Working on Stuff

So, I am taking a break from writing about political stuff this week, in this last stretch before the elections. For one reason – I have said what I have to generally say about it all, several times over, and for year after year; just not interested in finding a way of saying it all again. For another, there are bloggers and commenters who are saying it all much better than I could – about the possible apotheosis of Her Inevitableness, the Dowager Queen of Chappaqua, the possible repercussions of said apotheosis, and the fighting chances of The Donald. Frankly, it impresses me that he pisses off a whole lot of individuals who have a long, long, long history of insulting and denigrating me, as a military veteran, a proud member of the aspiring middle class, and Tea Party participant. No, he isn’t the answer to every political maiden’s ardent prayer; he’s a loud, proud, out and out oft-married Noo Yawk vulgarian, which most intelligent political mavens realized early in the game – but as Abraham Lincoln was moved to say in defense of Ulysses S. Grant, early on in the first civil war, “I can’t spare this man; he fights.”

So – The Donald fights, which is quite refreshing for a quasi-conservative, and a nice change for the manner in which so-called representatives of the conservative end of the National Uniparty usually react. * They curl up and whimper apologetically when accused of some offense – whatever is the prime offense of the moment according to the current crop of screeching garbage babies – and then they move on as if nothing had ever happened. The die is cast, in any case: the election itself is in less than four weeks. Whatever deals are in the works have been cut, the planned media bombshells have already been primed and aimed, the required ballot-boxes have already been stuffed in the strategic districts, either actually, or by electronic means; the set speeches written and the responding authoritative editorials composed and set on time-delay release. All that us ordinary citizens can do is to buckle in for the bumpy ride, and vote as our conscience dictates.

Not much that I can do at this point to change any of that – so I am prepping for market events this month, next month and the first half of December. I am a hard-working scribbler of historical fiction and light contemporary comic romps – and writing the books is just half the job. The other half is getting them out in front of likely readers, and in this last quarter of 2016, this is where most of my direct sales are made, and this is why I try to have a new book ready for release in time for those markets. My daughter, with her origami art, has suggested and has the purse sufficient to enable us to explore other market venues which have reasonable table fees for participation. San Marcos – for two markets in conjunction with their Mermaid Festival worked out very well for her, so we are off to exploring other craft and local markets in Blanco, Johnson City, and back to Giddings, for a series of craft and book events which will likely take up a Saturday, or even a whole weekend; this in addition to the events which we have done in previous years; Bulverde, New Braunfels, Goliad and Boerne. It’s frankly an exhausting schedule from this next weekend until the week before Christmas, so I am trying to get as much as possible done in advance; the business cards, the book flyers, the freebie bookmarks and postcards … all printed up and assembled at home. Because the actual process of doing the market is also exhausting. Load the Montero, drive to venue, unload the Montero, set up the pavilion and tables, work the passing crowd of shoppers for six or eight hours, break down the market set-up and drive home … the easy market events are those where we only have to bring the merchandise, or the tables and table-dressings, and for an indoors venue. This can be rewarding … but also exhausting. This is the price of getting your books and craft items out there – and now is the beginning of the peak season.

*As for the current Trump ruckus du jour … Trash-talking with another guy about women? Oh, please. Both the Daughter Unit and I overheard cruder stuff from the male servicemen who were our co-workers during our time in service, and in the Daughter Unit’s case – she sometimes joined in. (Me – I’m a f**king lady – I wear a hat and gloves – and don’t you forget it!) Dems getting the vapors over this is epically hypocritical, especially after overlooking Ted Kennedy’s truly crude and abusive behavior (not just words, but actual and disgusting behavior over a period of decades as a senator) and Bill Clinton’s serial abuse of women – abuse which was enabled by the current Democrat Party candidate for the presidency – and excused by the members of that same party when it all came to national attention in the last year of his presidency. Get back to me when being a total male pig is condemned equally across the board. And for something more substantial than just crude talk.

45 thoughts on “Working on Stuff”

  1. I was wondering where Trump’s campaign manager Kellyanne Conway was. She had been out of sight for almost 48 hours after the news broke. Whatever she was doing she’s now come out with both barrels blazing judging by Trump’s pre-debate press conference.

  2. I like your Grant parallel. It works. And your attitude is refreshing. The more I think of this the more irritated I am – it really is how the game is played. It’s not unlike the theoretical racism of “All lives matter.” It was vulgar to talk about Clinton’s vulgar sex acts but not vulgar to be him; that was only about sex. This is all about sex talk and it is vulgar to be Trump, not to bring it up.

  3. Unbelievable. It turns out the debate was the best thing to happen after his latest debacle. Trump was better this time around for sure but also lucky other issues were required to come up.

    This totally backfired on Hillary. Blew up in her face. They should’ve released it right after the first debate. Now it’s forgotten in the flood of issues.

    Trump is dirty, egotistical bastard, but I agree losing the Supreme Court for a generation and having a president sell us all out to the highest bidder is worse.

    What a lucky bastard, though.

  4. Well said. Trump is the first Pres Rep candidate I have heard in a generation who takes the fight right back at them.

    Reagan did too, but he was a lot nicer and polite about it. He had velvet gloves; Trump uses brass knuckles.

  5. There are other factors of the “ruckus du jour”. In the 48 hours since the video came out, many of the GOPe outed themselves fatally as Hillary supporters. There is no way for them to recover from their public denunciation and attacks on the Republican candidate. They cannot credibly re-endorse Trump after publicly unendorsing him. So their only choice is to join with the Democrats.

    In the cases of Paul Ryan and John McCain especially, it would make sense for any Trump supporter to vote for their Democrat opponents. At least after said supporter has removed the knife from their own backs. Ryan and McCain declared open war on Trump and will fight a President Trump, harder and with more effect, than a freshman Democrat in the same seat. And both have proved over their careers that neither will stand up against the Democrats on anything, if Hillary is elected.

    Here in Colorado, the same thing can be said for both Congressman Mike Coffman and the Republican Senate candidate Darryl Glenn. Glenn had a chance to beat incumbent Democrat Michael Bennet [within margin of error in the polls, and Bennet polling at less than 50%]. But when he called for Trump to resign, he stepped on his own private parts. For the sake of clarity, I used to support Glenn, have done campaign work for him, and am now finished. Sometimes it is necessary to clear the enemy out of your own ranks before dealing with them in their ranks.

  6. I’m not a big fan of John McCain but to say that he would be worse than a Democratic challenger is at least to me going a bit far. He did try to stop Obamacare and has voted for hopefully originalist Supreme Court judges. Vote for his primary opponent if you want but I see Nothing to gain by trying to vote him out of office and elevate a Democrat. Like them or dislike them there are benefits to having a majority caucus

  7. >This totally backfired on Hillary. Blew up in her face. They should’ve released it right after the first debate. Now it’s forgotten in the flood of issues.

    Rumor is that it wasn’t team Hillary that released it. It came from the Bush/GOPe faction.

  8. In the 48 hours since the video came out, many of the GOPe outed themselves fatally as Hillary supporters. There is no way for them to recover from their public denunciation and attacks on the Republican candidate.

    I agree. It was amazing to see the pearl clutching and fainting couch behavior. I would not advise voting for Democrats in retaliation but the curtain has been pulled back. The man behind the curtain is now in full view.

  9. I’m pretty sure that the establishment national GOP has pretty well sunk themselves – not only did they throw Sarah Palin to the wolves, and fail to support up and coming Tea Party-sympathetic newbies … now they have showed themselves to be more dedicated to remaining the junior members of the National Uniparty coalition. As long as they get their snouts in the trough and get thrown an occasional treat… Lincoln, Eisenhower and Reagan are probably rolling in their graves like Black and Decker drills…

  10. I don’t know that any particular person “leaked” the Friday tape, it seems clear that lots of people knew that this tape (and probably tons of similar stuff) was going to drop. However, it’s quite clear that the GOPe used it to launch a coordinated coup attempt, probably thinking that after the VP debate they could maybe even bring Pence on board, that has failed miserably. Sorry, losers, you come at the king, you best not miss.

  11. Oh my. I am in southern NH. I was off today to have my car inspected. I ran into a basket of Deplorables, some of whom I would never guessed were Deplorables.

  12. It would be nice to think a new party could be built on the grave of the Republicans and find someone like Lincoln to jumpstart it. A president with his character might arise from the ashes of the old (certainly the Republicans have plenty of young talent). But there is, of course, a downside – I’m not too crazy about a Civil War to launch it.

  13. ” I’m not too crazy about a Civil War to launch it.”

    You may not be interested in Civil War but Civil War is interested in you. As usual, Richard Fernandez has a good understanding.

    It is one of several scenes of an entire drama, almost an parallel universe which exists outside the 2016 spectacle which has captured the American public’s imagination. Events epochal to those whom they directly concern and important by any objective standard are foreshortened by false perspective into tiny insignificant occurrences happening long ago and far away.

    The striking thing is how this administration is bequeathing a comprehensive catastrophe to the next president almost without anyone, least of all the semi-retired chief executive, paying more than cursory attention.

    The world, both economic and political, is collapsing while no one pays attention.

    They should not have been surprised. Over the last decade presidential hopefuls have come from the ranks of thinkers without much experience in governance or the wider world. They knew all the answers — in theory — but none in practice. Individuals who spent all their adult lives learning how to raise money, craft talking points, perfect stances before the camera, fund opposition research, and recruit surrogates found that special skills did not travel so well in the wider world.

    The election of 2016, by coming down to an actual choice between two candidates who no one particularly seems to want, has emphasized the unnatural limits from which political leadership is drawn.

    The “elites” do not seem to be able to actually run anything. Nothing works as advertised. The technology billionaires create ephemera like Facebook and Twitter.

    I was in Boot Barn yesterday in Tucson. I looked at western belts. They were all “Made in China.”

  14. Ginny: I would also like to see a new party. Actually, I would like to see two new parties. In the first half of our country’s history, parties rose and fell every generation or so and were speaking to the issues that were important at the time. Our parties have been frozen since 1860, and we were due for one or another party to collapse and a new one arise at about the turn of the 19th to the 20th centuries. Our politics have become the UniParty -v- the Country Party a’la Codavilla’s premise. That will not end well.

    And when there is no real electoral political opposition possible, we will get that civil war whether we want it or not. It is not something to be desired by any means. While I am old and probably do not have long to live; I have children, nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews, and the prospect of grandchildren of my own soon. I would wish to avoid it, for their sake. But with both “parties” being wings of one UniParty, and both dedicated to keeping the plebians subservient and slaves, something will have to give.

    This election, if it does come off [not a guarantee] will probably be the last one because if Trump wins both “parties” will concentrate on blocking everything and destroying him. If Hillary wins, they will not need elections ever again.

    They squashed the TEA Party, with insults, contempt, and abuse of the laws when they won by playing by the rules.

    They hate and fear Trump, and have made it clear that even though he is playing by the rules and the law, that there is no rule of law.

    Who or whatever comes after Trump is going to match their contempt for rules and the law, and mere insults will not stop them. And they are not going to like what happens, at least as long as they survive.

    Bill Brandt: For the last decade at least, the Institutional Republicans have been open allies of the Democrats and at war with their own voters. McCain chief among them, and Ryan has done nothing but enable Obama at all levels. I suspect that I believe that we have a shorter time span before it all goes to hell than you do. Normalcy bias. Thus, I believe in more drastic electoral measures while that is still a possible option. The GOPe has learned that there are no consequences to betraying their voters and collaborating with the Democrats and every other enemy of our country. If we cannot establish consequences electorally, it will be done eventually by other means.

    This is the last chance to avoid other means. YMMV

  15. “If we cannot establish consequences electorally, it will be done eventually by other means.”

    I think it is too late for a soft landing. That was Romney in 2012. One small item today:

    “Late last night, laura graham called me as she couldn’t reach my brother or her shrink,” Band wrote in a Dec. 2011 email chain titled “Draft Infrastructure Model”:

    She was on staten island in her car parked a few feet from the waters edge with her foot on the gas pedal and the car in park. She called me to tell me the stress of all of this office crap with wjc and cvc as well as that of her family had driven her to the edge and she couldn’t take it anymore.
    WJC and CVC refers to William Jefferson Clinton and Chelsea Victoria Clinton.

    That was the Clinton Foundation COO about to commit suicide.

    It’s time for Fred Thompson.

  16. There is in fact a Civil War already starting. Trump is the result of millions of people frustrated with what the GOPe has done to betray them. Bernie Sanders was the result of the left feeling betrayed by their establishment. I guess the Debbie Wasserman emails remove any speculation about that.

    Let’s hope that election is the only Civil War that will ensue because who wants massive bloodshed?

    People who actually wish for something like that don’t even know what their wishing for.

  17. I believe that we have been in a cold civil war for a couple of years now … I pray and hope that it will never go hot. Alas, events, events, dear people… The GOPe lost me and I suspect a whole bunch of other people over the last four years; first by declining to do their damned job and act with %110 energy and enthusiasm in opposing the manifestly stupid and counterproductive policies of the Obama administration. They put up a mere token defense, and then went away, sniveling. This, after the GOPe party insiders tossed Sarah Palin to the wolves in order to deflect blame for McCain’s defeat. And then they declined to support local Tea Party-sympathetic and locally-organised candidates, and enterprises such as “True The Vote”. Is there anyone in the national GOP with a spine?

    How close are we to saying to the GOPe, as Oliver Cromwell said to the Rump Parliament, “You have sat too long for any good you have been doing lately… Depart, I say; and let us have done with you. In the name of God, go!”

  18. I’m reading an interesting book titled “Flames in the Field” a book about the SOE in World War II. I have read other books about it but this one has an interesting insight that applies to the election today.

    Page 43: Early British agents were seduced by “carte (Girard’s code name) and his handful of associates because they seemed “people like us.”

    The early agents, who were quickly betrayed and captured, tended to be intellectuals and artists. The French who betrayed them were quite similar. And unreliable.

    They felt no such affinity for those like the trade unionists who would later prove to be far more dependable allies but who were looked on with some suspicion in the early days as hardly suitable for the enterprise.

    Does that sound familiar in the world of Donald Trump? Paul Ryan anyone ?

    I’m just getting going in the book but thought that worth a comment.

  19. The GOPe and the Democrats think Trump is “clubbable” – like a baby seal. Not that he has any resemblance to a baby seal, but they’d certainly like to treat him as one.

  20. One thing Trump is not is a baby seal.

    His game face might be a bit excessive but he stands up well.

    Mitt Romney was “Mormon Nice” but I don’t know what Ryan’s reason is.

  21. Trump’s poll numbers plummeted last week in most polls even before P-gate.

    He was fighting for his life in that debate, and he seems to have stopped the bleeding, at least temporarily. We’ll get a better picture this weekend, but here’s what we know now. We can talk about his base, the Forgotten Man, the Sleeping Scotch-Irish Giant, etc., but Trump’s best hope has always been and still is the ‘Shy Tory’ vote in swing states. If they truly exist (a big if), they’re going to be regular people with regular lives who fear for their livelihoods if their real opinions are revealed. He needs to find them and hammer home the point that Hillary will destroy them if elected. It seems self-evident because that’s why they’re supposedly lying to pollsters in the first place.

  22. I don’t think anyone knows how this is going to turn out. I see evidence of a Hillary Astroturf program to flood social media.

    There will be another damaging Trump tape, probably with the “n word.” I hope his campaign is as ready for this as they were for the assault about groping. I thought that went well in spite of a media frenzy. The “press conference” trapped the media into covering the Clinton victims just as a previous presser got them to show up because they were anticipating something else.

    The video showing Michelle saying Hillary is unfit, is one good ad.

    The black girl interrupting a pro-Hillary ad saying she can’t tell those lies is another good one.

    Here is something that might be useful if a Trump racial comment surfaces.

    The main reason behind successful immigration should be painfully obvious to even the most dimwitted of observers: Some groups of people are almost always highly successful given only half a chance (Jews*, Hindus/Sikhs and Chinese people, for example), while others (Muslims, blacks** and Roma***, for instance) fare badly almost irrespective of circumstances. The biggest group of humanity can be found somewhere between those two extremes – the perennial overachievers and the professional never-do-wells.

    That last may or may not be a Hillary e-mail.

  23. Crusty economic historian par excellence Pseudoerasmus supposedly lives up in Northern Sakha. Sounds tempting (not), but it would be just my luck to have some meteor drop out of the sky once I got dog-sledded out to my tundra/swamp.

  24. “I kid … but it’s kinda tempting.”

    A bit cold and Tucson is more tempting for me. We were there last weekend with our daughter looking at houses.

    One we looked at.

    California has gotten just too crazy for me after 60 years. We looked at about ten houses with three (not that one) at the top of our list.

    This one, for example, would be millions in California.

    We are more interested in one that is being remodeled as we speak but which has a lot of potential. I’m waiting to see how it appraises.

    I have a list of requirements.

  25. Mike K — those links require a Zillow account.

    FWIW, you might check out Alabama. It’s not nearly as backward as most folks make it out to be. The Huntsville area is especially hi-tech due to the university up there and the rocket center.

    I have a 4 bedroom, 1800-square-foot house with attached garage (smallish, but there’s just me and my wife) just north of Montgomery. It cost less than $140K in 2000 and is all paid off. I just paid my taxes on it: all $485 dollars. C’mon over!

  26. Too far from my kids. I didn’t know about the Zillow account. I never registered for anything.

    I can drive from Tucson to Orange county in 7 hours. In fact we will drive next time we go. Much cheaper.

    Tucson is a bargain even compared to Phoenix, which I don’t like.

    Gas is a dollar a gallon cheaper than CA. Wine costs more but that is the only thing I can name that costs more.

    I did look into the Mobile area about ten years ago, The east shore of Mobile Bay,

  27. Completely off topic – I like the second one: it has more character and individuality – for the price over the first one, it had better!
    I couldn’t help noticing the bars on the windows of the first house, also. Around here, that spells … a not entirely secure neighborhood, although it might also just be ornamental. That yard might be easier to access for someone with mobility issues, though.

  28. To the point about frequent destruction and creation of political parties in the first third of our national history. I’m thinking those parties were far less captive of special interests than our current ones have become. It wasn’t that there weren’t special interests. It was because there was a much smaller government footprint so the possibility of economic rents were much less. As the progressive movement widened the scope and size of governments at all levels based on populous appeals, the special interests found it cost effective to fund and control this apparatus through political action for competitive purposes. Then the fun began.

    I can visualize a party being reinvented today, with alternate funding sources, but not one arising spontaneously. The start up complications and popular identification issues seem to me too great.

    The closest we came to reinventing was the tea party movement which demonstrated all the challenges. Even if the GOPe is significantly weakened, their special interest funding will still be large, the MSM will be just as hostile and the progressives will further consolidate in the Democrat Party.

    The largest problem the tea party had was no unifying leader to provide organization, vision and a plan. With those, perhaps the infighting, lack of funding and tentative affiliation could be better handled. Perhaps we can do better next time, knowing what happened last time.

    I suggest we call it the Deplorables Movement. That should appeal to all the younger potential voters because it sounds like it could be a super hero thing and we beat the media to the punch on branding. Of course, The Donald would be the perfect front man, especially if lighting strikes and he is elected.

    On the other hand, maybe I need more ammo and a Valium.


  29. It was because there was a much smaller government footprint so the possibility of economic rents were much less.

    That is the story, I believe. Plus, Congress was the crooked branch in the days when Mark Twain said, “No man’s life, liberty or property is safe while Congress is in session.”

    I don’t think we had dishonest presidents then, either. Grant and Harding had scandals but neither benefited. The real problems of the president began with Wilson and the Progressives.

    Jackson was probably wrong about the National Bank.

    I’m reading Grant’s Memoirs again. I first read it in college.

    I don’t know how this will end. Trump seems likely to lose now. He is fighting both parties and is probably correct when he says the sex tape came from Republicans, probably Ryan.

    CTH certainly thinks so.

    Pence hushed up a supporter who threatened revolution if Hillary wins. I think a lot of us are concerned about this. I don’t know if she is practical enough to cool the rhetoric if she wins. Then she would face a revolt on the angry left.

    I expect a lot of us are planning to hunker down. The only thing that would really threaten me is hyperinflation.

    By the way, there is a third house we looked at that is probably my favorite. There are no photos of it yet except a few I took. It has not been appraised or priced yet,

  30. Mike, an old friend once told me, when shopping for property, to “view it during it’s worst season….”

    Hillary, and Trump’s, problem is the same- even if elected, half the country ,more or less, will consider them illegitimate and refuse to obey whatever edicts they issue. The “forest of law has been cut down”.

  31. I don’t believe the tape came from the GOP. It sounds like the tape originated out of some backstage drama going on with Bush and the Today Show. Once NBC figured out what they had on their hands, they waited for the optimal time to release it, which they thought was before the second debate, but as I stated earlier that turned out to be the worst time to do it. Billy got fired over this incident, but that was a bonus for NBC because everyone on the Today Show hated him. Check out the video where he tried to defend Ryan Lochte during the Olympics and got into a fight with Al Roker.

  32. Like I said above, it’s clear that the GOPe at least knew the tape was coming and tried to use it to oust Trump. Massive fail, as the kids say.

  33. We went to Tucson last weekend to hit some of the summer heat. I have spent a lot of time there over the past 20 years and my youngest daughter went to U of A.

    I almost moved there in 2010 but got talked out of it by my daughter-in-law who said I would be too far from everyone. I was alone then and she might have been right.

    Now, my wife and I are back together for the past three years (after 25 apart) and she did not know Tucson. We decided this climate is better as she has emphysema. We looked at Seattle and Oregon, where she has a son living. She has decided Tucson is best.

    Our daughter who is 36 was reluctant so she went with us last weekend and likes it. She lives in LA and will stay there but liked the houses and I told her she will inherit the house some day.

    We will go back in a couple of weeks. It is a big deal to move away from the state where I have lived for 60 years.

    Part of it is hunkering down. Moderate weather. Not as hot as Phoenix and much less crime and scary sections. Interesting residential patterns. Tucson does not have a street grid like most cities. Many areas are isolated with dead end cul-de-sacs common. Many lots are an acre or more.

    Nice culture with the University. Theater and opera are there plus lots of shooting ranges. My kind of place,

    We’ll go back in a couple of weeks. Plenty of nice houses for sale. They are having a bit of a real estate recession so it is a good time to buy. California is very toppy right now. Both of us sold houses and have no issues there. Many houses for sale here now as I think many are deciding to cash out. Prices are astronomical.

  34. Mike K, it seems to me that in a hot desert climate of Tuscon, underground houses would be the way to go, to get a cooler building. Have you seen any underground houses, or at least houses with basements in Tuscaon?

  35. I have fun telling acquaintances that I am a one issue voter. I decline to tell anyone for whom I am voting. I tell them I am pro robust economic growth that reaches the regular every day people in the Middle. I have yet to run into someone who concludes that I am voting for Clinton. The usual response is anti-Trump sputtering. No one tries to make the case to me that Hillary will be good for the working people, or even the economy. Why do you suppose that is?

  36. “Have you seen any underground houses, or at least houses with basements in Tuscaon?”

    No, I haven’t. Tucson seems to me to be a milder climate than Phoenix. It is 1500 feet elevation with mountains all around. Even the older houses have no basement and we are not interested in more than one story. There is a very nice one with a great view and a pretty good price but it is two stories and we did not look.

    I do want a pool, though. In that climate, it is a really nice feature.

    The really hot season is about three months. Orange County has been almost as hot this year.

    Tucson gets cold in the winter. I’ve seen it down to 14 degrees a few nights. Citrus has to be protected. I’ve seen it snow a few times.

  37. My wife walked in a half hour ago with a door hanger from a local real estate agent.

    A house a block from us just sold for $740,000. It is 3 bedroom, 2 bath and about 1800 square feet. No pool.

    Tucson here we come !

  38. Selling wise, likely the sooner the better- There are warning signs all over-housing priced at bubble top, Deutsch bank shaky,art market dropping, etc.

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