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Celerity's Journal
Celerity's Journal
December 30, 2020

A Season's Greetings Message to Donnie, Rudy, and Their Fellow Klansmen

A time for celebration, forgiveness, and extending a warm hand to those with whom you may have had differences in the past. Well, fuck that.


This is the time of year for spreading joy and seeing the best in your fellow human being. A time for celebration, forgiveness, and extending a warm hand to those with whom you may have had differences in the past. Well, fuck that. To the discerning eye, you appear to be suffering on the way out. But my appetite is merely whetted. I pray in the coming days that suffering increases exponentially. Astoundingly, after years inflicting incalculable misery upon the people of this nation purely for the sake of greed and ego, the atrocities you are perpetrating at this late date exceed the sum of all previous atrocities. As you know so well and deep down in that place where your soul once was, you are not worthy of anything even approximating mercy.

May the cancer of your spirit— now clearly metastasizing on your pasty, creased faces—consume you visibly and whole. May your utter lack of humanity and empathy materialize as 200 proof karma swallowing internal organs, bursting blood vessels, and propelling you to pine for a sweet but elusive death. In all this time, I never quite figured out why it is you so loathe America, the country you seek to overthrow as I write. Is it the shards of meritocracy that still remain, enough for a Black man born with nothing to outshine you? Is it the thousands of vibrant, self-made women who spurned your menacing advances? Is it the millions of hard working people who find more organic satisfaction in their rigorous daily labor than you find in all of your pawns, schemes, and subterfuge? Is it the nobility of medical professionals, the bravery of soldiers, the dedication of educators?

Who can really say? All I know is through a combination of parasitism and neglect, you have done almost everything within the power granted you to destroy those granting it. And now, as it turns out, you must pay in ways that defy even your own gruesome imagination. I have reserved a front row seat. With each passing day—the clock seemingly slowing down in half-the-distance-to-the-goal-line fashion—your desperate clinging to misbegotten power increases. The options considered become more devious. The M.O. more toxic. The results more deadly. The endgame more cataclysmic. As unrepentant mass murderers—and pardoners of the same—you display the attitude of the garden-variety killer, who once venturing beyond a certain arbitrary mind-boggling body count determines all forthcoming bloodlust is essentially a freebie. May this cynical calculation prove as wrong as your claim that COVID-19 would just disappear.

There is no principle you won’t mock, no oath you won’t break, no line of decency you won’t cross. There is no responsibility you won’t eschew, no situation you won’t exploit, no person you won’t prostitute. May the coming reckoning bring searing child-like screams. Hallelujah, the chickens have come home to roost. After decades of lucky sevens you have rolled a snake eyes for the ages. While it is impossible to know what awaits those on the other side with literally no redeeming qualities, on this side, may the walls close in quickly enough to cause ineffable agony yet not quickly enough to snuff it out. Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, and Happy New Year, you worthless sacks of subhuman fecal matter.

December 26, 2020

WaPo: Biden says he'll reverse Trump immigration policies but wants 'guardrails' first


President-elect Joe Biden said Tuesday he will keep his pledge to roll back the Trump administration’s restrictive asylum policies but at a slower pace than he initially promised, to avoid winding up with “2 million people on our border.” Biden said immigration is one of the urgent matters he will tackle starting next month as the nation emerges from “one of the toughest years we’ve ever faced,” ticking off a list that included the coronavirus, the economy, racial-justice issues and “historic and punishing wildfires and storms.”

Biden had promised to end on “Day 1” a program that requires tens of thousands of asylum seekers, mainly from Central America, to await their U.S. immigration hearings in Mexico. But the president-elect said creating a system to process thousands of asylum seekers will take months, because the government needs funding to put staffers such as “asylum judges” in place. “The timeline is to do it so that we, in fact, make it better not worse,” Biden said, speaking from his home state of Delaware, delivering remarks ahead of the holiday. “I will do what I said. It’s going to take — not Day 1 — it’s going to take probably the next six months to put that in place.”

Advocates for immigrants hope Biden will terminate the “return to Mexico” policy, known as Migrant Protection Protocols, before the Supreme Court is expected to take it up next year. Biden said he is already working with authorities in Mexico and other Latin American nations, as well as with U.S.-based nonprofit groups, to carve a path on immigration policy. “Trust me,” he said. Biden said he was not dragging his feet but “setting up the guardrails” to find a solution to the immigration issue, instead of creating a crisis “that complicates what we’re trying to do.” Biden echoed what top advisers said this week to manage expectations about the pace of the new administration as they prepare to take office.

Speaking to reporters on a conference call earlier Tuesday, several members of the Biden transition team said the incoming administration would “need time” to undo “damage” to the U.S. immigration system and border enforcement policies that have severely limited the ability of asylum seekers to qualify for humanitarian protection. The transition officials echoed statements made by Susan E. Rice, Biden’s incoming domestic policy adviser, and Jake Sullivan, his pick for national security adviser, in an interview published Monday with the Spanish wire service EFE urging patience with their immigration agenda.

December 26, 2020

PA misses deadline to spend $108M in rent, mortgage relief from CARES Act (it goes to prisons now)


HARRISBURG — Pennsylvania tenants and homeowners missed out on roughly $108 million of $175 million in federal coronavirus relief because state programs distributing the funding made it too hard to access, Spotlight PA has found. The remaining money will be redistributed to the state’s Department of Corrections.

Over the summer, Pennsylvania created two new housing programs to spend money it received under the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act: $150 million for rent relief and $25 million for mortgage help. Thousands of struggling families applied up until an extended Nov. 4 deadline, as coronavirus shutdowns led to layoffs, lost wages, and missed rent and mortgage payments. Local governments and nonprofits administering the funds were inundated with phone calls and emails from people pleading for help with the demanding application processes.

Nonetheless, the deadline to pay out all $175 million was Nov. 30 and roughly $108 million was not used, according to the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, which oversaw both programs and was still finalizing the precise numbers on Friday. The legislature voted in November to redirect any remaining CARES Act funds from these and other programs to the Department of Corrections. The money will go toward payroll expenses for public safety and health-care employees, “or similar employees whose services are substantially dedicated to mitigating or responding to the covid-19 public health emergency.”

“It’s horrible to know that the state did such a poor job of helping people,” said Patty Torres, organizing director at Make the Road Pennsylvania, a Latinx advocacy group.

December 26, 2020

Former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers: "$2,000 checks would be a pretty serious mistake."

He is not even really for the 600 USD cheques.


"$2,000 checks would be a pretty serious mistake."

Former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers says larger stimulus checks to Americans could risk overheating the economy

November 30, 2020

Danish Hygge Is So Last Year. Say Hello to Swedish Mys.

The essence of mys is the feeling of warmth. And the best city to stock up on mys-making supplies is Stockholm.


Denmark introduced the world to hygge, the national pursuit of all things cozy and enjoyable. Something of a survival mechanism for Danes during the winter months, hygge (pronounced HOO-gah) often involves an abundance of candles, crackling fireplaces, comforting foods and the company of close friends. In Sweden, where the winters are even longer, darker and drearier, the concept is called mys (pronounced mees) — or the adjectival mysigt. And although the terms are very similar, Swedish mys refers more pointedly to an ultra-cozy atmosphere.

“Hygge is much broader than mys,” said Malin Lindqvist, a Swedish fabric designer who moved to Denmark seven and a half years ago. The essence of mys is the feeling of warmth, like being wrapped in a woolen blanket amid lighted candles while sipping a steaming mug of tea with a purring cat on your lap. The best city to stock up on mys-making supplies is Stockholm, and the highest density of small, aptly cozy, independent shops and boutiques can be found on the streets near Nytorget, a square on the southern island of Sodermalm, far from the city’s bustling central shopping district.

The front room at Tambur, which is styled like a kitchen and dining area.

A good starting point is Tambur, a boutique filled with things to make every home homier. Inside the two-room shop, the front room is styled like a kitchen and dining area, where woven baskets are strung from the ceiling above a rustic wooden table set with ceramic bowls and platters perfect for serving hearty pasta meals. The back room is filled with piles of fluffy linen pillows, a soft beige couch, subdued lighting and plaid orange-and-gray blankets made with wool from sheep on the Swedish island of Gotland. It has the vibe of a very plush living room. “The feeling I want people to get is that they’re coming home to me,” said the owner, Anders Widegren, while seated in the back room. Among the many covetable items on display, two particularly mysigt picks were a copper oil lamp from the Swedish brand Klong (2,749 Swedish kronor, about $324) and a special cast-iron pan for making plattar, thin Swedish pancakes the size of a coaster often served as a cold-weather dinner in short stacks with butter and jam (529 kronor).

On a corner three blocks away, Esterior is an interior design studio and shop with a more eclectic, playful style. The spacious store is filled with a mix of midcentury vintage furnishings and lighting, fuzzy Moroccan rugs and piles of striped velvet cushions for cozying up a couch. For low-fi entertainment by candlelight on a wintry night, maybe pick up an elegant chess set or a classic backgammon board (450 kronor each). Younger shoppers will find mys in their size at Beton, a serene children’s shop a block and a half away. This is the place to stock up on corduroy bonnets (170 kronor) and knee socks (65 kronor) in neutral earth tones. Instead of bright colors and plastic toys, the shelves are filled with wooden rattles, woolen overalls and soft leggings in muted hues from small, hard-to-find brands. “To be unique in Stockholm is important,” said the owner, Petra Gardefjord, who earned a following selling hand-sewn leather moccasins that she taught herself to make for her own children.

Young shoppers will find mys at Beton, a serene children’s clothing shop.




Mys is all about making time for family and friends. It’s easy to get addicted to the buzz of social media but the Swedes say it’s crucial we make time to relax and socialise. Rather than sitting on Instagram or Facebook on their lunch break, they'll take a stroll or meet a friend for coffee and spend the evening reading a book or attending a fitness class. They swear by the app Forest, which gives users virtual coins for taking a break from their phone, and the coins are then used to plant real trees around the world.

The Swedish approach to food is all about seasonal, local and organic produce. Making meals with seasonal produce benefits health, the environment and your bank balance. 'Eating foods when in season means that you’ll be eating the way nature intended it,' explains Nutritionist, Cassandra Barns. 'Summer fruits and vegetables tend to contain higher amounts of water, which dilutes their nutrient content. Compare this to winter fruits and veggies and you’ll find they’re richer in nutrients such as vitamin C and contain more valuable fibre.'

Part of ‘fredagsmys’ is to indulge in junk food, but the average sugary or carby treat can send your mood plummeting after the initial ‘hit’ has passed. Swedes swear by dark chocolate – especially made with raw cacao – can actually have longer-lasting benefits for your mood. Swedes have a saying that suggests that there is no bad weather, just bad clothing, so make it a priority to wrap up when the colder weather hits. So, when you next use the excuse that it’s too cold to go outside and exercise try to motivate yourself by simply dressing for the weather.

Achieving a good work/life balance is a significant part of the Swedish culture and they even previously trialed a six-hour working day. To avoid feeling overwhelmed try to prioritise what actually needs to be done and then what can wait until tomorrow, everyone needs some time out.


November 29, 2020

Final county recount leaves Miller-Meeks (R) 6 votes ahead of Hart (D)


The Clinton County auditor confirmed with KCCI on Saturday afternoon that (R) Mariannette Miller-Meeks received an additional two votes from their recount. This results in Miller-Meeks being six votes ahead of (D) Rita Hart in Iowa's second congressional district.

Miller-Meeks released the following statement: "While the race is extraordinarily close, I am proud to have won this contest and look forward to be certified as the winner by the state's Executive Council on Monday. It is an honor of a lifetime to be elected to serve the people of eastern and southern Iowa. Iowans are tenacious, optimistic and hard working, and I will take those same attributes to Washington, D.C., on their behalf."

All three members of the committee have signed off on the results in Clinton County. Clinton County was the final county to perform a recount for Hart and Miller-Meeks' race. Clinton County is Hart's home county.

More than 300,000 Iowans cast their ballots in this race. The Iowa canvassing board is expected to meet Monday to certify the results of the race.



SIX votes

I can now give a final tally for the House

222-213 Democratic majority.

5 defections and we cannot pass things (provided all the Rethugs hold together)

Net minus 19 from the 241 we had after 2018.
November 27, 2020

When will the American Empire collapse?


Every so often I come across an interesting piece on the cyclical nature of empires. How often they disappear. How frequently they show the same signs before falling. It’s all very fascinating. One naturally looks to the current political situation and finds parallels. You start to imagine that the American empire will collapse some day as well. But there’s a problem, I often find myself wondering…When? WHEN will the U.S. empire slip into the pages of history? In this article, I’m going to total up various estimates and theories on when the empire will collapse to come up with a “best guess” date.

List of Estimates and Empire Collapse Theories:

Sir John Glubb, The Fate of Empires — In this work, Glubb estimates that empires last about 250 years (10 generations). If we use 1776 for the start date of the United States empires, that would be 2026 as an estimated fall date. (Celerity's own add - I place the beginning at 1789 when the Constitution was adopted, so 250 years is 2039)

J. D. Unwin, Sex and Culture— Here, Unwin estimates that it takes about 75 years — 3 generations — after unrestricted sexual access for a culture to collapse or be conquered. If we use 1970 as the start of “free love”, that puts us in 2045.

Currency Dominance — The dominate currency of the world goes through various transitions — on average the baton passed about every century for the last 600 years. This would spell trouble for the US Dollar in the next ~30 years. If we use the Bretton woods agreement as a start date, that would put collapse around 2050.

Peter Turchin, Secular Cycles and Cliodynamics — puts the millennial generation as the upheaval generation, with major events taking place from 2010–2050.


much more at the top link

November 25, 2020

The Atlantic Daily: Our Guide to Cooking in Isolation

Cooks and non-cooks alike from around our newsroom share their best tips for navigating this strange Thanksgiving.


By now it’s a well-worn cliché to say that 2020 has been rough, and that the holiday season will be no different. Indeed, many Americans will likely (and should certainly) not be celebrating this Thanksgiving, that fraught annual feast, in the traditional manner. There aren’t any mashed-potato recipes good enough to fully distract us from how difficult and isolating the coming months will be, or to make up for not seeing loved ones (especially those we’ve lost). Without the ability to gather en masse, and against the backdrop of a still-worsening pandemic and crushing economic crisis, the search for a sufficiently comforting dish can feel almost existential.

But as we barrel toward the end of the year, I’ve thought a lot about something Ina Garten told my colleague Sophie Gilbert just a few weeks into the norm upheaval of quarantine. There’s something about a grilled-cheese sandwich, the Barefoot Contessa noted, that’s “not just physically satisfying; it’s somehow soul satisfying.” While scanning a slew of food magazines, blogs, and cookbooks in search of the perfect recipes for my own pared-down Thanksgiving, I kept coming back to the simple pleasure Garten described months ago. And though I probably won’t be serving up cheddar on sourdough, this year I’m hoping to find some comfort in the mundane repetition and small revelations of cooking itself. Below, cooks and non-cooks alike from around our newsroom share their best tips for navigating this strange Thanksgiving.

Don’t make a traditional meal.

As far as I’m concerned, the best part of Thanksgiving isn’t turkey and gravy—it’s spending all day in the kitchen, doing the kind of cooking we have time for only once a year. So dispense with tradition (this is the year!) and make whatever special, project-y meal your heart desires. In my house, it’ll be Julia Child’s coq au vin, crusty bread, and lots of wine, but in yours it could be bo ssam, carnitas, sabzi polo, or homemade gnocchi. Or, for that matter, boxed mac and cheese and a really indulgent, baroque dessert, such as baked Alaska. The only rule is that there are no rules.

Or make the whole feast anyway.

Hear me out: Thanksgiving is so well loved because of the food, so what’s the point if you’re not going to have the turkey and the gravy and the mashed potatoes and the sweet potatoes and the green beans and the cranberry sauce and the rolls and the pie? I’ve done Thanksgiving with just my mom for several years now, and we still cook the whole shebang, just on a smaller scale. Buy only your favorite piece of the turkey (we do the breast), use fewer potatoes, just bake your one must-have pie. Regardless, still make more than you need, because we all know that the best part is really the leftovers.

Compromise: Focus on the sides...............


Profile Information

Gender: Female
Hometown: London
Home country: US/UK/Sweden
Current location: Stockholm, Sweden
Member since: Sun Jul 1, 2018, 07:25 PM
Number of posts: 45,074

About Celerity

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