Monday: Hili dialogue (Leon exchange with Mietek)

Well, another damn work week is upon us, it being Monday, October 12, 2020. It’s National Pumpkin Pie Day, and if you’re a member of Costco, I recommend heading over there to pick up one of their 12-inch diameter pumpkin pies, made of quality ingredients and costing only $5.99. It’s very tasty, weighs nearly four pounds, and if you can’t finish it, it freezes well, too.

It’s Thanksgiving in Canada (I bet they’re giving thanks that they’re not Americans!), as well as National Gumbo Day, Pulled Pork Day, Columbus Day (see below; not to be mentioned further), Indigenous Peoples’ Day, Native American Day, and Freethought Day, celebrating the end of the Salem Witch trials in 1692.

News of the Day: The charade Senate confirmation hearing for Amy Coney Barrett begins today at 9 a.m., lasting through Thursday.  I don’t even know what could possibly result in a negative vote, so it’s going to be softballs by Republicans and virtue-flaunting by Democrats, who have nothing to gain from their questions. Only an unearthed skeleton in the closet could create an “October surprise.”

Hypocrite Lindsey Graham, head of the Judiciary Committee, will be running the hearing. For a takedown of this sorry excuse for a Senator, see this article by Sidney Blumenthal in the Guardian. Suffice it to say that Blumenthal calls Graham “Trump’s poodle.  (h/t Jez).

Speaking of that, a misguided rabbi, writing at the New York Times, said that we shouldn’t be judging Amy Coney Barrett based on her religious beliefs.

A judge’s jurisprudence — as well as the propriety of such a nomination so close to an election — are worthy matters of debate, and they are appropriate reasons to oppose or support Judge Barrett’s nomination. But her faith is not.

But Rabbi Soleveichik doesn’t seem to realize that Senators won’t be opposing Barrett simply because she is a Christian, but because it seems likely, and so she has written, that her judicial opinions should align with her strong Christian beliefs. If she’s pre-decided cases based on the words of Jesus, we should know that

In a news analysis at the New York Times, David Sanger recounts Trump’s last-minute attempt to settle scores against political opponents like Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama. These include Trump ordering Secretary of State Pompeo to release more of Hillary Clinton’s emails  (h/t Woody). A quote:

[Trump] is making it clear that prosecutions, like vaccines for the coronavirus, are useless to him if they come after Nov. 3. He has declared, without evidence, that there is already plenty of proof that Mr. Obama, Mr. Biden and Mrs. Clinton, among others, were fueling the charges that his campaign had links to Russia — what he calls “the Russia hoax.” And he has pressured his secretary of state to agree to release more of Mrs. Clinton’s emails before the election, reprising a yearslong fixation despite having defeated her four years ago. [JAC: Pompeo is following orders]

Presidential historians say there is no case in modern times where the president has so plainly used his powers to take political opponents off the field — or has been so eager to replicate the behavior of strongmen.

He’s running scared, and striking out like a bull who’s faced the picador.

Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 214,604, an increase of about 400 deaths over yesterday’s report. The world death toll remains at “1.0 million +”, with 3,943 deaths reported yesterday.

Stuff that happened on October 12 includes:

  • 1492 – Christopher Columbus’s first expedition makes landfall in the Caribbean, specifically in The Bahamas.
  • 1692 – The Salem witch trials are ended by a letter from Province of Massachusetts Bay Governor William Phips.
  • 1773 – America’s first insane asylum opens.

This was Eastern State Hospital in Williamsburg, Virginia (where I went to college), originally known as “The Public Hospital for Persons of Insane and Disordered Minds”. It was originally brutal:

Though the aim was noble, the practices were brutal by modern standards. Bleeding, bullying, blistering salves, and electrocution were all standard treatments. This was changed under the supervision of Dr. John Galt, who believed the mentally ill were entitled to dignity and could be reintegrated with society.

Galt also knew that just because the patients were crazy didn’t mean they weren’t witty. It is said that when hospital sponsor John D. Rockefeller strolled through the grounds and introduced himself to an inmate, the inmate replied, “Oh sure. And I’m Napoleon Bonaparte.” Thanks to a donation from Rockefeller, the hospital was moved about 3 miles west to Dunbar Farms, to accommodate its large patient population.

By the time I arrived there, some of the buildings had been converted to student dorms on the outskirts of town, which are in the photo below. All of us were scared to go near the real hospital.


  • 1792 – The first celebration of Columbus Day is held in New York City.
  • 1810 – The citizens of Munich hold the first Oktoberfest.
  • 1892 – The Pledge of Allegiance is first recited by students in many US public schools.

The words “under God” weren’t added until 1954.

  • 1915 – World War I: British nurse Edith Cavell is executed by a German firing squad for helping Allied soldiers escape from Belgium.

Cavell was shot at only 49 despite international pleas for mercy. Here she is:

The toll?  2,735 New Zealand casualties, of whom 845 were killed.

Here’s one of the first iron lungs (they are no longer used). When I was a kid, and before polio vaccine was widespread, we were all afraid of winding up in one of these:

  • 1945 – World War II: Desmond Doss is the first conscientious objector to receive the U.S. Medal of Honor.

The movie “Hacksaw Ridge,” which is quite good, was made about Doss’s life, starring Andrew Garfield as Doss and directed by Mel Gibson (Garfield got an Oscar nomination for his performance). Doss, a Seventh-day Adventist, wouldn’t carry a gun, but became a medic and saved the lives of 75 men, dragging them to safety under heavy fire. If there is a CO hero who was a soldier, he’s mine.   Here’s a short video that shows some of the scenes from the movie and from Doss’s life, followed by a photo of Doss getting the Medal of Honor from Harry Truman:

Doss getting his Medal of Honor. Photo from Getty. Source.

  • 1960 – Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev pounds his shoe on a desk at the United Nations to protest a Philippine assertion.

Yes, he did, and I remember it. Here’s a rare video showing it:

  • 1998 – Matthew Shepard, a gay student at University of Wyoming, dies five days after he was beaten outside of Laramie.
  • 2002 – Terrorists detonate bombs in the Sari Club in Bali, killing 202 and wounding over 300.
  • 2019 – Eliud Kipchoge from Kenya becomes the first person to run a marathon in less than two hours with a time of 1:59:40 in Vienna.

Here’s the last kilometer of the race showing Kipchoge’s victory:

Notables born on this day include:

  • 1865 – Arthur Harden, English biochemist and academic, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 1940)
  • 1875 – Aleister Crowley, English magician and author (d. 1947)
  • 1921 – Art Clokey, American animator, producer, screenwriter, and voice actor, created Gumby (d. 2010)
  • 1932 – Dick Gregory, American comedian, actor, and author (d. 2017)
  • 1970 – Kirk Cameron, American actor, screenwriter, and Christian evangelical/anti-evolution activist

We mustn’t forget Cameron and Ray Comfort’s famous “banana video”, with the principals forgetting that the commercial banana is a sterile triploid, bred by humans, not God:

Those who cashed in their chips on October 12 include:

  • 322 BC – Demosthenes, Athenian statesman, (b. 384 BC)
  • 1858 – Hiroshige, Japanese painter (b. 1797)
  • 1870 – Robert E. Lee, American general (b. 1807)
  • 1915 – Edith Cavell, English nurse (b. 1865)
  • 1924 – Anatole France, French journalist, novelist, and poet, Nobel Prize laureate (b. 1844)
  • 1940 – Tom Mix, American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1880)

Mix, of course, was a famous cowboy movie star, and helped popularize cowboy boots. Here’s a pair of his personal boots that were auctioned off for a lot of dosh. Note the hand tooling and extra-high heels. (This reminds me; it’s almost boot season.)

  • 1946 – Joseph Stilwell, American general (b. 1883)
  • 1969 – Sonja Henie, Norwegian figure skater and actress (b. 1912)
  • 1978 – Nancy Spungen, American figure of the 1970s punk rock scene (b. 1958)
  • 1997 – John Denver, American singer-songwriter, guitarist, and actor (b. 1943)
  • 1999 – Wilt Chamberlain, American basketball player and coach (b. 1936)
  • 2003 – Bill Shoemaker, American jockey (b. 1931)
  • 2012 – James Coyne, Canadian lawyer and banker, 2nd Governor of the Bank of Canada (b. 1910) [JAC: I don’t know him but perhaps he’s a distant relative.]

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Hili begins her kvetching as the cold weather approaches.

Hili: The leaves on the trees are starting to change colors.
A: I like it.
Hili: I prefer spring.
In Polish:
Hili: Liście na drzewach zaczynają zmieniać kolory.
Ja: Ja to lubię.
Hili: Ja wolę wiosnę.

And in nearby Wloclawek, Mietek and Leon, BFFs, seem to be looking for mushrooms.

Leon:  You look at the left and I will look at the right side. They must be here somewhere.

In Polish: Ty patrz z prawej, ja z lewej. Muszą tu gdzieś być.

From Bruce:

From Nicole, a holiday decoration:

Another pandemic meme from Moto:

From Titania. I wonder if this is a real prom. I suspect so because everyone’s wearing masks. Still . .  .

From Barry. THIS is why I never feed bread to waterfowl and tell others they shouldn’t, either. This bird won’t ever fly because people fed him bread:

Also from Barry. There’s sound.

This woman may become mayor of Portland in the next election. She’s not as bad as her dress, but she’s not great, either. As cesar says, “Under Mao’s Cultural Revolution, several million people were murdered. Che was ruthless and vicious toward gays.” But of course the Portlanders don’t worry about that; they like revolutionaries. 

One from Simon:

Tweets from Matthew:

Well, I don’t think Hunter Biden really won the Nobel Prize this year, as he wasn’t with the organization, but even so, this is a gotcha moment:

What an excellent carver!

Now this is a tree! I’ve never seen one this big as gingkos weren’t introduced to America until much more recently:


  1. Posted October 12, 2020 at 6:58 am | Permalink

    Doss got an Oscar nomination for his performance
    Or Garfield?

  2. Rick Bannister
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    Well Jerry, in my 78 years I have given thanks many times that I am not American but never so often or so sincerely as in the past four years. It is truly frightening how your country has become so polarized.

    • rickflick
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:44 am | Permalink

      You’re lucky to be on the outside looking in. The inside feels like a nightmare or an episode of the Twilight Zone.

    • Glenda Palmer
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

      On several occasions lately I have to watch my mouth because I do not want to offend or appear boastful as a Canadian. I am on Zoom with the British Columbia Humanist Association and there are several Americans who join us.

      Anyway, it has to be extremely discouraging for the many rational folks to our south that there are great numbers of avowed followers of that contemptible president. I do recognize that his election was the culmination of years of dumbing down the American public. Most Canadians are holding their breath as our counterparts in US practically lurch into this upcoming election.

      An additional uneasiness here is that large parts of our population will observe the success of divisiveness and extremism – then chose to follow the example. Of course this is happening already. 😟

  3. flayman
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:04 am | Permalink

    “…because it seems likely, and so she has written, that her judicial opinions should align with her strong Christian beliefs. If she’s pre-decided cases based on the words of Jesus, we should know that”.

    Has she though? I’ve looked at some of what she has written which is being used against her and it’s not quite as described (go figure). I agree with the Rabbi on the basic idea that a judge’s faith alone should not be disqualifying. Democrats should ask her to summarize her views on privacy, due process, and equal protection law. Personally I’d like to hear her say who some of her favorite historical Justices are and why. If she named Brandeis, for example, she would go up in my estimation.

    • Ken Kukec
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

      You’re aware the two-page ad in The South Bend Tribune that ACB personally signed onto as a member of the group “St. Joseph Right to Life,” while a Notre Dame law professor, stating that life begins at the moment of fertilization, and that, therefore, Roe v Wade is barbaric and the destruction of frozen fertilized ovums left over after an in vitro fertilization is tantamount to murder? And of the article she wrote, also while as a ND law professor, saying that Catholic judges who felt themselves bound by the Pope’s criticism of capital punishment should recuse themselves from death penalty cases?

      SCOTUS nominees routinely pay lip-service to to the giants in the Court’s history, such as Louis Brandeis, so I’d wouldn’t put much stock in that kind of statement.

      • flayman
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:44 am | Permalink

        Yes, I’m aware of these things and how they have been portrayed, as well as of a book review she wrote while she was a law professor. The views on abortion expressed in that ad could be considered extreme, but her critique of Roe is mainly as a judicial overreach, hence the “raw exercise of judicial power”. Like any good Catholic she does believe that life begins at conception. I’d be willing to bet that Joe Biden secretly believes this too, but views the current law as an acceptable compromise.

        Ruth Bader Ginsberg was also critical of Roe and felt the matter would have been better decided as an equal protection issue. Women’s groups at the time of Ginsberg’s nomination were afraid that she would vote to overturn Roe, which just goes to show how inaccurate predictions tend to be of a candidate’s jurisprudence. Who could have predicted Gorsuch’s opinion in Bostock (another originalist)?

        As for the point about her suggesting that a Catholic judge should recuse rather than hand down a death sentence, I have to say this cracks me up a bit. As a Democrat (I presume), do you personally have a problem with a judge refusing to go against his or her conscience on capital punishment? Recusal is a tool at a judge’s disposal for allowing conscience to prevail. That’s better than going with conscience when the law requires otherwise.

        Here’s a congressional research report that talks about the difficulties in predicating Coney Barrett’s jurisprudence from her record, and to some extent her writings:

        I think if she gets her hands on a case that reconsiders Roe, she will vote to overturn parts of it rather than all of it. She has suggested that the main controversy with Roe is not the fundamental right to choose, but rather one of funding. That said, I disagree with anyone who says her appointment would mean a 6-3 split on abortion and other major social issues. Gorsuch is not as conservative as Republicans had hoped and Roberts will generally defer to the precedent (Citizens United being an exception). He has already upheld the precedent of Whole Women’s Health, which he had dissented on, when he concurred with the majority in June Medical Services. I don’t know what Kavanaugh would do, but the case would surely be dependent on the facts.

        • Ken Kukec
          Posted October 12, 2020 at 12:06 pm | Permalink

          Like any good Catholic she does believe that life begins at conception. I’d be willing to bet that Joe Biden secretly believes this too …

          Joe Biden has been quite clear that, as a practicing Catholic, he believes this expressly, which is why he is personally opposed to abortion. But, like nearly all non-right-wing Catholic officeholders, he does not think that his personal religious beliefs regarding the ensoulment of zygotes should be foisted upon women who do not share those religious beliefs.

          And, since it cracks you up, perhaps you could explain by what logic Catholic jurists who follow the Church’s teachings regarding capital punishment should (as Barrett stated in her law review article) recuse themselves regarding death-penalty cases, but Catholic jurists who follow the Church’s teachings regarding abortion should not similarly recuse themselves from hearing abortion cases.

          • flayman
            Posted October 12, 2020 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

            Abortion cases are not about individual abortions. It is not a criminal trial where the accused will be put to death if found guilty. It is a constitutional exercise to determine whether the state legislature is within its power to enact a law that restricts the provision of abortions to some degree, whatever that is. The jurists are not literally deciding whether or not to abort a foetus.

            • Ken Kukec
              Posted October 12, 2020 at 2:17 pm | Permalink

              In some cases, judges most certainly do decide whether individual woman can terminate their pregnancies. Take, for example, the decision now-Justice, then-Judge Brett Kavanaugh handled while on the DC Circuit, Garza v. Hargan, in which an unaccompanied minor immigrant applied for the right to terminate an unwanted pregnancy, or, for that matter, any other case in which a minor applies for authorization to terminate a pregnancy. For that matter, at issue in Roe v. Wade itself was whether the woman who went by the pseudonym “Jane Roe” would be able to terminate her pregnancy.

              By the same token, capital punishment cases are often presented in appellate courts as challenges to specific state statutory death penalty schemes.

              Should a jurists who have religious compunctions that require a particular outcome in either abortion cases or capital cases be required to recuse themselves from such cases? I see no principled basis for distinguishing the two.

              • flayman
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 2:43 pm | Permalink

                Yes, I suppose you’re right. And obviously the Roe case was different. But it’s still adjudicating on the matter of what a woman may do with regard to her unwanted pregnancy. It would not, for example, require a woman to terminate a pregnancy that she did not wish to. I can’t think of any case like that. And having won the right to terminate a pregnancy, the pregnant woman is not required to follow through on it. It’s a choice. So I think this is materially different due to the indirect nature of it. It does not challenge the conscience in the same way.

                What recusal avoids is the conflict of interest that might cause a jurist to find in a way that satisfies his/her conscience but does not deliver what justice demands. Judges in America do not decide criminal cases without a jury, but a judge might be tempted to exclude certain evidence or direct a jury to disregard it in order to escape a guilty verdict if the outcome would be capital punishment. Or a judge may refuse to hand down a sentence of capital punishment, but that would give rise to arbitrariness.

                Judges are entitled to recuse themselves (and should) when a conflict like this arises. That could also happen with an abortion case, but it seems more likely that we’re talking about a panel of judges where some will simply dissent.

              • Ken Kukec
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 4:10 pm | Permalink

                The distinction you cite is illusory. In capital cases — even in capital cases where the defendant waives a jury trial and leaves the decision to the judge — the imposition of the death penalty is not self-executing. Carrying out the execution requires the signing of a death warrant by a governor (or, in the case of the federal death penalty, by the president). A governor or president is not required to sign a death warrant because a court has imposed (or affirmed) a death penalty; he or she has the inherent power to commute the sentence instead.

              • flayman
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 4:42 pm | Permalink

                While that is true, it leaves an awful lot to chance. It doesn’t offer much reassurance as a backstop. It still puts the judge in a difficult position, one which they may feel will bring judgement down upon themselves when the time comes. I really don’t see it as the same moral quagmire as abortion law, of which cases have not been about a woman’s right to choose in a very long time.

              • flayman
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 4:43 pm | Permalink

                …by which I mean, abortion cases are not the same moral quagmire.

      • rickflick
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:48 am | Permalink

        Yes fellow worshipers, every sperm is sacred.

        • infiniteimprobabilit
          Posted October 13, 2020 at 6:10 am | Permalink

          My favourite musical number! Thanks for cheering me up!
          ‘Let the heathen spill theirs
          On the dusty ground
          God will make them pay for
          Each sperm that can’t be found’

          conjures up an incredible mental image 🙂


      • flayman
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 11:30 am | Permalink

        I didn’t have it before, but I’ve managed to find the ad in question here:

        The Guardian implies that Coney Barrett agrees with the organization’s more extreme views which it recounts from an interview with the executive director of St Joseph County Right to Life, but in fact those views are not expressed in the ad to which she has signed her name. The most extreme element of that ad is its referring to Roe v Wade’s legacy as barbaric, which is not really such an extreme view if you believe (as many do) that abortion is murder. I am not on that side of the argument, but I feel the need to point out that there have been some exaggerated claims circulating. If we can’t trust the “respectable” press to be objective on the role of Israel in the middle east or the role of racial bias in virtually everything, then why should we trust them to report accurately on this? Bottom line, I don’t.

  4. BJ
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    That person running for mayor in Portland and was leading by eleven points when I checked the other day. She also calls herself the “antifa mayor” and has criticized the current mayor for being too harsh on protesters/rioters, who have been going for 100 days now.

    The antifa-fascist mayor who is a fan of Che and Mao. Well, I guess they weren’t technically fascists — one was a murderous revolutionary and bigot, and the other was a dictator who killed tens of millions of people over wrongthink.

    Meanwhile, speaking of pie and Thanksgiving, here’s a question for everyone: what are your favorite pies? Every Thanksgiving, we get pies from a local place that makes them from scratch. I always get my four favorites: pumpkin, pecan, coconut custard, and rhubarb.

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 8:22 am | Permalink

      My favorite pies are pumpkin, Shaker lemon, deep dish blackberry or sour cherry.

      • BJ
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:16 am | Permalink

        I’ve never had a shaker lemon pie, nor even heard of it, so I’ll be on the lookout. But that does remind me that I forgot to mention key lime pie. Yummmm. Graham cracker crust.

        • Jenny Haniver
          Posted October 12, 2020 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

          I’ve never made one and I’d never known of them until I saw them displayed at a fruit stall at our local farmers’ market. I bought a slice and was immediately hooked. Problem is they don’t always have them and one slice ain’t so cheap. One pie is downright expensive so I must learn to make them. Here’s a recipe. The pie uses whole lemons sliced thin with a mandoline You can use any citrus fruit.

          I love Key Lime pie, too. I make mine with a gingersnap crust.

          • merilee
            Posted October 12, 2020 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

            Thanks for the recipe, Jennifer. I’m also with you on ginger snap crust with key lime pie. We have a bakery about 20 min away that sells key lime pie by the slice, and also chocolate croissants and some amazing wild-rice bread with onions.

            • Jenny Haniver
              Posted October 12, 2020 at 4:28 pm | Permalink

              Wild rice bread with onions???!!! Sounds like some First Nations culinary appropriation. Sure sounds good!

              • merilee
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

                I’ll have to ask them if it’s First Nations related. Also black rice, I believe. Very unusual and I try not to drop in toooo often because covid calories…

              • Jenny Haniver
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 5:34 pm | Permalink

                I’ll gladly appropriate anything toothsome from any culture. Just found this recipe It looks mighty good. We can buy wild rice here. though I imagine you can just put on your hip boots boots and wade right out in the marshes to harvest your own — makes it more authentic that way.

              • merilee
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

                Wow, thanks! “My” bread is darker. I must investigate what’s in it and will let you know.

          • BJ
            Posted October 12, 2020 at 3:12 pm | Permalink

            I’d thank you for the recipe, but I’ve never baked anything serious in my life; I will, however, pass it on to a family member who does bake and tell her to make it 🙂

            • Jenny Haniver
              Posted October 12, 2020 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

              Hey, get your relative to get shakin’ and bake you a Shaker lemon pie!!!!! Also a key Lime with gingersnap crust. If Merilee seconds my suggestion it’s definitely worth trying though, of course, always de gustibus.

              • BJ
                Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

                She made a key lime pie last weekend! I’m so in love with graham cracker crust that I’ll sometimes just eat around the leftover pie and just have crust for a snack. As good as gingersnap crust sounds, graham cracker crust is going nowhere 🙂

    • Andy Lowry
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 8:51 am | Permalink

      Rhubarb (sorry Jerry), sweet potato, chocolate cream, and lemon meringue.

      • BJ
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:14 am | Permalink

        Ah, yes, I forgot that our host is a rhubarb heretic. Burn him! Burn him at the stake!

      • Posted October 12, 2020 at 9:23 pm | Permalink

        I like key lime and peach pies the best, but my complaint is that most pies (including Costco’s generous deep dish pies) are waaay too sweet. Half the sugar or less would suffice IMO.

    • revelator60
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

      The good people of Portland have also just toppled statues of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt (

      I guess they prefer such noted humanitarians as Mao and Che Guevara.

      I know a couple of sane people who live in Portland, but I fear they are becoming a marginalized minority.

    • Steve Pollard
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

      I don’t really like sweet pies. All my favourites are savoury: steak, kidney, mushroom and ale; game (pheasant, partridge, rabbit and/or venison); shepherd’s or fish (both with mashed potato toppings, not pastry); and full-bore, old-fashioned English pork pie.

      • BJ
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

        This is blatant cheating! These things all have the word “pie” in them, but this is a conversation about dessert pies, so I’m sorry to say that your pies don’t count. Still, I do love a good chicken pot pie!

  5. Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:29 am | Permalink

    I’m sure Trump is just indulging his decrepit revenge fantasies, maintaining the narrative and pre-empting possible post-election calls to have him locked up in case the coup fails, but I hope Obama, Clinton and the Bidens have good lawyers.

    This won’t be the first time that people mistake Trump’s paranoid behaviour for a weak position. They forget how clueless and ignorant he is, as well as how ruthless his cronies.

  6. GBJames
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:44 am | Permalink

    That’s one heck of a ginkgo tree!

    • darrelle
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:15 am | Permalink

      It is just gorgeous!

  7. StephenB
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    This magnificent gingko tree reminds me of the pair of tall gingkos outside Village Hall in La Grange, Illinois, where I used to work. While not as huge as the one in this photo, they are nonetheless very tall and magnificent in their own right.

  8. Ken Kukec
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    Doss, a Seventh-day Adventist, wouldn’t carry a gun, but became a medic and saved the lives of 75 men, dragging them to safety under heavy fire. If there is a CO hero who was a soldier, he’s mine.

    A World War I medal of honor winner, the highly decorated Sgt. Alvin York (famously played by Gary Cooper in the eponymous movie by Howard Hawks) also initially claimed conscientious objector status, based on his membership in the Church of Christ of Christian Union, until being persuaded that his religious compunctions and military service were not inconsistent.

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 8:53 am | Permalink

      York, however religious was not a Seventh-Day Adventist and I think his preacher helped him make up his mind about severing. The fact that he could shoot like nobodies business helped as well. My mother-in-law has been a Seventh Day for many, many years. Long time ago her church was passing around CDs about Doss. They were really proud of his story as well they should be.

  9. Jenny Haniver
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 8:36 am | Permalink

    When I read about Eastern State Hospital, “Titticut Follies” immediately came to mind, the incredibly sad documentary on Bridgewater State Hospital for the criminally insane in Massachusetts, made in 1967.

    I will say no more. Once seen it can’t be unseen

  10. Posted October 12, 2020 at 9:06 am | Permalink

    Wait…WHO is John Galt?

  11. Posted October 12, 2020 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    Hunter Biden actually was chairman of World Food Program USA, the program’s American fund raising branch. I’m not sure when he stepped down. (He’s not currently on the the board.)


  12. Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:07 am | Permalink

    Many pundits have said that voters will go for Biden if they feel that it is safe to do so. In attacking Clinton, Obama, etc., Trump is trying to remind those Republicans currently leaning toward Biden that Democrats are evil and that Trump is the “safe” vote.

  13. merilee
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 10:33 am | Permalink


  14. jezgrove
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 11:14 am | Permalink

    “1692 – The Salem witch trials are ended by a letter from Province of Massachusetts Bay Governor William Phips.
    1773 – America’s first insane asylum opens.” – Sounds like 1773 was a bit late then…!

    • Randall Schenck
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 11:45 am | Permalink

      If you think that is bad, most of the mental health facilities built in the later 19th century are all closed in the late 20th century. The facilities now are either the prisons or the street. Just take your pills and you will be fine.

      • jezgrove
        Posted October 12, 2020 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

        Or stay holed up at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue…

  15. Curtis
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 1:12 pm | Permalink

    Kipchoge did not run a sub two hour marathon. He did run the the first marathon distance under two hour. It was event where he had pacemakers in a Vee formation and other stuff that is not allowed in a race.

    He is a great runner and holds the world record for a marathon (2 hours, 1 minutes, 39 second) but no one claims he really ran a sub two hour marathon.

    It would be similar to running a mile downhill and claiming some record.

    • jezgrove
      Posted October 12, 2020 at 2:45 pm | Permalink

      I was going to make the same point – I won’t dispute Kipchoge’s achievement, but it is far from being an official record like Bannister’s sub-four-minute mile.

  16. sugould
    Posted October 12, 2020 at 8:09 pm | Permalink

    Never saw the Ray Comfort & his Banana clip before. I now have newfound respect for the banana, and zero for the nitwit holding it.

    • infiniteimprobabilit
      Posted October 13, 2020 at 5:50 am | Permalink

      Watch Kurt’s face while Comfort is rabbiting on fondling that banana, I think he’s trying not to fall off his chair laughing. I certainly couldn’t control myself.

      A dirty mind is a terrible thing to waste…


  17. Posted October 13, 2020 at 12:47 am | Permalink

    I presume the “don’t feed bread to ducks” goes for pigeons also….

    My dog and I feed the pigeons in the park every night but I buy proper bird seed and they love it. And its cheep as chicken feed!

    I’m a big celebrity there now and it is a great NYC covid hobby.

    D.A., Manhattan

  18. lola742
    Posted October 16, 2020 at 7:51 pm | Permalink

    What was the date on that pie ?

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