The Resistance and The Democratic Party.

Senate Democrats must make up their minds about how to handle President Trump. CREDIT: AP Photo/Alex Brandon.

Senate Democrats must make up their minds about how to handle President Trump. CREDIT: AP Photo/Alex Brandon.

The Democrats won’t be leading the resistance, they are reluctantly following it, and it’s past time to commit. There’s an excellent, in-depth article at Think Progress about what the Dems are doing, and what they aren’t doing. Highly recommended reading.

…With protesters flooding airports in the cities that have actually been victims of terrorist attacks, American voters got their first glimpse of how Democrats might dig in against the new administration’s attempts to abandon longstanding U.S. values. Elected officials didn’t just offer moral support; they showed up in person and lent the power of their office to a concrete effort at combating injustice.

But even then, Democrats were not leading a resistance. They were racing to catch up with the people who moderate strategists and elected officials within the party’s fraying Congressional minority have been ignoring for years.

A gap has opened up between federal officeholders with a “D” next to their names and the wide majority of Americans who do not like President Trump. Staunch Senate resistance to Trump’s ill-suited and ethically challenged cabinet nominees last week suggests some in Washington are beginning to wise up. But the week also offered more evidence that Democrats believe voters will reward them for cooperating with Trump where possible — a misguided notion that would leave the party standing apart from protesters and resistance groups, and create a political vacuum strong enough to swallow the party for good.

For all the party’s faults, and all the harm its corporatism has done to left-of-center political ideas and public policies, further breakdown in Democratic cohesion and backbone would leave Americans without any meaningful opposition to Trump’s backward ideas — and no hope of rescuing the world’s largest free society from self-inflicted oblivion.

People who seek political office tend to view themselves as leaders. But Democrats find themselves instead following a wave of energy they cannot claim to have originated. While it may sting the ego to be behind the leading edge of anti-Trump resistance, the party and its individual members have a perfect opportunity to position themselves as joiners, helpers, and colleagues of a budding populist movement.

Both the Democratic Party and the country are better served by these leaders becoming a part of that movement rather than by attempting to manage it — or appearing to betray it in the name of Beltway compromise.

I can’t emphasise the truth of the above enough. The notion of playing along or picking your battles is one which alienates all those who see the rapidly widening cracks under our feet. It’s often a snort of disgust to be heard after a democrat decides to compromise, like affirming Ben Carson, the idiot’s idiot, to be in charge of housing. There isn’t time for democrats to make up their mind here, while shuffling their feet and having debates over the merit of this, that, or the over. It’s time for quick thinking and action. It’s troubling, to say the least, that those traits aren’t common ones in those who make up political parties.

…The initial stirrings of a real resistance movement in Washington run contrary to an old party conviction — one that guided Democrats into their early capitulations, and which still lurks behind wishy washy statements on Trump’s Supreme Court nominee and in closed-door meetings about “Triangulating Trump” on infrastructure and trade.

Leaders think that Republicans will operate in good faith so long as Dems do likewise. If they show how reasonable they can be, the moderate thinking goes, Schumer’s gang can pick off some Republican votes on the truly odious nominees.

But while this kind of horsetrading might have made some sense with Obama in the White House, it is flat-out nuts to accord Trump’s party the same faith.

Trump’s approval ratings are already down from the record lows that greeted his inauguration. Millions are already in the streets marching against him. He is bringing sycophants to the CIA to clap for him in front of the press. He’s telling Congressional leadership that voter fraud is real because a golfer told him a story once. His political brand is emboldening the men’s-rights crowd and the modern white supremacist movement, two allies sure to further taint his reputation.

It is hard to craft “be reasonable” into an effective political brand even in more stable times. Obama-era Democrats should have learned that lesson in 2010 and 2014 as Republicans were rewarded for years of hardline obstruction.

Another truth. For the whole of the Obama administration, rethugs pulled every filthy trick in the book, even to the point of shutting the government down in a massive tantrum, to get what they want, and no one in the democratic party seems to learn from that behaviour – they continue to behave as though being submissive and conciliatory will work, when it’s been shown time and time again that it won’t. When you’re up against an immoral force, caving is never an effective strategy.

 The few voters who pay obsessive attention to political news may notice Democrats’ commitment to being the adult in the room and reward it. But most Americans won’t see or hear about or understand the intricate machinery of Democratic grownup-ism. They will instead see flashes of Democrats collaborating with Trump, blurring the brand distinction between a Democratic vision for the future and Trump’s bug-eyed retreat into fear and vengeance.

Digging in to fight every battle, on the other hand, would ensure that even casual viewers hear Democrats blasting a constant bullhorn of objection, defiance, and “no.” Becoming the party of no in opposition to Trump would put Democrats on the moral high-ground. The approach urged by party moderates, though, actively privileges a different, stodgier set of values over those of justice, equality, tolerance, and broad economic opportunity.

Yes, yes, yes, yes. And yes.

Senate collegiality is a value. Continuity of administrative competence in Washington agencies that directly touch Americans’ lives every day is a value. Deference to the 46 percent of 2016 voters who put a madman in the White House is a value, too. But they are not ideas that can rekindle a party.

Yes, yes, yes, yes. And yes.

The absolutist rejection of Trump policies on Capitol Hill is a prerequisite for Democrats’ resistance efforts. But it is not, on its own, a resistance movement.

Movements happen in streets, living rooms, diners, bars, and churches. They operate from communities upward. Their structure is bottom-up rather than top-down, which can leave would-be leaders of a Trump resistance who hold federal office on unsure footing. If they attempt to stake out leadership positions on behalf of airport protesters and women’s marchers and defiant federal bureaucrats, will they appear to be big-footing organic populism that’s driving them left?

But it is not complicated to hedge against this risk. Democrats simply have to go to the people directly.

[…]

If there are in fact any Trump moderates, they are severely outnumbered within his movement by dyed-in-the-wool anti-liberals genuinely eager to ban Muslims, wall off Mexico, and lock up every black woman who cusses at a cop. Democrats can speak to the gettable independent voter and say “no” to all things Trump at the same damn time — and there is simply nothing they could ever say that would split loyalists from their glib, TV-savvy president.

So instead of trying to out-argue the ogre in the White House, Democrats must bypass him and the national media figures that jump at his every little mendacity like a crow leaps at a shiny pebble. They must communicate directly with the people. And in doing so, they must surrender their sense of being entitled to call themselves leaders — and embrace instead the power of following.

Many more yeses. Think Progress has the full article, highly recommended.

A Fitting Trump Logo and Two Border Walls.

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© Tucker Viemeister.

American industrial designer Tucker Viemeister has designed a logo for Donald Trump based on Nazi insignia to reflect the billionaire’s “racist hate mongering”.

The logo, featuring a tilting letter T inside a white circle on a red background, resembles the swastika symbol used by the Nazis.

Viemeister created the logo in April last year, before Trump became the Republican party’s official presidential nominee, posting it on Twitter along with the words “I hope they [Trump’s supporters] don’t like it!”

He also published the design on his website with a short statement that says: “Design can show what bad things have in common, like this logo I created for Trump’s campaign of bigotry and violence.”

Following Trump’s inauguration as president and his introduction last weekend of the controversial executive order banning people from seven Muslim-majority countries entry to the United States, Viemeister said the logo had new and sinister relevance.

tucker-viemeister-nazi-trump-logo-design-graphics-_dezeen_1704_col_1

“Obviously the logo is a spin on the Nazi insignia because there is a correlation between Trump’s racist hate mongering and the Nazis,” he told Dezeen.

“I’m worried that his followers will adapt it for the very opposite reasons I made it,” he continued. “They might like that connection with those white power fascists.”

“I wish I could make something that would help those followers become more inclusive and tolerant so that we can all work together to solve the issues that we all confront.”

Via Dezeen. Tucker Viemeister’s site. Moving on to the fabulous IKEA border wall! Simple! Inexpensive! Can be put together with one hex key! Only two people required!

WallUS

Washington (dpo) – “Too expensive!” “Too complicated!” “Unrealistic!” – This is the sort of criticism US President Donald Trump is currently facing over plans to build a wall along the border with Mexico. An offer from home furnishings brand, IKEA, could solve all of these problems with a single blow.

The Scandinavian furniture maker has offered the USA a practical, ready-made solution with “Börder Wåll”. All they need to do is pick it up in a van from the nearest IKEA branch and put it up where they want it to go. Totalling US $9,999,999,999.99, “Börder Wåll” is significantly cheaper than a conventional wall. Estimates suggest that a conventional wall would cost between US $15 and $25 billion.

According to government press secretary, Sean Spicer, President Trump is currently inspecting the offer:

TrumpKatalog

The simple, Scandinavian designed border wall (with a 5 year guarantee) is primarily made of pressboard with a birch effect and can be assembled with the help of a hex key. A 12,000 page instruction manual with easy-to-understand pictures makes construction child’s play – as long as there is not a single screw missing.
“However, assembly requires two people: one person can hold the wall while the second screws it together”, it states in IKEA’s offer.
The basic model of the wall is 33ft (10 m) tall and 1,954 miles (3,144 km) long, although the height and length can be extended as desired.
IKEA has already announced that it will design other products in the next few weeks that will be compatible with “Börder Wåll”. According to inside sources, this includes products such as the “Gåwk” watchtower and the “Råtåtåtåtåtå” spring-gun.

Via Postillon. German version here. (No, this is not for real. There’s no Ikea border wall, okay?)

Then there’s the wonder of The Pink Wall:

Mexican firm Estudio 3.14 has visualised the “gorgeous perversity” of US presidential candidate Donald Trump’s plan to build a wall along the countries’ border.

In response to the controversial proposal, a group of interns at the Guadalajara-based studio came up with a conceptual design that would celebrate Mexico’s architectural heritage.

 

estudio-314-donald-trump-mexico-border-prison-wall_dezeen_2

estudio-314-donald-trump-mexico-border-prison-wall_dezeen_1

The giant solid barrier would run 1,954 miles (3,145 kilometres) uninterrupted from the Pacific coast to the Gulf of Mexico, and be painted bright pink in the spirit of the 20th-century buildings by Pritzker Prize-winning Mexican architect Luis Barragán.

“Because the wall has to be beautiful, it has been inspired in by Luis Barragán’s pink walls that are emblematic of Mexico,” said the studio. “It also takes advantage of the tradition in architecture of megalomaniac wall building.”

Estudio 3.14‘s Prison-Wall project – developed in collaboration with the Mamertine Corporation of the United States – was undertaken to “allow the public to imagine the policy proposal in all of its gorgeous perversity”.

Visuals show the barrier traversing hills, desert, a river, and the border city Tijuana. The structure would also incorporate a prison to detain those attempting to cross into the US.

“Moreover, the wall is not only a wall,” said Estudio 3.14. “It is a prison where 11 million undocumented people will be processed, classified, indoctrinated, and/or deported.”

The team suggests that the wall could employ up to six million personnel. It could also incorporate shopping centre straddling its width, and a viewpoint from which US citizens could climb up and look down onto the other side.

A series of graphics to accompany the proposal range from posters calling for workers, to US currency emblazoned with the wall’s pink trail.

Via Dezeen. Estudio 3.14.

Glorious, Stubborn New Yorkers!

Rider cleans up Nazi graffiti -- Twitter.

Rider cleans up Nazi graffiti — Twitter.

Magnificent New Yorkers, at first appalled and silenced by nazi graffiti all over the subway car they found themselves in, pulled themselves together and removed every last bit of it. Warms up my little black heart, it does.

Gregory Locke wrote in his facebook:

I got on the subway in Manhattan tonight and found a Swastika on every advertisement and every window. The train was silent as everyone stared at each other, uncomfortable and unsure what to do.

One guy got up and said, “Hand sanitizer gets rid of Sharpie. We need alcohol.” He found some tissues and got to work. I’ve never seen so many people simultaneously reaching into their bags and pockets looking for tissues and Purel. Within about two minutes, all the Nazi symbolism was gone.

Nazi symbolism. On a public train. In New York City. In 2017.

“I guess this is Trump’s America,” said one passenger. No sir, it’s not. Not tonight and not ever. Not as long as stubborn New Yorkers have anything to say about it.

Wherever you find yourself, stand. If you’re scared, reach out, we can all stand easier with one another. Via Raw Story.

Right Wing Views: Women? Ick.

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Some nice staffers at The Advocate are reading Breitbart and other fascist publications, so we don’t have to feel all filthy clicking on those sites, but can still know what’s happening. It’s still a very nauseous trip, reading the excerpts, so be warned.

In the current political climate — well, in any political climate — it’s good to know who your adversaries are and what they’re saying. For this reason, we’re initiating a weekly roundup of the highlights and lowlights from Breitbart and other right-wing news and opinion websites.

Our inaugural entry (in more ways than one) takes note of these sites’ coverage and commentary regarding the ban on entry to the U.S. from citizens of seven countries, the Women’s Marches, and Donald Trump’s swearing-in as president.

[…]

Breitbart featured several other defenses of  the Trump order, including a column by failed vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin. She denounces “hysteria” over the order and says calling it a ban amounted to “fake news,” then concludes, “Trump’s executive action is a step in the right direction towards welcoming safe, loving, law-abiding, hardworking, patriotic people into our nation that was built on the backs of safe, loving, law-abiding, hardworking, patriotic people willing to assimilate into America’s exceptional melting pot.”

I, I…uh, oh fuck. For the life of me, I cannot figure out, at all, why anyone gives this person space to say anything. It’s nothing but word salad with shit dressing. uStates is a melting pot (not in the least exceptional) because of immigration. (After the genocide of those who were here first, natch.) FFS. All manner of safe, loving, law-abiding, hardworking people have been denied entry and re-entry into the Fascist States of America. What. An. Idiot.

The previous weekend was marked by Women’s March on Washington and sister marches all over the world. In case you think sexism isn’t alive and well, consider what the far-right sites had to say about the actions:

“Just another random protest march by the usual ragbag of leftist suspects, far too many of them blue hair, their whale-like physiques and terrifying camel-toes the size of the Grand Canyon.”

This isn’t from the comments section, folks. This sentence, grammatical problems and all, is from Breitbart contributor James Dellingpole. And wait, there’s more — after sharing his tweet saying men would probably have to fetch their own beers the night after the march, he writes:

“Very few of these shrieking munters — save the token celebrities — will ever find themselves in a position where they are able to fetch a man’s beer from his fridge because first they would have to find a man willing to share the same space with them.”

According to Urban Dictionary, “munter” is British slang for an ugly woman. Dellingpole finishes:

“Still, when all is said and done I think we owe those women who took to the streets across the world in their various pod groups a massive favour. They have reminded us what a Hillary presidency would have looked like every single day for at least four years. And they have swept away any reservations we may have had about the absolute necessity of having voted for Donald Trump.”

Ah yes, women, quelle horreur! Echoes from Euripides’ Hippolyta strike:

Go to hell! I’ll never have my fill of hating

Women, not if I’m said to talk without ceasing,

For women are also unceasingly wicked.

Either someone should teach them to be sensible,

Or let me trample them underfoot.

How little things change, literally, over centuries, when it comes to conservative authoritarians. In 195 bce, Cato the Elder declared:

If every married man had been concerned to ensure that his own wife looked up to him and respected his rightful position as her husband, we should not have half this trouble with women en masse. Instead, women have become so powerful that our independence has been lost in our own homes and is now being trampled and stamped underfoot in public. We have failed to retrain them as individuals, and now they have combined to reduce us to our present panic…It made me blush to push my way through a positive regiment of women a few minutes ago in order to get here. My respect for the position and modesty of them as individuals – a respect which I do not feel for them as a mob – prevented my doing anything as consul which would suggest the use of force. Otherwise I should have said to them, ‘What do you mean by rushing out in public in this unprecedented fashion, blocking the streets and shouting out to men who are not your husbands? Could you not have asked your questions at home, and have asked them of your husbands?

[…]

Woman is a violent and uncontrolled animal, and it is not good giving her the reins and expecting her not to kick over the traces. No, you have got to keep the reins firmly in your own hands…Suppose you allow them to acquire or to extort one right after another, and in the end to achieve complete equality with men, do you think that you will find them bearable? Nonsense. Once they have achieved equality, they will be your masters. – Livy, The Early History of Rome, translated by Aubrey de Sélin-court, Penguin Classics, 2002.

Cato’s speech failed, and the Oppian laws were overturned in 195 bce. This was the first recorded protest movement ever organized by women. It’s now 2017 ce, and we have not yet achieved equality, and still find ourselves needing to protest in the streets, much to the displeasure of misogynists everywhere, who still carry the attitude and mores of Cato the Elder.

There were more right wing comments on the Womens’ March:

“Commentators on MSNBC bragged about the crowd size of the women’s marches but, as a fellow female, I couldn’t help noticing the size of some of the marchers. There is a big difference between crowd numbers and crowd size.” — Townhall columnist Susan Stamper Brown

“Never have so many hotness-challenged crones so vehemently rejected being grabbed while simultaneously being at so little risk of it.” — Townhall columnist Kurt Schlicter

And conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’s Infowars site, which is one that really brings the crazy, approvingly posted a video of a conservative activist called Big Joe confronting a participant in the Women’s March in Los Angeles. “Planned Parenthood is a racist system,” he says. “Margaret Sanger [Planned Parenthood’s founder] thought very little of black people. She thought they were ignorant and shouldn’t exist and shouldn’t reproduce. … You want to be against racists? You should be against Planned Parenthood.” (Editor’s note: The assertion that Sanger and her organization were/are racist is a bald-faced lie, but many on the right believe it.)

Some things never change. The full article is at The Advocate.

The Materiality of Mourning.

Doris Salcedo, “A Flor de Piel” (detail) (2013), rose petals and thread (Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Gift of Mr. G. David Thompson, in memory of his son, G. David Thompson, Jr., Class of 1958, by exchange; purchase through the generosity of Elaine Levin in honor of Mary Schneider Enriquez; and purchase through the generosity of Deborah and Martin Hale, 2014.133. © Doris Salcedo, photo by Joerg Lohse, image courtesy the artist and Alexander and Bonin, New York, and White Cube, London).

Doris Salcedo, “A Flor de Piel” (detail) (2013), rose petals and thread (Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Gift of Mr. G. David Thompson, in memory of his son, G. David Thompson, Jr., Class of 1958, by exchange; purchase through the generosity of Elaine Levin in honor of Mary Schneider Enriquez; and purchase through the generosity of Deborah and Martin Hale, 2014.133. © Doris Salcedo, photo by Joerg Lohse, image courtesy the artist and Alexander and Bonin, New York, and White Cube, London).

Doris Salcedo’s The Materiality of Mourning is at the Harvard Art Museums (32 Quincy St, Cambridge, Mass.) through April 9.

Installation view of Disremembered IV (detail) in Doris Salcedo: The Materiality of Mourning, on display November 4, 2016–April 9, 2017 at the Harvard Art Museums. © Doris Salcedo. Photo: Harvard Art Museums; © President and Fellows of Harvard College.

Installation view of Disremembered IV (detail) in Doris Salcedo: The Materiality of Mourning, on display November 4, 2016–April 9, 2017 at the Harvard Art Museums.
© Doris Salcedo. Photo: Harvard Art Museums; © President and Fellows of Harvard College.

Hyperallergic has the full story on the exhibition. The Materiality of Mourning at Harvard Art Museums.

Also, go have a visit at the Center for Artistic Activism.

Silencing Dissent.

Demonstrators holds banners and signs as they protest during a march in downtown Washington in opposition of President-elect Donald Trump, Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017. CREDIT: AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana.

Demonstrators holds banners and signs as they protest during a march in downtown Washington in opposition of President-elect Donald Trump, Sunday, Jan. 15, 2017. CREDIT: AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana.

As people critical of President Trump’s Muslim ban flocked to airports this weekend to show their support for immigrants and refugees, one major airport decided to crack down on protesters.

Denver International Airport (DIA) began enforcing a rule on Sunday that requires anyone interested in demonstrating to submit an application seven days in advance. The regulation was challenged by protesters, including one who recorded a video criticizing Denver Police Commander Tony Lopez for violating his First Amendment rights.

There’s more about the Denver situation at the link.

But the movement toward limiting protesters’ free speech rights is not confined to the terminals of DIA. In anticipation of an active protest movement during Trump’s administration, multiple Republican-controlled states are currently pushing for legislation that would discourage and even criminalize nonviolent, public demonstrations.

In Minnesota, a billpassed a Republican-controlled committee last week that would allow cities to sue protesters in order to collect money to pay police forces required at the demonstration. Lawmakers drafted the legislation in response to massive Black Lives Matter protests that erupted in the state after a police officer shot and killed Philando Castile.

This sounds very much like what happened here in nDakota and the water protectors. People will get bilked for money, and I’d put odds on that money being used the way it was here, to purchase military toys for cop shops. All the better to threaten you with, my dear. Being able to sue anyone who protests will have the very chilling effect of shutting down effective protests, because too many people will not be willing to face such a consequence; most people can’t afford to face such a consequence. Allowing a lawsuit against people for exercising their constitutional rights, does that sound like a democracy to you? Speaking of picking pockets…

And in Michigan, Republican lawmakers are attacking both unions and protesters by pushing legislation that would increase fines against picketers to $1,000 per person per day of a picket and $10,000 per day for an organization or union involved in the picket. The bill passed the state House of Representatives in December, but was set aside by the Senate.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that will be an end to such legislation though, it won’t be.

Taking a different tactic, four other states are considering anti-protest laws that would target demonstrators who protest on the streets, according to The Intercept. The bills have all been introduced in the last few months as responses to high-profile protests by Black Lives Matter activists and opponents of the Dakota Access Pipeline that shut down highways.

The Intercept summarized the bills that Republican lawmakers have proposed in North Dakota, Minnesota, Washington, and Iowa:

In North Dakota, for instance, Republicans introduced a bill last week that would allow motorists to run over and kill any protester obstructing a highway as long as a driver does so accidentally. In Minnesota, a bill introduced by Republicans last week seeks to dramatically stiffen fines for freeway protests and would allow prosecutors to seek a full year of jail time for protesters blocking a highway. Republicans in Washington state have proposed a plan to reclassify as a felony civil disobedience protests that are deemed “economic terrorism” … And in Iowa a Republican lawmaker has pledged to introduce legislation to crack down on highway protests.

“This is a marked uptick in bills that would criminalize or penalize protected speech and protest, and every person should be alarmed at that trend,” she said, calling the bills unconstitutional. “We should also be alarmed by the attitude they betray, which is that when Americans get out into the streets and make their voices heard — recently, in record numbers — their elected representatives’ response is not to listen to those concerns but to attempt to silence and criminalize them.”

“That goes against the very fabric of our constitutional democracy, and legislators introducing these bills should be ashamed,” she added. “To try to silence those who are speaking up right now is a betrayal of American values.”

Yes, they should be ashamed, but they aren’t. That’s because there is no democracy anymore. Gone, vanished, set on fire and up in smoke. Silence people, quash dissent, order compliance. If you can’t see where we are headed, it’s because you refuse to see.

Full article at Think Progress. Mano Singham has a post up about the revival of an old quash favourite: COINTELPRO. Oh, such bad news.

Betrayal.

Toddler Trump, by Sham.

Toddler Trump, by Sham.

Everybody’s talkin’ about it, the firing of Sally Yates. Before I head into town today, I want to take a somewhat different focus on this – language. Language is important. When you can’t look at the person saying something, language provides all the vital clues we need to analyse information received. Here it is, click for full size:

yates

This goes right back to the post on Trump’s constant assertion that he’s smart, super smart, genius smart, the smartiest of the smarty pants, the bigliest IQ ever, and his complete lack of a vocabulary, in spite of all that smart. The article linked in that post goes into detail, including analyses of Trump’s favourite words, of which, one is the word weak. I’ll concede that Trump is smart in the same way Wile E. Coyote is smart. Trump is no Roadrunner.

What concerns me in the above missive though, is the use of the word betrayal. Trump’s order isn’t, and wasn’t legal. Ms. Yates didn’t betray her office, or anyone else, but that’s language that is highly disturbing. When you use betrayal, traitor and traitorous is far behind. In a post yesterday, I asked people to note the use of the word comply. All these not so small signals are mounting up to be a screaming red alert. The fact that we’re now under a fascist dictatorship could hardly be more clear, and that’s being advertised, loud and clear at every opportunity. There is no “reasonable” in this, there’s no “necessary” either. What is there is yet another Trump Toddler Tantrum, screaming in disbelief that anyone could have the spine to not only disagree, but stand up to him. Ms. Yates was fired, not disappeared, but it’s only been two weeks. This is not going to get better.

The language is there. The signs are not only there, they are screaming. It’s full red alert, and that fact is going to slip right by way too many people. There’s already a move across the land to shut down any and all who protest. Here in my state, it’s been made legal to run down protesters. Hundreds of protesters and journalists in Washington are sitting under felony charges. Protesters in Denver were told they didn’t have a permit to exercise free speech legally. And so on, and so it is going. We are moving inexorably into a state where the words betrayal and comply are going to have a terrible weight, and the sword of Damocles is upon our heads. Speak now. Speak loud. Be Strong. Be Brave. Reject Silence. I understand scared. I’m scared. I’m wearing those pants into town today, into the heart of nDakota. Yeah, I’m fucking scared, but you all give me courage, and I wrap that around me like a cloak, and keep that strength and love and trust close.

No Free Speech Without A Permit.

Denver Police Commander Tony Lopez (YouTube).

Denver Police Commander Tony Lopez (YouTube).

Free speech, now illegal without a permit, so sayeth the cops.

Protesters at the Denver airport over the weekend were told by police that it was illegal to exercise “free speech without a permit.”

Denverite reported that over 200 people gathered at the Denver International Airport on Friday to protest President Donald Trump’s executive order banning travel from seven majority-Muslim countries.

In video posted to YouTube, Police Commander Tony Lopez can be seen advising demonstrators that they are in violation of the law.

“Stop doing anything that could be construed as free speech without a permit,” he explains.

I expect this glurge of nonsense just spilled out without thought, but still, it points to the ongoing lashing of the whip aimed at all those who protest. Of the 200 protesters in Washington who were hit with felony charges, one case has been dropped. The others are facing prison a/o outrageous fines of $25,000 dollars. Land of the Free. Right.

Via Raw Story.

Pants, Pants, Pants.

Pants3

© C. Ford.

Marcus wanted to know what was on the flip side, and this is it for now. The pants must be finished today, to be worn into town tomorrow. That ought to be fun – I’ll be at the pain clinic, which is, naturally, mostly populated by older people who listen to Fox news in the waiting room at a deafening level. Must remember headphones…