This is not a time to be distracted, to turn away from politics, to eschew activism. In fact, if you are an American Citizen, you have to look back at your life and recognize that you screwed up, in two ways. First, whatever time you spent agitating and activating and acting out, turns out, was not enough. You needed to spend something like 10% more time on that. Second, whatever decisions you made as to exactly what sort of activism you would do on a given day were likely flawed. Instead of yammering about Bernie after the primary you should have been going after Trump. At the beginning of the primary process, you should have gone with the insurgent, Bernie, instead of the tried and true, Hillary. Whatever. I'm not here to tell you what you did wrong exactly, because I'll be damned if I know. But I know, and you know, that you did something wrong.
How do I know that? Because of this:
Donald Trump Inauguration
Schedule of Inaugural Events (Eastern Time)
January 20th, 2017
8:30 a.m. ET: Trumps attend service at St. John's Church
9:40 a.m. ET: President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama welcome Trumps to White House
9:45 a.m. ET: Obamas host a coffee and tea reception for the Trumps.
10:30 a.m. ET: Trumps, Obamas leave White House for U.S. Capitol
11:30 a.m. ET: Swearing-in ceremony
12:30 p.m. ET: The Obamas depart by helicopter
12:54 p.m. ET: President's Room signing ceremony
1:08 p.m. ET: Luncheon
2:35 p.m. ET: Review of the troops
3 p.m. ET: Inaugural Parade
7 p.m. ET and thereafter for four years: Inaugural Bawl
See? If this election had been a landslide, then our collective yammering, protesting, messaging, teaching, communication, etc. would be part of an insurgency, a hopeful revolution, a determined evolution, or something. But what actually happened is this: We were making progress, we were turning many things around, changing things for the better, then suddenly along came this big log tied to a rope suspended from on high and it plowed right through us. An enormous, ugly, political pendulum that we thought was going in one direction had turned, and plowed through us like a bowling ball through nine pins.
But only just barely.
A while back I had been conversing for weeks with a bunch of activists, serious activists, people with their hands on the activism levers of power, serious serious people. They had been so thrown off by the outcome of the Democratic Primary that they spent huge amounts of effort making sure that a totally insignificant document, the DNC Platform, included their pet projects, and thereafter following through on that, that they simply put nearly zero effort into working against Trump. Had these remarkable and important individuals not walked away from the process at he crucial moment, they would have been the deciding factor in this election and Trump would not have been elected president. That's my story, and it is one of dozens around the country, many of you will identify them in your own lives if you look. People were distracted, misled, or simply wrong, about this or that aspect of the election. Collectively, all of this added up to a slim victory. But it matters not how slim that victory was, because the Republican Party is 100% in charge in the White House, in both houses of Congress, and in many state chambers and state houses around the country.
Climate scientists model future climate change using a number of different model configurations, but the initial input to those models are based on various scenarios of how quickly we change our energy policies and related behaviors. With a Trump presidency and a GOP Congress, that process just got easier, because the two or three more optimistic staring assumptions can be ignored for several years. Think of the computing time that will save!
That was a very long way of saying that you can not distract yourself from the task of saving civilization over the next few years.
How to survive a Trump presidency starting now
But, during that time, you can spend a bit of time doing something that will make you feel better, maybe energized, maybe even self educated in an area that gives perspective or some other help to your psyche.
I've been asking around, to see what people are doing, and here, I'll put some of the book suggestions and other ideas people have made. I expect more suggestions to come in soon, and I'll add them to the lists.
Watch the West Wing
One idea, often mentioned, is to watch The West Wing, as an example of a better time and place. If you do that (and I suspect for many this would be a re-watch) I suggest you consider listening to The West Wing Weekly Podcast, co-hosed by Joshua Malina ahd Hrishikesh Hirway. Josh is Will Bailey from the West Wing (he currently stars in Scandal, another excellently distracting White House related show!). The podcast tracks the West Wing episode by episode, with occasional variations in that pattern. One of the best things about it are the interviews with various individuals involved with the show. Also, over time, Malina and Hirway develop a working methodology of the West Wing, including terminology, morphological and categorial functions, etc. This gives the weekly review and discussion an interesting and evolving texture. Since they are currently well into Season Two, you can start now and listen to the podcasts on your own schedule. If you catch up to them, you'll have to start waiting for Wednesdays, when the podcast is released.
Read interesting history
One thing I've decided to do is to read some interesting history. It turns out that a lot of other people are doing something similar. Here is a list of what people have suggested so far:
Read interesting fiction
Watch or listen to something interesting
Read current non fiction about how messed up everything is
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I also recommend reading science fiction and fantasy.
That is a good way to take your mind off your troubles.
But your worst problem here is being outed as a dishonest little shit. And the solution is to admit your mistakes. So - come on.
You will feel much better once it's done.
Science fiction and fantasy is a good route to take at this point.
The blindness was strangely similar in the UK before the 'surprise' Brexit 'win'.
Everybody had their heads up their backsides about just how dangerous right wing populism arm in arm with the gutter press can really be.
Not learning from history etc.
Wonderful stuff but I'm a Laphroaig man myself.
Or if you want to read/listen to something completely backwards, you can pick up a paper or audiofile copy of "A Patriots History of the United States of America: From Columbus's Great Discovery to the Age of Entitlement" These dopes have to work in a dig against Obama whenever comparing a former president to him. The authors tore apart JFK, but reasoned that Nixon just made one mistake. there's more so I won't spoil it for you.
TMC will be airing "A Face in the Crowd" later today - that's a good diversion.
RickA: I also recommend reading science fiction and fantasy.
We do, RickA, we do: We read science fiction and fantasy every time we see one of your screeds aimed at undermining the science & evidence of AGW.
Given the subject of activism, a question...
If Trumps screws the US (and the rest of the globe) as mightily as all indications would appear to suggest, might not the US body politic at some point consider addressing issues like unrepresentative results arising from optional voting, and from the broken electoral college system? To that one could probably add election funding, and media interference - amongst further things...
It could well be suggested that many of the States' sacred cows are nothing more than bloated carcasses putrifying in the fields of the nation's democracy, and if a Trump train wreck can't shift the country to update its antiquated electoral system, nothing will. And in that case Trump may well represent a precedent for the future, rather than the nadir against which a brighter future might be measured.
Brainstorms, that was going to be my next post...
Bernard, I'm quite surprised I was first with it. There must be a long line...
The problem is, if he & his conservative Congress, backed by a conservative SCOTUS, cement their power, they have zero motivation to correct any of the corruption-proliferating defects in our current system. Those were factors that helped them gain power. They'll preserve them (and make them worse) in order to hold onto power.
The only question is: Has America passed (or are about to pass) the tipping point -- beyond which "the good people" can no longer regain political power?
"Science fiction and fantasy is a good route to take at this point"
Trump is certainly deep in fantasyland. Not to mention his dudebros like dick here.
Perhaps now would be a good time to revisit James Ellroy's Underworld USA trilogy.
The changes you are proposing would require amending the constitution itself.
It can be done - but it is a pretty tall order.
First Congress has to propose the amendment with a two-thirds majority vote in both the House of Representatives and the Senate.
Then the proposed amendment has to be ratified by 3/4 of the states (38 of 50).
That is why it is a pretty tall order.
Changing the election system, election funding, campaign advertising and so forth would all require amendments to the constitution.
Ditto for most gun control (like banning the sale of hand guns, etc.).
Very very difficult.
Did you know that the ERA (equal rights amendment) for women still hasn't been ratified by the 38th state?
That is how difficult it is to amend the constitution.
"The changes you are proposing would require amending the constitution itself."
Well, for a start, no. But you have these things called "Amendments".Oh, and revolutions. You may have read about one before.
Both of those will change the constitution. If it did need changing.
For changing the election system, you and your ilk were certain it was never going to work and it was worthless to try.
You were wrong:
Hell, Trump RAN on the idea of how corrupting money in politics was. You voted against Hilary because of her money ties were corrupting.
But you need to show where what Bernard says is unconstitutional (and you only play a patent attorney, this is well outside the role you pretend), and point to where the constitution forbids it. That document is a limit on what the federal government can do, not a limit to the people or states.
2nd Amendment cite:
Campaign financing cite:
Election system cite:
12th Amendment to the Constitution
What does the 2nd have to do with Bernard???
Campaign financing was a decision about whether corporations have free speech rights via donations. That was brought in via a ruling and can be ruled out again.
Your 12th shows that the state rules to place requirements on electors is unconstitutional.
a) you have claimed that this is not so before, so why the change now?
b) the "faithless electors" are still being investigated for breech of contract, showing either that it's a perogrative of the states to ignore that, in which case it isn't against Bernard's proposition either, or you can just go ignore the constitution showing again Bernard's idea is fine
All you've done is cite the constitution but left out any way of what the fuck you mean by citing it. that the 12th is so easily shown to be toothless already (and ignored when you like the conclusion) indicates that this really isn't what you're complaining about, its the change itself, not its constitutionality.
And are there other amendments out there that untie your claims?
There was an amendment to prohibit the sale of alcohol.
If I point to that and claim you can't have a beer, is your drinking unconstitutional?
No, because there's another one to undo it.
" optional voting"
So which bit forbids non optional voting? Firearms isn't it.
"the broken electoral college system"
" To that one could probably add election funding"
No constitution makes it required to be funded via donations from corporations who are not citizens of the United States of America.
"and media interference"
You didn't make shit about the first here, but maybe that's because there are already massive amounts of speech not covered by the 1st, lying being one of them.
#2 you dishonest little shit.
Laphroaig for me too BBD.
Yes, we didn't pay attention to what was hapening in far too much of the UK in the run up to Brexit, then the 'left' in the USA didn't heed the lesson. Not that the left in the UK has learnt it yet.
It's a reflex on the part of RickA. Everything for conservatives involves the 2nd Amendment some how, some way. Even when it doesn't.
Both of those cases had scuppered themselves. Both thought that the only way they could get in power, and this MUST be attained, was to be the same as their opposition. Forgetting that you don't vote labour to be conservative, you vote conservative for that.
But the upshot was that there was this closed insistence that the corporate way was the only way, because they were all fighting for the exact same ground there.
And lost that the people voting for them weren't happy with that.
So a lot of protest voting. And several of them wishing they hadn't protested when it turned out a distant second became a close first.
I have always found it slightly oxymoronic when told that the 2nd Amendment can't be changed
anyway wow, what a speech (I do confess to laughing - although realise not really appropriate)
it reminded me of
"ein reich ein volk ein führer"
When you face all the loaded firearms pointed at you when you try, you will see that it cannot be changed.
Will Trump be America's führer, presiding over a neo-Nazi Reichstag?
Or will Trump be America's commisar, presiding over Putin's annexed U.S.S.R. (United States Soviet Republic)?
well, hard to differentiate, fascism is fascism after all
and interestingly a common misconception regarding fascism is that it is "orderly" and "efficient"
when the truth is, it is fundamentally chaotic - with riven internal politics
But if those guns say "Drop your weapon" then the second amendment has been changed.
Ask Muslims. Not easy getting a firearm if you look muslim. Insane and white? No problem. On a terrorist watchlist and not muslim looking? Fine. Looking Muslim? Not fine.
"All those guns aimed at you" is why the 2nd is a pile of crap. Get more guns and force others to give them up, job done.
According to the right wing, Nazis are communists,so they're both the same and equally fine with trumpers.
Though if you happen to be BLACK and not in bed with Russia, they're both the same thing AND BAD.
Putin wrote to Pumpkin,
Said "Do your very worst."
Pumpkin started an outfit
That he called America First,
In Washington, Washington.
In his speech, Trump struck a fiery, protectionist tone.
"From this moment on, it's going to be America First," he said. "We will follow two simple rules: Buy American and hire American."
It was a moment rich in irony.
Many of those supporters were sporting Trump's trademark red "Make America Great Again" baseball caps that were made in China, Vietnam and Bangladesh.
Some were horrified when they discovered their Trump hats were foreign made.
And so it begins...
"For too long, we’ve been held back by burdensome regulations on our energy industry. President Trump is committed to eliminating harmful and unnecessary policies such as the Climate Action Plan and the Waters of the U.S. rule."
"Some were horrified when they discovered their Trump hats were foreign made"
I'm always amused by the people who foam at the mouth screaming at people who "defile" the flag - then go to these rallies wearing one or more articles of clothing made in a flag design.
I would, first, recommend two books by Robert Draper:
* Do Not Ask What Good We Do (2012);
* When the Tea Party Came to Town (2013)
Both give us deep looks inside the operation of Congress.
* Time to Start Thinking by Edward Luce (2012)
* Take it Back by James Carville & Paul Begala (2006)
* Patriot Acts by Catherine Crier (2011)
* Conservatives without Conscience by John Dean (2006)
* Listen, Liberal by Thomas Frank (2016)
* American Amnesia by Jacob S. Hacker & Paul Pierson (2016)
* Piety and Politics by The Rev. Barry W. Lynn (2006)
* Dark Money by Jane Mayer (2016)
* War Made Easy by Norman Solomon (2005)
I have not yet read American Amnesia or When the Tea Party Came to Town. All the others listed are reviewed on my Web site. If you're interested, start at:
You can also write around Trump depression and perhaps help out a few others. http://adviceforwhiteguys.com/
And for the non guys?
Or the non white?
BBD, on government interference with renewables blocking their use, see this recent action:
Yes, I saw that when it came out a couple of days back. Piss poor. Now the Trump is enthroned, vested interest is crawling out of the woodwork. Doubtless there will be a good deal more of the same to come.
They call it "trials and tribulations". It's been predicted to have an unpleasant ending...
Day 2: "Alternative Facts"
I would like to add one book to your list.
Der Untertan by Heinrich Mann (The loyal subject)
I went and looked at the Wyoming law.
It does allow for Wyoming to purchase electricity from out of state, but only produced from a list of acceptable types (which include all fossil fuels, hydro, nuclear and net metering).
I do see that utilities which produce electricity from solar and wind are not listed as acceptable (either for in-state or out-state production).
But I would point out that net metering does allow for the use of wind and/or solar - but only from the customer level, not the utility level.
Now I am not sure that there are any utility production from wind or solar, in Wyoming or nearby state which Wyoming purchases from.
But if there is, I can see how this law could be construed as obstructing utility level wind and/or solar.
But it does not discourage (I think) residential customer level wind and/or solar.
It does tax the shit out of it. And DEMANDS that 95% of commercial power production is done via a specific set of power generation, the only renewable one being hydro (because without hydro you simply can't do nuclear power).
So quite how you can't see it obstructing solar and wind power is impossible to explain.
'course you have homeonwner societies that will have rules against building on the roof,along with zoning laws, and so on.
RickA, please explain to the rest of us non-libertarian types how and why the Wyoming law is impinging upon cherished libertarian values of being able to do whatever you want to do (and in this case being able to generate & sell power any way you wish to do so), and why Wyoming must therefore become the object of right-wing derision for this attack on freedoms.
RickA - still waiting your answer.
I love the sound of breaking glass.
It doesn't stop homeowners from generating their own solar or wind.
It doesn't ban utilities from creating solar fields or wind farms - but it may certainly discourage it.
So I don't see the attack on freedoms you do.
Uh, that's a repeat of the nonanswer, rick.
Why are you having so much trouble with seeing government interference with running a business this time, hmm? It's the fact that you're a climate denier, isn't it, and this holds back the change to renewables and reinforces fossil fuel usage. Your complaints about government interference was a lie: it's just a stick to beat your political opponents with, wasn't it.
I think we just discovered which area of patent specialty RickA practices:
He's a Fossil Fuel (Oil & Gas Extraction?) Technology Patent Attorney.
He's defending his precious lifestyle again...
I think the only truly infinite thing in this universe is the ability for rickA to lie about something and feign surprise when called on it. But then he is a libertarian, and they view ethics and honesty as failures.
Failures of character, that is.
Only because the Big Orange Ape doesn't feign surprise...
So, effectively, renewables tax good, carbon tax bad.
Carbon tax doesn't ban utilities from using fossil fuels, does it. But he sees the attack on freedoms there all right!
Being sued for libel also doesn't ban Steyn from saying what he likes. But he sees an attack on freedoms there too!
Actually I said "So I don’t see the attack on freedoms you do."
So I DON'T see an attack on freedom.
I also never said Mann couldn't sue Steyn for defamation.
I simply think Mann is going to lose.
So on both fronts, you are wrong Wow.
Yes, I read you saying "So I don’t see the attack on freedoms you do.” too. Are you feeling fine?
"So I DON’T see an attack on freedom."
So you don't see an attack on freedom when Steyn is being sued for libel by Mann. Good.
"I also never said Mann couldn’t sue Steyn for defamation."
But do you see me saying you said he couldn't? No? Then why bring it up.
Oh! I get it. You're deflecting.
You don't see the problem, but you do on that thread because you're making this shit up.
PS carbon tax, dude. Another avoidance you lowlife scum.
I am assuming you are talking about me in this quote:
"Carbon tax doesn’t ban utilities from using fossil fuels, does it. But he sees the attack on freedoms there all right!
Being sued for libel also doesn’t ban Steyn from saying what he likes. But he sees an attack on freedoms there too!"
So I read you as saying I DID see an attack on freedom, when in fact I didn't see an attack on freedom.
I do agree that Steyn being sued by Mann is not an attack on freedom.
I just think Mann will lose.
Also wow - what carbon tax?
"So I read you as saying I DID see an attack on freedom"
Not "said Mann couldn’t sue Steyn for defamation.” as you "defended" yourself with.
"when in fact I didn’t see an attack on freedom."
Yup, you're claiming that, but you is lyin', son.
"I do agree that Steyn being sued by Mann is not an attack on freedom."
Cept you keep accusing it of being wrong because of the first amendment. You said that. You said it was an attack on freedom. OVER ON THAT THREAD.
And on THIS one, where your words there aren't visible, you're lying and claiming you don't.
The carbon tax proposed to fight AGW, retard.
Oh what a tangled web we weave,
(and find hard to remember in detail)
when first we practice to deceive...
Wow - quote please from "OVER ON THAT THREAD".
So you are not bothering to read my words, but just reading my mind.
Do you think the Wyoming bill has a carbon tax?
Because I have no idea what carbon tax you are talking about.
Yes, I am bothering to read your words, dick.
I'm saying the ones you put here are lies.
I still read them.
Just don't believe them.
Do you just believe things are lies without reading them? Ah, what am I saying, 'course you do. You just read what tells you what is lies and then believe with all your heart. Mind has unfriended you.
No, I don't know if Wyoming has a carbon tax, but it might do. I have no idea why you asked me that, though, since I never said it did. Never even mentioned Wyoming having or not a carbon tax.
But you're just avoiding and deflecting like the lying scumbucket you are, aren't you, Dick.
Nope - not avoiding or deflecting.
Bernard brought up "carbon tax" in #54 and then you just kept on going with it.
But Bernard was talking about the Wyoming bill, which you yourself brought up in #38.
I am just trying to follow which things you are wrong about - it is confusing trying to follow your ramblings.
Yup, lying again.
If anybody is avoiding or deflecting - it is you.
But ok - I will let lurkers read the thread and decide for themselves.
rickA lying? Must be a day with vowels or consonants in its name.
Let us decide: RickA, should citizens of Wyoming be allowed to get power and/or generate power any way they want to? Should power corporations in Wyoming be allowed to freely generate power any way they want to?
Or should big, bad government tell Wyoming citizens and corporations what they can use and what they can't use to generate and sell power?
Tell us. We'll decide...
Ok - I will play.
Citizens should be able to get and/or generate power any way they want to.
The law doesn't prevent them from generating their own power with wind and/or solar.
Power corporations should be allowed to freely generate power anyway they want.
The law doesn't prevent that from occurring.
From my reading of the law - they do have to pay a fee for power generate from wind farms and/or solar farms.
But they are not prevented from building and generating the power - or charging customers for power generated from those green sources.
Since they cannot pass along the fee, they are merely charging less to customers provided with renewable power
Did you look at the law?
Where does it prevent anyone from generating power from any source?
Why should they have to pay a fee to generate power from "green" sources? That's impeding their ability to run a business profitably. Should that be tolerated? Sounds like big government putting undue pressure on them to control their business. Should government be trying to force businesses to adopt policies that aren't in their best interests? Or should they be allowed to run them without such encumbrances and interference?
Well the fee doesn't make a great deal of sense to me.
But states do have the power to pass stupid laws.
Are you libertarian now?
Just because I'm against stupid laws that seek to shackle or manipulate businesses, it doesn't mean I'm libertarian.
And the above doesn't mean I'm this or I'm that. I don't care for such labels.
I'm on the cafeteria plan. And I don't let anyone put crap on my plate...
"Why should they have to pay a fee to generate power from “green” sources? "
It's the libertarian way - you know, get government out of the way except when we want it to protect things we like. Think of it this way - the free market is wise, but occasionally it needs a little help from the government - but only help that benefits the libertarian way of life. It definitely should not be to help "others".
"Well the fee doesn’t make a great deal of sense to me."
But you are lying again. We KNOW you hate carbon taxes or surcharges on petrol to cut down on the use of it. Or any form of getting industry anywhere to pay for externalities (as long as those industries don't sound lefty or hippie).
You don't see a problem because you're a partisan hack who hides their partisan greed behind a "I'm a libertarian", but only when it suits. But you still demand you get to wear that camoflage of almost-respectability.
"If anybody is avoiding or deflecting – it is you."
Nope, it's just you.
Day 3: "I think sometimes we can disagree with the facts."
Day 4: Trump to EPA:
No press releases, no new content on websites, no new posts on social media.
Day 5: Torture works.
Day 6: Torture "absolutely" works.
Day 7: No Muslims Need Apply
Day 8: “It's working out very nicely. You see it in the airports, you see it all over..."
From The Boston Globe
"Trump’s executive order would ban immigration from seven countries. It doesn’t include Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, or Turkey. This is strange for two reasons: Individuals from those countries have killed more than 3,000 Americans in terrorist attacks and President Trump has business relationship in all four countries. He doesn’t have any business connections in the seven nations from which immigration is suspended."
Day 9: From The New York Times:
"The Trump administration defended on Sunday a reorganization of the National Security Council that elevates the president’s chief strategist, Stephen K. Bannon — a political adviser with no direct national security role — to full membership and downgrades the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff."
Day 10: Trump signs executive order requiring that for every one new regulation, two must be revoked
This is so astonishingly stupid that one wonders if it may be a trigger for impeachment or removal on the basis of mental incompetence.
If there are n regulations, by the time that n/2* new regulations are instituted there would be no regulations left.
The country would be completely unregulated...
(*At a maximum, as old regulations may be removed regardless...)
He'll have to start removing the regulations that govern citizens. I.e., federal laws that control what individuals can/cannot do. E.g., he'll have to eliminate the law that makes it illegal to murder a federal agent. Of course, that just delays the inevitable that Dean points out: eventual total anarchy.
RickA would love it.
Oops, that's Bernard J, sorry!
Acting Attorney General declares Justice Department won’t defend Trump’s immigration order
I posted my prevous at #86 at dawn, after having woken from a fever, and then went back to bed. In an reflection of Kekule's benzene inspiration I realised later, whilst dreaming, that it's not actually n/2 but just n more implementations of regulations that would see no regulations existing.
Or at least one remaining regulation - I don't know what Trump's order would indicate when they got to the last regulation and there weren't two left to remove from the books... Perhaps the collective alt-right mind would explode with the cognitive dissonance of the ridiculous corner in which they would have painted the nation.