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Gender: Female
Hometown: born is LA, grew up there and in New Canaan CT
Home country: USA
Current location: East Hardwick, Vermont
Member since: Wed Sep 29, 2004, 03:28 PM
Number of posts: 114,904

Journal Archives

John Cassidy, The New Yorker: Can Donald Trump Rebound?

John Cassidy is my go to writer on the presidential race. Not only does he write well, but he's been spot on for the last year.

Donald Trump’s campaign is in reset mode. On Friday, Trump reversed himself and endorsed the reëlection efforts of fellow Republicans Paul Ryan, Kelly Ayotte, and John McCain. He admitted that he hadn’t seen a video of a U.S. plane unloading four hundred million dollars in Iran. And he also wished good luck to the U.S. Olympics team in Brazil. This “New Trump” even lasted into the weekend. Appearing at a rally in New Hampshire on Saturday night, he referred extensively to his written notes and restricted his barbs to the media and Hillary Clinton, whom he described as “a dangerous liar.” He didn’t bait any fellow Republicans, query the security guarantees that underpin NATO, or disparage the families of fallen U.S. servicemen.

Something had to change. Opining about Trump in the Wall Street Journal on Thursday, Karl Rove, the Republican strategist, issued a warning: “If he has more weeks like the dreadful past two, the gap between him and Mrs. Clinton is likely to widen and never close again.” On Monday, when the first polls taken during the Democratic Convention were published, Clinton had an advantage of 3.9 percentage points in the Real Clear Politics polling average. On Sunday morning, after a week in which Trump did a good impression of a man out to sabotage his own campaign, another slew of polls showed that Clinton had extended her lead to seven per cent.

There was particularly bad news for Trump from the battleground states. According to the latest surveys, he’s trailing Clinton by six points in Florida, nine points in Michigan, eleven points in Pennsylvania, and fifteen points in New Hampshire. The polls are also running strongly against him in Virginia and Colorado, two swing states that have been trending toward the Democrats, and there was even a survey a few days ago that showed Clinton ahead in Georgia, which has voted Republican in seven out of the last eight Presidential elections.


Theoretically, at least, Trump still has time to reboot, embrace self-discipline, and prepare for the television debates, all the while hoping that another Clinton scandal or a ghastly news event helps him out. But he’ll have to confront a potential mutiny among his fellow Republicans, a gaping disadvantage in field organization, and the widespread belief that he isn’t qualified to be President.


In sum, Trump faces a credibility crisis, which his antics over the past couple of weeks have heightened. On Saturday, Peggy Noonan, a former speechwriter for Ronald Reagan, wrote in the Wall Street Journal, “When you act as if you’re insane, people are liable to think you’re insane. That’s what happened this week. People started to become convinced he was nuts, a total flake.” To dispel this impression, it will take more than a couple of days of Trump holding his tongue.


The backstroke.

Amazing to watch. How they manage to stay in almost a perfectly straight line boggles my mind

My mother was responsible for the declassification of Nazi Propaganda at the OWI

She never talked about it- at least not to me. She was a distant kind of mother, but she was quite accomplished. She was born in 1919 and married at the age of 29. From her obit:

At the age of 6, she moved with her family to Europe, living in France and Italy, learning several languages, and acquiring a lifelong love and mastery of French cooking. At 16, she returned to the states to attend college.

As an avid reader with an uncommonly keen memory, she cultivated her strong interest in history, literature and politics her entire life. With the onset of World War II, her language skills led to a job at the French desk of the United States Office of War Information (OWI) in New York City, where she carried out simultaneous translation of radio programming for broadcast into France and worked closely with French expatriate writers on information and propaganda campaigns, also holding responsibility for the declassification of Nazi propaganda. After the war, she continued on at Voice of America, which had been established by OWI in 1942.

She became active in the League of Women Voters and the local and state organizations of the Democratic Party, serving as a delegate to the Democratic National Convention in 1976. Subsequently, she became involved with the New York (blanked that out)serving on the board of directors for many years. She traveled extensively, with particular fondness for London and Paris, where she was a member of the Société Saint-Simon.

I may be in a small minority here, but I'm sorry as hell about Wikileaks.

It's Julian Assange's private fiefdom. It allows for no input, no review. It's the opposite of wiki anything:




noun: wiki; plural noun: wikis

a website that allows collaborative editing of its content and structure by its users.

I was always wary of Assange because he came off as authoritarian to me, but I appreciated WikiLeaks' early work.


Now Assange has decided to intervene in the U.S. Presidential election to benefit Trump. He may have said, today, that they're both equally awful, but he's lying. He's laying off Trump. He won't go after him on taxes or his foundation.


Along with others, Assange created WikiLeaks.

Now, singlehandedly, he's destroyed it. And he's been doing that for years, but this shit? It's a nail in the coffin.

Bill McKibben in the NYT: Embarrassing Photos of Me, Thanks to My Right-Wing Stalkers


In one series, my groceries are being packed into plastic bags, as I’d forgotten to bring cloth ones. In other shots, I am getting in and out of … cars. There are video snippets of me giving talks, or standing on the street. Sometimes I see the cameraman, sometimes I don’t. The images are often posted to Twitter, reminders that I’m being watched.

In April, Politico and The Hill reported that America Rising Squared, an arm of the Republican opposition research group America Rising, had decided to go after me and Tom Steyer, another prominent environmentalist, with a campaign on a scale previously reserved for presidential candidates. Using what The Hill called “an unprecedented amount of effort and money,” the group, its executive director said, was seeking to demonstrate our “epic hypocrisy and extreme positions.”


This effort has resulted in all kinds of odd things appearing on right-wing corners of the web: out-of-context quotations from old books and articles apparently put on display to prove I’m a zealot, and photos from God knows who intended to make me out as a hypocrite (the plastic bags, for instance, and my travel by car, which, you know, burns gas). Mostly, they’ve just published those creepy videos, to remind me that I’m under surveillance.

I understand that this isn’t horrible in the way that police brutality is horrible, or having your home swept away by a flood is horrible. I know that in other parts of the world, environmentalists have worse things than cameras pointed at them. From Honduras to the Philippines, in the last two years, activists have been assassinated after getting in the way of megaprojects.


Merely having someone with a camera follow you somehow makes you feel as if you’re doing something wrong. My house is covered in solar panels, and I plug my car into a socket those panels power. But environmentalists also live in the world we’re trying to change: We take airplanes and rent buses for rallies; we make a living, shop for groceries. None of this should demand an apology. Changing the system, not perfecting our own lives, is the point. “Hypocrisy” is the price of admission in this battle.



Repub Political Strategist NY Daily News Op-Ed: Beat him like a drum

This is a long piece. You won't regret reading the whole thing. He's no Hillary fan, but he completely dismantles Trump, his voters, the Republican Party and its leaders with harsh but surgical precision:

Beat him like a drum: Donald Trump must not just lose in November; to correct the institutions he’s broken, he must suffer a humiliating defeat

It's been a little over a year now. It's been a year of spectacle and showmanship, fury and farce, demagoguery and disaster. A year in which Donald Trump's con game tricked about 35% of Republicans into voting for him, before Vichy Republican leaders meekly bowed to his will.

The single worst major party nominee in modern history — a man who has no political core, lies practically every time he speaks and is patently unstable — reached this point because every leader and institution in my party, the Republican Party, has failed again and again to grapple with the grim realities of Trump's impact on the election, the conservative movement and the character of our nation.

And so, now, here we are: As revealed by poll after poll, Americans feel worn down by the dirty, ugly character of the dirty, ugly candidate at the top of the GOP ticket.

It's not just that, in the wake of the Democratic Convention, Hillary Clinton has surged ahead in national polls by seven, nine, 15 points.



Syrian refugee athlete who saved 20 lives pushing boat, wins swimming heat at Rio

Syrian teenager wins first Rio 2016 heat of women’s 100m butterfly

18-year-old dragged dinghy carrying refugees to safety in Mediterranean

There will be plenty of inspiring swims in the Rio pool this week but few to match the personal odyssey completed by Yusra Mardini on the opening day of competition. Last year the Syrian teenager was battling in the sea for survival with fellow asylum seekers while trying to reach the Greek island of Lesbos. To go from there to winning the opening heat of the 100m butterfly at the Olympic Games is the ultimate illustration of drawing strength from adversity.

For those minded to complain about minor irritations in Rio such as humidity in the aquatics centre or a few nibbling insects, the 18-year-old’s story should serve as a timely reminder of life’s more pressing issues. Last summer Mardini and her sister Sarah fled their home in Damascus for Beirut, Istanbul and finally Izmir in Turkey, where they managed to squeeze on to a dinghy crossing the Mediterranean. Thirty minutes into their journey the motor stopped and the overcrowded boat, carrying 20 people, threatened to capsize.

There was no option but for Yusra, Sarah and another woman to enter the water and push and drag the dinghy towards the shore. They were the only ones on board who could swim. “I thought it would be a real shame if I drowned in the sea, because I am a swimmer,” Mardini said last week. The proximity of the open ocean off Rio might have stirred some uncomfortable flashbacks.



Is there a more inappropriate place for trump to reveal details of his economic plan than DETROIT?

Republican president candidate Donald Trump will make a major economic address at the Detroit Economic Club on Monday, the club announced Wednesday.

The New York businessman and reality TV star will visit the Motor City for a noon appearance at the Detroit Marriott Renaissance, the club said.

“We have a long tradition of hosting presidential candidates, and we’re delighted to do so on Monday,” CEO Beth Chappell said in a phone interview with The Detroit News.

The address to the Economic Club will be Trump’s first campaign stop at the club and his first appearance in Michigan since a two-day swing right before his victory in the March 8 Republican primary. Trump participated in the March 3 debate at the Fox Theatre and held rallies in Warren and Cadillac.



Donald Trump Is Proposing The Biggest Tax Cuts Since Ronald Reagan's Presidency


WSJ: The Coach of Nigeria’s Basketball Team Is From...Vermont

Will Voigt grew up in Vermont, played college soccer in California and moved to Idaho earlier this summer. But he hasn’t been home much since then, and he won’t be until after the Olympics. He’s been too busy working: Will Voigt is the coach of the Nigerian men’s national basketball team.

This is more than the most unexpected job of Voigt’s career. It may be the most unusual marriage of any coach and any country in the entire Olympic Games.


It’s a wild story that continues in Rio after multiple stops in basketball hinterlands on several continents. And it began in a town that was rural even for Vermont. Voigt grew up on what used to be a dairy farm in Cabot, where he was one of 18 kids in the graduating class of his tiny high school, which was one of the smallest in the state. “There were more cows than people,” said his former coach Steve Pratt.


Still, people in Cabot sensed that Voigt would do something interesting with his life in part because of who his parents are. His father, Fran Voigt, founded the New England Culinary Institute. His mother, Ellen Bryant Voigt, was Vermont’s poet laureate and won a MacArthur genius fellowship last year for her poetry. “The gene pool,” said his father, “would not have anticipated this.”



Cabot is a classic hill town in Northeastern VT. It's claim to fame is Cabot cheese and butter and other dairy products.

Trump reveals his economic plan: Slash taxes, remove regulations to make the U.S.

the greatest producer of gas, oil and coal- per that brilliant economic mind, Stephen Moore of the Heritage Foundation.

All this and more great stuff to be officially introduced in a Trump ramble (or scripted speech) in Detroit, of all places, on Monday.

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