Pardon!

June 16, 2017

Pardon!

Mr. President

Lots and lots of words, written and spoken about Mueller, Rosenstein, Russia, and Trump. Most of what we read and hear focuses on who can fire whom, and whether when the firings will happen. In and amongst the noise, though, we get plenty of “there’s no evidence” and “firing Mueller will destroy Trump.”

Bad frames. People, the Watergate break-in happened on June 17, 1972, 45 years ago, to the day. We live in a different world. To the “no evidence” crowd, evidence exists—or not—and we find out about it through investigations. They take time! Reading tweets, watching the news, and knowing the basics does not qualify you to say evidence does or does not exist to support a …

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The Stupidest Public Man … Ever? Donald Trump!

June 1, 2017

The Stupidest Public Man … Ever? Donald Trump!

Donald Trump

Donald Trump

Many words came to mind this afternoon, as President Donald Trump excised the United States from the Paris Climate Accord. Stupid is the only one I came up with, to describe our POTUS, which gets me past Facebook censors.

I’m taking a pass on the merits of staying in or getting out. Frankly, there’s no intelligent discussion to be had. All of the credible evidence demonstrates the existence of a problem, a problem created by humankind, and a problem for which our country bears a grossly disproportionate share of the responsibility. And a problem whcih threatens the existence we know! (Don’t believe me? Comment below, or send me a

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Kathy Griffin and President Donald J. Trump

May 31, 2017

Kathy Griffin and President Donald J. Trump

Whither Kathy Griffin and the head! Don’t look for the head here. Or for any references to stories about it, for reasons which will become evident in short order.

President Donald J. Trump told us two weeks ago that “[n]o politician in history—and I say this with great surety—has been treated worse or more unfairly.” Uh, OK. If we ignore your bullsh*t claims about where your predecessor was born. If we ignore the decision by the Republican Congress to fight President Obama at every turn, in an attempt to make him a one-term president and, after he was re-elected, to interfere with his legislative agenda in unprecedented ways. And—because we all work

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London—Saturday and Sunday

May 19, 2017

London—Saturday and Sunday

London Saturday

40,802 steps, on Saturday.* Yep, you read that right! Everybody approaches a new city differently. I got many “Do the bus tour” commands. Old friends FF and GF brought their Rick Steves guidebooks, along with leftover money and Oyster cards, and a strong recommendation for ear buds and the Steves’ app on my phone. (I read the books before I left. Very helpful! I wish I could figure out how to use the wireless headphones I bought, so I would be prepared for a virtual tour.) From others I got “see this” and “you must see that.” Spoiler alert, and I do feel like a failure, really: never got to Harrods.

Alas,

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Roger Ailes, Dead – Some Thoughts!

May 18, 2017

Roger Ailes, Dead – Some Thoughts!

roger ailes

Roger Ailes

For those of us who communicate in the public sphere about this and that, the passing of a person of less than sterling character presents many challenges. Deeply held beliefs about basic decency bump up against the need to be candid about a life lived poorly, especially when the decedent harmed many among us.

The passing of Justice Antonin Scalia brought those challenges into focus. On February 14, 2016, less than a day after Justice Scalia died, I posted Scalia – Thoughts about First Reactions!, in which I focused on the very issue mentioned in the preceding paragraph. (I found some comments about Justice Scalia truly offensive.) Four days later,

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London—The Prequel and My First Day

May 15, 2017

London—The Prequel and My First Day

I learned something when I wrote this post: The United Kingdom includes Great Britain and Northern Ireland, and Great Britain includes England, Scotland, and Wales. So, I’m writing about my visit to the U.K. although, in fact, I never left England.*

My trip came together pretty quickly. My GF, LB, planned a solo trip. Still, she graciously agreed to let me accompany her for a chunk of her holiday. She went ahead, to places on the Continent. We met up in London a few days after my arrival, and we returned home together.

I flew to London on British Airways, non-stop from Phoenix. People have been raving about this flight to me for years.

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Mother’s Day and Rochelle Rubin

May 14, 2017

Mother’s Day and Rochelle Rubin

I’ve been quietly and lightly dreading this day for a while. Quietly, both because I’ve been on holiday—Yanks, that means vacation in, at least, Europe and the British Isles—and because dwelling on the matter hardly honors my “get on with it” mom. And lightly? For the same reasons.

So I got up early today, with lots to do before I return to work after being out of the office for 10 days. Plenty of busy also keeps the mind occupied. (As for jet lag, I saw a friend at Whole Foods an hour ago. “I thought you were in London,” says he. “Back since yesterday afternoon,” I shared. Surprised, was he.)

Without conscious effort, my

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More on Health Care … and We v. Me-I

May 5, 2017

More on Health Care … and We v. Me-I

I got into it with a guy I don’t know the other evening on Facebook about Obamacare. (We have a few mutual friends.) I shouldn’t have, but I do so many things I shouldn’t; falling into an FB encounter of the less than kind sort falls outside my top 10.

A mutual friend posted about her insurance frustrations. This fellow labeled himself—Conservative—and expressed his “HOPE [that] the GOP does not screw this up,” referring to House passage of the bill on Tuesday. I wrote:

They already have. The insurance markets don’t like uncertainty, and this crew just created a boatload of it earlier today.

He went off on Obamacare. (Non-sequitur.) I

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Mo Brooks, TRUMPcare, and the Big Eff You

May 3, 2017

Mo Brooks, TRUMPcare, and the Big Eff You

Representative Morris Jackson Brooks, Jr. (R-Ala.), aka Mo Brooks, offered up more stupid on health care the other day. Defending and advocating for Trumpcare—I assume the president likes the appellation, and likes it better when he sees TRUMPcare—Congressman Brooks said:

It will allow insurance companies to require people who have higher health care costs to contribute more to the insurance pool that helps offset all these costs, thereby reducing the cost to those people who lead good lives, they’re healthy, they’ve done the things to keep their bodies healthy. And right now, those are the people who have done things the right way that are seeing their costs skyrocketing.

So what’s going

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Proposition 101: Tucson Sales Tax Increase

May 1, 2017

Proposition 101: Tucson Sales Tax Increase

Tucson has an election coming soon, on May 16, 2017. Voters will decide whether they want to increase the city sales tax by ½ of one percent to pay for road maintenance and public safety. Here’s a link with details, courtesy of Ballotpedia. Here’s the key takeaway regarding the spending plans:

Proposition 101 increases the sales tax by an additional 1/2 percent between July 1, 2017, and June 30, 2022. The 0.5 percent tax would bring in an estimated $250 million over the five years.

Of the revenue raised by the 0.5 percent sales tax, 60 percent would be deposited into a Public Safety Improvements Fund and 40 percent would be deposited

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