The Widdershins

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Hello Widdershins! Yes, it’s me, MB. Dmitry is relocating again so I’m taking his spot temporarily.

As of this morning, I am officially on vacation for the first time since January 4th. I can’t tell you the relief I feel. After the vaccine this week and all the months of scare and stress, from the failed insurrection at the Capitol to the ever-looming shadow of COVID, it will be great to drive up to Sacramento, go see my dad, go play the slots, and have a couple of days at home to relax.

When was your last vacation? Are you planning one soon? Now that 30% of America has been vaccinated I know I’m starting to plan a longer one in late July.

Let’s post our favorite songs either related to vacation, or that we like to listen to while on vacation.

Open thread as always.

Tags:
Nearly 1 million women have been forced out of work during the Pandemic

About how this pandemic is affecting their jobs.

The tumultuous year of 2020 may be over, but the coronavirus pandemic and the significant financial insecurity facing many women and their families are not. As the year closed out, the nation’s employment numbers for December revealed that the nonfarm payroll job losses for the month were entirely borne by women.2 This development, while unique to December, is emblematic of the disproportionate damage to women’s employment that occurred during the year: Women and their families, who were already treading water before the pandemic,3 are bearing the brunt of this crisis.

It was already tough in America for women. Our alleged “liberation” notwithstanding, we remain the primary caregivers for children (not to mention being the ones who bear those little bundles of joy for nine months!), aging relatives and ailing spouses, causing us to take significant breaks in our careers that diminish our lifetime wealth exponentially.

This wealth gap is not news, but because it’s “just women” and as you know, we always have to pretend there’s no systemic misogyny in this country, the issue has failed to garner the attention it deserved. (The last 10 years of Republican legislative dominance made things even worse.)

But now that the good guys are in charge, something may actually get done. There’s a lot of help and hope in the American Rescue Plan for women and children. Neera Tanden, President of the Center for American Progress, will soon become the head of the Office of Management and Budget, and her organization has recently come out with several policy proposals to help achieve financial equality and security for women. Here’s the first set – this one is the newest and the most important, I believe.

Create a robust care infrastructure. Women need caregiving support if they are to return to the workforce and ensure the economic security of their families. Policymakers should:
* Establish high-quality, affordable child care and universal preschool by increasing federal assistance.69
* Guarantee all workers access to permanent, comprehensive paid family and medical leave and ensure employers provide all workers with earned paid sick leave.70
* Increase funding for long-term supports and services.71
* Ensure care workers and early educators have quality jobs with fair pay and workplace benefits and protections.72

I truly, truly hope we see some of this in our lifetimes, Widdershins. It is the dawning of the Age of Aquarius, after all.

Tawk amongst yerselves!

So many times over the past four years of hell and trauma, we wondered: What would it take for Republicans to abandon the Mango Moron?

As things went from bad to worse, many of us thought, this time they’ve got to turn away. This time they’ve got to denounce him. But nothing moved them. Kids in cages, separated unlawfully from their parents? No problem. Grabbing pussies? No problem. Removing access to health care from tens of millions of people? No problem. Obvious and frequent collusion with Russia? No problem. Foreign election interference and a suspiciously fortuitous and narrow election win? No problem. Nepotism, corruption and grift on a scale never seen before? No problem. Deporting DACA kids who will die if they lose access to America’s health care? No problem. Surrounding yourself with traitors and spies? No problem. Abandoning the Kurds to die and forcing Ukraine into a terrible bargain with Russia? No problem. Standing by while the Democrats impeached him for high crimes and misdemeanors? No problem. Letting coronavirus run rampant over our country and kill over 350,000 Americans? No problem. And finally, lying for two straight months about the election that Joe Biden and Kamala Harris won in a landslide? Not only was that not a problem – hundreds of elected Republicans eagerly signed on to claims they clearly didn’t believe at all. Because above all, there was Dear Leader – and he must always, always be defended and obeyed.

Until now.

It took a Presidential loss, the loss of the Senate, and a clear and obvious attempt TO KILL THEM (trust me, they don’t care about the whole coup/insurrection thing) to dislodge their noses from Drumpf’s giant asshole. And even now, some are still committed to sinking with the Trumptanic. I don’t know what motivates Republicans, and to some extent, I really don’t care. All I know is that finally, gloriously, Republicans are in disarray. They’re suffering an existential crisis of monstrous proportions, and it couldn’t happen to a more deplorable bunch of seditionists and traitors.

Some Republicans may think they can wash the stain of the worst President ever (the first to be impeached twice) off their hands by voting to impeach. Oh hell no. Their enablement of this deranged psychopath is, and forever will be, unforgivable. And honestly, I think some are still in denial. They think we’re all just going to move on and forgive and forget.

We will not.

Because it turns out, even though Kamala didn’t become our President, she had the right slogan for these times.

Justice was on the ballot. And now, she’s on her way.

Open thread as always.

Well, dear Shinners, it’s almost here. The day we will finally kick the GOP out of Congress and the White House.

It has been a dreadful and horrible four years. Things we never could have imagined happened. Drumpf stole the election and got away with it, robbing us of the President we deserved and voted for, Our Girl, Hillary Clinton. We saved the Affordable Care Act, but lost John McCain. Our heroes John Lewis and RBG left us when we needed them most. Notre Dame burned. We almost got into a war with Iran. Robert Mueller fizzled and no one investigated the Mango Moron’s financial ties to Russia. Patriotic public servants were forced to resign. We deserted the Kurds and allowed Russia to pay the Taliban to assassinate our soldiers. We jailed legal migrant families  and separated them from each other at the border, then pretended we didn’t know how to reunite them when the country rose up in horror. The Presidency turned into a pay-to-play money machine. Rudy Giuliani became a puppet of Putin. Three totally unqualified and disgusting Supreme Court Justices were appointed to the Supreme Court. We gave young migrant women in custody involuntary hysterectomies and tracked their menstrual cycles. And of course, the pandemic, which Drumpf actually knew about as early as January but f*cked up in the most spectacular way possible because, GRIFT.

But there have been moments of goodness as well. The elections of 2017, 2018 and 2019, in which Democrats gained more and more ground in states we had no business winning. Nancy Pelosi becoming Speaker of the House once again. #MeToo. The Women’s March and BLM. The Parkland kids and their activism. The massive waves of early voting, including record turnout for young voters and black seniors. The #trumpregrets. The Lincoln Project and Republicans for Trump.

And above all, you, dear Shinners, have helped keep me sane (well, as sane as I ever am). Thank you so much for being here with me, Fredster, DYB, GAGal and Quixote. I have no idea how I would have made it without you!

Let’s bring it home.

This is an open thread.

The signs are all there: Joe Biden’s lead in the polls is both steady and substantial. Early voting is setting records, at five times the pace of 2016. People are standing in line for 12 hours in the hot Georgia and Texas sun to vote against Drumpf and his Rethugs.

Yup, the Mango Moron is on track to lose the election, and lose it bigly. Even if I didn’t see all the other signs, there’s one that we couldn’t miss:

He’s positioning himself as the loser already.

Just look at how he’s whining and complaining about everything he’s done lately. He walked out on Lesley Stahl and 60 Minutes when the interview didn’t go his way, including the now-mandatory tweet shaming the not-coincidentally female reporter who allegedly wronged him. His first debate was an unmitigated disaster, swinging Joe’s lead from around 7 points to settle into double digits. He skipped the second one because he pouted that the debate commission was all against him and put him at a disadvantage. He’s pre-emptively saying the next debate will be completely unfair, to lower expectations when he loses. He’s not even really preparing for it because frankly, without the nasty and abusive interruptions he weaponized to try to throw Joe off his game, he. got. NOTHIN.

Trump has not undertaken the same kind of formal preparation as before the first debate, when he was peppered with questions by former New Jersey governor Chris Christie, former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani and others. Instead, he has taken some informal questions from advisers such as Jared Kushner and Hope Hicks.

Oh – you mean Covid superspreader Hope Hicks? Yeah, I think that woman has terrific judgment. Only the best people, you know.

Of course, he’s claiming the election will be rigged. RIGGED! and keeps saying the ballots are the problem. “Get rid of the ballots,” he mumbles wildly, his merkin flopping atop his pumpkin head as he wrings his tiny hands in frustration.

You know who doesn’t like ballots?

Losers.

I’m looking forward to Thursday night’s debate. It will be another nightmare for Drumpf, as all days are nightmares for him now. But for us, it will be the sign of the dawn of a new day. November 3, 2020, that is – the day the worst President in the history of our country finally loses.

This is an open thread.


Biden illustration: REBUILD WITH BIDEN

Nice picture of our gal

Madam Vice President

Our President

It’s here: QUARANTINE BINGO!

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