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Hallelujah–Pat McCrory Is Defeated!

December 5, 2016

North Carolina GOP Gov. Pat McCrory has conceded the governor’s race to Democratic Attorney General Roy Cooper, almost a full month after Election Day.

The contentious race dragged into a weeks-long canvassing of the state, as provisional and absentee ballots were tabulated. But Cooper’s margin of victory continued to creep up, from about 5,000 votes on Election Day to over 10,000 today.

This is great news!

In the races for governor across the nation there was no other sitting incumbent I wanted to see removed more than Pat McCrory. Cooper had made this race extremely competitive and the poll numbers showed something between a tie and a comfortable lead for the challenger.   The problem that the very unpopular McCrory faced were all those educated voters in the suburbs and urban areas who thought he was just dreadful.  The transgender bathroom matter was pure bigotry.  It allowed the whole state to be stained as bigots as a result. The fine folks of North Carolina wanted to be viewed differently when it came to this race.

Reince Priebus Wants Us To Think Up Is Down, In Is Out, Truth No Longer Matters

December 5, 2016

Over the past many months I have often been called an elitist on Facebook for arguing that the populist wave which struck America was spawned from uneducated voters.  There is no way that a sound thinker would vote for a candidate who did not have fully developed policy proposals, or have an ability to talk even for 60 seconds on a topic with contradicting himself.  No serious voter would support a candidate who admitted he did not read much and even disliked reading in general.  Lets be honest and say much of the nation consists of Homer Simpsons.  Frankly, there is no more polite way of stating the truth.

My readers will have to admit the same following the Sunday morning news shows where a most absurd statement made by Donald Trump was again the basis for questions.

Recall last Sunday when dumbfounded news organizations rushed to cover Donald Trump’s positively Pinocchean assertion on Twitter that “millions” of people voted illegally on November 8.   Simply off-the-wall-bat-crap-crazy.   The statement was aimed at the ill-informed, under-informed, or as I term them, stupid voters.

Yesterday the news organizations were up against the obfuscation of Trump’s surrogates, who did their damndest to justify Trump’s voter-fraud untruth!  It was simply a sight that one could not have scripted any better if desiring to show how the Trump operation is playing to the lowest common denominators in the land.

On ABC’s “This Week” host George Stephanopoulos was trying to talk some sense into Mike Pence , who said, “I don’t know that that is a false statement.” Stephanopoulos: “But can you provide any evidence to back up that statement?” Pence: “I think he’s expressed his opinion on that.”

Then there was the slimy Reince Priebus who went even further on CBS, telling “Face the Nation Host” John Dickerson, “I don’t know if that’s not true. … There are estimates all over the map.” Dickerson: “But you think millions of people voted illegally?” Priebus: “It’s possible.”

It was simply the most embarrassing set of interviews I have seen in a very long time.  Their political staffs must be just outraged that otherwise smart men could become like the three-thumbs they play to across the land.

Therefore, if being reasoned and factually based makes me an elitist than I claim the title and wear it proudly.   I never will submit to those who have turned this nation into a laughingstock.

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

December 4, 2016

The kid in all of us came to the surface this morning as we looked out the window and saw what Mother Nature had produced.  The first taste of winter landed on the lawn and rooftops early today and there was no way not to smile and stare outside for just a while.  Coffee so hot and aromatic made the morning perfect.  The only thing to top it was the cinnamon rolls that James baked.   With the trees and decorations up and all looking festive the snow was the final needed ingredient to make this season complete.

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TRUMBO Thrills And Sends Clear Message About Political Freedom

December 3, 2016

James and I watched one of those films that could be shown in an American civics or history class and be called an educational tool.  Simply remarkable not only for the all too real story it told of the House Un-American Affairs Committee’s attempts to smear people for their political beliefs, but also for the undermining of employment and friendships with those who had communist sympathies.

The film also was stylistically beautiful. When Trumbo finally is able to return to the screen his name is reflected in the most touching way on the lenses of his glasses and makes all watching the film do a hand pump in the air.

The heart of the story was about the successful career of 1940s screenwriter Dalton Trumbo and how it came to a crushing end when he and other Hollywood figures are blacklisted for their political beliefs. TRUMBO tells the story of his fight against the U.S. government and studio bosses in a war over words and freedom, which entangled everyone in Hollywood from Hedda Hopper who is a merciless witch, to the jar-neck and dead-head John Wayne, to snazzy and courageous Kirk Douglas, and the brave and far-sighted Otto Preminger.

This movie is perfect for this time in our country.  It fits the present mood of the people as there is great dismay about the fate of our nation after the election along with real fears and doubts so many are experiencing.  This movie is troubling and also uplifting as it shows the liberal perspective endures and wins.

Diplomatic Blowup In Asia Due To Trump Wanting Hotel Project In Taiwan?

December 3, 2016

Millions of Americans this morning can say ‘I told you so’.  There is a sinister aspect to all that surrounds Donald Trump.  His using the White House for his own ends was something that was talked about during the campaign.  The collision between governing and Trump’s business is most concerning and troubling.

Newspapers in Taiwan reported last month that a Trump Organization representative had visited the country, expressing interest in perhaps developing a hotel project adjacent to Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport, which is undergoing a major expansion. … A spokeswoman for the Trump Organization, Amanda Miller, said that the company had ‘no plans for expansion into Taiwan,’ and that there had been no ‘authorized visits’ to the country to push a Trump development project. But Ms. Miller did not dispute that Anne-Marie Donoghue, a sales manager overseeing Asia for Trump Hotels, had visited Taiwan in October, a trip that Ms. Donoghue recorded on her Facebook page.

The news this morning is context for what happened via a phone call with Trump in a most unprecedented situation.

President-elect Donald Trump spoke Friday with Taiwan’s president, a major departure from decades of U.S. policy in Asia and a breach of diplomatic protocol with ramifications for the incoming president’s relations with China. The call is the first known contact between a U.S. president or president-elect with a Taiwanese leader since before the United States broke diplomatic relations with the island in 1979. China considers Taiwan a province, and news of the official outreach by Trump is likely to infuriate the regional military and economic power.

Elvis With The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra

December 2, 2016

Today the post office delivered a gem.  The second two-set albums of Elvis with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra.   Simply stunning!    Thanks to James for making it happen.

If you love Elvis this is a must for your collection.  And when they get to your home remember to turn up the stereo!

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Lets Say It Again, “Huckleberry Finn” Should Not Be Censored, ‘Nigger’ Helps Us Understand Racism

December 2, 2016

Hat Tip To Solly

Two classic American novels have been temporarily banned from a Virginia school district after a parent raised concerns about the use of a racial slur.   The use of the book’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and To Kill a Mockingbird were suspended from Accomack County Public Schools after a parent raised concerns about their use of the N-word.

“There’s so much racial slurs and defensive wording in there that you can’t get past that,” one mother said during last month’s school board meeting. “Right now, we are a nation divided as it is.”  A review committee consisting of the principal, the library media specialist, the classroom teacher, a parent and/or student, and the complaint will evaluate the matter.  Combined, the two books use the N-word more than 250 times and some parents say the use of the racial slur is unacceptable.

Well hold on Nelly!

I deplore the word ‘nigger’.

I deplore the word ‘faggot’.

I do not want either used in common every-day conversation, and can say I have no friends that do use such language.

But there comes a time when the  word ‘nigger’ conveys the tone and message required, such as in the book Huckleberry Finn that many of us read as youngsters in conjunction with Tom Sawyer.  At least I did.  In fact, Huckleberry Finn was a classroom text for me and my school peers.

I mention all this as Huckleberry Finn that was penned in 1884 is now being published without the word ‘nigger’.  In its place will be the more sterile word ‘slave’.  I find this censorship highly troubling.  To add salt to this wound is also the removal of the word “injun”.  Again, not  a word we want used today, but one that puts the reader into the times of which the author has constructed in his book.  (Let us not forget, it IS his book.)

I think it asinine to touch the words penned by Mark Twain.  I have enough problems when some in Hollywood condone colorizing old films.  But when someone remakes the words of a classic read I want to scream.

Racism was, and remains a real and troubling part of our society.  To attempt to whitewash it from a text takes away the one thing that we need more than anything else.  That being a protracted and highly engaged conversation about racism.  University scholar Alan Gribben is responsible for the censoring of Huckleberry Finn in what he describes as an attempt to get the book back in the hands of high school literature courses.

While I applaud the desire to have youth read Huckleberry Finn, I throw-up over Gribben’s means to achieve it.  To not address racism in the manner it was presented in the book by Twain removes a great teaching moment for the folks who will read it.

Even after the many decades of work and public policy aimed to construct our society to be more equal we are still limited from a real dialogue on racism.  If we can not get over the mere usage of the word ‘nigger’ in a text as highly praised as Huckleberry Finn how can we move to a higher  level of awareness in our communities or legislatures when confronting racism?

As for the parents in Virginia I suggest instead of stamping out books that might offend someone they instead find a more complete definition of what education means and ponder that for a while.

And so it goes.

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