Current events

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Current events

Ene 16, 2017, 11:26am

Do we not have a current events thread? I think it's time for one, in that case.

On the lighter side, comparatively speaking, to start us out—here's what we're leaving behind: Obama’s Secret to Surviving the White House Years: Books
“At a time when events move so quickly and so much information is transmitted,” he said, reading gave him the ability to occasionally “slow down and get perspective” and “the ability to get in somebody else’s shoes.” These two things, he added, “have been invaluable to me. Whether they’ve made me a better president I can’t say. But what I can say is that they have allowed me to sort of maintain my balance during the course of eight years, because this is a place that comes at you hard and fast and doesn’t let up.”

And I love this—I wish more parents did this:
He recently gave his daughter Malia a Kindle filled with books he wanted to share with her (including “One Hundred Years of Solitude,” “The Golden Notebook” and “The Woman Warrior”).

Ene 16, 2017, 12:27pm

It's just pathetic how grateful I was to have a president who understood the value of a reading life.

I think Trump's secret to surviving the White House will be his Twitter account.

Ene 16, 2017, 12:47pm

Actually, I'm hoping that will contribute to his undoing.

Ene 16, 2017, 12:55pm

Well I didn't say it was the secret to the rest of us suriving him in the White House! :-)

Ene 16, 2017, 8:22pm

That article, more than anything else, made me really grieve today.

Ene 18, 2017, 8:32am

I don't think i can handle any more current events, actually

Editado: Ene 19, 2017, 1:11pm

Oh, man that last press conference. I can't even...

I mean, seriously. I got so emotional after that.

I'd love to be able to join that Women's March. I will certainly be there in spirit.

Ya' know something weird? I've never seen "All the President's Men." Not all the way through. I've started it a bunch of times, caught it midway, etc., but I've never seen it from start to finish. I plan on watching that during the inauguration, because like Rep. Lewis, I am boycotting it.

Ene 19, 2017, 1:22pm

All the President's Men is really good. It unfolds really slowly - which I don't at all have a problem with and in fact quite enjoy movies of people standing around talking. Fantastic performances too.

I am marching in my home town and also attending a silent inauguration tomorrow.

Ene 19, 2017, 1:25pm

You go, Lauren.

Report and pics, please.

Ene 19, 2017, 3:08pm

>8 laurenbufferd:, >9 Pat_D: Ah, All the President's Men. That wacky movie about the newspaper guys that insisted on having corroborating sources before they ran a story. Crazy times.

Ene 19, 2017, 6:15pm

Right? Who'd have thought it would become a period piece?

I'll be down in Atlanta for the American Library Association Midwinter conference. There's a march happening there, but I may be working while it's happening. I like to think that, by doing what I do for libraries (and the NEH, and the NEA... oh jeesus), I'm fighting the good fight even if I can't march. I might at least be able to hit up the sign-making station. Any suggestions? I'm thinking of


But I'm open to other ideas.

Ene 19, 2017, 6:31pm

My fallback is Dissent is Patriotic but my tired self wants to make a sign that says Too f***ing worried to be clever.

Ene 19, 2017, 7:13pm

Lauren, I'd say we should meet up for the march but I think it's going to be muuuuch larger than they think so it seems not so feasible. But look for me -- I'll be in the pink hat.

Ene 19, 2017, 8:18pm

I'd love to go to the march here, if I could count on my hip holding out. I'll be there in spirit cheering them on.

I remember in 2009 taking the day off of school so I could watch the inarguation with a bunch of fellow dems. Best day off ever. This time around i plan to spend the day doing lesson plans for the next several months. I may even go in for root canal just to keep me away from watching or hearing any news about it.

Editado: Ene 20, 2017, 7:58am

If any of you missed The Rachel Maddow Show last night, please make a point of catching it somewhere online today. She did the one thing that I have been screaming (metaphorically) for someone to do before this crook gets in the White House: she ran down a list of achievements of the Obama administration from the past eight years. In spite of being stonewalled by the single most unpatriotic majority in my lifetime. It's stunning, and I've said to anyone who wouldn't regurgitate the lying rhetoric that history will rate him among the greatest Presidents of modern times. Did he make missteps? Yes. Did I always agree with him? No. But this was a president who realized very early on that compromise was his only means to an end, and it's no minor miracle what he did manage to achieve.

But I digress. Watch Rachel list and describe all he's done. It's sobering even for his most ardent supporters.

The latest target hit for Trump: he wants to defund The Endowment for the Arts and Humanities, and he's supporting federal defunding of PBS. I caught a few clips of his family and him arriving in the capital yesterday and standing in front of the Lincoln Memorial, and it made me ill.

I know we tend to avoid political discussion in this little community, but frankly my dears, I don't give a damn. It's all up to us now.

Ene 20, 2017, 8:12am

Wait until he sets his sights on privatizing medicaid and medicare and phasing out social security.

Ene 20, 2017, 2:38pm

A number of Winnipeg organizations have organized a march in concert with the DC one, so Bruce and I are marching tomorrow as well.

Ene 20, 2017, 2:58pm

It's a lot like AA meetings around the Bay Area, you could go to a different march/demo every couple of hours.

Ene 20, 2017, 3:15pm

That is very funny. A friend of mine is going to a Women's March tomorrow in Toronto against the inauguration. I'm just trying to avoid the next four years. I have been going to NYC every
summer for decades but this year, I just don't know if I can stomach crossing the border. I mean as soon as I get to customs there will be a giant picture of that am I supposed
to cope with that at the start of my holiday!

Ene 23, 2017, 9:03am

I did not expect the pics on HuffPost this morning of the marchers *all over the world* carrying signs denigrating Trump. It was both heartening and discomfiting.

I know it was just an exercise in snark, but all those tweets celebrating a frozen shot on Michelle's face after Melania presented her with a gift do not help Trump opposition one bit. Michelle was merely looking for somewhere to put it, and the internet decided to use it out of context.

All that aside, and I really meant it's not a good look for us, I nearly lost my mouthful of coffee when I read this tweet:

PanamanianBowties🎀 @SheLovesBowties

"Melania giving Michelle Her Speech Back"

Editado: Ene 23, 2017, 10:30pm

Philip Roth on a Trump America and The Plot Against America

The historical Lindbergh was an isolationist who espoused a catchphrase that Donald Trump borrowed for his Presidential campaign, and for his Inaugural Address: “America First.” The fictional Lindbergh, like the actual Trump, expressed admiration for a murderous European dictator, and his election emboldened xenophobes. In Roth’s novel, a foreign power—Nazi Germany—meddles in an American election, leading to a theory that the President is being blackmailed. In real life, U.S. intelligence agencies are investigating Trump’s ties to Vladimir Putin and the possibility that a dossier of secret information—kompromat—gives Russia leverage with his regime.

Ene 23, 2017, 11:25pm

That book scared the crap out of me. I knew that America First sounded familiar. Sheesh.

Editado: Ene 25, 2017, 10:57am

I need to read that. Glad for a political thread here. I also want to reread 1984.

Gayla is doing a weekly post called something like This is Not Normal, maybe someone could link to it. It's on FB but also on something called Medium.

Ene 25, 2017, 7:52pm

I don't facebook, Karen, can you post the other link, please?

Ene 29, 2017, 8:36pm

I am so proud of my community - hundreds of protesters demonstrated against Trumps Muslim Ban today. Many more protests across the country. This will not be the end of the battle, or that last battle, but damn if it didn't renew my faith in my country. We do have checks and balances, and its us.

Ene 30, 2017, 9:56am

The idiot has mobilized resistance to a level I never expected. I'm very heartened and concerned at the same time. If he continues to enact orders based upon his belief that he is "bullet-proof," as he's so often stated, there's no telling where we are headed as a country.

There can be no doubt, whatsoever, that oil and big corp have completely taken over the GOP. None of this is in the Republican's best interest. It's the epitome of self-destruction, and the only way they stand a chance in the next two-year elections is if the actual votes are hacked.

That's why I'm also very concerned. There must be some big plans afoot to benefit big oil within the next two years. So, hold on to your hats, folks.

Feb 5, 2017, 2:22pm

I was going to initiate a Sports thread to talk about the Superbowl, but if I recall correctly, that never seemed busy enough in other iterations of our community to warrant it.

I'm totally conflicted about tonight's big game. I'm a stalwart Patriots fan going way back, and it truly is amazing what Brady's done this year... not to mention how much fun it will be watching Goodell hand him the trophy after that stupidass, spiteful deflategate thing. However, Mattie Ice is one of those (unusually) intelligent athletes, educated by the Jesuits, a general "good guy,"and one who has, year after year after year, posted incredible stats no matter how little support he'd had. If anyone deserves a Superbowl ring, it's him.

So, I honestly don't know who to root for. Being a purist, I'm just going to hope for a really, really close and exciting game which Superbowls are notoriously not known for.

Feb 5, 2017, 4:36pm

Oh, and I have zero, zero in the pool which any other year would be a sure win. Not with these two QB's, though. Figures.

Editado: Feb 13, 2017, 3:50am

Well, who'd have thunk it with those two QB's, but, yes I won the SB pool with that scoreless first quarter. Great game.

Brilliant cover. Devastating but brilliant:

~ The New Yorker Cover - February 13, 2017
By: John W. Tomac

Feb 13, 2017, 6:01am

Yes. This, and last nights John Oliver. Had lots of trouble sleeping last night.

Feb 13, 2017, 7:57am

Oh, *&%^$#&^%(*8!

I forgot to record it.

Feb 13, 2017, 2:44pm

I've been kind of avoiding a lot of the political stuff the last week. I was on a cruise where I had no internet access (I could have paid for it, but why?), and it was blissful. Since I got back, I basically hate everyone and everything that was not part of that experience. So I missed some stuff, but I don't feel like it was super important stuff...but I couldn't do anything about it at the moment if it was.

But I definitely have enjoyed John Oliver's and Samantha Bee's takes especially. Also some Stephen Colbert and that skinny dude from SNL...Seth..ugh....blanking! Meyers! Yeah, him. I just watch the clips that people link to on Facebook, mostly. Saves me time. Need to catch up on my SNL too. That shit is comedy gold!

The one thing that has just blown my mind since I got back is our two dumbfuck senators from Texas. You may know them as Dumbfuck #1 (John Cornyn) and Dumbfuck #2 (Ted Cruz). Such an embarrassment. But they are so in denial or delusional or something. Complaining about constituents actually speaking up, having opinions that don't match theirs? Clearly we must be paid, because there's no way on God's green earth that so many people would disagree with them, could they? Surely not. Like seriously. Paul Ryan is the same thing. They literally cannot believe that so many people would disagree with them about so many things. Clearly we common folk just don't understand. ARGH!!!

Feb 15, 2017, 8:37am

Not sure where this should go so I'll put it here -- basically, a trade journal for surgeons by a reputable publisher has retracted its entire February issue because of a column by its editor.

Forget chocolate on Valentine’s Day, try semen, says Surgery News editor. Retraction, resignation follow

Feb 15, 2017, 12:57pm

Aw, it's six years old. I was going to see if my boss had any interest in it as news (she wouldn't have, but I would have gotten a laugh out of her).

I have to say, given the choice I am much happier to have roses on my desk.

Feb 15, 2017, 1:27pm

I know the news is surreal, but, damn, this is some of the best investigative reporting I've seen in a long time. TNYT and WaPo are killin' it.

Feb 17, 2017, 4:35pm

I about got whiplash when I saw these headlines:

Fox News' Shepard Smith Goes Off on President Trump: 'We Are Not Fools'

Feb 17, 2017, 5:45pm

Haven't been around lately. Pat, I'll ask Gayla to come here with the link you asked for.

Editado: Feb 17, 2017, 9:15pm

I just wandered in for the first time in two months and saw that Pat was asking for this:This is NOT NORMAL

It's a bit out of date at the moment (nothing about yesterday's press conference, for example) but I will have it updated on Monday.

Feb 17, 2017, 9:26pm

The Washington Post has got a good deal for Amazon Prime subscribers—six months free and then $3.99/month after. I'm in.

Feb 18, 2017, 9:46am

Thank you both!

Feb 18, 2017, 10:13am

In case you're wondering why Trump is still holding rallies, CNN just reported he's already filed his papers to run for re-election in 2020.

There might be words to describe my reaction to that, but I doubt I can type them here.

Editado: Feb 18, 2017, 12:18pm

Someone made the argument that Trump has filed papers because it allows him to control who shows up at his public events. If it's a regular Presidential event, then he has no say. But, if he claims it's a campaign event and uses 'campaign' funds, then he has control over who enters the doors. And, given that he seems to think he should always be facing adoring crowds, I suspect we'll be seeing a plethora of 'campaign' events. Then he can claim that he's more popular than the evil press will show. Sigh.

Feb 18, 2017, 2:27pm

And we're funding the security for these campaign rallies now.

Editado: Feb 19, 2017, 8:11am

Thank you, North Harmony, NY!

This is fascinating.

Listen to the individual voices. My favorite response when the guy asks, "How do you propose we fund single payer for all?"

"STOP waging war so we can all have health care."

Feb 20, 2017, 7:32pm

Except we don't budget for wars. Most of the direct cost of the Iraq War was borrowed, not appropriated. So there isn't a "savings" if you put the cost on a credit card to begin with.

Editado: Feb 21, 2017, 11:36am

We had almost a 20 yr. cushion for social security when Clinton left the White House, and every penny of that was squandered on the Iraq Invasion. The Repugs' main argument for privatizing Medicare is that while it's evolved into an excellent program now, they keep insisting that within 8 yrs. it won't be sustainable. If they stop funding unnecessary wars, that's money saved.

Editado: Mayo 24, 2018, 3:20pm

Wow, this thread is dormant.

Lisa, what do you think of NY governor's race? Cynthia Nixon was interviewed by Chris Hayes last night.

Mayo 24, 2018, 4:02pm

I was all Team Miranda. But I don't live in NY.

Thanks for posting here, Karen. I forgot about this thread.

Mayo 24, 2018, 5:26pm

I'm not a big Cuomo fan, to say the least, but my dislike of him pales in comparison to how totally I'm opposed to non-politicians running for office that high up the political food chain. I don't care if she's a good actress (I don't know if she is or not), I don't care if she's a native New Yorker, and I don't care if she's very politically aware or progressive or smart. If you want to cut your political chops, run for community board president! Run for city council. (Actually I think city council is a great way for people to get in on the bottom rung.) But you cannot be governor of New York State if you don't have some degree of insider executive office experience, knowledge, and contacts.

Ditto that whole Oprah for President meme made me see red. We already elected one non-politician to higher office and look how well that turned out.

Editado: Mayo 24, 2018, 9:12pm

Was also totally no on Oprah. I don't think anyone could be as bad as Trump but who knows? You probably wouldn't want to lose Sandra Lee as de facto first lady,huh? (Snark)

Nancy, I would love to have this thread revived. I can't do politics on FB.

Mayo 27, 2018, 10:27am

I do like Cynthia Nixon, but I agree you need some executive experience to be governor. I think it would be fine for her to start with the state legislature, but governor?

Don't get me started on Oprah for President.

Mayo 27, 2018, 1:58pm

And maybe some executive experience for President for gods sakes!

Editado: Jun 10, 2018, 12:10am

I literally feel ill from the news today.

Border patrol agents physically fought this man to pry his 3 year old son from his arms. He was here seeking asylum. Border patrol took the baby. ‬

‪They then shipped the man off away from his son and jailed him. ‬

‪He then took his own life. ‬

I haven't been able to shake this feeling of despair, and fear. Seems like everything we ever worked for is being dismanteled and now we are doing this to people. We make phone calls write letters, march, protest - and nothing much changes. I probably need to stop watching the news but its in my blood, I want to know whats going on.

Anyway just wanted to share this. Give some thoughts and prayer (if you are so inclined) to this family and this poor man. I wonder how that border agent sleeps at night.

Jul 13, 2020, 7:43am

Wow, pretty much every thread here is moribund. So here's my question: How are folks doing during their lockdown or reopening? Has anyone gotten sick?

My life is pretty markedly unchanged, other than working from home and not actually going anywhere. I miss being able to do stuff and see people, but it's not seriously messing with my head—I have a pretty active zoom/correspondence/phone system, and as it did pre-pandemic, work is generally the center of everything and takes up most of my time. I haven't gotten sick, and the folks I know who have have recovered, although some are experiencing long-term effects. My mom died in January so I didn't have that worry on my mind, so I've just been plugging away at life.

But I'm appalled at the fact that Covid deniers exist, at how sloppily some states have been reopening, at underpaid librarians being forced to work in shelters or lose their employment status, and at every single one of the sitting president's actions. I try to keep that particular fury damped down so I can function, but it erupts here and there.

Editado: Jul 17, 2020, 6:28pm

It's been handled about as badly as possible.

I know four people who have gotten sick, one on a ventilator.

Expanding my cooking routine, watching a lot of TCM, starting to read more.

Had to have my rental house totally rewired so there goes any profit from that for the year.

But my problems are miniscule and I'm grateful. Mark redid our living and dining room floors.

Jul 17, 2020, 9:45pm

When I read about trump commanding that the hospitals send data to him and not the CDC, I hoped and prayed there would be a mass protests, and demonstations against this. Guess not. Trying not to feel hopeless, so I have stayed away from news today.

You guys remember Gayla Basham? on face book she puts out an 'this is not normal' weekly to remind us not to be complacent. She really should do this daily. You think youve heard the worse and then well the hits keep coming

Oh and Heide Lightly and her family were traveling the world and once they got to australia, they decided to stay. No more embarrassment of our leader once again getting it all wrong. They got it right.

Otherwise we are holding up, with food in the house and a roof over our head and for now virus free. We are retired, so we are out of the fray of
opening schools Feeling very badly for my colleagues who are still not being told just how they are supposed to teach in all this and just how safe will school opening be....Wondering how many teachers will quit and how they will possibly find enough people willing to put their lives on the line to replace them. I worry that we go online and just pretty much leave behind any kid or family who can not access technology or understand it.

I am disgusted how this all has been handled.Im sick of how totally inhumane this administration is, like Melania coat said I don't care do you? Should be their motto.

glad you asked? :)

Jul 18, 2020, 2:29am

Well, as most of you here know, I'm not big on sharing much personal info, but Lisa's post moved me to post an update.

As I explained, I had a major M.I. in early April. One of the first things they did when I arrived at the hospital was a COVID-19 test, which was negative. However, the circumstances preceding my heart attack were really strange. Except for my bad back, I was in excellent health after my retirement. Very active with no other issues. One day, in March, I became very ill with what I thought was either food poisoning or a stomach virus. I had a lot of very painful vomiting. It felt like I was vomiting tiny metal or glass shards. I don't mean to gross y'all out, but it was horribly painful and unlike anything I'd ever experienced. The next day I was fine. Wiped out but not sick, anymore. I never felt quite myself after that, though. I began to fatigue easily and just got weaker and weaker, so I made an app't. for a check-up, despite all the virus safeguards. Then one night, I fell asleep in my dad's recliner watching a movie. I woke up *and could not breathe.* I don't mean I was short of breath or having a hard time breathing, I mean I felt like my chest was full of concrete and I was not exchanging air at all. I threw the remote at the wall and my son heard the noise (thank goodness!), he saw what was happening and called 911. The fire station is just around the corner from our house, but by the time they were wheeling me out the front door, I was unconscious. I was told my O2 sat dropped to 63% and that's when my heart gave out. I woke up 3 days later on a ventilator in the ICU of a Trauma 1 hospital (they took me there because they were sure it was COVID).

When I awoke I was greeted by an ICU RN I had trained several years before my retirement (how's that for a coincidence?), and she informed the staff I was an SICU charge nurse for many years. I can't say enough about the excellent care I received, because it truly is a miracle I'm still here. After they weaned me off the ventilator and moved me down to stepdown, I received the good/bad news: my COVID was negative, but the M.I. was massive and left me with only a 35% Ejection Fraction. The plan was to send me home with a 24/7 portable defibrilator, set up Home Cardiac Rehab, and recheck heart function in 3 mos. I was strictly forbidden from going out and/or having nonessential home visitors. I checked in with Cardio/PCP via televisits.

I've never been totally convinced by that negative COVID test. Then, not too long ago, a big article, and feature stories on local news, reported that 35,000 COVID tests that were given in *Central FL* right around the time I was tested were deemed "unreliable." So, now all my docs (and I) think it was the virus that attacked me. When I arrived at the hospital, I had bilateral interstitial pneumonia, pulmonary edema, an active M.I., and I was in septic shock. The event, that night, was approx. 17 days after I'd had that weird stomach thing.

Sorry for all the gruesome details, but Lisa's post motivated me to write y'all for 2 reasons: to share the nightmare of my experience to, hopefully, impress on y'all how random this thing can be. As a former SICU nurse, I was fastidious about following all guidelines, and still this thing managed to get me. The second reason is: I had my 3 month f/u, and despite working diligently with the rehab, there's been no improvement. I was scheduled to go down to JFK in WPB for a very specialized coronary angoigram (not enough heart function left to risk a stress test), but then this most recent FL COVID-19 explosion happened. So, for now, I remain stuck inside with my portable defibrilator, until, hopefully, things quiet down some. But my future looks dicey, friends. We've been book buds for so many years now, and I just thought y'all should know. No sympathy replies, please. I've had an extraordinary life and will just make the best of the time I have left.

But, please, peeps: BE CAREFUL. Don't go out unless you have to.

Phew. That may be my longest post ever.

Jul 18, 2020, 8:17am

no sympathies just sending you my love and best wishes to get welll soon. Glad your son is there. We are being very careful. If you can get it, thats very scary indeed.

Jul 18, 2020, 8:55am

Damn, Pat, I am so sorry to hear. This thing is scary and so random—I'm incensed and staggered at how many still don't believe in covid's power, or that it exists at all—such a nation of selfish people. Just as the Trump admin brought out so much of the racist substructure in the country, so it has given voice to the enormous lack of compassion that exists. I can't imagine how that will ever be addressed, much less repaired.

Pat, are you still at the mailing address in PSL you sent me three years ago? Talk about being slow on the trigger... but there's a bunch of stuff on my end I need to fill you in on as well.

Jul 18, 2020, 9:50am

no sympathy, Pat, but a truckload of admiration for your bravery and will power.

Jul 18, 2020, 1:49pm

There's a reason this group has lasted so long, and I feel privileged to be a part of it. When I think of all I've "known" by way of our shared books love, it gives me a warm pleasure. If not for real-life intrusions since I retired, I'd have spent a lot more time here among you.

Lisa, you reflect my frustrations and exasperation so well. Even before I got sick, I was spending a lot of time online trying to warn and convince. I actually taught myself how to use twitter so that I could go on a mission about the early paucity of testing in this rich, "progressive" country. To say I was incensed would be putting it mildly. I knew in Feb. what the lack of testing would cost: thousands and thousands of unnecessary infections and deaths. Compound that by the Trump Syndicate brainwashing its cult that it's no worse than flu, and it was inevitable that we'd be where we are today. The real tragedy is those who followed the guidelines and were infected by those who didn't. Think of all the first responders, docs, nurses, respiratory techs, etc. who are daily risking their and their loved ones' lives for many who refused to heed the warnings. I just know that if Americans don't come out in droves, like never before, to vote Trump out in Nov., we all will suffer the repercussions.

I'm still at the Wishbone addy, Lsa.

Jul 18, 2020, 10:45pm

When covid started to hit really badly outside of the New York region I actually thought a lot about you Cindy because Arizona was one of the hot spots.
We’re not perfect up here in Canada and too many people are still acting too reckless, but many of us are just stunned about what is going on south of our border. It is unfathomable how wide-spread the virus is there and how useless the govt is. Of course no one expected anything more from Trump, but this is beyond comprehension,terrible.

Today the Canadian govt announced that our baseball team the Blue Jays would not be allowed to play in Canada this season because of their schedule of games in the U.S. I’m so proud of our govt for taking what I’m sure is not an easy stand.
80% of Canadians are now afraid of people from the U.S. coming here. Yet our economy is so dependent on yours that as you tank so will we.

It’s a horrible world we are living in.

Jul 18, 2020, 11:17pm

I think it very ironic that both Canada and Mexico have closed their borders with us

Jul 19, 2020, 8:56am

I didn’t know that about Mexico.

Editado: Jul 19, 2020, 10:59am

Jul 19, 2020, 4:54pm

Pat, this is so frightening. I am glad you survived!

Tennesssee is one of the new hotspots. We opened up too early, esp some of our more rural counties but even Nashville zipped from Phase 1 to 3 with only a week in 2. Now we are seeing a terrible spike, esp in our downtown area, a re-closing of bars and clubs, and a shortage of hospital beds. And yet there are still tourists visiting, partying, cruising downtown unmasked. It's so frustrating.
The museum where I work had been open to the public for about a month. We have lots of protocols in place, including mandatory masks. It's a manageable but I find each day exhausting.
We currently have three staff out waiting for the results of their covid tests.
My husband teaches at a private boys school which is planning to fully open up in a few weeks. He is beside himself. Our public schools are starting virtually with the hope to be back in classrooms by Labor Day. As challenging as remote learning is, he is fearful about what the first semester is going to bring. We are both hoping that the state won't allow them to open.

Jul 19, 2020, 9:05pm

Opening schools before we have Point of Care Testing and Tracing intact and reliable is insanity. I know that's a strong word to use but I chose it carefully. I don't care where any district is on the curve at the start of the school semester because 1). I'm convinced this virus is airborne, not just droplet spread. It's the only logical explanation for its rapid spread. All it'll take is one infected person sitting in a classroom, on a bus, serving in the cafeteria, and/or cleaning a school for multiple hours a day to eventually infect an entire school. Plexiglass or spaced seating or the unreliable use of masks on children won't be sufficient protection. 2). Younger and younger patients are being admitted to the hospital 3). The potential for exponential spread in communities is not worth the risk 4). Children are very adaptable. It would suck for them, at any grade, to miss an entire year of schooling, but it won't be the end of their worlds. Catching this monster just might be, though.

If you're a parent still undecided, note the CDC wanted to present their findings/data on this issue to Congress but the Trump WH is blocking them from doing so. That should be your first clue. Also, it's been widely reported that this extremely ill-timed, strong push to open schools came from "advisors" convincing Trump the economy won't improve until schools open. That's fundamentally illogical. Lies, cover-ups, lack of testing/tracing, and ever exploding hotspots don't instill safety and the economy won't improve until Americans feel safe again.

I repeat, and I can't say it enough, it's insane to even be considering opening schools as long as POC Testing and Tracing are being suppressed.

Jul 20, 2020, 3:20am

>67 Pat_D: I'm a teacher and I concur! I want nothing more than to return to school--I love my job! But our Supt. has decided that teachers must wear masks and students don't have to...we are in of the hot spots, what is he thinking? Why is he throwing us teachers under the bus? I'm looking for another job right now where I hope they care about their employees. My Dr. said this policy was just crazy and ought to be illegal. I'm 65 and I can't go into a classroom with 24 kids every 42 mins, 6 times a day when they don't have masks.

Editado: Jul 20, 2020, 11:51am

Frankly, I think these dangerous inactions by Republican officials, in re: to the virus, are criminal. They are directly responsible for the loss of life or the loss of any quality of life.

>Tess, I think you're just one of the majority of teachers who won't be risking their lives, their families' lives, and their communities' lives unnecessarily. Most teachers are inherently educated (duh), and, thus, possess critical thinking skills. They know this push to open schools is solely to serve the insane manipulations of a more and more desperate Trump/GOP.

Jul 21, 2020, 1:11am

I agree these blind lawmakers should be held for criminal activity. Also these horrible younger people who go to covid parties. I think covid has brought out some really wonderful traits in people-the front line health workers,many paid a disgustingly low wage, but sadly the virus has shown how ugly so much of our society is. The greatest increase among people catching covid are the 19-49 set. Their arrogance and disregard makes me furious. No regard for their families and no regard for the hospital workers who have to risk their own lives by treating them.

Jul 21, 2020, 11:55am

Regarding teachers, a friend shared this with me on social media. Worth a look: I Spent Three Weeks in School, With Kids, Under Covid-19

Jul 21, 2020, 1:42pm

There's plenty of data available about the risks. All of the summer day camps throughout the country that opened and did their best to follow guidelines, *all* of them, wound up closing due to infestations.

Also, yesterday the Florida Teacher's Union filed a suit against Gov. DeSpineless for opening schools. Seems there's a silly State Constitutional mandate which insists public schools must provide a safe environment.

I'm a big sports fan, but going ahead with MLB, NBA and the NFL is just more big corporate greed/insanity.

Oh, BTW, did you know that Trump gets Point of Care COVID-19 testing *multiple times a day*? Yet, this mega-rich country cannot mass produce POC tests for the public??? Yeah, right.

Jul 21, 2020, 8:02pm

>67 Pat_D: I am a teacher and I totally agree that opening schools now should be a criminal act. Our administration/school board has decided that teachers much wear masks but students don't have to. I teach high school. Ohio is going up in flames with Covid-19 cases/deaths right now and one of the newest age groups to come down with it is the 14-40 year old group--the ones who think they are invincible. So my boss is telling me I have to be in a room of 24 students with no masks for times 5 per day? Sort of like throwing the teachers under the bus if you ask me.

Now that my rant is done, although I don't know you at all, please take care of yourself and I hope that your health improves.

Jul 22, 2020, 2:37am

Thanks, Tess.

Jul 22, 2020, 5:35pm

Tess right there with you. Im a retired teacher for preschool children with special needs. The class was already a petri dish, but over the years I was able to somehow fight it all off and stayed pretty healthy. Now tho, you could not pay me enough to try and do that. Aside from not being able to keep preschoolers in their chairs let alone 6' apart, some of our kids are tube fed or are on oxygen already,or have other issues. Keeping them healthy is going to take more than a few guidelines, and keeping me from getting sick is going to be impossible. Fortunately I don't have to worry about it for myself, but I so feel for my colleagues being forced to make the choice - either return to work, or basically you are fired. And the kids i care so much about, and the families Ive worked with, I can't imagine how they will all function when most cannot access technology. Just forget about school for a semester, and provide day care for parents that need to work - tho thats brings up a whole other can of worms.....

I feel like all that was done last spring with lock downs and such was just a waste of time once Az decided to open up, numbers were already soaring but no one cared.
Finally the Gov is trying to fix it all but he's got the mouth breathers demanding their right to die breathing down hsi neck.

you take care of yourself too, do what you need to for yourslef and family to stay safe.

Jul 22, 2020, 10:43pm

>75 cindydavid4: I am giving administration until August 1 to come to their senses. If they do not, I will resign a job that I dearly love for the sake of the health of myself and my family. So sad, because there is a teacher shortage and there will be 5 others at my school that also resign. It's sad that students have to wear masks when they go into Walmart or McDonald's, but not when they go to school.

Editado: Jul 30, 2020, 12:34am

>72 Pat_D:
>75 cindydavid4:

Our county has just moved to Zone 4--the highest for Covid-19 cases. Likewise, my school is sticking with opening 5 days per week (which is ok with me), BUT no masks for students (and I teach 14-19 year olds). That is absurd. My doctor says it is morally and legally irresponsible. Therefore, today I officially resigned. I would not have done so had the mask policy been different. But I'm not going to work in fear each day (6 classes x 24 unmasked students per class). I'm sad, but also a burden has been lifted from my shoulders. I'm a bit excited! I may be retired from teaching, but I'm in no way ready to sit at home. P.S. I still teach online 1 course for a university.

Jul 29, 2020, 2:56pm

Weve been bleeding teachers for many years. now its going to be even worse; who are they going to get who is certified, willing to put their lives in danger. good for you making the choice but I know how heart breaking it is. I retired one year earlier than planned because our new director was tearing apart a nationally known progra. I know if I stayed I would have been miserable. But now with this happening, I am really glad I willl not be there. Just feel awful for the kids the parents and all teachers and staff who think they have a choice. And of course they will blame teachers for being selfish and abandoning their kids......when we cannot cure societies problems. Lots to do out of school to use your skills for

Jul 30, 2020, 12:35am

>78 cindydavid4: I agree, Cindy. The president and our governor wants the teachers to be the cure-all for the economy. We can't be that.

Jul 31, 2020, 9:37am

My first day as a "free" woman, relatively speaking. By now I would be busily updating my syllabus, etc. Instead, it's like this is surreal. I'm thinking, "what am I going to do next?", although I have a million things to do around the house that have been somewhat neglected. Today I'm just wondering and wandering!

Jul 31, 2020, 11:20am

Just a warning - I started crying from through august because all my friends were getting their rooms set up, and I missed all that as well as the kids. The solution was to help them,which I did. You might not though, ymmv

Jul 31, 2020, 10:13pm

Isaias is predicted not to get any stronger than a Cat 1, but you can bet the ranch we'll be without power for an extended period. Looks like it could make landfall right here, on the Treasure Coast. I'm done with riding 'em out and suffering in 100-degree heat with 90% humidity (can't run the generators during the storm). I don't think the heat would be safe for me and it certainly won't be safe for my Dad. So my son's going to get as many panels up as he can (we had one day to prepare for this one), and then we're packing up and heading into Central Fl to a pet-friendly Holiday Inn Suite (had to get a suite, because there's no way I'm eating anything not prepared by myself in this COVID-19 epicenter). I really don't think there will be much wind damage with this one. More worried about water damage and days without power.

One thing these storms are good for: I'll get plenty of reading done.

Ago 1, 2020, 5:17am

Tess, I saw this and thought of Cindy and you:

When will "the ask" overburden teachers?

I think it's criminal that teachers are being pressed to make such a heartbreaking choice. GA just had to close another overnight camp. Close to 300 of the campers tested positive. This insanity is in an endless loop.

I was adrift, also, when I first retired. I loved my job, had worked long and hard to achieve my certifications, and then incurred a terrible back injury and had to retire early. It took a little while, but I was just beginning to settle into it and really enjoy it when I got sick. My point is, make the most of it while you can. You earned it.

Ago 1, 2020, 5:21am

Tess, I saw this and thought of Cindy and you:

When will "the ask" overburden teachers?

I think it's criminal that teachers are being pressed to make such a heartbreaking choice. GA just had to close another overnight camp. Close to 300 of the campers tested positive. This insanity is in an endless loop.

I was adrift, also, when I first retired. I loved my job, had worked long and hard to achieve my certifications, and then incurred a terrible back injury and had to retire early. It took a little while, but I was just beginning to settle into it and really enjoy it when I got sick. My point is, make the most of it while you can. You earned it.

Ago 4, 2020, 2:31am

We dodged a bullet (I wound up canceling our inland reservations), only had a few strong feeder bands. Hoping our Carolinian and upper east coast friends stay safe. These tropical storms can sometimes cause more damage than you'd expect. Good news is the pressure of this one is staying in the high 980's and it's moving fast (22m/hr).

Only 3 months to go :(

Ago 4, 2020, 6:01am

Thanks for that Pat. Since spring I am appreciating my time more, reading a lot more, and with david retired makes things easier (tho so much for travel plans we'd been thinking about when we both retired!)

Ago 5, 2020, 6:32am

Didn't really know where to post this.....

Ever wonder what your reading speed is? Ever wonder what is normal? I would think that LT'ers have a higher than average reading speed, because practice makes perfect. I took a fun little test, I say fun because it's not under strict test conditions, but here are the results:

Your speed: Your speed was 621 words per minute (Level 13, general, story 1)
Your Comprehension: Your comprehension was 100%

With a modest 33% increase, your reading speed would be reading at 825 words per minute and you would save 20 minutes of every hour read.

I wondered about my reading speed because when I listen to audiobooks I have it on normal speed. But when I have the book and read along I have to turn the speed up, to sometimes 120%. So I read quicker than I listen! I don't hurry through books, I just read at what speed is "normal" to me.

The average reader (according to this site) reads 300 WPM, and a good college student reads 450 WPM.

If you want to test yourself: (I choose complexity level 13),....

JFK claimed to have a reading speed of 1200 WPM!

Editado: Ago 5, 2020, 12:45pm

double post

Editado: Ago 5, 2020, 12:46pm

I am generally a very fast reader with good comprehension with material that interests me.. well my scores depended on my comfort level with the theme History I got 328 wpm and a score of 100 (chose complexity level 10) but general theme level 13 I scored 220 and 0% With earth and space sciences levle 10 I scored 400 and comprehention 100

Will be fun to play around with this. Curious the reading level of each story, did you see that anywhere?

Ago 5, 2020, 1:06pm

Tess, we used to have a regular here (Kat), who would break that app.

My reading comprehension is very good, and I *can* be a fast reader, but it all depends on what I'm reading. If I'm reading writers like Coetzee or McCarthy, etc., I prefer to go slowly even reading sentences over and over.

P.S. You might want to post stuff like this in "The Loft." Just a suggestion.

Ago 5, 2020, 1:40pm

I'm a pretty slow reader, and fine with that because I'm also thorough and careful and if that's what it takes for me, so be it. I often go back and reread sentences and paragraphs, and I take notes on pretty much everything (more because my memory is terrible than anything else, but I'm also often reading for a review, book club, or work project so I need to), which is also why I can't do audiobooks.

I don't quite trust the idea of speed reading, though I'm sure some people can and still get substance out of what they read... but what I really don't care for is numbers of books read as bragging rights. To me that's like notches on a bedpost vs. quality encounters, and I don't think more books read = a better reader. I very pointedly don't count my end of year numbers—it feels a little cheap to me—and I shy away from that kind of reading challenge.

Which isn't to say the above isn't probably a fun quiz, it's just not my kinda thing.

Here's the link to the Loft, which is kind of a catchall section for odds and ends.

Ago 5, 2020, 1:46pm

>85 Pat_D: We got the bullet you dodged, Pat—not as bad as the direct hit you would have gotten, but NYC had a lot of trees down and huge power outages all over the tri-state area. We had a big branch come down and take out the little wire fence around our lettuce garden, lots of yard debris, and we lost half power (we have two power feeds to the house for some reason with no rhyme or reason to which outlets are which) for most of the day until about 8 p.m. I walked around the neighborhood this morning and wow, there's some serious damage—trees split, entire trees uprooted, power lines and poles down, and a bunch of cars very badly trashed. I'm amazed we got our full power back as early as we did—some streets are still unnavigable. Anyway, it could have been a lot worse for us... I'll be doing yard cleanup all weekend and we'll have to get our tree guy to take away the big stuff, but I'm not calling insurance adjusters so I'm happy.

I'm glad you didn't get worse. How did everyone else hold up?

Ago 5, 2020, 1:51pm

>91 lisapeet: Oh, I don't think 621 is "fast" if college students read at 450. I saw this on FB and just thought it was interesting! And true, when reading NF I think most would be slower, I know I would. Gotcha about The Loft.

Ago 5, 2020, 3:25pm

>93 Tess_W: Yeah, I'm definitely not dissing the idea of clocking how fast you read! Just putting in my two cents as a slow reader... hey, slow food is a thing. I say slow reading is too.

Ago 5, 2020, 5:23pm

Im with you, I know I can read fast, but probably wouldnt want to be a speedreader, Id miss half the enjoyment of the story, I do count the books I read every year to compare with previous years, and to sort out how many books I read are fiction or non. As I get older Im definitely reading more non! Meet you at the Loft! Tess let us know if you need help finding it.

Ago 5, 2020, 9:41pm

It was definitely a fun link, though, Tess.

HooBoy, y'all did get a good dose of it up there, Lisa. I just went to the weather channel web site and clicked through a bunch of pics (a tornado in Philly! What?!?). I'm sorry for the extra work for you, but I'm glad it wasn't any worse than that.

Nov 15, 2020, 11:58am

I'm loving the new "My List" feature built into every Washington Post article. It's so user-friendly and clean looking. I know there's plenty of 3rd party apps/extension that do the same thing, but IMO this one's exceptionally well designed.

Nov 16, 2020, 2:04pm

I haven't noticed that. What is it for? Are you seeing it in a browser or using the app on your phone?

Editado: Nov 18, 2020, 9:42am

I saw it in my browser (Chrome). Haven't checked the app, yet.

Open any article, find the byline and date, and then look to the right. You'll see a large + sign next to "Add to List."

To access your list, click the menu under your profile and click My Reading List. It takes you to a nice, clean page with two tabs: My List and My Archive.

Here ya' go, Julie.