Drinking Liberally Idaho Falls Chapter Blog

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Fear

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, February 2nd
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn)
 

Special Events - Dr David Adler and the Alturas Institute are presenting another series of Constitutional Conversations, over four coming Wednesday evenings at Trinity United Methodist Church.  Each event is $10, or $40 for the series of five lectures (though now you may have missed some).  Each runs from 7 to 8:30pm, and includes a Q&A session.

  • Feb 1 - The Constitution, the War Power, and Cyber Warfare in the Age of Terrorism
  • Feb 8 - The Idaho Case That Changed the Face of Women's Rights:  Reed v Reed

Call the Alturas Institute for details at (208) 313-6554.


Fear is an amazing thing.  And it may just be the single emotion that drives conservative thought.  At least that's what I've said in the past.

Fear of terrorism has given us the Patriot Act and the DHS (under a more deliberative, competent Republican administration) and Trump's "Muslim Ban" (under an inept, tone-deaf, and showman-like administration).

Fear of brown hoards from the south has given us Trump's demand for a "great wall." And that huge, expensive effort that goes contrary to all of what America stands for has the purpose of combatting ... what?  Undocumented workers and their families do very little harm and so much good for our country.  Yet the GOP fears them so much.


Fear of somebody, somewhere getting an unearned benefit is a real motivator.  That’s one ourrage that they cannot bear.  Of course, those conservatives earn all the benefits that they get.  They earned them by having been born white and priviliged, mostly.  They earn them by taking full advantage of the existing tax code.  But damn, we cannot stand someone getting food stamps who has not followed every jot and tittle of every administrative rule.

That conservatives fear the welfare cheat more than the corporate tax cheat is telling.

And women.  Boy, do they fear women.  The women allowed to be in their club must also express fear of women - in the form of opposing the ERA, opposing abortion rights, opposing equal pay, opposing affirmative action, opposing universal heath care.

But all of these fears have something else in common - besides motivating stupid behavior.  They represent to conservatives the otherness that they dread.  That fear is how they separate themselves from the otherness of people not like them.  Other faiths, other sexes, other colors, and even the other represented by those in economic distress.

I think if you look deeply into every conservative policy, you will see that effort to maintain a safe barrier around white, Christian, economically comfortable men. If a policy does not serve to protect that group in some way, then it cannot be a conservative policy. They may have other effects as well, but the most important thing of all is to protect that group of people against those who are not that group of people.

All of that leads to the obvious question:  what is the comparable driver for liberal goals?  Do we actually work for the opposite?  To welcome people into the tribe?  I like to think so, but perhaps it isn't that romantic.

Join us at the Bee's Knees this Thursday evening and let's discuss what makes us special.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

* Ask Democrats in Congress to block Trump's SCOTUS nominee

 

Quotations of the Week

"I am very proud now that we have a museum on the National Mall where people can learn about Reverend King, so many other things, Frederick Douglass is an example of somebody who's done an amazing job and is getting recognized more and more, I notice.  Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, and millions more black Americans who made America what it is today.  Big impact."
- Donald Trump, rambling about Black History Month

 

Poem of the Week

Here

After it ended badly it got so much better
which took a while of course but still
he grew so tender & I so grateful
which maybe tells you something about how it was
I'm trying to tell you I know you
have staggered wept spiraled through a long room
banging your head against it holding crushed
bird skulls in your hands your many hearts unstrung
unable to play a note their wood still beautiful
& carved so elaborately maybe a collector would want them
stupid collectors always preserving & never breaking open
the jars so everyone starves while admiring the view
you don't own anyone everything will be taken from you
go ahead & eat this poem please it will help

About This Poem

"I continue to be drawn back to the spirit of the sonnet, especially its fourteen-line limit, which encourages the writer to get something meaningful said before the poem is over.  Also, it can fit on a cocktail napkin, should the writer find herself with inspiration but no paper."
-Kim Addonizio

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Scary:  trial balloon for a coup
* Also scary:  a dominionist takeover?
* Interesting resource:  Townhall listing (no Idaho entries yet)
* How to build an autocracy
* A great comic illustrating privilege
* We should be getting our news from Trump, apparently
* A structural engineer analyzes the wall
* The stories of Jewish refugees being turned away is making news
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton, Oakland, or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Feb 1, 8 Weds Constitutional Conversations
with Dr David Adler - 7-8:30pm, Trinity United Methodist Church
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Just Give Him a Chance

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, January 26th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn)
 

Special Events - Dr David Adler and the Alturas Institute are presenting another series of Constitutional Conversations, over four coming Wednesday evenings at Trinity United Methodist Church.  Each event is $10, or $40 for the series of five lectures (though now you may have missed some).  Each runs from 7 to 8:30pm, and includes a Q&A session.

  • Feb 1 - The Constitution, the War Power, and Cyber Warfare in the Age of Terrorism
  • Feb 8 - The Idaho Case That Changed the Face of Women's Rights:  Reed v Reed

Also, on Thursday, Jan 26th, there will be a dinner event and lecture featuring Gina Bennett, CIA Senior Counterterrorism expert (more details to come).  Ms Bennett was one of the inspirations for the character in Zero Dark Thirty played by Jessica Chastain.

Call the Alturas Institute for details at (208) 313-6554.


Why do I need to "give Trump a chance?"  We've been hearing a lot of that lately.  Even from some people who don't claim to like Trump.  We have to recognize that the election is over, that elections have consequences, and to give Trump a chance.


Nobody as far as I know is protesting the election itself, or suggesting that elections don't have consequences.  But that last bit is confusing.

What does "give him a chance" even mean?

Are we supposed to sit on our hands for a certain length of time?  Hold our tongues?  Why?  Is there some danger that maybe Trump won't do as god a job if I'm constantly calling him a sex predator and con man?  Is he going to decide, "Well, I was going to make America great again, but those people are being mean to me so forget it!"

No  ... the request to "give him a chance" has only one purpose:  to make the person saying it more comfortable.  That person would prefer it if we shut up.  It has no other impact on the world.

That means that there is only one response to any request to "give him a chance."  And that is to double our efforts to fight Trump.


The whole issue with the attendance numbers is both trivial and very telling.  Trivial, because why does it matter?  But it also seems to be very indicative of how Trump's presidency will go.

He was apparently very worked up about it.  He tweeted about it, and spent time during his meeting at the CIA to discuss it.  He tasked his Press Secretary, Sean Spicer, with spending his first press briefing harranging the press and lying about the inauguration.  Spicer delivered the harrangue, and left without taking any questions.

Now the press briefing has a very important function.  It's how the administration officially communicates with the public.  The Press Secretary needs to have a decent relationship with the press, so that when the adminisration has important information to go out, the press will listen.  In return, the press secretary clarifies and answers questions.

Many press secretaries have quit because they lost the trust of the press pool.  Spicer did that in his very first appearance.

Not that that'a the important part of this.  The important part is that nobody in the Trump inner circle has the ability to tell Trump that he's behaving in a manner that is detrimental to his interests.  Nobody can sway him away from shooting himself in the foot.

What does that say about how the rest of his term will go?  It does not bode well for anybody.

Join us at the Bee's Knees this Thursday evening and let's talk about exactly what we should be giving Trump.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Quotations of the Week

"Twenty minutes into his presidency, Donald Trump, who is always claiming to have made, or to be about to make, astonishing history, had done so.  Living down to expectations, he had delivered the most dreadful inaugural address in history."
- George Will

 

"Trump's outrageous claims have a purpose:  to destroy rational thought."
- Roger Cohen

 

Poem of the Week

Introduction to Poetry

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.

Billy Collins

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Scary:  Donnie's first day
* Creeping totalitarianism:  Trump silences the Dept of Interior
*  ... and the EPA
* Heroic and heartbreaking story of escape from Iraq (thanks, Hollis)
* A congressional staffer explains the most effective way to communicate with your congresscritter
* Idaho's Sally Boynton Brown gives a great answer on #BLM (at the DNC chair debate)
* Do Trump's lies matter?
* Our friends from the Netherlands send a welcoming video to Trump (hilarious)
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton, Oakland, or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Feb 1, 8 Weds Constitutional Conversations
with Dr David Adler - 7-8:30pm, Trinity United Methodist Church
 
Jan 26 Thurs Alturas Institute Dinner
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Wake for Democracy

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, January 19th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn)
 

Attributed to Jenan Steward

Special Events - Dr David Adler and the Alturas Institute are presenting another series of Constitutional Conversations, over four coming Wednesday evenings at Trinity United Methodist Church.  Each event is $10, or $40 for the series of five lectures (though now you may have missed some).  Each runs from 7 to 8:30pm, and includes a Q&A session.

  • Jan 18 - The Future of Checks and Balances:  Executive Aggrandizement, Legislative Abdication, and the Framers' Vision
  • Feb 1 - The Constitution, the War Power, and Cyber Warfare in the Age of Terrorism
  • Feb 8 - The Idaho Case That Changed the Face of Women's Rights:  Reed v Reed

Also, on Thursday, Jan 26th, there will be a dinner event and lecture featuring Gina Bennett, CIA Senior Counterterrorism expert (more details to come).  Ms Bennett was one of the inspirations for the character in Zero Dark Thirty played by Jessica Chastain.

Call the Alturas Institute for details at (208) 313-6554.


Another Special Event - It's the MLK Banquet on January 19th (Thursday).  I won't be upset if you miss DL for this event.  The keynote speaker is Eric Love, Director of Staff Diversity at the University of Notre Dame.  Shilo Inn, 6-9pm.


And Another Special Event - The Women's March on Idaho Falls will be a lovely way to celebrate the commitment that we all share for equality and progressive values.  It is not anti-Trump per se, but it is timed to be a counterpoint to the inaguration the night before.  Please consider joining this fantastic event.  Saturday, Jan 21, 10am, starting at Snake River Landing.


So this week's Facebook battle was with a guy I used to admire.  He was co-chair of Obama's 2008 campaign in Idaho and a former elected legislator - TJ Thompson.  This week he posted this little status:

For those ecstatic, don't rub it in.
For those scared and upset, let's give it a chance.
We are all in this together. #TeamUSA

I do not understand this.  It makes zero sense to me.


He could have argued that we would do well to tone down on the aggressive responses to Trump, as he will be in office for some length of time.  That perhaps we should be careful and pick our battles.  That maybe he would be more inclined to do decent things if we're not so hard on him.

That would be a totally bullshit argument to make, in my opinion, but he could have said something along those lines.  People would have disagreed and presented arguments in opposition.

But no, he actualy said that we had to give Trump a chance, and that we were on the same team.  That in exchange for the Trumpeteers halting any gloating, we should give Trump a modicum of respect and civility.  It was almost - not quite, but almost - a plea for our side to simmer down and behave.

I do not accept that advice.  I don't even understand that advice.  Why should we think of ourselves as being on any team with Trump?

Another brilliant friend - Jesse Holmes - asked if Muslims were allowed on the team with us and Donald.

No - Donald Trump has explicitly excluded many Americans from that team:  women, Hispanics, Muslims, LGBTQ, the disabled, journalists, etc.  With his appointments, he has signaled a willingness to alter the game entirely, tilting the playing field away from average Americans and towards the wealthy.  His policy proposals were from out of left field.  And his personal behavior was too disgusting for the locker room.

I choose to stand with the people that he's excluding.  And Trump gets no respect from me.  Not even the title "President."

What happened to Michelle Obama's principle of "When they go low, we go high."?  By withholding the standard respect for the office, are we not responding like the other side and degrading the level of discourse.

Well, I'm not suggesting that we spit on him.  I'm not suggesting that we lie about his behavior and character.  I'm not suggesing using fraud as a weapon, or using his color or sexual preference against him.  But treating him with the level of respect that he earned is entirely appropriate.

I want Trump to know that everything he tries to do will be a huge headache.  I want him reminded every single day that he is reviled within this country.  Since he won't believe the press, and since he's surrounded himself with lackeys willing to lie to him, we have to be extra loud and obnoxious.

He should see protests wherever he goes.  His GOP member legislators should hear a thousand phone calls every time they attempt to remove a hard-won progressive gain.  His businesses should suffer for his hubris.

It's already working with Obamacare.  Let's keep it up.  And let's stop telling each other how to oppose the Trump agenda.

Join us at the Bee's Knees this Thursday evening and let's talk about it.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Quotations of the Week

"It's important to understand that the president is now entering the world of public service.  He's going to be asking his own appointees to make sacrifices.  He's going to be asking our men and women in uniform to risk their lives in conflicts around the world.  So, no, I don't think divestiture is too high a price to pay to be the president of the United States of America."
- Walter Shaub, Director of the Office of Government Ethics

 

Poem of the Week

Hip Hop Ghazal

Gotta love us brown girls, munching on fat, swinging blue hips,
decked out in shells and splashes, Lawdie, bringing them woo hips.

As the jukebox teases, watch my sistas throat the heartbreak,
inhaling bassline, cracking backbone and singing thru hips.

Like something boneless, we glide silent, seeping 'tween floorboards,
wrapping around the hims, and ooh wee, clinging like glue hips.

Engines grinding, rotating, smokin', gotta pull back some.
Natural minds are lost at the mere sight of ringing true hips.

Gotta love us girls, just struttin' down Manhattan streets
killing the menfolk with a dose of that stinging view.  Hips.

Crying 'bout getting old - Patricia, you need to get up off
what God gave you.  Say a prayer and start slinging.  Cue hips.

Patricia Smith

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Why are the Trump-Russia allegations hanging around when they aren't substantiated?
* What the bleep happened at Trump's press conference?
* Trump is unpopular for a reason
* Trump's team is dangerously incoherent
* This woman is taking a lot of heat:  I voted for Trump, not against Planned Parenthood
* Just when you thought Trump's conflict of interest couldn't get worse
* Need one of those new Trump-created jobs?  Become a Trump Honey!
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton, Oakland, or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Jan 18
Feb 1, 8
Weds Constitutional Conversations
with Dr David Adler - 7-8:30pm, Trinity United Methodist Church
 
Jan 19 Thurs MLK Banquet, Shilo Inn, 6-9pm
 
Jan 19 Thurs Wake for Democracy (a special inauguration-eve Drinking Liberally
 
Jan 21 Sat Women's March on Idaho Falls, 10am, starting at Snake River Landing
 
Jan 26 Thurs Alturas Institute Dinner
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Hypocrisy is OK

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, January 12th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee’s Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn)
 

Special Events – Dr David Adler and the Alturas Institute are presenting another series of Constitutional Conversations, over four coming Wednesday evenings at Trinity United Methodist Church.  Each event is $10, or $40 for the series of five lectures.  Each runs from 7 to 8:30pm, and includes a Q&A session.

  • Jan 11 – The Virtues and Responsibility of a Free Press:  Constitutional and Democratic Considerations
  • Jan 18 – The Future of Checks and Balances:  Executive Aggrandizement, Legislative Abdication, and the Framers’ Vision
  • Feb 1 – The Constitution, the War Power, and Cyber Warfare in the Age of Terrorism
  • Feb 8 – The Idaho Case That Changed the Face of Women’s Rights:  Reed v Reed

Also, on Thursday, Jan 26th, there will be a dinner event and lecture featuring Gina Bennett, CIA Senior Counterterrorism expert (more details to come).  Ms Bennett was one of the inspirations for the character in Zero Dark Thirty played by Jessica Chastain.

Call the Alturas Institute for details at (208) 313-6554.


Another Special Event – It’s the MLK Banquet on January 19th (Thursday).  I won’t be upset if you miss DL for this event.  The keynote speaker is Eric Love, Director of Staff Diversity at the University of Notre Dame.  Shilo Inn, 6-9pm.


In a Facebook thread about Trump losing his shit over Meryl Streep’s comments (picture above), someone tossed in the following comment:

What I really enjoy is Leonardo DiCaprio and other hypocrites like Streep..... feeling the need to tell people how to live their lives.  Lmao 😂 Leonardo cries about global warming whilst smoking his douche pipe (vape) and flying away in his private jet!  Lmao oh and driving an SUV around.  Makes me laugh!  It’s awesome he cares about it but don’t push it down everyone’s throats...... while doing the exact opposite he preaches.

It seems pretty normal to bash Hollywood celebrities.  And none of us likes hypocrisy.  Then I started to think about it.


Imagine what the world would be like if we were actually working hard on the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) problem.  People would be more conscious of their personal uses of energy.  More of us driving hybrids and using LED lighting.  Our institutions both public and private would be addressing the problem by changing policies and practices.  There would be regulations to make environmental protection more cost-effective than polluting.

But would we not have celebrities?  Would there not be people with private jets?  Would there not be bonfires and nighttime football games?  Of course those things will still exist.  So the Dicaprios of the world will still live a globe-trotting lifestyle.

But the person complaining about him says that he shouldn’t use his platform as a celebrity to make people aware of the problem, because his lifestyle sets a bad example.  Is that true?

More specifically, does an advocate HAVE to be fully consistent with the message?  I don’t think that the answer is necessarily “Yes.”

First off – individual behavior will span a range of energy footprints.  Some will practice a low-footprint lifestyle, and some will necessarily have a huge footprint – perhaps way beyond what is reasonable for any single person.  And we will want to have celebrities – it’s the way we’re wired.  Even if we finally get the conservatives to stop being assholes and solve this problem, there will be individuals who have way-higher-than-average carbon footprints.

Some of those high-footprint people are useful.  They have platforms from which they can educate, inspire, lead.  That’s part of why we have them.  And their personalities are suited for the task.  They have to travel, testify at the UN, attend rallies, and be visible doing that work.  That bigger-than-life lifestyle is why a high-profile celebrity is valuable.  And that’s often part how things eventually change.

The important thing to remember is that individuals don’t matter that much in the AGW problem.  Industries matter.  Government matters.  Institutions matter.  Regulation matters.  Individuals will follow along.  But we don’t stop AGW by making everybody individually change their behavior.  We must change society as a whole.

So complaining about one guy is useless, especially when he’s using his platform for good.  People can work for climate change response while living the lifestyle that gives the platform necessary to have an impact.

Take Al Gore, for example.  He was lambasted by people on the right because his home in Tennessee used much more energy than your typical residential home.  But he was actually running his climate change organization out of that home, so it made sense.  He was another guy working for effective solutions to AGW, but having a large personal footprint.

Second, the comment posted above is actually a silencing tactic.  If Dicaprio or Al Gore had the carbon footprint of average people, then they wouldn't be internationally known celebrities with platforms to encourage vital change.  Al Gore has to jet around th world.  Dicaprio has to be seen taking the issue seriously and speaking at the UN.  World leaders have to hold large meetings in conference cities.  [Note that I’m ignoring the possibility that Gore may be buying carbon offsets to mitigate his footprint.  That is irrelevant – let’s assume he is not doing that and is living a lifesyle seemingly very inconsistent with his cause.]

Demanding that Gore and Decaprio live low-footprint lifestyles is exactly what the climate-deniers want.  That effectively takes away their platforms.  It silences them as advocates.

Here’s the interesting thing.  I’m arguing that people can be effective advocates for certain principles without living up to those principles themselves.  That demanding consistency is dishonest in some cases.  Not every case – just some.  What is the difference?  When is hypocrisy a problem?

Here’s an example where hypocrisy is bad.  If you’re advocating for animal rights while wearing leather – that would be hypocritical.  You have actually harmed animals while appealing for other people to behave differently.  You can easily make the appeal while not wearing leather.  So you should.

On the opposite side, take the anology of campaign finance reform.  You’ve heard conservatives attack the advocates:

“Sen Hi N. Mighty says he wants eliminate big money in politics.  He wants to make things ‘fair.’  But he’s holding big fundraisers with fat cats and he’s accepting money from PACs and lobbyists!  Why doesn’t he live up to his own ideals!  Hypocrite!  He wants to make rules for the rest of us that he isn’t following!”

Of course that’s a false, dishonest argument.  Democrats generally want the system changed for the betterment of all in the long run.  If we institute effective campaign finance reform, then elections get more fair and our legislators reflect the will of the citizenry better.  But demanding that the members of one side of the debate handicap their own positions within the current rules – giving huge advantages to the GOP candidates – or be accused of hypocrisy?  That is hypocritical.  Democrats living up to hypothetical, fair campaign rules (turning down PAC donations and lobbyist money) will tend to lose more often than they do now, while the GOP candidates will continue with a larger funding advantage.  Good luck ever seeing any fix under those circumstances.

The difference between the two issues – animal rights and campaign finance – is that the first does not impact the ability of the advocate to make the argument, while the second does.  An advocate for animal rights had better be consistent.  But one for campaign finance reform does not.

The individual I was trying to convince was not sold.  Perhaps you aren’t either.  Consider this hypothetical analogy:

Say we live in a society where arguments are decided based on spitting.  The loser is the one with more spit on him.

You realize that we would get better results if we used reason and evidence instead of spitting.  I have a deep need to defend the traditional system.  So we appear before some council of some sort to have a debate.  You marshal your arguments and put forth your points as well as you can.

I spit on you.

You can’t spit back.  That would be “hypocritical.”  So you restate your opposition, coming from a different angle with eloquence and impeccable logic.

I spit on you again.

This goes on for awhile.  You’re getting wetter and slimier.

Finally, the ruling council determines that I’ve won the debate because you’re covered in spit and that’s how we decide things.  We’re going to stick with spitting as our metric.

In this hypothetical world, there is no way to change the prevailing practices unless one practices the prevailing practices.  The change you were proposing eliminated your ability to succeed.  When your ability to advocate is harmed by your proscribed solution, the definition of hypocrisy has to be gently relaxed.  I think the climate change argument is in this category.  The argument will not be won if all the advocates live off the grid refuse to fly, even if that lifestyle would be more consistent with their individual goals.

So I hope I’ve convinced you that some arguments do not require the same level of faithfulness to the point being advocated.  If not, join me at the Bee’s Knees this Thursday evening and let’s have a spit-off.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Quotations of the Week

“The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism.  Trump’s shocking victory, his ascension to the Presidency, is a sickening event in the history of the United States and liberal democracy.  On January 20, 2017, we will bid farewell to the first African-American President – a man of integrity, dignity, and generous spirit – and witness the inauguration of a con who did little to spurn endorsement by forces of xenophobia and white supremacy.  It is impossible to react to this moment with anything less than revulsion and profound anxiety.”
David Remnick

 

 

“What if... what if the people who live in diverse cities filled with multitudes of points of view AREN’T the ones living in a bubble?”
Justin Marks

 

Poem of the Week

Dear Gaybashers

The night we got bashed we told Rusty how
they drove up, yelled QUEER, threw a hot dog, sped off.

Rusty:  Now, is that gaybashing?  Or
are they just calling you queer?
  Good point.

Josey pitied the fools:  who buys a perfectly good pack of wieners
and drives around San Francisco chucking them at gays?

And who speeds off?  Missing the point, the pleasure of the bash?
Dear bashers, you should have seen the hot dog hit my neck,

the scarf Josey sewed from antique silk kimonos:  so gay.  You
missed laughing at us, us confused, your raw hot dog on the ground.

Josey and Rusty and Bob make fun of the gaybashers, and I
wash my scarf in the sink.  I use Woolite.  We worry

about insurance, interest rates. Not hot dogs thrown from F-150s,
homophobic freaks. After the bashing, we used the ATM

in the sex shop next to Annie’s Social Club, smiled at the kind
owner, his handlebar mustache.  Astrud Gilberto sang tall and tan

and young and lovely, the girl from Ipanema… and the dildos
gleamed from the walls, a hundred cheerful colors.  In San Francisco

it rains hot dogs, pity-the-fool.  Ass-sized penguins, cock after cock in
azure acrylic, butterscotch glass, anyone’s flesh-tone, chrome.

Jill McDonough

 

 

links … links … Links … LINKS … LINKS!

  A good summary of CNN’s breaking news
WE’ve elected a moron
The GOP needs to be ready – Trump will stab them in the back often
The situational ethics of the GOP
Was Donald bailed out by the Russians?
13 questions men never have to ask themselves
Sen Chuck Schumer has a simple request of McConnell
Even God gets banned from Facebook sometimes (not sure this is real (I mean the banning part)) (ah, ban was lifted)
Potential good news, but I’ll believe it when I see it
The president that David Foster Wallace warned us about (thanks, Lyn)
The best pictures from the 2016 White House
How to respond to an unsolicited dick pic (safe for work)
A day in the life of Joe Republican
Man celebrates demise of Obamacare, thankful that he’s covered by the ACA
  If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton

 

Schedule

       
Jan 11, 18
Feb 1, 8
Weds Constitutional Conversations
with Dr David Adler – 7-8:30pm, Trinity United Methodist Church
 
Jan 14 Sat ACLU Activist Academy, Boise (funding available for travel – must apply by Dec 28th)
 
Jan 19 Thurs MLK Banquet, Shilo Inn, 6-9pm
 
Jan 19 Thurs Wake for Democracy (a special inauguration-eve Drinking Liberally
 
Jan 26 Thurs Alturas Institute Dinner
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

More on Sexism

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, January 5th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn)
 

Special Events - Dr David Adler and the Alturas Institute are presenting another series of Constitutional Conversations, starting this Wednesday evening, Jan 4th at Trinity United Methodist Church.  Each event is $10, or $40 for the series of five lectures.  Each runs from 7 to 8:30pm, and includes a Q&A session.

  • Jan 4 - The Origins, Rationale, and Viability of the Electoral College:  Time for a Change?
  • Jan 11 - The Virtues and Responsibility of a Free Press:  Constitutional and Democratic Considerations
  • Jan 18 - The Future of Checks and Balances:  Executive Aggrandizement, Legislative Abdication, and the Framers' Vision
  • Feb 1 - The Constitution, the War Power, and Cyber Warfare in the Age of Terrorism
  • Feb 8 - The Idaho Case That Changed the Face of Women's Rights:  Reed v Reed

Also, on Thursday, Jan 26th, there will be a dinner event and lecture featuring Gina Bennett, CIA Senior Counterterrorism expert (more details to come).  Ms Bennett was one of the inspirations for the character in Zero Dark Thirty played by Jessica Chastain.

Call the Alturas Institute for details at (208) 313-6554.


Someone I admire posted the news that Hillary Clinton will attend the inauguration with he husband, and added the following snide comment:

If she won't even fight now, I regret having voted for her.

Small things count.  Stand against Trump.


I've seen others express a similar thought.  I can't say that it really pissed me off too much when I read it, though I did't really agree right away.  In some ways it seems similar to the refusal of so many A-list celebrities refusing to attend the inauguration.  You kind of hope that nobody important shows up.  But I wasn't ready to apply that to political figures.

But reinforcing what I said last week and two weeks before that - this little comment was full of sexism that I didn't immediately see.  It took someone named Sasha Stone to drive it home for me in a comment:

You regret having voted for [her] because she's doing what presidents and their wives have to do once they're elected by the American people?  This is OUR mess that WE have to clean up.  "fighting" by your standard would get her no end of torment from everyone.  What part of the double standard of this election didn't you get?  Didn't you see that nothing she could do she ever got any credit for and everything she did that other people do everyone hates her for?  By the way, did you vote for Bill Clinton?  Did you vote twice [f]or Bill Clinton?  And notice not a word about him, eh?  Not a word about Jimmy Carter who is also attending.  Let's just call this what it is.  Men can do things that Hillary can't.  You all treat her like a witch.  Like she has some deep down evil that can't be beaten out of her.  I wish you hadn't voted for her.  Seriously, all you guys who supported Bernie Sanders and NEVER gave Hillary a chance?  You held your nose and voted for her while millions of you turned to Jill Stein?  This shit is on you.  If YOU can't fight now, if YOU can't turn out to the polls and change things - THAT is when you should be angry.  But of course, it's always Hillary's fault eh?

Damn.

I like to write and sometimes get into a little online battle or two.  But I have never dropped a smackdown like that.  It's a thing of beauty.

I've posted it here with thanks to Sasha for providing another example of how sexism pervades our society in ways often unseen to those of us with privilege.  I promise that I am doing my best to train myself to notice this when it happens.

And if I ever do something like what my Facebook friend did, please let me know.  Let's discuss this and other issues.  Thursday night.  7pm.  The Bee's Knees.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

* Ask the Trump Hotel about conflict of interest

 

Quotations of the Week

"The election of Donald Trump to the Presidency is nothing less than a tragedy for the American republic, a tragedy for the Constitution, and a triumph for the forces, at home and abroad, of nativism, authoritarianism, misogyny, and racism.  Trump's shocking victory, his ascension to the Presidency, is a sickening event in the history of the United States and liberal democracy.  On January 20, 2017, we will bid farewell to the first African-American President - a man of integrity, dignity, and generous spirit - and witness the inauguration of a con who did little to spurn endorsement by forces of xenophobia and white supremacy.  It is impossible to react to this moment with anything less than revulsion and profound anxiety."
- David Remnick

 

Poem of the Week

Be Drunk

You have to be always drunk.  That's all there is to it - it's the only way.  So as not to feel the horrible burden of time that breaks your back and bends you to the earth, you have to be continually drunk.

But on what?
Wine, poetry or virtue, as you wish.
But be drunk.

And if sometimes, on the steps of a palace
or the green grass of a ditch,
in the mournful solitude of your room,
you wake again, drunkenness already diminishing or gone,
ask the wind, the wave, the star, the bird, the clock,
everything that is flying,
everything that is groaning,
everything that is rolling,
everything that is singing,
everything that is speaking ...
Ask what time it is
and wind, wave, star, bird, clock will answer you:
"It is time to be drunk!

So as not to be the martyred slaves of time,
be drunk, be continually drunk!
On wine, on poetry or on virtue as you wish."

Charles Baudelaire

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Propane Jane:  Instability in Chief
* Another judge who does't understand religious freedom
* Putin's long game
* A touching, painful interview
with a woman forced into a late-term abortion
* 1,100 law professors urge Congress not to confirm Jeff Sessions
* David Remnick:  American tragedy
* It's a Panda-Snowman battle at the Toronto zoo
* The lost art of sentence diagramming
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Jan 4, 11, 18
Feb 1, 8
Weds Constitutional Conversations
with Dr David Adler - 7-8:30pm, Trinity United Methodist Church
 
Jan 14 Sat ACLU Activist Academy, Boise (funding available for travel - must apply by Dec 28th)
 
Jan 19 Thurs Wake for Democracy (a special inauguration-eve Drinking Liberally
 
Jan 26 Thurs Alturas Institute Dinner
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Factors

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, December 29th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn, formerly the Guesthouse Inn)
 

What do you suppose the key factors in Clinton's loss were?  I've been compiling a list (not in any order):

Sexism
The biggest factor determining the outcome of the election in my mind, and the least discussed (before and after).  I think this factor supports and amplifies some of the following factors, too.
Email issue
The stupidest factor and the most discussed.  A complete farce, and it ate up a majority of the news coverage.  Related to Comey and to the Russia/Wikileaks hack.
White resentment
The most delicately discussed.  Can't be making the racists mad, now.
Uninspired candidate
The most overemphasized point, and probably the most vacuous.  The "Clinton is not exciting" frame was assumed by the entire media, and reinforced constantly.
Campaign flaws
The most baseless point, and I'm still hearing it a lot (often from Sanders supporters).  There is no basis behind this factor.  The Clinton campaign was about as good as can be.
Comey
This has gotten a lot of press attention, and probably did have a role.  The influence-to-meaninglessness ratio was astronomical.
Racism
Definitely a big factor.  We haven't had a nominee play the dog whistle this boldly since maybe George Wallace.


Economic insecurity
Did this get discussed, other than as a polite excuse for racism?  I missed it.  We do have an ideological divide on this.  Conservatives, no matter how they are doing, are convinced that the economy is horrible.  Liberals tend to see the reality.  The economy could be better, and has favored the wealthy too much (thanks to the GOP).  People mostly fell along pre-existing ideological lines.  However, perhaps Clinton was hurt by having Sanders run to her left so strongly.
Foreign policy
As a substantive issue, this wasn't discussed deeply.  Other than Trump's absurd claims that only he know how to take on ISIS.  Over the past two decades, the worldwide situation has been slowly unraveling due to forces outside of our control, it seems.  Conservatives think we're just not doing anything right and it just takes a tough guy.  Liberals are more nuanced.  But other than preconceived notions, I don't think this issue played much of a role.
Popularity of policies
Were these ever discussed?  I don't think they were to any realistic degree.  Clinton had popular policies designed to help people and improve the country, and Trump had a few soundbites with no actual policies.  This factor played almost no role, but should have.
Complacency
Who cares about this one?  Actually, I don't really know how much this factor played.  The Dems should have had a lot more people out voting.  Perhaps they were not paying attention, and were swayed by the GOP propaganda campaign against Clinton.
Clinton "baggage"
This factor is a 100% subset of sexism, I think.  Almost completely fabricated.  No man would have had this vague label applied to him.
Russia/Wikileaks
This factor tended to amplify the email factor rather than have any real impact itself.  I bet lots of people thought the Wikileaks emails just proved that Clinton's email practices were dangerous (even though the two factors were unrelated)
Polling
It's hard to blame polling.  It is what it is.  Polling with Trump was a new thing.
Third party candidates
Not sure.  This probably hurt both candidates fairly much equally, or perhaps it hurt Clinton a little more.  She still should have had plenty of margin.  I don't blame the Stein or Johnson voters too much on this.
Washington / Wall St insider
Also 100% sexist.  Strangely focused only on Clinton, though she didn't deserve it.
Clinton/Trump foundations
Again, strangly focused on Clinton, although Trump was the lying con man with the obvious criminal activity in his dealings.  Wonder why?
Fake news
This was not very influential in my view.  These were money-making scams targeting conservatives.  Doubt it changed any minds.
Press failure
This was huge, and there doesn't seem to be much real discussion.

Which factors were the most important?  I put sexism at the top of the list for a reason.  It seems like both the most important and the least discussed factors, plus it made several other factors possible.  Second would be the email fake scandal.  Third may be press, because it could have eliminated many of the biggest impacts.  At some point, it gets very difficult to rank them.

But my main conclusion is that almost all of the substantive factors were out of Clinton's control, and worked against her.  She was an excellent candidate and actually did run the best campaign that could be expected, essentially.

What do you think?  Did I miss anything?  What would you put at the top of the list?  Did I underrate any of the factors?

Join us this Thursday at the Bee's Knees to discuss this and other issues.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Action for the Week

  Drinking Liberally does not take official stands on issues and does not endorse any political candidates or parties.  Items appearing in this message are listed at the discretion of the sender/poster, and are intended for information purposes only.  Any opinions expressed in this message are those of the sender/poster only and not of the Drinking Liberally organization.

* Ask the Trump Hotel about conflict of interest

 

Quotations of the Week

"Responding to [Trump] with ridicule is not un-American.  It is not demeaning to the office of the President - for there is only one person in all of this who is demeaning the office of the President. ... It is not a sign that you have given up, that you are complacent or one of the winners.  When you remember that all Trump craves is to be taken seriously, it turns out that laughing is your duty."
- Rob Crilly

 

"And there's the problem: we in Alabama - in a number of conservative strongholds across America - have somehow started confusing bravado with actual strength.  That's how we ended up electing a schoolyard bully as our president.  And make no mistake, Trump is the classic American bully - a man who uses petty insults and false bravado to mask his incompetence and shortcomings.  A man so thin-skinned that he sits up late at night tweeting insults at a sketch comedy show."
- Josh Moon

 

Poem of the Week

September 1, 1939

I sit in one of the dives
On Fifty-second Street
Uncertain and afraid
As the clever hopes expire
Of a low dishonest decade:
Waves of anger and fear
Circulate over the bright
And darkened lands of the earth,
Obsessing our private lives;
The unmentionable odour of death
Offends the September night.

Accurate scholarship can
Unearth the whole offence
From Luther until now
That has driven a culture mad,
Find what occurred at Linz,
What huge imago made
A psychopathic god:
I and the public know
What all schoolchildren learn,
Those to whom evil is done
Do evil in return.

Exiled Thucydides knew
All that a speech can say
About Democracy,
And what dictators do,
The elderly rubbish they talk
To an apathetic grave;
Analysed all in his book,
The enlightenment driven away,
The habit-forming pain,
Mismanagement and grief:
We must suffer them all again.

Into this neutral air
Where blind skyscrapers use
Their full height to proclaim
The strength of Collective Man,
Each language pours its vain
Competitive excuse:
But who can live for long
In an euphoric dream;
Out of the mirror they stare,
Imperialism's face
And the international wrong.

Faces along the bar
Cling to their average day:
The lights must never go out,
The music must always play,
All the conventions conspire
To make this fort assume
The furniture of home;
Lest we should see where we are,
Lost in a haunted wood,
Children afraid of the night
Who have never been happy or good.

The windiest militant trash
Important Persons shout
Is not so crude as our wish:
What mad Nijinsky wrote
About Diaghilev
Is true of the normal heart;
For the error bred in the bone
Of each woman and each man
Craves what it cannot have,
Not universal love
But to be loved alone.

From the conservative dark
Into the ethical life
The dense commuters come,
Repeating their morning vow;
"I will be true to the wife,
I'll concentrate more on my work,"
And helpless governors wake
To resume their compulsory game:
Who can release them now,
Who can reach the deaf,
Who can speak for the dumb?

All I have is a voice
To undo the folded lie,
The romantic lie in the brain
Of the sensual man-in-the-street
And the lie of Authority
Whose buildings grope the sky:
There is no such thing as the State
And no one exists alone;
Hunger allows no choice
To the citizen or the police;
We must love one another or die.

Defenceless under the night
Our world in stupor lies;
Yet, dotted everywhere,
Ironic points of light
Flash out wherever the Just
Exchange their messages:
May I, composed like them
Of Eros and of dust,
Beleaguered by the same
Negation and despair,
Show an affirming flame.

W. H. Auden

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Why Kentucky beneficiaries of Obamacare voted to kill Obamacare
* Trump won because voters are ignorant
* The toughest man in America
* Toxic conservatism
* Obama should appoint judges
* This despondency is different
* San Francisco's response to Trump
* Shutting down the Trump Foundation?
* Lindy West:  review of Love, Actually
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Jan 1 Sun Happy New Year!
 
Jan 14 Sat ACLU Activist Academy, Boise (funding available for travel - must apply by Dec 28th)
 
Jan 19 Thurs Wake for Democracy (a special inauguration-eve Drinking Liberally
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Electoral College

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, December 22nd
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn, formerly the Guesthouse Inn)
 

Stunningly, more Trump voters think life is unfair for
the average American than for black Americans

Up to this point, I hadn't really formed an opinion on the Electoral College issue.  Sure, it seems somewhat archaic, and perhaps even a holdover from the slave-holding days.  And it has resulted in several recent deviations from the popular vote in a way that harmed the Democrats.

But there seems to be some logic to the basic argument that if we elected presidents on the basis of popular vote, candidates would focus their appeal only on populous states or the urban, costal vote.  True - it is argued that the EC causes the candidates only to focus on the swing states, which is an equally bad situation.  But I've always worried about the unintended and unforseen consequences of a change.

Right now, the system seems to unfairly favor the rural states, mostly because of the way we apportion legislators.  Even rural states get at minimum two senators and one representative, so their Electoral College representation can exceed their fraction of the population.  And these days, that means a Republican advantage in the EC, since they dominate the rural states.


On the other hand, a change seems quite unlikely.  It would require a Constitutional amendment.  Or would it?  There is an "interstate compact" that is gaining some momentum (although turning some Republican-leaning states seems to be necessary and more difficult).  This compact has states agreeing to require their EC electors to vote according to the winner of the national popular vote.  And it only goes into effect once a number of states representing more than 270 electoral votes has signed on.  So no state is penalized until enough states to decide the election have signed on.

That would work in theory.  However, one problem is that directed electoral votes have not really been tested in court.  Many legal scholars argue that states have no right to direct the votes of electors.  Many states currently do, but that has not been challenged yet.

Imagine if Trump had won the Electoral College this year, but the compact agreement caused 270 electors to direct their votes to the popular vote winner - Clinton.  That would be a legal challenge, for sure.  Perhaps that's a problem that only needs to be faced one time, but I have no real confidence that states have any right to direct the votes of EC electors.

Anyway, given all the uncertainty - and the chance that the EC advantage could shift with time - I've been fairly uncommitted on the issue.

That may have changed on December 19th.

Because, of course, one of the main reasons for the Electoral College was to prevent the masses from electing a fucking moron.  And if there was ever a time for the EC to act in a spoiler role, 2016 would be it.

The fact that not a single elector shifted away from Trump means that the main purpose of the EC is basically a fiction.  [I know that one Texas elector resigned rather than vote for Trump, but his replacement suffered no moral qualms.]

So if it is not actually doing its function, why not change it?

Join us this Thursday at the Bee's Knees to discuss this and other issues.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Quotations of the Week

"If you want to shut this down and you actually love the country enough to have the peaceful transition in our great democracy between the Obama administration and the Trump administration, there are a couple people in pretty prominent positions, one is named Obama, one is named Hillary Clinton, since his people are trying to fight over her election still, they could shut this down."
- The cretinous KellyAnne Conway, suggesting President Obama doesn't love this country

 

"One of the great disgraces of the propaganda media we have, all of us on the right should describe it as the propaganda media, drop the term 'news media' until they earn it, and begin to realize that the propaganda media cannot come to grips with the level of talent that they're dealing with."
- Newt Gingrich

 

"In point of fact, virtually everything in the post is misleading - including the spelling of 'wait,' which he later corrected."
- NYTimes' Transition Briefing

 

Poem of the Week

Poem to First Love

To have been told "I love you" by you could well be, for me,
the highlight of my life, the best feeling, the best peak
on my feeling graph, in the way that the Chrysler building
might not be the tallest building in the NY sky but is
the best, the most exquisitely spired, or the way that
Hank Aaron's career home-run total is not the highest
but the best, the one that signifies the purest greatness.
So improbable!  To have met you at all and then
to have been told in your soft young voice so soon
after meeting you:  "I love you."  And I felt the mystery
of being that you, of being a you and being
loved, and what I was, instantly, was someone
who could be told "I love you" by someone like you.
I was, in that moment, new; you were 19; I was 22;
you were impulsive; I was there in front of you, with a future
that hadn't yet been burned for fuel; I had energy;
you had beauty; and your eyes were a pale blue,
and they backed what you said with all they hadn't seen,
and they were the least ambitious eyes I'd known,
the least calculating, and when you spoke and when
they shone, perhaps you saw the feeling you caused.
Perhaps you saw too that the feeling would stay.

About This Poem

"I wrote this about a year after Barry Bonds broke Hank Aaron's career home-run record.  An idea for a Hank Aaron simile begat the poem; it lead to the memory of some fine feelings."
-Matthew Yeager

 

 

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Really weird:  Trump may use his own security
* Apparently, Trump snubbed Twitter because of a snit over a custom emoji
* Crazy:  Trump voters think blacks are better off than average Americans
* Trump might lose millions on DC Hotel sale (we can hope)
* What passes for sanity in a Trump voter
* A really neat app (if you use Twitter and read Trump's tweets and use Chrome or Firefox)
* Katrina vanden Heuvel:  Trump's fake populism
* Shaun King:  why I won't call Trump "President"
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Dec 25 Sun Merry Christmas!
 
Jan 1 Sun Happy New Year!
 
Jan 14 Sat ACLU Activist Academy, Boise (funding available for travel - must apply by Dec 28th)
 
Jan 19 Thurs Wake for Democracy (a special inauguration-eve Drinking Liberally
 
Feb 9-10 Thurs - Fri Banff Film Festival (no official DL meeting)
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

It's Ubiquitous

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, December 15th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn, formerly the Guesthouse Inn)
 

Today's cover of the Post Register, in all its male privilege

Black Lives Matter - there will be a gathering to replace the BLM banner at the Unitarian Universalist Church on Sunday, December 18th, from noon to 1pm.  We will walk it down to the greenbelt and back, then mount it on a new, sturdier structure.  Refreshments will be served.


Loved the photograph on today's Post Register lead story about a nursing program at BYU-I.  I doubt anyone at the paper bothered to think about what is troubling with this photo.

You should take some time to think about it.  Click on the picture above to get a full-sized version.


It's supposed to highlight an article about graduating nurses, and purports to be of nursing students in a simulation room at BYU-I.  Four women in the photo:  a simulated patient, a simulated visitor, and two nurses.  All are likely nursing students in the program, and all are looking up at the one man in the room, standing in the center, above the women.

Not great optics, there.

I assume he's an instructor in the program.  Which is another problem, when you think about it.  Shouldn't a program that has historically been populated by mostly women have a female instructor?  How much do you want to bet that both nursing administration and instruction are much more representative of the male half of the species than is the actual nursing profession as a whole?

This is exactly how we pretend that equality exists while we subtly reinforce gender stereotypes and male dominance.  And if we were better able to detect such examples, we would probably see them everywhere we looked.

I have come to believe that the most important reason for Clinton's Electoral College loss was not Russian hacking, or Comey's interference, or fake news, or overt racism on the part of Trump and his supporters.  The single most important reason for her loss - and about the least-covered reason, too - is outright sexism.

Join us this Thursday at the Bee's Knees to discuss this and other issues.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Poem of the Week

Making a Fist

We forget that we are all dead men conversing with dead men.
-Jorge Luis Borges

For the first time, on the road north of Tampico,
I felt the life sliding out of me,
a drum in the desert, harder and harder to hear.
I was seven, I lay in the car
watching palm trees swirl a sickening pattern past the glass.
My stomach was a melon split wide inside my skin.

"How do you know if you are going to die?"
I begged my mother.
We had been traveling for days.
With strange confidence she answered,
"When you can no longer make a fist."

Years later I smile to think of that journey,
the borders we must cross separately,
stamped with our unanswerable woes.
I who did not die, who am still living,
still lying in the backseat behind all my questions,
clenching and opening one small hand.

Naomi Shihab Nye

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Can we stop pretending that Trump is a populist now?
* Pizzagate - how fake news leads to bullets
* Price as head of HHS - loonier than you thought
* How Russian cyberpower invaded the US
* How Trump's business dealings jeopardize the US
* The right's version of PC culture:  Patriotic Correctness
* Trump harrassed an 18-yr-old woman on Twitter, leading to death threats
* Will the electors refuse to vote Trump?
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Dec 16 Fri IF City Club:  Dr Ken Krell and Rep Tom Loertscher, Idaho Medicaid Expansion, Will It Happen? (Bennion SUB, noon - 1:30pm)
 
Dec 18 Sun BLM Banner March - Unitarian Universalist Church, noon-1pm
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

So Bad We Can't Even Say

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, December 8th
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn, formerly the Guesthouse Inn)
 

Gotta say, it's the only pick that makes sense, no matter how sickening

News:  There is a new group in town that you may be interested in.  It's called the Idaho Falls Progressives.  They are having their next meeting this Saturday (IF Public Library, 2-3:30pm).  My understanding is that the group will be more action-oriented than is ours.  I think it's a great idea, and great for Idaho Falls.  I look forward to working together with them in our similar goals.


I've also heard that there will be an action to support the DAPL protesters on Saturday.  This is a last-minute thing, so I don't have the details.  If this is important to you, then look for information to come on Facebook.


Black Lives Matter - there will be a gathering to replace the BLM banner at the Unitarian Universalist Church on Sunday, December 18th, from noon to 1pm.  We will walk it down to the greenbelt and back, then mount it on a new, sturdier structure.  Refreshments will be served.



So I wrote a letter to the editor of the Post Register in response to another writer who encouraged us to pull together and support Trump for the good of the country.  Something about the calls for unity has been eating at me.  Not that I have it figured out.  I'm also somewhat conflicted - shouldn't we give Trump the best chance to be successful?

Whatever.  I'm not ready, and he isn't president yet.

Here's the original:

Editor,

Donald Trump's campaign of unprecedented dishonesty appealed to the worst Americans and to those suffering imaginary fears of losing their privilege. His policies were ludicrous when they were anything beyond unworkable, shallow talking points. He stoked all of the silly conspiracies that have been perpetuated by the GOP for the last 25 years. Most Americans were not duped by this obvious con man and self-promoting huckster.

But now America elected this disgusting creep who admits to sexually assaulting women. A shallow, whiny, man-child born into excessive wealth who compounded it by scamming the poor and gullible. A thin-skinned buffoon boasting pathological narcissism. An entertainer who adopted conservative policies and tactics because those folks are easily impressed. He's proving his unfitness for office daily, by appointing unqualified ideologues, and by continuing his criminal self-dealing with an unprecedented lack of transparency.

This is not a decent but incompetent, confused person like George W Bush, or a hapless buffoon like Ronald Reagan. Trump is a danger to America, and nothing will be gained by treating him like just another incompetent Republican.

Sorry, Jan Markowski (Letters, 11/23), but the cretin you voted for and championed with lies will do great harm to America. True patriots will fight Trump's ideas the entire way, until we can return someone to office who is as decent and competent as Hillary Clinton. Meanwhile, Trump will get as much respect as he displayed in the campaign, and as much as he showed President Obama during Trump's racist birther crusade.

Rejected.

Sure, it's harsh.  Especially the second paragraph.   That's actually the main sticking point.  Our Commentary Page editor feels like even if true, a comprehensive list of failings like that is insulting to people.

It's been through four revisions now, and I'm waiting to hear if the latest is acceptable.  The second paragraph now reads like so:

But now America elected this unqualified hedonist who admits to sexually assaulting women. The list of his failures as a human being would be too long and depressing to recount here. He's proving his unfitness for office daily, by appointing unqualified ideologues, by sowing worldwide instability with his false and ill-considered tweets, and by continuing his criminal self-dealing with an unprecedented lack of transparency.

We'll see how that goes.

Part of me sympathizes with the Post Register.  Covering this guy has got to present all kinds of new journalistic challenges.  It's not their fault that we elected one of the worst human beings imaginable.

But when a one-paragraph summary of his failures is too traumatic to print, what does that tell you?

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

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Quotations of the Week

Poem of the Week

My Grandmother's Grave

When my grandmother died
I thought, "She can't die again."
Everything in her life
happened once and forever:
her bed on our roof,
the battle of good and evil in her tales,
her black clothes,
her mourning for her daughter who
"was killed by headaches,"
the rosary beads and her murmur,
"Forgive us our sins,"
her empty vase from the Ottoman time,
her braid, each hair a history -

First were the Sumerians,
their dreams inscribed in clay tablets.
They drew palms, so dates ripen before their sorrows.
They drew an eye to chase evil
away from their city.
They drew circles and prayed for them:
a drop of water
a sun
a moon
a wheel spinning faster than Earth.
They begged:  "Oh gods, don't die and leave us alone."

Over the Tower of Babel,
light is exile,
blurred,
its codes crumbs of songs
leftover for the birds.

More naked emperors
passed by the Tigris
and more ships . . .
The river full
of crowns
helmets
books
dead fish,
and on the Euphrates, corpse-lilies floating.

Every minute a new hole in the body of the ship.

The clouds descended on us
war by war,
picked up our years,
our hanging gardens,
and flew away like storks.

We said there isn't any worse to come.

Then the barbarians came
to the mother of two springs.
They broke my grandmother's grave:  my clay tablet.
They smashed the winged bulls whose eyes
were sunflowers
widely open
watching the fragments of our first dreams
for a lifetime.

My hand on the map
as if on an old scar.

Dunya Mikhail

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * Why the GOP will need the Dem's help on Obamacare and Medicare repeal
* Excellent twitter rant about the pettiness of our PEOTUS
* The fierce women leading the march on Washington
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Dec 10 Sat Idaho Falls Progressives:  2-3:30pm, IF Public Library
 
Dec 16 Fri IF City Club:  Dr Ken Krell and Rep Tom Loertscher, Idaho Medicaid Expansion, Will It Happen? (Bennion SUB, noon - 1:30pm)
 
Dec 18 Sun BLM Banner March - Unitarian Universalist Church, noon-1pm
 

 

 

Thursday Night DL at the Bee's Knees

 

Piss Off

   Next meeting:
  Date Thursday, December 1st
Time 7 to 9pm (show up when you can)
Place Bee's Knees at 850 Lindsay Blvd (in the front of the FairBridge Inn, formerly the Guesthouse Inn)
 

Trump asked the press not to use unflattering pics
so DO NOT spread this around, whatever you do

News:  There is a new group in town that you may be interested in.  It's called the Idaho Falls Progressives.  They are having their second meeting this Wednesday (IF Public Library, 6:30pm).  My understanding is that the group will be more action-oriented than is ours.  I think it's a great idea, and great for Idaho Falls.  I look forward to working together with them in our similar goals.

Here's a proposed agenda for tomorrow:

Business (10 min)
   Leadership committee
   Mission Statement
   Facebook group administration
   Writers needed for "More of the Story" blog

Issue Discussion Part 1 & 2 (break into small groups & rotate after 20 min) (40 min total)
   Sanctuary city
   Electoral college changes
   Running for office
   Healthcare (including Medicaid expansion)
   Other

Debrief Issue Discussion (10 min)


Things to do to piss off Trump:

  • Give to Planned Parenthood, the ACLU, the SPLC, immigration rights groups, and any other organization that supports people and ideas that Trump has denounced or threatened
  • Help Idaho Falls become a sanctuary city
  • Downrate Trump properties in Yelp
  • Give his books scathing reviews on Amazon
  • Join the Democratic Party, and work for them
  • Do your part to support Trump piñata sales
  • If you ever get the chance, ask him when he plans to start MAGAing
  • Pester our legislators and ask them when they will investigate Trump's many illegal activities
  • Subscribe to the NYTimes and/or WaPo


I will likely get to the point where I can be polite to Trump voters, mostly.  But I cannot forgive Trump himself, or those who worked on his behalf.  I feel it is my patriotic duty and moral imparative to make the lives of those people as uncomfortable as possible over the next four years.  They thought they could lie and cheat their way into office, and now to use this scummy faux-win as a way to implement huge, damaging changes to our society?

They didn't act with honor, so treating them with respect at this point will only make their path easier.  I'm not participating.  I want them to suffer for their dishonesty, their corruption, and their immorality.

Got any other ideas?  Come to DL this week and share them.

Cheers,
Dan

 

Contact

Follow IFDrinkLib on Facebook     Follow IFDrinkLib on Twitter     Email me

 

Quotations of the Week

"If we want to have a white state or a white community or a white homeland, we should be able to have that.  We respect that for all people.  If we look at the NAACP, black people have the right to have that.  Why can't white people have a WAACP?"
- Preston Wiginton

 

"It is as though one were to debate with a potential murderer as to whether his future victim were dead or alive, completely forgetting that man can kill and that the murderer, by killing the person in question, could promptly provide proof of the correctness of this statement."
- Jamelle Bouie

 

"We've tried to do similar things to liberals.  It just has never worked, it never takes off.  You'll get debunked within the first two comments and then the whole thing just kind of fizzles out."
- Jestin Coler, fake news writer

 

Poem of the Week

Opportunity Costs

Thrushes, alert for opportunity,
sleep in winks of thirty seconds or less.

Has Guinness tracked the longest sigh on record
and was it exhaled in exasperation or ecstasy?

In the measure of apothecaries, one scruple
equals twenty grains, a lot of data to debunk.

Four centuries ago a watchmaker set up the first circus
of fleas tied to carts.  Since then,

entertainment has changed a lot—explosions, all the rage.
Not long ago whistling in an office could get you fired,

and now who of us blinks at torture taken to the brink
of drowning, not once per body, but a vomitous number

I'm not going to hurt you with, and who asks how often
mouth-to-mouth—the torturer locking lips with the tortured

to revive him for another round.  An alarm rings
to wake the thrush for the next

threat, thus serving the species for survival
of the fittest, while in the Situation Room, our best,

fit to kill, compute opportunity costs with the poise
of the guys whose billboards brag, "We buy ugly houses."

Give me the scale that weighs a whistle, a flea,
the song of a thrush, the sum of pain caused

by people of conscience, people ignoring it.
Is opportunity tired of being missed?

Does it sigh the way we sigh?

About This Poem

"This poem had many meanderings, until it finally declared itself to be this stern recounting of choices, and their consequences, moving from the past to the present, from animal to human, from innocence to immorality."
-Barbara Ras

 

 

links ... links ... Links ... LINKS ... LINKS!

  * No, Trump, we can't just get along
* Fascinating:  timeline of a fake news story
*  ... & a fake news writer describes his job
* Yglesias:  we need to stop Trump during transition
* Beutler:  Obama is warning us about Trump
* A regional example of what Trump's election means:  NYC may destroy immigrant ID database
* Looks like Trump will have to sell at least one hotel
* The truth about Trump's lies
* Kristof: 
a 12-step program for dealing with the election
* Trump's bad arguments, illustrated
* The whole email story, simply described
  * If you need more excellent linkage, check out Yankton or Pasadena

 

Schedule

       
Nov 30 Wed Idaho Falls Progressives:  6:30pm - 8pm, IF Public Library
 
Dec 4 Sun Last Soup Kitchen - join us from 11:30am - 2pm
 
Dec 16 Fri IF City Club:  Dr Ken Krell and Rep Tom Loertscher, Idaho Medicaid Expansion, Will It Happen? (Bennion SUB, noon - 1:30pm)