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peggysue2

Profile Information

Name: Peg
Gender: Female
Hometown: New Jersey
Home country: USA
Current location: Tennessee
Member since: Sat Feb 6, 2016, 08:31 PM
Number of posts: 8,889

Journal Archives

Pro-Choice Advocate John Fetterman Jumps Another 12 Pts In Recent Poll

John Fetterman's strongest moment in the last PA Senate debate in Carlisle was his strong advocacy for reproductive rights, the Right to Choose, a woman's right to control her own body and reproductive destiny. In todays's swirling SCOTUS controversy over Roe vs Wade, those comments are ever more timely and important.

John Fetterman used the word 'sacred' and also suggested that a 'Right to Choose' position should serve as a litmus test for all judicial selections. There was a time when the idea of judicial litmus tests regarding pro-choice was considered over-the-top, hysterical. At least, that's what I recall the opposition shouting.

I suspect few would consider anything over-the-top after yesterday's first-draft disclosure of stripping away a 50-year precedent.

In any case, John Fetterman has again jumped ahead of the pack in a new F&M poll:

Mr. Fetterman, Pennsylvania’s lieutenant governor, leads U.S. Rep. Conor Lamb 53% to 14% in the new poll, which surveyed 357 registered Democrats from April 20 to May 1. State Rep. Malcolm Kenyatta registered in third place at 4%, with Jenkintown Councilwoman Alex Khalil trailing the pack at 1%.

This represents a 12-point bump for Mr. Fetterman since the last F&M poll, conducted in early April when he was at 41%. In that time frame, Mr. Lamb dropped 3 points and Mr. Kenyatta didn’t move the needle.


Conor Lamb has complained about the poll's small sampling number (357) which is reasonable considering he's running a distant second. With a mere two weeks in the primary race, I'm guessing John Fetterman is smiling (cautiously), not only by the spread but by his increased approval numbers (67% among registered Dems).

We're almost there!


https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-nation/2022/05/05/pa-us-senate-poll-john-fetterman-dr-oz-david-mccormick-conor-lamb-2022-election/stories/202205050070

Have We Discussed the Democratic Senate Debate in Carlisle, PA?

I recall an OP on the Republican debate but thought the lack of discussion on the Democratic side was . . . strange.

I watched the debate in its entirety. The debate was held on Monday night at Dickinson College in Carlisle. In addition to Fetterman, Lamb and Kenyatta, Jenkintown Borough Councilwoman Alex Khalil was on the debate stage.

At the end, my first reaction was that Malcolm Kenyatta is a very good debater. He's sharp, clear and didn't miss a beat. He doesn't stand a chance in hell in this race but clearly is a strong voice for the future.

Up front, I'd say Kenyatta won the debate.

John Fetterman (of whom I'm a fan) was on the defensive most the night. As the frontrunner, he's a big target (in more ways than one ). What became obvious was that the debate forum is not Fetterman's forte. He looked uncomfortable for most of the debate and that affected his performance. His responses need to be sharper, cleaner, less vague.

He was, for instance, on point about reproductive rights being sacred, a litmus test for any and all judges. The moderator reacted to that answer and asked if the other participants agreed. Everyone said yes and repeated the once boogie-man phrase 'litmus test.' In that moment, John Fetterman had control of the stage.

But then, not so much in answering to the 2013 jogger incident. Kenyatta hammered Fetterman on that issue and in a way did the man a favor (at least, I hope so). It underscores the need for Fetterman to put this issue to bed, defuse it, before the Republicans attempt to crucify him. And they will try just that.

Conor Lamb, not unsurprisingly, gave a polished, poised performance. His main argument is that he's the more electable candidate, safe, middle-of-the-road, appealing to swing voters although he's somewhat defensive being reminded of that. He, too, went after Fetterman but not with the vigor or delight of Kenyatta.

And then, there was Councilwoman Khalil who reminded me of my favorite aunt. Very amicable, passionate, a bit frantic in some of her answers but genuine in her democratic values. Also kind, a virtue too often overlooked. Alex Kahlil is someone I could easily be friends with.

I suspect few saw this debate. I managed to catch it on C-span and it didn't start until 9:30 pm.

I really, really want John Fetterman to improve his debate skills, let himself go and come across as the man so many voters have responded to, the man we see at his rallies.

He does that? He'll win in a landslide.






The Power of Propaganda

Americans have had a taste of propaganda’s strong lure, seen the devastating effects on our body politic and discourse. Many of us have experienced family members being drawn into the circles of disinformation where no manner of reasoning or logic can make a dent. Too frequently, anger and frustration are the only winners in these endless debates.

So, it shouldn’t be a surprise that a rift in Russian families has been reported over the recent war/special military operation in Ukraine. Think Fox News on steroids, a constant barrage of disinformation from . . . everywhere over the course of a lifetime.

The Daily Beast has an article up today on the subject (sorry it’s behind a paywall). I found it interesting because it sounds so familiar—these splits between family members, parents disavowing their kids for uncomfortable ideas or speaking out against Putin on social media. Here’s a two-paragraph sample:

Even the most loving and tight knit Russian families are having painful fights over the war in Ukraine. Anna Zekria, a 42-year-old photo curator, told The Daily Beast she has always had healthy discussions with her 74-year-old father about political issues in Russia in the past.

But this time around, things were drastically different. “My father has always respected my political views, I am not even sure what happened. It was a sudden change,” Zekriya told The Daily Beast on Thursday. “My father is trying to convince me and my brother that geopolitics are more complicated than we know, that ‘Putin had no choice but to invade Ukraine,’ that ‘Nazis run Ukraine.’”

There’s another story about a young biracial man, now living in France, whose Russian mother raised him as a single mother and ‘always had his back.’ This is an educated woman, a linguist. No matter. She idolizes Putin, was mad as hell when the son refused to vote for the man in the last election. They managed to patch over that dispute. But now, the son’s distaste for a senseless war has irrevocably broken the relationship.

“You are no longer my son,” the mother said.

The power of propaganda can destroy families and friendships. Americans have yet to find an antidote for our own tidal wave of Qanon fantasies, white nationalist fervor, Trumpism, religious intolerance, racial bigotry, etc. Bothsiderism, whataboutism are off-shoots in the propaganda wars, techniques used by our own media, presumably for ‘balance.’

If everyone does it then it’s no biggie, right?

Using the Russian example where reportedly 83% of the population support Putin during this unprovoked invasion,

https://www.usnews.com/news/world-report/articles/2022-03-31/putins-support-strong-in-russia-amid-ukraine-war-poll

it behooves Americans supporting democratic institutions to find/use effective anti-propaganda tools before the endless lies win on our own soil.

Yes, right here in the good ole USA.

A good portion of America fell for the propagandized debacles in the Mideast, blood and treasure spilled in all the wrong places. The tentacles of that propaganda machine, now fine-tuned, have spread throughout the American ether. Putin may be the master of propaganda, but those who would reshape America in their own image or that of their favorite autocrat are catching up.

The Ukrainian war has offered a stark example of how powerful the tools of propaganda truly are. Zelenskyy has certainly won the world-wide information war zeroing in on Putin’s misinformation, rallying his own citizens to the cause of independence and democratic rule. The man has inspired millions around the globe with his transparency, courage and resilience.

But Putin has also won a propaganda war with most Russian citizens by closing off criticism and dissent, jailing protestors and disappearing any and all dissenters/activists using the hard fist of fear, intimidation. Projection, deception, deflection, gross hyperbole and/or gas-lighting have been used to great effect. The most recent gaslighting I’ve read? Ukraine is now ‘Biden’s War.’

Is there any better example of which country you’d rather live in? Is there any better contrast between a striving (though struggling) free society and a dystopian-like nightmare of a country?

I know what my answers are.

Oh, and btw? We have elections coming up.



A Prayer

Couldn't help wanting to share this here. Poignant, blunt, heartbreaking. Written by someone familiar with war, the taste and smell of it, the terrible anger and loss.

prayer

Our Father, who art in heaven
of the full moon
and the hollow sun

shield from death my parents
whose house stands in the line of fire
and who won’t abandon it
like a tomb

shield my husband
on the other side of war
as if on the other side of a river
pointing his gun at a breast
he used to kiss

I carry on me this bulletproof vest
and cannot take it off
it clings to me like a skin

I carry inside me his child
and cannot force it out
for he owns my body through it

I carry within me a Motherland
and cannot puke it out
for it circulates like blood
through my heart

Our daily bread give to the hungry
and let them stop devouring one another

our light give to the deceived
and let them gain clarity

and forgive us our destroyed cities
even though we do not forgive for them our enemies

and lead us not into temptation
to go down with this rotting world
but deliver us from an evil
to get rid of the burden of a Motherland—
heavy and hardly useful

shield from me
my husband, my parents
my child and my Motherland

From “Apricots of Donbas,” by Lyuba Yakimchuk, translated by Oksana Maksymchuk, Max Rosochinsky and Svetlana Lavochkina (Lost Horse Press, 202

Let's pray this trend continues

https://twitter.com/IAPonomarenko/status/1496949071810027532?s=20&t=TVwgzHoKEvR2q_0MFVeg7w

Also read another tweet that some of the Russian soldiers are surrendering. They didn't come to kill their brothers. Presumably, they were collecting information.

Just tidbits at the moment. This was a retweet from Malcolm Nance.

Tell me this looks like a Peacekeeper

https://twitter.com/TheRealHoarse/status/1495871259669897216?s=20&t=iJTe2JUqHAxAkvP5PmhVlw

This thug is invading Ukraine NOW. Time for the press to call it out for what it is and callout Republican supporters including Fox News cheerleaders, Tucker Carlson.

Disgusting.

Malcolm Nance now reporting from Ukraine. This could be the largest land invasion since WWII, he says, and yet a fifth column within the US is excitedly celebrating, ready to undo post-WWII security agreements.

Insane. Seditious.

The World is a Very Noisy Place! LOL

Finally took the plunge and bought my first hearing aids. Eargo, to be specific. Cannot believe the difference and now wonder why I've been so hesitant. I've had several hearing tests over the years, so I knew there was a profound problem--all that straining to hear speech, TV, whatever. Also had a MRI taken several years back and knew I had considerable scar tissue behind each ear. I have moderate loss in my left ear and severe loss in my right. My family was constantly on my back to do something bc I was always having them repeat themselves and/or screwing up conversations.

But today, I went to CVS for a flu shot. I could hear my name being called. I could hear the technician without difficulty, in addition to the swishing of my coat and tapping of my shoelaces and heels. The background noise will start to level out from what I've read as my brain adjusts to all the sounds and pitches I wasn't formerly able to hear.

These are tiny, in the-ear-appliances with bluetooth capability. Setting the volume and programs is easy-peasy on my iPhone and the aids are rechargeable, no tiny batteries to mess with.

The shipment came yesterday, so this is Day 1 of full usage. So far? I am surprisingly impressed.

Anyone else have the Eargo experience? I'd love to read your feedback. I actually talked to someone at the company about 5 years ago. But I just wasn't ready then (stupid vanity, really). On the other hand, the product is far more sophisticated than it was then and I've gown accustomed to my bluetooth Apple ear buds. Think that helps in accepting the in-the-ear design.

Anyway, I have now rejoined the hearing Universe. Even though,

The World is a Very Noisy Place.

The Bonfires Are Coming

Anyone thinking the race to a new Dark Age is hyperbole should scan the Washington Post's article about a new cry in Virginia: Toss all objectionable books into the fire.

This isn't a new phenomenon. What's new is the sentiment has gained purchase in the MAGA-infused world where all critical thinking is a threat; where racial and gender discussions are forbidden; where myths about the Golden Age of the past are elevated; and noble, lost cause narratives continue unscarred, uncriticized and worshipped. Here's a taste, bitter as it is:

As the Fredericksburg Free-Lance Star reported Tuesday:

Two board members, Courtland representative Rabih Abuismail and Livingston representative Kirk Twigg, said they would like to see the removed books burned.
“I think we should throw those books in a fire,” Abuismail said, and Twigg said he wants to “see the books before we burn them so we can identify within our community that we are eradicating this bad stuff.”


If there isn't a long, shrieking howl over this, we are on our way to ruin. Burning books, starting with the suggestion that somehow these subjects are not worthy of teaching and/or crowd out the teaching of Christian values, cannot be normalized or ignored. We pretend this sentiment is fringe, irrelevant at our own peril.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/11/10/i-think-we-should-throw-those-books-fire-movement-builds-right-target-books/

Right approach, too

Call these suckers out for what they are: seditionists, traitors. The press won't do it; they'd rather wrap everything in their 'objective' gauze and/or slide into bothsiderism.

There are not two sides to this fight.

You either support the continuation of our democratic Republic or you don't. You either demand accountability from the insurrectionists (and their supporters including Trump and his apologists) on January 6th or you don't. You're either on the side of science and rationality or you're not.

The list goes on and on. The choice is clear, stark.

Trump and his acolytes have poisoned the minds of what remains of the GOP. That poison needs to be fully acknowledged, then dealt with accordingly.

As in, they need to lose everywhere.

Strike Pac

Haven't seen this ad up at DU. This is Rachel Bitecofer's first Strike Pac ad with some powerful imagery and a strong reminder of what we're fighting for in 2022, 2024 and beyond. She's followed this one up with a Virginia state ad with the same nationalized punch--Glenn Youngkin=McConnell's obstructionism=voting suppression and Republican anti-democratic turns.

Pull no punches. Make them own it. Every single race.


https://twitter.com/i/status/1400532177943773187
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