Using Technology to Deepen Democracy, Using Democracy to Ensure Technology Benefits Us All

Saturday, March 16, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Friday, March 15, 2019

Teaching Day

Off to the City under blue skies... Guy Debord and Naomi Klein today, Spring Break begins tomorrow... Things are looking up (so long as I don't look at the headlines till I get back home no doubt).

Thursday, March 14, 2019

Wannabe Dictator In Plain Sight

via PolitcalWire:
President Trump appeared to threaten potential violence against his political opponents, telling Breitbart [find it yourself] that “it would be very bad, very bad” if his supporters were provoked into getting “tough.” Said Trump: “I have the support of the police, the support of the military, the support of the Bikers for Trump -- I have the tough people, but they don’t play it tough -- until they go to a certain point, and then it would be very bad, very bad.”
No, I'm not "surprised" -- I'm disgusted, enraged, and as righteously motivated to expose and defeat Republican authoritarians (and their enablers) as ever, thanks.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Today's Random Wilde

To be good, according to the vulgar standard of goodness, is obviously quite easy. It merely requires a certain amount of sordid terror, a certain lack of imaginative thought, and a certain low passion for middle-class respectability.

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Monday, March 11, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Sunday, March 10, 2019

Sunday Rain Check

Handfuls of icy rain but also, and much more to the point, scattered hailstorms and rumbling thunderclaps of my midwestern upbringing have curiously migrated to the East Bay where they are the rarest and weirdest of occurrences... and that means no Sunday walk and brunch again this wet unwarm winter. Probably for the best: still reading a very fine if sprawling thesis by one of my grad students in preparation for her final review tomorrow. That and lecture prep more than fill this day with work and worry -- relaxation later, spring break is just one week away now. Just in time.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Saturday, March 09, 2019

Today's Random Wilde

The secret of life is to appreciate the pleasure of being terribly, terribly deceived.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Friday, March 08, 2019

Teaching Day

Off to the City. A few more words on Adorno and then it's Barthes' Mythologies and then Daniel Harris' more recent (but by now classic, at any rate for me) mythologesque essay "The Futuristic." Bad night after a few better ones means I'll be pushing past bleary throughout the three hours I'm lecturing, which is never my favorite. Plan to prep, and ideally find some pep, on the train and then the bus to and through the City to our Fort Mason grad campus sprawled out over the Bay...

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Thursday, March 07, 2019

Today's Random Wilde

But what is the difference between literature and journalism? Journalism is unreadable and literature is not read. That is all.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Wednesday, March 06, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Wildthyme

Reading Paul Magrs's Phoenix Court quartet as I fall deeper down this literally lifesaving Whovian fanhole that has sustained me and re-invigorated me since last summer, at this point extending to every Doctor, across the Sarah Jane Adventures, through Elizabeth Sandifer's Tardis Eruditorum essays (I've bought three of the books and await re-issues of the later ones) and still chewing through volume after volume of About Time. It's an old and familiar strategy, when I was bullied and battered as a kid I retreated into Tolkein and Herbert and Heinlein and Star Trek, and now coming out of the panic and depression and rage of my health-scare and then this whole Trumpmerican fiasco I find the insanely rich ramifying worlds of Whovian fandom to roll around in and fall in love with falling in love with again. Thank the billion billion goddesses for sfnality.

Tuesday, March 05, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Monday, March 04, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily (And Sometimes Belatedly)

Saturday, March 02, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daiy

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Gun background checks and Medicare for All...

I'm Aliiiiiiive...

These last few years since the one-two punch of my bloody medical emergency and then this whole Trumpmerican catastrophe have often felt like a bit of a slog, with insomnia and panic attacks and depression forever rumbling threateningly in the background, even on good days, and then suddenly, you wake up after a couple of reasonably productive days, after a couple of reasonable nights' sleep, after a decent patch of amusements and engagements and patient efforts and suddenly it feels like spring may be around the corner and this grumpy superannuated burned-out has-been husk finds a smile and the mood is altogether different, you feel less defeated and more like raising hell, who knows how long, but here goes...

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Sunday Walk

Subdued walk after more insomniac shenanigans this weekend, but quite lovely and sunny and cool I must say. Went to the rose garden with Eric, where everything is pruned back to stems awaiting spring's explosion in about a month's time. Rashly changed my usual omelette order to a grilled cheese and tomato sandwich at our diner this morning. I have a whole week to regret that uninspired decision in... Finishing up the first third of term this week, my theory survey courses have provided the groundwork -- Marx, Nietzsche, Freud -- fetish, figure, fact -- and now we turn to postmarxist, biopolitical, intersectional, ecological elaborations and applications and subversions for the next two thirds. I would be enjoying myself if it weren't for all the extra stuff I have to do, recc letters, studio visits, office hours, union stuff, independent studies, thesis students, a million little administrivial tasks a couple more of which seem to get larded onto my duties with each passing year. As it is, it's a slog and I'm always swamped and walking the buzzsaw's edge of burnout.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Friday, February 22, 2019

Teaching Day

Brutal insomnia last night -- these still happen occasionally, unfortunately -- makes for a brutally long day lecturing in the City. The sun is shining, which means I don't have to walk to the train and from the bus in wind and rain at any rate. Lecture today weaves more on Marx's fetishized commodity with Freud's sexual fetishism. Plenty to talk about there, even if Freud always grosses me out a bit to teach. Before that sprawling three hours of lecturing, I'm devoting an hour or so to an independent study student working on eco-feminist texts that feel rather more exciting than the fetishism texts I'll be droning on about later...

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Dailly

Teaching day, another twofer.

Thursday, February 21, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

At Home With Amy Sedaris

Pleased to see this profile of Amy Sedaris and her latest show (now in its second season) in the Guardian. Eric and I were just commenting how the show feels fresh and wonderful like watching Pee Wee's Playhouse or the early seasons of Drag Race did (or, of course, Strangers With Candy, probably the only show certain faggots of a certain age, meaning me, quote as often as AbFab). Quite a few years ago I got Eric a book for Christmas by Amy Sedaris (we're an Amy not a David household) called "I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence" which appears to be a premonitory rumbling of the fantastic show we are getting now. I continue to expect great things, among them, great disappointments.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Another twofer today:

Monday, February 18, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Penelope Keith

Spent much of the weekend enjoying Penelope Keith's turn as Judith Bliss in Coward's Hay Fever and many sunny silly episodes of "To The Manor Born." May pull out our old set of "Good Neighbors" next...

Sunday, February 17, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Sunday Walk

A blustery blue-sky day, Eric and I strolled the neighborhood streets on the way home from brunch at our Piedmont Avenue diner, looking at all the new blooms starting to come in. We finished up with a walk through St. Mary's cemetery, a smaller charming place right next to the sprawling Mountain View next door. Bustle of open houses gave a bit of buzz to the chilly Sunday afternoon, but the number of lingering vacant storefronts feels a bit ominous...

Saturday, February 16, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Harris Is The Frontrunner

via the generally-vile Politico:
Dolores Huerta, the iconic labor and civil rights leader who co-founded what became the United Farm Workers, is endorsing Sen. Kamala Harris for president... Huerta, who started the National Farmworkers Association alongside the late Cesar Chavez, is also signing onto Harris’ campaign as a California co-chair, joining Rep. Barbara Lee, a former Congressional Black Caucus chair, who endorsed Harris on Wednesday.
Gosh, Kamala Harris really is lining up some significant early endorsements. This suggests organizational strengths that will matter mightily soon enough. I also understand that since her campaign rollout she has been polling third behind the male pale stale Biden and Bernie (who have obvious name-recognition advantages this early out -- a billion billion local goddesses, I beg you, please, prevent their nomination!) while, interestingly, neither Elizabeth Warren nor Kirsten Gillibrand seems to have moved the needle much with their own rollouts. We'll see what, if anything, that portends. Harris is shaping up to be the frontrunner as far as I can see. That worries and encourages me in about equal measure, to be honest, and memories of HRC remain, to say the least, raw as a sawblade. As I said when I read Barbara Lee's endorsement, I'm intrigued by Harris's professionalism early out but not yet ready to commit to any of the candidates myself. I still like Warren and Brown quite well, I find Booker more than usually charismatic whatever my quibbles with him, and Beto is a real question mark for me and I am quite open to hearing his answers. Yeah, I'd hold my nose and vote for Biden or Bernie if it came, somehow, unaccountably, to that truly yucky eventuality.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For... Kamala Harris

I cheerfully voted for Kamala Harris for Senate and would do so again for President in a year's time -- I will vote for any Democrat, including awful superannuated white males like Biden or Bernie if it comes to that -- but this is too early for me to sign on to an endorsement this time around. Please, fauxvolutionaries, refrain from "informing" me in comments of the many reasons Harris is "canceled" etc etc. I already know well and disapprove much of Harris's law-enforcement history, and I respect if that's a line too far for anybody so long as that line is then applied judiciously (Biden may be more execrable on this score than Harris and Klobuchar deserves comparable scrutiny she doesn't usually get, eg -- and none of this makes ANY Democrat worse than a Donald Trump "re"-"election" and I would hope all such critiques, all efforts to productively pressure future Presidents to progressive policies and accountability, on whatever issues, would remain better attuned by now to reactionary opportunism in a time of ascendant authoritarianism amid climate catastrophe -- not that I put anything past preening parochial bros once the purity cabaret begins again). Anyway, nearly every day I post some news item under the title "Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily" because I am that rarest and luckiest of citizens, an anti-racist democratic eco-socialist feminist queer atheist vegetarian aesthete who gets to live in the most beautiful and diverse city in America, Oakland, California, represented by one of the most actually-progressive Democrats in the Party, Barbara Lee. When Lee endorses my Senator for President, you better believe I stand up and pay attention to that... but for a little while at least, Barbara Lee is speaking in this case, just for herself. I want to see what Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, and Sherrod Brown have to say for themselves for a few months as well...

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily


Another twofer, since I'll always post her Green New Deal promotions, whatever else I boost.

Trolls Under The Bridge


Republicans are smacking their lips at the prospect of getting Democrats on the record that they actually don't want to destroy the planet because Republicans are apparently as suicidal as they are genocidal.

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Twofer today...

Rainy Days And Wednesdays...

Days and days of rain in the forecast, so we trundled out on foot with our black metal handcart in the downpour and marched to Safeway for groceries. And now, my new eyeglass frames have finally become available, so we're off again into the gray mist so that my vision might sharpen past its present gray mist... Chilly and wet tho' it has been, shoes soaked through, cars sending up icy waves onto the sidewalk, Penny grumpy at being neglected, still errands with Eric are always fun, too (nice to know somebody loves me). Is it too early to hope for the world to be waking...?

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Monday, February 11, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Teaching Day

Off to the City I go, to meet an MA thesis student then lecture for a few hours on Nietzsche. If it weren't for the commute, I'd be looking forward to it.

Sunday, February 10, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily (Weekly Address Edition)

Sunday Walk

Chilly but at last a sunny Sunday after over a month of rainy days and workaday weeds kept postponing our cherished long walks... Said hello to our friends at our favorite diner on Piedmont Avenue, then roved across Mountain View cemetery for the first time in weeks. Everything is lush and green after all the rain, but you have to look a little to find the blooms, tiny fuzzy in shades of blue and lavender and purple especially. There is a row of plum trees along a path near the hill of massive stone monuments we call Numenor (better known as Millionaire's Row) where the year's first pink blossoms usually appear in profusion like a shower of petals and, indeed, just as we hoped you could see the first buds popping up like a spray of stars. In a couple of weeks it will be a showcase -- and then we are just a couple of weeks from the tulip festival, then Morecom will explode with roses, then the red bougainvillea will stuff the leafy boughs with flames and then Spring Break is upon us...

Saturday, February 09, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Read The Real Green New Deal Resolution

Rainy Days

Hoping we won't get rained out of our weekly walk and brunch this week, but the cold gray rain keeps on pouring down... Drizzle made an icy companion at the bus stop last night waiting to return home after my long teaching day in the City. Cloudcover makes the short days of winter seem shorter still, day after day. Nice to think of the snowpack and reservoirs getting plump and replenished before drought and fireseason wreak their climate-catastrophizing hellfire next summer and fall, but still it's a bit depressing to be housebound in this damp winter dark week after week, I honestly don't know how folks in Portland and Seattle cope.

Friday, February 08, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Stacey Abrams' Doctor Is Tom Baker



I find this delightful, indeed. And a fine choice, tho' not my own (and don't ask).

Thursday, February 07, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Wednesday, February 06, 2019

Barbara Lee Speak For Me Daily

Tuesday, February 05, 2019

SOTU STFU (And Now For Something Completely Different)

Think I'll watch this instead:

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Monday, February 04, 2019

Teaching Day

Off to the City to meet with a thesis student and then lecture for a few hours more, Quarrel of the Ancients and Moderns, Kant's existential panic, paradox and critique in DuBois and Wilde. Hoping the promised rain showers don't drench me on my walk to and from the train. My hopes these days, as you see, tend to be modest.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Sunday, February 03, 2019

Today's Random Wilde

Football is all very well as a game for rough girls, but is hardly suitable for delicate boys.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Sunday Walk

Looks like gray drizzle is keeping us from yet another Sunday walk and brunch. I hope all the snowpack and reservoirs are plump and full for once and that perhaps next summer will be less droughty and next fire-season less hellacious. Spending the day reading an MA thesis and prepping a lecture, back to the thankless grind of adjunct routine.

Saturday, February 02, 2019

What Did You Expect?

Northam was a Republican until 2000 and voted for Bush.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Friday, February 01, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Teaching Day

Off to the City this morning -- thrilled not to see the torrential downpour the weather report has been predicting. Quite a buffet in critical theory today: Fontenelle on Europe's first modern culture war, Kant on the meaninglessness of historical evil, DuBois on how it feels to "be" a problem, and Wilde's paradoxical socialism. We'll see just how far I manage to get with all these weird and wonderful texts.

Thursday, January 31, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Our Top Ten Comedy DVD Sets

(Listed roughly chronologically, since our favorites change according to mood. All of these are especially delightful to watch high during Republican administrations. Recommended for survival and flourishing.)

Bewitched
Monty Python's Flying Circus
The Golden Girls
Red Dwarf
Absolutely Fabulous
The Vicar of Dibley
Strangers With Candy
30 Rock
Parks and Rec
Archer

I'm No Good At The Internet Anymore...

...but I'm getting much better at real life. It's not the worst exchange to make.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Pelosi Summing It Up, Pelosi Summoning It Up

“Our diversity is our strength. But our unity is our power. And that is what maybe the president underestimated.” -- Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), quoted by the Washington Post.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Friday, January 25, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Teaching Day, Here's the Syllabus

Back to school, back to the City today. I'm teaching both graduate and undergraduate versions of my introductory survey for critical theory at SFAI this term. As always for a first lecture, I'm full of butterflies and running on little sleep. Here is the syllabus for today's class, Monday's undergraduate version is not identical (requirements differ, a couple texts get added and dropped, or switched for flow, etc) but much the same, indeed I've taught versions of this course nearly every term for years. Last year saw major revisions, but this year is much the same still:

An Introduction to Critical Theory
Spring, 2019, San Francisco Art Institute

Instructor: Dale Carrico, dcarrico@sfai.edu; ndaleca@gmail.com
Course Blog: https://introcritsfai.blogspot.com/2019/01/our-syllabus.html
Fridays, 1-3.45pm, SR 1 Fort Mason, 1/22/18--5/10/18



Rough Basis for Grade: Att/Part, 20%; Reading Notebook, 15%; Co-facilitation, 15%; Final Paper, 16-20pp., 50%.

Course Description:

"The philosophers hitherto have only interpreted the world, but the point is to change it." -- Karl Marx

"Feminists are no more aware of different things than other people; they are aware of the same things differently. Feminist consciousness, it might be ventured, turns a 'fact' into a 'contradiction.'" -- Sandra Lee Bartky

"Artists inhabit the magical universe." -- William Burroughs

This course is a chronological and thematic survey of key texts in critical and cultural theory. A skirmish in the long rivalry of philosophy and rhetoric yielded a turn in Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud into the post-philosophical discourse of critical theory. In the aftermath of world war, critical theory took a biopolitical turn in Arendt, Fanon, and Foucault -- a turn still reverberating in work on socially legible bodies by writers like Haraway, Spivak, Butler, and Puar. And with the rise of the global precariat and climate catastrophe, critical theory is now turning again in STS (science and technology studies) and EJC (environmental justice critique) to articulate the problems and promises of an emerging planetarity. Theories of the fetish define the turn of the three threshold figures of critical theory -- Marx, Nietzsche, and Freud (commodity, sexuality, and ressentimentality) -- and fetishisms ramify thereafter in critical accounts from Benjamin (aura), Adorno (culture industry), Barthes (myth), Debord (spectacle), Klein (logo), and Harvey ("tech") to Mulvey and Mercer (the sexed and raced gaze). We think of facts as found not made, but facts are made to be found and, once found, made to be foundational. Let us pursue the propositions that fetishes are figures we take to yield false facts, while facts are figures we have fetishized to yield paradoxical truths.

                Provisional Schedule of Meetings

                Week One | January 25 |
Fact, Figure, Fetish
Maps, Stories, Warnings by Way of Introduction

                Week Two | February 1 (Drop/Add Deadline is today) --
Ancients and Moderns, Margins and Centers

                Week Three | February 8 | Nietzsche and the Fetishism of ressentiment
   
                Week Four | February 15 | Marx and the Fetishism of Commodities
Marx on The Fetishism of Commodities and the Secret Thereof from Capital 
--supplemental Marx and Engels, Theses on Feuerbach and Marx on Idealism and Materialism

                Week Five | February 22 | Freud and Sexual Fetishism
Sigmund Freud, Fetishism 
Excerpts from Freud's Case Study of Dr. Schreber: 1, Psychoanalysis and Scientificity; 2,  Storytelling;  
3, Psychoanalysis and Patriarchy (Homosociality and Homosexuality); 4. Psychoanalysis Brought to Crisis

                Week Six | March 1 | Commodity, Aura, and Culture Industry
Walter Benjamin, Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproducibility  
Adorno and Horkheimer, The Culture Industry  

                Week Seven | March 8 (midterm grading period) | Nature As The Fetish; Or, Ideology Is Structured Like A Language
Roland Barthes, Mythologies  

--supplemental Daniel Harris, The Futuristic

                Week Eight | March 15 | Being to Having, Having to Appearing, Appearing to Branding
Guy Debord, Society of the Spectacle 
Naomi Klein, Taking On the Brand Bullies from No Logo  
--supplemental Naomi Klein, Patriarchy Gets Funky

                Week Nine | March 22 | Spring Break
 
                Week Ten | March 29 | Out With The Old, In With The New
William Burroughs, Immortality 
Hannah Arendt, Reflections on Violence
--supplemental William Burroughs, On Coincidence 
Hannah Arendt, The Miracle of Forgiveness and Must Eichmann Hang? (handouts)

                 Week Eleven | April 5 | Racial Fetishism and the Gaze (last day to withdraw with a "W" is April 12)
Frantz Fanon, Selections from Black Skin, White Masks
Laura Mulvey, Visual Pleasure and Narrative Cinema
Kobena Mercer On Mapplethorpe 


                Week Twelve | April 12 | The Carceral Archipelago and Abolition Democracy
Michel Foucault, from Discipline and Punish, Introduction, Docile Bodies, PanoptismAngela Davis, selections from Are Prisons Obsolete?

Michel Foucault, from History of Sexuality: We Other Victorians, Right of Death and Power Over Life

               Week Thirteen | April 19 | MFA Reviews


               Week Fourteen | April 26 | Intersections and Performances
Audre Lorde, Age, Race, Class, and Sex: Women Redefining Difference  
The Combahee River Collective Statement 
Donna Haraway, A Manifesto for Cyborgs 
Judith Butler, Introduction and Chapter One from Undoing Gender

                Week Fifteen | May 3 | Ecology
Aldo Leopold, The Land Ethic
Rob Nixon, Slow Violence and the Environmentalism of the Poor
Bruno Latour,
To Modernise Or Ecologise? 


                Week Sixteen | May 10 | Fact, Figure, Fetish in Planetary Assembly 
David Harvey Fetishism of Technology
Carol Adams, Preface from Neither Man Nor Beast and Manifesto
Alison Kafer, from Feminist, Queer, Crip 
Gayatri Spivak, Theses on Planetarity

Course Objectives:
 

I. Contextualizing Contemporary Critical Theory: The inaugural Platonic repudiation of rhetoric and poetry, Vita Activa/Vita Contemplativa, Marx's last Thesis on Feuerbach, Kantian Critique, the Frankfurt School, Exegetical and Hermeneutic Traditions, Literary and Cultural Theory from the Restoration period through New Criticism, from Philosophy to Post-Philosophy: Marx, Nietzsche, Freud; the postwar biopolitical turn in Arendt, Fanon, and Foucault; and the emerging post-colonial, post-international, post-global planetarity of theory in an epoch of digital networked media formations, anthropogenic climate catastrophe, and intersectional associations.
 

II. Survey of Key Themes in Critical Theory: Agency, Alienation, Aura, Cisheteronormativity, Critique, Culture Industry, Discourse, Equity-in-Diversity, Facticity, Fetish, Figurality, Humanism/Post-Humanism, Ideology, Intersectionality, Judgment, Normativity, Performance, Planetarity, Post-Colonialism, Queerness, Race, Recognition, Resistance, Scientificity, Sociality, Spectacle, Textuality, White Supremacy.
 

III. Survey of Key Critical Methodologies: Critique of Ideology, Marxism/Post-Marxism, Psychoanalysis, Foucauldian Discourse Analysis, Critical Race Theory, Gender Theory, Science and Technology Studies, Environmental Justice.
 

IV. Connecting theoria and poiesis: thinking and acting, theory and practice, creative expressivity as aesthetic judgment and critical theory as poetic refiguration, etc.

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Ugh

A terrible night after a long stretch of good nights as work resumes, schedules become demanding again, and headlines documenting the cruel stupid horror of Trumpublicans and tech-talkers start to feel like rubbing a raw wound again...

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Trumpproval

via PoliticalWire: "A new CBS News poll finds President Trump’s overall approval rating has dipped three points from November to 36%. Fifty-nine percent of Americans now disapprove of the job he is doing -- a high for his presidency." Nice! Wonder if this has anything to do with it? "A new Politico/Morning Consult poll finds 57% of Americans believe it’s likely that Russia 'has compromising information' on President Trump while just 31% feel confident that Russia is not blackmailing the president." Not just underwater, but more than half the country thinks Russia has the goods to turn Trump traitor? How on earth is this shithole shutdown status quo sustainable for another two years? All my life America has been cruel and stupid, but the madness of the last three years is really just too much.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Staying Strong

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Monday, January 21, 2019

Posted Without Comment

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Trumpproval

Plenty can go wrong in two years with a would-be authoritarian con-man in the White House and a whole national bigoted bullying brain-dead party supporting him in lockstep, there are plenty of reasons to stay vigilant and critical (ideally with minimal paralyzed panic or circular firing squads for once), but, well, turns out, Trump's historically unprecedented high disapproval mattered for the midterms, here's hoping it still matters when the time comes to vote the bastard out. Via my favorite headline news/politics summary electoral-vote.com:
Four new polls suggest that Donald Trump's base is beginning to show some cracks. A Pew Research Center survey shows Trump's approval at 37%, near the lowest it has ever shown. Even more important, among non-college whites, 50% approve of Trump's performance and 48% don't. That's a net swing of -15 points compared to a year ago. CNN's poll found Trump's approval among non-college whites at 45%, down 9 points since early December. Quinnipiac University's poll found Trump's approval among those voters slipping from +19 to +10, a 9-point drop. Then there is the Marist poll. 57% of the respondents said they would definitely vote against Trump in 2020 while only 30% would definitely vote for him. Among non-college whites, 42% said they would vote for him but 44% said they would vote for someone new. Polls go up and down, but there are three major things to keep an eye on. First, the longer the shutdown goes on, the more it hurts Trump. Second, the economy and stock market are doing fine at the moment, although there are signs of instability. If they go south, it will be a disaster for Trump. Third, Trump's team is still negotiating with China. What happens if China decides it prefers to wait for 2 years rather than make any permanent concessions of consequence? Any or all of things could shake things up quickly.

Sunday, January 20, 2019

Trump Hump Day

If I am not mistaken, Donald Trump was inaugurated President of the United States two years ago today. Two years from now, the next President will be. Whether he gets impeached or voted out, this long nightmare must end, we must end Trump Republicanism before Trump Republicanism ends us. Things are looking a bit better than they did in the depths of two years ago, but these two years ahead of us still look like quite a scary slog.

Sunday Balk

Another Sunday too gray and drizzly for our weekly walk and brunch, looks like. Winter in the Bay Area, such as it is. Next week teaching resumes and my unwelcome companion, the butterflies of stagefright, have returned after leaving me in relative peace for the marvelously restorative weeks of this holiday break... Looking forward to seeing familiar student faces, getting back to walking the City streets for work, taking in married life I suppose.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Happy Birthday, Penny!

Although we scooped up our bright bold beautiful kitten in April last year, Penny is one year old today according to the papers she came with. She remains a devil and a delight.

Barbara Lee Speaks For Me Daily