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steve2470's Journal
steve2470's Journal
October 20, 2019

Woody Guthrie lived in a Brooklyn building managed by Fred Trump and wrote a song about how.....

woody guthrie lived in a Brooklyn building managed by fred trump and wrote a song about how much he hated it



A Story About Fred Trump and Woody Guthrie for the Midterm Elections

In 1950, Woody Guthrie moved into an apartment at Beach Haven, a cluster of sixteen residential buildings in Gravesend, Brooklyn, just a few minutes from the creaky boardwalk and frankfurter stands at Coney Island Beach. The complex was owned and operated by Fred Trump, which means that, for the two years Guthrie lived and wrote there, Trump was his landlord. It remains unsettling to accept that their signatures co-exist on the same lease agreement.

In the nineteen-seventies, Fred Trump was accused by the Civil Rights Division of the U.S. Justice Department of creating a “substantial impediment to the full enjoyment of equal opportunity” at Beach Haven; it appeared that he didn’t like to rent apartments to black people. (The case was eventually settled.) The complex’s reputation hasn’t improved much in the intervening decades. In 2016, Beach Haven, which is now operated by Beach Haven Apartments Associates, was fined for dumping two hundred thousand gallons of untreated sewage into Coney Island Creek each day. It is the largest fine that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has ever levied against an apartment building for the mishandling of human waste.

Guthrie didn’t much like the place—he took to calling it “Bitch Havens” in his correspondence—and, in 1954, he wrote a delightfully scornful song about Trump’s discriminatory rental policies. Several handwritten drafts of the lyrics—sometimes titled “Beach Haven Race Hate,” “Beach Haven Ain’t My Home,” and “Old Man Trump”—are presently on display at the Woody Guthrie Center, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Will Kaufman, a professor of American literature and culture at the University of Central Lancashire, in Britain, was the first researcher to discover the lyrics in Guthrie’s considerable archive. (Guthrie never recorded or published the song.) Earlier this week, I went to see them in person. The first verse is explicit in its indictments:

I suppose
Old Man Trump knows
Just how much
Racial Hate
He stirred up
In the bloodpot of human hearts
When he drawed
That color line

In his best songs, Guthrie is equally seized by feelings of outrage and hope. Listening to his records is still my favorite way to remember that those feelings can productively and even beneficially co-exist—that the former doesn’t necessarily have to eradicate the latter. Guthrie clung to an optimistic belief in the generosity and decency of all human beings. In the end, he believed, we would surely do right by one another. In 2013, Jay Farrar, Jim James, Will Johnson, and Anders Parker recorded a version of an unfinished Guthrie song called “Hoping Machine,” for a tribute record called “New Multitudes”:

October 18, 2019

(Jewish Group) After watching the USA and Trump, now I understand how Hitler gained power

It used to baffle me how such a horrible anti-semite and psychopathic ethnic-cleanser as Hitler could gain power. Well, after watching our population in the USA from 2015 to now, I really get it.

Warning, a rant is coming. If not in the mood, feel free to click out.

First, a caveat: yes, I am not saying Trump "is Hitler". Whatever anti-semitism Donald Trump has is much more muted than Hitler had.

As we all know, Hitler came to power in a Germany deeply steeped in anti-semitism. The years 1918 to 1933 were, at times, filled with political instability, vicious street fighting between the Communists and Nazis, hyperinflation, and economic depression. The German people were tired of the depression and the flaws of the Weimar regime. Hitler offered a simple solution: kill all the Jews and the Communists who were allegedly plaguing the country, and all would be great! Make Deutschland Great Again!

Hitler never legitimately won elective office even though his NSDAP party did well in the 1932 election. He was appointed Chancellor by Hindenburg, and the rest is horrible history. Theoretically, Hitler could have been stopped well before 1933, but that was the defining point where he had to be stopped. Just like the current USA, people were too busy struggling with the depression (or if doing well, apathetic) to pay attention to the horror taking place right in front of them.

If you're a reasonably intelligent person and paying some attention to politics, what Trump has been doing since 2015 should horrify you. He should have been crushed at the ballot box in a landslide of historic proportions. Instead, due to Russian meddling and other factors, we have this narcissistic psychopath who is the closest American presidential comparison to Hitler in history. Yes, Mussolini is a closer comparison, but I know much more about Hitler.

How in the absolute fuck have we allowed ourselves to sink so low to allow this demented power-mad asshole to disgrace the Oval Office ? Nixon was bad, but wow, Trump takes the fucking cake. I mean, if we don't impeach (and hopefully convict) Trump, what's next ? A much smarter more sophisticated version of Trump who cranks it up to 11 ?

May God have mercy on our nation, but people need to WAKE UP, PAY ATTENTION, and get rid of this Dictator-wannabe and never allow ourselves to sink this low again!

October 17, 2019

Turkish president Erdogan 'threw Trump's Syria letter in bin'

Source: BBC

In the letter dated 9 October, and sent after US troops were pulled out of Syria, Mr Trump told Mr Erdogan: "Don't be a tough guy. Don't be a fool!"

Turkish presidential sources told BBC Turkish that the letter was "thoroughly rejected" by Mr Erdogan.

On the day the letter was received, Turkey launched a cross-border offensive against Kurdish-led forces.

<snip material about letter>

In response, Turkish presidential sources said: "President Erdogan received the letter, thoroughly rejected it and put it in the bin."

Read more: https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-50080737

October 15, 2019

Halloween when you were a kid: fun, not fun, never did it, etc ?

I did Halloween up until I was about 10 I think. This was the 1960's (I'm 61). Absolutely no one worried about poison or razor blades in the candy (has that happened a lot ?). I feel sad for kids these days that their parents feel compelled to x-ray their candy to make sure it's not harmful. Yes, the good old days (at least for me).

Did you do Halloween as a kid ?

October 9, 2019

White House official told whistleblower Trump Ukraine call was 'frightening'


A White House official listening to President Donald Trump’s July 25 phone call with Ukraine’s president described the call as “crazy” and “frightening” and was “visibly shaken,” according to notes taken by the intelligence official who filed a formal whistleblower complaint after speaking with the official, and others.

ABC News has learned that the two-page memo, written by the whistleblower a day after Trump’s call, suggests that at least one aide to the president feared that Trump’s own words in the call were damning. According to a rough transcript of the call released by the White House, Trump asked Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelenskiy to launch an investigation into a political opponent, Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden, and his son.

The notes were based on a brief conversation between the whistleblower and the White House official and described “highlights” from the president’s call. The document was later provided to the intelligence community’s inspector general, who reviewed the whistleblower’s complaint. The IG has determined the complaint “appeared credible” and of “urgent concern.”

The White House had not responded to a request for comment. Trump has defended the call as acting on his duty as president to end corruption “even if that means requesting the help of a foreign country or countries.”
October 8, 2019

"Romney is the pressure point in the impeachment process": Mitt won't primary Trump--but he's.....



When it comes to impeachment, the Republican Senate, resting on the bedrock of Donald Trump’s base, has been viewed as an unbreachable wall. But what would it look like if it started to crack? The first sign might be an ominous quiet. The emergence of a second intelligence-agency whistle-blower, this one reportedly with a firsthand account that Trump withheld military aid from Ukraine to pressure its government to investigate Joe and Hunter Biden, complicates the president’s deep state conspiracy defense—and the senators on whom Trump’s political survival rests are mostly lying low. “The messaging is missing this time,” a former West Wing official told me. Even Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said last week that he would be forced to hold a Senate trial if the House impeached Trump. “There’s been a real increase in nervousness over the past three or four weeks,” a prominent GOP member told me. “Everybody sees what Trump did as such a clear abuse of power,” said another prominent Republican. “Whether it’s criminal or not is another issue. But it’s so blatantly over the line.”

There’s no flood of GOP refugees yet—but there’s unmistakable drift. Trump’s approval rating among Republicans is 87%, a drop of four points since mid September, according to the latest Gallup tracking poll. Meanwhile, Trump’s firewall at Fox News, a vital bulwark that protects his GOP base, has also shown signs of cracking. Tucker Carlson conceded in an op-ed that Trump’s actions were indefensible, though not impeachable. Fox News legal analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano called Trump’s Ukraine actions “criminal and impeachable behavior” last week. Behind the scenes, Fox board member Paul Ryan has privately told Fox Corp CEO Lachlan Murdoch to cut ties with Trump.

In the Senate, Ben Sasse and Susan Collins have made their usual equivocal noises—but not surprisingly, its Mitt Romney, longtime Trump antagonist and sometime suck-up, who’s become the standard-bearer, leading to questions as to what his game is. According to sources, donors have in recent days called the Utah senator and encouraged him to run against Trump in the primary. “There is a half-billion dollars on the sidelines from guys who are fed up with Trump,” a GOP donor told me. Their hopes were raised when Romney attacked Trump on Friday, tweeting: “By all appearances, the President’s brazen and unprecedented appeal to China and to Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden is wrong and appalling.” Former White House communications director turned Trump antagonist Anthony Scaramucci tweeted a poll showing Romney beating Trump 55% to 37% in a hypothetical primary. Trump fired back on Saturday. “Mitt Romney never knew how to win,” Trump tweeted. “He is a pompous ‘ass’ who has been fighting me from the beginning, except when he begged me for my endorsement for his Senate run (I gave it to him), and when he begged me to be Secretary of State (I didn’t give it to him). He is so bad for R’s!”

According to people close to Romney, he’s firmly decided against primarying Trump, an enterprise he believes to be a sure loser given Trump’s enduring GOP support. Romney has also told people that, as an unsuccessful two-time presidential candidate, he’s the wrong person to take on Trump. Instead, a Romney adviser told me, Romney believes he has more potential power as a senator who will decide Trump’s fate in an impeachment trial. “He could have tremendous influence in the impeachment process as the lone voice of conscience in the Republican caucus,” the adviser said. In recent days, Romney has been reaching out privately to key players in the Republican resistance, according to a person briefed on the conversations. “Romney is the one guy who could bring along Susan Collins, Cory Gardner, Ben Sasse. Romney is the pressure point in the impeachment process. That’s why the things he’s saying are freaking Republicans out.” (Romney, through a spokesperson, declined to comment.)

October 7, 2019

Johnson to Challenge the Queen to Fire Him, Sunday Times Reports

(yes I know this is two days old but didn't see it here in this forum)


U.K. Prime Minister Boris Johnson is prepared to challenge Queen Elizabeth II to dismiss him rather than resign as he attempts to push through Brexit by the Oct. 31 deadline, the Sunday Times reported, citing senior aides.

Johnson would not step aside if his Brexit proposals were rejected by the European Union, and even if members of the U.K. Parliament declare no confidence in his government and agree to a caretaker prime minister to replace him, according to the report.

Failure to reach a deal would set the U.K. on a course for constitutional showdown with few precedents: Johnson has promised to pull the country out of the EU on Oct. 31 whether the talks succeed, while Parliament has already legislated to prevent him from taking U.K. out of the European bloc without a withdrawal agreement.

“Unless the police turn up at the doors of 10 Downing Street with a warrant for the prime minister’s arrest, he won’t be leaving,” one senior Conservative said in the report.

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