April 20, 2019

So wrong.

"I don't want to talk about the environment. The environment sucks. Nobody's fixing it. We're all gonna die."

Said one 20ish woman to another, after they walked by a man who asked them (in an expansive, exuberant voice) if they wanted to talk about the environment.

ADDED: Overheard on the street... by me, first-hand.

At the Eggs-actly Right Cafe...

... you can serve up your scrambled, poached, fried, and soft- and hard-boiled thoughts.


"Should a White Man Be the Face of the Democratic Party in 2020?"

A blunt headline at the NYT.

The article forefronts this quote from a young woman: "Personally I’d love to see a woman... If people are being catty and holding gender or race against a candidate, it would break my heart."

So I infer the NYT answer to the question is: Yes, of course, that would be fine, if it's the right white man.

We now know that, apparently, Joe Biden is going to enter the race. And it is a little embarrassing that, according to recent polls, the top 4 candidates for the Democratic nomination are white males. I think the NYT is trying to help readers accept that rejecting white maleness should not be a priority. The radical feminist in me wants to say: Yes, yes, it's never the right time to reject the white male. But this isn't the right time for the radical feminist, is it? This is the right time for quoting random young women who casually waft the notion that it would be CATTY to insist on a woman candidate.


It doesn't take a radical feminist to call sexism on that word. What the hell, NYT?
Is a white male the best face for an increasingly diverse Democratic Party in 2020? And what’s the bigger gamble: to nominate a white man and risk disappointing some of the party’s base, or nominate a minority candidate or a woman who might struggle to carry predominantly white swing states like Wisconsin, Michigan and Pennsylvania that both Barack Obama and Mr. Trump won?
Yes, of course. It's always one version or another of that story.

The linked article is long. I'll just give you one more quote:
“Trump will run over a woman,” Carl West, 64, said as he walked to see Ms. Warren at the historic Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma. “He’ll just run a woman into the ground.”

"Now the dossier — financed by Hillary Clinton’s campaign and the Democratic National Committee, and compiled by the former British intelligence agent Christopher Steele — is likely to face new, possibly harsh scrutiny from multiple inquiries."

Says the NYT.
Mr. Mueller’s report contained over a dozen passing references to the document’s claims but no overall assessment of why so much did not check out....

Republicans in Congress have vowed to investigate. The Justice Department’s inspector general is considering whether the Federal Bureau of Investigation improperly relied on the dossier in applying to the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court for a warrant to eavesdrop on Carter Page, a Trump adviser. The inspector general wants to know what the F.B.I. learned about Mr. Steele’s sources and whether it disclosed any doubts about their veracity to the court....

[It] could be Russian disinformation. That would mean that in addition to carrying out an effective attack on the Clinton campaign, Russian spymasters hedged their bets and placed a few land mines under Mr. Trump’s presidency as well....

But Mr. Mueller, after a two-year investigation involving roughly 40 F.B.I. agents and other specialists, provided no evidence to support the claim[s]....
Much more detail at the link.

April 19, 2019

At the Miss-You Café...


... you can talk about whatever you want.


I keep hearing that word...

I hear: Ask not whether there was — technically, legalistically — a crime. Ask whether it feels like Nixon.

How will the intensely (overly) emotional reaction to the Mueller report affect the competition for the presidential nomination of the Democratic Party?

Who is helped and who is hurt? Will the Democrats or Donald Trump benefit in the end?

I haven't looked for the various reactions from candidates. Are they stirring up Muellermania or demonstrating thoughtfulness and sobriety?

There's the Muellermania paradox — a highly emotional reaction to the way Trump seems to have been highly emotional. (Have you heard he said "I'm fucked" when he found out they'd appointed the special counsel?!!! That seems like a perfectly normal reaction to me but a lot of people are hyperventilating about how cahraaazzzeeee it is. Are they hyperventilaters mentally sound enough to be trusted?)

"Nusrat Jahan Rafi was doused with kerosene and set on fire at her school in Bangladesh. Less than two weeks earlier, she had filed a sexual harassment complaint..."

"...against her headmaster.... Nusrat, who was 19, was from Feni, a small town 100 miles (160km) south of Dhaka. She was studying at a madrassa, or Islamic school. On 27 March, she said the headmaster called her into his office and repeatedly touched her in an inappropriate manner. Before things could go any further she ran out...  At the local police station she gave a statement. She should have been provided with a safe environment to recall her traumatic experiences. Instead she was filmed by the officer in charge on his phone as she described the ordeal. In the video Nusrat is visibly distressed and tries to hide her face with her hands. The policeman is heard calling the complaint 'no big deal' and telling her to move her hands from her face. The video was later leaked to local media. According to a statement given by Nusrat, a fellow female student took her to the roof of the school, saying one of her friends was being beaten up. When Nusrat reached the rooftop four or five people, wearing burqas, surrounded her and allegedly pressured her to withdraw the case against the headmaster. When she refused, they set her on fire. Police Bureau of Investigation chief Banaj Kumar Majumder said the killers wanted 'to make it look like a suicide'. Their plan failed when Nusrat was rescued after they fled the scene.... 'One of the killers was holding her head down with his hands, so kerosene wasn't poured there and that's why her head wasn't burned'... In the ambulance, fearing she might not survive, she recorded a statement on her brother's mobile phone. 'The teacher touched me, I will fight this crime till my last breath,' you can hear her say."

BBC reports.

"The most generous reading of Robert Mueller’s report, the one pushed by President Donald Trump’s own defenders, is, in fact, profoundly damning"/"Barr Is Right About Everything. Admit You Were Wrong. After Trump’s vindication, the liberal media and its allies in government should face a reckoning. I’m not holding my breath."

I'm trying to read: 1. Ezra Klein in Vox, and 2.  Christopher Buskirk in the NYT.

It's quite the cacophony.

Options: 1. Read a lot of commentary and see what strikes you as most convincing, 2. Note that there's plenty of opinion on the side where your feelings already are and move on, 3. Triangulate, 4. Don't look at any commentary, just read the report for yourself and make your own decision, 5. Reaffirm your aversion to politics and move on.