Wednesday: Hili dialogue

October 5, 2022 • 6:30 am

Greetings on a Hump Day (or, as they say in Mongolia, “Чухал өдөр “); it’s Wednesday October 5, 2022, and by the time you read this, I’ll be in the air to Boston on an early-morning flight. It’s National Apple Betty Day, It used to be called “Apple Brown Betty”, and that’s all over the web, so I’m not sure if it’s been renamed for demeaning people of color; Wikipedia doesn’t mention that.

It’s also the end of the daylong Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, National Pumpkin Seed Day, Global James Bond Day (the first Bond film premiered in London on this day in 1962), Do Something Nice Day, and World Teachers’ Day.

Stuff that happened on October 5 includes:

Do you notice how often these entries involve the expulsion of Jews? Here’s my relevant joke:

A guy walks into a bar and notices a man talking to the bartender down at the other end. The guy does a doubletake because the man talking to the bartender really resembles Hitler. So the guy goes up to the man and says “Excuse me, but did anybody ever tell you that you look like Hitler?” The man says “Oh, but I am  Hitler. I have been reincarnated and I am back on Earth to kill 10 million Jews and 33 geese!” “Oh, my God! That’s terrible! But why 33 geese?” Hitler then turns to the bartender and says “See? I told you nobody cares about the Jews.”

Here’s a contemporary illustration. The March began as a protest against the high price of bread, became mixed with political opposition, and the March on Versailles (not just women by this time), led to the crowd removing Louis XVI from his palace:

Here’s the aircraft, a Voisin III, that shot down a German plane. Wikipedia notes,

“While flying a Voisin III, Sergeant Joseph Frantz and Corporal Louis Quénault of Escadrille V.24 shot down a German Aviatik B.I flown by Oberleutnant Fritz von Zangen and Sergeant Wilhelm Schlichting of FFA 18 over Jonchery, near Reims on October 5, 1914. This was the first time an aircraft had been brought down with small arms fire from another aircraft.

Here’s a small bit of that first speech, with Truman talking about a program for saving food to send to hungry people in Europe.

Here’s the best James Bond (Sean Connory) dining with Dr. No and Ursula Andress:

Nobody ever found the culprit, but it inspired a rash of copycat crimes that killed quite a few people. It also led to the strengthening of tamper-proof packaging.

Da Nooz: Nooz is eclectic today because I’m writing this the evening before I leave for Boston, and have much to do.

*I have no idea what North Korea is doing, except testing the resolve of the West, and by that I mean the United States. Yesterday the DPRK fired a ballistic missile directly over Japan for the first time in five years, putting its range within U.S. territory: Guam. Perhaps they’re trying to get us to the bargaining table, but, like Iran, the DPRK IS determined to get its nuclear weapons one way or another, and I pity the fool who believes otherwise.

North Korea fired a ballistic missile without warning over Japan on Tuesday for the first time in five years, a highly provocative and reckless act that marks a significant escalation in its weapons testing program.

The missile traveled over northern Japan early in the morning, and is believed to have landed in the Pacific Ocean. The last time North Korea fired a ballistic missile over Japan was in 2017.

This marks North Korea’s 23rd missile launch this year, including the most ballistic missiles fired in a single year since leader Kim Jong Un took power in 2012. By comparison, Pyongyang conducted four tests in 2020 and eight in 2021.

Tuesday’s missile flew a distance of about 4,600 kilometers (2,858 miles), with an altitude of some 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) and a top speed reaching Mach 17 – meaning 17 times the speed of sound, according to Japanese officials.

By way of comparison, the US island territory of Guam is just 3,380 kilometers (2,100 miles) from North Korea.

Two experts told CNN these flight details suggest the missile fired was likely a Hwasong-12 – an intermediate-range ballistic missile (IRBM) last tested in January.

“This is a missile that North Korea started testing in 2017 … So it’s not really a new missile,” said Jeffrey Lewis, director of the East Asia Nonproliferation Program at CNS.

But, he added, its launch is significant because of the distance it can travel.

North Korea usually fires its missiles into waters off the coast of the Korean Peninsula – making this flight over Japan considerably more provocative, for both practical and symbolic reasons.

This kind of unannounced launch could pose risks to aircraft and ships as the missile travels down to its target, since they would have no prior warning to avoid the area.

And if the test had failed, causing the missile to fall short, it could have endangered major population areas. The missile flew over Japan’s Tohoku region, according to Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno.

Japan went on alert and the U.S. scrambled fighters in a symbolic show of power. What’s next is likely more nuclear testing (North Korea has has six such tests already, all underground). Once they get long-range missiles armed with nukes; watch out! The DPRK hates the U.S. with passion, though I would like to think that they’re not suicidal, for submarine-launched missiles by the U.S. could destroy the entire country. But then they’d take South Korea with them. Given that Kim Jong-un is as looney as his predecessors, this country is likely to be a flashpoint for war.

*I suppose this was inevitable. Trump has asked the Supreme Court—his court—to allow the “special master” (are they still using that word?) to review all the classified documents, not just the ones that the “special master” has decided need reviewing. (The other classified documents can be used by the Justice Department to see if they show that Trump was engaged in illegal activities.  Trump, of course, doesnt want the classified documents, which he declassified just by thinking about them, to be used to go after him:

As part of the 11th Circuit’s decision, the panel allowed the criminal investigation to use the seized classified documents in the ongoing investigation, something Cannon had previously barred while the special master conducted his review. Trump’s filing to the Supreme Court seeks only to reverse the appeals court’s ruling on the special master’s access to the documents, not the part of the decision concerning the investigation.

However, if the high court agreed with the Trump lawyers’ reasoning that the 11th Circuit decision weighed in on legal issues that were not properly the subject of an appeal, such a decision could restore Cannon’s prior restriction on the criminal investigation.

Trump’s lawyers argue in their filing that the appeals court decision ignores “the District Court’s broad discretion without justification. This unwarranted stay should be vacated as it impairs substantially the ongoing, time-sensitive work of the Special Master.”

The petition was filed with Justice Clarence Thomas, who oversees emergency requests from the 11th Circuit. It is likely he will seek a response from the government before the court takes any action.

Coincidence that it was Thomas, perhaps the most conservative of the judges? I think not.

*Many of us loved Linda Rondstadt when she was a singer, and, tragically, she came down with a form of Parkinson’s that’s prevented her from singing. Now, however, the NYT reports that she’s written a cookbook, or rather a combination memoir and cookbook (click book below for Amazon link)

. . .  “Feels Like Home: A Song for the Sonoran Borderlands,” published by California’s Heyday press on Oct. 4, is a way to explain why the arid land that starts in Arizona and stretches into Mexico’s west coast is her foothold in the world.

It’s a story she has told through music, and now wants to tell — as much as she can — through food. Except there is that troubling bit about cooking. She just never really learned how.

“I like being around it, but I’m not a good multitasker,” she explained one recent afternoon as we relaxed in her suite at the Arizona Inn, the historic hotel where she camps out on the increasingly rare trips she takes from her home in San Francisco to her hometown.

Besides, she said, “it’s hard to find a stove and pans in a hotel.”

Ms. Ronstadt had saved learning to cook as a retirement project.

“I didn’t know I was going to get this disease,” she said.

NYT caption: Ms. Ronstadt enjoyed a dinner made from food grown at Tucson’s Mission Garden and prepared in the home of her close childhood friend Katya Peterson and her husband, Pierre Landau.Credit…Cassidy Araiza for The New York Times

She came from a family that loved to eat, so the book includes some Ronstadt family favorites, including albóndigas, the spiced meatballs poached in water, and a quirky, modern concoction called tunapeños — essentially jalapeño peppers halved and stuffed with tuna salad.

The book devotes four pages to tortillas de agua: a Sonoran staple made with wheat flour, water, salt and a touch of lard or shortening spun into a flaky, nearly translucent tortilla larger than a steering wheel.

“They mean home,” she said.

In all, there are just 20 recipes. The rest of the book is a braid of stories about her family and the history, politics and music of the bicultural borderland that she loves.

“Think of it as a road trip with Linda Ronstadt through the part of the world where she is from and loves the most,” said Lawrence Downes, the journalist who co-wrote the book with her and who Ms. Ronstadt says did the heavy lifting.

*Speaking of ailing singers, country songbird Loretta Lynn died on Tuesday:

Loretta Lynn, the Kentucky coal miner’s daughter whose frank songs about life and love as a woman in Appalachia pulled her out of poverty and made her a pillar of country music, has died. She was 90.

In a statement provided to The Associated Press, Lynn’s family said she died Tuesday at her home in Hurricane Mills, Tennessee.

“Our precious mom, Loretta Lynn, passed away peacefully this morning, October 4th, in her sleep at home in her beloved ranch in Hurricane Mills,” the family said in a statement. They asked for privacy as they grieve and said a memorial will be announced later.

Lynn already had four children before launching her career in the early 1960s, and her songs reflected her pride in her rural Kentucky background.

As a songwriter, she crafted a persona of a defiantly tough woman, a contrast to the stereotypical image of most female country singers. The Country Music Hall of Famer wrote fearlessly about sex and love, cheating husbands, divorce and birth control and sometimes got in trouble with radio programmers for material from which even rock performers once shied away.

Her biggest hits came in the 1960s and ’70s, including “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” “You Ain’t Woman Enough,” “The Pill,” “Don’t Come Home a Drinkin’ (With Lovin’ on Your Mind),” “Rated X” and “You’re Looking at Country.” She was known for appearing in floor-length, wide gowns with elaborate embroidery or rhinestones, many created by her longtime personal assistant and designer Tim Cobb.

She also produced one of the worst rhymes in popular music:

The work we done was hardAt night we’d sleep ’cause we were tired

The whole song, in fact, is cringeworthy, but it’s still good because it’s a song about her rough life and the tune is good. Here she is singing it:

*From reader Ken:

At his rally last weekend in Michigan, Donald Trump advocated for the US to adopt a drug policy like China’s, whereby all drug dealers would be executed following a summary trial. Trump claimed that such an effective death penalty would immediately decrease the US’s crime rate by 80-85%, although he did not specify whence he had plucked this statistic:

Meanwhile in Dobrzyn, Szaron once again is too friendly for Hili

Hili: What you are doing now is a provocation.
Szaron: Yes, but it’s a friendly provocation.
In Polish:
Hili: To co teraz robisz jest prowokacją.
Szaron: Wiem, ale to jest przyjazna prowokacja.


From Divy, who said she’d totally fail this test (I would, too).

From Barry:

From Merilee. You can actually buy these doormats on etsy for $24:

God has always appeared to be a liberal (and almost an atheist, though he thinks and therefore he IS), and he’s sure no fan of Trump!

I found this one:

From Malcolm: here’s a d*g who clearly enjoys its noms:

From Luana. Despite the lack of evidence for the long-term safety of puberty blockers, and some evidence that they might be harmful, Planned Parenthoo is pushing them anyway.

From the Auschwitz Memorial: a woman who lasted two months:

Tweets from Matthew. Here’s Monday’s Physiology and Medicine Nobel Laureate, Svante Pääbo, getting tossed into a pond by way of congratulations (where’s the Gatorade?):

Matthew says that these are invasive Spotted Latern Flies: (Lycorma delicatula), not flies but “true bugs” (in the Hemiptera)

This is one lucky bug (and yes, it is a true bug).

23 thoughts on “Wednesday: Hili dialogue

  1. Trump has asked the Supreme Court—his court—to allow the “special master” (are they still using that word?) to review all the classified documents, not just the ones that the “special master” has decided need reviewing … Trump, of course, doesnt want the classified documents, which he declassified just by thinking about them, to be used to go after him

    If, as Tr*mp claims, he has declassified the documents in question, why is a special master needed? If Tr*mp insists a special master is needed, is that not an admission that he has not declassified the documents in question?

    1. There is but one legitimate reason for a government document to be classified — that the public dissemination of its contents would pose a risk to the national security of the United States. And there is but one legitimate reason for a previously classified document to be declassified — that the public dissemination of its contents no longer poses a risk to the national security.

      Trump has run around claiming (on his failing social-media platform, in tv interviews, and in personal appearances at rallies) that he declassified the documents seized from Mar-a-Lago, the classification markings they bore at the time of their seizure notwithstanding — by, I dunno, telepathy? Transubstantiation? Astral projection? But his lawyers have studiously avoided repeating Trump’s claims in court.

      Trump has also claimed that the FBI planted documents at Mar-a-Lago during the execution of the court-ordered search warrant. But, again, Trump’s legal team has avoided repeating that claim in court where it counts. The special master selected by Trump’s lawyers — senior district court judge Raymond Dearie — not long ago issued an order compelling Trump and his legal team to put up or shut up by filing a sworn declaration specifying which documents Trump was claiming were planted by the FBI. But Judge Aileen Canon stepped in to spare her boy the Donald from having to drink from that poisoned chalice.

      Were there any truth to Trump’s claim that the he had in fact declassified the documents at issue, this whole matter could be brought to a much quicker conclusion simply by making the disputed documents public (since, by definition, there would no longer exist any reason to keep them secret).

      1. Isn’t the point that all the documents he took with him were declared “private” by him? Maybe that’s the reason the public isn’t supposed to see them. (I don’t really keep up with this, so I could be egregiously wrong.)

        1. Trump can declare these documents any damn thing he wants. But the documents at issue were plainly generated during the course of his presidency and, as such, come within the express statutory jurisdiction of National Archives and Records Administration.

          There is no feasible scenario under which such documents can be deemed Donald Trump’s private property.

          Everyone knows this, including Trump’s lawyers. Their only play is to try to delay the inevitable for as long as possible.

  2. Coincidence that it was Thomas, perhaps the most conservative of the judges? I think not.

    Each of the nine SCOTUS justices sits as the “circuit justice” for one or more of 12 federal circuits (11 enumerated, plus the DC Circuit. There’s a 13th circuit of limited, specialized jurisdiction — the Federal Circuit — but damned if I know what it does. Something to do with patents and trademarks, I think).

    Anyway, Clarence Thomas is the circuit justice for the 11th Circuit, comprising Florida, Georgia, and Alabama, so all emergency petitions to SCOTUS from that region automatically go to him in the first instance. You can see the circuit assignments for the nine SCOTUS justices here. It’s common for a circuit justice either to issue or deny an emergency stay, then immediately refer the matter to the Court sitting as a whole for consideration on the merits. Since the circuits are geographically established, a petitioner has no opportunity to engage in justice-shopping when filing an emergency petition with a circuit justice.

    1. I’m betting Thomas will issue an emergency stay. Of all the strategies for securing uncontested power that the RP has pursued for the past several decades taking over the SC with their stooges is looking to be the most potent. I am not confident that our justice systems can withstand this.

      1. I wouldn’t deign to know what Thomas will do. (I think trying to enter the mind of Clarence Thomas is a strange and scary exercise, at least for anybody except, possibly, his wingnut wife.)

        I do, however, share your concern over the direction SCOTUS is heading.

        But, w/r/t the specific situation at issue, my observation has been that while federal judicial appointees remain loyal after their appointments to the judicial philosophy and ideology that got them a seat on the bench (though they may shift a bit to the left or right over the course of their tenure), they do not (with the possible exception of Judge Aileen Canon) continue to harbor allegiance to the individual president who appointed them. This is one of the great benefits of the lifetime appointment afforded federal judges by Article III of the US constitution.

        I think this was borne out recently when two Trump appointees were on the panel of the Eleventh Circuit that slapped down Judge Canon’s order prohibiting the Justice Department from proceeding with its criminal investigation into Trump’s possession of classified documents. It was also borne out by the numerous Trump appointees who participated in slapping down the bogus election-fraud claims in the 60-odd cases Team Trump brought trying to set aside the results of the 2020 presidential election. And, if we go back a bit further, it was borne out by three Nixon appointees joining the unanimous Court that ruled against Nixon in the Watergate tapes case and by Clinton’s two appointees joining the unanimous Court that ruled against Clinton in the Paula Jones case.

        I don’t think there’s much chance that the Supremes will interfere with the Justice Department’s criminal investigation of Donald Trump. After all, the conservatives on the Court all ascribe to the unitary executive theory. And few things would be more inimical to the unitary executive theory than prohibiting a division of the executive branch (in this instance, the DoJ) from gaining access to documents generated by the executive branch itself.

        1. I always look forward to your comments on issues like this Ken. Actually, I always look forward to your comments period. I sure hope you’re right on this one, that the odds are not small that Thomas won’t issue a stay. Normally I’d be confident in your assessment, but Thomas’ behavior seems to be so unusual as to defy precedent and reason. Besides, if he doesn’t issue a stay his wife might make him sleep on the couch.

          1. Thomas may issue a temporary stay. But he will immediately refer the case to the full Court for consideration on the merits, and I’m reasonably confident the Court would lift any stay in short order.

            I suspect that having this case fall to Clarence Thomas in the first instance is Chief Justice John Roberts’s worst nightmare, given his concern over the public’s rapidly receding confidence in the Court’s impartiality.

            1. “…given his concern over the public’s rapidly receding confidence in the Court’s impartiality.”

              Do you really think he’s concerned, or is he clutching pearls? And even if he is concerned, there’s nothing he can do about it; he’s just along for the ride at this point.

    1. As a consequence of the fact that it was a satellite state of the Soviet Union from the 1920s up to the collapse of the SU.

  3. For bonus points, who was Harry Truman’s food ambassador to Europe in ’47?

    Also, those spotted lanternflys seem to like to congregate on warm masonry these days. My guess is that this is because they’ve come to the end of the line, and also that the females have expended a lot of their body mass in laying eggs.

  4. I just looked up American Prayer Centre. They have

    Make America Godly Again. Prayers so powerful, they were Retruthed by President Trump

    on their landing page 🙂

    Retruthed? Are they serious? Or is it all meant to be a joke? I am skeptical but, either way, it is very funny.

    I had to look up ‘retruthed’ as well:

    To take a debunked or discredited former truth, or a truth that was found to be inaccurate, and then retool it using new information, delivering it as the new truth, doing so as though the old truth never existed.

    Confusing stuff!

    1. Donald Trump’s sad, failing social-media platform is called “Truth Social.” The platform’s version of a “tweet” is called a “truth.” A “Retruth” is the platform’s version of a “retweet.”

      1. My prediction: once Musk owns Tweeter, he’ll allow Trump back on, and the failing Truth Social will be abandoned.

      2. Thanks! And good heavens! Even though it occurred to me that ‘Retruth’ sounded a bit like ‘retweet’ and was appropriate given the man, I did not make the connection with Truth Social. Wikipedia says it right here. Amusing. They should get themselves a church, write themselves a bible, and find themselves a Jesus 🙂

  5. > all drug dealers would be executed following a summary trial

    I wish people had a better grasp on the Constitution, especially the enumerated powers. The closest power that the Constitution grants Congress is the power to regulate interstate commerce (Article I Section 8). People have twisted that into all kinds of bizarre knots; if you grow something and give it gratis to your next door neighbor, it is neither interstate nor trade – but it supplants an transaction that could have happened via interstate commerce, so the federal government feels entitled to intervene. It’s funny how the New Right always pretends to be constitutionalist – until it’s inconvenient for them.

    But, hey, if they unrepeal the 18th Amendment and add include other drugs, then the War on Drugs would become constitutional.

  6. If Trump were even slightly intelligent, he wouldn’t choose evil China as an example but Singapore, and authoritarian state more popular in the West. There, reportedly, one can choose between lifetime imprisonment plus caning and the death penalty for drug dealing. Criminology says that crime that is financially motivated, such as drug dealing, can be prevented by draconian punishment, and Singapore seems to be a case in point. (If one tried to implement such a system in the current US, there would be mayhem of the worst kind because in the US climate, this would be interpreted by many as something close to genocide of the black population.) But I think Trump errs when he thinks that most violent crime in the US is drug turf war related. A lot of violent crime in the US is the classic man beats or stabs wife or ex wife/girlfriend stuff and/or results from untreated mental illness or personal insults/quarrels only tangentially related to drugs, if at all. Deterrence doesn’t work with such crimes.
    Unfortunately, we now have real problems with very well organized gang crime in Europe, just one example: (the illustration above the article is deceptive, these are by and large Arab led gangs). You can only do so much with legalization, because if the drug business is taken from these people, they will just use their other ways of illegal wealth generation more. And a few years of juvenile detention for the young family/clan/gang members chosen as the fall guys, like in this case here, certainly will not do the job.

  7. The story about Hitler and the geese is a version of a story that probably predates Hitler:
    “It is all because of the bicycle riders and the Jews.”
    “Why the bicycle riders?”
    “Why the Jews?”

  8. Re:

    “The work we done was hard
    At night we’d sleep ’cause we were tired”

    I listened to this twice; she pronounces “tired” as “tarred.”

    Having been born and having grown up in the Appalachian South and immersed in its dialect and idioms, and having heard the locals speak on a daily basis, I hope I don’t seem to be too much (as Appalachian folks put it) “putting on airs” in presuming to vouch for the accuracy of her pronunciation of “tired.” As far as those folks are concerned, the words reasonably rhyme when pronounced.

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