Bali volcano eruption strands tourists.
Who’s in charge at the CFPB?
Racist-in-chief strikes again.
Ending the ban on pulpit politics makes its way through Congress
Mazel tov Harry and Meghan.
First, thank you for your good thoughts and wishes. As CLWill noted via my texts, I made it through the storm with barely a scratch on the house and some judicious tree-trimming by Irma. I got power back yesterday (Wednesday) around noon and the house is cooling off and the moisture is being removed.
But what I went through is nothing compared to what many endured and suffered both here in Florida and through the Caribbean. I have friends in the Keys who lost not only their home but their livelihood. The last I heard from them is that they evacuated to South Carolina and will not be returning because they have nothing to return to. The strain and sorrow is permanent for them.
I can count my blessings and be grateful that all I lost were frozen foods and I can mutter about the inconvenience of no power for 78 hours and no internet or cable still. But at least I have a place to sleep and a place to wait for the service to be restored and familiar surroundings and friends to thank for providing me with a place to be during the storm.
If you are so inclined, please find a way to help out the people who really suffered during this time both here and abroad. Listings of resources such as reliable charities can be found everywhere on the internet.
I will try to resume blogging on a regular schedule once the little “Broadband” light on my router at home turns from flashing red to steady green. Until then, I’ll be on limited schedule.
I wish John McCain a swift and uneventful recovery.
At 90-years-old, a former U.S. senator has found love with a man — 20 years after the death of his wife.
Harris Wofford, a Democrat who represented Pennsylvania in the U.S. Senate from 1991-1995, wrote in a column for The New York Times that he is set to marry a man this Saturday.
Wofford retells the story of how he and his wife met, and how then-President Bill Clinton phoned him as his wife, Clare, died of cancer. They had been married for 48 years.
Wofford, who says he was convinced he would never find love again, met Matthew Charlton, his husband-to-be, while visiting Florida 15 years ago.
Fifty years separate the two in age with “far different professional interests,” but Wofford said the two clicked.
“We took trips around the country and later to Europe together, becoming great friends,” he wrote. “We both felt the immediate spark, and as time went on, we realized that our bond had grown into love. Other than with Clare, I had never felt love blossom this way before.”
He said he’s “lucky” to have found love again in a time when the U.S. Supreme Court has recognized “that matrimony is not based on anyone’s sexual nature, choices or dreams. It is based on love.
Wofford also served as a special assistant for civil rights to President John F. Kennedy, and an unofficial adviser to Martin Luther King Jr. Also, he helped found the Peace Corps.
Best wishes to the happy couple, and thanks for giving this comparatively young guy hope.
Best wishes to Kevin Drum as he faces a serious illness. He’s a great writer and one of the pioneers of blogging. I hope he has a speedy and uneventful recovery.
Three European nations offer limited support in fight against ISIS.
Fire at an F.A.A. facility near Chicago grounded planes across the Midwest on Friday.
Federal court won’t take up Wisconsin voter I.D. law.
Earthquake swarm rattles Mammoth Lakes area in California.
Police behavior in Ferguson gets attention from the D.O.J.
Chelsea Clinton has a girl, Charlotte.
The Tigers got hammered 11-4 by the Twins, dragging out the clinching.
I took this picture at Northport Point, Michigan, forty-one years ago with my then-new Yashica TL-E SLR and a roll of Tri-X Pan film that I had bummed off a friend. I was hurrying home in the late afternoon — it gets dark really early up there this time of year — and it was really cold, so I just pointed and clicked. I was surprised how well it turned out, and still am.
Anyway, other than my usual ALNM post later tonight, this is my last post for the year. I’m planning a very quiet night at home with the Engstrom family (the subject of my current novel-in-progress) and I’m going to avoid the outdoors because people have a nasty habit of shooting off fireworks and firearms to celebrate, and you never know where they – neither the ordnance or the people — will land. So I’ll say it now: Happy New Year, Friends. Stay safe and warm and I’ll see you tomorrow morning.
Greg Louganis got married last weekend.
Louganis, 53, married paralegal Johnny Chaillot, 52, Saturday evening at Geoffrey’s in Malibu. “It was amazing because I have so many people from all facets of my life here tonight and they are all here and celebrating it is all wonderful,” Louganis told PEOPLE immediately following the sunset ceremony. “I already feel different. The ceremony was so reflective and representative of who we are.” The recent Splash coach and Chaillot began dating in 2012 after finding each other on the online dating site Match.com and became engaged almost exactly a year later on April 8.
Best wishes to the happy couple.
Not only is it the anniversary of Sam’s passing, it’s also the anniversary of the first step on the moon in 1969, the birthday of my friend The Old Professor, and the celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of the first broadcast of Interlochen Public Radio.
Syria — Rebels and government forces fight at military base.
Arrest made in ricin case in Mississippi.
Owner of collapsed building in Bangladesh that killed hundreds is arrested.
FAA says they will be fully staffed by tonight.
Justice Breyer has shoulder surgery after bicycle accident.
The Tigers beat the Braves 7-4.
By luckyfran via the Maddow Blog:
So once again we are plunged into it. Another news flash, another banner of “BREAKING NEWS” across the TV screens, another series of jumpy videos from the scene, another ceaseless round of eyewitness reports, rumors, speculation, and instant deep analysis of the psyche of America: who would do such a thing at such a time and place?
You would think that by now we would be used to it, but we never are. We can anticipate the reactions on a general scale, but there is always something jarring about the realization that once again one or more among us has done something deliberately horrible to other people. There will be vapid attempts by good people to explain the why, but it’s never the real answer, and when we don’t know who, we reach for the simple one: it must be this other group that hates us, or it must have been a loner with a tormented soul who could never explain why and didn’t survive to give us an answer. We can never accept that it is someone among us, someone who stood behind us to buy a donut or passed on the street while we walked the dog, not ever noticing them because neither of us is particularly noticeable.
The realization can make us paranoid; we can’t trust each other any more, we can’t feel safe. So we dump our soda bottles at the airport, we wonder about the guy with the beard and the hat, we try to come up with some way to rationalize our fear and shake our heads and remember when it was okay to run down the airport concourse to meet a passenger or ride the bus and not feel queasy about the person muttering to himself as he reads a book written in a script we can’t read. But it’s only the weakest among us who have the strength to carry that hopelessness. Most of us have the will and the determination not to let that terror overwhelm us.
No one speaking on TV or writing on a blog yet knows why a spring afternoon on a street in Boston was turned from a sporting event to a war zone. We trust the people we’ve entrusted our safety to — the police and their agencies — to find the clues that will lead us to an answer, and while we wait we speculate and muse and listen to others, we should know that while all the answers may never be found, we’ll find enough of them to absorb the shock and go on.
As Harry Chapin sang, there are planes to catch and bills to pay. We are a resilient people, and while we hurt and grieve and our step may falter for a moment, we go on, safe in the knowledge that we are safe and cared for; that yesterday people ran to the carnage on Boylston Street, not away; that hundreds of people gave something of themselves — literally gave blood and treasure — to help others who yesterday morning they did not know existed. This is how we absorb the shock: by seeing that in the reflection of the flash of horror, there we are giving and helping and searching to save the ones who need us.
The Senate confirmed John Kerry to be Secretary of State.
President Obama pushes immigration reform in Las Vegas.
Things are still chaotic in Egypt.
Australia cleans up after floods.
Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood stepping down.
Miami New Times says clinic supplied A-Rod and others with drugs.
Mazel tov to Jim Nabors and his husband on their marriage.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is still in a New York hospital being treated for a blood clot in her head after suffering a concussion in December.
“It did not result in a stroke, or neurological damage,” Dr. Lisa Bardack of Mt. Kisco Medical Group in New York and Dr. Gigi El-Bayoumi of George Washington University said in a joint statement released Monday.
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton is expected to make a full recovery after spending a fourth day in a New York City hospital for a blood clot in her head that developed following a fall and concussion she suffered last month. NBC’s Anne Thompson reports.
“To help dissolve this clot, her medical team began treating the secretary with blood thinners. She will be released once the medication dose has been established.”
This is a standard and safe therapy for such a blood clot, according to a review published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2005. Dr. Jan Stam of the University of Amsterdam said the clots are rare – affecting 3 to 4 people out of a million every year. Some doctors fear that blood thinners for a clot near the brain could be dangerous, but it’s the best way to dissolve the clot. “More than 80 percent of all patients now have a good neurologic outcome,” Stam wrote.
Meanwhile, the vultures on the right are saying it’s either a conspiracy to keep her from testifying about Benghazi or that President Obama ordered a hit on her so she would never testify (I’m not making that up but I refuse to link to the site that’s saying that because my mom taught me better than that). They’re also saying that it proves she’s too old or too frail to run for president in 2016 when she’ll be the same age as Ronald Reagan was when he ran in 1980.
I also don’t remember anyone on the right bringing up the fact that when he was nominated to be vice president in 2000, Dick Cheney had a long history of heart attacks (going back to the 1970’s), or suggesting that he resign or leave the ticket in 2004 because of continued heart problems. That’s probably because he’s a man and men are stronger and can take the rigors of politics even if you have a heart problem… just walk it off. But a woman? Pshaw!
Technically the U.S. government went over the cliff at midnight, but at the last minute the White House and Republicans worked out a compromise deal on taxes and sequestration. The Senate whooped it through 89-8, and the House will vote on it later today, which means it could still blow up and we’ll be back where we started.
Hillary Clinton is still recovering in at hospital in New York from a blood clot near her brain. This development is not necessarily life-threatening, and doctors say she should make a full recovery. But it does make the right-wingers who said she was faking her illness to get out of testifying before Congress about the incident in Benghazi look like churlish asshats. But then again, they already were, so no news there. Two years from today I expect us to be chattering about her standing in the Iowa polls, a year out from the Iowa caucuses.
Marriage equality comes to Maryland today. It was one of three states that voted by public referendum to legalize the unions over the objections of such ironically-named hate groups like Focus on the Family, the National Organization for Marriage, and One Million Moms. They had claimed that judges and legislatures had no business overturning the will of the people and no state would allow same-sex marriage if the the people got to vote on it. Maryland and two other states, Maine and Washington, made that point moot, and now those groups are trying to figure out a way to overturn the elections. Best wishes to the happy couples.
The last two Cuban day workers at the Guantánamo Bay Naval Base have retired, but there’s no legal way for the U.S. to pay their hard-earned Defense Department pension without violating the embargo. It’s long past time the embargo itself was retired, and without a pension.
Today marks Marty’s thirteenth birthday. She’s been my friend Brian’s faithful companion since she was a pup, and she’s still going strong. Best wishes.
And today marks a milestone for my 1988 Pontiac 6000 LE Safari station wagon, which I have also had since it was a pup. It is now officially 25 years old, thus making it an antique car.
That’s what it looked like when it was twenty years old. I’ll have more pictures of it later this week when it comes back from the body shop where it’s getting some nips and tucks done to make it ready for its first national AACA show in February.
Happy new year, everyone, and may this one be better than the last one.