The Equal Rights Amendment: Torn

January 15, 2020

The Equal Rights Amendment: Torn

equal rights amendment

Mark Rubin

On January 15, 2020, the Virginia legislature ratified the Equal Rights Amendment. Both legislative bodies passed it. (Candidly, I can’t figure out whether Governor Ralph Northam has any role in the ratification process. I think not, but I’m not sure.)

Congress passed the ERA when the Senate approved it on March 22, 1972. (I was 14 and now I’m 62, for whatever that’s worth.) The amendment gave the states seven years to ratify it. Later, Congress passed an extension of the deadline from March 22, 1979 to June 30, 1982. By June 30, 1982, 37 states had ratified the ERA; however, by the same deadline, five states from among the 37 revoked their

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San Francisco, Here I Come

January 4, 2020

San Francisco, Here I Come

san francisco

Mark Rubin

I arrived as a corporeal being on September 14, 1957, at 10:35 p.m. I suspect I’m the avatar for Boomers, for 1957 represents, even now, the year in which the US experienced more live births. And, for reasons I won’t address here, a baby birthing bump occurs in September. (I want to link to Baby It’s Cold Outside, but I’m PC.)

My birthplace? Letterman Army Hospital, located at the Presidio of San Francisco. Truth be told, the hospital in which I was born was torn down about 10 years later. The replacement hospital no longer exists, and the dirt hosts the Letterman Digital Arts Center, the home of Industrial Light &

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Decades, Redux

January 1, 2020

Decades, Redux

decades, redux

Mark Rubin

I give in! For me the 20th century ended on 12/31/2000, and this decade ends in 364 days. Right is right, but what does and doesn’t matter matters too … and when the decade ends represents a non-issue.*

The Teens started early for me, on Friday, September 4, 2009. I was winding down for the afternoon, ready for the Labor Day weekend. Leaving my building—I owned it—I noted some water coming out of a pipe, into the parking lot. Bothered a bit and thinking about the hassles associated with finding a plumber on a Friday afternoon of a holiday weekend, I left.

By Tuesday morning, I understood the nature of the problem: a bad

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Decades … and Fearful

December 27, 2019

Decades … and Fearful

decades

Mark Rubin

Forgive me for sounding old and crochety, please, but this decade thing torks me off. When people count off, they start with one and end with ten, right? Never, not ever, does a group start with zero and end with nine … except when we discuss decades, centuries, or … even worse, a millennium.

Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) does nothing for me, but I understand the inconoclastic perspective. For me, decades began with -01, -11, -21, etc. They end with -10, -11, and -20. So, the decades’ reviews leave me cold, plain and simple.

Numerical frustration aside, I know I’m fighting an uphill battle. The last millennium ended on 12/31/1999. I know because I

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Politics, Poetry, and Prose

November 1, 2019

Politics, Poetry, and Prose

Senator Elizabeth Warren for President

Elizabeth Warren

Mario Cuomo, who governed the state of New York for 12 years (and shouted a lot less than his son Andrew, who runs the place now), told us candidates campaign using poetry, and winners govern with prose. Governor Cuomo was a smart fellow, and someone whose life always seemed just a wee bit ethereal.

The poetry / prose dichotomy comes to mind often for this political aficionado. I know, though, that the words don’t resonate for everyone. So, here’s the lexicon: Poetry in this context is aspirational, high-minded, and reaching for the stars; prose represents reality, dealing with whipping votes, trade-offs, and getting stuff done.

Of late, of course, we have Senator Elizabeth Warren

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Impeachment circa 2019

October 11, 2019

Impeachment circa 2019

Impeachment

President Donald Trump

Impeachment. It’s on our minds, and I have thoughts about the process and how it’s playing out.

Words matter. So, let’s remember, straightaway, that impeachment represents step one in the process of removing someone from office. That’s it and that’s all!

The Constitution governs our country. And it says, concerning impeachment: The House of Representatives shall choose their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment. See, U.S. Constitution Article 1, Section 5. There’s more, of course, about the Senate’s role as the trial court. But, for now, we’re only dealing with impeachment.

The United States Code includes no statutes which address the impeachment process. Further, the process belongs

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Impeachment? No thanks!

September 20, 2019

Impeachment? No thanks!

Impeachment

President Donald Trump

For months the House of Representatives majority has struggled over impeachment. Do we? Don’t we? What?

Impeachment Basics

Briefly, to impeach the president, vice president, or any other civil officer involves bringing before the House articles of impeachment. A simple majority of the House members must vote aye to send any article to the Senate. There, a trial occurs. Two-thirds of the Senators who are present must vote to convict, to remove anyone from office.

No president has ever been convicted and removed from office. Only Presidents Andrew Johnson and Bill Clinton had trials. In both cases, the Senate acquitted them.

The standard for impeachment is High Crimes and Misdemeanors. The Constitution offers no

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September 14 – Happy Birthday

September 14, 2019

September 14 – Happy Birthday

september 14

Mark Rubin

Birthday News

Who’ da thunk it? 62 years old today, and when I went to bed last night, I was 61. That’s 22,644 sunrises. 744 new moons. Lots of martinis, and a ton of fun times.*

I’m a very lucky guy, in so very many ways. I never miss a meal (except for lunch, which I avoid every day). I pay my bills. My daughter and my former spouse call often, and neither asks for money. My girlfriend / law partner loves me, and our blended family of Corgis and a Schnoodle love us.

(About Max the Schnoodle. He hates me right now. He’s on a diet, and for a dude who lives

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Go Tories

September 4, 2019

Go Tories

go tories

Mark Rubin

Parliamentary democracy and the U.S. system differ greatly. It’s no small thing that across the pond the Prime Minister does not appear on any national ballot. The Prime Minister (Boris Johnson), one of 500 Members of Parliament, answers to: (a) his constituents in Uxbridge and South Ruislip, in West London; and (b) the Conservative Party, which can replace him as its leader.

Here, of course, we the people elect our national leader, Donald Trump.* He leads his party and our nation, but he holds office for a fixed term, subject only to: (a) impeachment and conviction; (b) death or incapacity; and (c) the voters on November 3, 2020. And, because of his appeal

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Dale Carnegie He’s Not!

August 29, 2019

Dale Carnegie He’s Not!

Dale Carnegie

Dale Carnegie

Dale Carnegie

President Donald Trump

America, Pre-Trump

Dale Carnegie died in 1955, more than 60 years ago. Still, the book he wrote in 1936, How to Win Friends and Influence People, remains very popular. How popular? No. 11 on the Amazon Chart (if I’m reading it correctly.)

Mr. Carnegie’s message has always been simple: Make people like you and help them see things your way. The message resonates, even if his style—a bit hucksterish—does not sit well with everyone. And it works! I know plenty of people—including one regular MRW reader—who followed the path, with significant success.

I mention Mr. Carnegie for a reason. He offered optimism. He saw a big wide world, conquerable by

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