Friday, December 09, 2016

Video Update on Trump's Progress in "Draining The Swamp"

With the appointment of the third Goldman Sachs executive to his inner circle today, Donald Trump's #DrainTheSwamp campaign is going about as well as expected.

Thursday, December 08, 2016

The TBL Tweet of the Day for 12/8/2016

The tweet of the day for today came from @LOLGOP, summing up the ridiculousness of the #WarOnChristmas and that messy intersection where militant anti-political-correctness meets right-wing conspiracy insanity, all in just slightly under 140 characters.

(There may be a gap in picking a #TBLTweetOfTheDay for the next few days, but I'm sure that Donald Trump won't do or say anything idiotic between now and next Tuesday, will he?)

Frontline Feline Foot Soldiers in our Liberal War On Christmas

Wednesday, December 07, 2016

TBL Tweet of the Day for 12/7/2016

THE @JoyceCarolOates tweeted the following about the history of fake news this morning:

Tuesday, December 06, 2016

TBL Tweet of the Day for 12/6/2016

The tweet of the day is from @DaveWeigel. It's another quick reminder of how different the cost of health care can be in places where it's not completely driven by the profit needs of private insurers, hospitals, and others in the U.S. medical and pharmaceutical industries.

"Oh, bummer." -- Jerry Garcia, December 6, 1969

If the popular myth has the decade of "The Sixties" reaching its cultural apotheosis in August 1969 on the green East Coast at The Woodstock Music & Art Fair, then its obituary was written less than four months later on this date in '69 on the dusty West Coast at Altamont Speedway. With Santana, Jefferson Airplane, Crosby Stills Nash & Young, and The Grateful Dead on the bill of the Altamont Free Concert along with the Rolling Stones, the plan was to recreate heaven rather than hell, but the Dead never took the stage and Jerry Garcia summed up the day with two words:

In the eternal American argument between Nick Carraway and Jay Gatsby about our ability to recreate the past, Nick won this round.

Monday, December 05, 2016

TBL Tweet of the Day for 12/5/2016

The tweet of the day for Monday was one of the first I saw today, from @theDavidCrosby, which helped to get my day off to a good start.

Here are David Crosby, Michael League, Becca Stevens, and Michelle Willis performing Joni Mitchell's 'Woodstock' beautifully in a green room. This is a song from the Nixon years; there will be artistic and musical beauty in the Trump years too.

Good Night.

"What is Honour? A word. What is that word Honour? Air."

The combination of Donald Trump's most recent tweet today, "If the press would cover me accurately & honorably, I would have far less reason to 'tweet.' Sadly, I don't know if that will ever happen!", and reading Philip Roth's Our Gang about Dick Nixon, who was pathologically wed to the concepts of "peace with honor" and "an honorable end to the war" (even if that insistence cost tens of thousands of  American lives in Vietnam during his time in office) got me thinking about Republican presidents and their obsession with that hollow abstract noun.

Is this a concept that is more important to Republicans? It seems that way to me. My feelings about the concept are more in line with Sir John Falstaff's in English literature's most famous consideration of honor at the end of Act V, Scene 1 of Henry IV, Part One when Prince Hal speaks to Sir John immediately before the battle at Shrewsbury.

From Bodleian First Folio:
I would it were bed time, Hal, and all well.
Why, thou owest Heaven a death.

'Tis not due yet; I would be loath to pay him before
his day. What need I be so forward with him that
calls not on me? Well, 'tis no matter; honour pricks
me on. Yea, but how if honour prick me off when I
come on? How then? Can honour set to a leg? No: or
an arm? No: Or take away the grief of a wound? No.
Honour hath no skill in surgery, then? No. What is
honour? A word.  What is that word honour? Air.
A trim reckoning! Who hath it?
He that died o' Wednesday. Doth he feel it? No.
Doth he hear it? No. Is it insensible, then. Yea,
to the dead. But will it not live with the living?
No. Why? Detraction will not suffer it. Therefore
I'll none of it. Honour is a mere scutcheon, and so
ends my catechism.

I Trust the Fourth Estate More Than Real Estate Moguls

Over on Twitter today, one of the trending hashtags is #LoveMyNewspaper. During the four years beginning on January 20, 2017, one of the ongoing battles -- if not the most important ongoing battle -- will be between the post-truth president and his media watchdogs, especially those in the print (and e-print) media who are capable of delving in depth and over time into the statements and actions of next administration and its tangled conflicts of interest.

We need to be clear about which side we're on.

TBL Tweet of the Day for 12/4/2016

One of the things I don't like about Twitter is the way that the past quickly disappears in the constant flow of the new; I think that's one of the reasons it was impossible for voters to keep a handle on the accumulating weight of Donald Trump's baggage as we chased the outrage of the moment (which tended with Comey's loose lips and the media's penchant for balance to be Hillary Clinton's emails in the latter days of the campaign).

One of the advantages of blogs is that they are organized with less clutter and with an easy-to-follow timeline, so today I'm starting something new here on I'm picking one tweet from the previous day to highlight, honor, and embed in amber. The first honor goes to @ezlusztig. I know nothing about Elliot Lusztig outside of his tweets and his Twitter cover photo showing one of the world's great artistic moments, Phillipe Petit's 1974 walk above lower Manhattan.

This tweet is not in my style (which prefers using all 140 characters in complete grammatical sentences), but the brevity was perfect here in response to racist Anne Coulter's racist rhetorical question about the Dakota Access Pipeline protesters, "Why do these 'Native Americans' look exactly like the Trump protesters, Ferguson rioters, college hooligans, Occupy Wall St, etc?"

Unlike most of the new features that I have introduced on this blog from time to time, I am going to try to keep this up every day (except when I'm traveling or otherwise engaged in computer-free activities). If I follow you on Twitter, maybe you'll get to be the #TBLTweetOfTheDay soon.