Category Archives: History

Don’s Johns

Sometimes a metaphor actually plops into your lap.  Or your hands.  Or into someplace you hope you don’t drop your cell phone.

That happened to me today, when I read an article in the Huffington Post about one of the, ahem, priorities, of the folks setting up Friday’s Inauguration of Donald J. Trump.  And really, it is a metaphor for what is to come.

You see, whenever there is a big event here in the DC area, there’s a lot of shit going on.  Literally.  Lots of people = lots of pee and poop!  So port-a-potties line the Mall, surround the Monuments; and ring the Capitol itself.  And in the DC area, one company has the scoop on poop.

dons-johns

Photo Caption  Don’s John’s.com

But, according to the Huffington Post,

Someone’s Covering The ‘Don’s Johns’ Logo On Port-a-Potties For Trump’s Inauguration

When I saw that headline, my first thought was, “Of course they are.  They’re covering up all kinds of shit.”  But this time they’re not covering up the shit, but the name.

dons-johns-2

Photo Credit:  Michael Showalter for the NY Post

Of course folks are covering up Don’s shit.  But it’s up to us to pull off the tape and show the world Don’s Johns.  That will be our job for the duration of Trump’s presidency — whether that is for 2 weeks or 4 years.  To pull off the tape on Don’s Johns.  To expose every breach of law, each unethical behavior, all threats to the rule of law.

THAT is how we will survive Trump.  Because you can’t paper over the truth for long.

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Tradition!

Every year at this time, I write about my New Years’ tradition.  It’s a good one in that it is free and guaranteed to bring you good luck or your money back.

Normally I also post it after I am pretty sure folks have consumed enough to not be concerned about the guarantee.  This year, I’m doing it early.

OK.  Here it is:

At the stroke of midnight,

OPEN the back door

and force OUT all the BAD LUCK;

open-back-door

Of course, it’ll be dark.  And not this house.  Google Image

THEN

OPEN the Front Door

front-door

This one’s not mine, either.  It’s Google’s too.

AND LET IN THE GOOD LUCK

It doesn’t matter where you are, you can do it there.  Or you can wait and do it when you get home.  It’s just important to get the bad luck out and the good luck in.

This year, because, well, because 2016 has sucked BIG TIME, I recommend holding open the back door a good long time to be sure to clear out all the 2016 bad luck.  Obviously, we closed the doors too soon last year.

HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYBODY

AND

LET 2017 NOT SUCK AS MUCH AS WE EXPECT IT TO

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My Challenge — Make Me Eat Crow

Last Wednesday as I drove to work heartbroken over Trump’s victory, John Lennon’s song Imagine came on the radio.

It didn’t improve my mood any.  Because I was already imagining plenty.

Earlier today while waiting for a doctor’s appointment, I read a blog from my hometown that posted the Democratic Town Committee’s commitment to not permit bullying, acts of hate or discrimination in town.

Expecting to see universal support for this stance, I was shocked to see the first commenters take a stand, not exactly against, the DTC, but pooh-poohing the need for such a stand.

Naturally, I commented that those commenters obviously hadn’t been paying attention during the campaign.  The result was a fairly brief round and round with the commenter, named Dan.  As it turned out, Dan was a troll; his comments were removed from the blog along with several damn good ones of mine, I will add.

But he made me think.

When George W. Bush was elected, I worried.  I didn’t think he had the brain capacity to be president, and didn’t think he could handle the job.  Obviously, I didn’t predict 9/11 or the Iraq war, but I did see in him a bully and a person too easily goaded.  I was right.  His policies led us into a stupid, unnecessary war.  His economic policies led us into a severe, catastrophic economic crisis that only the end of his presidency and Obama’s election prevented from becoming a full-blown economic Depression.

I also thought that Dick Cheney would be a good, calming, fatherly influence.  My bad.  And his, actually.

With Trump, I am afraid on a deeper level.  I’ve expressed those fears many times, so I’ll just say that nothing he has said since his election, and nothing he has done since his election, and nobody he has appointed/is considering appointing has allayed any of my fears.  He is an ignorant, hate-filled bully with small fingers who will have access to the nuclear codes in two months.

But you know what?  This is where this morning’s troll comes in.

I would love to be wrong.

I would love for each and every Trump voter to work towards proving me that I was crazy to worry.

  • Prevent bullying/hate crimes/discrimination.  Step in at your own risk when necessary.  If you say Trump will not increase these things, show me I’m wrong in thinking he will.
  • Protect social programs.  Write to Congress.  Let them know that programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are programs Americans have relied upon for decades.  Show me that I’m wrong in thinking that these programs will all be gutted to my and the middle and lower class populations’ detriment.
  • Protest against any new military actions.  If there’s time, that is.  If Trump acts in a huff, then, you have my permission to bend over and kiss your own ass goodbye.
  • Pay attention.  Be knowledgeable about current events.  Remember who is doing what.
  • Assess the economic impacts by something other than your own tax returns.  What is happening in the housing market, the jobs market.  Have their been improvements in infrastructure;
  • Evaluate the importance of the industries that are succeeding in Trump’s America.  Did Trump deliver his promises to restore the coal industry.  Manufacturing?
  • Remember your history.  If you believe, as my troll does, that comparisons of Trump’s America to Hitler’s Germany, watch what they do and prevent them from repeating history.  (That’s why we study history, isn’t it?)
  • Show me that the Federal judges appointed at all levels are interested in justice and not in advocating from the bench a la Scalia.  Make sure they protect the rights of the folks who can’t stand up for themselves.
  • Vary your news sources — none of them provide the full story or an unbiased story
  • Consider the other side’s position — and I will try to do the same

The list of things that concern me, of course,  goes on and on.

Make it so that in 4 years, I will look back at the fears I (and so many others) had about Donald Trump’s election and laugh at myself for my foolish fears.

Make me eat crow

I will gladly eat crow.  If there are any left given Trump’s plan to gut all sorts of environmental programs and the climate change pact.

eating-crow-1

Photo Credit:  https://c2.staticflickr.com/2/1127/1009248999_385551a5f6.jpg.  But you know I got it from Google Images.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The problems of victory are more agreeable than those of defeat, but they are no less difficult.
Winston Churchill, statesman and prime minister

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Eleven/Eleven

Friday, 11/11/16 is a big day in my family.  It’s Adoption Day.  Our 25th.

You see, on November 11, 1991, my husband John and I adopted our son, Jacob.  He was 3-1/2 months old at the time.  Jacob was born in Chile, and John and I literally traveled to the end of the earth to turn a happy couple into a happier three-some.   It was on 11/11 when the Chilean court approved us and said, yes, Elyse and John, “You’re Parents!”

For years, I’ve told Jacob that I knew something was up with that number.  As a teenager, I was fixated on 11:11.  I got a clock radio for my 16th birthday – it was an old-fashioned “digital” clock, with numbers that literally flipped on a carousel.  Every night I waited until 11:11 before I could go to sleep, no matter how tired I was.  I’ve always told Jacob that, even though I didn’t know what it meant then, well, my heart obviously knew that 11:11 meant something.  Something big.

But I didn’t know just how big or just how wonderful.

Because 11/11 = Jacob.  Our son, my baby, our boy, our young man.  Our hilariously funny, nutty, astute guy.  Our pride and joy.   Jacob, you continue to delight, amuse and inspire us.  We love you, Peanut.

And because we all need to laugh, here’s one of Jacob’s favorite Elevens.  And we all need to laugh, don’t we?

*****

And Happy Veterans Day to any/all Veterans.

[This is a re-post.  Updated.  Because I’m busy.  Sheesh.]

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The Difference and Hillary’s Chicken

As if we needed reminders.  As if you couldn’t imagine this sort of thing happen.  In case you need to show the difference in the two parties.

Show ’em this.

J.J. Holmes has severe cerebral palsy.  He is 12 and is confined to a wheel chair.

On Saturday, his mother took him to a Trump rally, where he wanted to protest Trump’s treatment of folks with disabilities.  So they raised a Hillary placard.  And they were thrown out.

According to one report I read:

This is truly disturbing to me … What I witnessed while covering a Trump rally today. Wheelchair-bound JJ Holmes, 12, who has cerebral palsy, and his family were ordered out of Saturday’s Trump rally by Trump after they chanted for Hillary Clinton. JJ begged his mom, Alison, to travel over two hours so he could attend. JJ begged his mom, Alison, to travel over two hours so he could attend. Unable to speak, JJ communicates through a special device similar to Stephen Hawkings. JJ is passionate about politics and concerned about the future of all humans but especially those with disabilites. Alison said the family was kicked by Trump supporters and had to shield JJ’s wheelchair as Trump supporters gathered to push JJ’s wheelchair out of their space. Alison was called a child abuser and a murderer. This is just so, so sad! Tears are burning my eyeballs but then I look at JJ smiling afterwards when he asked his mom if she is proud of him.

Trump himself ordered the boy and his mother to be thrown out of the rally. His deplorable supporters taunted them on the way out. Taunting a disabled child? The lowest of the low.

That’s not exactly how the Democrats acted.

Instead, J.J. and his family got to meet President Obama.

Attribution: Valentina Pereda on Facebook (via Daily kos)

Attribution: Valentina Pereda on Facebook (via Daily kos)

Since Hillary started her advocacy working to get disabled students admitted to school, I’m pretty sure s he’s good with Obama supporting her on this one.

Trump’s supporters were kicking at JJ’s wheelchair.  What sort of people do that?

Oh yeah.  Deplorable ones.

*****

Don’t be confused by the second half of my title.  I don’t think that Hillary IS chicken.  Nope, not a bit.

But she DOES makes a fine chicken dish that made it into the 1987 Congressional Club Cookbook, which has recipes from all sorts of congress members, their spouses, governors and their spouses.  Both Bill and Hillary have recipes in it, befitting the first power couple — both cook.

I Took This Picture! It's MY Cookbook!

I Took This Picture! It’s MY Cookbook!

It's my snapshot of the page.

That’s my proof.    And my picture.

It’s quick, easy and perfect for a weeknight meal.

This time, I may have it with champagne.

 

*****

I’m really looking forward to writing about non-campaign related shit!

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For Kids

Another reason to vote for Hillary.  The Children’s Health Insurance Program.

Here, you’ll need this.

hanky

Societies are judged by what they do for their most vulnerable.

My thanks to Crooks and Liars.com who showed me this video.

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Call Me “Rigger” on Election Day

So you thought I was a more or less law abiding citizen, except for when I bribe French government officials.  In fact, reality is far worse.

Because on Election Day, November 8, 2016, I will be in an undisclosed polling booth, watching.  And I’ve even been trained for this nefarious activity.  In fact, I’m one of the folks Donald Trump is so concerned will “rig” the election.

It’s true.  A coordinated effort has been made by the Democratic Party.  You see, on Saturday, I went to a class where my fellow instigators and I learned what to do.  And “fixing” an election is as easy as taking candy from a baby.

What did we learn?

Well, you may have to cover your ears/eyes/heart.  Because it is evil unbridled.

  1. Study the Virginia voting regulations.   They include information on acceptable forms of ID, what to do if a voter’s name on ID doesn’t match the one on the roll (if a woman got married, for instance, or if there is a slight misspelling), or the voter has moved, etc.  The regs say what is legal and what is not.
  2. Arrive at undisclosed polling precinct obscenely early (5-f’ing:15).
  3. Bring baked goods.
  4. Observe the non-partisans set up the voting machines.
  5. Check that all voting machines register “0” prior to the doors opening to voters at 6.
  6. Share baked goods.
  7. Watch as they open the doors promptly at 6.
  8. Monitor that voters are not hindered from voting.
  9. Assist the election official (the “Chief”) in instances where the voter has a problem — incorrect ID, came to the wrong precinct, not registered, name or address doesn’t match the voter list.  We learned how to ensure that the Chief follows the regulations.  As legal folks, we understand how to read the regs.
  10. When appropriate, let the Chief and/or voter know what alternate IDs are valid.
  11. If necessary and there is no legitimate way for the voter to cast a regular vote, have him/her cast a provisional ballot.
  12. Make sure nobody who has cast an absentee ballot votes again.
  13. Monitor the length of the line, let Dem HQ know if there are problems.
  14. Ensure the voting machines are working.  Let Dem HQ know if there are problems.
  15. Enjoy baked goods, lunch, coffee and bathroom breaks when possible.
  16. Repeat.

Nefarious, no?  Downright wicked.  The evil continues all day until the polls close at 7 p.m.  Then comes the fun stuff.

  1. Make sure that anyone in line at closing time is allowed to vote.  That’s the rule.
  2. Ensure that the officials close and lock the door once everybody in line has voted.
  3. Verify that the number of voters who checked in = the number of votes cast (adjust for provisional ballots cast, naturally).
  4. Ensure that the Chief contacts the Secretary of State and reports the correct number of ballots cast for each candidate and the tally for any ballot initiatives voted on.  Presidential.  Congressional, local, ballot initiatives.
  5. Collect personal items.
  6. Go home.

Try to stay awake long enough to learn who won the election.

rigger-2

My badge from last time with my friend, Rigger.

I should tell you that when I did this in 2012, there was one incident. I’m sure you’ll agree it was obviously voter fraud.

An 86 year old woman came in to vote, but had already voted absentee.  She forgot she’d voted already.  She had trouble walking and had been dropped off at the voting station by her daughter.  “Oh, I guess you’re right,” she said when told she had voted already.  “I forget things sometimes.”  I called her daughter for her on my cell phone, and the woman and I chatted as she waited, eating baked goods.

*****

There are poll observers from both parties at many polling stations across the country.  It is one of the ways that our system ensures the integrity of the vote.  As a man I respect and admire said earlier today:

WASHINGTON — President Obama said Tuesday that Donald J. Trump should “stop whining and go try to make his case to get votes.”

Speaking at a Rose Garden news conference with Matteo Renzi, the Italian prime minister, Mr. Obama also called it “unprecedented” for any presidential candidate to “discredit the elections” before any votes were even cast, as Mr. Trump has done repeatedly in recent days.

“One of the great things about America’s democracy is we have a vigorous, sometimes bitter political contest, and when it’s done, historically, regardless of party, the person who loses the election congratulates the winner, reaffirms our democracy and we move forward,” Mr. Obama said.

Speaking of the tradition of a peaceful transfer of power after presidential elections, Mr. Obama said, “That’s how democracy survives.”

“I have never seen in my lifetime or in modern political history, any presidential candidate trying to discredit the elections and the election process before votes have even taken place,” Mr. Obama said. “It’s unprecedented. It happens to be based on no facts.”

Elections Matter. 

Vote on November 8

Make sure you know where to vote and have appropriate ID in states where ID is required.

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