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Profile Information

Name: Paul McKibbins
Gender: Male
Hometown: New York City
Home country: USA
Current location: Catskill Mountains
Member since: Mon Jun 5, 2006, 05:16 PM
Number of posts: 20,883

About Me

Lifelong Democrat

Journal Archives

Sorry but this is not the time for Democrats to be generous towards Republicans

Maher is wrong on this as he so often is on other issues.

First, the Republicans haven't turned their backs on Trump, even if he's getting a small percentage drop in his support. At the CPAC conference last weekend, Trump was by far the straw-pole favorite to be the GOP nominee in 2024.

Second, There are still plenty of Republicans in positions of political power and influence who continue The Big Lie and constantly insult anyone to the left of Genghis Kahn. For example, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Loren Boebert, Matt Gaetz, Louis Gohmert, Sarah Palin, Paul Gosar, Josh Hawley and Rand Paul-- among many others-- have recently made many disparaging and nasty or insulting comments about Democrats and President Biden. Why in the world should we respect or compromise with them?! Get real, Bill.

Lastly, Republicans around the country at the state level have been furiously rewriting their voting laws, gerrymandering their voting districts, purging their voting lists and creating legislative ways to overrule the will of the voters. They know they will lose elections if there are fair, open and honest elections. Maher expects us to be magnanimous? Fuck them and fuck Bill.

Perhaps Maher has a good point about the way to engage with our enemies after they are defeated. But the political war in the U.S. isn't over yet. It's way too early to be accommodating to the traitorous Republicans who haven't demonstrated a drop of contrition. Maybe later but otherwise our fight continues.

We went to the movies last night!

We're in the Lower Catskills Northwest of NYC and the local movie theater is rather beautiful. It was built just after WWII and it was fashioned out of a quonset hut. It seats about 350 people with a beautiful digital projection system and a terrific sound system and wonderful seating. They make real popcorn with real butter and the owners make this one of the best movie theaters I've ever been to, (that includes my other favorite, NYC's Ziegfield).

We haven't been to the movies for a couple of years which has seemed like forever. In the past we would go to the movies 2 or 3 times a month. It's been a long drought, thanks to the pandemic. The Callicoon Theater, where we went, has put into place very good Covid protocols including roping off every other aisle, requiring masking everywhere (except at your socially-distanced seat) and providing hand sanitizers in many parts of the facility.

So, we went to see West Side Story with great excitement. Sadly, it was a huge disappointment. There's nothing in this film that improves on the original and there's an awful lot of stuff glommed onto this classic musical in vain attempts to make the story "relevant." I could go on and on-- as I did last night when we got home-- but I'd be wasting my breath. In short, it's no surprise that this $100 million dollar movie has crashed at the box office, earning back less than half its investment.

The cast, however, is excellent and their singing and dancing is superior, although much of the acting is stiff and/or stilted. The photography is exceptional and evocative and the music is glorious. Still, it's not enough to save this film which is overly long at more than 2 hours and 35 minutes.

It was an unexpected bummer.

Something's not right in this article

Sailors have known of rogue waves for a long time. They happen a lot more frequently than every thousand years.

In general, waves are caused by the friction of the wind on the surface of a body of water. The longer and stronger the wind blows in one direction, the larger the waves can become. Because of the hydro-physics involved, the depth of the water is directly related to the size of the wave.

But waves are not uniform in their period (frequency) or their amplitude (height). If waves are traveling at different speeds and heights, a random confluence of two or more waves can result in their combining forces thus creating the rogue wave. Interestingly, those waves will still maintain their "individuality" and the rogue wave will usually separate back into its constituent waves.

Having sailed in the North Atlantic Ocean and seen its forces, I can believe that these huge waves occur more than once every millennia. For example, the infamous 1991 Halloween Gale/Storm, also know as The Perfect Storm, saw giant waves and the proposition is that a monstrous rogue wave caused the capsize of the Andrea Gail. When added to the examples in the linked article, these behemoths occur more often.

I know what you mean

It's easy to become disenchanted and depressed about the direction of our country and society. My wife and I have discussed and researched moving abroad if we see things going in a terrible direction. So I've got plenty of pessimism informing my views.

But these negative events you wrote of happen to every president. Most of the things you cite are beyond the direct-- and maybe indirect-- influence of the White House.

The economy is too large and complex for one person to really control and I think we really want it that way.

Fuel costs are dictated by the oil companies and their markets. The president could use the strategic reserves to lower prices but that cannot be a continuous policy.

The financial markets are basically kind of stupid in their over-reactions to daily events. Consider that in the long-term, the markets have always gone up over time. An investor, whether large or small, only needs to be patient and mildly conservative in their choices of investments. For example, I've read that if Trump had invested the $400 million he got from his father in an indexed fund, without doing anything, today he would actually be worth several billion dollars.

President Biden has engaged with Putin and threatened him with the consequences of a Russian incursion into the Ukraine. Economic sanctions will probably be the primary response if Putin goes ahead. A military response would be folly and unsupported by a majority of Americans because we don't really have a stake in the Ukraine so why risk American lives and capital?

Regarding the January 6th investigations-- and I'm surprised at myself for writing this!-- have patience. Events are becoming clear and the facts are being assembled. The timing of the Congressional televised hearings will be powerful and revealing. Plus, the political bonus of showing how Republicans attacked our Constitution could be a big game changer for the mid-term elections.

Our so-call Democratic senators who behave against the Democratic goals are an enigma. All we can do is GOTV and try to get a few more Democratic senators so Manchin and Sinema become irrelevant. Aside from providing the president with a stronger Senate, it would be a glorious blow to these two narcissist's egos.

Optimism and positive actions are what we need to advance our nation away from the neo-fascists and Trumpists. The alternatives are too dark to dwell upon... for now.
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