Family is the most important thing

Although most mass murders happen within families,  as a ten second scan of the internet will show [1], fratricide, parricide and filicide are not the most common forms of murder, thankfully.    (Although 100% of all incest happens in families, by definition.)    In many families lifelong grudges stand in for murder.   My family, for example, has generally practiced this humane alternative to actual killing (those few outliers who survived the actual mass killings of 1943, that is).    Even within devastated, crazy, dysfunctional families, the common refrain is that there is nothing more important than family– except possibly keeping your insane fucking aunt as far from us as possible.

Sekhnet’s mother’s best friend for many years (they had a terrible falling out years later) was the sister of a woman married to a dynamic first generation Italian man named Uncle Tony.   Uncle Tony and his wife had no children of their own, but exerted a great influence on generations of their nieces and nephews.   They hosted them every summer at their summer place near the beach, put them to work and instilled their values deep within these kids.   The youngest of these kids are now in their seventies, having passed the values on to their children and grandchildren.

The third weekend in August every year, for the last 65, is the Italian Picnic.   Family and friends would arrive on Long Island by the dozens, pitch tents, sleep in cars, in curtain-divided cubicles in the original cabin with Uncle Tony and his wife, in the “overflow”, a handmade structure in the back that housed an additional ten or so in various compartments.  Behind the overflow was the outdoor shower.   The sign over the toilet read “in these isles of sun and fun, we never flush for number one.”

Sekhnet attended the first Italian Picnic “in utero” as she likes to say.   She went that first time as a four month-old fetus (perhaps she was still an embryo, I’d have to look it up) and has missed only one or two in the following six and a half decades. I’ve been going every year since 2001, when I drove Sekhnet and her aged parents to the picnic when Sekhnet had a medical problem that prevented her from driving the 80 miles or so.    

I was welcomed warmly and instantly by this large, gregarious family.   It was beautiful to be in a gathering where everyone seemed to genuinely love, or at least like, each other.   The food was great, the controlled chaos of the festivities was cool, and there were several colorful characters that made these picnics a lot of fun.

Over the years I got to know a unique character named Louie, a truly larger than life nephew of Uncle Tony’s.   He was a jovial, powerfully built former cop with flowing white hair, impressive facial hair, an even more impressive belly and a great talent for storytelling.

Some years he’d drink everyone under the table (the table was in a thatched tiki bar across the dirt yard from the main house) while telling an endless series of detailed and often very funny stories.   Some years he didn’t drink at all, like the year he fasted, passing up the dozens of trays of delicious Italian delicacies, all that pasta, and seafood, and lasagna, and all the rest, including the table of homemade desserts.  He explained that he was doing this for his self-discipline and also as part of a purifying detox he’d been doing for a few days.   Early the next morning he broke his purifying fast with an enormous bacon sandwich he devoured standing over the outdoor breakfast griddle.  

One year early in my tenure, during a year when Louie was drinking, I first heard his stories,  They continued late into the night as one inebriated person after another staggered off to turn in.  He was in charge of the blender at the tiki bar and he induced me to drink perhaps ten delicious frozen drinks of some kind.   He drank at least that many himself, as one by one every other drinker mumbled good night, shuffled off, fell over.

I was the second to last man standing that night, kind of, I tottered off to sleep after slurring a goodnight to Louie. To my amazement, I saw (while up briefly to pee) that Louie was the first guy up in the morning, putting the coffee on before anybody else was up, cheerfully at work out at the makeshift workstation near the tiki bar, breaking eggs, making pancake batter, firing up the grill to get breakfast started for everybody.

Over the years there were tragedies.  Louie’s younger brother, Frankie (they were two of four brothers), another beloved guy, a former NYC detective, had a terrible string of them a few years ago.   Frankie’s playful wife was diagnosed, too late, with the cancer that killed her a very short time later, right before the picnic one year. A few months later Louie came down with a sore throat he couldn’t shake.  The sore throat turned out to be esophageal cancer.   Louie’s funeral was on a brutally frigid day a month or two later.   Frankie underwent a heart procedure that had a very remote, less than one percent, chance of paralysis.   Frankie hit that jackpot too. Somehow, his faith sustains him.  He seems in most ways to be pretty close to how he always was, except that he’s in a wheelchair and attended by two caretakers at all times.

I’m thinking about this family today because we came back from that third weekend in August picnic last night.   When Uncle Tony’s widow died about fifteen years ago the picnic was in jeopardy.   It was unclear, as Sekhnet edited her beautiful movie chronicling the history of the picnic, if there’d be another one.  That was a big motivation to make the documentary.  In the end the property was purchased by a grand-nephew who rebuilt the place into a modern family compound.  

I first saw this guy as a young man in Sekhnet’s masterpiece. The young Anthony looks into her camera and says “it was just a weekend but it seemed to us like the whole summer, we couldn’t wait to go and we used to cry when we had to leave.”  In the end he and his wife bought the place and they continue to host the family tradition the third weekend every August.

He runs the picnic much the way it was done  by Uncle Tony when he was a kid.  No elaborate planning of the menu is done, people bring whatever they bring, and it is always plenty, and delicious.   The traditional games are played as the assembled adults cheer and heckle: a line of kids trying to whistle with a mouth full of crackers, blow the largest bubble gum bubble, eat a round slice of watermelon by thrusting the face into the middle of it, three-legged sack races, tug of war with a gigantic rope.  Prizes go to everybody after each game.  

Gone is the candy tree of Sekhnet’s youth, a tree with candy on every branch where the kids found their prizes under the leaves and picked them right off the tree. Gone are the buzz cuts for the boys that Uncle Tony used to administer, but the traditions of the picnic are clearly prized and ongoing, as is the love and closeness of everyone there.   The children of Uncle Tony’s grandnieces and grandnephews are now becoming teenagers, young adults.    I knew all these kids as babies, then as toddlers.  If we live long enough, we’ll see their babies and toddlers, hard as that is to believe.  Sekhnet and I are among the older generation now.

Somebody took out a packet of photos yesterday after dinner.   They were passed around and cackled over.  Here is so and so (sitting across from me) at thirteen, forty years ago.  “Oh, my God, look at… is that so and so?!!”  Amid much hooting Sekhnet was examining a photo with a human shaped cut-out in the middle.  “I like the invisible man,” I said, pointing to blue table cloth showing through the open space the shape of a person literally cut out of the picture.   The cut out person was not identified or commented on and I didn’t follow up.    

Over the years a few people have disappeared from the gatherings.  Not only because of death, but other things too.  This happens in families.   We don’t talk about that, beyond a mention and a shrug, sometimes a short summary of the sad tale.   Why talk about it?   Family, and being with those you love, is the most important thing.  Am I wrong?

 

[1]  Although familicides are relatively rare, they are the most common form of mass killing.    source    

 

Don’t Worry About a Thing, he’s got the whole world in his hands

Our nation is in the hands of a world class financial genius.   He knows just how close to the brink to go before snatching victory from his adversary’s hand.   He’s crazy as a fox — and he’s never failed, never.   He was also the hero of one of America’s most popular and longest running reality TV shows ever.  He is a tremendous hero to some 60,000,000 or so great Americans.   

Pay no attentions to naysayers who try to frighten you about his supposed “impulsiveness” or “recklessness”.  His enemies will keep pointing to his several business bankruptcies, BUSINESS bankruptcies, not one of them a personal bankruptcy — personally he’s filthy rich.  Winners always play with house money.  Don’t forget this guy used to run some very successful casinos.

Still, there are those who won’t be happy until they see him fail, see America fail.  They write crazy, critical things, like this John Cassidy fellow in the New Yorker typed out in May of 2019:

The financial reprieve that Trump’s businesses received turned out to be temporary.  In 1991, his Taj Mahal casino, in Atlantic City, filed for bankruptcy protection, and, not very long after, so did his other two casinos—the Trump Plaza and the Trump Castle. In 1992, the Plaza Hotel filed for bankruptcy, and Trump agreed to turn over many of his remaining assets, including Trump Shuttle, to his creditors. With the help of the banks and his father, who repeatedly gave him money, Trump managed to escape the humiliation of personal bankruptcy, but his days as a swashbuckling entrepreneur were done. For a decade, or more, he largely confined himself to licensing deals, entertainment ventures, and minority investments that cashed in on his personal brand, which somehow survived his dramatic fall.

In May, 2019, this is all distant history, of course. But don’t let anyone tell you—not Trump, nor Newt Gingrich, nor any of the President’s other apologists—that the businesses Trump operated were successful, or that the huge losses they sustained were simply tax dodges. They weren’t.    

source

The lying mass media will show misleading graphics like this one, purposefully designed to make him look bad:

Screen shot 2019-08-16 at 3.56.29 AM.png

Real Americans LOVE this guy, and the way he’s making America great again, so do the rest of us a big fat favor, MSNBC and the failing so-called New Yorker (whatever that is) and just shut the hell up, OK?

Imbecile-in-chief intent on laughing last

Of all the damage this destructive narcissist has done so far, the thing that probably irks me the most (from a competitive list) is his despicable championing of a down-the-line partisan hack with multiple skeletons in his closet for a lifetime position on the Supreme Court [1].   The Federalist Society poster boy (a life member who was in its inaugural class at Yale Law School in the 1980s) will rule on important legal issues, unappealably, for possibly decades.  Every one of his votes can be predicted based on the issues involved, the position radical, corporatist conservatives favor, and his thoroughly consistent past rulings.   There were twenty-four other names on the list the Federalist Society gave Trump, yet the president chose to force the most despicable controversial and openly divisive of them on America.   For a generation.

Looking at choir boy Kavanaugh’s perpetually smiling face, looming out of his black judicial robes, makes me sick.   It’s tempting to use words like “scumbag” and “piece of shit”, but you get the point.   If an ugly, syphlitic penis had a face, it would be that self-satisfied, smirking mug.

I just read an excellent article by a writer named Megan Garber about the power of uproarious mockery and how Trump used it against Christine Blasey Ford, whose testimony was so vulnerably candid and powerful that even FOX news was in despair, during the break in the hearings, wringing its collective hands that Kavanaugh’s chance for appointment to the Supreme Court was over.  That was before Kavanaugh “manned up” in the afternoon session to forcefully strike back against his vicious enemies, crying, snorting and accusing, aided by a shrill, indignant Lindsay Graham and an insurmountable one vote Republican party-line majority in the Judiciary Committee.

A few days later, while the FBI was doing a very limited, five day complete investigation into Blasey Ford’s accusations, Trump, in Mississippi, had a rally of supporters cracking up at her expense.    From Megan Garber’s account:

I had one beer,” the president, imitating Ford, said, thrusting his index finger upward to emphasize the number. He kept the digit upraised. “I had one beer!

The president then added another character to his routine: an anonymous interrogator of Ford. “Well, do you think it was—” he began to ask.

Nope!” he said, gleefully interrupting himself and his fictional questioner. “It was one beer.” The joke built speed. “How did you get home? I don’t remember.How did you get there? I don’t remember. Where is the place? I don’t remember.How many years ago was it? I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know.

At this, the crowd at the rally guffawed. They cheered. They broke out into applause. The president, thus galvanized, thus supported, thus loved, continued his one-man interrogation: “What neighborhood was it in? I don’t know. Where’s the house? I don’t know. Upstairs, downstairs, where was it? I don’t know. But I had one beer. That’s the only thing I remember.

Of course, she remembered an awful lot of specifics, including, vividly, Kavanaugh’s drunken, dickish face looming over her as he held her down and groped her and his drunk friend Mark Judge nearby.  She remembered enough for the FBI to have easily found the exact home in which the attack took place that summer afternoon in 1982 — within a walk of the Country Club where she swam–  in  a locked room on the second floor, across from the bathroom at the top of the stairs.   Had the FBI been permitted to fully investigate, or even interview more than a small, select handful of “witnesses”, let alone talk to Kavanaugh or Blasey Ford, the specifics could easily have been confirmed.   Instead “Boof” Kavanaugh was.

Megan Garber includes this from what should have been Blasey Ford’s “end of story” testimony: 

“What is the strongest memory you have, the strongest memory of the incident, something you cannot forget?” Patrick Leahy, the Democratic senator from Vermont, asked Ford last Thursday, during her testimony to the Senate Judiciary Committee. The professor of psychology, serving as her own expert witness in the attack that she alleged Kavanaugh and his friend Mark Judge perpetrated, replied: “Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”

“You’ve never forgotten them laughing at you,” Leahy said.

“They were laughing with each other,” Ford replied.

“And you were the object of the laughter?”

“I was underneath one of them, while the two laughed.”

“Indelible in the hippocampus is the laughter. The uproarious laughter between the two, and their having fun at my expense.”

Contrast this level of certainty and detail to what was contained in the written answers Trump gave to the Special Counsel during the investigation of his possible criminal conspiracy with Russia during his historic 2016 presidential campaign and his ongoing (and continuing) pattern of obstruction of justice, a pattern that escalated dramatically and immediately once the Special Counsel was appointed. 

Remember that these written answers were submitted because the president’s lawyers had ruled out an interview with Mueller, a guaranteed “perjury trap”  since the president has proved himself, over and over, to be simply incapable of not lying.    Trump’s lawyers’ written answers claimed he had no memory of anything, no detail too large or too small for him to have no recollection of.   

Mueller called these answers “inadequate, incomplete, imprecise and insufficient”.  A good description, certainly of the stand-up guy president’s final answer, to a detailed question about the soon to be sentenced former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

TRUMP:

[no answer provided] 

Why this has hilarious FUCK YOU not been more widely publicized, I have no idea.   

The evasive and “inadequate” written answers and Mueller’s detailed queries have been on-line for a while.  You can read them here.  Scroll down to the last one for the punchline, or just check out the question and its “insufficient” answer below.  [2]   

Hilarious, no?

 

[1]  multiple accounts of years of his black out “beer” drinking, two independent, credible and detailed accounts of gross sexual impropriety (the one at Yale never investigated at all, in spite of numerous witnesses to it coming forward during the confirmation hearings), his denial of details of his close association with his disgraced former mentor Alex Kozinsky (and Kozinsky’s sexually explicit listserve), a long pattern of extreme partisanship including aggressive prosecution of then president Bill Clinton and undisclosed, classified services rendered to Dubya Bush, including during the controversial Florida recount episode.   

There was enough controversy that the voice of American Jesuits said Kavanaugh must withdraw his name from consideration.  Instead the blameless jurist made a tearful, snorting partisan speech accusing the Clintons of launching a well-funded dark money campaign of revenge against him — an unhinged speech that should have disqualified him.   To wit:

A calculated and orchestrated political hit, fueled with apparent pent-up anger about President Trump and the 2016 election, fear that has been unfairly stoked about my judicial record, revenge on behalf of the Clintons and millions of dollars in money from outside left-wing opposition groups. 

[2]

SPECIAL COUNSEL’S OFFICE:

b. Following the Obama Administration’s imposition of sanctions on Russia in December 2016 (“Russia sanctions”), did you discuss with Lieutenant General (LTG) Michael Flynn, K.T. McFarland, Steve Bannon, Reince Priebus, Jared Kushner, Erik Prince, or anyone else associated with the transition what should be communicated to the Russian government regarding the sanctions? If yes, describe who you spoke with about this issue, when, and the substance of the discussion(s).

c. On December 29 and December 31, 2016, LTG Flynn had conversations with Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak about the Russia sanctions and Russia’s response to the Russia sanctions.

i. Did you direct or suggest that LTG Flynn have discussions with anyone from the Russian government about the Russia sanctions?

ii. Were you told in advance of LTG Flynn’s December 29, 2016 conversation that he was going to be speaking with Ambassador Kislyak? If yes, describe who told you this information, when, and what you were told. If no, when and from whom did you learn of LTG Flynn’s December 29, 2016 conversation with Ambassador Kislyak?

iii. When did you learn of LTG Flynn and Ambassador Kislyak’s call on December 31, 2016? Who told you and what were you told?

iv. When did you learn that sanctions were discussed in the December 29 and December 31, 2016 calls between LTG Flynn and Ambassador Kislyak? Who told you and what were you told?

d. At any time between December 31, 2016, and January 20, 2017, did anyone tell you or suggest to you that Russia’s decision not to impose reciprocal sanctions was attributable in any way to LTG Flynn’s communications with Ambassador Kislyak? If yes, identify who provided you with this information, when, and the substance of what you were told.

e. On January 12, 2017, the Washington Post published a column that stated that LTG Flynn phoned Ambassador Kislyak several times on December 29, 2016. After learning of the column, did you direct or suggest to anyone that LTG Flynn should deny that he discussed sanctions with Ambassador Kislyak? If yes, who did you make this suggestion or direction to, when, what did you say, and why did you take this step?

i. After learning of the column, did you have any conversations with LTG Flynn about his conversations with Ambassador Kislyak in December 2016? If yes, describe when those discussions occurred and the content of the discussions.

f. Were you told about a meeting between Jared Kushner and Sergei Gorkov that took place in December 2016?

i. If yes, describe who you spoke with, when, the substance of the discussion(s), and what you understood was the purpose of the meeting.

g. Were you told about a meeting or meetings between Erik Prince and Kirill Dmitriev or any other representative from the Russian government that took place in January 2017?

i. If yes, describe who you spoke with, when, the substance of the discussion(s), and what you understood was the purpose of the meeting(s).

h. Prior to January 20, 2017, did you talk to Steve Bannon, Jared Kushner, or any other individual associated with the transition regarding establishing an unofficial line of communication with Russia? If yes, describe who you spoke with, when, the substance of the discussion(s), and what you understood was the purpose of such an unofficial line of communication.

TRUMP:

(No answer provided.)

Suicide by gun doesn’t count! UNFAIR!

Our democracy is pay to play, now more than ever.   The Federalist Society caucus on the Supreme Court, in its infamous (unanimous) 5-4 Citizens United v. FEC decision, in 2010, ruled that money is speech and limiting its power in politics offends the First Amendment’s freedom of speech.   If you have more money, you get more speech, unlimited money equals unlimited speech, fair is fair.   Even if you’re a legal fiction, a certain perpetual type of business organization, you get additional, unlimited speech as a “person”.   Corporations are people.   You want proof?   They have freedom of speech, the intoxicating freedom, since 2010, to spend unlimited sums to advance their political aspirations.  That’s freedom, baby.

Sometimes such freedom is not reasonable or explainable.   Let me explain.

I’ve long noticed that gun suicides, an alarming number of American dead every week (about 458 at the 2018 rate), are not counted for purposes of gun fatality statistics in the United States.  I know, I know…  The National Rifle Association (reputedly Trump’s largest single donor during the 2016 election cycle) insists that including the bloated number of gun suicides would totally skew the gun fatality numbers and make gun ownership look way more dangerous than it actually is.  They don’t even have a rationale for not including gun suicides in the tally, but, the beauty part, they don’t need one.  The mass media always seems to go along with the NRA on this.

I noticed last week that PBS (our public broadcasting service), in a recent NewsHour piece about gun violence, didn’t mention the shocking number of suicides by gun — which they excluded while simply noting that gun suicide “makes up the largest proportion of gun deaths in America.”    PBS reported, in another recent piece I found, that last year 23,800 Americans killed themselves with guns.    We also hear that American suicide numbers are going up constantly and that suicide by gun is by far the most successful of the way of doing it, comprising more than half of the deaths (although only 6% of all attempts).  [1]

An hour after sending off a piece on this hideous truth to the Times, which I titled Et tu, PBS? I was watching a clip of Ari Melber from MSNBC that made me add (to myself) Et tu, MSNBC?  Melber spoke of encouraging signs of bipartisan progress on combatting the gathering climate catastrophe and our American plague of deadly gun violence.   He showed this graphic of gun deaths so far in 2019:

Screen Shot 2019-08-14 at 8.39.24 PM.png  

I did a quick mental calculation of 7.5 months of 23,8000 annual suicides by gun and realized the Gun Violence Archive (whatever that is) [2] had not counted (here I reached for my calculator) at least 14,875 victims of fatal gun violence (seven and a half months at last years rate).  Neither had MSNBC. 

So here we have another cooked “statistic” that is served up to us as a sobering “fact”.  Ari Melber and his team could easily have done the quick search and the calculation I did — in our instant information age it would have taken them a moment to get the actual number of gun fatalities in America. 

The number they would have arrived at for 2019 gun deaths so far is 23,967 (using last year’s gun suicide number).  Admittedly, 9,092 dead sounds better than 23,967 dead — by a long shot (or even a point blank shot to the skull), but still…

What the fuck, what the fucking fuck?

We live in emotionally unstable times, the predominant public emotions being fear, anger and hatred.   These emotions are stirred constantly by personally tailored notifications on the little computers we all carry with us in our pockets.   Our president, the billionaire offspring of the son of a lawless man deported from his native Germany (tax evasion and draft dodging) and a dirt-poor Scottish domestic servant, speaks on behalf of the desperate Americans who are setting new records for blowing their own brains out and killing themselves by drug overdoses in areas that no longer have paying jobs.  The president says, most recently, that only immigrants who are not dirt poor, or criminals (as he’s pointed out, many Mexicans are rapists.  they’re rapists) are welcome here.   Fuck refugees, people fleeing horrors of every kind, fuck all those subhuman fucks.  No room.  Get the fuck out.  USA!   USA!!!!

This troubling, divisive, false creature has a puncher’s chance of winning re-election, particularly in a system where a 78,000 margin in “swing states” is good enough to win, no matter how many millions of “popular votes” that candidate loses by.  Add to it that his party is successfully resisting all efforts to safeguard the integrity of our elections and ensure fair and accurately counted voting.   This in the face of proof that the 2016 electronic voting systems  were sweepingly and systematically hacked into, in all fifty states.  We’ll never know if vote totals were manipulated since there are no longer any paper records to consult.   The status quo seems to have favored Trump, look at his historic election mandate, so his party sees no problem with it.

Donald Trump may seem like a vain, thin-skinned strutting idiot who has no business running a candy store, let alone the world’s most powerful nation, but at least 60,000,000 Americans love him unconditionally.  His support has never varied much from around 40%, no matter what he does.   A writer named Adam Serwer put it perfectly, at the top of his piece The Cruelty is the Point:   [3]

President Trump and his supporters find community by rejoicing in the suffering of those they hate and fear. 

Meanwhile, due to the policy of a powerful lobbying group, the voting public can’t even get basic information like how many of our desperate fellow citizens are using a few of their 393,000,000 constitutionally protected guns to blow their own heads off every day (about 65).   The NRA says “nothing to see here” and “UNFAIR!”.   And so it is.

Opinions are like assholes, true, but it would be nice if they were washed once in a while.   Lots of clean water would help, and some soap.  Sunlight, we are told, is the best disinfectant. 

 

 

[1]  I wrote a long, detailed piece on this the last few days, larded with quotations and citing every number I included,  that I was urged to send to the New York Times.   The Grey Debutante has two business days left to tell me if they’ll run some version of the overwrought piece.  They want an exclusive, so I had to take down the original and rewritten pieces from this blahg, just in case they did a google search.   If I don’t hear back by end of business Friday, I’ll be free repost it here.  And I shall.

2]  The nonprofit Gun Violence Archive has this cryptic statement on its daily ledger of gun deaths:  22,000 Annual Suicides not included on Daily Summary Ledger.  

{3]  The article ends with this beautiful, horrific paragraph:

Trump’s only true skill is the con; his only fundamental belief is that the United States is the birthright of straight, white, Christian men, and his only real, authentic pleasure is in cruelty. It is that cruelty, and the delight it brings them, that binds his most ardent supporters to him, in shared scorn for those they hate and fear: immigrants, black voters, feminists, and treasonous white men who empathize with any of those who would steal their birthright. The president’s ability to execute that cruelty through word and deed makes them euphoric. It makes them feel good, it makes them feel proud, it makes them feel happy, it makes them feel united. And as long as he makes them feel that way, they will let him get away with anything, no matter what it costs them.

source

 

[

 

Don’t forget about Mr. Trump’s mother

Our classy president is on an aggressive jihad against poor, working immigrants from shit-hole countries.   This merciless war on people seeking a better life in America is another example of his violent repudiation of the realities of the past, in this case his own family’s history.   Trump’s mother’s noble ancestry, as told by Wikipedia:

Mary Anne MacLeod (Trump) was born in a pebbledash croft house owned by her father since 1895 in Tong on the Isle of Lewis.[2]  Local historians and genealogists have described properties in this community at the time as “indescribably filthy” and characterized by “human wretchedness”.[5][6] The outbreak of World War I weakened its economy and male population.[2]

Raised in a Scottish Gaelic-speaking household, Mary was the youngest of ten children born to Malcolm (1866–1954) and Mary MacLeod (née Smith; 1867–1963).[7] Her father was a crofterfisherman and compulsory officer at Mary’s school.[2][3][8][9]English was her second language, which she learned at the school she attended until secondary school.[2]

 

As one account has put it, she “started life in America as a dirt-poor servant escaping the even worse poverty of her native land.”[8] Having obtained a U.S. Re-entry Permit—only granted to immigrants intending to stay and gain citizenship[8][9]—she returned to Scotland on the SS Cameronia on September 12, 1934.[13] She was recorded as living in New York by April 1935 in the 1940 U.S. Census.[13]

Though the 1940 census form filed by Mary Anne and her husband Fred Trump stated that she was a naturalized citizen, she did not actually become one until March 10, 1942.[3][8][9]

FredTrump1950-02.png

 

Check out the mustache on Frederick Christ Trump, in 1950, for fuck’s sake, five years after Mr. Hitler’s defeat in World War Two.   Talk about yer Nazi bastards…

As for Mary MacLeod Trump’s effect on her son, the future president:

As a parent she was more reserved than her husband.[2] Friends of the children noted fewer interactions with her than with him.[2] In appearance she was slight of build but was noted for an elaborate hairstyle, labeled in one account a “dynamic orange swirl”.[3] This bore a commonality with her son Donald, who once wrote, “Looking back, I realize now that I got some of my sense of showmanship from my mother.”[3]

 

An Inconvenient Truth

Google:

Oscar-winning documentary about the environment featuring the unlikeliest of movie stars. Former presidential candidate Al Gore holds this film together as, in front of an audience and with few aids beyond photo slides, he explains how humans have messed up the planet. Gore issues an urgent warning on what must be done, and done quickly, to save the earth.      

source

I really should make a new category, like homo imbecilis or something, for posts like this, which are essentially about the heedless stupidity of “The Wise Ape”.  This award winning film was screened everywhere thirteen years ago, clearly presenting a dire picture of our ravaged earth and setting out things that needed to be done, “and done quickly”.    That was in 2006, thirty six years after the first Earth Day rally, thirteen years ago.

It’s 2019.  Our latest effort to save our planet here in America was electing a man who claims the freedom-hating Chinese invented the hoax of Climate Change to screw American business, a man who appoints former fossil fuel executives to oversee the climate and diplomacy, a man who removes government scientific findings from the EPA (Nixon’s Environmental Protection Agency) website, a man who mocks anyone who disagrees that he’s the smartest and handsomest (and sexiest) man ever to hold the office of president.  

A man who must have heaved a big sigh of relief yesterday when his former buddy Jeffrey Epstein woke up dead in his cell [1].   Bagpiper Bill Barr issued a statement, apparently they are going to mount a full investigation into Epstein’s convenient death, an investigation even more thorough than the exhaustive five day FBI probe that completely and totally exonerated Justice Kavanaugh of the sick, dangerous Clinton-orchestrated accusation of youthful, drunken groping.   Their boss — a man for the ages.

Homo imbecilis, amigos… 

 

[1]  A death as convenient as the perfectly timed death of Ken Lay, the Dubya Bush compadre who was going to prison for fraud connected to Exxon.  The only executive in many years poised to be actually imprisoned (actually, his codefendant Jeffrey Skilling, wound up serving 12 years).  Makes you think.

Kenneth Lee Lay (April 15, 1942 – July 5, 2006) was the founder, CEO and Chairman of Enron and was heavily involved in the Enron scandal, a major accounting scandal that unraveled in 2000 in the largest bankruptcy ever to that date. Lay was indicted by a grand jury[4] and was found guilty of 10 counts of securities fraud in the trial of Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling.[5]Lay died in July 2006 while vacationing in his house near Aspen, Colorado, three months before his scheduled sentencing.[6] A preliminary autopsy reported Lay died of a myocardial infarction (heart attack) caused by coronary artery disease; his death resulted in a vacated judgment.[7][8][9]

Lay left behind “a legacy of shame” characterized by “mismanagement and dishonesty”.[10] In 2009, Portfolio.com  ranked Lay as the third-worst American CEO of all time.[11] His actions were the catalyst for subsequent and fundamental corporate reform in regard to “standards of leadership, governance, and accountability”.[10]

Thank you, Jesus, for that fundamental corporate reform.  Ken didn’t die in vain…

Lay was one of America’s highest-paid CEOs; between 1998 and 2001, he collected more than $220 million in cash and stock in Enron and sold 1.7 million shares.[12][13][14][15] However, during his trial in 2006, Lay claimed that Enron stock made up about 90% of his wealth, and that his net worth at that time was negative $250,000.[16]

blah blah blah

As President, Lay flew Bush and his wife to Washington on an Enron corporate plane.[27] In December 2000, Lay was mentioned as a possible candidate for United States Secretary of the Treasury under George W. Bush.[28]

From 1989 to 2002, Lay’s political contributions totaled $5.8 million, with 73% going to Republicans, and 27% going to Democrats.[2] From 1999 to 2001, he gave $365,410 to the Republican Party.[1]