Posts Tagged ‘politics’

A view of Ewen Breaker of the Pennsylvania Coal Co. The dust was so dense at times as to obscure the view. This dust penetrates the utmost recesses of the boy's lungs. A kind of slave driver sometimes stands over the boys, prodding or kicking them into obedience. Location: South Pittston, Pennsylvania. 1911 January. Lewis Wickes Hine, photographer. (Library of Congress) (Right click on image to view larger)

Neither has slept well for a Fortnight, amid the house-rocking Ponderosities of commercial Drayage, the Barrels and Sledges rumbling at all Hours over the paving-Stones, the Town on a-hammering and brick-laying itself together about them, the street-sellers’ cries, the unforeseen coalescences of Sailors and Citizens anywhere in the neighboring night to sing Liberty and wreack Mischief, hoofbeats in large numbers passing beneath the Window, the cries of Beasts from the city Shambles, — Philadelphia in the Dark, in an all-night Din Residents may have got accustom’d to, but which seems to the Astronomers, not yet detach’d from the liquid, dutiful lurches of the Packet thro’ th’ October seas, the very Mill of Hell.

“Worse than London by far,” Mason brushing away Bugs, rolling over and over, four sides at five minutes per side, a Goose upon Insomnia’s Spit, uncontrollably humming to himself an idiotic Galop from The Rebel Weaver, which he attended in London just before Departure, instead of Mr. Arne’s Love in a Cottage, which would have been wiser. Smells of wood-smoke, horses, and human sewage blow in the windows, along with the noise. Somewhere down the Street a midnight Church congregation sings with a fervency unknown in Sapperton, or in Bisley, for that matter. He keeps waking with his heart racing, fear in his Bowels, something loud having just ocurr’d … waiting for it to repeat. And as he relaxes, never knowing the precise moment it begins, the infernal deedle ee, deedle ee, deedle-eedle-eedle-dee again.

When I read this passage in Thomas Pynchon’s novel Mason & Dixon (page 292), I shuddered, because I imagine this could well be the kind of life most people in this country will be living again in not too many decades if the “conservative,” anti-education, anti-progress, pro-corporation have their way.

They are willing to not just violate the law but set themselves above it in order to destroy once and for one of the most important founding principles of this country — “all men are created equal” — by denying the rights of working people to a living wage and a safe workplace.

“Pennsylvania Politics? Its name is Simplicity. Religious bodies here cannot be distinguish’d from Political Factions. These are Quaker, Anglican, Presbyterian, German Pietist. Each prevails in its own area of the Province. Till about five years ago, the Presbyterians fought among themselves so fiercely, that despite their great Numbers, they remain’d without much Political Effect, — lately, since the Old and New Lights reach’d their Accommodation, all the other Parties have hasten’d to strike bargains with them as they may, — not least of these the Penns, who tho’ Quaker by ancestry are Anglican in Praxis, — some eve say, Tools of Rome. Mr. Shippen, upon whom you must wait for each penny you’ll spend, is a Presbyterian, the City Variety, quite at ease as a member of the Governor’s Council. As for the Anglicans of Philadelphia, the periodick arrival in Town of traveling ministries such as the Reverend MacClenaghan’s have now split those Folk between traditional Pennites, and Reborns a-dazzle with the New Light, who are more than ready to throw in with the Presbyterians, against the Quakers, — tho’ so far Quakers have been able to act in the Assembly as a body, and prevail, — “

This is what it was like in the 1760s, before the United States Constitution established a barrier — the Founding Fathers thought — between Church and State. Are we going back to this?

Is it already too late to save the dream that America once was?


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I don’t visit David Seaton’s News Links nearly often enough.

The left has been buried under the rubbish that neoconservatism has dumped on it for so long that many people, including (especially?) many people of the left have forgotten what the left is.

And you should definitely read this post.

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Doctor Phlogiston, the priestley politician or The political priest / Annabal Scratch, fecit. Published as the Act directs by Bentley & Co., 1791 July 1st.  (Library of Congress).

Doctor Phlogiston, the priestley politician or The political priest / Annabal Scratch, fecit. Published as the Act directs by Bentley & Co., 1791 July 1st. (Library of Congress).

Michael Moore is fat, so you should ignore what he says.

Children having respect for their president will no longer be tolerated.

Thank heaven we don’t have anything like that here!

Nice Health Coverage You Got There. Be a Shame If Somethin’ Happened to It.

“My best advice for you is never feel bad about being a loser.”

“Why are you are Republican? Think about that for a minute.”

GOP tries to be cool with an internet tradition.

In sum, … after eight years of mindless hatred of Clinton and eight years of mindless worship of Bush — after 16 years during which anyone with a conscience got the Hell out of the Party of God — we are left with absolutely no reason whatsoever to believe that the Right is anything but terminally depraved from crotch to crown.

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Make a contribution to National Association of Free Clinics today.

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Photograph shows a crowd of African Americans and whites surrounding the Reflecting Pool and continuing to the Washington Monument.  1963 Aug. 28.  Warren K. Leffler, photographer (Library of Congress)

"Photograph shows a crowd of African Americans and whites surrounding the Reflecting Pool and continuing to the Washington Monument." 1963 Aug. 28. Warren K. Leffler, photographer (Library of Congress)

God, the lies conservatives spout when it comes to the perceived evils of giving people rights. During a good chunk of the 20th century, we were told such convenient myths about desegregation like property values would decline if black people moved into a neighborhood (a lie created by real estate agents looking to artificially deflate and then re-inflate the worth of homes), not to mention the horrors of interracial sex (which one supposes came true for racists with the rise of Barack Obama), rampant black crime in whites’ nice suburbs, and so very much more.

There’s not a nickel’s worth of difference between the mobs of white people shouting at black children walking into a newly-integrated school and the people standing up and shouting at members of Congress at town halls. And they have to be fought in much the same way, which means the government needs to ignore them.


Mostly, though, there’s only one real solution: Democrats have to have the guts to tell Republicans that they’re no longer part of the process. They have not negotiated in good faith and they’re not gonna vote for shit, no matter how watered down. It’s gotta be “Fuck off, fuckers” and bar the door and pass what needs passing.

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Measuring height of grain on government farm, Fairbanks, Alaska.  c.1916 (Library of Congress)

Measuring height of grain on government farm, Fairbanks, Alaska. c.1916 (Library of Congress)

Sarah Palin announced today that she is resigning as governor of Alaska effective “in a couple of weeks.”

(MSNBC) “We know we can affect positive change outside government at this moment in time on another scale and actually make a difference,” she said, adding that politics had become a “superficial, wasteful bloodsport.”

According to the official statement (Alaska Governor’s Office website), she’s quitting because she doesn’t see any point hanging around as a lame duck. As far as she is concerned, she has completed her term as governor despite the fact she has only actually served for two and a half years of a four-year term.

And let the party begin …

Over at Michelle Malkin’s den of iniquity, commenters are making lists of people Palin should have in her future presidential administration:

My perfect ticket:

President Mitt Romney
(we need economic help)

Vice-President Sarah Palin
(she can run for President after two terms of Mitt)

Secretary of State Newt Gingrich

Secretary of Defense Ret. Gen. Norman (stormin’ Norman) Swarzkopf

Attorney General Ann Coulter

(Imaging the sleepless nights the Liberals will have [Because that, of course, is the most important consideration for any Republican presidential administration!].)

What a great idea! Do we have more suggestions? Why, yes, we do!

A possibility I hadn’t thought of, Tim. And I absolutely love it! Would give the ‘Cuda time to expand her foreign bonafides while Mitt puts the nation back on the right track.

Add Michele Bachmann somewhere and Jeri Thompson as press secretary. Now that’s a patriotic partial staff appropriate for this Independence Day weekend.

How excited are the Malkinites? How much confidence do they have in their Sarah?

I was watching her statement on Fox, and it did not seem she had to use a tele for what she was saying. Gosh, I hope she is running. Just keep the faith Sarah.

Potomac Electric Power Co.  Automatic toaster Theodor Horydczak Collection (Library of Congress)

Potomac Electric Power Co. Automatic toaster Theodor Horydczak Collection (Library of Congress)

In response to the suggestion that Palin running for president in 2012 would guarantee President Obama winning a second term, in keeping with their unabashed respect for the office of the President and the sanctity and preciousness of human life, one commenter suggests: “You presuppose he will fill his first term…”

What’s that smell?

I think it’s toast!

* * *

The Mudflats is experiencing enormous traffic as a result of this surprise announcement and has been knocked offline. You can, however, access The Mudflats through this link until the regular site comes back up if the regular site goes down again.

* * *

Whoo! Video! Listen to Palin explain how she is resigning so that Alaskans will not waste their money having her finish her first term!

has the full video.

Ongoing Supplements:

Andrew Halcro has a post detailing a multitude of significant problems Palin was facing.

Further explication of Palin’s looming problems.

For more on Sarah’s Great Adventure, visit Progressive Alaska.

Buckeye State has a link to a Christian Science Monitor article dated July 2, 2009 detailing some of Palin’s in-state woes. It turns out that quite a few people, both in Alaska and outside, are not at all surprised that she resigned. Modernsquire points out the irony that “Palin actually boasted about getting rid of junkets as Governor, and then resigned because she can’t travel as much as she wants if she stayed Governor. ” (See, Travelgate)

Here’s video of the entire unexpurgated press conference. It is must-watch TV. [Although this is the whole press conference, I think it has been condensed, Go here to watch what I now understand to be truly the entirety of it.]

After watching the trainwreck press conference, I have to say I think she inflicted more damage on herself with that press conference than the resignation itself.

Be careful and remove all liquids from the vicinity of your electronic equipment and refrain from eating or drinking while watching to prevent possible choking accidents. Sarah Palin has some serious mental health issues. My condolences to her family.

Her friends are delusional as well:

(CSM) John Schwochert, a Palin family friend, acknowledges that the governor’s in-state popularity has diminished, but that is probably because she has settled into her job. “Everybody here’s pretty satisfied with what she’s done for the state,” he says.

If Palin doesn’t run for the US Senate next year, she is a “shoo-in” for reelection and will rise from there, Mr. Schwochert predicts. “I’m really quite sure she’s being groomed for a higher office.” [ed: ba-doom!]

Max Blumethal over at The Daily Beast reports on “Housegate” as the possible reason for Palin’s sudden resignation:

Many political observers in Alaska are fixated on rumors that federal investigators have been seizing paperwork from SBS in recent months, searching for evidence that Palin and her husband Todd steered lucrative contracts to the well-connected company in exchange for gifts like the construction of their home on pristine Lake Lucille in 2002. The home was built just two months before Palin began campaigning for governor, a job which would have provided her enhanced power to grant building contracts in the wide-open state.

SBS has close ties to the Palins. The company has not only sponsored Todd Palin’s snowmobile team, according to the Village Voice’s Wayne Barrett, it hired Sarah Palin to do a statewide television commercial in 2004.

My prediction is that should the Palins be indicted on federal corruption charges, Todd will plead out in exchange for Sarah walking away. The question then will be whether she’s smart enough finally to do that or whether she then subjects the world to her continued martyrdom.

(Cross-posted at Know Your Government)

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Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt (some time between 1902 and 1910) Frances Benjamin Johnston, photographer (Library of Congress)

Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt (some time between 1902 and 1910) Frances Benjamin Johnston, photographer (Library of Congress)

I have been spending entirely too much time goofing around in the intertoobs, but I’ve come across some really excellent blogs I wanted to bring to your attention.

All the blogs in my side bar are very fine establishments which I encourage you to visit, these are just a few of my more recent discoveries, in no particular order:

The Garlic: All The Cloves Fit To Peel was founded in February 2005 by J. Thomas Duffy. Mr. Duffy has written humor, sports and just about everything else since 1975 – sometimes even getting paid to do so! His experience includes stand-up comedy (both as writer and performer), newspaper reporting and public relations and promotional work. Mr. Duffy has authored three unpublished children’s books that are currently collecting dust. Mr. Duffy enjoys examining the possibility that the dog salivating made Pavlov ring the bell

Mr. Duffy not only writes well but he’s talking to people and writing about stuff that the other bloggers I read are not. Plus he’s got great taste in music. Did I mention he’s in Boston?

Texas is a hotbed of high quality bloggers. I Blame The Patriarchy is “the patriarchy-blaming blog that has been advancing the radical feminist views of Jill Psmith, a gentleman farmer and spinster aunt doing the butt-dance in Rattlesnake, Texas, since 2004.” I particularly enjoy her “heartwarming nature crap.”

“The website formerly known as The World’s Most Dangerous Beauty Salon, Inc.,” is owned and operatead by Susan DuQuesnay Bankston who lives “in [the] heart of Tom DeLay’s old district. It’s crazy here. No, seriously, it’s triple z crazzzy.” Susan does local and national politics like nobody’s business.

The blogger known as Dr. Isis has some fancy-sounding degrees and is a physiologist at a major research university working on some terribly impressive stuff. She blogs about balancing her research career with the demands of raising small children, how to succeed as a woman in academia, and anything else she finds interesting. Also, she blogs about shoes. In fact, she blogs a lot about shoes.

And she’s modest too.

About 80% of what Dr. Isis writes is the God’s honest truth. About 20% is total nonsense. Dr. Isis makes no claims as to which is which and neither should you.

She’s parked at the intersection of science and society but she’s not kidding about the shoes.

Danielle Belton writes about “politics, pop culture and pretentiousness” and does a very fine job of providing a window on conversations you don’t hear anywhere else. I love the Hot Topics section — “a place for readers to trade links, post topics and discuss all things “snobbish.”

The name doesn’t exactly scream “food!” but as it says in the header, Hugging The Coast is “a daily updated celebration of coastal food.” It is a treasure trove of deliciousness. The owner/operator/photographer Doug Ducap, a former New York cab driver, posts original recipes which delight the palate and the eye.

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