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Member since: Thu Jul 26, 2007, 04:26 PM
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All-time icon Art Spiegelman responds to Maus ban on CNN (while vaping).

All-time icon Art Spiegelman responds to Maus ban on CNN (while vaping).

By Jessie Gaynor
January 27, 2022, 10:49am

Yesterday, as the “Intellectual Dark Web” continued to hand-wring about the perils of over-wokening, a Tennessee school board voted unanimously to ban Art Spiegelman’s Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel about his father’s experience in the Holocaust, ostensibly due to the book’s “rough, objectionable language” and nudity (a small illustration of Spiegelman’s mother, nude in a bathtub having died by suicide).

The only silver lining of this terrifying case of (actual) censorship is that it gave us one of the greatest television interviews of all time, when Spiegelman appeared on CNN to respond to the news, while affably sipping coffee and vaping.

Spiegelman elegantly summed up his reaction, saying, “I’ve moved past total bafflement to trying to be tolerant of people who may possibly not be Nazis? Maybe? Because having read the transcript of the school board meeting, the problem is sort of bigger and stupider than that.”

Ron Gilmer, the segment’s director, said on Twitter of the interview that “In 40 years of Directing TV news I’ve never seen this. He was amazing.”

Spiegelman, confirmed coolest man in America, went on to call the school board’s response “daffily myopic.” Well said (and vaped).

[via CNN]


Split large population states, add DC and Puerto Rico as States, and end filibuster would preserve

the original intent of the Senate and improve representative democracy at the State and Federal level.

Ending the filibuster is the most practical now, splitting states would be much more involved. Adding DC and Puerto Rico is somewhat in between as far as implementation and las a leg up politically now.

The Senate would be expanded as each split State would add Senators.

I would propose that California and Texas be split into 3 states and New York and Florida be split into two States.

The split States and new States would add 16 Senators to the Senate.

Maya Miller

Maya Miller was the mother of my roommate, Eric, at a boarding school near San Francisco in 68-69, out sophomore year of high school.

The 3rd weekend she came to visit and took us to an anti-war rally at the Marina Green near Fisherman's Wharf. That time is when I became an anti-war Democrat. I have never wavered.

I last visited Eric when he was living with Maya and his wife at the Washoe Valley ranch in 1994 just before I moved from California to Oregon. Both have long passed on now, Eric before Maya.

Why Maya Miller today?

>>In 1974, at the request of several women leaders, Miller ran for the United States Senate, losing to Lt. Governor Harry Reid in the Democratic primary. At the time there were no women serving in the U.S. Senate, and her campaign drew national attention, funding and volunteers. She still managed to receive 38% of the votes and her campaign revealed that there was a strong base of women and men willing to support a woman candidate. “Maya wasn’t a real politician. She was an outside agitator fighting the powers that be,” daughter Kit Miller said. “She ran for the Senate because she felt the cause was right.”


Please read about Maya Miller at the Nevada Woman's History Project link.

Are Trump and the MAGATs being set up?

In no way should this question suggest that I support Trump or the MAGATs or mean to mitigate Trump or the MAGAT fools.

This question is based upon the Meadows, Hannity, etc, revelations in the recent news.

Video of 18/22 Betty White appearances on the Craig Ferguson Show.

Guaranteed to provide nearly 2 hours to warm your heart during for what for most are difficult and trying times.

The Democratic retirement floodgates just burst open

This is not good. Surprised we are not hearing more about this problem. News to me today.

I share concern that the Democratic Party will have a setback in the midterms.

I think we can retain the House and get some margin in a Senate majority.

Evidently the MSM and others want the Dem's to give up already. We do not have a choice to give up and need to have the faith the pendulum will swing back in our favor.

We need to find Democratic candidates, not just in Congress but in State Houses to school boards.

The Democratic retirement floodgates just burst open

Florida Rep. Stephanie Murphy announced Monday that she will not seek a fourth term in Congress, the latest in a rapid series of retirements within the Democratic ranks that suggest momentum is moving heavily against the party as it seeks to hold on to its razor-thin majority next November.

Murphy's decision came less than 24 hours after New Jersey Rep. Albio Sires said he would be retiring at the end of this Congress. And, just before the Sires' news, California Rep. Alan Lowenthal said he, too, would be stepping aside.

All together, there are now 22 Democrats retiring or running for other offices this election cycle as opposed to just 11 Republicans doing the same.

Two years ago, just nine Democrats had announced their retirement plans at this point of the election while 24 Republicans had done the same, according to CNN's political unit.

more at: https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/the-democratic-retirement-floodgates-just-burst-open/

America Is Not Ready for Omicron

IMO The Atlantic is one of the best sources of journalism left.

America Is Not Ready for Omicron

The new variant poses a far graver threat at the collective level than the individual one—the kind of test that the U.S. has repeatedly failed.

By Ed Yong

Updated at 12:00 p.m. on December 16, 2021

America was not prepared for COVID-19 when it arrived. It was not prepared for last winter’s surge. It was not prepared for Delta’s arrival in the summer or its current winter assault. More than 1,000 Americans are still dying of COVID every day, and more have died this year than last. Hospitalizations are rising in 42 states. The University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, which entered the pandemic as arguably the best-prepared hospital in the country, recently went from 70 COVID patients to 110 in four days, leaving its staff “grasping for resolve,” the virologist John Lowe told me. And now comes Omicron.

Will the new and rapidly spreading variant overwhelm the U.S. health-care system? The question is moot because the system is already overwhelmed, in a way that is affecting all patients, COVID or otherwise. “The level of care that we’ve come to expect in our hospitals no longer exists,” Lowe said.

The real unknown is what an Omicron cross will do when it follows a Delta hook. Given what scientists have learned in the three weeks since Omicron’s discovery, “some of the absolute worst-case scenarios that were possible when we saw its genome are off the table, but so are some of the most hopeful scenarios,” Dylan Morris, an evolutionary biologist at UCLA, told me. In any case, America is not prepared for Omicron. The variant’s threat is far greater at the societal level than at the personal one, and policy makers have already cut themselves off from the tools needed to protect the populations they serve. Like the variants that preceded it, Omicron requires individuals to think and act for the collective good—which is to say, it poses a heightened version of the same challenge that the U.S. has failed for two straight years, in bipartisan fashion.

The coronavirus is a microscopic ball studded with specially shaped spikes that it uses to recognize and infect our cells. Antibodies can thwart such infections by glomming onto the spikes, like gum messing up a key. But Omicron has a crucial advantage: 30-plus mutations that change the shape of its spike and disable many antibodies that would have stuck to other variants. One early study suggests that antibodies in vaccinated people are about 40 times worse at neutralizing Omicron than the original virus, and the experts I talked with expect that, as more data arrive, that number will stay in the same range. The implications of that decline are still uncertain, but three simple principles should likely hold.

article at : https://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2021/12/america-omicron-variant-surge-booster/621027/

One item that should be high priority for work from home

is to extend broadband fast internet coverage into rural and poor areas that do not have coverage at present.

Much of rural USA does not have the fast internet access that is required to fully participate in modern society.

Internet access means more working from home and less energy used for the commute.

Good internet may be the means to reboot some red minds. Have good internet where not now available would brighten the sky, the water, and maybe enough minds so we can progress and adjust.

Rural and poor and people of color and those of diverse lifestyles need good internet just to be equal, participating citizens.

Why need to pass major Build Back Better legislation.

Alameda County Supervisor Wilma Chan struck and killed by motorist

Source: San Francisco Chronicle

Alameda County Supervisor Wilma Chan died Wednesday afternoon after a motorist struck her as she was out walking her dog in Alameda, officials said.

Chan, 72, was hit around 8 a.m. while crossing the street at the city’s waterfront, at Shoreline Drive and Grand Street — an area popular with pedestrians and bicyclists. Emergency responders found Chan, unresponsive, in the roadway and took her to Highland Hospital, where she died at 2:30 p.m.

The woman driving the car that hit Chan stayed at the scene and is cooperating with investigators, police said in a statement that did not name Chan as the victim. Chan’s office confirmed she was the victim.


A longtime Democratic politician, Chan was first elected to the Alameda County Board of Supervisors in 1994. She later served on the state Assembly from 2000 to 2006, and was the first Asian American Assembly majority leader. In 2010, she successfully ran for her former seat on the Board of Supervisors, and had served since then.


Read more: https://www.sfchronicle.com/eastbay/article/Alameda-County-Supervisor-Wilma-Chan-struck-and-16590231.php

Chan was not that well known on a national level but was a strong Democratic and a trail blazer advocate for the less fortunate.

from wiki

Wilma Chan (Chinese: 陳煥瑛; pinyin: Chén Huànyīng; October 5, 1949 – November 3, 2021) was an American politician in California serving on the Alameda County Board of Supervisors. A Democrat, she served in the California State Assembly from 2000 to 2006 before being termed out, representing the 16th District, which at the time included Oakland, Alameda, and Piedmont. She served as Assembly Majority Whip from 2001 to 2002 and from 2002 to 2004 as Assembly Majority Leader, the first woman and the first Asian American to hold the position. In 2008, Chan lost a Democratic Party primary election for the California State Senate District 9 seat.

On November 3, 2021, Chan was struck and killed by a motorist.

more at: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wilma_Chan

There is a semi-drivers program at the community college in the county I reside

Has been for a long time. Just looked up the college to see if still active, College of the Redwoods (Humboldt County, California)

The timber industry is still prominent in Humboldt County but current timber harvest is maybe 20% at most of the level of harvest and processing that occurred prior to 1990 so was not sure if the program was still in existence (and it is). Logging truck driving can be pretty exciting with 25 tons of log on an 18 wheeler with narrow and steep roads, locally not paved. Guys with families in the timber industry often follow their fathers in career. There used to be many "gypo" truck drivers that worked as independent contractors and owned or leased their truck. Now a higher proportion of local timber industry trucking is corporate trucks and their are far less opportunities for the gypo truckers.

One must be 18 to enroll. One gets 90 hours in a semi, 45 hours driving and 45 observing. IMO that should be more. California issues a learners permit for truck driving.


Here are the requirements:


Eligibility will be discussed further in the mandatory informational meeting. It is important to speak with the instructor at the informational meeting before completing any of the tasks below. To attend the College of the Redwoods' Truck Driving Program, a student must be at least 18 years of age and complete or provide the following:

Pass a Basic Skills Test (Reading, Writing and Math)
Copy of current license
Current DMV License Record Print-out
CDOT Medical Exam
DOT Drug Screen
California Class A Learner's Permit
Funding confirmed - If you are being sponsored, a sponsorship letter from the sponsoring agency is required by entrance requirements deadline (note this is important because the class fee is $4295).
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