Jul 272014

I look forward to Senate investigations into the Scopes trial and bills requiring prayer in public schools — and hand guns for all! Let the lunatics rule the asylum. That would guarantee impeachment for Obama, which would likely raise his standing with everyone else and assure another Democratic president in 2016. Bring it on, fools.

Republicans narrowly favored to capture Senate in November – CBS News

A new CBS News/New York Times Battleground Tracker estimate finds the Republicans positioned to take the Senate this year, with a likely 51-49 seat edge if the November election were held right now. The margin of error on that current seat estimate, at plus or minus 2 seats, means Democrats still have a real possibility to keep the chamber and that we head into campaign season with control up for grabs — with a closely-divided Senate surely coming in 2015 in either case.

Republicans narrowly favored to capture Senate in November – CBS News

 Posted by at 1:11 pm on Sun 07/27/14
Jul 242014

The right’s anti-healthcare jubilee! Why they can’t quit the Obamacare obsession – Salon.com by Simon Maloy

Conservatives’ gloating over Halbig reveals why the right’s insular, fact-resistant world is so dangerous

The unseemly side to all this celebrating is the fact that these conservatives are, in effect, throwing a party over a judicial ruling that would strip millions of people of their health coverage. “The next time Republicans are wondering why so many people think their party is cruel and uncaring and will gladly crush the lives of ordinary people if it means gaining some momentary partisan advantage, they might think back to this case,” wrote Paul Waldman in the American Prospect.

Conservatives, obviously, wouldn’t see it that way, even though the policy ramifications are clear. In that way, Halbig has offered a stark reminder of just how vast the differences between the two sides in the Obamacare fight are. It’s not just a simple matter of policy disagreement – conservatives and Republicans have constructed a separate and impenetrable reality in which the Affordable Care Act is a catastrophic failure that has not provided a single measurable benefit.

The right’s anti-healthcare jubilee! Why they can’t quit the Obamacare obsession – Salon.com

 Posted by at 8:03 am on Thu 07/24/14
Jul 172014

Do you really want Republicans controlling the Senate, too? If not, donate time and money to decent candidates and VOTE against the Party of Nonsense.

On impeaching: Palin 1, Boehner 0 | Albuquerque Journal News

That’s right: By Boehner’s lights, Obama’s abuse of authority involves delaying a requirement – a delay, incidentally, intended to help businesses – of a law that Boehner’s House has voted more than 50 times to repeal. (Never mind that, as Ezra Klein of Vox has pointed out, President George W. Bush unilaterally waived Medicare Part D penalties for low-income and disabled seniors late to enroll – with nary a peep from Boehner.)

On impeaching: Palin 1, Boehner 0 | Albuquerque Journal News

 Posted by at 9:02 am on Thu 07/17/14
Jul 162014

My brother, Dan, and sister-in-law, Sharon, have lived in San Francisco for about 40 years. In May, Merri and I flew to visit them for the first time in ages. As befits the City, we walked a lot. In fact, we used many forms of transportation but didn’t once get in a car.

We saw many fantastic murals and great architecture.

very Hawaiianarchitecture

We toured the waterfront.

MR with Golden Gate Bridge in backgroundAlcatraz

We lunched in Golden Gate Park.

Sharon, Merri, brother Dan, and mjh
Sharon, Merri, Dan, and Mark

Dan & Sharon point to their house.
Dan & Sharon point to their house.

MR with giant California poppy mural along a seedy alley.
Mer with the giant poppy mural.

mjh not far from the Golden Fire Hydrant he never saw.
MJH on a hill in a park near Dan & Sharon’s apartment. [photo by Merri Rudd]

We had a great time. And I heard that although people say San Francisco occupies 49 square miles, it is actually 47. More photos.

 Posted by at 10:53 am on Wed 07/16/14
Jul 132014

I live in a dry land that once was under water, a seabed now 5000 feet above sea level. Sunrise is held at bay by a granite ridge 5000 feet higher, which at sunset glows as pink as coral. Looking west, the eye is drawn to the sliver of green flanking the Rio Grande, life’s blood trickling through a parched land that rises to five volcanoes close at hand, which in turn are dwarfed by a volcano 80 miles away. All under a sky of limitless blue.

This vista fills me with joy.

Driving into town from any direction, you can take in the largest city in the state with a glance. Stand under the cottonwoods along the river and you forget where you are. Here the land has not been subdued by man. We are surrounded by reminders that we are all recent arrivals and none will outlast the land itself.

The land appears still until you view it at 10,000 years per second, when it shakes and buckles, rises and falls, like a coffee cup on the hood of a truck at rough idle. The land appears flat until you cross it to find the surface cracked and broken by ravines scoured by wind and rain. The land seems silent until the wind howls like an injured animal lashing out in pain.

The land seems dry until a year’s worth of rain falls in a few days. We live for these days and relive them in conversations. We smell the rain before we hear it, we feel the temperature change, listen for the first drops. We sit on our porches, big grins on our faces with the look of wonder like children at a fair.

The Navajo speak of male and female rains, the brief, violent storms versus the slow nurturing drizzle over hours. The Navajo also advise each other to walk in beauty, to appreciate our surroundings and be part of that beauty.

This month, I complete my 30th year in New Mexico, a bit more than half my life. That line, this land, my life leave me speechless.


 Posted by at 7:13 am on Sun 07/13/14
Jul 082014

The tea party’s embrace of martyrdom – The Washington Post by Dana Milbank

Imperial Japan taught its soldiers that death was preferable to surrender. The tea party’s code is similar: Stand firm, regardless of the odds of success or the consequences of failure. I’ve argued before that the struggle between the Republican establishment and the tea party is no longer about ideology — establishment figures have mostly coopted tea party views — but about temperament.

It has become the amiable vs. the angry, the civil vs. the uncivil, a conservatism of the head vs. a conservatism of the spleen. The division now is between those who would govern and those who would sooner burn the whole place to the ground — and in this struggle, McDaniel carries a torch.

As the economy continues its slow recovery, the ranks of the angry are shrinking, but there remains a sizable and outspoken minority that listens to conservative talk radio and embraces martyrdom. It

The tea party’s embrace of martyrdom – The Washington Post

 Posted by at 4:06 pm on Tue 07/08/14