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Re: Quickies


I've just turned on the TV and am getting caught up on how things are this morning. MSNBC had a crawl quoting somebody who said there are parts of the Texas coast that may be uninhabitable for weeks or even months.

Good God!

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Robbie
8/26/2017, 9:18 am Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Quickies


Oh, man.... I haven't had the TV on since about 5:30 this morning. I did see the prediction about uninhabitability for weeks, and that the thing may go back out into the gulf and go into Houston. But months? And New Orleans? Nonononono....

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Just one voice.... Singing in the darkness....
8/26/2017, 11:49 pm Link to this post PM JustLis
 
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Re: Quickies


I have two sets of friends in the path of the storm: one couple north of Austin, and another couple who live just outside of College Station.

I have emailed both couples, and haven't heard back.

I did see one sign painted on a boarded-up house that made me smile, though:

"Go HOME, Harvey! You are DRUNK!" emoticon
8/27/2017, 1:11 pm Link to this post PM MsSusieQueue
 
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Re: Quickies


Great sign, Susie!

(You have to be the Susie Marcus Bales wrote the poem about on the second page of the rumpus room. Is he still on the board?)

Last edited by Bellelettres, 8/27/2017, 1:24 pm
8/27/2017, 1:22 pm Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Quickies


Marcus dates back to the old TOL board but rarely graces us here any longer.

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8/27/2017, 1:42 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Quickies


That's too bad. He's really witty.
8/27/2017, 2:09 pm Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Quickies


Whaddya think, guys? Should Hurricane Harvey have its own thread?

The destruction is beyond imagining.

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8/27/2017, 2:15 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Quickies


quote:

Bellelettres wrote:

Great sign, Susie!

(You have to be the Susie Marcus Bales wrote the poem about on the second page of the rumpus room. Is he still on the board?)



Yep. That would be me. I, too, harken back to the old TOL days. Must be 20 years or so ago.

And I agree Marcus is a clever fellow.
8/27/2017, 2:15 pm Link to this post PM MsSusieQueue
 
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Re: Quickies


(Does this belong here, Robbie?)

Why violinist Glen Donnelly jumped out of a plane naked playing ‘The Lark Ascending’

By Rachel Chason September 1 at 6:34 AM

As the Australian musician hurtled out of a plane 15,000 feet above land, he cradled a violin on his shoulder. During his 60-second free fall through a clear blue sky on Sunday, Glen Donnelly, who turned 30 that day, played himself “Happy Birthday.”

The hairs of his bow started to come undone, waving wildly in the wind at high altitude. Donnelly — who played professionally with the London Symphony Orchestra — kept performing. As his parachute opened, he played, with a few stops and starts, “The Lark Ascending” by Ralph Vaughan Williams.

“Why am I doing this,” Donnelly had said earlier, as the skydiving plane ascended high above the ocean and white sands of Coffs Harbour north of Sydney.

“I’m insane.”

Had any casual onlookers been watching the descent, they might have agreed.
After all, who plays a violin free falling at 15,000 feet (albeit strapped to his instructor)?

And who does it naked, but for the harness?

Of course, it was a publicity stunt. But it was for a good cause.

By skydiving nude, Donnelly says he sought to raise money and awareness about body image, with which he has long struggled. He says his issues eventually caused a breakdown that forced him to leave the London Symphony Orchestra.

Too few people, he said, are willing to talk about body image issues and eating disorders among men. A naked violin performance given while skydiving, he hoped, would begin to change that.

“It’s all about accepting yourself,” he said in a video, squinting into the sun on the beach after the jump. “It’s okay to feel fear. It’s okay to feel shame.
It’s okay to feel anxiety. The first step is just to accept it, then you can heal it.”

With the performance came publicity — including many interviews with local stations and several with the BBC. Not everyone has taken Donnelly’s quest as seriously as he would like.

“Which bit landed first,” Lisa Wilkinson asked on the Australian breakfast television program, “Today.”

“Hey, how well did you know the instructor,” her co-host asked. “It’s a tandem skydive, so you wanted to have a little bit of confidence in your relationship together, didn’t you.”

Then they cut Donnelly off mid-answer, joking about whether he had “his hands on the baguette” as he fell.

Donnelly, who laughed nervously during the interview, said the next time someone treats him rudely, he plans to walk off the set. But he won’t be dissuaded by his detractors. What matters, he says, is translating the publicity into dollars for his cause.

That’s been a little disappointing, too.
Despite the vast worldwide publicity generated by his jump, he has only raised $3,500 of his $15,000 goal. He wanted to raise $1 for every foot he fell for the benefit of organizations focused on men’s body image issues.

“Men feel this stigma and shame about speaking out,” he told The Washington Post on Thursday. “This is a cultural problem where we are suffering in silence.”

For Donnelly, that silent suffering began years ago. Raised in a conservative Christian household in Gosford, north of Sydney, he says he grew up with “a dysfunctional relationship with achievement.” At 8, he started playing the violin, determined to be the best in the world.

That desire came with anxiety, and that anxiety worsened when Donnelly turned 16 and noticed he had gained weight after a growth spurt.

“My belly got rounder and rounder, and I was developing emotional eating to deal with social anxieties,” Donnelly says.
“Things got worse and worse.”

He constantly sucked in his stomach and was always looking in the mirror, worried about how others viewed him. His violin playing suffered because of the mental and physical anxiety that came with the body image anxiety, which he now believes was a body dysmorphic disorder.

The “breaking point,” he said, came in 2013, when he was playing with London Symphony Orchestra after six years of studying at the Royal Academy of Music in London. He says he could feel his body locking up during performances because of his “debilitating self-consciousness.”

“The anxiety had snowballed for 10 years, and I realized then that I didn’t want to be a musician anymore,” he said.

He returned home, where he started eating healthier, practicing mindfulness and experimenting with nudism. The first time he got naked in public was at a nude beach. He realized then that he had finally stopped sucking in his stomach.

“Going nude was like chucking myself into the deep end,” he said. “It forced me to confront my anxiety, and I loved it.”

But Donnelly’s personal journey over the last four years, which included coming out as bisexual and starting “The Nude Movement,” a social media campaign to promote nudism, hasn’t been without its challenges. Donnelly’s parents, he says, have struggled to accept the changes.

“I have changed my culture completely, and that’s been very hard for them,” he says. “They love me, and I respect them and try to have a love there. But I knew that when I came back from London it was life or death, and I had to completely change my life.”

Nude skydiving was his admittedly dramatic show of just how much he’s changed, and how far he’s willing to go to break down the stigma for others.

In the process, he also hoped to break a Guinness World Record for “Highest Musical Performance in Free Fall.” That didn’t go so well either. Guinness wouldn’t even consider his application, explaining:

“While we certainly do not underestimate your proposal, we think that it is a little too specialized for a body of reference as general as Guinness World Records,” the company responded to Donnelly in a July 1 email.

But Donnelly, who was eight weeks away from his dive at the time, wasn’t ready to admit defeat. He said given that Guinness has records for “Most Smarties/M & Ms eaten in one minute blindfolded using chopsticks,” he thought he might be able to convince the company to change its mind.

Guinness was unmoved.

“Thanks for providing video examples,” a representative wrote. “Regrettably ‘uniqueness’ is not objectively quantifiable and cannot therefore form the basis of a world record.”

“Guinness World Records” was Donnelly’s favorite book growing up. But the excuses for not accepting his application, he says “are really silly.”

“There seems to be a clear bias against naked people setting world records,” he said.

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9/1/2017, 7:13 am Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Quickies


quote:

Bellelettres wrote:

(Does this belong here, Robbie?)




Yep, perfect. Thanks, Belle.

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9/1/2017, 9:31 am Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Obama team’s 2020 signals spark chatter among Dems


Here we go.

quote:

Democrats are expressing concern that advisers and aides to former President Obama have already begun signaling which candidate they might support for the White House in 2020.

Valerie Jarrett, one of Obama’s closest confidantes, and David Simas, the CEO of Obama’s foundation, have sent smoke signals urging former Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) to enter the race.

Simas, who once served as a top aide to Patrick, is an ardent supporter of the former governor, sources tell The Hill, while Jarrett has privately told friends that she would do what it takes to support him.

And Politico reported last month that Jarrett believes a President Patrick is “what my heart desires.”

At the same time, friends of Jarrett’s say that while she would love for Patrick to run, she is also open to other candidates.

Others in Obamaworld have quietly been buzzing about the excitement behind a potential Patrick run.

Axios's Mike Allen mentioned Patrick as a favorite in Obamaworld in his popular newsletter on Friday.

Other former aides close to Obama say they would support a run by former Vice President Joe Biden, if he decides to launch a bid in 2020.

Obama has not weighed in publicly on the next presidential race, and those around him have said he isn’t looking to tip the scales and believes it is too early to back any one candidate.



]Read more here.

Good comment on the track record of Party insiders. I don't see anyone mentioned that warms my cockles, and the idea of carrying on the Obama legacy doesn't appeal to me. It may be time to write in my ex-wife again in 2020.
9/3/2017, 9:50 am Link to this post PM CooterBrown44
 
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Skeezy bastard



Trump has decided to end DACA, with 6-month delay

Senior White House aides met Sunday afternoon to discuss how to roll out the controversial move affecting hundreds of thousands of Dreamers.

By ELIANA JOHNSON 09/03/2017 08:21 PM EDT Updated 09/03/2017 08:25 PM EDT


President Donald Trump has decided to end the Obama-era program that grants work permits to undocumented immigrants who arrived in the country as children, according to two sources familiar with his thinking. Senior White House aides huddled Sunday afternoon to discuss the rollout of a decision likely to ignite a political firestorm — and fulfill one of the president’s core campaign promises.

Trump has wrestled for months with whether to do away with the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, known as DACA. He has faced strong warnings from members of his own party not to scrap the program and struggled with his own misgivings about targeting minors for deportation.

Conversations with Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who argued that Congress — rather than the executive branch — is responsible for writing immigration law, helped persuade the president to terminate the program, the two sources said, though White House aides caution that — as with everything in the Trump White House — nothing is set in stone until an official announcement has been made.

In a nod to reservations held by many lawmakers, the White House plans to delay the enforcement of the president’s decision for six months, giving Congress a window to act, according to one White House official. But a senior White House aide said that chief of staff John Kelly, who has been running the West Wing policy process on the issue, “thinks Congress should’ve gotten its act together a lot longer ago.”

Trump is expected to announce his decision on Tuesday, and the White House informed House Speaker Paul Ryan of the president’s decision on Sunday morning, according to a source close to the administration. Ryan had said during a radio interview on Friday that he didn’t think the president should terminate DACA, and that Congress should act on the issue.

Neither the White House not a spokesman for Ryan immediately responded to requests for comment.
The president’s expected announcement is likely to shore up his base, which rallied behind his broader campaign message about the importance of enforcing the country’s immigration laws and securing the border. At the same time, the president’s decision is likely to be one of the most contentious of his early administration, opposed by leaders of both parties and by the political establishment more broadly.

The White House and Congress have tried to pass the issue off on each other – with each arguing that the other is responsible for determining the fate of the approximately 800,000 undocumented immigrants who are benefiting from DACA. Though most Republicans believe that rolling back DACA is a solid legal decision, they are conscious of the difficult emotional terrain. Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch joined Ryan in cautioning Trump against rolling back the program.

The president is likely to couch his decision in legalese. Many on the right, even those who support protections for children brought into the country illegally through no fault of their own, argue that DACA is unconstitutional because former President Barack Obama carried it out unilaterally instead of working through Congress.

Some Republican lawmakers, including Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, have said that Congress needs to pass a law to protect the so-called Dreamers.

“My hope is that as part of this process we can work on a way to deal with this issue and solve it through legislation, which is the right way to do it and the constitutional way to do it,” Rubio told CNN in June.
Trump’s expected decision to scrap DACA represents another challenge for Ryan and fellow congressional Republicans, who are facing an end-of-September deadline to avert a government shutdown and government debt default, while also tackling a Hurricane Harvey relief package and a major tax reform push.

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9/3/2017, 8:30 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Quickies


I agree that the Congress should get off of its rear end and address this among a number or other things.
9/3/2017, 10:25 pm Link to this post PM CooterBrown44
 
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Re: Quickies


quote:

CooterBrown44 wrote:

I agree that the Congress should get off of its rear end and address this among a number or other things.



Yes, they should. Now, watch the Freedom Party throw tantrums.

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9/3/2017, 10:41 pm Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Who started Labor Day?


Go, union!

Who started Labor Day? The bloody and confusing history of an American holiday.

By Rachel Siegel September 4 at 6:00 AM

The act making Labor Day a federal holiday spared few words when it was signed into law on June 28, 1894. Above the scripted signatures of President Grover Cleveland, the speaker of the House and the vice president, the 83-word law declared that the first Monday of September be “the day celebrated and known as Labor’s Holiday.”

The paragraph does little to suggest the decades of confusion that would swirl around the holiday’s origins, Cleveland’s role in its creation or the blood spilled along the way. Labor leaders with similar names spawned much debate as to who was the holiday’s true founder, and the caretaker of the nation’s leading Cleveland museum insists that the president’s signing of the law was not the politically motivated gesture widely reported ever since.

The first Labor Day celebrations took place more than a decade before it became a federal holiday. Many sources point to Peter J. McGuire — founder of the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America and an early leader of the American Federation of Labor — who suggested the celebration to the Central Labor Union of New York as the holiday’s progenitor. Others claim that Matthew Maguire, secretary of the Central Labor Union, proposed the holiday.

On Sept. 5, 1882, the first parade launched in lower Manhattan. A band played “When I First Put This Uniform On,” from “Patience,” a comic opera by Gilbert and Sullivan. According to the U.S. Department of Labor, the total number of marchers ranged from 10,000 to 20,000. The New York Tribune reported that “the windows and roofs and even the lamp posts and awning frames were occupied by persons anxious to get a good view of the first parade in New York of workingmen of all trades united in one organization.” Nearly 25,000 union members and their families celebrated in a post-parade party at Wendel’s Elm Park at 92nd Street and 9th Avenue.

From 1887 to 1894, 23 states passed Labor Day laws. Oregon was the first, followed by Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York. Then came its recognition as a federal holiday.

The passage of Labor Day legislation was not a priority of Cleveland’s presidency, said Sharon Farrell, caretaker of the Grover Cleveland Birthplace in Caldwell, N.J. Rather, legislation had already been making its way through Congress and did not hinge on Cleveland’s final signature, she said.

“He was not the driving force behind it, and it was not his idea,” Farrell said. “He just happened to be the president sitting in the chair.”

Farrell’s argument challenges a widely held belief that Cleveland rushed the legislation through in the midst of one of his presidency’s most fraught moments: the Pullman Strike. In an essay titled “The Government in the Chicago Strike of 1894,” Cleveland wrote that a “very determined and ugly labor disturbance broke out in the city of Chicago.”

“Almost in a night it grew to full proportions of malevolence and danger,” he wrote. “Rioting and violence were its early accompaniments; and it spread so swiftly that within a few days it had reached nearly the entire Western and Southwestern sections of our county.”

The railroad strike and boycott lasted May 11 to July 20, 1894, disrupting rail traffic for much of that summer. In response to the economic depression that began in 1893, the Pullman Palace Car Company, which manufactured railroad cars, cut the wages of its workers 25 percent. A group of workers tried to address their grievances with company president George M. Pullman, but he refused to meet with them and ordered them fired. A delegation of workers then voted to strike, marching out of work on May 11.

Thirty-five percent of Pullman workers were represented by the American Railway Union at the time of the strike. The workers believed the union would back the strike, but it wasn’t clear exactly how, because the Pullman workers did not directly work on the railroads.

The union ultimately refused to handle Pullman cars or trains with Pullman cars until the railroads cut ties with the Pullman Company. Union president and future Socialist presidential candidate Eugene V. Debs knew that the support of switchmen would be key to the boycott’s success: If switchmen stopped adding or removing Pullman cars from trains, the railroads would replace them with nonunion workers and prompt more union members to walk out.

By the end of June, 125,000 workers on 29 railroads quit rather than handle Pullman cars. But Debs worried about the potential for the workers’ anger to lead to violence. As he predicted, a crowd following a June 29 speech acted out, setting buildings on fire and derailing a locomotive that was attached to a U.S. mail train.

Cleveland — who had also received reports of goods rotting in rail yards and cattle dying from the heat — was not pleased.
Illinois Gov. John Peter Altgeld had already dispatched militia companies to quell rioting. U.S. Attorney General Richard Olney urged federal troops go into Chicago to stop the “reign of terror.” On July 2, he obtained an injunction that barred union leaders from compelling employees of the railroads “to refuse or fail to perform any of their duties.”

Cleveland ordered troops into Chicago on July 3, much to the frustration of Altgeld, who thought his state militias had a handle on the situation. Strikers acted out against the troops, overturning rail cars and erecting barricades at the rail yards. On July 6, roughly 6,000 rioters destroyed hundreds of rail cars in the South Chicago Panhandle yards.
But even the 6,000 federal and state troops, 3,100 police officers and 5,000 deputy marshals in Chicago could not suppress the violence. National Guardsmen fired into a mob July 7, killing as many as 30 people and wounding others. Gradually the strike ended and trains resumed their normal schedules, and federal troops were pulled out July 20.

Historians, encyclopedias and news articles pinpoint Cleveland’s actions during the Pullman Strike as his reason for rushing the Labor Day Act through Congress that June. People were dead on the streets of Chicago, and the creation of a holiday would help make up for it. These reports also claim the law was passed to court votes ahead of the 1896 election, to no avail. In this version of history, Cleveland was rejected by his party, and the Democratic nomination went to the great orator William Jennings Bryan. Republican William McKinley ultimately won the presidency.

But Farrell, the Cleveland expert and museum caretaker, said the law’s timing was not politically motivated. Cleveland, who had already served two terms, had no intention of running for reelection, she said. She called the alleged connection between Labor Day and Cleveland’s political future “completely misguided.”

After Cleveland signed the law, the Morning Call of Paterson, N.J., published an editorial titled “Honor to Whom Honor is Due,” according to the New Jersey Historical Society. The piece argued that Matthew Maguire was the undisputed founder of the holiday.

More than a century later, it seems the question of “to whom honor is due” is still up for debate.

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9/4/2017, 7:46 am Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Quickies


September 4, 2017 / 2:25 AM / 4 hours ago

UK's Prince William and wife Kate expecting third child

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain’s Prince William and his wife Kate are expecting their third child, their office said on Monday after the Duchess was forced to cancel an engagement due to severe morning sickness.

The baby will be fifth in line to the British throne, after grandfather Prince Charles, father William and elder siblings George, 4, and Charlotte, 2.

The couple, who released the news via their office at Kensington Palace, did not say when the baby was due.

“The Queen and members of both families are delighted with the news,” the palace said.

Britain’s monarchy has ridden a wave of public support in recent years due to the emergence of the younger royals, William, Kate and William’s brother Harry.

Kate and William married in a lavish ceremony in 2011 watched by about two billion people around the world. Two years later the international camera crews and photographers camped outside a London hospital to record the birth of George, and returned two years later for his sister Charlotte.

George and Charlotte have since appeared on the front covers of magazines around the world and traveled on official royal tours of Poland and Germany with their parents.

“This is fantastic news,” British Prime Minister Theresa May said. “Many congratulations to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.”

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9/4/2017, 10:02 am Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Quickies


I don't blame William for having plenty of kids. emoticon
9/4/2017, 10:10 am Link to this post PM CooterBrown44
 
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Re: Quickies


Do you all think the monarchy should be abolished? Of what value is it to England now that Shakespeare is not writing plays for Elizabeth?
9/4/2017, 10:14 am Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 
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Re: Quickies


I think it is utterly none of my business whether the UK should keep the monarchy. They seem to like it.

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9/4/2017, 10:17 am Link to this post PM Miz Robbie
 
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Re: Quickies


A poll of Britons in 2015 showed that 71 percent support the monarchy and 18 think there should be an elected head of state. This is interesting, because 68 percent think the monarchy is good for Britain, and 9 percent think it is bad, with 17 percent saying it is neither good nor bad. (So some of that 17 percent support it anyway?)

62 percent think the monarchy will still be there in 100 years, and 23 percent think it won't.

The monarchy certainly gives Britons (the whole world for that matter) something to gossip about, the way our movie stars do for us and the whole world. When I was a child, I had pictures of Elizabeth and Margaret, the little princesses, and pictures of the Dionne quintuplets. Are any of you old enough to reember the Dionne quintuplets? I wonder where they are now.

American women fell in love with Philip when he was courting Elizabeth. (He turned out to be a womanizer, according to Paul Theroux.) What American woman didn't want Margaret to marry Captain Townsend, even though he was divorced. Does anyone remember how our feathers fell when she announced that she wouldn't marry him?
9/4/2017, 11:02 am Link to this post PM Bellelettres
 


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