Diary 220

Saturday, October 24th

Today was Yoga day, led by two very limber grandkids (5 and 7) and a suitable video. The kids were enchanted. I confess I had trouble with a few of the poses – Standing Pretzel was hard – but I also did fairly well with Resting Marmot, even if some people think that particular pose looks a lot like Middle-Aged-Dude-Lying-Down-for-a-Nap pose. I can’t think why we haven’t done this before. It looks as if it’ll be a regular fixture.

The world seems to beholding its breath until this election is over – a mere 11 days to go now. Certainly Boris Johnson thinks the result will guide him in his future idiocies to be inflicted on the UK, especially the no-deal Brexit decision.

As for ourselves, the early ballots have recorded over 6 million votes in California alone and probably the highest voter turn out since 1908. Despite all the attempts at voter suppression voters are at least turning out for once. It could be that all the ‘president’s’ attempts to disenfranchise us will back fire. He may have overplayed his hand or (to use and English phrase) he’s over-egged the custard. We shall see.  If you haven’t already, VOTE.

Diary 219

Diary 219

Friday, October 23rd

The hot topic of debate here today is what the grandchildren should dress up as at Halloween. The older girls want to be a witch and her  accompanying black cat, with the added proviso that there should be plenty of sparkly and pink things, and a broom. And that it shouldn’t be too scary for their twin sisters (aged 2). Alas, they also want me to dress up – to be scary but not too scary, and yet still be me. I wonder how Halloween will play out this year. Do we leave a bowl of candies on the step and keep our social distancing? 

However we choose to do it I feel it’s important that we should make an effort. It’s one of those markers of the year, an acknowledgement of change. Things wouldn’t be the same if we let it slip.

Diary 218

Thursday, October 22nd

Biden and the ‘president’ had a debate – although I’m not sure that anyone can actually ‘debate’ with the raving egoist who is currently president. Biden came out the clear winner, though.

Goldman Sachs.  Remember them?  One of those banks that were ‘too big to fail’ and were bailed out at high speed by a beleaguered Obama. Them. They just made a deal for $2.9 billion (yes, Billion) because of their part in the on going 1MDB bank scandal.  Money laundering, basically, and therefore drugs and illegal armaments were behind it. The thing is, this scandal has already revealed trillions of dollars of wrong-doing, so they can afford to throw away a couple of billion, really….

The planet still needs saving.

Diary 217

Wednesday, October 21st

A wet day here in Boston, but 200 million miles away Nasa’s Osiris-Rex probe was able to catch up to asteroid Bennu and remove some fragments. Since the asteroid is merely 530 yards wide, that represents an astonishing feat for Science.  Science, notice.  That thing our ‘president’ disrespects whenever possible, and claims doesn’t matter. Yes, that Science.

Of course some science isn’t that great.  Purdue Pharma has just agreed to plea guilty and to settle its OxyContin suit for $8 billion. Oh. Wait – the science was fine; it was the marketing that was criminal. The drug was never properly tested, and then not properly monitored after it was introduced. 

We are such an astonishing country, such an amazing collection of people. How come we keep getting so many things so right and then do the wrong thing?

Diary 216

Tuesday, October 20th

In yet another reversal the ‘president’, who damned the EU for levying a $5 billion fine against Google for monopoly, has now launched, in great haste, his own investigation of Google for, wait for it — monopoly practices. If one has the memory span of a goldfish I suppose this doesn’t matter. But most of us are a little more aware than that. It does tell us, though, what he thinks of us.

He’s also launching an investigation into the Bidens, father and son. Presumably he hopes we’ll forget all about Amy Coney Barrett in the flap.

And what about that stimulus package?  Where did that go?

Diary 215

Monday, October 19th

Reports are now emerging that Moscow planned to use cyber-attacks to disrupt the Tokyo Olympics – something that was prevented by the necessity to postpone the Games until Covid had passed. Why would the Russians do that?  Well, because the Olympic committees had rejected Russian participation because of doping concerns, for one. And, two, because Putin doesn’t like losing. And we doubt that Russia interfered with the 2016 elections in the US? And we think they won’t do it again? 

Luckily we have a fair weight of opinion that cannot be denied. The people really will decide this next election, despite all the attempts to suppress us.

Also today, Fauci has finally been turned into the scapegoat for Covid’s effects. The ‘president’ declared him, Fauci, to be the ‘disaster’. This is the way he routinely treats his friends, so it comes as no surprise. The surprise is that he has any friends left.

Diary 214

Diary 214

Sunday, October 18th

A day of women’s marches against The Republicans and the ‘president’ – that was what we saw on Saturday. I’m not sure why the news reached me late, or why it wasn’t on the front pages everywhere, but it’s worth repeating. 

Also this just in – an obituary for a lady had this request at the end: ‘In lieu of flowers Georgia preferred that you do not vote for Trump’. 

Diary 213

Saturday, October 17th

It might simply be my imaginings, but it may also be true that I detect a lifting of the mood in this country. The election approaches and it seems likely that the ‘president’ and his colleagues will be handed their pink slips. Or possibly handcuffs. Those long lines at the polls are people waiting to vote him out, people who are outraged or suffering or who have seen through the lies. Republican politicians are distancing themselves from the White House (what took you so long??).  Facebook has even rejected 2.2 million ads of voter-obstruction content.

Post-election the USA will still be a mess, but now we can get to work on setting things right. The pity is it didn’t have to be this way. It didn’t have to be this bad – Covid, racism, the economy, the environment, corruption, Russian interference. It’ll take a long time for the rest of the world to trust us again as anything except a banana republic.  We can work together towards that.

Diary 212

Diary 212

Friday, October 16th

Nature has a way of sending us reminders. The first picture shows a plant pushing through the concrete of a wall, and lets me know that some things can never be kept down.  Like Democracy. The second shows a rose – a Queen Elizabeth if I’m not mistaken – garnished with rain. Even when it pours some things emerge more beautiful, more vital than before. Like Democracy.

Diary 211

Thursday, October 15th

The ‘president’ and Joe Biden faced off at what the papers call ‘dueling town halls’ – and one wonders whether there are two different planets under discussion, here. At least that’s what I gathered from the ‘president’s’ strange statements.

My friends in Europe tell me that this isn’t just about the USA. It’s about the whole world, and they feel this acutely.

My hope is that it is becoming increasingly obvious, even to some die-hard Republicans, that their leader has to go, and soon. There’s serious work to do for the planet. I don’t think delay is a sensible notion.