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Hekate

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Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 62,284

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We are now a nation of big cities and suburbs. *Very few* Americans have *ever* done farm work...

They/we simply don't know how and don't have the muscles for it either. This is especially true of stoop labor, the backbreaking jobs of growing and harvesting our fruits and vegetables.

Sure, a lot of backbreaking manual labor went in to running an American family farm in Ye Old Days, and it was taken for granted. But why do you think people left those farms by the millions when they had other opportunities? That exodus started after WWI, just about a century ago.

Since then, farms have been increasingly consolidated by agribusiness, and when they hire people they have to look for those who come from rural areas themselves and have the knowhow. Those people have to be willing, and there are plenty of places south of the border where life is so hard that even American farm labor (or chicken-packing) looks better than what they have. Sorry, it was ever thus.

I don't think the American worker is "too lazy" to do farm work. I think our workers will work hard at what they know. I don't think they are much inclined to travel far away from what they are familiar with in cities, all for the privilege of doing backbreaking work 6 days a week, and sleeping in their cars or sheds or thoroughly substandard housing, and gettng a thoroughly substandard wage.

PS: In case it's not clear, I believe immigrant farm workers are badly treated and deserve better. But refusing them entry is not the answer.

Trump can't see past tomorrow's TV ratings anymore. Putin is the brains in the story....

Trump never had a political grand plan, because he's not a politician. He is what he always has been: a rich kid who used Daddy's money to get his start, a failed businessman (bankrupt over and over), a huckster, a con man. He has not got a clue about how government works and why we have government. He thinks everything is a crooked business deal -- hence Ukraine.

Many powerful Republicans saw him for what he was, but thought they could control the monster and get more of what they wanted: power and money. Mitch McConnell is one.

Putin, otoh, plans to break apart Western democratic alliances. Think about that. NATO, Paris Climate Accord, European Union -- everything that statesmen sweated to achieve: stability and peace from 1946 onward, everything we hoped & prayed for when we thought our world might be blown to atoms in WW III. Every POTUS from FDR and Truman to Barack Obama.

To Trump, they are obstacles to "deals" where he can play one against the other for personal monetary gain -- he even thought NATO was a trade alliance. He is a very stupid and ignorant man. Putin is neither stupid nor ignorant.

To Putin, all those Western democratic states and their alliances are reminders that the glory days of the USSR as a feared and powerful empire are over, and he wants the power and the glory back. As long as the US and the European Union remain united, he can't get what he wants. If he can find the right cracks and drive wedges in, it all falls apart into separate squabbling nations without the power they/we have now.

Putin had a hand in Brexit. He has had a hand in agitation to break apart the EU. We know he had a hand in making sure Hillary Clinton did not become president and that Donald Trump did.

Breaking apart the US isn't Trump's fantasy -- he hasn't got the imagination. Becoming an actual dictator -- all Trump wants is the big parade and constant adulation, and whoever can give him that, well...

But every time someone here at DU fantasizes about breaking America apart into several nations, or breaking California apart into several states, or feverishly claims they's just doing a thought-experiment about a military coup to get rid of Trump (I remember similar about Dubya), I really wonder if they have thought this through.

And if they have not thought it through, Putin definitely has. It would be the end of us as a republic, the end of us as an international power.





It's baaaaack: a demand by certain DUers for a military coup in the US ...

Some of you have been around awhile, and some are new (or "new" ) .

I'm one of those who keep saying hell no.

But this is your opportunity to fully express yourselves. I would love to hear it explained in full: how the US military, which is designed to be non-political, would up and do what you want. How the US, which is designed to be a republic, would remain a republic after a military overthrow. How the inevitable armed insurrection by the heavily armed knuckle-draggers would be put down. How any of this is supposed to work to our benefit.

I really want to know. Thank you.

The Brooks Bros Riot was unique in its participants: well-dressed, upscale, & bound for GOP glory

Every so often someone posts the names of those jerks (so I know you can find it if you look) and you will be aghast at who they grew up to be. I think one of them was a young man named Brett Kavanaugh.

So far, the people participating in the current actions look like typical Trump cultists: downscale and none-too-bright. Someone is pulling their strings from behind the scenes, and the only "glory" they can expect is from the Rapture.

It matters because they are Swiftboating Joe Biden. If we don't fight back hard, the story festers..

...and metastasizes.

Remember when it happened to Senator John Kerry? He was a genuine war hero, wounded in action, who commanded a "Swiftboat" in the Vietnam War. By the time the GOP was done with him, they had managed to search under every rock until they found a couple of disgruntled vets who were willing to lie about his record, and they painted Senator Kerry as a coward who lied about his service and lied about his documented wounds.

That is the meaning of "Swiftboating." Take something good and honorable about a person -- in the present case VP Biden's unblemished reputation as a devoted family man -- and find some lowlife willing to lie and smear until he's destroyed.

That's what's going on here. As far as I am concerned Ms Ocasio-Cortez can go to hell. I am done with her.



LA Times: "How a stockpile of 39 million masks was exposed as fake"

Apr. 11, 2020

How a stockpile of 39 million masks was exposed as fake

A powerful California union that thought it had made a deal to purchase 39 million masks for healthcare workers fighting the coronavirus was duped in an elaborate scam that originated overseas, federal prosecutors say.

Authorities who stumbled onto the scheme while looking to seize the masks for the Federal Emergency Management Agency found there were in fact no masks.


This showed up from the LA Times in my email today. Just read and re-read this snippet from a Kafkaesque world.


Update on my brother (kind of funny)

Just before Thanksgiving last year it looked like #1 brother was going to die from complications related to COPD. He was in the ICU, home again, then back to the ICU. Sister, #2 brother, and I started preparing ourselves for coast to coast emergency flights over the TG weekend to say goodbye. I did something I've never done before, anywhere, much less at DU: I asked for prayers, and kind words poured in.

Meanwhile, someone at the clinic suggested a deep cleaning of his living space, on the chance that he was getting reinfected there. #2 brother knows the landlady, who's actually a very old friend of #1 brother, and at his request she hired a crew to wade in. Fortunately she also took a few "before" pictures -- because it cost us $1300. Ye gods.

He didn't get sick again. He stabilized. Deep cleaning, siblings, old friends, and prayers....

So here's today's update, straight from #2 brother, and it made me laugh. Sometimes being a cantankerous old coot really is what's called for.

Have either of you (we sisters) been tested? If not then Jay is the first. He called his doctor today (I think it is a nurse-practitioner at the clinic) and told them he has his yearly upper respiratory infection. They sent a "mini-ambulance" for him and strapped him in a wheelchair in the back and trucked him off to the clinic in Depoe Bay, where they tested him for both the flu and Covid-19. They then prescribed him a z-pack and tried to send him home. He did not go quietly and insisted that they stop at the pharmacy so that he could pick up the z-pack. Oh Mr. C__ they said, that is not part of the program! The Oregon Health Plan does not cover trips to your pharmacy! But I will have to walk back from my house to the pharmacy, and it is on the way! After phone calls in transit, they decided to bend the rules, and let him scamper into the pharmacy to get his cure. The driver had to take a break and check the air in the tires, or something.... Well, turns out the doctor called the wrong pharmacy, and they did not have anything for Jay and they would not call the doctor. That apparently is not part of the program either! So he said m'am, I am going to sit in this chair right here until you call them and get this sorted out. I am sick, I need the medicine, and I can't walk home and back as I can't drive any more.

So they did call the doctor, and get it sorted out, and the mini-ambulance took him home, with his cure.

And today, both tests came back negative, so he did not have the flu or Covid-19 when tested, but after the ambulance ride and trip to the pharmacy, who knows......

Well, it wasn't a Seder, but I lit candles, poured wine & called on absent friends & dead parents...

Well, it wasn't a Seder, but I lit candles, poured wine & called on absent friends & dead parents. Toasted Governor Newsom.
Cursed Trump, I admit it.

I stopped doing Passover years ago when DH wanted to do a drush on Buddhism (I ask you, is this the time? No, not really, when you're asking me to knock myself out for a Seder). We've been together nearly 40 years.

But what I am is a Mythologist (trust me, I'm a doctor) and someone more on the Goddess path than otherwise, and I couldn't get this plague and this wannabe Pharoah out of my mind.

I started an altar a week ago. Tonight we had candles and wine with our dinner, and we both toasted our absent beloveds, living and dead. Tomorrow I will harvest bitter herbs from my garden to add to my altar. Tonight, at last, the salt water of my tears is released.

There are lessons for us today in this thousands-years old story. Persevere. Keep going. Though the desert seems to go on forever, you will find the well of living water when you need it most. Drink deep. Live to tell the tale.

I raise my glass to you all, my friends.




Links to DU discussions regarding DIY masks. Quilter's' guilds all over the country are now sewing

....as fast as they can.

I sent the following as an email to my brother and sister on March 25, which seems like a year ago.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Cloth Masks, because you never know

A group of volunteer seamstresses in Ojai, Ventura County, made the news tonight because they heard about the shortage.

I make no warranties. These are simply the discussion threads I bookmarked that looked of interest, like the one for the 3D printer. Jennifer's son actually has one at home he uses for work, so I sent her that link after I sent it to you (last week?)

This links to a discussion thread because I don't quite know how to extract the photos etc. I only dispute the last comment because, well hell, when you have nothing else...
https://www.democraticunderground.com/100213127523

Another, from a medical journal, 2008
https://www.democraticunderground.com/100213130867

Pattern
https://www.democraticunderground.com/100213133357

Materials
https://www.democraticunderground.com/100213128319

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~



Sent from my iPad

We boast that the entire planet is intricately connected & are surprised at what travels with us?

Just have a look at the maps of airline flights -- daily, hourly. Seven Billion Humans.

No airports where you are? Never fear, little virus, a local highway will take you to the heart of the Navajo Rez, a local river and footpath will take you into the Amazon.

It's not about dietary habits that one part of the world thinks is tasty and another part of the world thinks is disgusting. It's about US as human beings, wherever we are.

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