The Widdershins

I’m back.  The wedding was lovely, and I am almost-but-not-quite caught up on sleep at this point.  But as happens more and more, this week has been a difficult one for the world.  The Israeli election is in the rearview mirror, and things will go as they go hereafter – it’s well above my paygrade.  The Republican race to whatever is officially off and running, with Jeb “I’m my own man” Bush grasping firmly to his roots for dollars and advice, and Ted “I hate Obamacare but now I’ve signed up for it, yet voted to repeal my coverage” Cruz launching his act in front of a captive audience of Liberty University students.  All of the aforementioned events have suddenly seemed of less immediate import since Germanwings flight 9525  fell from the skies, taking all 150 souls aboard from those who knew and loved them.

I admit that I am as baffled as everyone else as to why an apparently normal person would deliberately and agonizingly drop a plane into a pristine mountain.  There are possible medical implications, as some brain tumors affecting the temporal lobe may provoke sudden changes in behavior, though most are considerably more subtle.  A proper autopsy of Andreas Lubitz will likely be impossible, so all are simply left to wonder.  I’m certain that there will be an exhaustive investigation, and I’m equally certain that the findings will at least initially mean little to those who lost family and friends in such a cruel fashion.  The final moments aboard the aircraft had to be terrifying.

So, let’s spend today searching for solace in song, in hopes that in comforting ourselves we may project peace outward.  Otherwise, please feel free to consider this to be the usual open thread.

(1) Dies Irae – Gregorian Chant

(2) Hallelujah – Jeff Buckley

(3) Song for Adam – Jackson Brown

(4) Fire and Rain – James Taylor

(5) Let It Be – The Beatles

(6) Farewell, My Friend – Dennis Wilson




Dressed for Spring - L Diane Johnson

It’s spring and time for those #%&#$ allergies!

Good Wednesday to you Widdershins!  Yes, it’s moi here to do a post!

With chat probably recovering from her granddaughter’s wedding and with Prolix most probably still having some computer issues, I thought I would try to help out by sharing a couple of things that I saw on the internet lately.  Now I’m still having some medical things going on myself and one of them, sort of precludes me from prolonged sitting, if you get my drift.  Nevertheless, let’s take a look at a couple of things that I spied with my little eyes.

Oy vey!  Who gnu? (Such a nice boy!)

So if you are single, heterosexual and looking for that someone special there’s been the social app for your phone, Tinder.  Tinder uses facebook profiles to match up people with similar interests, common friends and such.

Tinder allows the users to anonymously like or reject potential matches using a simple swiping gesture. If two users are interested in each other, it is a “match” and Tinder introduces the two users and allows them to chat. Subscription-exclusive features allow users to undo “swipes” and search the network globally.

Well David Yarus, a twenty-something millennial entrepreneur who happens to be Jewish saw Tinder for the first time and he thought “Eureka!”.  He knew how to take that app and make it something better and directed more toward the young Jewish community of millennials.  And so with that idea he created the app JSwipe.  He describes the typical JSwipe user:

Mr. Yarus describes typical JSwipe users as “millennial Jews around the world whose grandparents and mothers are saying, ‘When are you going to marry someone Jewish?’ ”

He counts himself among the target audience. Though Mr. Yarus grew up in an observant Jewish household in Miami Beach and attends a synagogue in the tradition of the Carlebach spiritual movement in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, he calls himself “post-affiliation.” (“I don’t do labels,he said.)

The Times article describes it this way:

Started last April (during Passover), the app is a faddish take on the age-old desire to marry within the tribe. Instead of attributes like favorite movies, users indicate their degree of Jewishness (among them: Just Jewish, Orthodox and Willing to Convert).Jewish wedding

The app is very similar to Tinder in that you right-swipe to show some interest in a possible match or left-swipe to kind of go “Meh”.  But it does it with a twist:

Swipe right and a Star of David with a happy face appears; swipe left and it wears a frown. When a couple match, animated figures appear doing the hora.

So if your bubbe in Boca is after you about when you are going to find that nice (Jewish) boy or girl, tell her you’ll take a swipe at it.  ;-)


* * * * * * *


Okay, enough is enough “progressives” and
members of the “Warren Wing”

Or to paraphrase Charles Pierce in Esquire:

Please Leave Elizabeth Warren Alone
In which we appeal for calm and for the Senator Professor to stay where she is.

Actually, Charles Pierce and at Shakesville, both have a problem with this.  In case you are not aware, the Boston Globe came out with three different articles in which they argue that Elizabeth Warren should or needs to run for President.

Anna Galland of wrote:

Warren should run. Our country will be better off if she does. She would be a strong candidate — one who injects valuable ideas into the conversation and ensures the kind of debate our country needs. And she could win. [Note:  no she couldn’t]

Put simply, this moment was made for Elizabeth Warren.

…To be clear: Senator Warren has said she’s not running for president, and we take her for her word. But we also believe she’s open to persuasion.  (bolding and italics mine-Fred)

As Melissa said (putting herself into the shoes of the Globe folks and their thinking?)

Our country needs her. (It’s her duty to run.) Clinton must be stopped. (And Warren is the only one who can do it.) Her party needs her. (But not so much she shouldn’t risk a long career in public service to do this thing we want her to do RIGHT NOW.)

Charles Pierce puts forth even more arguments against the idea of a Warren run. (including the fact that the woman has said NO so many times!)

Pierce quotes part of the Globe editorial:

But Barack Obama overcame Clinton’s advantages in 2008, and Warren or another candidate still could in 2016. Even if they don’t..

And slaps that idea down immediately saying:

OK, stop right there. The only reason for anyone to put themselves through the torture course we call a presidential campaign is if they judge themselves to have a realistic chance of winning. “Even if they don’t…” is not a factor. Nobody has a responsibility to undertake this exercise merely to “frame the debate,” or to “toughen up the nominee,” or to give bored political journalists an opportunity to pad the expense report. Any estimate of a politician’s chance that includes this phrase is a sucker’s play.

The Globe article goes on to say that Warren “has made closing the economic gaps in America her main political priority, in a career that has included standing up for homeowners facing illegal foreclosures and calling for more bankruptcy protections. If she runs, it’ll ensure that those issues take their rightful place at the center of the national political debate.”, to which Pierce corrrectly responds that she can do that and more while she stays in the Senate.

Pierce goes on to say that he’s seen no data that indicates Warren would be a stronger opponent to Hillary in the primaries than Jim Webb or Martin O’Malley.  Pierce closes his piece with what I think is the most important part of his arguments:

I think she’s being set up for a fall here. If she doesn’t run, it will be said of her that she doesn’t truly have the courage of her convictions in the areas most important to her, and on the issues that are closest to her heart. If she runs and she loses, then it will be said that those issues are not the kind that motivate voters, and they will slide into a morass of weaselspeak, never to be heard clearly again. Leave the woman alone, please. She has no obligation to give you all a cat-fight because you think that’s what democracy demands.  (Bolding mine)

dont know batshit crazy

I’ll close with this oh-so-lovely youtube clip.  Although it’s about Brit-Brit, we’ll say it’s for Elizabeth Warren.  I apologize to each and every one of you ahead of time for this!

Okay this is a totally open thread.  Please take it in whatever direction you chose to go.

Good Monday, all! I hope you all had a great weekend, and that Chatblu is taking a well-deserved siesta after a very hard several weeks of wedding work.

Well, it looks like Benjamin Netanyahu (otherwise known as “Bibi”) is once again, Prime Minister of Israel. And an unwelcome victory it is for those of us who would like to hear some other voices on the topic of figuring out what the h*ll to do about the camps, Hamas and the unrelenting hatred of Israel’s neighbors. Exit polls seemed to suggest that the Zionist Union was close to, or slightly leading, Bibi’s right-wing Likud Party. But either the vote was tampered with, or Bibi’s last-minute fear-mongering won the day.

The Likud victory came after initial exit polls from three Israeli television stations on March 17 showed the top two parties in a virtual tie. That result would have itself represented a vast improvement for Likud, which had been polling in the 20 to 23-seat range as recently as last week.

But official returns that came in hours later showed Likud emerging as the clear victor. Netanyahu now has a relatively easy path to forming a coalition of his so-called “natural partners” on the right and the religious parties, along with the center-right Kulanu party.

In his acceptance speech on the night he was re-elected, Netanyahu stated that there would never be a Palestinian state while he is Prime Minister. Well! You can bet our Dear Leader was Not Amused, and he made sure everyone knew about it.

“We take him at his word when he said that it wouldn’t happen during his prime ministership, and so that’s why we’ve got to evaluate what other options are available to make sure that we don’t see a chaotic situation in the region,” the president said in an interview with The Huffington Post on Friday.

Though he pledged to keep working with the Israeli government on military and intelligence operations, Obama declined to say whether the United States would continue to block Palestinian efforts to secure statehood through the United Nations. In a phone conversation the two had on Thursday, he said he indicated to Netanyahu that “it is going to be hard to find a path where people are seriously believing that negotiations are possible.”

The idea of blocking the UN effort is to get all interested parties to the table and make them negotiate. Obama was essentially saying that Bibi’s statements made it seem like this will no longer happen…and in that case, the US may no longer block the UN efforts of the “Palestinians,” which could help ease their way into a bloodless (at least at first) coup.

The problem I have with this reaction is that I don’t believe the mythical “two-state solution,” a naive creation of those who believe facts not in evidence, will EVER happen. Certainly not while Hamas in in charge of the hundreds of thousands, perhaps more, angry Arabs camped in Gaza, claiming a right to the land that is dubious at best, and murderous at worst. In addition, I would hope that no Israeli politician, right, left or center, thinks that Hamas is a genuine partner for peace.

So Bibi simply told the truth, and shamed everyone. The world will not thank him for it.

This is an open thread.

Happy day, Widdershins!  My only granddaughter Samantha (Sissy) will wed her longtime beau Matt tomorrow at 11:30 am.  The nuptials will take place in the Treetops Ballroom at Parrot Jungle in Miami, located on a lovely barrier island just off the coast.

There will be an open twitter account with photos posted throughout at #HappilyEverWhitmore so that you can pop in on us electronically if you’d care to do so.   In the meantime, if y’all would join Sissy’s very sentimental Nana in sending lots of good wishes, cheer, and positive energy to the newlyweds, please do so below as well.  Otherwise, it’s a totally open thread.

(1) Do You Believe in Magic? – The Lovin’ Spoonful

(2) I Hope You Dance – Lee Ann Womack

(3) Stealing Cinderella – Chuck Wicks

(4) The Way You Look Tonight – The Lettermen

(5) My Wish – Rascal Flatts

(6) Marie’s Wedding – Celtic Traditional




A very interesting read and post from Bob Mann’s blog. Enjoy the read!

Originally posted on Something Like the Truth:


By Robert Mann

What should we do about the alarming trend of unwed mothers in the United States? Don’t ask Heather Mac Donald, a lawyer/journalist who writes for New York’s City Journal. Despite devoting much of her career to decrying a problem that she argues is the chief reason for crime in the United States, she’s really has nothing.

Mac Donald spoke Tuesday afternoon and evening at Louisiana State University, programs jointly sponsored by the Manhattan Institute (where Mac Donald is a resident fellow) and the LSU Department of Political Science. I moderated a discussion with Mac Donald at LSU’s Journalism Building on Tuesday afternoon.

I didn’t record Mac Donald’s talk, but she essentially gave her audience a distilled version of what she’s been writing for years, beginning with her 2003 book, Are Cops Racist, an apologia for beleaguered police officers who, Mac Donald argues, are the people…

View original 1,790 more words

Good Monday, all! I have not weighed in on the Clinton email “scandal” because, in my mind, it’s a typical smear campaign started by that time-honored Clinton-hating outlet, the New York Times (I stopped subscribing when they started running daily stories about Whitewater, and even I could see there was no “there” there). I am sorry Hillary was forced to weigh in on it, and wonder once again why she would want the job of President, knowing the multiple attacks and humiliations she’ll have to suffer just to get there…never mind what will happen when she actually wins!

And win she will, especially if this bozo is the best the Republicans can do. Just because he’s at the head of the idiot parade, doesn’t make Jeb Bush a leader.

Jeb Bush used his private e-mail account as Florida governor to discuss security and military issues such as troop deployments to the Middle East and the protection of nuclear plants, according to a review of publicly released records.

Well, surely he can’t have criticized Hillary for doing the same thing he did. No politico running for President would make such an obvious blunder.

Bush is actively considering a run for president and has sharply criticized likely Democratic front-runner Hillary Rodham Clinton for her use of a private e-mail account when she served as secretary of state. He called it “baffling” that Clinton didn’t consider the potential security risks of discussing diplomatic and national security issues by using an e-mail account not tied to a government server.An unknown number of the e-mails housed on Bush’s server were redacted or withheld from public release because they contained sensitive security issues, Bush representatives have said. Communications director Tim Miller said general policy was for Bush to discuss sensitive National Guard issues in person with only occasional briefings by e-mail that “wouldn’t contain information that should not be in the public domain.”

Of course, of course. I trust him, don’t you? Never mind that he took the server with him when he left office. He turned over 50% of the emails…eventually. Now that’s transparency, baby! And encryption from 2001 – 2007 was just as sophisticated as it is now. (wink wink)

Read the rest of this entry »

Good Saturday, Widdershins.  With only one week to go until the granddaughter’s wedding, life here at the bungalow is pretty frantic.  I’ve been in a favor frenzy, trying a few small projects of my own while attempting to keep my daughter from ending it all by frying herself on one of her many keyboards.  I have a pile of legal pads and sticky notes, she has multiple lists going on Outlook, many of which keep sailing into my inbox.  I dutifully make some notes on my yellow legal pad, and go back to my favor making chore.

I need some inspiration, so this weekend’s theme is music for the busy person.  Help me out here by posting your favorites, or any other discussion calculated to keep me from tossing legal pads at the wall.

One more week.  Just one more week.  Onemoreweek,onemoreweek,onemoreweek…………..

(1) Pressure – Billy Joel

(2) Under Pressure – Queen

(3) Freak Out (Le Freak) – Chic

(4) Super Freak – Rick James

(5) Running on Empty – Jackson Brown

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