Six-Word Saturday: Hackney City Farm, Goldsmiths Row, London

For the past week, self has been exploring East London. Well, maybe ‘exploring’ isn’t the right word: she’s been mostly reading and writing and sending stuff out and trying to get home sooner so she can vote in the California primary — it may seem funny to cut a trip short just to vote in a primary, but she takes nothing for granted these days.

Here are the positions up for vote: California U.S. Senate, Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Controller, Treasurer, Attorney General, Insurance Commissioner, Member of State Board of Equalization, State Superintendent of Public Instruction, U.S. Representative in Congress, State Senator, State Assembly Member, as well as other local candidates. She is, of course, voting Democrat all the way down the ballot. And if there’s one thing she’s proud about, it’s about raising a son who’ll vote Democrat all the way down the ballot, too!

These past six years have been exhausting: she’s cut off ties with friends she’s known for decades, because all of a sudden they’re calling Hillary “ugly” and say women should not be wearing pantsuits. Think it’s ridiculous? So does self.

Anyhoo, while knocking about East London (which is as far from tourist-y as you can get in London), she stumbled onto a working farm. You can smell the manure from a long way off, it is a little disconcerting, but at least all self had to do was follow her nose.

What a place, though! It sells cheese, grains, veggies — the usual stuff sold by an organic farm. And the minders look exactly like the people in California. In fact, they may even look slightly more hippie-ish than organic farmers do back home. East London hippies — self never knew such a type existed!

Posting this for Travel with Intent’s Six-Word Saturday Challenge.

Conclusions (Thus Far) from Reading We Are Bellingcat

Self is about 3/4 of the way through.

It is becoming quite clear that the scale of Russian disinformation in the months leading up to November 2020 was designed with one aim in mind: to sink Hillary Clinton. And Comey’s coming up with the e-mail angle in July 2020 — could that have been any better timing? Comey was a dupe — whether a deliberate dupe or an accidental dupe, who can say. But a dupe, nevertheless.

Recently, during the hearings for Judge Jackson’s nomination to the SCOTUS, the matter of child pornography was brought up repeatedly by Josh Hawley, Lindsey Graham, and Ted Cruz.

There were very strong echoes to the Hillary is a pedo and Joe Biden is a pedo line.

Do the GOP have pedo on the brain, or what?

Now, after reading this far in We Are Bellingcat, I now know why the GOP line is always calling a political opponent a pedo. Because it is undisputedly a line. A line they have been given. A line they all parrot like obedient children. None of it was arrived at by independent thinking. That is why it is always the same: pedophilia and child pornography.

None of them truly believe that Hillary Clinton or Joe Biden are pedos, but it’s a mark of their allegiance to the party line, to say it out loud. A mark of their loyalty.

The next GOP Senator who starts the Biden is a pedo line, you’ll know that person is utterly compromised.

Stay tuned.

WSJ Readers Respond to “President Trump Responds on Pennsylvania”

LETTER 1:

Although I can appreciate the value of your newsletter printing letters from writers of various views, it seems extremely important to vet these letters for truth, fact, and veracity. Yet you publish a letter from former President Trump, who doesn’t accept truth and fact. He continues to destroy our institutions and norms to advantage himself.

The decision to publish his letter was a mistake. It is not “cancel culture” to refuse to print false allegations and lies. It is important to support cold, hard facts. Because Mr. Trump’s assertions of “rigged” elections and “corruption” are so damaging to the fabric of a democratic society, a response to these fabrications from these editors is necessary.

Wall Street Journal, Letters to the Editor, Weekend, Oct. 30-31, 2021

LETTER 2:

If Democrats rigged the 2020 election employing the nefarious tactics alleged by President Trump, why didn’t Democrats apply the same dishonest devices to win more of the 435 House and 35 Senate races? The hundreds of Republican incumbents and challengers who lost their races haven’t complained to the Federal Election Commission or file lawsuits. Had Democrats possessed the power to rig elections in 2020, they surely would have used it to secure sufficient seats to avoid the congressional deadlock that plagues the American people today.

Wall Street Journal, Letters to the Editor, Weekend, Oct. 30 – 31, 2021

Quote of the Day: The Economist, 3 July 2021

“Claiming to be winning while actually losing . . . Caught between their primary voters and loyalty to the constitution, most have concluded that, unless the Capitol is under siege, the best course of action is simply to stay silent.”

— Leaders, The Economist, 3 July 2021

2016 Redux

Homeland Elegies brings self back to that time of innocence, pre-Former Guy, when we thought all he was good for was palaver.

Father: He’s not going to win . . . You’re smart enough to know that. He doesn’t even want to win. He’s trying to send a message.

Ayad Akhtar: I thought you said he was trying to start a channel.

Father: Same thing.

AA: He’s running for an election he doesn’t want to win so he can start a channel to send a message?

Father: The system is broken . . . I’m saying he won’t win, so you should calm down.

— pp. 18 – 19, Homeland Elegies

And then he did win.

Self still remembers how, on the evening of Election Day, she took Caltrain from Palo Alto to the City, and the packed train car was full of anxious buzz buzz buzz. She finally asked the young woman next to her what was going on.

The young woman said: “Trump’s winning. I’m scared.” The woman held up her cell. Polls on the East Coast had just closed, and the numbers were shocking.

The next morning, when self turned on her cell, the first message was: Your representation has changed. Then, a long long list of newly elected candidates ending with: The President of the United States: DT!

That night, the smell of pot was stronger than usual from the apartment above. Self remembers there were people hanging out on the fire escape, and she could distinctly hear their conversation: “Can you believe he WON? What’s going to happen NOW?”

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

A Photo a Week Challenge: Celebration, COVID-Style

From Nancy Merrill, host of the Photo a Week Challenge:

Last year, when Covid-19 first struck the United States, my friend’s daughter got married. It wasn’t the wedding she had started planning when she got engaged in November, but it was a beautiful celebration of love and joy. I was one of twenty-five people who were able to attend the sweet backyard ceremony. It was fun to not only take photos but to help with the decorations and food and just overall doing what we could to make the bride and groom happy.

IN A NEW POST CREATED FOR THIS CHALLENGE, SHARE A PHOTO OR TWO (OR THREE…) OF HOW YOU HAVE CELEBRATED DURING THE PANDEMIC.

Along with the rest of America, self watched the inauguration of #46, Joseph R. Biden, on live TV.

The marchers (except for one) are wearing masks! Funny, she never stopped to think about that until she started looking at pictures for this week’s Photo a Week Challenge.

Also a first: that she watched the events unfold on Fox News!

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

Thoughts Thus Far on A PROMISED LAND

Self is on p. 88.

  • 44 is a very, very good writer. But dear blog readers knew that already.
  • The parts with Michelle are some of the best parts of A Promised Land. She is 44’s biggest ace in the hole.
  • Self loves that 44 is always questioning his motives. When the idea of running for President starts being broached, he is honest about his fears. But, in the end, he writes, “I had to know how this thing played out.” (p. 78)
  • After he announces his candidacy, he describes campaigning this way: “sleeping in a Hampton Inn or a Holiday Inn or an Americ Inn or a Super 8. I’d wake up after five or six hours . . . It was a life of not glamour but monotony, and the prospect of eighteen continuous months of it quickly wore down my spirit.”
  • But there’s also his singular dedication: “I was learning a lot and quickly. I spent hours dutifully poring over the fat briefing books prepared by my staff, inhaling the latest studies on the value of early childhood education, new developments in battery technology that would make clean energy more accessible, and China’s manipulation of its currency to boost its exports.” Contrast that with 45! Self heard that when Biden’s transition team was finally given access to the daily briefings, they were surprised at the extent to which the daily briefings seemed to have been tailored to 45’s inclinations, because they’d been whittled down to about two pages.
  • RE Bill and Hillary: He “admired” Bill, but was “more sympathetic” to Hillary because he saw in her what his “mother and grandmother had gone through . . . “

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

So Long, Won’t Be Missing You

_________________________________________________________________________________

His tweets and retweets, which came “at a favored rate of more than a hundred a day,” provided “talking points right-wing media outlets,” and were “absorbed as doctrine by millions of faithful constituents.” (The New Yorker, The Talk of the Town, 25 May 2020)

A sample of adjectives used by 45 in his tweets: “pathetic,” “dopey,” “a total nut job,” and “low-class slob.”

He declared “They will have to drag me out of the White House!”

Well, you’re gone, gone, goooooooone.

Stay safe, dear blog readers. Stay safe.

The Economist, 16 January 2021

Only one in six voters now supports the storming of the Capitol, but many of them still think the election was stolen, partly because, shamefully, Republicans have not dared to tell them the extent of Mr. Trump’s lies. Now is the time to start.

Mr. Trump will never forgive those whom, like Mitch McConnell, the Senate Leader, he judges to have failed him by acknowledging Mr. Biden’s election victory. Having begun to move against him, they should finish the job.

2020: The Sea Inside

No commentary, just pictures that moved self as she looks back on the year ending. Most of the pictures are ones self took, except for: the still from Tenet; the still from The Expanse; the still from Black Panther; the ballet dancers in front of a Confederate monument (which she thinks is from AP)

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