The prople in the hospital today…

…got sick over a week ago. While they were waiting to become ill they could have infected 2 or 3 people a day. Over the next week each day’s newly infected people continued to infect 2 or 3 more people. A week from now it will be these people going to the hospital. Soon there will be no more beds in hospitals for new cases of coronavirus. Only staying away from being infected or infecting others can prevent a chain reaction of untreated people.

In France which is a week ahead of the US the government has bumped up the fine for violating the quarantine from $140.00 to $1600.00. More violations will double the fine and could lead to a 6 month jail sentence.

This Chicago Doctor left her family and quarantine to give this speech that has become viral.

https://www.nbcchicago.com/top-videos-home/chicago-doctors-blunt-speech-about-covid-19-hits-home-across-the-country/2241880/

STAY IN PLACE – DAY 4


A street in Paris under lock down.

My French pen pal Etienne sent me this today. No traffic on the streets of Paris. I sent him a picture of four cars on 21st Avenue East with the explanation that in our small town there seemed to be a lot more traffic than in his world capital city.

My wife has a nephew in the ICU suffering from Corona-virus in Bismarck, ND. Everyone in my family is taking this pandemic seriously. I and most of my family have the good fortune to be able to ride it out with some security. Not so those people serving us when we saunter out to spread viruses we may have but can’t be sure we are spreading.

I have been assuming worst case scenarios. Until the beginning of the week I thought that was unlikely. Now I hope the concentration of scientists, the medical comunity and America’s “deep state” keep us safe from Donald “I’d give myself an A” Trump.

I went to high school with a ton of kids who would be considered the deep state by the loons like Limbaugh and Hannity. They went into public service like the generation of young people went into the Peace Corps. Deep State. That’s an insult……to my intelligence.

But I’m having fun. As I said before I have a few objectives during the plague. Maybe run for Congress again with Pete Stauber’s Trumplicans handcuffed to their divans in front of Fox News. Learn French. Write a book possibly in tandem with a campaign for Congress. And most fun live up to my failed promise to substitute teach. I had decided to simply teach in the school that my grandson’s attend. But they don’t attend it under the circumstances and I’m beginning to see that this could be the end of the school year.

So why not tempt them into doing what I’ve done all my life – peek under the hood of “What’s that all about?” Continue reading

DEPORT THE Murdoch’s

I am unable to post the video below from the Washington Post to the blog but the link below will take you the story. Scroll down till you find these three mouthpieces on Fox. Then push the arrow button and watch them spew out excrement for Rupert Murdoch’s money machine and then swallow it back up a week later.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/media/on-fox-news-suddenly-a-very-different-tune-about-the-coronavirus/2020/03/16/7a7637cc-678f-11ea-9923-57073adce27c_story.html

In the Days of Teddy Roosevelt he called it yellow journalism. I call it make people very paranoid with propaganda so that they become addicted to your codswallop the nation’s well-being be damned.

We shouldn’t be deporting just illegal aliens. We should deport purveyors of hatred spewing falsehoods. I’m sure there is at least one small patch of Australia left unburnt where the Murdoch Klux Klan could find shelter.

Trump is not Hitler……

An excellent review of “Hitler’s First 100 Days.”

One of the most enduring questions I heard when young and pondered deeply was this. How could the Jews in Germany have allowed themselves to be slaughtered without a fight? I began figuring out the answer to that as I read more books about the Holocaust and Germany in the Era of the Nazis.

I continue to learn about that era. Recently I read that after it became apparent that the Thousand Year Reich might only have a very short time to live on Hitler and his minions decided to make sure the several year Reich’s existence wasn’t wasted. They decided to double down on erasing Jews from the world for the good of the Ayran race even if Hitler and crew wouldn’t live on to enjoy the fruits of continuing Nazi success.

As to answering the initial question many sources that I’ve read spell out the slow developing awareness of most Jews that this Hitler business was not merely serious but deadly. I’d recommend two Pulitzer winning cartoon books about the experience of the Jews of Poland called Maus 1 and its successor Maus 2 by Art Spiegleman. Its illustrator/author had parents who survived the Holocaust and he wanted to understand just what happened to them and portray it as though it had been cats and mice instead.

One of my personal priorities is to collect as much information about a subject in as little time as possible. Why spend ten hours reading a novel when you can watch the Hollywoodized version in an hour and a half? I know the downside but that doesn’t stop me.

This book doesn’t cover new ground. What it does is give a step by step day by day iteration of a python suffocating its prey. Whatever else you say about Donald Trump he did not come into the Presidency with a well organized front organization prepared to suffocate America. He came in with a bullier pulpit to prance and pose for his adoring minority. His supporters are roughly the same proportion of the population as the Germans who voted for Nazi’s in 1933 but they didn’t come in with storm troopers. But maybe they did have a semi-organized propaganda machine under the Rupert Murdoch family. What they were able to do in spades was take over the Republican party and enforce pure Trumpism by purging anyone who dared to second guess Trump. Now Republican critics are too chicken to say anything.

I’ve heard such cowardice bemoaned by leftists for ages. The middle class is so comfortable they don’t want to be bothered. They just want to be protected from disturbance and maybe Trump, like Hitler, can offer it. That’s the thinking but surprise, surprise, recent events have prove it to be delusional. Trump is the Pigpen of of our national politics and the middle class is about to be bothered big time.

It was clear to me from a year before his election that Donald Trump would not be anyone that Republicans could control. But he is someone who can cut his Republican critics off at the knees. However, the timidity and crass self-dealing of Republicans could make this happen yet. Just look at those bastard Senators who sold off their hospitality stocks while telling their supporters that Coronovirus was the Democratic Party Hoax that Trump claimed it was. That’s what a Republican is today. Its become the swamp that Trump said he was going to clean up. Could such people let a Trump Administration get away with worse? Your damn right they could.

So,for those of you who haven’t had the time that you consider paging through the 300-plus pages of this book. Its not quite Cliff Notes but it should be interesting reading.

Stay in place – Day 1

This is not our first day of partial voluntary confinement. Sunday my wife reluctantly went to our church service as one of the indispensable bell ringers in the bell choir. Even so our church was only one of three Duluth Churches holding services that Sunday. On Monday we went out to buy some groceries. Tuesday there was a church meeting and Claudia participated by phone. She’s staying home now while I’ll run errands and wash my hands with lye when I come home. Well, soap. No need to overreact.

I’ve got a couple French citizens I’ve been pen pals with on my cell phone. All are in government imposed confinement. Police are at the intersections giving transients 130 euro fines. One has relatives that are physicians who are overwhelmed with sick people and beginning to withhold intubation for those who are too far gone – an effective death sentence. I asked if the sick are being sent to hospitals elsewhere that still have free beds. Apparently that is happening…..as long as remote hospitals still have beds available. My new friends are in a state of controlled shock.

Another has a nine-year-old niece who has a bad case of it. And its no longer just an overseas problem. Claudia’s nephew has been hospitalized in Bismarck, North Dakota, with a severe case that is not the flu. He should know by later today if he has corona virus. His wife came back ill from a Rhode Island sporting event with 24 young women two weeks ago. All the kids went to school the next day. That was two weeks ago and points to one of the fearsome aspects of Corona virus. It has up to a 14-day incubation period unlike our typical flues which incubate for two or three days. That’s fourteen days of walking around passing on the virus compared to 2 or 3. Here is a short story explaining the facts.

and a chart:

Today I decided to lend a hand keeping my grandson’s education from withering away. I sent them two challenges to answer questions from Sherlock Homes. One required translating a couple hundred word message in french. As they discover the answers more challenges will be sent to them via an envelope in their porch. My older grandson just called and told them that contrary to the message it was his dog that was not the best not his grandpere. He earned fifty cents. His younger brother is about to look for a translator as well. I’ve got to come up with a new challenge but I have one in mind.

I’m still working on French. I’m puttering with the books I’ve been threatening to write. I’m also thinking about how I might challenge Pete Stauber in a campaign where neither of us can gather together with crowds for fear of spreading the pandemic. I’ll have more time. No more snow sculptures for a while.

I’ll be donating blood tomorrow. I got a call from Memorial Blood bank. They are still up and running and cleaning off surfaces like mad. Folks in our church are sending messages back and fourth about how they can help. I suggested that those of us who might get a thousand dollar check we don’t need from the government make sure it gets into the hands of those who need it.

Republican Courts

Mitch McConnell’s getting worried about his losing his power to continue to making the Federal Courts a Republican ocean. He’s encouraging old Republican appointed judges to retire so that Trump can fill their offices with recent law school ideologues. https://www.courier-journal.com/story/news/politics/2020/03/16/mitch-mcconnell-urging-judges-retire-ahead-2020-election/5060303002/

What follows is an open letter from a resigning attorney of the Supreme Court to Chief Justice Roberts. It reflects my thinking since 2000 when the Supreme Court stuck its nose into Florida’s election and stopped its courts from awarding Al Gore the votes he needed to become the next president.

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/03/judge-james-dannenberg-supreme-court-bar-roberts-letter.html

Shams

Along the lines of the previous post I turned in an unusual back-to back Not Eudora column to the Reader about the Coronavirus and the Trump Administration. Forever, I’ve been a once every two weeks contributor. I begged to have the Reader note that last week’s column Arizona Highways (though complete on the website) chopped off the last paragraph in the published paper.

This week’s coming title will be: Our Season of Anne Frank

American Shams

Salon ran a short thoughtful piece that began with the government showing flexibility where it once was arbitrary. This piece in Salon is well worth the read. Link below…It begins…

Maybe it will be the hand sanitizer that finally exposes the sham.

The Transportation Security Administration announced Friday that due to the coronavirus outbreak, it’s waiving the familiar 3.4-ounce limit for liquids and gels—for hand sanitizer only.* You may now bring a bottle of Purell as large as 12 ounces onto the plane to assist in your constant sanitizing of yourself, your family, your seat, your bag of peanuts, and everything else. All other liquids and gels, however, are still restricted to 3.4 ounces.

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/03/coronavirus-tsa-liquid-purell-paid-leave-rules.html

Arizona Highways

It didn’t take me long on my recent travels to Arizona’s sunshine to realize it would be the topic of my next Reader column in Not Eudora. I jotted down a dozen ideas the night before we left and pulled them into a column on a flight between Phoenix and Chicago. I wasn’t sure I’d get it to the Reader but things worked out. They even got four of three edits I asked for in one last hasty email I sent them. The first three were mistakes I caught after sending the column as an attachment to them. The fourth was a correction I hadn’t asked for. I wrote that actor, Jack Palance, was the bad guy in the story. When I read my column just now I saw that the Reader had made a terrible fourth correction. My column now read that the gunslinger was played by actor Lee Marvin. Lee Marvin!!!!! How could they do that to me?

I owe the Readers a little more love. They were right. Jack Palance made a great bad guy but that was in some other movies. I shouldn’t be surprised. The folks behind the Reader are old movie buffs having restored Duluth’s “original art deco theater, The West.” And Marvin did play heavies. He was a great heavy in The Ballad of Cat Ballou. He was even better as the hero in that movie. The last time my late father-in-law visited us in Duluth I suggested he might enjoy the movie. He never watched movies but for my sake he watched this one. He had a lot of good laughs. Someday I’ll add it to the oldie movies I’ll have my grandsons watch.

“The Duke” with sidekick, “The Three Ears Kid”, photo by Claudia Welty

It begins:

When I was a Cold War kid I paged through a lot of Arizona Highways. It was a popular magazine in dentist offices. The eye-popping colors were dismissed by drab Soviet critics as unrealistic American propaganda. That was high praise indeed but entirely false. My cell phone is crammed full of similar pictures. Read the rest

five of six Duluth School Board members choose Trumpian secrecy

All except my old buddy Alanna Oswald…..

From tomorrow’s Duluth News Tribune:

The Minnesota state statute is quite clear. Once a body hiring to fill a public position like school district superintendent chooses its candidates to interview, the candidates’ names are public record and must be released.

“Promptly,” Mark Anfinson, an attorney for the Minnesota Newspaper Association and an expert on public-access and open-meeting laws, said in an interview Wednesday with the News Tribune Opinion page.

So it appears the Duluth School Board and its superintendent-search consulting firm violated state data-practice laws Tuesday by picking six candidates to interview and then not publicly releasing their identities….

Read it all here:

https://www.duluthnewstribune.com/opinion/editorials/4995203-Our-View-Learn-the-law-School-Board

Imperfect Union

I have been reading this book to Claudia for the past couple weeks. Steve Inskeep is as instructive a historian as he is as an NPR reporter. This book was pitched as something that would help explain what’s going on now in our nation’s politics because……as everyone has heard…..What goes around comes around……or …..the only thing that never changes is change itself.

BTW – John C Frémont was the Republican Party’s first nominee for President in 1856. Abe was still thinking about joining it that year. Bonus for me, Frémont parlez vous-ed Francais. (the “-ed” is mine and a terrible blasphemy. I apologize for it.)

And I talk politics with my French pen pal

Even as I tear my hair out with my ex brother in law I’ve got other political discussions started in one case with a new pen pal of sorts in France. S is attempting to improve her English while I work on my French. She’s quite competent with English but I wonder if, like me, she sees what she has just written and it looks funny to her as my French looks to me. I know I’m getting the correct words out but what I see is not a language that jumps into my eyes and brain fully formed. I have to think it out like a small child with his first book. And speaking French…. Don’t get me started! I heard a more knowledgeable person explain that learning French is like learning two languages the written and the spoken. I agree.

At any rate, S who thinks her fellow French citizens are soft and demanding compared to the Germans who just do what has to be done, was explaining how her President Macron has created a new political party. After reading my piece in the Reader she suggested that America needs a third party.

Here’s what I wrote back to her in French (which was greatly aided with the use of a google translator)

Aux États-Unis, des tiers se matérialisent tous les dix ou deux ans. J’ai voté pour le membre du Congrès John Anderson en 1980 au lieu de Jimmy Carter ou Ronald Reagan, mais il est difficile pour eux de gagner.

And what does it mean? Using the translator to turn it back into English this is what I wrote to S.:

In the United States, third parties materialize every ten or two years. I voted for Congressman John Anderson in 1980 instead of Jimmy Carter or Ronald Reagan, but it is difficult for them to win. (That awkward “every ten or two years,” is the work of a translator dealing with my faulty French.

Then I added in English to challenge her English reading skills:

“Maybe my preference was only possible in the Cold War. Back then there were only 2 parties with soft support. Half of America was in the Middle and could swing either way. That meant that both parties pitched their appeals to the center not to their extremes. Now there is almost no middle ground and both parties have to keep their extremists happy.”

Warrenism 2

Brad took issue with Mr. Wilkerson’s NY Times opinion piece. This was how I defended Wilkerson’s point of view:

Brad,

Just because the Congressional eunuchs in the GOP have surrendered tyrannical power to the corrupt chuckle head in the White House doesn’t mean they will let a President Sanders do the same thing. One thing Republicans got when they let the Southern Dems into the party was the Dixiecrats long game which they had been honing starting in the 1830s as they realized slavery made them a near permanent Congressional minority. That’s why the Missouri Compromise, the Mexican American War, the Compromise of 1855, the Dred Scot decision and the issue of Popular Sovereignty were such big deals leading up to the Civil War.

Starting with the shelving of Reconstruction they started their long game again. Their allies have always been the corrupt industrial interests in the North that were Republican oriented.

LBJ knocked them back on their heels again but with the Reagan revolution and the Deep South’s Republican conversion the GOP gained the skills augmented by Koch money and big tech to create the poverty you and I see all around us.

Warren may have blown it trying to be “electable” but her strategy was long term. But she or any other Democratic President will need a Congress in Democratic hands for a decade to accomplish that mission.

She needed what the GOP’s gamers got in the 2010 election and subsequent reapportionment after the subsequent national census – huge gains in all legislatures to rig and gerrymander the system. The 2020 election is that election. Bernie’s allure was proven to be shallow after the also-rans gave up before Super Tuesday. His youth vote was pathetic.

Only the non-threatening Biden will give Democrats the down ballot votes to take back the Senate and the legislatures. That will enable them to claw back the election laws away from the corporatized cretins in today’s Paula White driven, get-rich-quick-and-stupid GOP.

Warrenism 1

My ex brother-in-law, a staunch Bernie supporter, is reluctantly coming to grips with a Biden Candidacy.We have had many spirited debates.He recently sent a Facebook post with a news story from The Hill reporting that polls show that 40% of voters today support Republicans in general but only 35% support Democrats.

To this I simply replied “Scary.” A sorry. Uninspired answer.

Brad replied by insinuating that Biden was not up to the job of dealing with all of the criminals overrunning the Trump administration. Here is my reply to Brad:

Saying “scarry” was a placeholder reply. I’d seen the headline before. I still haven’t read the story. I hope the poll is an outlier. If it’s not it will be evidence that our politics has become dangerously poisonous and in desperate need of a good cleansing. I like Sanders. His strenuous arguments for change will be needed. I think his cures are antique and miss the target we should be aiming at. This opinion piece reflects my thinking. https://nyti.ms/2TIteq5

Back in the Saddle again

So to speak. I posted twice from Arizona while I was away. It was a good vacation. Actually it was a good second vacation as I returned from a short Disney cruise one week earlier. Having posted very little for the past few weeks I’m please my eight loyal readers kept visiting despite having so little fresh food at my blog buffet.

I finished my Not Eudora column on the flight home last night and bent over backwards to get its sent to the Reader for this week’s issue. I scarcely had the bandwith at O’Hare field to get it sent then had to send some corrections afterward. As promised earlier its titled Arizona Highways.

At noon today I dropped by the now silent Duluth offices of Bloomberg’s campaign to express my gratitude to Josh and Nicole for their part in moving the primary season into the hands of someone poised to give Trump a run for his money. They were however gone. And from what I’ve read in the news, they were dropped a little unceremoniously from the campaign by Mr. Bloomberg against the expectations that they and other Bloomberg staffers had a guaranteed job harrying Trump until November.

Now that my vacations are over I intend, once again, to begin writing books. Oh Harry. Please don’t disappoint yourself again. Get to work.

I kept up with the news all the way through Arizona and it will be hard to tear myself away to write. Even the blog beckons. I’m discomfited by all the trolling of Democrats in Facebook. Trump loons and Ruskie trolls have perfected their primary work of pissing off Democrats. I suspect half of the apparent Bernie lovers are fakes but real ones not Trump’s Fake News fakes.

Among the latest tactics is to assure Biden supporters that Biden has lost it and is in full blown dementia. One such post ended with the oblique comment “What would Eugene V. Debs do?” I’m sorry but mentioning the imprisoned socialist who got a million votes for President in 1916 while in jail is just the sort of smart-ass comment a recent college poly sci drop out would throw around. A true Bernie supporter could give a damn about that factoid.

At any rate I’ll offer up my Facebook comment on the subject of Biden’s alleged unfitness for the Presidency, to wit:

Winston Churchill may never have said this but I have always liked this quote attributed to him. “Americans can always be counted on to do the right thing…after they have exhausted all other possibilities.”

I’m for the failing Biden. He should lead us back from the abyss over 4 years before winking out. Does America need a shot of Sanders. You betcha it does. Its 50 years overdue. But lots of things take time. Black voters who are still decades away from being treated as equals and a century away from overcoming 400 years worth of disadvantages collectively understand this. Four more years of Trump is their biggest impediment. America was hardly ready for a black President. Apparently Americans still would prefer a rat bastard to a socialist. I don’t like it either but don’t think I am an idiot for understanding this ridiculous morass and acting rationally in supporting Biden.

To which yet another troll exulted in Biden’s dementia. I added this:

BTW – Ronald Reagan was showing serious signs of a confused intellect in his last term as president and it was a great success. More so than his first term.

Reagan was a real President who did his best to be everybody’s President even if you didn’t care for his priorities.

Arizona Highways

I’ve kept up my French in Arizona for the past 11 days but given up blogging. I’m going to the blog today as I’ll be returning home tomorrow and my old ways. I’ve got to get back in practice and the headline here is what I’ll title the next Not Eudora column which I’ll be writing tomorrow on the plane.

I’m preparing for that column by sharing here a couple photos and thoughts about Arizona based on my trip. This is mostly to assure my eight loyal readers that I have not abandoned them. It would be a lovely time now to heap abuse on the big hands of our Commander-in-Chief with his botching of the corona virus epidemic; the historic fall in stocks and the getting-it-together of the fractious Democrats, but my critique would pale in comparison with others I’ve been reading. I will just share that my vote for Bernie or Joe will be ever more gladly cast next November from France where I’ll be soaking up French in situ.

So a couple of photos from Arizona:

1st day Bisbee, AZ – 11 mi. N of Mexico border. An arty town with a sense of humor about itself. 100 years ago the town fathers crammed a dozen box cars with union men and shipped them out of town at gun point warning them never to return.

2nd day, Tucson AZ, Saguaro NP Zoo A great zoo in the most bio diverse desert on Earth.

3rd day, a wedding mixed Jewish/Christian ceremony. The bride’s grandmother was talked out of marrying a Jewish gentleman about 70 years earlier.

4th day, Sedona, AZ, A picturesque Hollywood western town with kool bronze statues abounding. Here’s an old cowhand spellbinding children with western poppycock. Apropos First of three lovely nights. Some shopping, sight seeing and one helluva canyon tour in pink jeeps.

Days 7-12, Bullhead City, AZ, first stop Oatman, AZ, western trinkets, gunfighters, donkey’s galore.

Colorado River cruise courtesy of my Brother-in-law.

Domestic canid

Not so domestic canid, “Wylie”

Got a brief glimpse of his nemesis “Meep, Meep Roadrunner” that morning in a toney part of Bullhead City. No hard life on the banks of a river for him.

Sign of human neglect in a nearby wash surrounded by the homes of Snowbirds.

Sunset the night before the full “Worm Moon” of the local SW Indians when the worms come out of the winter soil

The three eared hombre

If I hadn’t mentioned it before I am traveling once again. Today I am in Sedona, Arizona, and reading about the corona virus, the falling stock market and the thinning of the ranks in the Democratic presidential nomination process. To distract myself I have been hobnobbing with dead movie stars. I met John Wayne beyond the grave and one of his celluloid sidekicks – the three eared hombre.

BTW We just watched his first Sedona movie. The Angel and the Badman. It was very charming.

2020-03-02_05-13-41

The official source for all the blather of the eccentric Harry Welty – Duluth School Board member, off and on, since 1995. He does his best to live up to Mark Twain's assessment: "First God created the idiot. That was for practice. Then he invented the School Board."