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      The Amazon goes, we go. This map doesn’t make it seem like it’s in danger, though it’s bad, but… So many #Climate emergencies worldwide, it’s hard to keep up. But #AmazonRainforest burning is stand-out global disaster. Every red dot below represents a significant fire pic.twitter.com/AZ6IaOO1Pv — John Gibbons (@think_or_swim) August 21, 2019 The Intercept ha […]
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Happy Hanukkah!

Tonight is the first night of Hanukkah. As Jewish holidays go, it’s not the most significant but it is seasonal in that like many religious holidays at this time of year, there is an emphasis on light. Wait, the date of Hanukkah is not based on the solar calendar, right? So, what does that mean? For answers to this and other burning questions about Hanukkah, let’s go to YouTube.

I found two topical videos on what Hanukkah is all about. The first is from the Christian perspective:

Hokay, moving right along.

These two know the whole story of Hanukkah and are inspired by Taylor Swift?

And that’s what Hanukkah is all about, Charlie Brown. I’ll bet you’ll be singing that tomorrow. I know I will.

Anyway, Happy Hanukkah to all my illuminated friends in Squirrel Hill.

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Who could have predicted??

I haven’t written much about the Cromnibus bill because it snuck up on us, didn’t it? It probably didn’t spring fully formed from the head of Zeus overnight. The various political movers and players had to have been working on it for some time, probably before the election. Nothing should be shocking anymore but I do admit to being surprised at how thoroughly the pension system has been undermined and how much ground the bankers have gained back. You would think that Democrats would have put up more of a fight because it’s not going to end well for a generation of people my age who played by the rules, lived within their means, paid in advance, and still got laid off and ripped off.

In any case, it was all pretty predictable back in 2008. Here’s one of my posts from May 2008 as we watched the party invite the vampires in and the level of peer pressure, vicious attacks on the Clintonista holdouts and accusations of racism directed at us reached a crescendo. I was not entirely correct about the result of these attacks on us. Back then, I thought there would be a backlash from the party faithful that got chucked overboard. There was but it was a very bad idea called the Tea Party. That was a waste. It’s only made things worse.

Note that we were pretty spot on about who had taken over the party.

Here’s the gist of it from Bird Brains, May 2008:

It looks like people higher up in the food chain are considering a protest vote as well. Taylor Marsh writes that even Geraldine Ferraro is disgusted. And, predictably, the accusations of political immaturity are not far behind.

Let me set the record straight for those of you who don’t understand where this is coming from (referring to a video link now lost). This DNC and the Obama campaign have conducted the campaign season as if they took lessons from the Enron boys from the movie, The Smartest Guys in the Room. There’s something distinctly unDemocratic about the whole thing. It doesn’t pass the smell test.  Cokie Roberts (of all people) mentioned it a couple of days ago. The process for picking a candidate is deeply flawed and *could* be easily manipulated to thwart rather than confirm the will of the people. It’s like the California deregulation plans that were just sitting there waiting for some clever traders to game the system for fun and profit at “granny’s” expense.

The system is flush with cash and one can almost imagine the operatives sitting at their monitors hearts pumping with adrenaline while they pull out all of the stops, reaching deep down into the modern American psyche in order to power play off all the weaknesses there that will result in a maximum payoff. Assertive women, men with hardhats, hillbilles, grannies ripe for rapping, gays and lesbians all provide targets for the aggressive young, male and pretentious to exercise their new social hierarchy. The level of viciousness is reaching a fever pitch.

Who is giving them permission to set aside their ethics and shuffle off the standards of acceptable behavior? Who is running the party that allows for the brutal suppression of one half by the unleashed id of the other half? I put the blame at the top of the party and Obama himself.

There is a price to be paid for such aggressive and insensitive behavior. People do have free will. The party belongs to the people who believe in its principles. Those principles of social justice, equality and shared responsibility can not be discarded for Change! without the party suffering some severe blows to its foundation. Going forward, the party becomes a fragile shell, easily blown to bits by outside forces because its foundations of support have been carelessly undermined.

This is where we are. The foundations of support, the people and principles that made the Democratic party viable and strong, are being callously destroyed by those who have been given permission to rig the system for one candidate over the other. Those of us who stayed with the party and our country through decades of movement conservatism, who volunteered our time and our voices, who suffered withering criticism and family divisions for not adopting Republican values, who protested the war, the attacks on science, the regression of women’s and GBLT progress in the public sphere, the subjugation of the working class have all been told that we’re not wanted anymore. Our party has evolved and we, like neanderthals, didn’t make the cut.

And Voila! The Cromnibus bill.

It’s not looking good. I don’t watch cable news. Katiebird does. She says the level of propaganda on MSNBC is just as bad as it is on Fox News. I’m glad I’m missing it.

No, I don’t think Elizabeth Warren can save us.  We’re going to have to save ourselves, from ourselves.