Elsewhere for October 21, 2017

You should read this for 10/21/2017:


Macro Photos That Capture the Beauty of Peacock Feathers

Books, Writing, and Language

School district pulled ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ from shelves because it ‘makes people uncomfortable’That’s kind of the point; wrong-doing is supposed to make us uncomfortable. It’s called having a conscious.

Glenn Fleishman via Medium on Re: Coding the Lobster How Emojis became “official.”

How UNH Turned A Quiet Benefactor Into A Football-Marketing Prop This isn’t the first time I’ve been embarrassed and ashamed by UNH. The library is important; the football team? Not so much.

Sarah Hughes via The Guardian: Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles: far more than sex and swords “This saga of a courageous 15th-century Scottish nobleman, contending over six volumes with many a lethal challenge, has kept me rapt for 30 years.”

I too discovered The Lymond Chronicles as a teen, and have worn out various editions, and purchased them for friends. I wrote about my relationship with Dorothy Dunnett’s Lymond Chronicles here, but with the seasonal swing towards autumn, I’m about to begin re-reading them, and this time, I’m planning to write about it. Just in time, too; there’s apparently a Lymond Chronicles television series in the making.

Food and Drink

Easy Meat And Cheese Stromboli Via Simply Recipes: You start by using prepared (or purchased) pizza dough, which you roll out, layer with meat, cheese and savory toppings. “Stromboli is a long roll of meat and cheese wrapped in pizza dough, which is then cut into individual slices for serving. It’s an Italian-American invention from the 1950s, apparently named for the film “Stromboli,” which was on the silver screen at the time.”

Also via Simply Recipes: Parker House Rolls.

History and Archaeology

American Fascism, in 1944 and Today
“Seventy-three years ago, The New York Times asked the sitting vice president to write an article about whether there are fascists in America, and what they’re up to.”

Hundreds of Mysterious Stone ‘Gates’ Found in Saudi Arabia’s Desert I wonder what these man-made stone structures are; and I wonder if they were meant to direct water. They remind me a little of fish traps made of stone.

Native American Secrets Lie Buried in Huge Shell Mounds Some of the oyster mounds that I remember as a kid are no more. Oyster mounds are heaps of discarded oyster shells left by native Americans in the distant past, which often reveal all kinds of data, as well as artifacts.


After Herald Catches Prison Guards Running Child “Fight Clubs,” State Attacks Reporters

Cristina Alonso, a 22-year-old college student from Spain, planned to visit Oregon for six weeks this summer. Instead, border agents sent her to NORCOR jail in the The Dalles for over 48 hours. Her friend, Professor Laurie Bridges, shares the shocking story.

Hero-Princess-General Carrie Fisher Once Delivered a Cow Tongue to a Predatory Hollywood Exec

How Congress allied with drug company lobbyists to derail the DEA’s war on opioids

Molly Ringwald Says She Has Worked with Several “Harvey Weinsteins” “I could go on about other instances in which I have felt demeaned or exploited, but I fear it would get very repetitive,” she said. “Then again, that’s part of the point. . . . Stories like these have never been taken seriously. Women are shamed, told they are uptight, nasty, bitter, can’t take a joke, are too sensitive. And the men? Well, if they’re lucky, they might get elected president.”

“This is the future that Liberals want.” “When Twitter user @polNewsNetwork1 posted a photo of a Muslim woman and a drag queen riding the subway next to each other on Wednesday, and proclaimed them as “the future that liberals want”, we’re pretty sure they weren’t expecting the response they received from the Internet.”

Pay It Forward

He Broke the Law to Build a Better Nursing Home “All those animals in a nursing home broke state law, but for Thomas and his staff, it was a revelation. Caring for the plants and animals restored residents’ spirits and autonomy; many started dressing themselves, leaving their rooms and eating again. The number of prescriptions fell to half of that of a control nursing home, particularly for drugs that treat agitation. Medication costs plummeted, and so did the death rate.”

There’s still time to save the Great Barrier Reef from dying “We’re killing one of the world’s most spectacular natural wonders. It’s not too late to change.”

Science and Technology

Watch astronauts flip when they get to play with a fidget spinner on the space station “We’re not entirely sure if fidget spinners are still a thing on Earth. But judging by a new video from NASA, they’re still cool on the International Space Station.”

FCC’s DDoS claims will be investigated by GAO


💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

‘He believes his own lies’: Trump has a fake Renoir painting he’s been claiming is real for decades

Trump Given A Subpoena For All Documents Relating To Assault Allegations
“A woman who said Donald Trump groped her has subpoenaed his campaign for documents about “any woman alleging that Donald J. Trump touched her inappropriately.” Trump has denied her accusations and is fighting the subpoena.”

Trump Denies Family Claim He Disrespected Fallen Soldier

Trump offered a grieving military father $25,000 in a call, but didn’t follow through

Father of fallen soldier wants to learn to use Twitter so he can call Trump ‘a damn liar’ “Mr. Brooks lost his son Sgt. Roshain E. Brooks, 30, in a “mishap” during an engagement with ISIS forces in Iraq. He told the Post that the White House never called, in spite of Trump’s claims to the contrary.”

Via NPR: Numbers Disagree With Trump Golf Course Claim Of ‘Millions To Charity’

Elsewhere for October 14, 2017

You should read this for 10/14/2017:


Living with gods: highlight objects A British Museum blog post highlighting some of the objects in the upcoming exhibit;  Living with gods: peoples, places and worlds beyond . These objects representing various religions and philosophies about life and death and existence highlight the ways humans are similar. See also this post about the Lion Man figure 40,000-year-old walrus ivory figurine found in Stadel Cave, Baden-Württemberg, Germany, the oldest known evidence of religious belief in the world.

Books, Writing, and Language

Florida Superintendent Orders Ban on All Books Judged ‘Inappropriate’

The order from Superintendent Mike Thomas targets for removal any library materials, textbooks, or supplemental texts that contain “profanity, cursing, or inappropriate subject matter.”
It is unclear exactly what prompted Thomas’ action at this time, but if followed to the letter it would undoubtedly decimate both curricula and library collections. For just a small taste of the impact, consider the four books on the district’s summer reading list for 8th graders:
* Lord of the Flies by William Golding
* The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
* Summer of My German Soldier by Bette Greene
* Young Man and the Sea by Rodman Philbrick

Food and Drink

Slow Cooker Carnitas Breakfast Tacos Start the pork roast cooking in the slow-cooker the night before; then add eggs and the usual taco trimmings for a hearty autumn breakfast. I’m already ready for breakfast (or lunch or dinner). The recipe calls for a pre-packaged marinated roast, but really, you can do that yourself before crocking the roast.

History and Archaeology

Facebook know-it-all mansplains ‘Raiders of the Lost Ark’ costume — to woman who designed it

Law and Order

Homage to Catalonia: What just happened in Spain’s would-be breakaway region?

Outside observers are amazed to see such chaos and violence in a stable, modern democracy. But Spain isn’t one. For people in Catalonia, and Catalan people around the world, it’s impossible to shake the image of a police officer grabbing a woman by the hair and throwing her downstairs, then using his baton to strike an elderly lady who is raising her hands in the air in a sign of peaceful protest. Or the image of riot police stomping on people of all ages who are sitting on the floor, hitting them and shoving them aside, breaking their bones even after they’ve moved out of their way. It is hard to reconcile those images of the nearly 900 Catalan citizens injured in recent protests, with the idea that Spain is a modern, robust democracy, as people in other Western nations apparently consider it.

John Kelly’s personal cellphone was compromised, White House believes

A September White House memo follows news that Chief of Staff and former director of Homeland Security John Kelly’s personal cell phone had been compromised potentially as early as December 2016.’

California challenges Trump’s rollback of birth control mandate “California Attorney General Xavier Becerra (D) on Friday filed a lawsuit challenging the Trump administration’s rollback of an Obama-era policy that required employers include birth control coverage in their health insurance plans. Xavier Becerra said:

Donald Trump wants businesses and corporations to control family planning decisions rather than a woman in consultation with her doctor. These anti-women’s health regulations prove once again that the Trump administration is willing to trample on people’s rights

The New York Times’ Jodi Kantor and Megan Twohey broke the story and the New Yorker took it farther: From Aggressive Overtures to Sexual Assault: Harvey Weinstein’s Accusers Tell Their Stories “In the course of a ten-month investigation, thirteen women interviewed said that, between the nineteen-nineties and 2015, Weinstein sexually harassed or assaulted them.”

And in that context: Harvey Weinstein may have been fired illegally by The Weinstein Company. The company “wrote a contract that said Weinstein could get sued over and over for sexual harassment and as long as he shelled out money, that was good enough for the Company”

Rebecca Solnit On Harvey Weinstein, Hillary Clinton, And Blaming Women For The Acts Of Men “Harvey Weinstein is Hillary Clinton’s fault, we have learned from many sources. So is eczema and the Civil War and the fact that your child refuses to learn to tie shoelaces and sticks to Velcro shoes.”

Pay It Forward

Veteran Who Stole Truck to Save 30 Vegas Shooting Victims Surprised With New Car

Science and Technology

A horrendously bad “vaxed/unvaxed” study rises from the dead yet again

It’s not the cost of Pence’s trip that was galling. It was the preparation for it.

These Are the Oldest Known Flowers in the World Found in the fossil record, these plants are more than 100 million years old

How Israel Caught Russian Hackers Scouring the World for U.S. Secrets “The Israeli officials who had hacked into Kaspersky’s own network alerted the United States to the broad Russian intrusion, which has not been previously reported, leading to a decision just last month to order Kaspersky software removed from government computers.”

Starving Killer Whales Are Losing Most of Their Babies

A nearly 70 percent miscarriage rate is threatening the future of the southern resident killer whales. “Despite having special protections from both the Canadian and American governments, there are only 78 of these salmon-eating whales left. And as recent research shows, the southern resident population is set to slowly atrophy and ultimately disappear. On top of habitat degradation, climate change, and other challenges, the whales have another problem: they’re not having enough babies.

Penguin disaster as only two chicks survive from colony of 40,000

In the colony of about 18,000 breeding penguin pairs on Petrels Island, French scientists discovered just two surviving chicks at the start of the year. Thousands of starved chicks and unhatched eggs were found across the island in the region called Adélie Land (“Terre Adélie”).

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Elsewhere for October 7, 2017

You should read this for 10/6/2017:


The Très Riches Heures for October October is the month for seeding the winter wheat.

Books, Writing, and Language

The Scholastic Book Fair inspires authentic analog nostalgia that goes back for decades

Food and Drink

For me, October is the Month of Apples. Apple cider, apple sauce and apple butter. Pick your own orchards in New England typically offer Apple Cider Doughnuts; this Bon Appétit Cider Doughnut recipe is particularly good because it calls for apple cider, apple butter and buttermilk.

History and Archaeology

Seattle teen calls out her dad’s Native American art. He learns she’s right

Law and Order

My marriage was over. Why couldn’t I get my old name back?

The First Amendment doesn’t guarantee you the rights you think it does

Why We Never Talk About Black-on-Black Crime: An Answer to White America’s Most Pressing Question

How the Elderly Lose Their Rights

Science and Technology

After Hurricane Irma on Fort Myers Beach, Florida

Partisan Gerrymandering Got the Sotomayor Treatment ”The Justice has a knack for crafting simple, devastating questions. She was at her best in Gill v. Whitford.”

Here’s How Breitbart And Milo Smuggled Nazi and White Nationalist Ideas Into The Mainstream
“ A cache of documents obtained by BuzzFeed News reveals the truth about Steve Bannon’s alt-right ‘killing machine.’”

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You Should Read This for September 30, 2027

You should read this for 9/30/2017:


How Bewitched Was Written as a Gay Allegory Robert Pela interviewed Elizabeth Montgomery in The ADVOCATE on July 30, 1992: “Bewitched is sort of a gay allegory: the story of a different person in this case, a witch who’s being told that she can’t tell anyone who or what she really is. It’s the ultimate closet story?”

Elizabeth Montgomery responded:

Don’t think that didn’t enter our minds at the time. We talked about it on the set certainly not in production meetings that this was about people not being allowed to be what they really are. If you think about it, Bewitched is about repression in general and all the frustration and trouble it can cause. It was a neat message to get across to people at that time in a subtle way.

Books, Writing, and Language

Via BoingBoing: The Visual History of Type author Paul McNeil selects and dissects his six favourite faces

America needs the humanities more than ever. So why have we a abandoned theme?

Identifying high-quality information (and knowing what makes it high-quality) and communicating complicated or abstract ideas from multiple perspectives are at least as important to our digital future as the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) have been to the industrial age.

I’m part of the world’s oldest living culture, but could I kill a zombie with a boomerang? “No matter what your tribe is, if you haven’t noticed the wattle flowering in this season or can’t remember what that indicates about the fish in the river, then you’re going to have a bad apocalypse.”

Seattle Needs to Ask Itself: What is the Point of a City?

To boldly go for it: why the split infinitive is no longer a mistake. Not, mind you, that it ever was wrong to split an infinitive; we don’t actually have an infinitive verb form in English; we use the proposition to + verb to create one. But Latin has an infinitive form, so Victorian idiots gramaticists decided English must work the way Latin works, and made up silly rules to support their fetish.

Journaling for Writers Journaling is a fabulous way to relieve stress, freewrite, and prepare yourself for later writing. Consider starting a journal now as prep for NaNoWriMo.

Food and Drink

How to Make the Best Tomato Sauce From Fresh Tomatoes. This really is about fresh tomato sauce, not sauce meant for eating later and thus canning or freezing.

History and Archaeology

Archaeologists uncover ancient trade network in southern Vietnam

We knew some artifacts were being moved around but this shows evidence for a major trade network that also included specialist tool-makers and technological knowledge,” Catherine Frieman, lead researcher and an expert in ancient stone tools, was quoted by [Antiquity] as saying. “It’s a whole different ball game.

Law, Order, and The State

The DOJ’s new anti-gay legal posture just got shut down in federal court. On Tuesday the 26 of September in Zarda v. Altitude Express. The case involved a now deceased former employee (Don Zarda; his estate is continuing his suit) suing his former employer for sexual orientation discrimination in violation of the 1964 Civil Rights act (Title VII). The U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission are on opposite sides on the case; the DOJ, in it’s current anti-queer rights stance is opposed by the EEOC who support including sexual orientation under the umbrella of Title VII. In July the current DOJ filed an amicus brief in the Zarda case, opposting the EEOC’s position (and that of the previous administration). Here’s a sample of the attorney for the DOJ’s argument:

Judge Gerard Lynch, who asked if it is “sort of OK” to discriminate on the basis of gender, Mooppan said that employers are allowed to fire employees for out-of-work sexual behaviors, such as being promiscuous, and that there are “real, physical” differences between men and women.

“The critical difference, your honor, is that discrimination requires treating people who are similarly situated differently,” Mooppan said.

In this case, as in the earlier case involving a baker and a cake for a same-sex wedding, the DOJ was not consulted or included in the original suits; the DOJ inserted itself via amicus briefs into both cases.

This is important because if the case, or any of the several other similar cases hinging on sexual orientation and workplace discrimination being brought by the EEOC do appear before the Supreme Court, the DOJ would represent the government.

This Slate article does a good job of explaining some of the problems with the DOJ’s approach (and their attorney).

President Obama’s Final Numbers

The numbers are nearly all in now. What they show about what really happened during the eight years that Barack Obama was president is sometimes different from what politicians claimed.


But now we have a reasonably complete statistical picture of the Obama years, which began in the middle of the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, and ended with the highest level of household income ever recorded.

Pay It Forward

How you can help hurricane victims in Puerto Rico 

Target raises minimum hourly wage to $11, pledges $15 by end of 2020

Science and Technology

Folks, It’s Time to Delete the Facebook News Feed

Introducing Genie: The powerful new digital ‘friend’ Deakin University will give to every student

Barns Are Painted Red Because of the Physics of Dying Stars

Boedaspis Trilobite

Study Shows That Women Can Retain And Carry DNA From Every Man They Have Sexual Intercourse With

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Elsewhere for September 23, 2017

You should read this for 9/23/2017:


The British Museum has a killer exhibit: Scythians: warriors of ancient Siberia

Books, Writing, and Language

How ‘white people’ were invented by a playwright in 1613

Icelandic spelling, declension and etymology dictionaries now free online

Food and Drink

Rosh Hashana always makes me think of apples, pomegranates, and, my favorite, challah. Here’s an apple and bourbon bundt cake that’s easy and delicious and keeps in a freezer. Here’s a Fennel and Orange-Scented Challah that I’ve not yet made but have plans for, and a Sephardic challah with whole spices.

History and Archaeology

America’s vitriol towards Clinton reveals a nation mired in misogyny

Pay It Forward

Little Free Library: Take a Book, Leave a Book

Science and Technology

Apple responds to ad group’s criticism of Safari cookie blocking  If, as a user, I interact with an advertisement on the Internet, it will allow tracking for those sites—that’s fair. However, it won’t allow these ad groups to endlessly track everything I do on the Web and show me ads—that’s fair too.

What Apple is doing is good for consumers. We don’t need creepy ad groups tracking everything we do. If you do want that, there are Web browsers that aren’t so intelligent that will allow that to happen.

Hummingbird Pool Part Roughly 30 hummingbirds (I think all Annas) are bathing in this bird-bath fountain in Los Angeles.

Cassini’s Final Image “As planned, the Cassini spacecraft impacted the upper atmosphere of Saturn on September 15, after a 13 year long exploration of the Saturnian System. With spacecraft thrusters firing until the end, its atmospheric entry followed an unprecedented series of 22 Grand Finale dives between Saturn and rings. Cassini’s final signal took 83 minutes to reach planet Earth and the Deep Space Network antenna complex in Canberra Australia where loss of contact with the spacecraft was recorded at 11:55 UT.” The night-side of Saturn, cloud-covered, showing Cassini’s eventual impact site.

Scamming the scammers

Apple does right by users and advertisers are displeased

Elsewhere for September 16, 2017

You should read this for 9/16/2017:


Janet Takahashi has videos teaching Step-by-Step Uncial Calligraphy Half uncial is the hand used in the Book of Kells.

The Internet Fireplace Sometimes a looped video of a crackling fire is just the thing.

Books and Writing

From Glenn Fleishman via Medium: Hot Metal Transforms the Speed of Information “From 1450 to the mid-1880s, nearly every printed word was set one tedious letter at a time. Then the machine age grabbed hold.”

Lani Sarem’ was accused of falsifying sales when her debut YA reached No.1 in the New York Times Young Adult Best Seller list. “I had purchased the books directly from my distributor, Itasca Books, they would not count as sales for purposes of the New York Times list. If they were purchased from booksellers — brick and mortar or online — they would count. While I didn’t limit my purchases to only those booksellers involved in the Times list, I did purchase books in bulk from booksellers to resell them later at events.” Let me translated that for you: She deliberately, knowingly, tried to game the system and got caught. I’ll never read or review anything of hers.

Via The Chicago Tribune: Scratch-off reading list: A novel poster idea

Food and Drink

One of the traditional New England meals is the New England boiled dinner, made with corned beef. Red flannel hash is what you do with the left-overs, and that crop of fall beets. Don’t skimp on the butter.

History and Archaeology

Newly unearthed 3,500 year-old tomb with mummies unveiled in Egypt The tomb of a goldsmith Amenemhat and his wife Amenhotep was discovered near near Luxor, at the Draa Abul Nagaa necropolis, in southern Egypt on Saturday. The tomb contains “mummies, sarcophagi, statuettes, pots and other artifacts,” according to Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities.

Via the BBC: Carbon dating shows an ancient Indian manuscript has the earliest recorded origin of the zero symbol. Zero began as a dot, then evolved to the hollow circle we use today.

Yale University offers free online course on the Early Middle Ages The course, taught by Yale Religion professor Paul Freedman, is taught via a series of 22 YouTube 45 minute lectures. It covers the usual major developments in the political, social, and religious history of Western Europe and includes “the conversion of Europe to Christianity, the fall of the Roman Empire, the rise of Islam and the Arabs, the ‘Dark Ages,’ Charlemagne and the Carolingian renaissance, and the Viking and Hungarian invasions.” Haven’t seen it; don’t know if it’s inappropriately Western-centric or not yet; but it looks interesting. That said, I’m getting really tired of medieval history classes that cover the East in 10 minutes, the Vikings in 8, and completely ignore Africa.

Pay It Forward

“Being generous requires us to dedicate profound thought to what the person receiving our generosity actually needs,” McNamara says. “So often, the church makes generosity synonymous with the free giving of stuff, but it’s not. I’ve seen Westerners come in and drop off a whole bunch of stuff — toys, free food, tons of clothes. Typically it’s not useful, they’re paying way too much for overseas shipping and suddenly the local food or clothing vendors don’t make their living for the week, and those are important jobs for struggling communities.”

Science and Technology

High-Speed Hummingbird Photos Reveal Their Wacky Body Parts This photo essay about how hummingbirds fly, and feed while flying, is inspired by the July 2017 issue of National Geographic “Unlocking the Secrets Behind the Hummingbird’s Frenzy.” And if that’s not enough, see this Hummingbird Whisperer at UCLA. There’s video hereWhen I first started at UCLA I recognized the sound of a hummingbird in flight, and was delighted to see both Anna’s Hummingbird’s and the tiny Calliope hummingbirds on campus. I quickly obtained my very own hummingbird feeder.

Via The New York Times In a Fragile Partnership, Dolphins Help Catch Fish in Myanmar

On Friday September 15, 2017, Casino will plunge to a fire death on Saturn. The Cassini–Huygens unmanned mission to collect and transmit data from and about Saturn and its environs has been sending us images and other data from its orbit around Saturn since 2004. Thinks to your tax dollars helping NASA learn more about our solar system, you can down load a free ebook for Kindle, iBooks (epub) or .pdf about Cassini-Huygens and its mission: The Saturn System Through the Eyes of Cassini.

Elsewhere for September 10, 2017

You should read this for 9/10/2017:


The remains of a mastodon discovered during a routine freeway excavation in San Diego shows there was human activity in North America 130,000 years ago — or about 115,000 years earlier than previously thought. “The bones and several teeth show clear signs of having been deliberately broken by humans with manual dexterity and experiential knowledge,”

Beachgoer’s Guide to Lake Michigan Fossils and Rocks

Food and Drink

Bakery-Style Cinnamon Rolls Recipe




Even Racists Got the BluesThis is an interesting demonstration of the ways that Neo Nazis distort language; in this case, someone who thinks he’s Irish makes a fool of himself in his attempt to use Irish and make a racist assertion. From a linguistic POV, speaking as a Celticist, the usage and meaning of color names in Medieval Irish is one of the more fascinating aspects of the language and literature.

Gorse, Furze, and Whin


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Elsewhere for September 3, 2017

You should read this for 9/3/2017: Grapes, Medieval and Modern, the importance of protest, speaking truth to power and compensating for evil people. 

©Photo. R.M.N. / R.-G. Ojéda

The labor of September from the Très Riches Heures of Jean Duc de Berry. September marks the the time of grape harvest in those European countries that grow grapes, and in the state of Washngton.

Waffle House, a popular 24-hour fast food chain in the Southeast, has a unique ability to operate solely on gas if necessary, so a closed Waffle House is often tantamount to disaster.

“Your father pardoned a man who made a woman give birth in shackles.” “The inappropriateness of Ivanka Trump maintaining her business while serving a position in the White House was made all too clear last night when her company, oblivious to the firestorm of fury directed at the Trump family for the President’s abrupt pardon of racist Sheriff Joe Arpaio,tweeted out an ad for some overpriced shoes made in Chinese sweatshops. Actress Sarah Thyre of the popular television show Strangers With Candy fired back with a devastating response that quickly went viral.”

What The Arpaio Pardon Means To An Historian Of Nazi Germany æUpon gaining power, Hitler immediately pardoned allies who’d perpetrated ghastly crimes against those deemed enemies of the nation.

What do we make of Trump’s pardon of a political ally, a man duly convicted of systemic deprivations of people’s constitutional rights—people Trump never considered part of his America?”

I’m a black daughter of the Confederacy, and this is how we should deal with all those General Lees “The monuments debate isn’t about the past. It’s about present-day white supremacy and whether our nation is going to stop making excuses and stare it down.”

Leaked Chats Show Charlottesville Marchers Were Planning for Violence“While much of the discussion centered on flags, chants, and other forms of speech, the leaked exchanges also included advice on weapon construction. “You want something designed for longitudinal stress,” wrote one poster. “[Three] whacks and that thing is breaking.” Other topics included body armor and shield design. . . . Users also shared memes alluding to using vehicles against opponents.”

Thoughts on Confederate Statues from a Southern White Male “If this was about history and not white supremacy, we’d see a statue of an innocent black man hanging from a tree and a group of happy white people posing for a picture with his lifeless body. This isn’t about history. This is about whitewashing history.”

Four bakers who became trapped in their bakery for two days in the wake of Hurricane Harvey made hundreds of loaves of bread to give to flood victims.  When they realized that the water was so high in the streets outside the bakery, four bakers baked bread all day and night in a Mexican bakery, then gave the bread to those in need.

Harvey Is What Climate Change Looks Like “In all of U.S. history, there’s never been a storm like Hurricane Harvey. That fact is increasingly clear, even though the rains are still falling and the water levels in Houston are still rising.

But there’s an uncomfortable point that, so far, everyone is skating around: We knew this would happen, decades ago. We knew this would happen, and we didn’t care. Now is the time to say it as loudly as possible: Harvey is what climate change looks like.”

John Smelcer’s Nomination for a PEN Award Gets Pulled, and More Details About His Past Emerge I hate when writers do this stuff. There’s no excuse for it, ever.

The Chemical Plant Explosion in Texas Is Not an Accident. It’s the Result of Specific Choices. The perils of deregulation.

Via The New York Times Waiting for a Perfect Protest? “Media outlets and commentators representing a range of political persuasions have called attention to recent outbreaks of violence in Berkeley, Calif., Boston and other locations where anti-racist and anti-fascist demonstrators have gathered. Intentionally or not, they have often promoted a false equivalency between groups that advocate white supremacy and those that seek to eliminate it.”

There isn’t a “both sides” here; bigotry, Neo-Nazis, and hate mongers are evil. We don’t need pogroms, another kristallnacht. Speak up. Be present. Say no.

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

Via The Los Angeles Times: Republicans are asking a horrific question: Is our president insane? “Last week, the wild swings in mood and rhetoric displayed by Trump in a series of public appearances seems to have tilted public assessment of the president even more substantially toward this highly alarming view. Last Monday night, he read stiffly from a script as he outlined a rather undramatic but reasonably coherent shift in American engagement in Afghanistan, but, the next night, Trump ranted for well over an hour at a campaign rally in Phoenix, attacking the free press and members of his own political party, baying and barking like a wounded hound as he defended his contradictory comments about neo-Nazi violence in Charlottesville, Va.”

💩🔥💰 Trump: I pardoned Arpaio during hurricane because I thought TV ratings would be higher Good to know where the priorities are, dude.

Elsewhere for August 27, 2016

You should read this for 8/27/2017:


The road to hate: For six young men of the alt-right, Charlottesville is only the beginning Essentially what these young white straight men are complaining about is the fact that they are dumb asses, and they’ve got their hand out, wanting a reward for being entitled while male dumbasses. Poverty is miserable, but if you have the luxury of attending a rally hundreds of miles away, cell phone in hand, I’m not sympathetic. You’re an entitled dumbass. Grow up; stop thinking you’re special. You’re not. You’re not contributing to making the world better, you’re not helping your own family and neighbors, you’re attempting to take someone else’s cookie rather than making your own.

What is the alt-right? A linguist looks at language in Taxonomy of Trolls Linguistic data analysis of 3 billion Reddit comments shows the alt-right is getting stronger (almost more increasingly outrageous and obnoxious because they feel safe in the current climate.

Thank God for the honesty and integrity of Donald Trump, America’s moral compass during these difficult times Trump called the groups opposed to the Nazis the ‘alt-left’ and it’s about time we had an appropriate name for extremists whose views are so militant that they’re opposed to Nazis

Last week Internet services company Cloudflare reversed its long-held policy of being content-neutral and kicked The Daily Stormer out of Cloudflare’s DDoS protection service.“This was my decision. Our terms of service reserve the right for us to terminate users of our network at our sole discretion. My rationale for making this decision was simple: the people behind the Daily Stormer are assholes and I’d had enough.”

The International Space Station just pulled off the photobomb of a lifetime

Ten Ways to Fight Hate: A Community Response Guide This is a downloadable .pdf from the Southern Poverty Law Center. It’s got practical real-world suggestions about things to do in the face of hate that actually work.

How Oregon Increased Voter Turnout More Than Any Other State New evidence shows how automatic voter registration increased not only voter participation but also voter diversity.

America 2017: Georgia Woman Fired For Menstruating On The Job FYI: Women in per menopause can’t predict their periods, or the amount of blood; it can be substantial, and sudden.

Meet John Smelcer, Native American Literature’s “Living Con Job” The prolific author and academic John Smelcer has built his career on dubious claims.

1 In 10 Sanders Primary Voters Ended Up Supporting Trump, Survey Finds“What drove Bernie Sanders supporters to Trump in the general election? Looks more like race than trade.”

Via <cite>The New Yorker</cite>: A Conversation with Mark Lilla on His Critique of Identity Politics

 Federal Judge Put Hundreds of Immigrants Behind Bars While Her Husband Invested in Private Prisons Judge Linda Reade’s husband bought more prison stock five days before one of the nation’s biggest immigration raids.

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

Trump called out “anti-police agitators” in Boston — and thanked protesters an hour later

What Trump’s Increasing Isolation Could Mean For His Presidency There has been a pattern — that if anyone gets too much attention for being influential, they become a target.

That Russian Guy Who Attended the Trump Tower Meeting Is Almost Definitely a Spy

I was detained for protesting against Donald Trump. Here’s what the US Secret Service asked me In the end, I couldn’t stop wondering why theywere devoting so much time to a non-violent protestor with a banner when they could be pursuing neo-Nazis

North Carolina County Official Indicted For Rigging The 2016 Election For Donald Trump “Richard Robert Rawling, 59, of Cary, was charged with felony counts of failing his duties and obstruction of justice after allegedly skewing the vote tallies to help elect President Trump and other conservative candidates.”

Via The Chicago Tribune Something is truly wrong with Donald Trump “All in all, he appeared desperate, out of control and emotionally needy. If Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., expressed concern last week that Trump was not demonstrating fitness to lead, one can only imagine what he and other Republicans, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., with whom he is feuding must think now. He barely mentioned Republicans’ top agenda item, tax reform, and demonstrated once again that all that matters to Trump is Trump.”

Elsewhere for August 20, 2017

You should read this for 8/20/2017:

George Saunders: what writers really do when they write

A Guided Tour of Every Drink Ernest Hemingway Drinks in A Moveable Feast

Tim Cook disagrees with Trump on Charlottesville; Apple donating to Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League: “I disagree with the president and others who believe that there is a moral equivalence between white supremacists and Nazis, and those who oppose them by standing up for human rights,” Cook wrote. “Equating the two runs counter to our ideals as Americans.” Cook also said: “What occurred in Charlottesville has no place in our country. Hate is a cancer, and left unchecked it destroys everything in its path. Its scars last generations. History has taught us this time and time again, both in the United States and countries around the world.” Apple is donating $1 million each to the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Anti-Defamation League, and plans to match Apple employees’ donations to human rights groups 2 to 1 until Sept 30. Apple has also disabled Apple Pay support for several websites selling items with Nazi symbols and white nationalist imagery.

Man with eye damage from 1962 eclipse: Don’t make the same mistake I did

5 things not to do during the eclipse

💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰

3 Deaths Linked To Charlottesville White Nationalist Rally 3 Deaths Linked To Charlottesville White Nationalist RallyFull text: #45’s comments on white supremacists, ‘alt-left’ in Charlottesville Stop calling them alt-right; they are Nazis. 💩🔥💰is dangerously stupid and out of touch with reality. He ‘Went Rogue’: President Trump’s Staff Stunned After Latest Charlottesville Remarks Once again, the chief executive chose his own words over the ones that had been prepared for him.

Donald Trump at Trump Tower on August 15
Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP
How long before Kelly resigned from the Mad House?

Moar Resignations: All seventeen members of the President’s Committee on Arts and Humanities have resigned after #45’s ignorant and offensive comments about the racial violence and tragedy in Charlottesville VA. You can see their resignation letter here. The letter notes “Reproach and censure in the strongest possible terms are necessary following your support of the hate groups and terrorists who killed and injured fellow Americans in Charlottesville,” the 16 wrote in a letter to Trump. “The false equivalencies you push cannot stand.” that all seventeen members signed. Note that the letter contains an acrostic: The first letters of each of the five paragraphs combine to spell “RESIST,” a tag uses to highlight protest against the Trump administration.

Their resignations follow resignations of several business leaders from the President’s American Manufacturing Council and the Strategy and Policy Forum.