned that a formerly liberal friend has become radicalized and follows Ann Althouse. I looked at her blog today and here’s what she says about the hush money trial and possible house arrest if Trump is convicted:

    Immobilizing a political opponent — have we ever seen anything like this in the United States? We will see how much this outrages Americans and turns people toward Trump. I know it outrages me. I have a strong emotional reaction. I feel as though I’m keeping a vigil for Trump today.

    Her commentariat, of course, are saying far scarier and nuttier stuff and she invites it. She is very deftly feeding the narrative that Biden and the Deep State and George Soros control everything and that Trump is getting whacked the same as Alexei Navalny.

    I’m feeling absolutely paralyzed with fear about what’s happening.

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  16. Jeff Borden said on May 29, 2024 at 10:42 am

    To this day, I wonder how many viewers were laughing with Archie Bunker, not at him.

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  17. Icarus said on May 29, 2024 at 11:13 am

    this is an interesting read. The gist, if I have it correct, is that Millennials and Gen Z will stay home or vote for 3rd party rather than re-elect Biden, who has let them down.

    Given how Trump won in 2016 and Biden won in 2020 by the slimmest of margins in the battleground states, along with many Muslim Americans proclaiming they will vote for Trump out of protest, this gives me pause.

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  18. Dexter Friend said on May 29, 2024 at 12:57 pm

    A friend I have known for 54 years is making plans to live in Ireland if Trump wins in November. He’s serious, as he’s been there several times over the years, and he has ancestral roots there. He’s 76, and will never come back if he moves. He says I should move there too. Nope, not on my bucket list; I never had any desire to see Eire. I always wanted to see England and Holland. Never did…slacker, right?

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  19. David C said on May 29, 2024 at 1:46 pm

    I don’t know. I remember how the same type of people were ever so disappointed with Obama because the ACA wasn’t single payer and they surely couldn’t vote for him. Why in only he had pushed for it, it would have happened by magic even though he barely got the votes he needed for what we got. The millennials and gen-z I know are pretty level headed. They know the consequences of Trump. I’m not unduly concerned.

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  20. Sherri said on May 29, 2024 at 2:28 pm

    Strip-search Sammy notes that his wife is an independent private citizen and that he has always respected her right to make her own decisions.

    Now, why don’t millions of other women also have that respect from him?

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  21. Jason T. said on May 29, 2024 at 4:28 pm

    Bitter Scribe at 8:

    Lileks went around the bend during the Iraq War, but regained his senses. I can’t say the same for the people who comment on his website, however; at least half of them are foaming-at-the-mouth conspiracy theorists. (They naturally believe that he’s being sidelined by the newspaper because of “woke” ideology.)

    As someone who’s interested in mid-century pop culture esoterica, I used to really like his work, but I’ve found him to be sloppy in his research, which is surprising, considering how much time he spends combing old newspapers and radio broadcasts.

    To take one example, he wrote a lengthy piece alleging that the ’60s rock singer Johnny Horton was a white supremacist going by the name “Johnny Reb.” Five minutes of fact-checking would have debunked that. The more I looked, the more mistakes I found; he never lets the facts get in the way of a good story.

    I don’t wish him any ill will, but I’ve cooled on him as a result.

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  22. Jeff Gill said on May 29, 2024 at 4:29 pm

    A longtime writer acquaintance just posted this which I imagine would be of interest to many here:

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  23. SusanG said on May 29, 2024 at 7:11 pm

    I grew up with two daily, local newspapers. We couldn’t come to the dinner table unless we’d read them both. We were expected to talk about and have opinions of what we’d read.

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  24. alex said on May 30, 2024 at 7:41 am

    Good story at SusanG’s link. It was called the Bloomington Herald-Telephone when I was in school there and I remember it being a fat paper for a city that size.

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  25. Bruce Fields said on May 30, 2024 at 9:02 am

    “Fairness Doctrine? Kaboom. No need to cover both sides. Entire networks now spew unadulterated lies with no penalties. Limits on media ownership? Kaboom.”

    I thought the simpler explanation is that journalism lost its main revenue stream–advertising–to others that figured out how to do it for less. So if you want villains, pick on Google, Craigslist, Facebook, and such. Though really someone else would’ve figured it out if they hadn’t. The root cause is just technological change.

    Which doesn’t make it any less of a problem.

    I think journalism should be publicly funded, personally, but what do I know.

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  26. Deborah said on May 30, 2024 at 9:24 am

    When I was a kid our family got the Miami Herald, my sister and I made a bee line for the funny papers, especially on Sundays. There was an afternoon paper which I don’t remember the name of, we didn’t subscribe. We wrapped our garbage in old newspapers and made paper mache sometimes but recycling was not invented yet, at least not that we knew of. Later I started reading columnists or sensational stories, maybe I was around 12 or so then. I started scanning it page by page after that.

    When I got out of college and got married first lived in Houston, we got the Houston Chronical. Then the Dallas Morning News when we moved there, the reporter that had happened to be at the Texas Theater where they had apprehended Lee Harvey Oswald many years before was a member of our church.

    When we moved to St. Louis we got the Post Dispatch. When I left my marriage I started getting the New York Times. Then I switched to only getting it on Sunday, and I’d walk down to the corner magazine store to buy it. I did that for years.

    After news started coming online I always got it that way and still do to this day. I haven’t touched newsprint in a long time.

    I don’t read the Chicago Tribune or the Sun Times.

    I do read the Santa Fe New Mexican from time to time but don’t subscribe. I also read the Rio Grand Sun online, which is the local weekly in a town near Abiquiu, I’ve mentioned here before.

    I currently subscribe to the NYT and WaPo online.

    We get the New Yorker and the Atlantic magazines in the Mail, occasionally read those online if I can’t wait for the print issue.

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  27. alex said on May 30, 2024 at 10:03 am

    An “Apprentice” producer’s NDA just expired and he’s free to blab. None of this is surprising and yet it is:

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  28. Jeff Borden said on May 30, 2024 at 12:18 pm

    Bruce Fields,
    No question the newspaper industry was gutted by new technologies and failed to recognize the extreme danger before it was too late. They are, in many ways, the authors of their own demise.

    That said, before Reagan there were limits on how many radio and TV stations could be owned by one entity, but now a half dozen powerhouses own everything. And the Fairness Doctrine would’ve gutted Rupert Murdoch’s business plan for Fox.

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  29. Jeff Borden said on May 30, 2024 at 12:31 pm

    Melinda French Gates is donating $1 billion to support women’s causes. This gave me an idea:
    Offer Strip Search Sammy and Old Clarence $500 to quit SCOTUS. Both men are corrupt, immoral and quite attached to the luxury lifestyles their wealthy friends bestow on them. Maybe they’d take the money and run.

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  30. David C said on May 30, 2024 at 12:37 pm

    The Telecommunications Act of 1996 happened under Clinton but it passed the Senate 81-18 and unanimously in the house, so it wouldn’t have made any difference if he vetoed it. Funny what you can get done in Washington by spreading a few bucks around and having a triangulating President. Pretty much everything the critics said would happen happened (media concentration) and nothing the proponents said would happen happened (opening media up to smaller players). Funny how it always seems to work that way.

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  31. Jason T. said on May 30, 2024 at 1:55 pm

    The Telecommunications Act of 1996, yes. But also the gutting of anti-trust regulations in the United States.

    Google and Facebook between them now control 60 percent of all digital advertising. They pay news publishers pennies and keep the dollars for themselves.

    Their destruction of the “advertising-pays-for-the-content” business model is what has really decimated local news.

    Three companies control 1,500 commercial radio stations in the U.S. — more than the next seven companies combined. Each of those companies took on enormous amounts of debt to buy up radio stations in large markets, and the only way to service that debt is to cut local content.

    (That’s the same pattern now being repeated at print and web news publications — sell ’em to private equity, load ’em up with debt, strip the assets, cut the content, and then go Chapter 11.)

    Such monopolies would have been unthinkable until the Reagan Era; both Republican and Democratic administrations would have stopped them, or broken them up.

    The big media companies also protect their interests by running far-right talk shows that spend 24 hours per day, 7 days per week, railing against government inference. It’s a self-licking ice cream cone.

    Reagan lit the fire; Clinton dumped gasoline on it. Both Democratic and Republican administrations were worried about being “business-friendly” to the exclusion of all else, including the “public interest, convenience, and necessity.”

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  32. Jason T. said on May 30, 2024 at 2:00 pm

    “But don’t you run the trains for the accommodation of the public?” the reporter asked Billy Vanderbilt.

    “The public be damned!” Vanderbilt roared.

    We’re deep into the new gilded age. At least we got libraries and symphony halls out of the first one. What are we getting out of this one? Nerds building penis-shaped rockets to fly themselves to the moon.

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  33. Julie Robinson said on May 30, 2024 at 2:40 pm

    We’ve gotten a couple of ex-wives using their money in positive ways. We’ve also gotten one trying to buy the vice-presidency, but I digress.

    If someone comes for a visit and they have to have a beer to calm down from driving, and they brought that beer with them in cooler, do you think they have a problem? And then have two drinks when you go out to eat? Or are they just cutting loose while on vacation? I’m not really around drinkers anymore and I truly don’t know.

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  34. David C said on May 30, 2024 at 2:51 pm

    Sounds like my brother and sister-in-law. They brought a 24 pack and beer and a half liter of whiskey when they stayed with my mom before dad died. When my sister and I did it we managed to do it sober. It seems like too much to me, but I’m as close to a teetotaler as your can get without being a teetotaler. The amount of alcohol they put down in a week would probably last me five years.

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  35. Sherri said on May 30, 2024 at 2:53 pm

    I’m watching media companies like Vox and The Atlantic announce partnerships with OpenAI and am amazed that they’ve learned nothing from the previous terrible partnerships with Facebook.

    Sam Altman is a lying conman, and OpenAI is not a trustworthy partner.

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  36. Jeff Borden said on May 30, 2024 at 2:59 pm

    Jason T.,

    Thanks for reminding us of the role played by Bill Clinton. He and that damned DLC, which became more like Eisenhower Republicans as time wore on.

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  37. Dorothy said on May 30, 2024 at 3:29 pm

    Julie I don’t drink much either, but to me their behavior signals that (1) they knew you would not have beer on hand so they brought their own and (2) they didn’t even entertain the idea of managing without beer in the interest of making a good impression when they arrived. There’s a need there that they are telegraphing, and to me that would be worrying.

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  38. David C said on May 30, 2024 at 4:53 pm

    We have a verdict! It will be announced within a half hour.

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  39. ROGirl said on May 30, 2024 at 5:08 pm

    Guilty on 34 counts!

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  40. Deborah said on May 30, 2024 at 5:20 pm

    Yay!!!! What this means now is anyone’s guess. But oh my god, this is wonderful right now.

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  41. alex said on May 30, 2024 at 5:30 pm

    Speaking of ex-wives and their fortunes, you think Melania will get much of anything? And if she does, will she part with any of it to do anything good in the world?

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  42. Bob (not Greene) said on May 30, 2024 at 5:33 pm

    Now we’ll see if anyone cares, because that’s where we are in this country, right now.

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  43. alex said on May 30, 2024 at 5:38 pm

    You bet they’ll care. The right wing is about to have a shit fit and the usual suspects will continue to pretend that Biden was the puppet master behind a charade and that we’re living under tyranny.

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  44. Bob (not Greene) said on May 30, 2024 at 5:44 pm

    I’m talking about whether Donald Trump being guilty of actual crimes will make anyone care enough to change their vote or motivate them to vote against him, because electing a criminal to the U.S. presidency ought not to happen. I’m talking about those people, not the irredeemable assholes who applaud open treason. They’re long gone.

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  45. Sherri said on May 30, 2024 at 5:47 pm

    Trump’s conviction is necessary but not sufficient, as they say in the mathematical proof business. It is an important step: he is now a convicted felon. It does not mean he won’t be elected, though I do believe it hurts his chances. His schtick is that he is a winner, and when he loses, that image takes a hit.
    A strongman who loses is not a strongman.

    Twelve brave citizens have done what countless Republicans have been too afraid to do: hold Trump accountable for his actions. That is worth celebrating, even if the work is not over!

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  46. FDChief said on May 30, 2024 at 5:55 pm

    1) It’s nice to know that every once in a blue moon some rich white guy gets what’s coming to him.
    2) That said, this will make not a hap’orth difference to the GQP. They love him because he’s THEIR crook.

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  47. Sherri said on May 30, 2024 at 6:00 pm

    Felons can’t vote in Florida, so there’s one vote Trump loses.

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  48. David C said on May 30, 2024 at 6:11 pm

    I’m betting Bootsie will have his lege pass a law that it doesn’t apply to out of state convictions.

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  49. Peter said on May 30, 2024 at 6:16 pm

    …..deep breath…..

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  50. Sherri said on May 30, 2024 at 6:35 pm

    Apparently, if the state you’re convicted in would allow you to vote, Florida will allow you to vote. Since New York only prohibits incarcerated felons from voting, as long as Convicted Felon Trump is not incarcerated at the time of the election, he is eligible to vote in Florida, even though he wouldn’t be were he convicted in Florida.

    Florida passed a voting restoration initiative for felons by a huge margin, but the legislature immediately modified to make it as confusing as possible, cause they don’t want those darkies voting. That’s why felon disenfranchisement exists to begin with.

    Anyway, twelve ordinary New Yorkers are my heroes today; I hope we never find out their names, because I don’t want them to get death threats.

    The GOP has an opportunity to demonstrate some backbone and integrity, and refuse to nominate a felon. We know they will nominate him anyway, even if he’s incarcerated.

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  51. tajalli said on May 30, 2024 at 6:53 pm

    The schadenfreude is strong with us.

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  52. brian stouder said on May 30, 2024 at 6:54 pm

    What Peter said!!!

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  53. Deborah said on May 30, 2024 at 6:55 pm

    I haven’t been this happy in a while. Please don’t rain on my parade. I was so afraid there would be a hung jury. The fact that they came to the decision this quickly is telling if you ask me. Right now he’s a convicted felon and he will be sentenced July 11th. I doubt he’ll be sent to prison but I don’t even care. He’s a convicted felon now and I’m so grateful for that brave jury.

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  54. David C said on May 30, 2024 at 7:06 pm

    Maybe they’ll delay the sentencing by five days so it can be my birthday present. It would be the best birthday present given to me by the government since Apollo 11 launched on my birthday.

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  55. tajalli said on May 30, 2024 at 7:16 pm

    HuffPost headline describes him as “stonefaced” but to me he looks like he’s about to cry. I’d really like to see him cry.

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  56. icarus said on May 30, 2024 at 9:39 pm

    So all those people who oppose no bail release are doubling down now, right? Wait, what!

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  57. Sherri said on May 30, 2024 at 11:03 pm

    Yusef Salaam, one of the Central Park Five who is now a NY City Council member, puts out a very gracious statement about the Convicted Felon.

    I’d love to see the rejected statements. You know there’s got to be some good ones.

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  58. Dorothy said on May 31, 2024 at 6:55 am

    I was afraid to say it out loud but my gut was telling me that he’d be found guilty. The speed with which they reached the verdict told me I was right and Lordy but I was joyful as they read each verdict out loud while I watched Deadline:Whitehouse. He’ll definitely appeal but I think that will take time. Now if we can get the Georgia case moving along, and if Jack Smith gets a different judge to try the documents case in Florida, we should all have tremendous hope that the newly convicted felon will be in all of our rearview mirrors sooner rather than later.

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  59. Mark P said on May 31, 2024 at 10:18 am

    There is no question that Trump did all the things that are in the charges against him in all the cases he is facing. The only question is whether his minions prevent a fair trial. The Republicans in Georgia are trying to undermine his election fraud case. The corrupt and incompetent judge in the secrets trial is blatantly undermining the prosecution, and that is probably the most serious case in which he is obviously guilty, a fact that no one can honestly deny. And ultimately the corrupt Supreme Court hacks will protect him no matter what the outcome of his earlier appeals. I suspect that if the appeals on his current conviction reach the Supreme Court, all will be overturned. It will be interesting to see whether the courts speed up the appeals process instead of slowing it down.

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  60. alex said on May 31, 2024 at 10:25 am

    And our local media feature Jim Banks, asshole congressman soon to be our senator:

    “It’s a sad day for our country, as Joe Biden and his liberal cronies have advanced their election interference plot. Joe Biden is behind all of this because he knows he can’t beat him at the ballot box. It’s a complete and total SHAM, and it has been since the beginning. Look at the facts: Corrupt DA Alvin Bragg is funded by Biden donors, Judge Juan Merchan donated to Biden and his daughter works for high-profile Democrats, and lead prosecutor Matthew Colangelo was formerly a top official in Biden’s weaponized Department of Justice. There was no way for this to be a fair trial. While these New York jurors may have been willing to play a part in this sham, the American people recognize that these charges amount to nothing more than election interference orchestrated by the Biden administration. I stand with Donald J. Trump, and the American people do too.”

    Press releases from Republicans. That’s one way to fill space when you’re understaffed.

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  61. annie said on May 31, 2024 at 11:30 am

    I’m speaking as someone who has acquaintances &, sadly, relatives, who are trump supporters. most of them acknowledge his venality & even agree he is guilty, but they DON’T CARE! they say they are putting country before personality.

    even if we get rid of trump, donald junior is waiting in the wings. who do the democrats have?

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  62. Jeff Gill said on May 31, 2024 at 11:34 am

    Wisely, I note his lawyers are NOT standing next to him as he’s making today’s speech about the case & verdict.

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  63. alex said on May 31, 2024 at 11:42 am

    And the press is giving Trump a podium from which he’s spewing the most inflammatory and ridiculous lies from his butthole mouth. Venezuelan terrorists from the country’s empty prisons are living in luxury hotels in Democrat-run cities while military veterans are living on the streets, terrorists who speak languages we’ve never even heard of are flooding the borders. I mean, how stupid do you have to be to believe anything this conman says?

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  64. Sherri said on May 31, 2024 at 2:04 pm

    The Convicted Felon’s supporters don’t care that he lies and cheats, because they care that he will keep at bay the multicultural multiracial democracy they fear.

    But Democrats should refer to him as Convicted Felon at every opportunity. Dems complain that the press magnify their minor flaws and ignore the Convicted Felon’s major ones, but they contribute to this by “taking the high road” and expecting the press to do the work for them. Hunter Biden is in the news because Republicans hold hearings about Hunter Biden; Democrats could hold hearings about Strip Search Sammy, instead of just asking if John Roberts would pretty please do something.

    Supposedly Biden’s campaign has no plans to do anything to incorporate the fact of the convictions. That’s terrible.

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  65. Icarus said on May 31, 2024 at 2:38 pm

    it’s times like these that I wish I hadn’t unfriended all those rightwing nut friends of mine. I’d love to see how they are melting down right about now.

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  66. Julie Robinson said on May 31, 2024 at 3:09 pm

    The answer to that is bigly. I’ve blocked but not unfriended a couple of MAGATS, for times I feel my blood pressure is too low and my system needs a jump. It’s very predictable; parroting the 34 time convicted felon, upside down flags, cursing out the judge and prosecutor, and praying for the soul of the country. You didn’t think they had any original ideas, did you? It’s been proven they don’t.

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  67. alex said on May 31, 2024 at 3:12 pm

    Biden finally broke his silence and gave a very dignified, measured statement about the rule of law and respect for a jury’s decision. Sure, we all would love to see him gloat, but that wouldn’t do his campaign or the country much good. He’ll let his surrogates do that for him.

    Trump may get a harsher sentence simply for being remorseless and trash-talking the judge and the court. If he doxes the jurors he could really land himself in a heap of trouble. I have a feeling he’s going to dig himself his political grave here if he doesn’t STFU.

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  68. Suzanne said on May 31, 2024 at 3:49 pm

    Good old Indiana Congressional Rep Jim Banks, soon to be Senator, already posted a pic of the “appeal to heaven” flag on his Twitter account. Because of course he did.

    George Conway, ex-husband of Trump shill Kellyanne Conway, is having a heyday on Twitter. He is on fire.

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  69. FDChief said on May 31, 2024 at 5:00 pm

    So Tucker Carlson posted this on (no link because fuck them both):

    “Import the Third World, become the Third World. That’s what we just saw. This won’t stop Trump. He’ll win the election if he’s not killed first. But it does mark the end of the fairest justice system in the world. Anyone who defends this verdict is a threat to you and your family.”

    Okay, it’s Tucker, so there are quadrupeds with larger brains, but, still…it’s all there, isn’t it? Scary immigrants, Trump the Hero, whacko conspiracy murder theory, MAGA (“fairest justice system”? Seriously?), it’s not Trump they’re after, it’s YOU!!!…

    And somewhere between 3 to 4 out of 10 “Americans” slurp up this nonsense without so much as a choke.

    What the hell are you going to do with these people? Can’t live with ’em, can’s shoot ’em. Well…

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  70. Sherri said on May 31, 2024 at 5:39 pm

    One thing that I think should get far more attention than it has: despite all the dire proclamations from the keyboard warriors and the QOP, how many protests in the streets did we see last night in response to the Conviction of the Felon?

    According to Tucker et al, the world ended, but all the MAGAts couldn’t be bothered to get up off their asses.

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  71. David C said on May 31, 2024 at 6:06 pm

    It’s going to be the same thing with the civil war they’re always yapping about. Uhhh, yeah. I was going to war against the libtards but the boss wouldn’t let me off work and I got a truck payment due.

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  72. Deborah said on June 1, 2024 at 10:58 am

    Off topic: Holy cow! I just got this long email from my niece who lives in Minneapolis. I’m putting the whole email here because it’s crazy.

    This happened on Thursday but it was too long to text. At work, I’m sitting in my cubicle. I sit near the door because I am backup in case any tenants come by and need anything. Sarah, our office manager, comes breathlessly into my cubicle. “There’s a man… with a gun… everyone needs to… get in the back…”

    I am so confused? What? Sarah is pale and shaking. Then she hollars to the entire office, “Everyone get to the back of the office!!” So we all clamour into the break room. Out the windows, we see there are about 50 cops with flashing lights surrounding our building.

    Apparently, Sarah and Samantha, who work up in reception, were sitting there and suddenly this guy creeps by in the hallway with his gun drawn. Sarah goes, “HOLY SHIT. Samantha, get in the server room!!” So the two of them crawl into the server room on their hands and knees and lock the door. Sarah calls 911 and says, “There’s a man with a gun in the hallway.”

    The 911 operator says that she already knows and that was probably a cop who walked by. The cops have the entire building surrounded and they’re trying to apprehend a suspect. The 911 operator tells Sarah to get everyone in the back and put the entire building on lockdown. The entire building (all 60 businesses) get locked into their suites.

    From here everything is a blur. I get curious so I head back up front. There are literally 30 or so sheriff deputies out in the hallway with their guns drawn. Our doors are locked, but we are the management office. Shouldn’t we be helping them?

    So I go get the property manager Mitch and explain that um, there are 30 sheriffs at our door?

    So then the sheriff bust in and they and Mitch go into Mitch’s office to look at the building’s cameras. They are trying to find a guy who apparently has a gun, who is hiding on the 3rd floor somewhere.

    The opposite side of us is a construction zone because the former tenants moved out and Suntide has been refurbishing the place. So you can hear all these sheriffs rummaging around in there going, “Sheriff’s office! Come out with your hands up!” Or whatever it is cops hollar in these situations.

    Cops are running past the door, all with their guns drawn. There’s even a freaking K9 dog running around.

    Most of my co-workers stayed in the break room and played cards during this entire ordeal. No way. I hung out around up front so I could be on the action.

    I fetched floor plans for the cops. So then they had a floor plan of the building. (It’s a really big building.)

    Then the Sheriff himself arrived. He is this really old guy named Sheriff Fletcher. (Fun fact: I worked on his reelection campaign back in the 2000s when he was young and cute. But now he is a bit old. Kind of like Gene Hackman.)

    The Sheriff was in shorts and flip flops. He comes into our office and I get a bit twitterpated. But he looks at the building’s cameras for a few minutes and then shrugs, “Well it looks like you got this under control.” So then he leaves after like 5 minutes!

    Finally, after about an hour of watching the building’s security cameras and scouring all the floors, Kristyn, our construction manager, goes to the cops, “You know where I bet he’s hiding? Up on the 4th floor, in the Unisex Bathroom.”

    Well sure enough the cops go up there and go, “Come out with your hands up!!” And they caught the guy. One of the cops came back down and said, “Whoever that young lady is, give her a raise!!” So Kristyn was the hero.

    After that the building came off lockdown. But the building was still swarming with cops. I went down to the vending area and there were all these cops in there buying Snickers and orange juice – they were hungry! But they were all strapped with these huge assault rifles flung over their shoulders. It was so surreal.

    I found out later that it was originally 4 guys who stole a car and had a warrant out for a weapons violation. The cops chased 4 guys who crashed into the light rail station outside our building. 1 guy they caught right away; he could be seen from our window in handcuffs. 1 guy got away. 1 guy they caught on the 3rd floor (which was why there were so many cops running around) and it was that 4th guy who was hiding in the 4th floor bathroom.

    One of the stories I heard later is that there were these window cleaners who were cleaning the building’s windows. And suddenly these cops on the ground were yelling at them, “GET THE FUCK DOWN!!” So the window washers had to rappel down to the ground, scared out of their minds.

    But one guy couldn’t rappel down, so he had to go back up to the roof. Well then that confused the cops because they could see a guy running around on the rooftop and they assumed he was the gunman….

    So then the cops were telling Mitch that the gunman was on the roof, but really it was just some poor window washer. I think Mitch had to let the cops onto the roof, guns out, and then they discovered it was just the window washer with his hands up….. Poor guy. I don’t even think he spoke English.

    Also every time someone had to go to the bathroom they had to be escorted by a cop who had to clear the hallway first. Thank god I didn’t have to pee.

    I told this story a bit out of order. But wow, it was all quite exciting!

    I keep saying cops but they wore brown and they had the word SHERIFF on their backs. So they were with the sheriff’s office.

    I wish I could send you a link but it didn’t make the news because nobody died or anything…. It was just crazy.

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  73. brian stouder said on June 1, 2024 at 12:35 pm

    Deborah, I’ll take that outcome every time! I s’pose we’ve always had the random deranged joker possibility, but indeed- RDJ’s have easy access to much more capable weaponry in the here-and-now

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  74. alex said on June 1, 2024 at 2:35 pm

    Wow, Deborah. Thanks for sharing.

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  75. Deborah said on June 1, 2024 at 3:20 pm

    I was concerned that my niece didn’t stay in the back room with the other folks but she said that the cops were surprisingly very calm through the whole thing and she’s a petite, white woman with shock of red hair. She said If she had been a black or brown guy she would have stayed back. I would have freaked out either way. She was even able to help a little bit. It’s a great story but could have turned out horribly.

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  76. Joe Kobiela said on June 1, 2024 at 4:04 pm

    Congratulations you perfectly showed the difference between the left and the right, the verdict didn’t go the way we were hoping, so yea instead of burning down our neighborhoods, looting our grocery stores and attacking the police, we just went back to work so we can pay our bills, not live off the government tit, and continue to support a candidate of our choosing.
    Sorry you’re disappointed.
    Pilot Joe

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  77. alex said on June 1, 2024 at 4:38 pm

    And Joe@75, you showed the difference between people having a thoughtful discussion versus a dipshit throwing around flimsy racist stereotypes. Very useful illustration when the subject is MAGAts.

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  78. Jim said on June 1, 2024 at 4:58 pm

    Here’s a helpful link to see who all is “on the government tit” by political persuasion (and other stuff):

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  79. brian stouder said on June 1, 2024 at 5:08 pm

    Alex – AMEN!!!!!

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  80. Joe Kobiela said on June 1, 2024 at 5:20 pm

    I’m sorry Alex where did I mention race?
    Pilot Joe

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  81. David C said on June 1, 2024 at 5:33 pm

    Your side is talking about doxxing the jurors and killing them so that’s not much of a plus for your side, Joe.

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  82. Jason T. said on June 1, 2024 at 6:51 pm

    I mentally replace all of Joe’s comments with “I like pie.” Mmm. Pie.

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  83. Deborah said on June 1, 2024 at 10:00 pm

    Right wing violence to come but not now this should hopefully be a gift article.

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  84. Julie Robinson said on June 1, 2024 at 10:10 pm

    PJ, there are 10 United States Senators who are refusing to do their jobs. You do not speak truth.

    Deborah, in your niece’s shoes, I would have been terrified and possibly peeing my pants. But I suppose it’s something we all need to be prepared for anymore, right?

    Things that make you go hmm…refilling one of my mom’s prescriptions online, and the cart says it will cost $50 instead of zero. There hasn’t been an insurance change, so I thought I’d wait until Monday to call in. Then I decided to poke around on the site, and after going through the “price my prescription” process, I went back to the order page and suddenly it was zero again.

    She could afford the $50, but the look on her face when she thought she’d have to pay? Like the face of so many privileged people who’ve been asked to share a little bit of their wealth. It was simply unimaginable to her.

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  85. alex said on June 1, 2024 at 10:36 pm

    Government tit or no, I’ve felt quite fortunate of late when purchasing insulin. I was at Meijer the other day picking it up and the cost came up as zero, prompting the clerk to comment “Wow, sometimes insurance does what it’s supposed to do. That would have been seven hundred and something.”

    I don’t know how much of this is the result of Biden’s efforts to make insulin affordable to all, or the subsidies he made possible so that my marketplace health plan isn’t making me choose between eating cat food or taking my meds, but I can’t imagine that these improvements are lost on the voting public, whatever Rasmussen Reports might say to the contrary.

    I’m still paying a fair amount out of pocket for other meds, but it’s not like it was under my employer health plan, where I was getting screwed and they couldn’t even throw in a fucking tube of K-Y. Yay government! Yay Biden!

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  86. Deborah said on June 2, 2024 at 9:15 am

    There’s apparently a phenomenon called “The Liars Dividend” where when politicians lie about scandals they were involved in, it works, and it especially works when they lie even further that it’s fake news that their political opponents have concocted to defeat them. Obviously like the convicted felon Trump has used to appeal to his base that he is being persecuted regarding his indictments and conviction by Biden and Democrats in general, that he’s really innocent and his political opponent is the one that is guilty of a disgraceful hit job. Brian Klaas describes this phenomenon, hopefully you can read this link

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  87. FDChief said on June 2, 2024 at 1:21 pm

    As is always the case with wingnuts, ol’ Joe glides right over the time when “his side” threw a riot over his guy losing and tried to overthrow the damn government.

    It’s always projection, eh?

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  88. brian stouder said on June 2, 2024 at 2:36 pm

    FDC – no fair !!! Sometimes protecting and defending The Constitution, and championing The Rule of Law entails killing this or that policeman, and/or ransacking the capitol city of the United States. The great and vastly mis-understood slave owner Bobby Lee should be added to Mt Rushmore, doncha’ know?

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  89. jcburns said on June 2, 2024 at 3:03 pm

    Joe Kobiela: “Jan 6 was bad and some people went way over board.”

    Okay, so…there are people in the Jan 6 thing who didn’t go way over board? There were people who just kinda yelled outside? And that was OK? Or…?

    [Wait, did Joe delete his comment?]

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  90. Deborah said on June 2, 2024 at 5:11 pm

    I didn’t know you could delete a comment?

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