Short Ribs and Random Thoughts Jan 17 2018

TRUMP’S MEETING ON DACA etc  As Peter Baker of the NYT put it,   “He did not lapse into incoherence, but neither did he demonstrate mastery of policy details after a year in office.”   Well said.

THE NORWEGIAN INVASION-   Just when you think it can’t get ANY worse, Trump lowers the bar AGAIN.   He makes vile comments about  Haitians and pines for more Norwegian immigrants.  I can’t think of a more clear example of racism.  Then this morning we get to see the HHS Secretary, a blonde Viking type with an extra “j” in her name, declare that she has lost her hearing and sight when it comes to Trump.  Maybe we SHOULD record all his meetings. His selective reality is more than a joke.

BLUNDERS IN PUBLIC LIFE- been a big week for those, from the  fellow in our local welfare department who doesn’t know how to track expenses to the gigantic screwup in Hawaii. When I lived there we had frequent tsunami warnings and when those sirens went off I knew it would take a long time to get home to Waialua because they held us up at Wahiawa.  Everyone complained they were too eager to shut the road but no one questioned the basic competence of the system.  The State employees in Hawaii are abysmally paid, and  folks who are paid poorly are usually supervised poorly too.  One thing I can tell you:  EVERYONE on Oahu knows who  the hapless wrong-button pusher was.  The Coconut Wireless puts electronic media to shame.

OH THE IGNORANCE!  Ana Cabrera on CNN makes $150K a year and supposedly has a degree from Washington State,  but when someone used the term”kabuki”, referring to diplomatic machinations between the two Koreas, she said “Oooh, I’ll have to look that one up”. Is there any high school graduate from California who wouldn’t recognize the term “kabuki”?  I don’t think so.

YOU CAN’T MAKE THIS STUFF UP-  Like everyone else I’ve been wanting to read “Fire and Fury”.  Eureka Books is taking orders but has no idea when their shipment will come in. Believe it or not, my Chinese -speaking friend was approached online by a fellow who wanted to publish a Chinese translation but his details on rights were pretty sketchy so my friend held off but meanwhile the guy sent us the whole book!  Unfortunately, he sent it to my friends PHONE so we’re reading it to each other page by page.

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Me and the Caucus

During the years I lived in Hawaii (1982-1993) I had to adapt to the fact that Hawaii does not hold primary elections- instead, they have caucuses.  One year- I think it was 1988- I decided to attend a caucus in support of Jesse Jackson and the Rainbow Coalition.

Like most things in Hawaii,  the caucus was extremely laid back. We met in a classroom at Hali’ewa Elementary School.  My fellow Caucusoids were thirteen very nice, very elderly gentlemen,  primarily of Japanese background. The youngest one was seventy. We got to know each other, talked story for awhile, then filled out ballots. The count came in with no surprises: thirteen ballots for Sen. Dan Inouye, one for Jesse Jackson.  We did some paperwork,  then the conversation turned to the fact that they normally had someone from that precinct, or whatever it was called, attend the State convention in Maui, and they had no one lined up to go.

They were all looking at me hopefully.  One of them- he must have been in his nineties- told me about the good time I’d have.  You might think it would be easy to talk someone into a weekend on Maui but believe me, when you’re already on Oahu, it’s no big deal. I asked the nonagenarian what type of folks I would be meeting with on Maui.  “Oh, just like us”, he assured me. I decided to pass.

I may have missed out on a fascinating experience by not attending but I’m pretty blasé about political conventions,  having had a good seat at the 1964 Goldwater convention at the Cow Palace. But that’s another story for another time.

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