Saturday, July 15, 2017

Saturday Evening Post for July15th, 2017: The Triple Peak Edition of Trump, Oligarchy, and Summer

**This entry was posted July 15th, 2017.**

Virgin America flight 1874 ascending over the Dallas area, 5:57PM July 11, 2017.

The jet pictures -- on the tarmac, taxiing, and takeoff from Dallas Love Field (DAL) and over Dallas -- were taken on Tuesday as I was returning from Dallas to D.C. Times are CDT.


Saturday night.

I'm in the office at L'Enfant Plaza and I've actually been here all day -- well, since 4PM, to be exact -- working on a "textification" task related to an annual merit review issued by one of the DOE technology program offices. In addition to editing, it requires looking up abbreviations and cross/fact checking to make sure my edits are introducing errors.

Busy wee hours weekend night intersection of 14th and U Streets NW, Washington, D.C., 2:17AM July 15, 2017.

I was walking home from Trade and Stoney's. The past two nights -- and again tonight despite it being Saturday -- I have stayed very late at the office in order to finish aforementioned work project.


I've been working on this heavily since Wednesday (following my Dallas workshop trip that was in support of another technology office).

I finally finished the 149-page document but I still have to complete a 95-page one. I'm not going to be able to finish it by Monday -- nor could I even if I gave up my Sunday, which I am not going to do -- but if I can get at least half of it done, that should be adequate.

It's not an urgent client deliverable but rather an internal interim deadline for a much larger, sprawling project due later this summer.

As a result of this, I have not followed my typical gym/laundry routine of a Saturday night.

Young people swarming, 14th and U Street NW, Washington, D.C., 2:18AM July 15, 2017.

I can walk home either up 14th or 16th Streets NW to U Street NW.


So I really would like to post some political commentary -- since between the raging Trumpster fires from Camp Runamuck, a.k.a., the Trump White House, involving historically unprecedented levels of collusion with a hostile foreign power (Putin's Russia) and corruption on a level not seen since the post-Civil War-to-Gilded Age level, as well as that Rosemary's Baby of a "healthcare bill" that Mitch McConnell (R - Amoral) is desperate to "birth" in the Senate while the birthin' is good (i.e., during this Trumpocalypse epoch in which the GOP's Long Con finally reaches its oligarchical apotheosis), there is much to relate.

However, I'm limited in my time, especially in order to get this entry posted by midnight and get out of hear.

Inside the Dallas Love Field terminal, Dallas, Texas, 5:25PM July 11, 2017.


I will link to some items, though:

This is in keeping with Josh Marshall's maxim that "moderate" GOP Senators and Congress Members ALWAYS cave to the hard right, no matter what they say ahead of time. And in this case -- OF COURSE -- it'll be 50-50 with Pence breaking the tie.

Taxiing on the tarmac at Dallas Love Field, Dallas Texas, 5:50PM July 11, 2017.

The airport is close enough to downtown Dallas to see the skyline prominently.


Remember that this "Better Care Reconciliation Act" is itself nothing more than a stalking horse for sky-trillion dollar tax giveaways to the 0.1% overclass (the "makers" in GOP cultology) while obliterating the working class -- including all those white working class idiots who can't line up fast enough to be Trump marks.

Among the men, these are the kind of people who would come home and fine Trump in bed with their wife or daughter and still find a way to blame Obama and Hillary and the "Democrat Party."

Taxiing on the tarmac at Dallas Love Field, Dallas Texas, 5:52PM July 11, 2017.

The jet had a bit of nightclub feel to it with the purple LED lights and how dark it was when I boarded (since all the shades were down). Oh, and the flight information safety video -- it's basically a dance club song.


As Charlie Pierce wrote: Next, we're going to hear that, during a break, the Bolshoi performed on the coffee table.

Jetting ready for takeoff, Dallas Love Field, Dallas, Texas, 5:52PM July 11, 2017.


Speaking of the great Charlie Pierce, I'd also like to note his take on it from his piece: Trump's Favorite Pastime: Not Paying for Stuff.

Opening sentence:

The Washington Post White House crew -- especially Phil Rucker and Ashley Parker -- are doing a great job parsing through the chaos that's going on inside the gates at 1600 Pennsylvania, which apparently has combined the essential loyalty of the Borgia popes with the fundamental organization of a Three Stooges pie fight.


The moment of takeoff from Dallas Love Field, Dallas, Texas, 5:54PM July 11, 2017.

Unbeknownst to me ahead of time, I been on the right side of the jet, I would have seen downtown Dallas, but I chose the left side in case we followed the downriver Potomac approach into DCA (which we did).


In this case, it's because Trump is trying to con the RNC into paying for his Russia scandal legal troubles. Of course, he'll get away with it -- the GOP is too eager to pass it's "agenda" of death and no rich people's taxes.

(Yes, this gave me the idea of the reference to the famous "The Long Con" article indirectly referenced above.)


During the eight-year jihad against the Affordable Care Act, of course, the G.O.P. pretended otherwise: denouncing Obamacare for failing to cover everyone, attacking the high out-of-pocket expenses associated with many of its policies, and so on. But conservative ideology always denied the proposition that people are entitled to health care; the Republican elite considered and still considers people on Medicaid, in particular, "takers" who are effectively stealing from the deserving rich.

Initial ascent over Dallas, Texas from Love Field, 5:54PM July 11, 2017.



And the conservative view has always been that Americans have health insurance that is too good, that they should pay more in deductibles and co-pays, giving them "skin in the game," and thus an incentive to control costs.

So what we're seeing here is supposed to be the last act in a long con, the moment when the fraudsters cash in, and their victims discover how completely they’ve been fooled. The only question is whether they'll really get away with it. We’ll find out very soon.

View ascending over Dallas, Texas, 5:57PM July 11, 2017.

The jet was filled with screaming 2-year olds and their enabling American parents. I had a good traveling companion seated next to me that I met and also a pair of headsets, which I used to listen to classical music while descending over Northern Virginia at night and on the downriver approach into DCA.


Finally, I'd like to note this piece by David Brooks: Moral Vacuum in the House of Trump.

It gives a nice historical context / overview of how Donald Trump and his children's amorality came to be.


It takes generations to hammer ethical considerations out of a person’s mind and to replace them entirely with the ruthless logic of winning and losing; to take the normal human yearning to be good and replace it with a single-minded desire for material conquest; to take the normal human instinct for kindness and replace it with a law-of-the-jungle mentality.

Threatening skies ahead of thunderstorm over L'Enfant Promenade, SW Washington, D.C., 4:36PM July 14, 2017.


It took a few generations of the House of Trump, in other words, to produce Donald Jr.

Successful business people, like successful politicians, are very ambitious, but they generally have some complementary moral code that checks their greed and channels their drive. The House of Trump has sprayed an insecticide on any possible complementary code, and so they are continually trampling basic decency. Their scandals may not build to anything impeachable, but the scandals will never end.


Thunderstorm approaching as seen from the L'Enfant Promenade overpass of I-395 looking west, SW Washington, D.C., 4:38PM July 11, 2017.


Weather Update: Peak Summer Arrives 

The weather today was seasonably hot for mid-July with highs but significantly less humid than in recent days following a stormy frontal passage yesterday. Specifically, the highs were as follows: KDCA 90F, KBWI 88F, KIAD 87F, and 90F KDMH.

This is climatologically the warmest part of the summer right now with average highs at KDCA of 89F and 88F at KBWI and KIAD.

(KDMH doesn't have a full thirty-year "normal" data set yet, but it's preliminary 89F.)

Humidity was a lot less with dew points between 60F and 65F compared to the 72F to as high as 79F dew points yesterday. The thunderstorms yesterday dropped the following amounts of rainfall:

KDCA: 0.73"
KIAD: 0.73" (Yes, they were identical amounts.)
KBWI: 0.15"
KDMH: 0.03"

The precipitation tallies and departures (to normals) through today are as follows:

Month: 3.00" +1.14" (1.86")
Year: 18.92" -2.68" (21.60")

Month: 2.64" +0.73" (1.91")
Year: 21.17" -1.23" (22.40")

Month: 3.89" +2.11 (1.78")
Year: 24.26" +1.68" (22.58")

Month: 1.49" -0.73" (2.22")
Year: 17.14" -4.44" (21.58")


Right now, I'm heading out and over to Old Ebbitt Grill for a late dinner and then probably go to Trade.

I would go to Nellie's, but the place has basically turned into a straight hip hop bar.

A bald cypress in the 1400 block of V Street NW, Washington, D.C., 3:17PM July 15, 2017.

These trees are deciduous coniferous.


For tomorrow, I might go to the gym but more likely I'll just wait until Monday and get back on schedule then. I've been a bit less consistent this summer and year in general in keeping up my gym schedule, but I have increased the amount of weightlifting while paring back on the jogging. The swimming is about the same.

In one sense -- at age 47 -- it doesn't matter since I'm already well past any youthful peak and even in my peak, never had a body that was anything except small/short with a tendency to a big ass -- but otherwise nebbishish. I better stop or BIG Y'EYEMAH might check in all eager at the prospect of someone else existing at the Venn Diagram intersection of poverty, obesity, and passivity (POP).

In another sense, though, a consistent gym schedule and healthy diet (except for alcohol) should ensure that I can age a hell of a lot better than all those straight, married male friends I once had who are now buccal pumping-frogs on suburban lily pads who take orders from their wives on when they can go to the bathroom.

Of course, I am also perennially alone and when I finally die -- after my parents -- I'll leave absolutely no trace or memory of my existence behind.

Wait, where was I? Oh, yes, that's all for now. Jukebox Saturday Night entry to follow momentarily (as it is already composed and ready to be posted). My next planned entry will be late Monday, or rather, after midnight Tuesday.


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