The Trees Are Stripped Bare
Good Ebola News
For a change of pace:
- Quarantine ending for the Dallas ebola patient's family.
- Infected Spanish healthcare worker is free of Ebola.
I'm sure this will cure all the viral hysteria.
I Must Now Keep Looking In
Dawn comes later and later now,and I, who only a month agocould sit with coffee every morningwatching the light walk down the hillto the edge of the pond and placea doe there, shyly drinking,then see the light step out uponthe water, sowing reflectionsto either side—a gardenof trees that grew as if by magic—now see no more than my face,mirrored by darkness, pale and odd,startled by time.
"White people in New Hampshire really need to do some self-reflection and regulate their animal impulses..."
At least they're rioting about something horrible that exists, like pumpkins and their destructive influence on Halloween, not mythical white privilege that killed a kid.
The World Turned Upside Down
Bryan provides an important reminder and a good question:
In this centennial of World War I it is important to remember that 17 million people died in that conflict, but 50 million people died in the Spanish influenza pandemic that followed.
The Federal government gave a grant to a small Alaskan fishing village to install a close circuit TV monitoring system to watch for terrorists, but cut funding for the National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control. From 2000 to 2010 a total of a little more than 3,000 Americans have died from terrorist attacks while 50,000 Americans die every year from the flu. How does that make sense?
Answer: it doesn't.
A Raid Upon Accessible Towns In Vermont
Counsel for the United States arguing for Canada to extradite perpetrators of The St Albans Raid, which happened 150 years ago:
[L]ong previous to the 19th day of October last, the day when the crime in question was committed, a plan was organised in our Province of Canada, by a party of men calling themselves Southern Refugees, who at the time were enjoying the hospitalities of our citizens and the protection of our laws, which plan had for its object the robbery of our neighbours in the peaceful town of St. Albans.
It is proved that in pursuance of this illegal and treacherous organisation, and two or three days preceding the said 19th day of October, these so called refugees, to the number of about 20, secretly left this Province, and stealthily introduced themselves into the town of St Albans.
It is proved that after their arrival there, and so soon as these evil disposed visitors had marked out the persons whom they intended should become the victims of their cowardly and felonious operations, they cast aside the disguise assumed for the occasion, and in the afternoon of the 19th day of October last, suddenly emerged from their hiding places, and appeared among the unsuspecting citizens of St. Albans armed with the deadliest kind of weapons; each man of the party threatening instant death to all or any of the panic stricken citizens who dared to oppose him in his work of plunder.
It was essentially a series of bank jobs:
While the banks were being robbed, other members of the raiding party compelled citizens who were on the streets or on the American House veranda, to line up in the park. Guards were stationed to prevent any person from leaving Main Street.
Collins H. Huntington, a well known citizen, came along the street, on his way to the Academy to get his children, who were attending school. He was accosted by a stranger, who ordered him to cross the street to the park. Mr. Huntington paid no attention to the order, supposing the man to be intoxicated or insane. This stranger, who was Lieutenant Young, the leader of the bank, then fire at Mr. Huntington, inflicting a flesh wound.
Capt. George P. Conger, who had recently returned from the war, was ordered to the park by Young, but he ran into the American House, out the back door to Lake Street, and gave the alarm. Citizens began to assemble and the raiders seizing horses at Fuller's livery stable, and from persons on the street, started north, attempting to burn the village by throwing Greek fire.
Captain Conger organized a pursuing party, and a running fire was kept up through the village streets. Elias J. Morrison, a contractor from Manchester, N. H., who was engaged in building the Welden House, was mortally wounded by one of the shots, a bullet entering his abdomen. He died three days later, as a result of the wound. It was a peculiar coincidence that the only person killed was a man said to have been in sympathy with the Confederate cause.
Captain Conger and a party of citizens followed the raiders, who took the Sheldon road. It is said that the plan outlined contemplated an attack on the Sheldon Bank, but finding it closed, and knowing that they were pursued, the raiders hastened on. They fired two bridges, but the blaze was extinguished by Captain Conger's party.
Their flight was so precipitate that some of the bank notes were dropped by the robbers. The raiders were pursued to the Canadian border and Captain Conger entered Frelighsburg, Que., where he ordered the arrest of every raider that could be found, but the robbers had scattered and none could be located at that time. Captain Newton, in command of a company, took a westerly route to cut off the retreat of the raiders, but without success.
It appears that the raiders at first had planned to set fire to the residence of Gov. John Gregory Smith, and during the confusion that followed to rob the banks, but this plan was abandoned, as it was feared that the banks would be locked in such an event, and it might be impossible to gain entrance. At the time of the raid Governor Smith was attending a legislative session at Montpelier, and all the men employed about his estate were out of town or working at some distance from the house. Soon after the raid began, a servant girl from a neighboring house rushed into the Smith house, exclaiming: "The Rebels are in town robbing the banks, burning the houses and killed the people. They are on their way up the hill intending to burn your house."
Such a message might well strike terror to the bravest heart. But Mrs. Smith did not lose her self control. She informed her servants of the peril that threatened them, drew the shades, closed the blinds, and bolted every door but the front entrance. Mrs. Smith's first impulse was to run up the flag, but she decided that such an act might be rash, under the circumstances. She then began a search for weapons, but could find only a large horse pistol for without ammunition, and with this in her had she took her stand in front of the house.
The raiders escaped across the border, where they were arrested but never sent back to the US so Canada could maintain its neutrality. And thus endeth the northernmost land action during the Civil War.
PS--Mostly a repost.
But Where's My Creature Power Suit?
Of course, we've been doing such things for a long time--Wright Bros figured out wing warping by observing nature, for example.
If only Obama had dealt with Ebola as decisively (and humorously) as Reagan handled AIDS.
Let The Trumpet Sound
Firewalls And Ebola
Saw somebody on FB say he didn't care how a travel ban would negatively impact countries where Ebola is at crisis levels. Must hate fire departments putting out blazes in his community's' homes, because it's not like that shit could spread, and fuck those people for not having fireproof houses, anyway.
Fear Is The Mind Killer
Echidne on our low handed enemy:
[T]he individuals who shared an apartment with Thomas Eric Duncan, the first Ebola patient in Dallas, have not yet developed Ebola, despite sharing living space with him after he became symptomatic*. The two more recent cases, Nina Pham and Amber Vinson, are nurses who cared for Duncan when he was in a later stage of the illness. It's also clear that they were not sufficiently trained or protected.
Thomas Eric Duncan himself caught Ebola from a patient who died on the same day.
An important component that Rand "Three Feet" Paul seems to (accidentally and/or deliberately) misread about what we already know about the virus. Not unlike how people freak out over vaccines that are unavoidably unsafe--common sense is a horrible guide in such cases.
Out of excess of caution, we label people who have come within 3 feet of a patient in certain spaces "low risk" because they might in some instances possibly come into contact with bodily fluids of a symptomatic patient in particular late stages of the disease when virus prodution is high. But the R0 is low for a reason.
If you don't stick yourself with a gom jabbar covered in an EVD-infected person's poop, you can probably just turn of the Fox News and sleep soundly. Unless you're afraid of an ELE caused by asteroids.
Dear Phillis, seek for heaven's joys...
By Phillis Wheatley:
[K]eep them ever Virtuous, brave, and free --But how, presumptuous shall we hope to findDivine acceptance with th' Almighty mind --While yet (O deed ungenerous!) they disgraceAnd hold in bondage Afric's blameless race;Let virtue reign -- And those accord our prayersBe victory our's, and generous freedom theirs.
It's unclear when she was freed, but some people peg today in 1775.
All But Hobbits Would Find This Post Exceedingly Dull
They liked to have books filled with things that they already knew, set out fair and square with no contradictions.
Two Plus Two Is Four, You Moron
A New Path
Auggie in Smoke:
They're all the same, but each one is different from every other one. You've got your bright mornings and your dark mornings. You've got your summer light and your autumn light. You've got your weekdays and your weekends. You've got your people in overcoats and galoshes, and you've got your people in shorts and T-shirts. Sometimes the same people, sometimes different ones. And sometimes the different ones become the same, and the same ones disappear. The earth revolves around the sun, and every day the light from the sun hits the earth at a different angle.
This concept inspired my old Intersection project. The spot has changed quite a bit since I stopped shooting there, but I haven't gotten around to revisiting it for a picture. Wonder if I could do a new version in the front yard?
I could call it Path.
Or maybe Gnome.
Eh, there's change over time, obviously, but not much chance of seeing different people, cars, construction, etc. But maybe you'll still see pictures from time to time...
George Will's Intellect Is Mythical
Coming up to the plate, here's George Will, designated mansplainer:
[T]he Democrats’ trope about the Republicans’ “war on women” clearly assumes that women are civic illiterates.
Access to contraception has been a constitutional right for 49 years (Griswold v. Connecticut, 1965). The judiciary has controlled abortion policy for 41 years (Roe v. Wade, 1973). Yet the Democratic Party thinks women can be panicked into voting about mythical menaces to these things.
I don't suppose Will has noticed Hobby Lobby, TRAP laws, GOP hostility to gender equality, etc. But anyway, Digby has some choice quotes to demonstrate her civic illiteracy.
PS--Remember when we won in Iraq? Yet Will thinks it's falling apart now. But to him if women "won" some victories a while back, they couldn't possibly be threatened with war now? A puzzle.
The big bouncy chair is going to a new home. Amazingly, it survived use by both our children.
Fox News On Mars: WE'RE ALL GONNA DIE FROM THE COMET!!!
This should be fun:
On Sunday, Oct. 19, 2014, at about 18:30 UTC (14:30 Eastern), Mars will experience a very close encounter with a comet.
The comet C/2013 A1 (Siding Spring) will pass just about 130,000 km (80,000 miles) from the surface of Mars. There is no danger of an impact, but the planet will pass through part of the comet's tail (which is composed of gas molecules and dust).
NASA and other space agencies have taken precautions to make sure the spacecraft at Mars won't be hurt, but they're also hoping to capitalize on this unprecedented opportunity to see a comet VERY up close and personal. I'm not sure just when we'll start seeing data from them, but I highly recommend keeping an eye on Emily Lakdawalla's blog page and her Twitter feed. She is really great about staying up to date and relaying accurate information as soon as she has it.
SL-9 was so interesting a couple decades ago. This won't have atmospheric explosions, but I'm sure we'll get some neat pictures and a little bit more knowledge all the same...
Todd Vs Todd
Chuck Todd gets reamed in a FB chat:
"Why didn't you ask me when I stopped beating my wife? Come on," Todd said.
Hey, that's my schtick!
The First Amendment Has Not Been Offended
RMJ clarifies the point of discovery to Charlie Pierce. Everybody should read it, even though everybody really ought to understand this already, especially the fact that Madison's Remonstrance is a warning against Establishment and Corruption, not a Get Out Of Civil Society Free Card.
If The Framers Wanted Us To Have A Judiciary, They Would've Included One In The Constiution
It's cute how Gov Brewer is so disappointed with marriage equality in Arizona that she quotes Justice Fauxriginalism, whose dissent in Windsor could have absolutely no applicability to any other civil rights progress. And their commitment to legislative primacy over judicial review is admirable.
Speaking Of Ebola Fails
Much like how cold associated with the Polar Vortex is evidence of Global Warming, it is also perhaps counterintuitive that travel bans will make it more difficult to fight Ebola. But we can ignore silly people who study this shit, especially those idiots in charge of providing for the common Defence.
Mars Needs Czars
- Violence Against Women
- Trans Rights
I'm also thinking Measles. Pertussis. Maybe a Vaccination Czar. Oh, and an Asteroid Czar!
PS--We need a Transliteration Tsar, too. I hate the bogus word 'czar'.
Greed Is Bad
Speaking Of Louie Gohmert
during that segment he complained about CDC director Dr. Thomas Frieden blaming the two nurses who cared for index patient Thomas Eric Duncan and were later diagnosed with Ebola, for contracting the virus.
“Instead of asking forgiveness and explaining they had not gotten protocols where they needed to be, they come out and say, well, this nurse got Ebola because she violated protocol,” he said. “I mean, it is a war on these poor women nurses and they are doing the best they can.”
Nurses have in fact publicly condemned the Dallas hospital where Duncan was treated for inadequately training the staff and failing to immediately diagnose the condition and isolate the patient. The staff members did not, however, accuse the hospital or the government of deliberately leaving them exposed.
Does he think protocols are some device that needs to be shipped? And that for-profit hospitals should rely on government handouts instead of being prepared for health crises?
Oh, Come On!
We Have Always Delegated Authority
[O]ur jurisprudence has been driven by a practical understanding that in our increasingly complex society, replete with ever changing and more technical problems, Congress simply cannot do its job absent an ability to delegate power under broad general directives.
- Justice Harry Blackmun, Mistretta v. United States (1989)
The Ebola thing has been an interesting demonstration of contradictions inherent in the current Tea Party view of governance. They're all about "government is best which governs least", yet demand accountability from said government for a couple sick people despite the fact that it was a for-profit entity that fucked things up.
With that as backdrop, I saw a discussion about whether we needed something like the CDC at all, let alone was it even constitutional. Yeah, it's been a while since I got into that kind of thing, so had to chime in.
I'll leave aside facially absurd things like claiming Rand Paul (who is totes a certified doctor) is in the best position to develop Ebola protocols. Let's just stick to the American concept of nondelegation doctrine.
My sparring partner contended that legislators should not delegate any authority to the Executive branch, whose only purpose is to do exactly what its co-equal branch requires. So, instead of creating the CDC and giving it power to develop regimes to prevent the spread of Ebola, Congress should just bring in experts to craft policy then pass a very specific law detailing how to handle the virus. Easy peasy!
Of course, that's absolutely fucking stupid.
Rep Louie Gohmert: Let's bring this meeting of the Joint Committee on Ebola Protocols to order.
Sen Tom Coburn: I don't know anything about this disease, but I've got a constituent who manufactures surgical tape, so that must be part of any safety process.
Gohmert: Excellent point. Now I'd like to call our first witness, Pastor Rick Wiles.
Wiles: Let 'em all die and God will sort 'em out.
Sen Ted Cruz: Sounds great. And if Obama asks for any money to fight Ebola, we'll shut down the government unless he also promises to shoot Mexicans on sight.
Not something that would work in most contexts for our large, diverse society with rapidly changing needs and challenges. And while delegating authority to executive agencies has been most prevalent in more moden times, it's been generally upheld by SCOTUS for almost a century and has been practiced since the beginning of our Republic.
Consider the earliest debates about my beloved Postal Service . There was a fair amount of concern in in the First and Second Congresses over giving the president too much power to determine how the mails would be delivered, yet the Post was created as a department under the Executive.
What's more, even when Congress specified postal routes (some 50 odd the first time around), it also granted the Postmaster General power to contract for other roads to be used so the service could be extended. He was also allowed to set various other regulations to manage how the department and delivery would function, and even given discretion as to payment arrangements.
So this stuff is as American as apple pie and tea parties. But what if these departments make bad regulations? The People can't hold them accountable! Yeah, 'cept for Congressional oversight (perhaps Congressman Issa could hold fewer hearings on the IRS and more on the USPS).
And naturally, there is a remedy if Congress thinks an agency is running wild with its rules. I think it's called "legislation" or something. That's right, the Legislature can pass stuff to fix what they don't like. Imagine that!
But by all means, let's get rid of the CDC. And impeach Obama while we're at it. That should stop Ebola from scaring any more white people.
PS--The thread in question kinda reminded me of tax evader arguments about the IRS.
‘God, am I not dead yet?’ said Ward, his ear
Meeting another dawn.
A blackbird, lost in leaves, began to throb
And on the pier
The gulls stretched barbarous throats
Over the creels, the haddock lines, the boats.
His mortal pain
All day hung tangled in that lyrical web.
‘Seventy years I've had of this’, said Ward,
‘Going in winter dark
To feed the horse, a lantern in my ﬁst,
Snow in my beard,
Then thresh in the long barn
Bread and ale out of the skinﬂint corn,
And such-like work!’
And a lark ﬂashed its needle down the west.
Always nice to meet another dawn...
John Donne Was A Party Animal
All The Experts Are Fucking Idiots
All the people who watch TV and read the Internet are genius experts on all things:
Earlier today, a photograph of man in a button-down shirt and a pair of black trousers exploded all over the internet. He was spotted escorting Amber Vinson, the second nurseto become infected with Ebola in the US, to a plane that would take her to Emory University Hospital in Atlanta. As many noted on Twitter, he wasn't wearing protective gear. Instead, he was holding a clipboard.
But here's the thing: although #ClipboardMan could be wearing more protection — gloves and a face mask wouldn't hurt — he doesn't look like he's touching Vinson. He doesn't look like he's touching the people wearing protection either. So if what we see in the video is all that happened, #ClipboardMan's risk of getting infected doesn't appear to be very high. After all, Ebola isn't airborne. It can only be transmitted by coming into contact with the bodily fluids of someone who's showing symptoms. Vinson, of course, has been showing symptoms for a few days now, but if she isn't projectile vomiting, and #ClipboardMan isn't going out of his way to touch things she has also touched, this probably isn't a big deal.
Still, this form of reasoning doesn't explain why he wasn't wearing a suit in the first place. Fortunately, ABC News took the time to dig up some information. As it turns out, biohazard suits aren't just hard to remove, they're also hard to see through. #ClipboardMan is the medical protocol supervisor charged with making sure that the people wearing protective gear don't accidentally trip over something, or touch a surface they shouldn't.
Because the dude clearly had no idea how deadly Ebola is. I'm sure he was touching the patient's infected poop, maybe even smearing it on his face and eating it (hard to tell from the picture).
BTW, this incident also proves that NASA could never have sent man to the moon because they never thought about radiation and gravity and good lighting. And don't get me started on that guy holding an umbrella...
Quakers Fighting Slavery
Violence is any day preferable to impotence.
I read in Friends Journal:
In John Brown, Abolitionist, Reynolds writes of two of Brown’s volunteers: “the brothers Barclay and Edwin Coppoc were examples of that oxymoronic type, the fighting Quaker.” He explains further: “Quakers had a long history of opposition to slavery and an even longer one of pacifism. . . . The Coppoc brothers . . . had no qualms about taking up arms against slavery.”
Yeah, Quakers ain't monolithic, and plenty carried a musket in war, including that unpleasantness over sacred states' rights. We all make our own theological, moral and political calculations when deciding to act. One thing you can't say is that Quakers just sit around, wringing their hands...
An old pic that I like.
Adam Smith Never Had Ebola
PS--I've heard similar stuff from a number of nurse friends of mine.
At Least I Have Not Made My Heart A Heart Of Stone
IS it thy will that I should wax and wane,
Barter my cloth of gold for hodden grey,
And at thy pleasure weave that web of pain
Whose brightest threads are each a wasted day?
Is it thy will--Love that I love so well--
That my Soul's House should be a tortured spot
Wherein, like evil paramours, must dwell
The quenchless flame, the worm that dieth not?
Nay, if it be thy will I shall endure,
And sell ambition at the common mart,
And let dull failure be my vestiture,
And sorrow dig its grave within my heart.
Gets Dark So Early Around Here
Waves And People
Waves roll in columns on their usual route –
Splashing and humming, they run;
People, too, stride in a lousy crowd –
Every one trails everyone.
Waves favor cold of their slavery more
Than heat of midday sunny rays,
People take care of their souls… But lo! –
Their souls are colder than waves!
We Slavs, such rays of sunshine.
Political Correctness Is American As Apple Pie
Political correctness is antithetical to our founding principles of freedom of speech and freedom of expression. Its most powerful tool is intimidation.
Rich Man Has Solutions To Wealth Inequality
Shocking that Bill Gates has a tenuous grasp on what poverty and inequality really mean, let alone how to address them.
Scenes From A Soft Morning
Phones suck at capturing celestial bodies, but the colors around the waning moon were lovely this morning.
We found a hula hoop on the soccer field.
How can you not run home on such a warm day?
If You Want The Wind Of Change To Blow About You
None Dare Call It Deportation
Oh, bless his heart:
Conservative legal activist Larry Klayman has filed a lawsuit against President Obama for “providing material support and aid to international terrorism and facilitating terrorism” by not implementing a travel ban on people from countries facing an Ebola outbreak.
Health experts have advised against enacting a travel ban, explaining that such a move might actually increase the risk of an outbreak, but Klayman has his own idea as to why the Obama administration hasn’t enacted a ban: anti-white racism.
Klayman writes in his weekly column that “Obama has favored his African brothers over the rest of us by allowing them free entry into this country” and “relegating whites and others who are not black or Muslim to the back of the bus has become an invidious form of reverse discrimination. This was not right when blacks were subjected to this treatment, and it is not right now – particularly given its deadly implications.”
“I do not advocate violence, and I want Obama to be taken alive to be deported and pay for his inadequacies under the rule of law,” Klayman writes. “But he must be forced from office as soon as possible, before all is lost.”
"That bainfull weed is arrived."
I've blogged a few times about the Boston Tea Party (the real version), but never about the other tea parties, which makes me as bad as the British. F'rinstance, there's what happened in Annapolis back in October of '74, when the Peggy Stewart was burned:
In the summer of 1774, Thomas Charles Williams, the London representative of an Annapolis merchant firm, tried to smuggle tea across the Atlantic into Annapolis by disguising nearly a ton of it in 17 packages labeled as linen, and loading it among the rest of the cargo on the brig Peggy Stewart. The captain of the brig, Richard Jackson, only discovered the true nature of the "linen" while at sea. A few years before, an Annapolis precedent had been set when its customs officer refused to allow any ships to unload any portion of their cargo until the tax on all of it had been paid. This now alarmed Captain Jackson because most of the rest of the Peggy Stewart's cargo consisted of 53 indentured servants.
The ship reached Annapolis on October 14, 1774, and Williams's business partners decided they wanted nothing to do with his attempt at smuggling. They could not think of risking the lives of the indentured servants by sending the ship back across the Atlantic during the storm season which had just begun. They paid the customs tax due and quickly got the human cargo ashore, leaving the tea onboard. The presence of tea aboard ship had inflamed public opinion in Annapolis. Williams and his business partners were threatened with lynching; their store and their homes, with destruction. To avoid that, the business partners offered to burn the Peggy Stewart, which they owned, along with its cargo, which they did, on the night of October 19. This came to be called the Annapolis Tea Party. The city of Annapolis marks this each year with a ceremony.
And they did this all without blogs, social media, and Fox News...
PS--And to this day we Americans tend to prefer coffee.
A relative sent me a 1922 piece she discovered about "The Jewish Situation in America," which included this picture and caption:
A CHRISTIAN BIBLE CLASS OF RUSSIAN JEWS
The Leader, Mr. Abram Pritsky, has recently returned from Russia.
Dude in the middle is Abram, my great-grandfather who came over in 1913, flanked by his wife on the left (um...his right). He apparently made the theological publications a couple times at least. Probably by design to cover his activities getting more Jews out of tsarist and commie Russia over the years. Or because American Christians found converted Slavic Jews to be a novelty.
Anyway, I never knew this picture existed (let alone the articles), even though a cropped version only showing the Pritskys currently hangs in our hallway. Neat!
All of this stuff has also corroborated some family lore, while on occassion contradicting certain elements of the timeline that had been passed down. The things you learn...
PS--My grandfather was born in the US, and naturally spoke English, but was forced by his father to learn Russian (which helped him in the Army during WWII). The lessons involved translating the Bible. Fun!
It's Time I Was On My Way
Apropos of finishing Book Three (no, not ROTK) of LOTR last night. And my growing to desire to run far, far away from the house right now.
as the seeing are the blind
by ee cummings:
as freedom is a breakfastfoodor truth can live with right and wrongor molehills are from mountains made—long enough and just so longwill being pay the rent of seemand genius please the talentgangand water most encourage flame
*munches on freedom thoughtfully*
"On the side of a hill in the sprinkling of leaves..."
Eclipses Portend Doom