August rambling: personality cult

The 2030 Census

Guns and reproductive system
Original source unknown

“Unite the Right” five years later

Secret Service Held Onto Violent Jan. 6 Threat Against Pelosi

Governing Party vs. Personality Cult

djt: His Alleged Crimes at CRIME-A-LAGO and THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO ALL THE WAYS HE IS LEGALLY SCREWED, and his discarding and hoarding of documents just might be pathological

The FBI Confirms Its Brett Kavanaugh Investigation Was a Total Sham

Let’s Hear From the Women Lis Smith Smeared. The political operative who covered for Cuomo is on a comeback tour, trying to paper over the damage she caused.

Correcting Misinformation About Dr. Fauci

Poll Finds 3 in 4 Voters Want to Expand Social Security by Taxing The Rich

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Afghanistan and Carbon Offsets 

Most victims of the global problem of out-of-control militarism don’t get the same attention from the Western press.

Is This The Moment For A Third Political Party?

The 10 Things That All Flat Earthers Say

Mr. Brunelle: quiet quitting and new Florida teachers

Census and more

Census: Post-Enumeration Surveys and Bureau Invites Public Input on Designing 2030 Census, and Bureau Must Ensure the Next Census Deploys the Highest Quality Science

Average Lifespan Of Residents In Each US State,

Federal and State Agencies to Notify of a Name Change

Salem Witch Trial Victim Exonerated After 329 Years

Was King Arthur a Real Person?

Should Christians Listen to Explicit Music?

Frederick Buechner, popular Christian ‘writer’s writer’ and ‘minister’s minister,’ dies at 96

Len Dawson, Kansas City Chiefs quarterback and broadcasting legend, dies at 87

Ken Levine remembers Vin Scully 

Cross-Pollinating for the Collective

Kelly’s eclectic linkage

Jodi Balfour on the Importance of Her Coming Out on ‘For All Mankind’

14 Notorious Movies and TV Shows That Have Never Been Released

Academy Apologizes to Sacheen Littlefeather for Her Mistreatment At the 1973 Oscars

Capitol Records Severs Ties With A.I. Rapper FN Meka, Apologizes to Black Community for “Insensitivity”

Steve Martin on His Late Career Surge; he plays well with others

Now I Know: The Musician Whose Big Break Was a Broken Instrument and Münchausen by Internet and Why U-Hauls Pretend to be From Arizona and  Why Barber’s Poles Have All Those Stripes and How to Get Supplies to an Underwater Laboratory

Student debt

President Biden’s announcement on student debt cancellation generated a lot of conversation. Some believe the $10,000 forgiveness was far too little, while others bemoaned doing so at all. A Facebook comment by Kelly Sedinger resonated with me.

“Nothing illustrates our society’s abdication of the notion of leaving a better world for our children than we ourselves received than (a) creating an economy where higher education is almost a requirement to succeed at any level of comfort, (b) making said education wildly expensive, to the point that virtually no one can afford it out of pocket, (c) thus requiring a system of financing that applies higher-than-they-should-be interest rates and making that debt unable to be dissolved in bankruptcy, and finally (d) freaking out at forgiving some of that debt.”

Mark Evanier added:  “A lot of folks who are fine with your, my and their tax dollars going to very, very rich people sure get upset when that money goes to people who are not very, very rich.

MUSIC

Lock Him Up Yesterday – Randy Rainbow

I Hope So – Katrina Stone

Coverville 1411: The Jethro Tull Cover Story

Javelin by Michael Torke.

Let It Be – Peter Sprague,  featuring Rebecca Jade

Apotheosis of this Earth by Karel Husa

Shattered Memories – Michał Łapaj (feat. Mick Moss)

I’ve Just Seen A Face – Peter Sprague, featuring Rebecca Jade

Home Grown – Booker T and The MG’s (stereo)

Morning, Noon, and Night in Vienna – Franz Von Suppe’

Nov. rambling: down the rabbit hole

ancient board games

too-on-point
From https://wronghands1.com/2021/11/12/too-on-point/

Does the red pill have an antidote? Why do previously reasonable people go down the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories, and what can be done to bring them back?

The vaccine tore her family apart. Could a death bring them back together?

Pharmaceutical messianism and the COVID-19 pandemic

Why WHO skipped ‘nu,’ ‘xi’ for the new COVID variant, omicron

Trump believed his press secretary when she told him he’d win ‘because’ of COVID

Nations Fiddle While the Earth Burns (and Floods)

Time’s Up– IT’S THE END OF THE WORLD, AND WE KNOW IT

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver – Union Busting and The Power Grid 

 Wealthy Americans get paid leave. Shouldn’t the rest?

The scary rise of private intelligence companies 

What your smart devices know (and share) about you

 Public-Private Partnerships Are Quietly Hollowing Out Our Public Libraries 

Parents are scrambling after schools suddenly cancel class over staffing and burnout. (It’s happened at least twice in Albany this fall.)

To Catch a Turtle Thief: Blowing the Lid Off an International Smuggling Operation

An Extraordinary 500-Year-Old Shipwreck Is Rewriting the History of the Age of Discovery

Land Back and The Third Reconstruction: A Truth Commission with the Shinnecock Nation 

Can a Doughnut Heal Our World?

Culture

etymologyAn Indigenous chef is putting her heritage on the menu with landmark restaurant 

French dictionary adds non-binary pronoun

Sesame Street debuts Asian-American muppet

Lee Elder, first Black golfer to play in Masters, dies at age 87

How to wake up early, even if you’re not a morning person

The link to Friends and Foundation of the Albany Public Library book talks 

Some People Can Literally See Time 

Your 2 Step Guide To Creating Mindfulness Gratitude Practice

Ancient Board Games, even more ancient than I am

Ken Levine’s 250th podcast: For Those Who Love Lucy

David Brickman and Stanley Tucci are not the same person

RIP, laugh track 

The Love Boat video shows every single guest in alphabetical order.

Now I Know:  What Does the Fox Spray? and How Ben Franklin Killed the Competition and The Boy Who Shared His Wish and  The Somewhat-Fake Sausage That Saved Lives

Heart-pulling Christmas commercials

MUSIC

How Great Thou Art, performed by Carla Fisk

A Pile Of Dust – Voces8

Fanny Mendelssohn 

Peter Sprague Plays Miles Davis

Romanian Rhapsody #2 by Georges Enescu

Come A Little Bit Closer – Jay and the Americans

Barnyard Boogie – From Acoustic Rooster’s Barnyard Boogie: Starring Indigo Blume

Overture to Prince Igor by Alexander Borodin

Future Past (Visualizer) – Duran Duran

Symphony No. 3 by Aram Khachaturian

J. Eric Smith: Be Thankful for What You’ve Got

Latke Recipe – the Maccabeats

Coverville 1379: Cover Stories for Lorde and Taylor (Swift) and 1380: Covering the 2021 Inductees into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft – Carpenters

May rambling: food and death

100 years since Tulsa, and one since George Floyd

vaccinated_2x
From https://xkcd.com/2460/

I’ve been thinking a lot about food and death. NOT death caused by food poisoning.

At my FIL’s funeral this month, someone told a story about how my parents-in-law met. They were both students at what is now UAlbany. She was a food server, he made deliveries of supplies. He came into the dining area, just as she was about to eat her fried egg sandwich. Instead, she offered it to him.

The next week, they went to the movies together. They lived happily for many years. It is a sweet story, but the telling was incomplete. The kicker is that he HATED fried egg sandwiches, but he ate it anyway.

My wife has discovered there were foods that were always in her parents’ house. One staple was spaghetti and meatballs. As it turns out, she HATES spaghetti and meatballs, but he liked them, so she served them. Now my wife has stopped buying them for her.

Arthur tells of taste obsessions and his late husband Nigel.

Some links

Generally, I have no energy for the Big Lie believers or the January 6 deniers who say those insurrectionists were tourists, blocking an investigation. But if Chuck wants to rant about Marjorie Taylor Greene – she’s beyond reprehensible.

Why Liz Cheney Matters.

We’ll Never Stop Trying to Cut Taxes for the Rich, Republicans Warn.

John Oliver: Stand Your Ground gun laws “exalt a white person’s fear over a black person’s life.” Also, sponsored product on the local news broadcasts.

I, too, rage America.

Avoiding Overtaxing Minorities When We Need Them Most.

100 Years: Remembering the Tulsa Race Massacre, which I wrote about here

What to make of Israel/Palestine?

Wage theft is a huge problem that requires a creative solution.

Restaurant Workers Say They Won’t Return to Work Without a Living Wage

If your compassion does not include yourself, it is incomplete.
– Jack Kornfield

And more

Working 55 hours a week can be deadly.

The Problem With Bitcoin

Comics writer and journalist David Anthony Kraft passed away.

In honor of Ms. Ruby Hughes.

Adam Ragusea on converting recipes in liters and milliliters to pounds and ounces, and Vidalia Onions.

It’s going to rain. Can you smell it?

How to Conduct an Address Search to Access Data for your Location. Census Reporter is an option to find your block group, state and Congressional districts, and more.

Why you need to have your ancestor’s New York death certificate.

The filing cabinet was critical to the information infrastructure of the 20th-century.

Are you getting robocalls purportedly – and clearly not – from the Social Security Administration saying your number has been compromised? I’ve gotten a few dozen on my landline and my cell this year, from several area codes, mostly the 30-second version. Annoying, but also really pathetic.

Now I Know: The Forest Man of India and How Elephants Communicate From Miles Away and The Circle of Life and The Secret Ingredient is Curiosity and The Reason Florida Disavowed Space Oranges.

Music

Spring Ain’t Here – Peter Sprague, featuring Rebecca Jade.

Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door – Afro Fiesta feat. Twanguero and I-Taweh.

Main themes from Laputa: Castle in the Sky – Joe Hisaishi.

Coverville 1358: Cover Stories for Dave Mason, Donovan, and Graham Gouldman.

Danse slav from the opera The Reluctant King by Emmanuel Chabrier.

We Love the Drums – Peter Sprague, featuring Duncan Moore.

I Fought the Law – Bobby Fuller Four.

The Hamilton Polka – “Weird Al” Yankovic.

May rambling: Goblet of Empathy

Digital divide, and the home appraisal gap

vaccine_guidance
From https://xkcd.com/2434/

“Police are investigating a threat of violence directed at a local cocktail lounge after its owner announced that he will require proof of coronavirus vaccination before admitting patrons when the bar reopens next weekend. Matt Baumgartner said that in less than four hours Thursday afternoon he received more than 100 messages via phone, email, and social media, nearly all sharply critical of the stance. Some threatened boycotts, others vandalism, and one threatened violence. ”

I’d be MORE inclined to go there myself. Boycott if they want, but why are some people threatening his right to run his business as he pleases?

Mitch McConnell admits he is fully committed to blocking everything. He said the same thing in 2010.

Biden’s Great Economic Rebalancing.

The Reagan Era is Finally Over.

Anti-Black Police Violence Constitutes Crimes Against Humanity and They Were Sons.

11 Moments From Asian American History That You Should Know.

Gallup: Does Capitalism Need a Soul Transplant?

Red States Crack Down on Protests.

Tucker Carlson Is Emblematic of Today’s Republican Party.

The Baby Bump That Wasn’t.

Marital Histories Differ Between Native-Born and Foreign-Born Adults.

You Won’t Need a Real ID Until 2023.

Why Going to the Doctor Sucks.

I’m good with an Excelsior Wallet, proof of having been vaccinated against COVID-19.

Chart from the CDC: Choosing Safer Activities.

What is the digital divide?

How the home appraisal gap makes homeownership more difficult and costly for Black families.

Aaron Mair: The Problem With Climate Havens.

There is no remedy for love but to love more.
-Henry David Thoreau

Disney  Must Pay!

Living With the Sackler Name.

Hair: Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

‘Street Gang’ Director Marilyn Agrelo On All The Secrets She Learned About Sesame Street.

Olympia Dukakis, Academy Award-winning actress, dies at 89.

How My Ex-Husband Became One of My Best Friends.

And more

Beavers Wipe Out Town’s Internet.

Did This Man Have the Longest Name of the 20th Century?

LEGOLAND NY prepares to open.

Belgian farmer accidentally moves French border.

Not me: “They (People in low vaccinated areas) felt they were being overlooked and neglected,” said Roger Green Sr., the pastor at Mt. Zion. “What we have done is brought it to their front door.”.

Not me: Kent tokens dropped by traders fleeing the Great Fire of London could fetch thousands. Roger Green, who is originally from Kent, spent 35 years collecting the tokens along the muddy banks of the River Thames.

Now I Know: The Trees That Rock and When Foxes Flew (Against Their Will) and Four Weddings and Divorce or Three and The Road Repair That Broke Science and Harvard Versus Hard Knocks and The Other Side of Midnight and More Accurately, He Was The Hamburglar and There’s No Such Thing As a Lot of Free Pennies and Harry Potter and the Goblet of Empathy.

Love isn’t a state of perfect caring. It is an active noun like ‘struggle.’
Fred Rogers

MUSIC

Take a minute to listen to Prelude No. 16 in B-flat minor, opus 28, for solo piano by Chopin.

Clang, Clang, Clang Went Josh Hawley! – A Randy Rainbow Song Parody.

Iko Iko – Song Around the World.

It’s For You – Peter Sprague, featuring Rebecca Jade.

We Need To Get Past Covid – Shelly Goldstein.

Rob Roy Overture by Hector Berlioz.

LOUBOUTINS 2.0 – Aubrey Logan.

R.I.P., Jim Steinman.

It’s All Coming Back To Me Now – Celine Dion.

So This Is Love – Peter Sprague, featuring Sinne Eeg.

I Love NY medley.

Our Town suite by Aaron Copland.

For Good – Chenowith, and Menzel.

Coverville 1357: Cover Stories for Lesley Gore and Robert Johnson.

Both Sides Now – the MonaLisa Twins.

Willie Nelson.

Jeepers Creepers – Julian Neel.

Many more Flintstones versions

The women of jazz fought racism and sexism to open doors for their sisters.

Roberta Flack – her musical gift to us has spanned more than 5 decades.

Songs that use augmented chords.

Music in the time of COVID, 2020

Six Feet Apart! Stay Away!

In the best of times this century, I’m not listening to much current music. Music in the time of COVID is pretty much the same. It’s always a miracle when I purchase tunes put out by an artist whose first album came out since 2001.

What was your greatest musical discovery?

Freedom HighwayLinda Ronstadt, oddly. I bought one of her Mexican albums, her Capitol albums, plus the complete Trio with Dolly Parton and Emmylou Harris. After seeing the documentary about her in the summer of 2019, I was utterly sad that her singing voice has been silenced.

Also, I enjoyed Public Enemy’s It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back far more than I thought. Those riffs from the Temptations, Isaac Hayes and many others were quite enjoyable.

The only 2020 music I bought was Reunions by Jason Isbell And the 400 Unit, and Gaslighter by The Dixie Chicks, I mean The Chicks. Whatever. I swore in 2003 that I’d buy all of their albums. They had not put one out in 14 years, so it hasn’t been a heavy lift.

I’ve actually gotten to see my niece Rebecca Jade singing from her home. I’d seen her perform live only once before, back in 2018, when I visited her mother. I’ve also seen RJ with her occasional collaborator, jazz guitarist Peter Sprague. They’ve had the only live music shows I’ve “attended.”

Perfidia – Linda Ronstadt
Gaslighter – The Chicks
What Have I Done To Help – Jason Isbell And the 400 Unit
Freedom Highway – Rhiannon Giddens, feat. Bhi Bhiman
Party for Your Right to Fight – Public Enemy
Western Stars – Bruce Springsteen

Rebecca Jade videos

COVIDy

The Boston Globe compiled 40 songs about the coronavirus pandemic. I’ve actually heard several of these without even trying, usually on a news show.

Six Feet Apart – Luke Combs
Do What You Can  -Bon Jovi
Let Your Love Be Known – Bono
Stay Away – Randy Newman
This Too Shall Pass – Mike Love featuring John Stamos

And there were “songs written before the virus spread but released because the tracks resonate with the current times.”

Living In A Ghost Town – The Rolling Stones
Tryin’ to Keep It Together – Norah Jones
We’re All In This Together Now  – John Paul White featuring Rosanne Cash
Grateful – Jewel

VMAs?

Here’s a matter of self-curiosity. I watched the Video Music Awards this year for the first time in more than a decade. It aired on August 30, but I didn’t actually view it until October. And then in 15-25 minute segments.

As you might imagine, there were people I had never once heard of, CNCO, Maluma, and Doja Cat, who my daughter does not like for some reason. Then there are the ones whose names I’d seen but could not have identified, such as Chloe X Halle and DaBaby.

So THAT’S what The Weeknd looks like. (And he’s significant enough that my spellcheck accepts the spelling of his name.)

Thank goodness for some veteran acts such as Black Eyed Peas and Miley Cyrus. Because my daughter was obsessed a couple of years ago, I actually know more about BTS than any sexagenarian needs to. They premiered the song Dynamite and soon enough it’s not only #1 in the country with half a billion views but playing on some television ad. (For what, IDK, and don’t tell me because I don’t care.)

Lady Gaga won every category for which she was nominated, one with Ariana Grande including a new category.

Dynamite – BTS
Rain On Me – Lady Gaga, Ariana Grande

Quote a song lyric that sums up your year

Nobody told me there’d be days like these (X3)
Strange days indeed
Most peculiar, Mama

Nobody told me – John Lennon (1984, posthumous)

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