The Widdershins

Heh, my reaction to so many things lately

Good Weekend Widdershins!

I wrote that *some* of the dark times are over.  Of course I’m referring to my and dear chatblu’s favorite thing – football and especially college football.  For some of the other dark things, eh, not so much on the over part.

This will be a different weekend post because frankly the last few days have seen my fuse get shorter and shorter.  Right now I would put myself right up there next to the Arkema Chemical Plant in Crosby Texas.

I have just a few things that I had bookmarked for reference so this will be a good time to use them and then I can delete the bookmarks.

White Nationalist Richard Spencer and “the money”

Have you ever wondered how it is that White Nationalist, David Duke wannabe Richard Spencer can afford to traipse around the country stirring shit up wherever he goes?  Hard work?  Made a killing in the stock market?  Won the lottery perhaps?  Actually no, none of the above.

Richard Spencer gets his money partly from, ahem, the government and an old standby commodity-cotton.

Spencer likes to say that “murica” was built by white people.  In fact he was on (all of all shows) NewsOneNow with Roland Martin when he said “White people ultimately don’t need other races in order to succeed,”  I’m sure it was after he picked himself off the floor that Martin asked him “Didn’t slaves help build America? Wasn’t the nation’s 19th-century economic boom propelled by the slave labor that produced the world’s cotton on Southern plantations?”  Spencer was ready with a reply:

America’s rise was “not through black people” and “has nothing to do with slavery,” Spencer retorted. “White people could have figured out another way to pick cotton,” he said. “We do it now.”

And Spencer should really know because “Spencer, along with his mother and sister, are absentee landlords of 5,200 acres of cotton and corn fields in an impoverished, largely African American region of Louisiana”.  (it’s in north Louisiana)  Further: The farms, controlled by multiple family-owned businesses, are worth millions: A 1,600-acre parcel sold for $4.3 million in 2012.

Even better is this little tidbit:

The Spencer family’s farms are also subsidized by the federal government. From 2008 through 2015, the Spencers received $2 million in US farm subsidy payments, according to federal data.  (bolding/italics mine)

He has received lots of attention as a leader of the so-called alt-right movement—particularly after he drew Nazi salutes at an event celebrating Donald Trump’s election.  But he never did say how he was able to do all of this flitting about.  The finances of his nonprofit think tank, the National Policy Institute, are a mystery; the organization hasn’t filed a public report since 2013. The Los Angeles Times reported that the IRS revoked the institute’s tax-exempt status.

Spencer dropped out of the PhD history program at Duke University.  While in the program he said he ” was compelled by critiques of multiculturalism and political correctness and by demographic data indicating that whites are en route to minority status in the United States.”

As the MJ article says, ” the Spencer family’s business interests and geographic history suggest a different possible lineage for Richard Spencer’s racist politics. The family’s farm holdings are a legacy of its ties to the Jim Crow South, passed down by Spencer’s grandfather, who built the business during the turbulent civil rights era.”

“Spencer declined in an interview this week to discuss how much money he personally receives from cotton farming and government subsidies, and whether that income funds his political activities.”  Yeah because revealing that his money that lets him travel the country comes from the sweat and work of field hands in Louisiana might not be the image he wants known.  But he’s also been quoted as saying:

“I’m going to navigate the world as it is, and I’m not going to be a pauper.”

Well!  That sums it up pretty well.  “Yes I’ll take the money we get from cotton farms but no I’m not involved in such icky labor and stuff.”

There’s much more in the article such as this little morsel:
One Spencer family farming company, which holds title to 400 acres of land, is called the Poor Richard Partnership.

Ah I tell ya, sometimes these people, they just crack me up.  Just too clever by half.

This went longer than I meant but I have two other pieces for you to check out that will be eye-openers.

From Vox:

Psychologists surveyed hundreds of alt-right supporters. The results are unsettling

And from WaPo:

The road to hate: For six young men, Charlottesville is only the beginning

Oh and one last note:

 

Okay, after all of that vile crap we need a palate cleanser as chat would say.  So here is some lovely Ralph Vaughn Williams.  I’ve used this before but it is a calming and restorative piece to listen to. (I have no idea what that World Rose stuff is about, I just wanted a good version of the piece.)

Of course it’s an open thread so what’s on your minds today?

 

 

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Good morning Widdershins,

Hurricane Harvey has been a massive catastrophe. As I was writing this on Tuesday evening, a levee in a county south of Houston has breached. “NOTICE: The levee at Columbia Lakes has been breached!! GET OUT NOW!!!” Brazoria County said on Twitter on Tuesday morning. Many trillions of gallons of water have fallen. The entire Texas National Guard has been deployed. Meanwhile president Dump and his wife (wearing 4” heels) went to visit and Dump wondered at the size of the crowd assembled. “What a crowd, what a turnout,” he declared in Corpus Cristi. Meanwhile Glenn Thrush of the New York Times declared that Dump “used the dulcet, reassuring and uplifting language of prior presidents” when speaking of the disaster, in an article with the headline: “Harvey Gives Trump A Chance to Reclaim Power to Unify.” I assume that’s when Dump wasn’t wearing his $40 hats his company sells while making appearances in Texas. The New York Times has reached peak dumpster fire in their apologia and legitimization of Dump. Just a few days ago their reporters (you know the ones) were screaming on twitter that everything is Hillary’s fault. (I’m sure I’m wrong about it being peak. Bigger dumpster fires are yet to come.) The only person at the Times with any sense of decency is Paul Krugman who sent out a series of tweets pointing out the media screwed up. Sadly the political desk at the Times, headed by Dean Baquet, doesn’t listen to Krugman.

Speaking of Dean Baquet, read this remarkable article about Baquet, the media, Melania Trump’s plagiarized speech, and Meredith McIver, who took responsibility for stealing Michelle Obama’s words. Is McIver an actual person? Who knows! Even though the Times, among others, wrote glowingly about her, nobody seems to have met this woman in at least 10 years. And Baquet thinks the reporter who asked to confirm that someone at the Times actually has met this woman is a “moron.”

…we really don’t know if Meredith McIver is real, alive, and well, or not — she may very well be. But I know the explanations from Team Trump for what happened at the time were completely ridiculous — one involved Sean Spicer and a My Little Pony box (please, Google it); I know that other people searching for Meredith have received anonymous threats; I know that a phone conversation I had with Meredith’s alleged ex-boyfriend, Stephen Palitz, led to far more questions than answers; I know that fake social media accounts for Meredith popped up immediatley after she accepted blame…and suddenly and inexplicably began communicating in Russian before disappearing again.

A few months ago, Arthur Sulzberger, publisher of the NYTimes, fired the paper’s public editor. The public editor was originally hired after the paper’s disastrous coverage leading up to the Iraq War. Now Sulzberger declared the role was no longer necessary because the public would keep his reporters honest. On Tuesday evening Peter Daou, a former Clinton staffer who is very vocal in his defense of Clinton on twitter, announced he has now been blocked by 3 major Times reporters, including Thrush and Haberman. How does one keep reporters honest – when reporters block you?

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What’s on your minds Widdershins? This is an open thread.

Good Monday, all. I want to send warm Widdershin hugs, thoughts and prayers to everyone who is living through the effects of Hurricane Harvey. I am not sure I can really add much in the way of coverage or links, or even original thoughts…but I did see this on Google and thought you might be interested.

Check out the Disaster Philanthropy Organization, a non-profit that directs donations to the greatest effect. It’s in partnership with Google – you can donate there too. http://disasterphilanthropy.org/who-we-are/google/

And now, to the man-made disaster we now face every day. I am referring, of course, to The Orange Crusher himself, Der Drumpfenfuhrer.

The fallout continues from his disastrous reaction to the Charlottesville terrorist attack by American Nazis. And he keeps compounding and doubling down on his obvious racism, misogyny and irrational hatred of LGBT. His latest horrific decision was to pardon a creature of extraordinary, retrograde evil, “Sheriff Joe” Arpaio. When you read even a fraction of what this inbred animal got away with for decades in Arizona, it’s hard to even comprehend what must be in his heart and mind…the blackness and self-loathing that infects him must be all-consuming.

And the Republicans are starting to run away faster and faster; trial balloons are starting to float about the 25th Amendment.

I will say this: I believe very strongly that Drumpf will exit by the end of the year. He has started to prepare for his resignation. Do you really think that Steve Bannon and Seb Gorka left because of General Kelly? Come on now. They should have left months ago. They left to prepare Trump TV. If you read Gorka’s resignation letter, he made exactly the argument our terribly unpopular Preznit will soon make.

“It is clear to me that forces that do not support the MAGA promise are—for now—ascendant within the White House,” Gorka wrote. “As a result, the best and most effective way I can support you, Mr. President, is from outside the People’s House.”

In other words:

“I tried to MAGA, but Congress/The Fake Media/Hillary/Librulz wouldn’t let me! I can do much better as an advocate for your voice. Come watch me on Trump TV, and it’s only $49.99 a year!”

With this option, he’s completely covered no matter what, you see.  He’s been setting it up for a very long time, even before the election when he complained it was rigged. (It was rigged – in his favor.) If he gets impeached or removed via the 25th Amendment, there are still going to be freaks who want to see Trump be Trump, and will pay through the nose to do so.

So there’s not much we can do about this for now except show up and try to help Democrats re-take Congress in 2018, because Pence, although he sounds much more sane than Drumpf, is both dirty AND insanely conservative. With a Democratic Congress, we have the ability to stop the insanity and turn it around.

I know a lot of us are already doing quite a bit of activism to help hurry this outcome along. Today, I have one thing in particular to highlight. Our friend Janicen, who has largely left blogging for live action (GO Janicen!!), reached out to me to ask if I wanted to attend an upcoming event in Brooklyn, and whether I would publicize it. It’s to raise money to support Virginian Democratic candidates. I figured some Widdershins might want to join, so if you want to learn more, please click here for more information.

In the meantime, hang in there, everyone. It’s always darkest before the dawn.

This is an open thread.

Good weekend to you Widdershins!

I hope that you are having a good weekend.  Let’s pause for a few moments and send some kind thoughts to those people on the Texas Gulf Coast.  According to some of the latest model runs at the time I’m writing this, they could be dealing with this for several days.

I thought today I would share some political cartoons I came across.  The sad part is that while we probably indeed need to laugh at some of these, it is indeed…well sad because some of these are actual things.  And I still find it hard to believe that while the nation is concerned with Harvey in the Gulf, the orange turd decided it’s a good day to pull his stunts.

(Sigh) We used to be able to look forward to Fridays as the start of the weekend.  Now we’re going to start dreading each and every end of the week – not knowing what the hell the talking yam is going to do to ruin it for us.

I hope you enjoy the cartoons and they are in no particular order.

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Take the comments and conversation in any direction you wish.

 

 

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Good morning Widdershins!

Because of technical glitches which I can’t even understand – the comments closed in the previous thread. So here’s a very super duper quick post of no importance whatsoever, so we can keep commenting.

Aside from, you know, the awful hurricane in Texas (Ted Cruz and John Cornyn want federal aid…… let that sink in), Dump has pardoned the evil Joe Arpaio (so the media is falling over itself screaming “But Marc Rich!” because false equivalencies and “Clinton did it” is their natural state), Nazi Sebastian Gorka was “fired” from the White House (he claims he resigned) and last heard from, he was in talks with Breitbart to work there. Because, naturally.

What fresh hell will this weekend bring?

Discuss amongst yourself!

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Hello Widdershins,

We have survived another week without a nuclear apocalypse. Yay? Doesn’t mean another one won’t come tomorrow. The 45h Dump is escalating the war in Afghanistan (hey, remember when Rita Skeeter Maureen Dowd wrote a whole column arguing that Dump was a “dove” and Hillary was the “hawk?” LOL yeah.) John McCain and Lady Graham couldn’t be happier about more war. And a twitter war broke out between the NYTimes Twins (Thrush and Haberman) and people with a brain, many of whom happened to be Clinton supporters, but not exclusively, after Thrush went on a sexist tirade listing all the things Hillary did wrong during the election. This is after a Harvard study showed that “her emails” was the single most covered story in the media, which perhaps was unwise of the media. But Times Twins found other reasons for the 2016 disaster, among them that Hillary flew home for dinner every night of the campaign (some have disputed that), that she spoke too much (he actually said that) during the campaign, waged a silly war on the media, and should have listened to people more, and that Huma Abedin should have fired. These are things Glenn Thrush tweeted and Haberman backed up, and then Jonathan Martin jumped in too. I’ll just leave the topic right there because I’m getting palpitations right now.

We are also learning that the DNC is having a hard time raising money. Liberal organizations are not having difficulties. Individual political campaigns, like Jon Ossoff’s for example, and organizations like ACLU. So liberals are giving away a lot of money – they’re just steering clear of the DNC. Perhaps, possibly, just maybe the reason is Bernie Sanders? The disastrous “Unity Tour” and endless screaming by Sanders proxies like Nina Turner, as well as DNC’s attempts to reach white people, at the expense of its actual base (women and people of color)  is not going to bring out the donations. And Sanders supporters are not going to start sending their $27 to the DNC. So Tom Perez has some decisions to make. Stick with Bernie and his Bros, and starve DNC of its base money, or throw Bernie into the trash where he belongs.

New Republic also notes that

“Obama and Clinton are both high-profile Democrats and neither have been helping the DNC raise much money,” Beckel said. There is a finite amount of resources, and it’s possible that Obama and Clinton are pulling the deep donor networks that they have cultivated away from the party itself. (Obama, however, has reportedly been privately advising Tom Perez.)

And in really fun news: there’s a state of war between Dump and McTurtle.

It seems that the President personally berated McConnell the last time they did talk, on August 9, repeating his complaints about the Senate and about the mild criticism its leader aimed at him. And the two pols have been carrying out a proxy war via Trump’s attacks on, and McConnell’s vigorous support for, Republican senators who have disrespected POTUS, notably Arizona Sen. Jeff Flake, who recently published a book that rejected Trump’s claim to be a legitimate conservative.

Per the failing NY Times, the Dump/McTurtle conversation on August 9th turned into a cursing shouting match. Lordy I hope there are tapes!

What’s on your mind Widdershins?

Good Monday, all. Today, the sun will be completely eclipsed by the moon, a very rare event indeed. Even rarer, it seems, is what has been going on since the horrible terrorist attack in Charlottesville: people are starting to talk about the real reason people voted for Drumpf, the true secret of his appeal.

Two years too late.

Roxane Gay wrote this painful editorial in the New York Times last week. I think she speaks for a lot of us, not just here at TW, but all over America.

A week ago, in Charlottesville, Virginia, white men assembled to rage for a world long lost – one where their mediocrity was good enough. These were men emboldened by a President who shares their odious beliefs.

I’ve watched in horror as they’ve been energized by his campaign and his presidency. It’s possible that hate like this would have been on the rise anyway, given eight years of the Obama presidency and, animus towards Hillary Clinton. But now we don’t have hate on the fringe; we have it reinforced in the White House…

…Back in November, pundits began attributing Mr. Trump’s win to “economic anxiety,” because they were unwilling to face the blatant racism that fueled his popularity. Look where that thinking has brought us. Everyone who says, “This is not America” or “This is not us” is being willfully ignorant of both the past and the present. We all need to acknowledge that yes, this is indeed us, the very worst of us…

Roxane’s eloquent anguish resonates so strongly with me. When that evil orange turd “won” the election, I felt as though the entire country had lost its mind. Instead of electing the first woman President, who would lead us where we need to go so badly, Drumpf voters had embraced a sexually twisted, misogynistic, racist monster because they didn’t care what he would do to this country, as long as he made them feel good about themselves. His language of hate and fear was like poisoned music, a siren’s song telling them that at last, at last, they could blame someone else for their useless and bitter lives. Drumpf made it clear to white men that it really IS women and people of color and Jews and LGBT who are responsible for your pain and suffering, and not only that, it’s good and right for you to think it, and say it, and shout it out loud. Who could resist such a validation? And as a result, instead of the world we all knew would arise with Hillary’s Presidency, a world where #LoveTrumpsHate, a new, awful world seemed to arise.

But was it really that new? No. It had only been hiding, lurking like a tumor, inside of the Republican base. And it’s at the heart of all of their policies, for the past few decades. As Russ Feingold wrote this weekend,

The lesson from Charlottesville is not how dangerous the neo-Nazis are. It is the unmasking of the Republican party leadership. In the wake of last weekend’s horror and tragedy, let us finally, finally rip off the veneer that Trump’s affinity for white supremacy is distinct from the Republican agenda of voter suppression, renewed mass incarceration and the expulsion of immigrants…

Words mean nothing if the Republican agenda doesn’t change. Governors and state legislatures were so quick to embrace people of color in order to avoid the impression, they too share Trump’s supreme affinity for the white race. But if they don’t stand up for them they are not indirectly, but directly enabling the agenda of those same racists that Republican members were so quick to condemn via Twitter.

Gerrymandering, strict voter ID laws, felon disenfranchisement are all aimed at one outcome: a voting class that is predominantly white, and in turn majority Republican.

This is the hard truth that we don’t want to face. We all have Republican friends, relatives and colleagues. We’d like to think that they vote Republican because they want lower taxes and “small government,” whatever the hell that means. Unfortunately, though, those reasons can no longer be used to mask the hatred that hides in the heart of the GOP. It’s become a heart of darkness, and anyone who votes Republican now, shows that they have darkness in their hearts as well.

As Drumpf retreats further and further from a country whose people are loudly protesting what he stands for, vastly outnumbering the Neo-Nazis in Boston by tens of thousands, there is beginning to be a wide recognition that he cannot last much longer as President of the United States. But when he goes, and takes all the nightmare Cabinet members and Javanka with him, and probably takes Pence down too..what then? Are we going to pretend he never happened, that he was a terrible aberration, and that the “real” Republicans never wanted him in the first place?

I am quite sure the media, addicted to equivalency as they are, will try to smooth this horrorshow over and make it seem as though the Republican Party temporarily lost its mind to der Drumpfenfuhrer, but is now sane. We cannot let them do it. We must continue to hold them responsible and accountable for what they’ve done to our democratic institutions and the mental and moral health of our country.

We’ve done really well after a blow that could have crushed us, Widdershins. Together, the Resistance has halted the destruction of ACA, the tax cuts for the wealthy and the infrastructure whatever that, I’m sure, would have done nothing but shovel more money into billionaires’ pockets. But we won’t be finished until we have dragged the racists and misogynists, kicking and screaming, into the 21st Century.

I think we can do it, don’t you?

This is an open thread. Enjoy the “oldie” but goodie below.

Keep Up

Atrocities Documented:

What the F*ck Just Happened?!

Victories Won:

Your Victories Against Drumpf!

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Blog Archive

September 2017
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Our 2016 Ticket!

Our girl is gonna shine

Busted: Glass ceiling

HRC bumper sticker

She’s thinking “Less than 2 weeks I have to keep seeing that face”

Yeah I can make it

The team we’re on

Women’s March on Washington!

Right-click the pic for more info

Kellyanne Conway’s new job

So similar

Take the kids to work? NO!

3 turds control fate of healthcare for millions

That moment when *your* pussy gets grabbed

You go gurl! h/t Adam Joseph

***Hurricane Harvey support/donations***

Quick links for donations.

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Charity Navigator Harvey Page:

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What Cassidy/Graham bill would do: