I have been to hell, otherwise known as Southern California, and back (and no, it’s not that bad, but how could I pass up that joke?)

Updates

  1. Originally published, October 27, 8:41 pm.
  2. October 28, 11:19 am:
    • Something I let pass below was the xenophobic and extreme right-wing violence—yet more violence—that has occurred recently. There have been three such incidents—bombs sent to some of Donald Trump’s prominent opponents, a shooting of two people (Blacks) at a Kroger store, and an attack on a synagogue that killed 11 people.[1] I generally let stories like this pass. The U.S. is an extraordinarily violent and vicious society, due to alienation, due to a style of entertainment that promotes violence and Hierarchically Invidious Monistic thinking, due to the identification of a significant part of the population with guns, due to empire and its legacy. I see such stories and I don’t really see them as news. You may deny that “this is who we are,” but the plain and simple fact is that it is. I don’t like it but I am powerless to change it. So I have to accept it. (Yet more violence)
  3. October 28, 2:15 pm:
  4. October 29, 7:47 am:
    • Finger-pointing blah over the recent violence[2] even though this does absolutely nothing about root causes.
  5. October 29, 12:18 pm:
    • Is it any wonder chronological children can't wait for fucking Christmas when retailer children put up Christmas decorations before Halloween?
      Is it any wonder chronological children can’t wait for fucking Christmas when retailer children put up Christmas decorations before Halloween?
  6. October 29, 2018, 7:26 pm:
    • Paul Waldman has another scathing review of Donald Trump’s and his followers’ ‘victimhood.’[3] (Yet more violence)
    • There’s been more fun on Wall Street.[4]
  7. October 30, 7:18 am:
    • Words fail me. I cannot even utter what Mike Pence did.[5] (Yet more violence)
    • Moved Jennifer Rubin’s column on Donald Trump’s and his supporters’ ‘victimhood’[6] from Donald Trump to Yet more violence. Also, this post had misclassified Paul Waldman’s column[7] under Donald Trump when it had actually been archived under Yet more violence.
    • I don’t know who is telling Donald Trump he can end birthright citizenship with an executive order[8] but I’m sure wondering how they manage to mangle the 14th amendment to reach that conclusion. The amendment begins, “All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside.”[9] The only weasel words I see there are about being “subject to the jurisdiction thereof” but if they’re here, they’re subject to that jurisdiction. Unless, that is, Trump wants to not enforce the law against unauthorized migrants. (Unauthorized migration)
  8. October 30, 2018, 11:10 am:
  9. October 30, 2:19 pm:
    • Aaron Blake thinks Donald Trump’s claimed intention to abolish birthright citizenship by executive order is a “cynical ploy that, even if it’s attempted, will likely fail. And it probably won’t even be attempted.” His logic boils down to that this is the kind of thing that idiot authoritarian populists, whom Trump wants to motivate to vote, slobber over.[12] My guess is that Blake is right. (Unauthorized migration)
    • Donald Trump is a black hole. There is no limit to the depths of his depravity. The latest? “When we learned last week of allegations that women were offered money to make false claims [of sexual assault] about the Special Counsel, we immediately referred the matter to the FBI for investigation.”[13] (James Comey)
  10. October 30, 3:40 pm:
    • I neglected to mention in the last update that I am still not caught up.
  11. October 30, 10:52 pm:
    • Now, I’m caught up.

It’s been a week. Just as my server was having a crisis, I had to leave to go to Southern California. Now that I’m back, I’ve almost got things back to a tolerable condition.

In the meantime, I have three new blog entries:

  1. On understanding the ‘other’
  2. Musings of a San Francisco kid
  3. This is not just extremist right-wing violence. It is our violence. And we must own it.

And my patience with my credit union is running very, very short.

I had a transaction declined for absolutely no good reason. It wasn’t that I had insufficient funds and, it turns out, it wasn’t that they had suspected my Southern California activity was fraudulent.

Though my patience with so-called “fraud protection” ran out a while ago. I do yell at customer service representatives on the phone these days and I have been no less scathing in my communication with the credit union (they close down their customer service phone lines at night and on weekends so I couldn’t actually yell at them). I have been hit with these holds numerous times, presumably because my life does not—nor would I ever in a million years want it to—fall into nice neat predictable patterns except over a relatively, but apparently long enough to fool their artificial idiocy, short periods of time.

I need to be clear here: Declines for scratching-their-scrotum reasons are absolutely unacceptable. They are intolerably rude. They are inexcusable. And don’t try to tell me they’re protecting me against fraud when all I see, and see way too often, are false positives, which means I have no evidence whatsoever of true positives, but considerable reason to doubt they can tell a false positive from a true positive. All they’re really doing is keeping me from money I have a right to access, just as I need to access it. What this really amounts to is another way of picking on the poor, who are less likely to have access to alternative payment methods.

Right now it looks like they just have an incredibly incompetent Information Technology department. Among other things, they hate Android. Their Android app simply sucks in so many ways that I’ve uninstalled it and refuse to use it. They failed to enable near field communication (NFC) payments on Google Pay for Android devices for years after it worked on Apple Pay and didn’t get on the ball for at least several months after claiming it worked (it does now work on my Wear OS smartwatch).

And again, these assholes are making huge salaries while I remain poor. I should dump them for their arrogance alone. As it is, I’m getting closer to making that decision simply because with their IT problems they simply aren’t a reliable place to keep what little money I have.


#MeToo

Kat Rosenfield, “Sarah Silverman Tweaks #MeToo,” Tablet, October 26, 2018, https://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-arts-and-culture/273331/sarah-silverman-tweaks-metoo


Brett Kavanaugh

Seung Min Kim and Elise Viebeck, “Grassley refers Avenatti and Swetnick to Justice for a criminal probe,” Washington Post, October 25, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/grassley-refers-avenatti-and-swetnick-to-justice-for-a-criminal-probe/2018/10/25/75ef7a02-d879-11e8-9559-712cbf726d1c_story.html


Wall Street

Thomas Heath, “Dow plunges more than 600 points in another day of losses, officially wiping out its 2018 gains,” Washington Post, October 24, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/us-stocks-whipsawed-in-fresh-wave-of-volatility/2018/10/24/b9b75066-d7a2-11e8-a10f-b51546b10756_story.html

Amrith Ramkumar, “Markets Moving in Lockstep Are Latest Warning Sign,” October 24, 2018, https://www.wsj.com/articles/markets-moving-in-lockstep-are-latest-warning-sign-1540382401

Thomas Heath, “U.S. stocks skid deeper on tech sell-off,” Washington Post, October 26, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/us-stocks-skid-again-on-tech-sell-off/2018/10/26/cf9607f4-d920-11e8-aeb7-ddcad4a0a54e_story.html

Amrith Ramkumar, “U.S. Stocks Slump on Tech Worries,” Wall Street Journal, October 26, 2018, https://www.wsj.com/articles/global-stocks-resume-declines-1540541081

Thomas Heath, “Embattled tech stocks drag down rest of market in late-day plunge,” Washington Post, October 29, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/embattled-tech-stocks-drag-rest-of-market-down-too/2018/10/29/6dc8a230-dbae-11e8-b3f0-62607289efee_story.html


Unauthorized migration

Kevin Sieff and Joshua Partlow, “Why Mexico isn’t stopping the migrant caravan,” Washington Post, October 22, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/why-mexico-isnt-stopping-the-migrant-caravan/2018/10/22/0a10c886-d608-11e8-8384-bcc5492fef49_story.html

Kevin Sieff and Joshua Partlow, “How the migrant caravan became so big and why it’s continuing to grow,” Washington Post, October 23, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/how-the-migrant-caravan-became-so-big-and-why-its-continuing-to-grow/2018/10/23/88abf1a6-d631-11e8-8384-bcc5492fef49_story.html

Aaron Blake, “Trump’s transparent, frivolous ploy on birthright citizenship,” Washington Post, October 30, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2018/10/30/trumps-transparent-frivolous-ploy-birthright-citizenship/

John Bowden, “Trump says he will sign executive order banning birthright citizenship,” Hill, October 30, 2018, https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/413770-trump-says-he-will-sign-executive-order-banning-birthright


Student loans

Annie Nova, “These Americans fled the country to escape their giant student debt,” CNBC, October 27, 2018, https://www.cnbc.com/2018/10/26/he-moved-to-a-jungle-in-india-to-escape-his-student-debt–and-hes-not-alone-.html


Yet more violence

Jennifer Rubin, “President Trump, ever the victim,” Washington Post, October 26, 2018,https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/opinions/wp/2018/10/26/president-trump-ever-the-victim/

Ray Sanchez and Melissa Gray, “72 hours in America: Three hate-filled crimes. Three hate-filled suspects,” CNN, October 28, 2018, https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/28/us/72-hours-of-hate-in-america/index.html

Robert Costa and Felicia Sonmez, “Trump, GOP defiant amid allegations that incendiary rhetoric contributed to climate of violence,” Washington Post, October 28, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-gop-defiant-amid-allegations-that-incendiary-rhetoric-contributed-to-climate-of-violence/2018/10/28/eecd91f6-dae1-11e8-b732-3c72cbf131f2_story.html

Alana Newhouse, “American Yahrzeit,” Tablet, October 29, 2018, https://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/273679/american-yahrzeit

Paul Waldman, “How Trump and Republicans wield the politics of victimhood,” Washington Post, October 29, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2018/10/29/how-trump-and-republicans-wield-the-politics-of-victimhood

Moriah Balingit, Avi Selk, and Mark Berman, “Shooting victim’s family shuns President Trump in Pittsburgh as top officials decline to join him,” Washington Post, October 30, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2018/10/30/despite-calls-stay-away-trump-heads-pittsburgh-after-synagogue-massacre/

Isaac Stanley-Becker, “Honoring Pittsburgh synagogue victims, Pence appears with ‘rabbi’ who preaches, ‘Jesus is the Messiah,’” Washington Post, October 30, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2018/10/30/honoring-pittsburgh-synagogue-victims-mike-pence-appears-with-rabbi-who-preaches-jesus-is-messiah/


James Comey

Emily Birnbaum, “Special counsel asks FBI to investigate conspiracy against Mueller,” Hill, October 30, 2018, https://thehill.com/policy/national-security/413873-fbi-asked-to-investigate-claims-women-were-offered-money-to-allege


  1. [1]Ray Sanchez and Melissa Gray, “72 hours in America: Three hate-filled crimes. Three hate-filled suspects,” CNN, October 28, 2018, https://www.cnn.com/2018/10/28/us/72-hours-of-hate-in-america/index.html
  2. [2]Robert Costa and Felicia Sonmez, “Trump, GOP defiant amid allegations that incendiary rhetoric contributed to climate of violence,” Washington Post, October 28, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-gop-defiant-amid-allegations-that-incendiary-rhetoric-contributed-to-climate-of-violence/2018/10/28/eecd91f6-dae1-11e8-b732-3c72cbf131f2_story.html
  3. [3]Paul Waldman, “How Trump and Republicans wield the politics of victimhood,” Washington Post, October 29, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2018/10/29/how-trump-and-republicans-wield-the-politics-of-victimhood
  4. [4]Thomas Heath, “Embattled tech stocks drag down rest of market in late-day plunge,” Washington Post, October 29, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/embattled-tech-stocks-drag-rest-of-market-down-too/2018/10/29/6dc8a230-dbae-11e8-b3f0-62607289efee_story.html
  5. [5]Isaac Stanley-Becker, “Honoring Pittsburgh synagogue victims, Pence appears with ‘rabbi’ who preaches, ‘Jesus is the Messiah,’” Washington Post, October 30, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2018/10/30/honoring-pittsburgh-synagogue-victims-mike-pence-appears-with-rabbi-who-preaches-jesus-is-messiah/
  6. [6]Jennifer Rubin, “President Trump, ever the victim,” Washington Post, October 26, 2018,https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/opinions/wp/2018/10/26/president-trump-ever-the-victim/
  7. [7]Paul Waldman, “How Trump and Republicans wield the politics of victimhood,” Washington Post, October 29, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/plum-line/wp/2018/10/29/how-trump-and-republicans-wield-the-politics-of-victimhood
  8. [8]John Bowden, “Trump says he will sign executive order banning birthright citizenship,” Hill, October 30, 2018, https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/413770-trump-says-he-will-sign-executive-order-banning-birthright
  9. [9]U.S. Const., amend. XIV, § 1.
  10. [10]Alana Newhouse, “American Yahrzeit,” Tablet, October 29, 2018, https://www.tabletmag.com/jewish-news-and-politics/273679/american-yahrzeit
  11. [11]Moriah Balingit, Avi Selk, and Mark Berman, “Shooting victim’s family shuns President Trump in Pittsburgh as top officials decline to join him,” Washington Post, October 30, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2018/10/30/despite-calls-stay-away-trump-heads-pittsburgh-after-synagogue-massacre/
  12. [12]Aaron Blake, “Trump’s transparent, frivolous ploy on birthright citizenship,” Washington Post, October 30, 2018, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2018/10/30/trumps-transparent-frivolous-ploy-birthright-citizenship/
  13. [13]Peter Carr, quoted in Emily Birnbaum, “Special counsel asks FBI to investigate conspiracy against Mueller,” Hill, October 30, 2018, https://thehill.com/policy/national-security/413873-fbi-asked-to-investigate-claims-women-were-offered-money-to-allege

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