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Member since: 2001
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6200 in a 19,000-seat venue is blood in the water. They gambled and lost, big.

Watch for an increasingly frantic exodus by any GOPpie who isn't irrevocably chained in the bilge of this sinking ship.

That is all.


Thoughts on Celebrating Juneteenth

First thought: I think there are reasons for Americans who are not black to celebrate Juneteenth. It marks a major occasion when lying to black people about their status to keep them in bondage was no longer possible.

I think it's important for white me to acknowledge, honor, and celebrate when a particular door to shitty racist behavior closed for white people.

I think it's important for white me to acknowledge, honor and celebrate when a major racial injustice perpetrated by white people was brought to an end.

Second thought: Black people have the right and the option to define Juneteenth as a holiday and white me wants to respect and honor and celebrate that definition.

But I do worry that if Juneteenth becomes "a black holiday" it will forever get pigeonholed and marginalized and its real significance might be lost. White me thinks it would be best as an American holiday. Like Independence Day. Very like that.

Third thought: Maybe the way white me can most respectfully celebrate this holiday is by LISTENING to the voices and thoughts of black Americans on their experiences.

So my celebration today begins by looking for the first-person stories of black Americans, historical and contemporary, on how racism is experienced, and how we can change it.


Stop blaming the apples.

Sure, they're rotten. Not just one or two, but barrels of them. Occasionally you get some good ones, but yeah, the number of rotten ones just keeps getting bigger, fewer in each barrel are salvageable...

But it's not the apples' fault that they're rotten.

The orchard is diseased.

A healthy orchard has many different kinds of fruit, for many purposes. Early harvest, later harvest. Fruit that's best for eating, fruit that's best for cooking. Fruit to use right away, fruit that keeps well.

And you don't grow them all together, because different kinds are vulnerable to different stresses, diseases, pests, etc., and if you grow too many of the same type close together, one bout of blight can affect all the fruit.

Of course, it's cheapest to monocrop. Pick one kind. Optimize conditions for it. invest in the machines to tend and harvest just THAT kind.

At least, until the blight sets in.

And then you've got an orchard of one kind of fruit that's good for one kind of thing, but it's being shoved into every niche, whether it's good for that or not. And when the disease sets in, you've got nothing going into the barrels but rotten fruit.

If you want to fix it, stop thinking you can do it on the cheap with a monocrop and a one-culture-fits-all growing environment and automated equipment.

Survey the ground, test the soil. Note the sun exposure, the prevailing winds. What kinds of fruit will do well at this end? You definitely need some cooking fruit, where will it do best? What do you need to grow that special kind that's going to be in demand later?

Tend it carefully and pay attention to it. Don't think you can cheapass it with quick-grow fertilizers. Amend the soil properly and pay attention to its health or it won't grow you healthy fruit.

Check the trees regularly for signs of pest infestation and disease, and don't hesitate to remove a bad tree if it won't respond to treatment.

Get the BEST rootstock. Quality rootstock will let you graft healthy and resilient bearing scions.

At this point, we may need to plow it all up and re-plant.


The tide has turned.

I use this expression deliberately.

My stepfather retired on the Gulf Coast. When I'd visit him, he'd suggest I take a walk on the beach... "before the tide turns."

See, when the tide turned, the beach would get littered with garbage, and a series of tarry, debris-defined lines... the stuff left there by the old tide, coming in and leaving the garbage.

Now the tide has turned. Float with it, or swim out to sea, or face the risk of being left on the beach like a desiccating jellyfish corpse.

Racism is not over.

Racists are forever.

But the system is changing.

And the tide has now, finally, turned.


What's Really Chapping [Redacted]'s Ass Right Now...

...is how clearly the pandemic and the protests in the street demonstrate his own complete and utter irrelevance.

Not one thing he has been able to do has changed either situation in any real magnitude.

Meaningful decisions have all devolved from the White House to hundreds of state and local Departments of Health, Governors' mansions, law enforcement entities, community protest groups, media centers, etc.

He had chances-- dozens of them, even hundreds of them-- to affect outcomes dramatically, to make a real, positive difference, in both situations. But they would have required him to, in his own view, "look weak." They would have required him to delegate and cede power to competent others. They would have required him to become a leader, leading by consent and with participation of the governed, rather than a dictator giving orders.

So he couldn't do it. He couldn't do any of it.

The most he could do, without directly scuppering his own mental image of himself as The War Pressydink or whatever it is, was to mess up other peoples' efforts.

And now there are too many people making too many various efforts in too many other places for him to control at all.

All the effectiveness and impact he, as the designated central authority, COULD have contributed to the dire situations, is so much tear gas dispersing on the wind.

He's officially irrelevant. The sideshow clown he's always been, exposed.

His foam-flecked horror-tweets barely rate a mention anymore, and that only pro-forma from the sources detailed to maintain a watching brief.

Watch for him to keep trying increasingly dangerous and deranged gambits to make himself relevant again.


Dear Joe Biden

First, thank you. Thank you for a life of service to America's Constitution, and the people of America. Thank you for your humble leadership, your gentle exercise of power, and the unflinching moral clarity you have learned through trial and error, sacrifice and hope- both personal and public.

Second, be assured of the support and strength flowing to you from all across America, appreciation for the hope you represent and the promise you have given us. I am grateful. I know I'm not the only one.

Now, a request. I know you're getting advice and gathering information from some of the most experienced political, social, and media strategists in America- but these are extraordinary times. Not even the strategists can claim experience with the concatenation of challenges facing our nation right now. You, however, have one incredibly rare and incredibly valuable quality which, if you put it to use, will light the path to rebuilding our nation as a just and equitable home for democracy: You have always shown yourself keen to listen to ordinary people outside the bubble of political power and media influence. Put this to work now.

And I'm writing this, so here's mine: Begin forming your government, NOW. Begin building strategies. Assemble plans. Connect with allies. Identify sources of expertise and help. And above all, gather data. Track what is going on in all of the places where the forces of greed and autocracy are attempting to shatter our commons and destroy our ability to heal democracy.

In other words, start day one with an action plan ready to roll out, and contingencies for all the obstruction you will face (and it will be monumental, undoubtedly.)

Don't neglect to hold a watching brief for the ploys focused on destroying your candidacy and stealing the election, but also, don't prioritize putting resources and energy into too much of the traditional campaign activities. Respect the electoral process, sure. Connect with voters, of course. Let the nation see you value the exercise of our votes, definitely.

But put as much of the resources and energy as you can into building a government that we will have confidence in from day one. You know as well or better than anyone the amount of energy that gets diverted into media circuses around the selection of key appointments and the structure of Administrative power, in those early days. That way lies loss of valuable momentum.

Well-planned choices now will not only sidetrack that unproductive folly later, it will build our confidence. And it will limit the amount of scrumming for influence later. We don't need horse races. We don't need reality teevee. We don't need drama, suspense, and soapsuds.

You can do this.

And we got your back.


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