Will You Shut Up, Man?

“The debate was a shouty disaster. Chris Wallace was utterly disgraceful as a moderator, constantly letting Trump interrupt Biden and allowing him to spout gross and anti-democratic lies about the legitimacy of the election. Biden got tongue tied and let himself be put on the defensive a few times, especially about riots in Portland, Ore., and his son Hunter. He missed several opportunities to bring up the generals who have spoken out against Trump. But I can’t imagine that anyone not already supporting Trump could be won over by his sneering insults, unhinged ranting and conspiratorial non-sequiturs. Ultimately, talking about this in terms of who “won” seems like a category error. Trump used his massive platform to urge his supporters to intimidate people at the polls. Biden was occasionally ineffectual. One was a bullying fascist, the other an avatar, however imperfect, of civic responsibility. There should be no false equivalency here.”
Michelle Goldberg, columnist, The New York Times

I didn’t think Biden should have agreed to debate Trump in the first place, knowing Trump would turn it into a shitshow, and didn’t want to watch. But I did, and Trump did, and that’s the last Trump/Biden debate that’ll darken my TV.

I hope Biden and his campaign team have learned there’s no value in further debates — no value for Biden, no value for American voters — and withdraw from the others they originally agreed to.

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I hope I’m not the only observer left with a sense of unease over Trump’s attack on the voting process and the way he encouraged his thugs supporters to invade polling places on election day to intimidate Democratic Party voters. That, and his call-out to the Proud Boys and other white supremacist groups to “stand by,” which they immediately took as a “go” signal from the racist-in-chief.

Tell you what I will watch, though: next week’s vice presidential debate between Mike Pence and Kamala Harris. I only wish there were a way we could see Kamala debate Trump!

When Polly wrecked her car Sunday evening, I called a tow company to haul it to our regular mechanic’s garage, located a few blocks west of the scene of the crime. Twenty minutes later a TPD patrol car rolled up. I explained the situation to a young, basically nice cop, who agreed to give me 15 minutes before calling the city’s contractor to tow it to the impound lot. Polly’s car was, after all, blocking the turn lane of a major intersection, so I understood. But OMG what a hassle that would have been, having to pay the impound fee the next day just to have to pay again to have the car towed someplace else. We lucked out, though — the tow truck I’d called showed up a few minutes later.

All I could think of, as I tried to sort everything out, was how accidents like these are absolute show-stopping disasters for the working poor: towing fees, impound fees, tickets, late payment penalties, car repairs, and oh by the way how are you gonna get the kids to daycare, never mind your job, now?

Our mechanic runs a gas station with an attached four-bay garage, and his clientele leans senior … people like us who were raised in a sort of Norman Rockwell era of trusted neighborhood gas station mechanics. We’d heard he sometimes tries to help some of his older customers sell cars they can no longer drive, so when he told us Monday morning Polly’s car wasn’t worth fixing, we asked if he had any leads, and as it happened he did: a 1999 Lexus sedan he’d been maintaining for an regular customer. I drove it yesterday: it has over 100,000 miles on the clock but seems in perfect condition; tight running and solid, new brakes & tires, loads of luxury features (all working).

We’re going to sell the old car for scrap and try to get a good price on the Lexus, and if we get it that’ll be it for Polly — no more help from Mom & Dad, harsh though it may sound. Girl’s 45 years old, for goodness’ sake, and has yet to buy her first car. Too bad she wasn’t born a Trump, eh?

© 2020, Paul Woodford. All rights reserved.


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