It's been out there for a long time but it's really hit me today:
The anonymous mob with their death threats is a specific tool of governance being used by the Republicoup.
Not once, in any way or any words, has any member of the Republicoup uttered the smallest criticism. Death.
You may know the term "stochastic terrorism". It means, you don't know who will kill or who will be killed, but you know if you plant enough seeds of murder someone will die.
Whether it's a black kid shot by a cop, or a Muslim girl murdered,
or five journalists murdered in a newsroom, or some anonymous black pedestrian murdered by a white thrill-seeker on a sidewalk, or a respected college professor threatened and run out of her house,
OK, so I think Mitch McConnell is driving the bus. I think he's the top power in the ruling coup.
But he's not necessarily mapping out the route.
I'd bet one or more billionaires are doing that, are giving Mitch his instructions.
If I had to pick ->just one<- it would be:
Yup. Not the Koch brothers, not Mercer... Rupert.
Without Fox News this entire dance of death would be impossible.
When I listen to the guest talking heads on @DeadlineWH or even @TheLastWord and they speak of Congress, they always talk in terms of elections and bases and cowardice and primaries.
Some of you are aging.
There has -->never<-- been anything like this here.
This is not about losing primaries.
Yes, I realize that for years and years there has been a Congressional majority that pretended not to believe science. Lying, per se, is not new.
It has gone crazy.
And the golden Dipshit *did not* cause it.
When Mitch McConnell said, "We're not seating your judges, and we are most specifically not seating you Supreme Court nominee..."
The golden Dipshit was just a blip on the horizon.
If you wanted to increase to death toll and dollar cost from weather events, there are a few sure-fire techniques.
First, and most certain of success, is to relocate populations and built environments into low and coastal areas.
Next most certain is to increase paved area, although this won't work with fire, for instance.
Flood and water events are particularly on my mind with this thread.
A guaranteed way to worsen flooding is to drain swamps and wetlands, and then build there.
Death tolls can always be increased by increasing "flashiness", or suddenness of water rises.
Pavement is good. Channelizing, straightening, and paving upland watercourses will help too.
Of course, preventing the reintroduction of beavers is a sure-fire tool.
I've been working with this washed--out pond for years. This is a kind of representative photo, not taken today. Last April, in fact.
Nowhere near that much water today.
A thread - just a story, you know.
Here's that pic with pointers. The orange line points at the standing historic dam, at the wash-out point.
The red line points to some fill I put in some time before, last fall I think.
The purple line points to the mostly filled ditch that used to define the water level.
The ditch used to be too deep to drive the Ventrac across. The Ventrac would go up a city curb and not even know it. 2 big fat tires at each corner, 8 total, bends and twists in the middle, nimble.
I had to fill the ditch enough to get the Ventrac across to be able to mow the dam
Just a little background, not often mentioned in political chatter:
The reason we hold elections is to form governments.
The reason we need governments is to provide services that individuals can't provide, and companies can't make a profit on.
That's the "for the people" part.
For instance, if your town was under water, would you rather have a President who can make an inspirational speech, or one who could organize a convoy of food, water, and shelter?
If somebody shot up your kid's school, would you rather have *just* a President who could express grief and sympathy, or would it be better to also have a Congress who would work to keep the next school from getting shot up?
This is a serious question. I'm not blaming victims, I'm wondering about the future as it is visible from here.
What can society - all human society - do about low-lying island nations and states / territories?
I mean, it would be nice if technological society decided to take some serious action to alleviate global warming, but we're not.
And it's already too late to save New Orleans. Annapolis. Puerto Rico, except the mountains.
It's. A. Done. Deal.
The ocean is coming. It doesn't care
The world is covered with island nations that are going to become uninhabitable. The nation - this great nation, with its indescribable hubris, is wrapped with coastal lowlands that are going to become uninhabitable.
Yes, the economy appears to be doing well.
For starters, the federal government will be spending about 4 trillion dollars this year.
That is 4 billion dollars, one thousand times. 4 thousand times a billion dollars.
That kind of money tends to buy a lot of stuff.
About a quarter of that money is borrowed. In other words, here's a trillion dollars that the govt is spending that didn't exist in the economy last yeat.
The magical appearance of a billion dollars about a thousand times over the course of a year will buy a bunch of stuff.
At the same time, about a thousand billionaires each have a billion *extra* dollars that they didn't have last year.
Unlike you or me, billionaires don't spend all their money on shelter, groceries, and five thousand dollar suits.
They've got lots left over.
Hurricane coverage frustrates and angers me.
As a culture we spend 365 days of every year doing everything we can to insure that the next hurricane will be deadlier than the last one.
Our entire system warms the globe making storms more powerful.
We build more, bigger, more expensive homes and businesses in the paths of every hurricane in history.
We create a society of more people jammed into less area, less robust, less resilient, as we depopulate and underserve relatively safer regions.
Governments tell their people to get away from the storm, telling them there is no chance they'll survive them, while TV reporters rush in to be seen on TV... SURVIVING THE STORM.
And people say, It ain't killing the reporters.
Working on the pond again today.
For the money I spent on the equipment I am using I could have hired someone with a big machine to come fix my ponds. 1 day, 1 pond.
There are days when I wonder what I was thinking.
But I know what I was thinking.
We have 28 acres here, an old farmstead, some hilltop, hillside, creek bottom / immature riparian forest, some old buildings including the ones we live in.
There are us, dogs, cats, donkey, cow... And the wild children.
The wild children live up pretty close. The cats are barn / yard / outbuilding cats, neutered, portly, middle-aged, and the dogs are chihuahuas. They are *not* out chasing the wild children.
You really don't want your dog to catch a skunk.
I feel like I'm in a huge collapsing building. Pieces fall off the facade, the walls twist and turn, cracks spread through the foundation, walls crumble.
The entire public conversation is about the cracks and pieces.
"Did you see that crack? My god, look at that crack!"
2. Another one days, "Look at this huge hunk of concrete on the sidewalk! We'd better move it! Someone might trip on it!
Meanwhile the other guy is yelling, "There's a crack in this wall! Call the painters! Paint over the crack, quick!"
3. The whole fucking building is collapsing.
The hunks of concrete on the sidewalk really don't matter.
The cracks in the wall are part of the process.
The building is collapsing.
The building is - was - the republican (small r) system of government.
G and I have gotten to where we spend almost every free evening together listening to @DeadlineWH@NicolleDWallace (it's not as good when she's off) and to @maddow
It's gotten to the point where were talking about getting an online TV subscription.
This would be A Major Event in my life. I haven't participated in TV for 50 years.
TV isn't something you "watch". It's a system you participate in.
She's given me the go-ahead, but I haven't been able to do it yet.
For most of my life I read The Kansas City Star. Newspapers were the primary news source, even for decades after the invention of TV. And I listened to NPR. Those two things were pretty much all it took to remain reasonably well informed.
A few twitter-society words, just talking, you know?
Right now I'm not following back new followers. I guess it's not that polite, but what I'm trying to do is not get overwhelmed.
2. Some topics, tweets, and ideas get tweeted and retweeted thousands of times every minute. Sometimes I grumble about it, but that's stupid.
What is, is.
3. I try to be a positive resource for the community. I know that sounds kinda grandiose, but I mean well.
I try to present new or different views on events.
I don't dispute what events happen, but I do dispute much of the accepted interpretations of them.
"Free minds, free markets, free people."
Two blinks and a nod later @BillKristol tweeted it.
Meanwhile Democrats (a) don't have a slogan, and (b) lose a lot of elections.
Conservatives™ have pretty much claimed all the good stuff. They're lying, of course, but - lying works.
3. They believe in Mom, Apple Pie, and a magic government that never does anything for anyone with a net worth below one million dollars.
That's not exactly their words.
How can you argue against free minds? Free people? You can bury Free Markets between those...
. . a twory
. . . by Smole Hick
54 men joined together in secret to overthrow their government.
2. They held meetings, formed policies, wrote position papers, and planned amongst themselves.
The nation they lived in was about 1300 miles long but only a couple hundred miles wide at the wide parts. Their country stretched out along an ocean coast, from the tropics to the cold
3. This all took place before the invention of rapid long distance communication. The fastest means of mail or travel was by sailing ship along the 1300 mile ocean coast.
Where there were safe harbors, great cities grew up.
Major rivers provided a route for inland development.
So let's see...
Mitch McConnell blocked almost *all* of President Obama's judicial appointments.
Oh, did you miss that?
Then Mitch McConnell blocked Merrick Garland.
From the Supreme Court.
2. Then Mitch, the Russians, some Arabs, a few Israeli mobsters, and half a dozen multi-billionaire criminals put this dimwitted deranged golfer in the White House, and
THE ENTIRE MINDLESS PRESS CORPS said, with one voice,
3. "My, that [name deleted] sure has been a fireball at seating judges and Supreme Court Justices!"
And I went out into the chicken house to find that bottle of whiskey I hid there.
I have been saying the autumn of 2016 that we are not operating under the most basic, broad terms of the Constitution.
A member of the Republican ruling committee just told you, in public, in the New York Times, that an extra-Constitutional group is in control. --more
2. Talking heads are still making excuses because Constitutional solutions are so unwieldy blah blah -
The man is in blatant, open violation of the Constitution *and* regular law. Every day.
His Attorney General is a known perjuror.
3. His son-in-law falsified his security clearance application.
Make all the excuses you want:
THE CONSTITUTION IS DONE. OVER. FINI.
We are living in a post-Constitutional, post-republic, post-democratic plutocracy.
This is not a drill.
I don't know if you have read the Lord of the Rings trilogy or mostly watched the movie. I first read it in the jungles of the Central Highlands mountains in South Vietnam. I once read the entire thing aloud to my girlfriend, before she consented to become my wife.
2. I didn't much like the movie. I made a better picture in my brain than they made in 1s and 0s, is all I'm saying. And I'd read it four or five times by then, so I had the pictures down.
If you remember, when they were cornered there in Helm's Deep,
3. And the Huorns came. They were like Ents who had gone native, become almost totally trees. And they didn't much like Orcs. And they came up in the fog, and all the Orcs were vanquished.
We're the Orcs this time. The forest is marching up on us,
Congress is in on it.
Congress - specifically Mitch McConnell - may actually be running the show.
The orange guy is McConnell's pet monster.
I know I've tweeted this essay pair a zillion times, but these 2016 essays still fit the facts today.
Real events occurred and were reportd
I have just a few minutes before I leave to go set up for our performance today. I'm going to address America and politics through the lens of John McCain, his death, funeral, and the public conversation around them.
2. You've got people like me who didn't know John except as his public persona, and who never liked him, but who stood up for him, and for respectful discourse, throughout this time.
3. You've got, of course, people who loved his public persona, and who *of course* stood up for him.
You've got people who, for their own reasons, simply kept their mouths shut, their opinions to themselves. I respect this choice.
And you've got people who attacked him.
I grew up in Kansas City, Missouri, at 6135 Wabash, a street which no longer exists. It has been turned into, in order, a dirt-poor ghetto, a toxic waste dump (I shit you not. They turned the woods I grew up playing in into a toxic waste dump) and a - what? Brownfield, I guess.
2. But I'm not going that direction tonight.
It was a nice, very modest neighborhood. White people, yes. It was a neighborhood built, cheaply and hastily, to house returning veterans. Ozzie and Harriet had a *much* nicer house, but otherwise... Pretty much.
3. I went to urban public schools, a grade school I could walk to and usually did, a high school I could have walked to but, at over a mile, could usually finagle a ride.
They provided us a pretty good education.
If you live anywhere around Kansas City and don't have plans for tomorrow evening, come see El Solo and the Responders with Jeffy on pedal steel 'bout 5:00 PM. VFW, Lexington, MO
No cover, open mic, free snacks, cash bar.
It'd be like a private party. Usually consists of "band family", 4 to 6 of us usually, 4 perform VFW family (Bill and Mrs. Bill) and if we're lucky maybe 2-3 other people.
We'd be *really grateful* to see you. So would Mr. and Mrs. Bill.
We start at 5:00, play to 8 or 9 (the more people, the longer we play), play old people's music. Old rock, old country, Beatles and Eagles and Rolling Stones, Merle Haggard, John Prine - Blues, Chuck Berry - we're not great, but we're a fun show.
Front room music.
Did you happen to listen to Joe Biden's wonderful eulogy to John McCain yesterday?
In the midst of it he mentioned how the Senate, and American politics, he and John had known began to die in 1996. --more in replies
3. People - talking heads, thumbsucking "thinkers", and highly educated fools, talk about how "our politics" and "our country" has "division".
This is not some incomprehensible, natural disaster.
The division was created on purpose, the hateful rhetoric designed, by one "leader".
Ladies. Guys. I'm going to do a Battle of the Sexes tweet. I'm going to try *really hard* to not piss anyone off *too much.*
My mother was a reader, and a peer and fan of James Thurber.
If you've heard of him it's probably because the very worst story he ever wrote got famous.
2. Walter Mitty.
Forget Walter. Everything else Thurber wrote was witty and incisive. He was also a cartoonist.
He was a terrible draw-er. He was a brilliant cartoonist. He had a whole series of Battle of the Sexes cartoons.
3. In each Battle of the Sexes cartoon was a space filled with groups of men and groups of women thowing things at one another. Light household appliances, lamps, toasters...
My mom was born in 1915. Thurber was, I think, a little older than not much.