DID: Thoughts on Recovery

As an adult survivor of physical and psychological abuse, many of my struggles are with internalized negative messages about my worth as a person.

I win more often than not, but mastering the illness takes patience,
energy, skill and a good therapist.

Without a federally funded program like Medicare, I would live at the
mercy of my symptoms.

Access to effective treatment has almost made me well enough to
return to work.

Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness: these three unalienable rights
require equal access to essential services for all citizens.

Healthcare is a human right, not a privilege of the rich.

Citizens of advanced democracies do not live at the mercy of a corrupt élite.

Tell the GOP to vote no on Trumpcare.

The phone number of the congressional switchboard: 202-224-3121
Tell the GOP to vote NO on Trumpcare!

Congressional phone numbers found on Twitter.

Image (c) Rob Goldstein 2016 All Rights Reserved

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The Week John Kennedy Fubared

Shortly before his inauguration the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) briefed John Kennedy on a plan developed during the Eisenhower administration to train Cuban exiles to invade Cuba.

On April 17, 1961, against the advice of his military advisors, John Kennedy approved an assault on Cuba at the Bay of Pigs.

Cuban armed forces defeated the U.S. backed invasion within two days.

On April 21, 1961, Kennedy held a tenth press conference attended by 402 reporters.

The questions are tough and Kennedy looks tired, but he is never insulting, he doesn’t blame the previous President, he doesn’t tell anyone to sit down or shut-up, he is the President and he knows his responsibilities to his office, the Constitution, the press and the American people.

This is how a normal President interacts with the press in a democracy.

Kennedy starts the press conference by saying  he doesn’t want to talk about Cuba beyond statements he’d made the day before, announces U.S. support for a UN attack on World hunger, increased insurance dividends for Veterans and the Peace Corps first project.  Then he takes questions.



Noteworthy moments:

QUESTION: Mr. President, quite respecting your feeling of not going beyond your statement of yesterday on Cuba, there still is in print this morning, quite widely distributed, a published report that you took the decision to continue training Cuban refugees with arms provided by this government, and for releasing ships and fuel for launching the current operations in Cuba. Furthermore, this report says, that you reached this decision against the advice of Secretary Rusk and Mr. Bowles. Now is this true?

THE PRESIDENT: I think that the facts of the matter involving Cuba will come out in due time. I am sure that an effort will be made to determine the facts accurately. As for me, I am confining myself to my statement, for good reason.

QUESTION: Sir, since last Saturday, a certain foreign policy situation has given rise to many conflicting stories. But during that time, reporters in Washington have noticed that there has been a clamming up of information from formerly useful sources. To my knowledge the State Department and the White House has not attempted to take a representative group of reporters and say “these are the facts as we know them.” And this morning we are not permitted to ask any further questions abut this foreign policy situation. In view of the fact we are taking a propaganda lambasting around the world, why is it not useful, sir, for us to explore with you the real facts behind this, or our motivations?

THE PRESIDENT: Well, I think in answer to your question that we have to make a judgment as to how much we can usefully say that would aid the interest of the United States. One of the problems of a free society, a problem not met by a dictatorship, is this problem of information. A good deal has been printed in the paper. I wouldn’t be surprised if those of you who are members of the press would be receiving a lot of background briefings in the next day or two by interested people or interested agencies.

There’s an old saying that victory has a hundred fathers and defeat is an orphan, and I wouldn’t be surprised if information is poured into you in regard to all the recent activities.

Now, I think we see some of the problems, to move from this particular case, in the problem of Space, where the Soviet Union — no reports were made in regard to any experiments that they carried out. “Our man in space” — I saw in a national magazine about some student said the Americans talk a good deal about their man in space. The Soviet Union says nothing and yet it wins. Well, that is one of the problems of a democracy competing and carrying on a struggle for survival against a dictatorship.

But I will say to you, Mr. Vanocur, that I have said as much as I feel can be usefully said, by me, in regard to the events of the past few days. Further statements, detailed discussions, are not to conceal responsibility because I am the responsible officer of the government, and that is quite obvious, but merely because I do not believe that such a discussion would benefit us during the present difficult situation. I think you will be informed and some of the information, based on what I have seen, will not be accurate.

QUESTION: You have practiced what has been described as the quiet diplomacy approach (to Russia). Your speech yesterday seemed to suggest that you have perhaps decided upon another approach?

THE PRESIDENT: No, I wouldn’t attempt to make a judgment or response to that. I think that — I am concerned about these kinds of problems which I just described. I don’t feel satisfied that we have an effective answer to it yet, and I think it’s a matter of the greatest possible concern to all of us, because I think events have been moving with some speed.

The use which Communists (Soviet Union) make of democracy, and then when they seize power, the effectiveness with which they manage the police apparatus so that dissent cannot arise, and so that the people can no longer express their will, liquidation by gunfire of the opposition, or by forcing them out of the country to be refugees -this suggests the kind of problem which we are going to have in this decade.

In my judgment, it is an extremely difficult matter for the free nations to deal with. But I must say that it is a matter to which we must address all of our energy and all of our attention.

This isn’t the Arthurian Kennedy of Camelot.

This is clearly a humiliating moment for President Kennedy but he is in command of the facts, understands the issues, gives detailed and respectful answers, and takes responsibility for his decisions.

We’re fortunate to have videos like this one.

We can see and hear the important events of the last 100 years.

President Kennedy’s News Conference 04/21/1961
U.S. Information Agency. (1982 – 10/01/1999)
The Internet Archives

Full transcript of President Kennedy’s News Conference 04/21/1961

To learn more about the Bay of Pigs visit the JFK Presidential Library.

Divide and Conquer: Russia’s War on Western Democracy

First posted 10/17/2016 as “I Like Ike”

The GOP ‘establishment’ bemoans our divided Nation as its Right Wing
PACS produce political ads designed to frighten and enrage its base.

Last night I posted a montage made of images from ’13’, a documentary by director, Ava DuVernay.

The montage is mix of modern and archival footage of brutality against people of color and civil rights activists that plays out as Donald Trump speaks wistfully of the good old days.

In that spirit I thought I would juxtapose two very different political ads produced by the GOP.

Below is a political ad made in the ‘Good Old Days’.

I’m sure there are plenty of people still alive who remember this ad.

The year is 1952.

The ad is for Eisenhower

screenshot from a 1952 political ad for Dwight D. Eisenhower that shpws three stupid looking donkeys standing behind a fence
I don’t know what this image says about Democrats but whatever it is it doesn’t say evil.

Donald Trump might remember this ad; he was six when the ad came out.

Hillary Clinton was four.

The ad was produced by Roy Disney and Citizens for Eisenhower-Nixon.

Its target audience is the post war working class:

screenshot from a 1952 ad for Dwight D. Eisenhower
Economically diverse groups of people like ‘Ike’



The ad below was made after the first presidential debate of 2016.

Screen shot from a September 26th 2016 political ad released by the GOP PAC, Future 45 which shows Isis hostages just before execution.
Screen shot from a September 26th 2016 political ad released by the GOP PAC Future 45

It is funded by a Right Wing PAC with a curious name: Future 45.

Future 45 describes itself as follows: “Future 45 is an independent organization devoted to educating voters about the challenges facing our country as they prepare to elect the 45th President of the United States.

Screen shot from a September 26th 2016 political ad released by the GOP PAC Future 45 that continues to promote the discredited Benghazi Scandal
Screen shot from a September 26th 2016 political ad released by the GOP PAC Future 45.

Our next president will shape the Supreme Court in a way that will influence the direction of our nation for decades to come. The strength of our economy and the security of our nation depend upon electing a strong, proven leader.

A photo of Hillary Clinton and Vladimir Putin that is faked
Neither of these two people are in the same room.

While Donald Trump is a proven businessman with a plan to reignite our economy and recover American strength through peace, Hillary Clinton is a politician following the Obama model that has landed us in a fragile economy with slow growth feeling less safe than ever.

Americans understand this and are speaking up”

The Obama model that has landed us in a fragile economy with slow growth feeling less safe than ever?

The sentence reads like it makes sense but upon closer examination it’s says nothing.

We are in a fragile economy that feels less safe than ever.

Who made this ad? Putin?

The ad was published September 27, 2016

It aired on the following stations:

CNNW 8
KMGH (ABC) 3
WCVB (ABC) 3
WMUR (ABC) 2
KNXV (ABC) 2
KTNV (ABC) 3
WEWS (ABC) 3
KCRG (ABC) 3
KGO (ABC) 3
WISN (ABC) 3
KPHO (CBS) 1
KPIX (CBS) 1
KLAS (CBS) 1
KGAN (CBS) 1
WPVI (ABC) 3
KCNC (CBS) 1
WOIO (CBS) 1
MSNBCW 1
WTMJ (NBC) 1
WFTS (ABC) 1
FOXNEWSW 1
FBC 2

all Materials found on the Internet Archives

Further Reading:

Trump Is Borrowing Putin’s Media Playbook

How False Equivalence Is Distorting the 2016 Election Coverage

Isolation and Propaganda: The Roots and Instruments of Russia’s Disinformation Campaign

Updated 5/31/2017 to include this RNC ad released November 1st, 2016 after the FBI was rumored to have re-opened the Email Investigation.

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Did Putin think He’d ‘Win’ the French Election?

 

A photo of a poster of Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin as seen in a photograph taken on a Moscow Street.
A Poster of Donald Trump and Vladimir Putin as seen in a photograph taken on a Moscow Street.

I was playing with a screen shot of paintings of Vladimir Putin and Donald Trump in a Moscow shop window.

It was from a November 9, 2016 article in the New York Times.

I thought the idealized ‘Trump’ in the painting was funny so I brightend
the image to get a better look.

The painting is a triptych.

Here, I made a little video of it.

We don’t need anyone to tell us what we can clearly see with our own eyes.

A brightened screenshot of a November 9th NYT article about celebrations of Trump's win in Moscow. The brightened image reveals a triptych with "Marine" Le Pen as the third person
Is that “Marine” Le Pen?

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Felique Dupré in the Haunted World

1.

Footsteps: an affair.

“You’re late.” says Felique.

“Ten minutes.” Marcy replies.

“I cannot kiss on an empty stomach.” Felique orders à la carte
and gazes fearfully into Marcy’s eyes.

“What bothers you my little bon-bon?”

“Nothing, Mon cher. Try these snails.”

Yet the fear remains…

“Oh Marcy!” Felique feels suddenly silly, “Will I die if I make
love to you?”

Marcy giggles, “Only If you forget to breath!”

Tragedy replaces the fear in Felique’s eyes . “Breathing reminds me
of my mother.”

“Is your Mother still alive, dear Felique?”

“I was ten. Mother chased some wild geese and drowned in the Seine. This is why my love for you is so painful. Everything reminds me of Mother, which makes me cry. Oh my poor stupid Mother!”

2.

Felique sobbed as they hopped the E Train for Harlem; she sobbed for
her poor Mother.

Fellique turned to Marcy, her face as grey as the Moon.

“I’m a troubled woman.”

“Lamb.” Marcy replied.

“I do nothing but need.”

“Lamb.” Marcy repeated.

“Have I told you of my Mother?” Felique asked.

Marcy’s head throbbed with love; she gripped Felique’s shoulders: “Did your Mother drink?”

“Wine…White.” Felique replied.

“Alcohol has wrecked your life!”

Felique offers a dry cackle: “Ah, that it was that simple my wise, merciful,
long-suffering woman. She said she loved me.”

Marcy was strong yet gentle: “Denial! Make love to me now!”

“In the road?”

“Nothing sullies those who love!”

“Not even history?”

“Lamb.”

3.

What it is about love? As if a conquered people had gathered to rewrite history.

Felique moves with the purity of a child who spies a new perception: all mothers are one Mother and the World is one big Mother

Hot tears dribble onto Marcy’s mound, whose love expels the ghost of Felique’s affliction.

“O! Que j’aille à’ la mer,” sighs Felique.

A digital photograph of an avatar that represents a young woman named Felique Dupré in a virtual Manhattan
Felique Dupré in the Haunted World

 

To be continued…

(c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

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On This Harvest Moon

“Harvest Moon” from ‘Unplugged’ by Neil Young
Released: 1993. Track 9.

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And now a word from Adam Smith

Science is the great antidote to the poison of enthusiasm and superstition.
Adam Smith

Trina: A Slice of Death

Trina chats with a snake in the garden.

The snake curls up on Trina’s lap: “What if I die and never
come back?”

Trina replies: “I saw a slice of death, once. When I got to
heaven flash bulbs went off and I heard a chorus of angels
go ooooh.”

“Then what?”

“I saw lots of homosexuals: they danced and had sex and made
everyone jealous.”

“Then what?”

“Then, I passed through long tube and came out here!” Trina
smiles at the memory.

The snake looks up with concern: “Is that what’ll happen to me?”

“I don’t know.” Trina pulls out a notebook. “God doesn’t like you.”

“What are you doing?” asks the snake.

“I’m writing a poem.” Trina replies.

“What’ll you do with it?” The snake slithers up and onto the notebook.

“Sell it to Proctor and Gamble, silly!”

The snake drops from the notebook to the grass. “Have you given much thought to space?” he asks.

“Not in a million years.” Trina replies.

Then she sighs and writes her rhyme:

I was feelin’ kinda shitty
really small and itty bitty
garden snakes talked and
my lovers all walked
but at least
I was still very
pretty.

(c)Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

Trina: A little Nick Nack at the Bar

Trina wants to know more about plant life.

She wants to watch the Hula boys dance.

A small plane drifts through the sky.

Trina thinks about the day she met Roger.

They were in an airport in New York and they fell onto love.

Now she lives in Hawaii.

Roger blew kisses to her as she boarded the plane.

“Oh why do I always fall into love just before I move?” she sighs.

Palm fronds clatter in the Plumeria scented breeze.

Trina writes:

“Roger made meat for me in the stockyards and in my love for him I wore the talisman of a tiger’s tooth. Waikiki is an excellent place to miss the unknown.

A group of tourists from Oregon mingles with a group of tourists from Uganda.

An interesting crotch catches her gaze and she looks up.

Ricardo Montalbán! She knows him from YouTube! How fabulous!

“Hi…I’m Trina.” she blushes.

“Hello,” Ricardo Montalbán replies. “I am a child of the Universe and I work
in a bank.”

Trina giggles with joy. “Then you can afford to be here! What’s your name?”

“Ricardo Montalbán!”

Trina’s right eyebrow rises like the hem of a skirt. “Hawaii is so romantic, don’t you think?”

Ricardo Montalbán gives Trina and everyone else who’s watching a great big smile.

“It’s like a fan-tasy island!” he replies,”Come; let’s have a little Nick Nack at the bar!”

 

(c) Rob Goldstein 2015-2017 All Rights Reserved

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Exiting Chinatown

You see it, don’t you?

You see the way?

You see the way
through?

All the way through?

Yes, it’s this way: the way
is through you.

It’s this way please.

Please follow through.

(c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

Mr. Anguish

An
alliance
of exotic
oils
lulls me
to heat:
waxy,
pointillist,
and
drooping.
She rises
from
an erotic
tableau
of moldy
old
pornography
and begs
the gleam
In my eye
for mercy.

Mateo 2017

Steely DanAja
The Internet Archive

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The Acquired Sanity of Death

I fought

for the

great

revolution

when the

poor will

come first

and

be safe

and

live like

the

happy trash

on TV–

but the

revolution

was

murdered

and

starved–

but I

escaped

into

loony bins

where

I took

pills and

acquired

the sanity

of

death.

B Goldstein July 2015

This post was inspired by a chat with Melinda at Looking for the  Light about my alternate Bobby.

Broken English

attached
to
self-loathing
his
bleeding
never
stops

MG 2017

Marianne FaithfullBroken English

 

First published in March 2017 as a status update, I decided to use the image for something else.

Domestic Violence as a Weapon of War

Children abused by narcissists learn to shut-up and agree

We learn to normalize the brutality of everyday life in an abusive family.

The US Department of Justice defines Domestic Violence as follows:

Domestic Violence is a pattern of abusive behavior in any relationship that is used by one partner to gain or maintain power and control over another intimate partner.  Domestic violence can be physical, sexual, emotional, economic, or psychological actions or threats of actions that influence another person. This includes any behaviors that intimidate, manipulate, humiliate, isolate, frighten, terrorize, coerce, threaten, blame, hurt, injure, or wound someone.  US Department of Justice

We use the term gaslight  to discuss an insidious form of domestic violence.

The department of justice defines two critical elements of the pattern related to gaslighting:

Emotional Abuse: Undermining an individual’s sense of self-worth and/or self-esteem is abusive. This may include, but is not limited to constant criticism, diminishing one’s abilities, name-calling, or damaging one’s relationship with his or her children.

Psychological Abuse: Elements of psychological abuse include  – but are not limited to – causing fear by intimidation; threatening physical harm to self, partner, children, or partner’s family or friends; destruction of pets and property; and forcing isolation from family, friends, or school and/or work.

The strategic goal of gaslighting is to make a child or partner doubt his perceptions and question his sanity.

As the target becomes more dependent, he begins to doubt his thoughts and opinions.

At its worst the target becomes utterly dependent on his abuser for his sense of reality.

According to the National Domestic Violence Hotline

Gaslighting typically happens very gradually in a relationship; in fact, the abusive partner’s actions may seem harmless at first. Over time, however, these abusive patterns continue and a victim can become confused, anxious, isolated, and depressed, and they can lose all sense of what is actually happening. Then they start relying on the abusive partner more and more to define reality, which creates a very difficult situation to escape.

Gaslighting is a mind game played by the most malignant kind of abuser.

This kind of abuser has no use for love or morality.

This kind of abuser must obliterate his target’s capacity for both.

This kind of abuser wants your mind.

Animated Gif found on Google of a young woman with the caption We're here to discuss your surrender
The Narcissist wants your mind.

How does gas lighting affect a person’s mind?

Gaslighting is psychological and emotional in its effect.

According to the Department of Justice, ″Emotional abuse is any kind of abuse that is emotional rather than physical in nature. Even though there is no established definition for emotional abuse, emotional abuse can possess a definition beyond verbal and psychological abuse. Blaming, shaming, and name calling are a few identifiers of verbal abuse which can affect a person emotionally.”

 

Text image that describes the confusion of gaslighting
This kind of abuser has no use for love or morality.

As an abuse survivor I was instinctively aware that something was wrong with the way the press and Donald Trump treated Hillary Clinton during the 2016 election cycle.

From stalking Clinton during the debates to character assassination and threats of violence Trump’s campaign for President stank of psychological abuse.


An abusive man and his political party psychologically raped a woman in front of the Nation and no one saw it.

It was weird.

That Access Hollywood Tape should have been the death of Trump’s campaign.

 

Reprocessed internet meme of Trump's comments regarding his sexual assaults on women
When a man shows you what he is believe him

At any other time in U.S. history a taped confession of sexual assault would be the death of a politician.

Yet, 62,984,825 voters thought Hillary Clinton was more corrupt and unqualified to be president.

Trump emerged from the cesspool of his political campaign with the power of the President.

Even if I factor in the fringe on the fringe right that would gleefully destroy
the nation just to piss off the unicorns called liberals his win made no sense.

Then the leaks started and Trump fired Sally Yates and Comey.

Americans had the chance to listen to the concerns of the men and women who dedicate their lives to saving ours.

And those of us who were paying attention discovered that we are under attack by the Russian government in ways we can barely comprehend.

The best way to for an average person to understand the Russian hack of the U.S. 2016 election is the NATO Handbook of Russian Information Warfare.

Below is a copy of the handbook as a PDF file for you to download:

Handbook of Russian Information Warfare – NATO Defense College

Animated gif of Vadimir Putin saying :It's hard to believe that trump ran to a hotel to meet with girls of a low social class"
It’s hard to believe that trump ran to a hotel to meet with girls of a low social class.

From the New York Times, the purpose of Russian disinformation:

The fundamental purpose of dezinformatsiya, or Russian disinformation, experts said, is to undermine the official version of events — even the very idea that there is a true version of events — and foster a kind of policy paralysis.

One way Putin’s achieves this goal is to deploy an army of internet trolls whose  function is to overwhelm and derail legitimate public debate.

Their battlefields are Facebook and Twitter.

from the Atlantic, 2014

A June article by Max Seddon of BuzzFeed reported the Kremlin was spending millions of dollars to pay English-speaking Russians to promote President Vladimir Putin and his policies in U.S. media like Fox News broadcasting and The Huffington Post and Politico news sites. Trolls are reportedly expected to manage multiple fake accounts and post on news articles 50 times a day, often with sentiments as simplistic as “Putin makes Obama look stupid and weak!”

In order to promote its narrative, the Kremlin has adopted a two-fisted strategy, unleashing its troll armies even as it tightens Internet restrictions at home. On August 1, Russia enacted controversial new legislation aimed at muzzling social media, the last bastion of the country’s embattled opposition and a free flow of information about the war in Ukraine.

Anton Nosik, a popular Russian blogger and programmer who is sometimes referred to as the “father of the Russian Internet,” says the Kremlin is falling back on a time-honored strategy in its propaganda war on Ukraine. But this time, he says, the stakes are higher than ever before. (BuzzFeed reports that at least one trolling company—Internet Research Agency in St. Petersburg—is expected to spend more than $10 million in 2014 alone.)

These trolls are out in force in the United States and they aggressively attack anyone who challenges the Kremlin line.

Copy of a twitter direct message that says You Can't Be Christian and a Faggot
You Can’t Be Christian and a Faggot

For instance, my post, We are Human, was hit by trolls.

The following comment is an example of skilled online gaslighting:

Screenshot of a comment left on my blog post, We are human.
Gaslighting on the Internet, an example


Let’s break it down:

My correspondent appreciates my opinion and tells me what part of it is true. He asks for specific instances of the violations I referenced as if he has no access to Google. He then goes on to repeat the Kremlin line that all governments are cruel and corrupt  and illustrates it with the logical fallacy that an alleged crime by Obama obviates my right to be outraged by the possible theft of the 2016 election.

He closes by saying my fears are an artistic exaggeration (i.e. crazy)  and invites me to share more of my fears.

Distort, devalue and demean.

The comment is a gaslight from the opening sentence to the closing line.

A meme about #gaslighting found on twitter
Distort, devalue and demean

Imagine thousands of paid media trolls and automated trollbots at work 24 hours a day fabricating a false reality.

From Wikipedia, regarding Russia’s Web Brigades:

A collection of leaked documents, published by Moy Rayon, suggests that work at the “troll den” is strictly regulated by a set of guidelines. Any blog post written by an agency employee, according to the leaked files, must contain “no fewer than 700 characters” during day shifts and “no fewer than 1,000 characters” on night shifts. Use of graphics and keywords in the post’s body and headline is also mandatory. In addition to general guidelines, bloggers are also provided with “technical tasks” – keywords and talking points on specific issues, such as Ukraine, Russia’s internal opposition and relations with the West. On an average working day, the workers are to post on news articles 50 times. Each blogger is to maintain six Facebook accounts publishing at least three posts a day and discussing the news in groups at least twice a day. By the end of the first month, they are expected to have won 500 subscribers and get at least five posts on each item a day. On Twitter, the bloggers are expected to manage 10 accounts with up to 2,000 followers and tweet 50 times a day.

Putin’s gaslighting has the same strategic goal as a guy who psychologically tortures his wife.

He wants us helpless:

A page from the 2016 NATO Defense College Handbook of Russian Information Warfare
A page from the 2016 NATO Defense College Handbook of Russian Information Warfare

In most civilized nations psychological abuse is a considered a crime.

In Russia it’s a way of life.

Is this how we in the United States wanna live?

Animated gif of Putin in a business meeting found online
Did everyone sign this agreement? I don’t see your name.

See President Puppet for another post on this topic.

Animated gif found online used for educational purposes
He Said Inarguably Vladimir Putin is a better leader than Obama

 

 And in closing

An animated gif that says When it hits you the GOP was complicit with Trump
When it hits you the GOP was complicit with Trump

Some of the formatting of this post is inspired by one of my favorite bloggers, D. Parker, at yadadarcyyada.com . Give her a visit. 🙂

All images in this post except for the header are found online and are used for educational purposes only.

(c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

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We are Human

I’m depressed this weekend and I don’t think I’m alone.

I feel overwhelmed by life in the United States.

How sad to watch intelligent people defend the rise of cruelty,  lies, and chaos.

Trumpism plays havoc with my DID because this is the abusive world of my childhood: the racist bullies with swastikas and white robes; homophobes who murdered gay  men with impunity.

The 1960’s was a time when it seemed only straight, white male lives mattered but we did have a government that imposed  the rule of law; we did have a government the people could petition for change.

The Trump Administration has declared war on human rights and the rule of law.

His cult members no longer recognize their brothers and sisters as human.

The United States has a sickness and it’s destroying our lives.

I’m going to take a short break this holiday because I need to take care  of myself.

This is not an America I can celebrate.

How sad to progress this far only to come back to life as a  dehumanized target in fear for his life.

We are human.

After all these years, why does this still need to be said?

(c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

Valencia Street Aria

On a walk along San Francisco’s Valencia Street toward the Mission I heard Mozart’s Exsultate Jubilate K165-Alleluia stream from the second story window of an old Victorian.

It was a wonderful San Francisco day and the gardens on Valencia Street were in bloom.

Share this walk with me:

Valencia Street Aria

Music: Mozart: Exsultate, jubilate: iv. Alleluja (McNair, Gardiner)
Sylvia McNair, soprano; English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner,
cond.
Philips, recorded March 1993

Video (c) Rob Goldstein 2017 All Rights Reserved

Let Me Ask You A Question – 7/26/17

from Dream Big, Dream Often

Dream Big, Dream Often

gce5rz8mi

Let me ask you a question…

How much of your self-worth/self-identity is attached to how you look?

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On July 26, 2017, “We The People” Need To Call US Senators About Repeal Of ACA

from Gronda Morin

Gronda Morin

Editorial cartoon on Paul Ryan and Republicans and health careBy now, July 25, 2017, we have learned that the US Senate had a vote of 51 to 50 which allows debate for the repeal of Obamacare/ ACA/ Affordable Care Act. Senators will be making several attempts to repeal healthcare that is one- sixth of the US economy. Some amendments will require 60 votes and some 50 where Vice President Mike Pence would be required to cast the tie breaking vote.

I was very disappointed and let down when Senator John McCain came onto the Senate floor, to make clear that while he didn’t support the current bill, he agreed that they should at least begin debate on the health legislation.  And he did this after flying across the country due to his absence because of his recent surgery and a brain cancer diagnosis. Still, he delivered a sobering rebuke to GOP leaders about their resistance to work on a healthcare…

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Thistledown Lightning Contest!

Check this out! from Teagan’s Books

Teagan's Books

Thistledown GirlOn a truly fae whim, I’m doing a lightning contest. Woot!  I’m giving away a couple of faery favorite things. 

Lightning Contest!

Until 6 PM Eastern Only!

I’m very sorry, but I have to limit this to readers in the USA only.

How to enter

If you are in the USA, leave a comment on Episode 3. If you’ve already commented, they you are already entered!  

I will assign a number to each person who comments from the USA.  Then I will use a random number generator to match the winning numbers to the commenter.  If you win, I’ll email you asking for your street address so Amazon can ship the prize.  (Unfortunately that only works within the USA.)

First Prize — A faery mug.  Enjoy your favorite beverage while you read Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam.  (Or perhaps Colleen Chesebro’s The Heart Stone Chronicles: The Swamp Fairy:…

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