Thursday, February 11

Mark (sic) Armbender: Weak Weasel

If you spot this creature,*
steer clear!

He's just educated enough to do some damage, and just weak enough not to under- stand ethics.

You've been warned...

ADDED:  I wonder if he was included on the original Journolist list or the double-secret probation clubs that allegedly sprung up following Weigel's firing.  They are not tradesmen, that's for sure....

DOUBLE CHECK:  Surprise, surprise...
Men, men, men, men, manly men! Woohoohoo.
Don't trust anyone! Especially not those playing journo-lists!

* You won't find him in the wild.  Men like this have never dirtied their loafers or survived one night in natural circumstances without special privileges.  Summer camp away does not count. (Nor do those few years in Latin America growing local economies and meeting the natives. Sorry.)

BULLSHIT:  Armbender explains:
“It made me uncomfortable then, and it makes me uncomfortable today,” said Ambinder. “And when I look at that email record, it is a reminder to me of why I moved away from all that. The Atlantic, to their credit, never pushed me to do that, to turn into a scoop factory. In the fullness of time, any journalist or writer who is confronted by the prospect, or gets in the situation where their journalism begins to feel transactional, should listen to their gut feeling and push away from that.”

You have to have that Harvard-educated, grown-man gutcheck BEFORE you agree to the conditions and sell your work out.  Everything Armbender has published in the last decade is now suspect... he doesn't get a pass because he's pretty.

Think of it this way:
If he were a contractor cutting corners like this, the suspected houses would begin to show the false construction by now.  We hold our newsmen to nothing less in their "story telling".  Get it?   Anyone can pimp themselves for access, power, status or money.  That's easy, and common in Washington, I am told.  Bought and sold.  Scoop factory, Inc.

But nobody pretends it's advantageous, smart or ethical in the long-run to be for sale like that... Ask Marco Rubio.

There's not enough Change in the world, or this country even, to bring that about.

Wednesday, February 10

Speaking of Over the Top...

‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ Is Headed to Broadway

The producer Scott Rudin has acquired stage adaptation rights for Harper Lee’s novel and has hired Aaron Sorkin to adapt the story.

They don't write 'em like that anymore.
They just don't write 'em like that anymore.

I hope he doesn't play Boo Radley as a superhero of sorts, and leaves the old-school Atticus character alone.
ADDED:  It's not sounding optimistic:
“‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ is one of the most revered pieces of 20th century American literature,” Mr. Sorkin said in a telephone interview.

"It lives a little bit differently in everybody’s imagination in the way a great novel ought to, and then along I come. I’m not the equal of Harper Lee. No one is.”
 Along I come, eh?
That just sounds wickedly crude..

Be Prepared to Chill.

Is the Washington media ready to invest in parkas?

For months, Trump has employed a long-term strategy, never becoming too focused on the first few nominating contests and making regular appearances in the states to come. In the week between Iowa and New Hampshire, he ventured to South Carolina and Arkansas. This week, Trump will hold rallies in South Carolina on Wednesday, Louisiana on Thursday and Florida on Friday.

He seems happiest doing one major rally per day -- especially in places­ that rarely see presidential candidates -- and thousands easily pack into large arenas. But in New Hampshire, Trump experimented with small town hall meetings capped at 200, wandering around with a microphone instead of standing behind a lectern where he has long seemed most comfortable.
At three such events on Thursday and two more on Monday, Trump showed a softer, more personable side as he listened to locals share their problems: a father who lost his son to prescription drugs, a flight attendant who had to quit her job after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, a small-business owner who feels crushed by regulations.

This rush of events, often announced at the last minute, revealed just how disorganized Trump’s campaign can be. At Trump’s rally Monday night, hundreds of reporters had to wait outside in a snowstorm for at least 45 minutes because of a slow-moving and understaffed security line, even though the campaign had a rough head count ahead of time.

Simulated Student Essay. "C".

13 minutes ago
What Do You Think of Beyoncé’s ‘Formation’ and Her Performance at the Super Bowl?

What Do You Think of Beyoncé’s ‘Formation’ and Her Performance at the Super Bowl?

Are you a Beyoncé fan? What did you think of her performance of her new song “Formation” — with its implicit commentary on police brutality, Hurricane Katrina and black financial power — at the Super Bowl halftime show?
I watched the Superbowl halftime show, but I missed all the references to police brutality, black financial power, and Hurricane Katrina.  I couldn't really understand the lyrics, but I liked the dancing.  I did wonder though when, if ever, Beyonce will be able to perform in pants.  Her thighs are big, but then she is getting older and has a baby.  She does a lot of step-dancing routine, with her backup dancers, who also wear only tights and clothes from the waist up.  She and Bruno Mars did a lot of hip thrusting for their dancing, while the English man jumped around in his dancing style in rainbow-patched clothes and a band with rainbow-themed instruments.  He was trying to be energetic too, and the song's words and themes were secondary to the dancing and jumping.  The artistry had to be that way -- almost over the top;  ok, definitely over the top -- to radiate out to the cheaper seats in the stadium, in such a huge performance venue.

You couldn't hear the snippets of anybody's lyrics, but it was more about the dancing performance than the songs and lyrics.

So I hope I won't get graded down for missing all of the aspects of Beyonce's performance that you suggest in the prompt -- the implicit commentary that I dd not see myself -- but it ran through my mind that I do hope Beyonce, who is a married woman with a child and whose body is big and mature now, gets to put on pants someday while dancing, because then she will have the best chance of aging in her career if the artistry goes beyond choreographed dancing like she helped pioneer in Destiny's Child. 

I think Beyonce's body is like Serena Williams:  large, powerful thighs on display because of the athletic nature of both performances, but like Peyton Manning (who gets to wear pants) physically limited by age in performance.  What Comes Next?

Never an Honest Word...

When I Ruled the World:

I hear Jerusalem bells are ringing;
Roman cavalry choirs are singing...
~ Coldplay.

ADDED:  I was awake this past Saturday night when Bernie Sanders was on SNL with Larry David.  The woman comedian who plays Hillary Clinton had a skit:  mocking a woman who was urging toymakers to create a Sturdy Shoe Barbie.

When I watched that skit, I knew there was no way Hillary Clinton would win.  When we laugh at people like that character -- who bragged of working 60hours the past week in her baggage-claim job, while fully paying off her ranch-style house, albeit in a lousy school district, and older model car -- we laugh at the workers who used to make up the backbone of the Democratic party:  self supporting, proud, diverse.

Of all the jokers we could be laughing at together,
we're dividing up and mocking one another -- punching down at independent women, non-mothers -- playing it for laughs in the identity-stereotyping elite ranks.  Everyone loses, but some make out better than others in their losses.

"They'll take your soul if you let them...
Don't you let them."

STARTED a new document review project this week...  training began yesterday at 12:30pm, with Monday off.  Gotta get a jump on it now:  no bus, because that would be limiting to the express bus schedule.   I'm still hoping to get my 40 in, with some long days to come and Mass, maybe, this morning downtown at 6am before work...  St. Olaf's. (no kidding)

My Dad has the greatest line.  He's a regular churchgoer, but hasn't gone to Mass on Ash Wednesday for years.  "Ye are dust, and unto dust you shall return."  He says he gets it already, doesn't need an annual reminder from the Church.  He's right, he lives his life like he understands the Lenten sacrifice.  Austerity is not a good thing, but you can learn a lot from it.

Tuesday, February 9

Throwback Tuesday. (or, "Call Me Donald.")

Hat tip:  Tom and Mom (with an assist from Myles.)

ADDED:  And it goes without saying... big hat tip to Dad*.  We never got to design and build a pinewood derby racer together, but we built efficient bridges**, measured by the end weight of the structure (here, balsa wood and glue) and the capacity held.

Glynn bridges never held the most, necessarily, but we always won on the efficiency score = lesser loads on more compact lightweight frames.

*  Did your Dad have a have a vise mounted in the basement workshop, to perfectly hold a balsa wood structure while the glue dried overnight(s)?  Mine had the tools, the knowledge, and most importantly, the patience (and hereditary fine motor skills!) to direct and oversee production, teaching me more via that contest than I ever got out of a physics text.  (Loved the Mr. Feynman books, though -- Surely You're Joking; and What Do You Care What Other People Think?)

** The bridge is tested to collapse, so every advancement in competition meant a new bridge built, better than the previous round, learning and adjusting designs.  I included one of my "crushed" bridges to accompany one of the three essays I wrote about in my Northwestern application;  I'm convinced that helped get me in to Medill in 1986:  a journalism major, with the typical high school newspaper/yearbook editor positions, but with hands-on physics experimentation and experience in competition at IIT too.

Thanks, guys, for helping me learn to compete... and teaching me how to open doors, and windows, for myself.  You are loved, never forget it.

IN OTHER NEWS:  Yesterday kicked off the Year of the Monkey in the Chinese new year... May she be good to us all !!!

Monday, February 8

Call Them Winners

After Super Bowl Win, Denver’s Defense Has Everything but a Good Nickname

Orange Rush? Kool and the Gang? Whatever its moniker, the Broncos’ defense, which shut down the N.F.L.’s most prolific offense, can be compared to the most dominant defenses in league history.
Thank God for sports, where we don't have to talk about racial differences and make excuses.  This was simply one team beating another on the field.  If you don't like it, talk about the half-time entertainment or the commercials.
TV coverage criticism:
Late in the fourth quarter, CBS Sports' Jim Nantz asked Phil Simms, an analyst, what he thought of Denver running on third-and-9. Simms said that he was not surprised and that it actually was the smart move.
“They’re watching the same game we are,” Simms said, adding that Denver was surmising that if it punted, Cam Newton and the Panthers would not be able to march down the field to score the go-ahead touchdown.

Simms’s view was vindicated when Newton fumbled on the ensuing series and the Broncos scored, and added a 2-point conversion, to go up, 24-10.

Manning was one of the main story lines heading into the game — the superstar-in-twilight who had adjusted his once-great passing game into a mastery of game management. He had been injured this season, missing six games, and few would have expected him to return to lead the Broncos to the Super Bowl, let alone guide them to victory.

So while it has been clear that his throwing abilities have faded, CBS did not effectively illuminate that aspect of the story as it should have. ...  An even tighter focus on Manning could have provided a more fascinating look at the oldest quarterback to start the Super Bowl. ...
Similarly, CBS could have done far better to underscore how the Denver defense handled Newton, who entered as a superhero apparently able to do anything on the field, especially in the postseason.
Where were the packages of two of Denver’s stars, Von Miller and DeMarcus Ware, and an insightful video analysis of how Denver shut down Carolina tight end Greg Olsen? Indeed, Denver’s defensive coordinator, Wade Phillips, deserved a greater focus on his strategy.

Friday, February 5

How Ted Cruz Won Iowa.

His campaign encouraged the lies about Ben Carson dropping out...

Cruz tried to dismiss it all as a “Trumpertantrum.”

The problem was that, in the whirlwind of Trump’s rage, there were some hard objects swirling around and banging into Cruz’s story.
Cruz has said that he won Iowa by being uncompromising and clever, with all those data-driven, micro-targeted canvassing runs part of what his campaign reportedly called the Oorlog Project. 
Then, on Monday evening, as the caucuses were assembling, Chris Moody, a CNN reporter, sent out three tweets in the space of two minutes.

The first referred to a flight that Carson would be catching that night; the second said that “Carson won’t go to NH/SC, but instead will head home to Florida for some R&R. He’ll be in DC Thursday for the National Prayer Breakfast.” The third, seconds later, noted that “Ben Carson’s campaign tells me he plans to stay in the race beyond Iowa no matter what the results are tonight.”

CNN’s on-air report also made it clear that the Florida trip was just a detour.

Nevertheless, the Cruz campaign sprung into action and retailed the second tweet, out of context, as news of the suspension of Carson’s campaign. The Cruz camp’s emphasis on quick, sophisticated communications meant that it could send a directive to spread the story to campaign workers in every Iowa precinct, but it also left behind a digital trail of tweets and e-mail alerts.

One of the tweets, from Representative Steve King, the campaign’s national co-chair, said, “Carson looks like he is out. Iowans need to know before they vote. Most will go to Cruz, I hope” and it was sent after the Carson campaign had issued clarifications.
Iowa is not the same as voting in private booths, without people publicly trying to win you over.

Happy Friday, friends!

"You're...well actually yeah, okay..."

Sean T. Collins ‏@theseantcollins 4h4 hours ago

I served with Henry Kissinger. I knew Henry Kissinger. Henry Kissinger was a friend of mine.
Senator, you're...well actually yeah, okay*
0 retweets 4 likes
Sean T. Collins Retweeted
Tim Dickinson ‏@7im 4h4 hours ago
@theseantcollins i was delighted when an un-indicted war criminal praised my managerial prowess
1 retweet 5 likes

Sean T. Collins added,
that's the actual quote? good lord, he's a genocidaire

Sean T. Collins Retweeted Tim Dickinson
Tim Dickinson @7im
" I was very flattered when Henry Kissinger said I ran the State Department better — better than anybody had run it in a long time."
1 retweet 6 likes

* Being conscious of the age difference, just in case...

Look at the Refugee Count, Hill-o?

“I was very flattered when Henry Kissinger said I ran the State Department better than anybody had run it in a long time."

This is not a good thing, hun.
You've planted your flag on a false hill there.

I've said it before, I'll say it again: Had the United States not intervened by pumping weapons into the rebel forces and supporting them with airstrikes, the Syrian Army would have put down any resistance long ago. That would have been better overall -- less painful -- to the people of the region. We're only prolonging their pain, putting people on the run, and flooding their country with the weapons we abhor here at home.

Realistically, sometimes you can't make winners out of losers, and you do more harm than good in backing a losing side in the long run. Hillary doesn't know how to win. And she does herself a disservice clinging to Henry Kissinger's skirts, at this late date.

Thursday, February 4

Just... Why?

Is it a Bobby Franks thing?

This terrible crime was inherent in his organism, and it came from some ancestor... Is any blame attached because somebody took Nietzsche's philosophy seriously and fashioned his life upon it?... It is hardly fair to hang a 19-year-old boy for the philosophy that was taught him at the university.

Now, your Honor, I have spoken about the war. I believed in it. I don't know whether I was crazy or not. Sometimes I think perhaps I was. I approved of it; I joined in the general cry of madness and despair. I urged men to fight. I was safe because I was too old to go. I was like the rest. What did they do? Right or wrong, justifiable or unjustifiable—which I need not discuss today—it changed the world. For four long years the civilized world was engaged in killing men. Christian against Christian, barbarian uniting with Christians to kill Christians; anything to kill. It was taught in every school, aye in the Sunday schools. The little children played at war. The toddling children on the street. Do you suppose this world has ever been the same since? How long, your Honor, will it take for the world to get back the humane emotions that were slowly growing before the war? How long will it take the calloused hearts of men before the scars of hatred and cruelty shall be removed?

We read of killing one hundred thousand men in a day. We read about it and we rejoiced in it—if it was the other fellows who were killed. We were fed on flesh and drank blood. Even down to the prattling babe. I need not tell you how many upright, honorable young boys have come into this court charged with murder, some saved and some sent to their death, boys who fought in this war and learned to place a cheap value on human life. You know it and I know it. These boys were brought up in it. The tales of death were in their homes, their playgrounds, their schools; they were in the newspapers that they read; it was a part of the common frenzy—what was a life? It was nothing. It was the least sacred thing in existence and these boys were trained to this cruelty.

It will take fifty years to wipe it out of the human heart, if ever. I know this, that after the Civil War in 1865, crimes of this sort increased, marvelously. No one needs to tell me that crime has no cause. It has as definite a cause as any other disease, and I know that out of the hatred and bitterness of the Civil War crime increased as America had never seen before. I know that Europe is going through the same experience today; I know it has followed every war; and I know it has influenced these boys so that life was not the same to them as it would have been if the world had not made red with blood. I protest against the crimes and mistakes of society being visited upon them. All of us have a share in it. I have mine. I cannot tell and I shall never know how many words of mine might have given birth to cruelty in place of love and kindness and charity.

Your Honor knows that in this very court crimes of violence have increased growing out of the war. Not necessarily by those who fought but by those that learned that blood was cheap, and human life was cheap, and if the State could take it lightly why not the boy? There are causes for this terrible crime. There are causes as I have said for everything that happens in the world. War is a part of it; education is a part of it; birth is a part of it; money is a part of it—all these conspired to compass the destruction of these two poor boys.

Has the court any right to consider anything but these two boys? The State says that your Honor has a right to consider the welfare of the community, as you have. If the welfare of the community would be benefited by taking these lives, well and good. I think it would work evil that no one could measure. Has your Honor a right to consider the families of these defendants? I have been sorry, and I am sorry for the bereavement of Mr. and Mrs. Franks, for those broken ties that cannot be healed. All I can hope and wish is that some good may come from it all. But as compared with the families of Leopold and Loeb, the Franks are to be envied—and everyone knows it.

I do not know how much salvage there is in these two boys. I hate to say it in their presence, but what is there to look forward to? I do not know but what your Honor would be merciful to them, but not merciful to civilization, and not merciful if you tied a rope around their necks and let them die; merciful to them, but not merciful to civilization, and not merciful to those who would be left behind. To spend the balance of their days in prison is mighty little to look forward to, if anything. Is it anything? They may have the hope that as the years roll around they might be released. I do not know. I do not know. I will be honest with this court as I have tried to be from the beginning. I know that these boys are not fit to be at large. I believe they will not be until they pass through the next stage of life, at forty-five or fifty. Whether they will then, I cannot tell. I am sure of this; that I will not be here to help them. So far as I am concerned, it is over.

I would not tell this court that I do not hope that some time, when life and age have changed their bodies, as they do, and have changed their emotions, as they do—that they may once more return to life. I would be the last person on earth to close the door of hope to any human being that lives, and least of all to my clients. But what have they to look forward to? Nothing. And I think here of the stanza of Housman:

Now hollow fires burn out to black,
And lights are fluttering low:
Square your shoulders, lift your pack
And leave your friends and go.
O never fear, lads, naught's to dread,
Look not left nor right:
In all the endless road you tread
There's nothing but the night.

I care not, your Honor, whether the march begins at the gallows or when the gates of Joliet close upon them, there is nothing but the night, and that is little for any human being to expect.

But there are others to consider. Here are these two families, who have led honest lives, who will bear the name that they bear, and future generations must carry it on.

Here is Leopold's father—and this boy was the pride of his life. He watched him, he cared for him, he worked for him; the boy was brilliant and accomplished, he educated him, and he thought that fame and position awaited him, as it should have awaited. It is a hard thing for a father to see his life's hopes crumble into dust.

Should he be considered? Should his brothers be considered? Will it do society any good or make your life safer, or any human being's life safer, if it should be handled down from generation to generation, that this boy, their kin, died upon the scaffold?

And Loeb's the same. Here are the faithful uncle and brother, who have watched here day by day, while Dickie's father and his mother are too ill to stand this terrific strain, and shall be waiting for a message which means more to them than it can mean to you or me. Shall these be taken into account in this general bereavement?

Have they any rights? Is there any reason, your Honor, why their proud names and all the future generations that bear them shall have this bar sinister written across them? How many boys and girls, how many unborn children will feel it? It is bad enough as it is, God knows. It is bad enough, however it is. But it's not yet death on the scaffold. It's not that. And I ask your Honor, in addition to all that I have said to save two honorable families from a disgrace that never ends, and which could be of no avail to help any human being that lives.

Now, I must say a word more and then I will leave this with you where I should have left it long ago. None of us are unmindful of the public; courts are not, and juries are not. We placed our fate in the hands of a trained court, thinking that he would be more mindful and considerate than a jury. I cannot say how people feel. I have stood here for three months as one might stand at the ocean trying to sweep back the tide. I hope the seas are subsiding and the wind is falling, and I believe they are, but I wish to make no false pretense to this court. The easy thing and the popular thing to do is to hang my clients. I know it. Men and women who do not think will applaud. The cruel and thoughtless will approve. It will be easy today; but in Chicago, and reaching out over the length and breadth of the land, more and more fathers and mothers, the humane, the kind and the hopeful, who are gaining an understanding and asking questions not only about these poor boys, but about their own—these will join in no acclaim at the death of my clients.

These would ask that the shedding of blood be stopped, and that the normal feelings of man resume their sway. And as the days and the months and the years go on, they will ask it more and more. But, your Honor, what they shall ask may not count. I know the easy way. I know the future is with me, and what I stand for here; not merely for the lives of these two unfortunate lads, but for all boys and all girls; for all of the young, and as far as possible, for all of the old. I am pleading for life, understanding, charity, kindness, and the infinite mercy that considers all. I am pleading that we overcome cruelty with kindness and hatred with love. I know the future is on my side. Your Honor stands between the past and the future. You may hang these boys; you may hang them by the neck until they are dead. But in doing it you will turn your face toward the past. In doing it you are making it harder for every other boy who in ignorance and darkness must grope his way through the mazes which only childhood knows. In doing it you will make it harder for unborn children. You may save them and make it easier for every child that sometime may stand where these boys stand. You will make it easier for every human being with an aspiration and a vision and a hope and a fate. I am pleading for the future; I am pleading for a time when hatred and cruelty will not control the hearts of men. When we can learn by reason and judgment and understanding and faith that all life is worth saving, and that mercy is the highest attribute of man.

I feel that I should apologize for the length of time I have taken. This case may not be as important as I think it is, and I am sure I do not need to tell this court, or to tell my friends that I would fight just as hard for the poor as for the rich. If I should succeed, my greatest reward and my greatest hope will be that for the countless unfortunates who must tread the same road in blind childhood that these poor boys have trod—that I have done something to help human understanding, to temper justice with mercy, to overcome hate with love.

I was reading last night of the aspiration of the old Persian poet, Omar Khayyam. It appealed to me as the highest that I can vision. I wish it was in my heart, and I wish it was in the hearts of all:

So I be written in the Book of Love,
I do not care about that Book above.
Erase my name or write it as you will,
So I be written in the Book of Love.
~ Clarence Darrow

The judge was persuaded; in September 1924 he sentenced both men to life imprisonment for the murder, and an additional 99 years for the kidnapping. Less than a month later Loeb's father died of heart failure.

America Helps Create Refugees.

We start the wars
that displace the peoples
who seek shelter in other lands.

If we go on the offensive deeper in Libya,
expect more African refugees to need resettling too.

Europe's Huddled Masses

A digital migration of epic proportions is underway. But America is nowhere to be seen on the refugee crisis.

Survey Says... No.

He should be strategically wise like Pontius Pilate on this one: refuse to decide on his own and throw the decision over to the people to own...
Likely does not hear historically smart advice these days though, from the advisers he's got close to him.

Obama Is Pressed to Open Military Front Against ISIS in Libya

The number of Islamic State fighters in Libya has grown to between 5,000 and 6,500, Pentagon officials said, more than double the estimate of last fall.

Wednesday, February 3

Pedestrian in the Crosswalk Killed

Yesterday at appr. 4:45pm at 8th and Hennepin.
The driver stopped, the woman was taken to HCMC,
but was severely injured and later died.

If you're driving in this,
slow down before you kill someone.

The storm that pushed up from the Iowa border and hit the Twin Cities at noon Tuesday dropped 1 to 2 inches of snow each hour, said Lisa Schmit, NWS meteorologist. The northern edge of the storm stretched roughly from Redwood Falls to St. Cloud to south of Duluth, Schmit said.
When all is said and done, some areas will have 10 or more inches of new snow. Snowfall amounts varied widely, with generally deeper totals south of the metro.
Looks like, it is starting to taper now...

*Bump from 2:44am.

February is Not Critical Thinking Month?

What is wrong with this question?
Think critically, and think about everything you've learned about diversity and the multiplicity of newcomers to America:

Student Question | Have You Experienced Racism or Other Kinds of Discrimination in School?

Do you think your school sometimes has a hostile environment for people of color, or for anyone who is in the minority there? If so, how much does that concern you?

Students: Write Ms. Schulten a letter asking if she thinks her automatic assumptions about racial victimization places obstacles in your learning paths. Do you think she understands racial discrimination? Why or why not? How is your response based on the limited personal characteristics you can identify from her name (race, ethnicity, gender)? How would you write a question prompt more openly to spur discussion?

Bushes are Like Vampires...

The fact that the family is not in hiding, and has a son still in the race tells you a lot about the quiet morality of our country these days. That will change.

America history will not treat these people kindly...

Jeb Bush, an Also-Ran in Iowa, May Be Pivotal in New Hampshire

How well Mr. Bush performs in New Hampshire and its influence on whether his campaign continues could shape the direction of the Republican presidential race.
Henry Kissinger will not be remembered kindly either, no matter how good he too has it today.

If you want to see ugly white privilege,
look no further. Now coming to New Hampshire.
See it in person, in 2016, the waning days of inherited empire...

Nevermind Leo and the Bear...

Taylor gets attacked by wolves?
(Turns out there's a video too.)

Train Kept A-Rolling...

All Night Long...
Train Kept a Rollin' All Night Long...

Evolving into...
Led Zeppelin's version.

All Aboard for the Night Train Then...

Turn it Up.

Tuesday, February 2

Early Out.

A sizeable snow storm hit Minneapolis today.  The whole region.  It likely would have shut down lesser cities, but here, people adjusted.  They closed our law office at 2:30pm, and I made my way -- standing-room-only -- onto the first express bus to Oakdale out of the city.  The driver was great!  She kept us moving, people conversed, and we made it to the park-and-ride safely.  Well spent $3; $6 RT.  We'll likely be off tomorrow too, schools perhaps closed, the whole cleaning-up thing.  The storm was good, in that it disrupted our routine, and brought people closer.  Otherwise today, I feel like I did the day I stayed home from school senior year to finish up a term paper and watched the Challenger explode. Do you know what I mean?

A little Funkadelic to play us out tonight, then...

Humble Pie:  30 Days in the Hole 

Mountain, Nantuckett Sleighride

Lee Michaels, Stormy (Tuesday)

He Needs to Overcome Himself.


Ms. Reed:
I’ve been undergoing radiation treatment for testicular cancer and, since I no longer have health insurance, I’ve been feverishly struggling and figuring out how to pay for my treatment. All of this, of course, has taken up my time and energy; except for the few moments I’ve spent searching for some relief.
With regards to verifying the comments, I’m in STL undergoing treatment, again, and not in NY, thus I lack access to my notebooks (which I took for most stories) to address these matters. Moreover, after finally looking over the notes sent to me, I must say this: I had a habit of writing drafts of stories, placing the names of ppl I wanted to get quotes from in there, and then going to fetch the quotes.
(Was it sloppy? Yes? But I’m a cub reporter and expected a sustained and competent editor to guide me, something which I never had at your company and something with which The Intercept continues to struggle as everyone in this business knows.)
But, I digress; back to the situation before us.
If I couldn’t obtain a quote from the person I wanted, I went somewhere else, and must’ve forgot to change the names—clearly. Also, yes I encouraged some of my interviewees to use another name; they’re poor black people who didn’t want their names in the public given the situations and that was the only way of convincing them otherwise. That also explains why some of them didn’t want to talk with your company’s research team or denied the events. These weren’t articles in Harpers or The Nation. Instead, these are the lives of people forgotten by society and their being in public and talking to white, NY people, no less, could harm and turn them off. They’ve lost loved ones to violence you and others couldn’t possibly imagine.
Ultimately, the journalism that covers the experiences of poor black folk and the journalism others, such as you and First Look, are used to differs drastically. This dilemma is the Great Problem with the white media organizations that dominate our media landscape. As Ta-Nehisi Coates wrote: “The standard [white] progressive approach of the moment is to mix color-conscious moral invective with color-blind public policy.” Such an approach ignores the differences in the way we must navigate these various fields: including journalism.
The comments from editors calling me a stray dog; the lower pay; the being told on a trip to DC that I “shouldn’t spend like it’s the first of the month”. I shrugged it all off.
I hope you and your company can understand all this and give me time to recover so that I may eventually look over my notes. I must say, though, it’s a very nefarious and ill liberal and anti humanist position to take if you do otherwise: kicking a cancer patient when he’s down. I’ve been through a lot tougher situations than this and will weather anything thrown my way.
Ms. Reed, I also just read Counsel Oberlander’s letter. I’m not in NY and have been sick and bed-ridden from radiation so of course I can’t return that laptop—that I also broke by the way. But if your company wishes to withhold my separation pay, which I was banking on for my treatment, go right ahead. I’m also owed reimbursement from the trip to DC which I haven’t received. But I’m not angry because, naturally, I didn’t bring this up because my focus is on much more important things.
Juan Thompson

Read the whole thing for the extent of the duplicity, including misrepresenting a 4-month internship at WBEZ in Chicago.  Just wow.
    Juan M. Thompson@JuanMThompson 21h21 hours ago
    Want to know what a Trump speech sounds like w/o the poll bragging and bravado? Listen to his speech tonight. #IowaCaucus
  1. Juan M. Thompson@JuanMThompson 21h21 hours ago
    .@realDonaldTrump in his concession speech sounded like the like rich white boy I beat for student council treasurer in school. #IowaCaucus
  2. Juan M. Thompson@JuanMThompson 21h21 hours ago
    .@realDonaldTrump in a VERY short concession speech sounds like he's been crying tonight. Those white tears are wonderful. #IowaCaucus
  3. Juan M. Thompson@JuanMThompson Jan 12
    4) Find out I have testicular cancer today and my parents abused by police state. Welcome to poor America. #SOTU

Thompson allegedly made up stories reporting on the South Carolina church killings, including fabricating a story with the white killer's alleged cousin that got picked up in the mainstream press.

Why Sanders Will Win Over Clinton...

The youth are not willing to mortgage the country's future to pay to protect the world.
Enough military spending already...

It really be a young v. old vote, and the youth at least understand the killing must end.
You can't kill your way to either peace or especially prosperity.  Pick one.

Pentagon Chief Calls for Spending Increase to Address Multiple Threats

Defense Secretary Ashton B. Carter said the United States no longer faced one threat at a time, but an array of opponents, as he previewed the Pentagon’s budget request for 2017.

Proudly Killing Journalists Now?

One man's terrorist is another man's freedom fighter.
One man's propaganda is another man's journalism.
Do Unto Others and all.

(Don't come crying foul when our own propagandists are killed or imprisoned if this is now a military tactic to target radio stations, not killers. Slippery slope and all...)

Airstrikes in Afghanistan Kill 29 Militants Affiliated With ISIS, Official Says

The official said the strikes also demolished a radio station known as the Voice of the Caliphate that had been broadcasting propaganda on behalf of the Islamic State.

I won't bother clicking the link, but what are the odds the official goes unidentified, speaking only on conditions of anonymity?

Nevermind the Campaign Sillies, Read the News.

U.S. to Send Heavy Weapons to Europe to Deter Putin


The move is intended to signal to President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia that the West remains deeply suspicious of his motives.

So the answer is to disarm citizens here at home,
while stocking the world with "heavy weapons"?

What a winner we have in Mr. Obama's team.
It would serve the Democrats right for the country to elect a President Cruz.

If we want world wars, let's stop this pussyfooting around and elect a Republican already.

Yes We Can.

Survey Says... No.

Kerry seeks more financial contributions for fight against ISIS
At a meeting of nations that are fighting the militants, the secretary of state asked for help rebuilding towns destroyed by the fleeing occupiers.

This has to end somewhere...
let's pull the plug already.

John can solicit funds privately for his mission, like the religious believers do.

The American taxpayers are done, we're only breaking more things so we can pay to fix them. Stop already.

America helped to break Libya,
let's oust the bastards who thought that wise?

Isn't Marco Rubio just a poor man's Jeb Bush?

Rubio and Ryan?
Are you kidding me?

And Again.

I read the "news" coverage of the presidential campaign, and it seems to be all giggles and glee...

Meanwhile, Kerry is pushing the US to help overthrow ISIS in Libya, and the younger voters are still paying into their elders' Social Security.

Make it a great Tuesday, all!
Storms on the horizon here,
but we're well prepared.

I got some cooking in on my day off,
and the healthy activities are built into the routine.

I'd hate to have to be dependent on someone else to feed me.

Sanders, Cruz?

If the independent socialist managed to pull in half of Iowa's voters, he'll win the country outright when he returns to the coasts, where his youth base is educated. That's the story, people. The Democrats.

Ted Cruz might be able to split things up enough to win himself, as he's been doing throughout his career. But I wouldn't bank on it.

Hope you're not too hungover today, Washington "wonks".
There's work to do. Not everyone can sit on their ass and opine, afterall.

Not Thanksgiving yet, but I'm thankful for that!
Pace yourselves now, it's a long way til Super Tuesday.

Do you see your shadows this morning yet?

So We're Pretending Iowa Matters Now?


* Greetings to our coastal friends who have travelled inland though, to cover Iowa voters. The evangelicals even!

Made ya look!

(Keep Iowa green -- spend big on your comped expense accounts, people!)

Remember, every place you're seeing open spaces and snow? That's not really "open space", ripe for developing. That's where the country will be growing the food to feed the world once spring comes and the natural cycle returns to its active phase.

Thankfully, you'll all be gone home by then....
back fixing the world in Washington with your weapons.
Burn down the world to live yourselves. Who would want to live in a place like that?

(I don't think Washington understands how Life works, really. Nothing's real; it's all artificial and aged. Not in a good way either.)

** Look at the fake people who turn out for a State of the Union speech, or press club presidential comedy dinner. That's not real. If you pretend it is, you're crippling yourself, inside and out. And then, when you realize how crippled you've become "living" like that, you try to pass your costs onto innocent others...

That's not the way Life works though.
That's the way Washington works, when it does.
We should just let the whole thing fall down under its own weight.

*Enjoy all your airplane flights back, people. You can declare and pay your carbon tax when deplaning, and please do pass those costs along to your self-righteous employors, preaching at everyone to save the world.

Why don't they think of the world's children, and limit the carbons released with such excess as to fly that many out to Iowa? Hypocrites. The melting glaciers are weeping at the American media excess alone...

Monday, February 1


I never would have guessed that...

Are We Out of the Woods Yet?

Are We Out of the Woods Yet?
Are We Out of the Woods Yet?
Are We Out of the Woods?

~(That's)Taylor Swift(??)*
(nevermind the verses, I like the chorus!)
Remember: Mondays Rule the Week.
Make it a great day!

*I would team that with AWOLNATION's Hollow Moon (Bad Wolf).