[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

Hours after Sen. Susan Collins said it was “very difficult for me to envision a scenario where I would end up voting for this bill,” Republican leadership released a new version of the Graham-Cassidy Affordable Care Act repeal bill trying to bribe Collins and other undecided or opposed Republicans.

The Cassidy-Graham legislation would overhaul the ACA by lumping together the current law's spending on insurance subsidies and expanded Medicaid and redistributing it to states in the form of block grants. Alaska would get 3 percent more funding between 2020 and 2026 than under current law, and Maine would get 43 percent more funding during that time period, according to a summary obtained by The Post.

Topher Spiro of the Center for American Progress issued a caution on the numbers being reported, though:

x

1: Last night Graham/Cassidy released their own state estimates. Even they show Alaska and West Virginia still losing federal funding!!!

— Topher Spiro (@TopherSpiro) September 25, 2017

x

4: First, and most obvious, ANY numbers released by Graham/Cassidy should be treated with great skepticism. They've been misleading before.

— Topher Spiro (@TopherSpiro) September 25, 2017

Additionally, Jonathan Cohn reports that protections for pre-existing conditions would be weakened even more than in the previous version of the bill:

Under the newly revised bill, states would have an even easier time junking rules that prohibit insurers from charging higher premiums to people with cancer, diabetes, or other medical conditions. They could also waive existing rules limiting out-of-pocket expenses, or setting minimum levels of coverage.

To do this, state officials wouldn’t even have to apply for a formal waiver. All they would have to do is file a plan explaining their proposal, and why officials believe it would provide “adequate and affordable” coverage for people with prior medical problems.

That should be a giant red flag for any Republican senator who’s unsure of their vote—even if the bill sends extra money to their state as a bribe for their vote. Funding aside (and that’s a big aside), this bill will destroy a lot of lives.

Keep hitting those phone lines. Call your senators at (202) 224-3121 and tell them YOU ARE WATCHING! (After you call, please tell us how it went.)

[syndicated profile] balloon_juice_feed

Posted by David Anderson

Cassidy-Graham 2.0 came out last night.  There are some major policy changes in it:

  • No need for states to submit waivers
    • States must submit a plan
    • Plan does not define “Affordable” or “Adequate” or “pre-exisiting condition”
    • No specification of consequences or recourse if the state plan that was submitted failed to meet its objectives
  • States define their own Essential Health Benefits, out of pocket maximums and community rating
  • Risk pools can be split

There are a bunch of political provisions. Several are aimed at shoveling money to Alaska, but those are not the important provisions. The policy matters more.

The bill sponsors also released their estimates of state effects. They use magical math.

Who cares about a trillion dollars among friends?

Transitioning Medicaid from a shared responsibility program to a program where the state bears the entire risk of crisis is the most basic element of the entire series of Republican bills. This is what will dive state governors crazy as their budgets can’t handle a counter-cyclical shock or a hurricane or an infectious disease outbreak without a federal backstop.

You know what to do; call the senate, call your governor and call your Rep.

[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

The Daily Kos Elections Morning Digest is compiled by David Nir, Jeff Singer, Stephen Wolf, and Carolyn Fiddler, with additional contributions from David Jarman, Steve Singiser, Daniel Donner, James Lambert, David Beard, and Arjun Jaikumar.

Leading Off

WA-08: Will the fourth time be the charm? Republican state Sen. Dino Rossi announced on Thursday that he'll make his fourth bid for higher office next year, this time to succeed retiring GOP Rep. Dave Reichert in the 8th Congressional District. About four-fifths of the district covers the outer suburbs on the eastern edge of the greater Seattle-Tacoma area, while the other one-fifth includes more rural territory east of the Cascades. Rossi is a commercial real estate developer who has served in the state Senate on and off again since his initial 1996 victory, with his most recent stint following an appointment last year to replace a Republican incumbent who died.​

Campaign Action

​Rossi was Team Red's nominee for Senate in 2010 and governor in 2008 and 2004, but lost all three times in heavily contested races. His first bid for governor was for an open seat against Democrat Christine Gregoire, which saw him fall shy by just 129 votes after an ugly and drawn-out recount during which Rossi had unsuccessfully fought for a new election to take place. He lost their 2008 rematch by 53-47, but considerably outran John McCain's 57-40 defeat in that year's presidential race. Rossi then challenged longtime Democratic Sen. Patty Murray in 2010, but fell short of victory by 52-48.

Although Rossi failed to win at the statewide level in those three contests, he carried the 8th District each time, including a solid 55-45 edge over Murray here in 2010. This seat backed Hillary Clinton 48-45 and Obama by 50-48 in 2012, but it's no stranger to supporting down-ballot Republicans like Rossi. For instance, Democratic Gov. Jay Inslee lost it by 54-46 last year even as he was winning statewide by that same margin. Rossi will consequently be a formidable candidate if he ends up as the GOP's standard-bearer.

Cheers and Jeers: Monday

Sep. 25th, 2017 05:15 am
[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

From the GREAT STATE OF MAINE…

Unnecessary Censorship

As long as there have been books, there have been meddlers trying to ban them, and American meddlers are among the most obnoxious, Jesus-freaked, and delicate-fee-fee’d in the civilized world. There were 323 cases of attempted book banning in 2016 (over 11,600 over the last 35 years), which is why an important group has designated this Banned Books Week:

The Banned Books Week Coalition is a national alliance of diverse organizations joined by a commitment to increase awareness of the annual celebration of the freedom to read. Banned Books Week was launched in 1982 in response to a sudden surge in the number of challenges to books in schools, bookstores and libraries.

The Coalition seeks to engage various communities and inspire participation in Banned Books Week through education, advocacy, and the creation of programming about the problem of book censorship. The 2017 celebration will be held September 24 - September 30.

For this year’s celebration, the coalition of organizations that sponsors Banned Books Week will emphasize the importance of the First Amendment, which guarantees our inherent right to read.

The top 5 banned books last year were (cue the sound of conservative Christians grinding their teeth): This One Summer written by Mariko and Jillian Tamaki, Drama by Raina Telgemeier, George by Alex Gino, I Am Jazz by Jessica Herthel, Jazz Jennings, and Shelagh McNicholas, and Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan. Kudos to you all, you’re definitely worth reading.

So far the Dotard administration hasn’t called for any book bannings or burnings. But give it time…it’s early.

Cheers and Jeers starts below the fold... [Swoosh!!] RIGHTNOW! [Gong!!]

Daily Kos Radio is LIVE at 9 AM ET!

Sep. 25th, 2017 05:01 am
[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

Yes, The Donald was a raving lunatic this weekend. No, I don’t believe he’s actually smart enough to try to distract us from anything with his idiocy. I mostly believe what George Takei believes on this score:

x

Trump isn't starting this NFL fight to distract us. He's doing it to distract himself. He hates policy, diplomacy. This is his comfort zone.

— George Takei (@GeorgeTakei) September 24, 2017

Anyway, this is week 36 of The Presidential Apprentice, and, well, the man’s not learning. Meanwhile, the Trump-Russia heat is still on, and rising. We’ll catch up with the weekend’s shenanigans, of course. And then we’ll get down to business.

Listen right here at 9:00 AM ET!

Podcasts! They’re hip! They’re hot! Everyone’s got one! But Daily Kos has had one since slightly after that point at which you would have been able to say that we had one before it was cool. Only we do ours over a live stream, every weekday morning from 9-11 ET. So the news is as fresh as the morning dew! Delivered and interpreted for you by David Waldman, Greg Dworkin, Joan McCarter, and even Armando.

We think you’ll like it so much, you’ll even help support its continued production, with monthly donations via Patreon, or one-time contributions via Square Cash.

Not ready to face the world that early? Unsure whether you’re ready to donate your hard-earned cash? We’ve also got these handy-dandy record-o-matical things, like the one below, featuring our most recent LIVE show! At Daily Kos, it’s always free to try before you buy! (I think! Usually, anyway!)

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YouTube | iTunes | LibSyn | Keep us on the air! Donate via Patreon or Square Cash

Friday, end of the week, time for David Waldman to bring us articles and topics to ponder over the weekend. Ponder briskly, as the weekend might be getting busy, and short. We all know Donald Trump is a dotard, we just didn’t think of that until now. Thanks Un! Trump’s also a 멍청한 아기 , so he might just dote us to armageddon thanks to his tweet war. Also—Donald alienated those Nambi-Gambi-Zambians. Is Trump’s defining trait “Idiocy”? “Insanity”? “Racism”? A tough call, but Armando chooses “crazy”. He and David search for a rule or a standard that would ever really matter in the healthcare repeal reconciliation process. Why listen to experts? Why obey the constitution? Not if winning is the only Gop goal, and it is. Tom Price took a private jet to South Dakota to give a speech on wasteful spending. Facebook failed to protect 30 million users from having their data harvested by the Trump campaign. Trump still uses targeted “dark ads” on Facebook to lie to the followers led easiest by lies. Mark Zuckerberg’s opinion is evolving.

(Thanks to Scott Anderson for all show summaries! Please help me pay him more!)

Need more info on how to listen? Find it below the fold.

[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

If you are calling your Senators to vote no on the Grassidy health bill, remind them to work on this:

WaPo:

‘If anyone can hear us … help.’ Puerto Rico’s mayors describe widespread devastation from Hurricane Maria

A janitor stopped [San Juan mayor] Cruz with a request on Friday: “Tell the world we’re here,” he said, Cruz recounted. “Tell everyone we’re fighting. Tell everyone that can listen that we are going to make it.”

With her voice faltering, Cruz echoed that cry: “If anyone can hear us . . . help.”

x

Humanitarian disaster unfolding: Millions of Americans w/o power, potable water. Now our most urgent crisis. What's the plan WH? Congress? https://t.co/Sz4aXUhMQt

— Atul Gawande (@Atul_Gawande) September 24, 2017

Here’s a round-up of some of the protests, including the Steelers staying in the locker room and some Dolphins wearing “black T-shirts supporting free agent quarterback Colin Kaepernick during pregame warm-ups”.

x

The underlying cleavage in American politics is revealing itself: hierarchy, punishment, social control. Not big govt/small gov. https://t.co/6QmUn4SIl9

— Julia Azari (@julia_azari) September 24, 2017

x

Central fault line in US politics (& life) is between those optimistic about racial/cultural/eco change & those who feel threatened https://t.co/zbAeSX85Lh

— Ronald Brownstein (@RonBrownstein) September 24, 2017
[syndicated profile] balloon_juice_feed

Posted by Anne Laurie

Jack Ohman via Gocomics.com
.

Per the Washington Post:

The Republican senators at the forefront of the latest effort to undo the Affordable Care Act plan to release a revised version of their bill Monday sending more health-care dollars to the states of key holdouts, as hardening resistance from several GOP senators left their proposal on the verge of collapse.

According to a summary obtained by The Washington Post, Sens. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) and Lindsey O. Graham (R-S.C.) will propose giving Alaska and Maine more funding than initially offered. Those states are represented by Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski (Alaska) and Susan Collins (Maine), who have expressed concerns about the bill but have yet to say how they would vote…

The plan was distributed among Republicans late Sunday, with party leaders just one “no” vote away from defeat and as Republican senators from across the political spectrum were distancing themselves from the prior draft…

Although the CBO plans to release a “preliminary assessment” early this week, officials there have said they will not be able to provide estimates of how Cassidy-Graham would affect insurance premiums or the number of people with coverage “for at least several weeks.” Trump and McConnell are trying to bring the bill to a vote by the end of this week to take advantage of a procedural rule allowing the plan to pass with just 51 votes.

It remained far from clear Sunday that they could get close to that number…

Walt Handelsman via Gocomics.com
.

On the other hand, if we can prevent this latest attempt…

***********

Apart from the Repubs’ never-ending efforts to make everybody elses’ lives worse, what’s on the agenda as we start a fresh week?

On the Road and In Your Backyard

Sep. 25th, 2017 09:00 am
[syndicated profile] balloon_juice_feed

Posted by Alain the site fixer

Good Morning All,

This weekday feature is for Juicers who are are on the road, traveling, or just want to share a little bit of their world via stories and pictures. So many of us rise each morning, eager for something beautiful, inspiring, amazing, subtle, of note, and our community delivers – a view into their world, whether they’re far away or close to home – pictures with a story, with context, with meaning, sometimes just beauty. By concentrating travel updates and tips here, it’s easier for all of us to keep up or find them later.

So please, speak up and share some of your adventures and travel news here, and submit your pictures using our speedy, secure form. You can submit up to 7 pictures at a time, with an overall description and one for each picture.

You can, of course, send an email with pictures if the form gives you trouble, or if you are trying to submit something special, like a zipped archive or a movie. If your pictures are already hosted online, then please email the links with your descriptions.

For each picture, it’s best to provide your commenter screenname, description, where it was taken, and date. It’s tough to keep everyone’s email address and screenname straight, so don’t assume that I remember it “from last time”. More and more, the first photo before the fold will be from a commenter, so making it easy to locate the screenname when I’ve found a compelling photo is crucial.

Have a wonderful day, and enjoy the pictures!

 

Today, pictures from valued commenter 🐾BillinGlendaleCA.

Angels Flight
(The Shortest Railroad in the World)

In the late 19th century and early 20th century Bunker Hill was the fashionable residential neighborhood towering to the west of the downtown Los Angeles as it grew south from the Spanish plaza. As with other neighborhoods of Los Angeles at the time there were steps to get people up to their mansions. In 1901 Colonel J.W. Eddy figured he could make some coin extracting some coin from these wealthy folk by building a narrow gauge funicular railway up Bunker Hill at the corner of 3rd and Hill streets It was next to the newly opened 3rd Street Tunnel(it runs under Bunker Hill from Hill Street to Figueroa Street), crossing over Clay Street before reaching Olive Street at the top of it’s run. It seems that short rail lines were all the rage at the time since 1905 saw the opening of the little remembered Court Flight between Broadway and Hill streets in the current Civic Center(across from the red brick courthouse). Angels Flight has two rail cars, Sinai and Olivet, that operate in opposing directions and originally moved on a single cable. Angels Flight operated at this location for 68 years seeing the decline of the neighborhood as the wealthy moved further west to neighborhood such as Angelino Heights and mid-Wilshire. The stately mansions turned into boarding houses and hotels. In the postwar era, the city decided that they needed to redevelop Bunker Hill and Angels Flight was closed in May of 1969. I was fortunate to ride Angels Flight in it’s original location on a Cub Scout trip to downtown in early 1969. The cars, the ticket plaza at the top and the entrance arch at the bottom were put into storage for the “brief period”(2 years they said at the time) while they relocated the tracks a half of a block to the south. This “brief period” turned out to be 27 years. Angels Flight re-opened in 1996 and instead of transporting the wealthy to their stately mansions it now transported office workers from their offices in the skyscrapers that replaced the stately mansions. In 2001 there was a serious accident on the railroad that killed an elderly German tourist and led to Angeles Flight being closed once again. It reopened in 2008 to only have another accident in 2013(this time without any deaths or major injuries) close it down again. It recently reopened on August 31, 2017 so I decided to take a spin on it.

Upper plaza and ticket window.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

This is were you buy your ticket for the trip, if you riding up the hill you pay here after you ride up. It’s the same building that served this purpose from 1901 to 1969 though it did change a bit over the years. The cars and the stations received a fresh coat of paint as part of the latest renovation.

Inside one of the cars.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

This is inside one of the cars(I’m not sure if it’s Sinai or Olivet) looking through the car and down the tracks from the top.

About half way down.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

This is about half way down the hill and you can see that the tracks move out to the side to let the ascending car move past.

About 3/4er’s the way down.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

Here, the other car has passed and both cars are making the transition from the duel track to the single track.

At the Hill street station.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

This picture really gives a good idea how long the railroad is, with the car I’m in at the bottom and the other car at the top.

Station at Hill Street.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

This is the Hill Street station and is right across from the Grand Central Market where you can get some nice eats.

Car waiting to go up.

Taken on 2017-09-07

Los Angeles, CA

Here is a car at the Hill Street Station waiting to go up. The concrete buildings in the background is where Angels Flight originally was.

 

Thank you so much 🐾BillinGlendaleCA, do send us more when you can.

 

Travel safely everybody, and do share some stories in the comments, even if you’re joining the conversation late. Many folks confide that they go back and read old threads, one reason these are available on the Quick Links menu.

 

One again, to submit pictures: Use the Form or Send an Email

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Posted by Altaira

From time-to-time you, the fans, email TORn about events of interest to other fans of J.R.R. Tolkien and/or Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit movies. As a service to our readers, we decided to created this new feature: a listing of upcoming events to keep everyone apprised of where they can hook-up and commiserate with other fans, learn a thing or two, or just plain enjoy the fandom that we’ve all come to know and love.  From Howard Shore concerts in Paris, to fan get-togethers in Kentucky and South Carolina, to exhibitions in Staffordshire, U.K., it’s all listed here! The list will be updated periodically as past events drop off and future events are added. If you know of an upcoming event, please let us know either in the comments section of this story, or by emailing spymaster@theonering.net. – TORn, ‘Together in Tolkien’

 

September 27 to October 1, 2017Harrodsburg, KY, U.S.A: A Long Expected Party.

This unique even is held at the Shaker Village of Pleasant Hill, which is located in the heart of the Bluegrass Region near Harrodsburg, Kentucky. This Tolkien-themed convention includes classes, panels, workshops, banquets and activities, with many activities being held outdoors.  This year’s panelists feature well-known Tolkien scholars Dr. Amy H. Sturgis and Dr. Michael D.C. Drout. For more information: http://alep-ky.us/index.html

 

Now through November 11, 2017Tamworth, Staffordshire, U.K.: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire exhibition

From The Tolkien Society website: The exhibition focuses on the time Tolkien spent in Staffordshire during the First World War. Visitors will be able to explore the writings, poetry, and artwork Tolkien wrote in the county, as well as learn more about life for soldiers in Staffordshire during the Great War. Copies of original artwork, of domestic scenes and landscapes drawn by Tolkien in 1918 in Staffordshire, will be on display as will photographs specially loaned by the Tolkien Estate and Bodleian Library. For more information: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/events/j-r-r-tolkien-in-staffordshire-exhibition/

 

September 29 & 30, 2017Geneva, Switzerland: The Return of the King Live to Projection – Howard Shore’s Academy Award®-winning Score performed live to the epic motion picture by symphony orchestra, chorus and soloists

From howardshore.com: the climactic chapter in Howard Shore’s music for The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King gathers all that has come before and sets it charging relentlessly towards conclusion. Each character theme, each cultural style, every motif associated with the precepts of Tolkien’s work must reach the destination set before it in the previous two scores. For more information and to buy tickets: http://osr.ch/programme-billetterie/saison/2017-2018/le-seigneur-des-anneaux/2692

 

October 5 to 8, 2017 New York, NY, U.S.A.: New York Comic Con – Alas, TORn won’t have an official presence at NYCC this year. However, SideShow will have a booth sure to have something for LOTR fans, and our friend, and talented Tolkien artist, Donato Giancola will be appearing. For more information: http://www.newyorkcomiccon.com/

 

October 7, 2017Paris, France: The Music of Howard Shore – featuring The Hobbit: Four movements for Symphony Orchestra, and music from The Lord of the Rings – special guest: Howard Shore

From howardshore.com: A one-of-a-kind evening: an audience with the Academy Award-winning composer Howard Shore. Orchestre National d’Île de France celebrates the outstanding career and achievements of a true icon, with performances of his best-known scores and live interviews with the composer from the stage. Audiences will thrill to the music from his legendary scores to The Lord of the Rings trilogy and music from The Hobbit with scores from his films: The Aviator, Mrs. Doubtfire, The Silence of the Lambs, and many more. International star ZAZ will be joining the evening performing “Cœur volant” from Hugo. This is an epic evening filled with amazing music and the composer’s own insights. A unique experience not to be missed! For more information: http://www.howardshore.com/the-music-of-howard-shore-paris/

 

October 21, 2017  – Hull, U.K.:  Hull University Tolkien Centenary Day – From The Tolkien Society website: The Dennison Centre at the University of Hull will be hosting a day of talks and historical reconstructions to commemorate the time spent in 1917 by J.R.R. Tolkien at what was then the Brooklands Military Hospital during World War I. The Tolkien Day (free of charge) will be based around the theme of Tolkien and the Great War, and include talks (in the morning) by Michael Flowers and Tom Shippey. For more information: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/events/hull-university-tolkien-centenary-day-2017/

 

 

 

November 9 to 10, 2017 Greenville, SC, U.S.A.: Celebrate Tolkien conference – From the conference website:  You are invited to attend the first annual Celebration of JRR Tolkien at the enchanting Old Cigar Warehouse in Greenville, South Carolina on November 9-10, 2017. This event will feature presentations by some of the world’s leading Tolkien experts, artists, performers, and authors of our day. The presentations are not the only part of the celebration. Also join us for a pipe smoking competition, Hobbit games, and Middle Earth themed food and music. For more information: https://www.celebratetolkien.com/#about

 

November 12, 2017 London, U.K.: A Celebration of the Music from Game of Thrones, The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit Live in Concert with Symphony Orchestra and Choir

They are the most beloved and recognisable big and small screen creations of all time – let alone just in the world of the Fantasy genre – and now, for the first time, the music of Game of Thrones, The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit will be celebrated in a one-off concert at the London Palladium. For more information and to purchase tickets: rutive.co.uk

 

November 14, 2017 to January 6, 2018Leek, Staffordshire, U.K.: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire exhibition

From The Tolkien Society website: The exhibition focuses on the time Tolkien spent in Staffordshire during the First World War. Visitors will be able to explore the writings, poetry, and artwork Tolkien wrote in the county, as well as learn more about life for soldiers in Staffordshire during the Great War. Copies of original artwork, of domestic scenes and landscapes drawn by Tolkien in 1918 in Staffordshire, will be on display as will photographs specially loaned by the Tolkien Estate and Bodleian Library. For more information: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/events/j-r-r-tolkien-in-staffordshire-exhibition/

 

December 2, 2017  Prague, Czech Republic & Lisbon Portugal: The Return of the King live to projection

– Howard Shore’s Academy Award®-winning Score performed live to the epic motion picture by symphony orchestra, chorus and soloists

From howardshore.com: the climactic chapter in Howard Shore’s music for The Lord of the Rings, The Return of the King gathers all that has come before and sets it charging relentlessly towards conclusion. Each character theme, each cultural style, every motif associated with the precepts of Tolkien’s work must reach the destination set before it in the previous two scores. For more information: http://www.howardshore.com/works/concerts/the-return-of-the-king-live-to-projection/

 

January 3, 2018  – Tolkien Toast (world-wide – google or visit the Tolkien Society webpage for celebrations near you, or plan your own)! From The Tolkien Society website: Each year on 3 January, the Tolkien Society encourages Tolkien fans from across the world to celebrate the Professor’s birthday with a simple toast-drinking ceremony. At 9pm your local time, simply raise a glass and toast the birthday of this much loved author. The toast is simply: The Professor!

All you need to do is stand, raise a glass of your choice of drink (not necessarily alcoholic), and say the words “The Professor” before taking a sip (or swig, if that’s more appropriate for your drink). Sit and enjoy the rest of your drink. For more information: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/society/events/toast/

 

January 9, 2018 to March 3, 2018Marquis Drive Visitor’s Center, U.K.: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire exhibition

From The Tolkien Society website: The exhibition focuses on the time Tolkien spent in Staffordshire during the First World War. Visitors will be able to explore the writings, poetry, and artwork Tolkien wrote in the county, as well as learn more about life for soldiers in Staffordshire during the Great War. Copies of original artwork, of domestic scenes and landscapes drawn by Tolkien in 1918 in Staffordshire, will be on display as will photographs specially loaned by the Tolkien Estate and Bodleian Library. For more information: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/events/j-r-r-tolkien-in-staffordshire-exhibition/

 

January 16 to 24, 2018 Poland tour: The Fellowship of the Ring Live to projection

– Howard Shore’s Academy Award®-winning Score performed live to the epic motion picture by symphony orchestra, chorus and soloists

From howardshore.com: composer Howard Shore brings J.R.R. Tolkien’s literary imagination to vivid life with his Academy®- and Grammy® Award-winning score to The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. Shore’s music expresses Peter Jackson’s film as an immense symphonic work—a uniquely developed vision drawn from centuries of stylistic tendencies. For more information: http://royalconcert.pl/

 

February 9 to 25, 2018Phoenix, AZ, U.S.A. – The Hobbit play: Valley Youth Theater in Phoenix will feature The Hobbit as part of their 2017-2018 season.

From the VYT website:; Bilbo, one of the most conservative of all Hobbits, is asked to leave his large, roomy and very dry home in the ground in order to set off as chief robber in an attempt to recover an important treasure. It’s the last thing that any sensitive Hobbit would want to do, but great benefit eventually results—not only for Bilbo but for all of the Hobbits who inhabit Middle Earth—and the hearts of those children and adults who continue to enjoy this kind of magic. Based on the classic by J.R.R. Tolkien, adapted by Patricia Gray. For more information: http://www.vyt.com/shows/the-hobbit/

March 6, 2018 to April 21, 2018Chasewater County Park, Staffordshire, U.K.: J.R.R. Tolkien in Staffordshire exhibition

From The Tolkien Society website: The exhibition focuses on the time Tolkien spent in Staffordshire during the First World War. Visitors will be able to explore the writings, poetry, and artwork Tolkien wrote in the county, as well as learn more about life for soldiers in Staffordshire during the Great War. Copies of original artwork, of domestic scenes and landscapes drawn by Tolkien in 1918 in Staffordshire, will be on display as will photographs specially loaned by the Tolkien Estate and Bodleian Library. For more information: https://www.tolkiensociety.org/events/j-r-r-tolkien-in-staffordshire-exhibition/

(no subject)

Sep. 24th, 2017 10:30 pm
cupcake_goth: (Default)
[personal profile] cupcake_goth
Cartomancy: DEAR POWERS THAT BE, WHEN I ASKED FOR LESS OBFUSCATION AFTER THE VAGUE TAROT CARD, I DID NOT MEAN SARCASM.



Halloween Tarot: Page of Ghosts (Page of Cups)



Vintage Wisdom Oracle: Healing
fairestcat: naked woman reading. vintage (Reading)
[personal profile] fairestcat
I've been doing less book bingeing and more reading of fic over the last month, which is probably, ultimately a happy balance for me.

Liberty and Other Stories (Prosperity, #2-4, 6) - Alexis Hall - ★ ★ ★ ★

A diverse series of stories expanding on the Prosperity universe, both before and after the events of Prosperity. read more )

The New Born Year - Kris Ripper ★ ★

I love this series, and I really liked getting to know Ally better, but I found this a difficult and unpleasant read. read more )

Full of Briars (October Daye, #9.3) - Seanan McGuire ★ ★ ★

I'm several books behind in this series, and figured this was a good way to dip back in. Because Quentin. Who is awesome. read more )

Gun To My Head - Dira Lewis ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Reread. First read April 5, 2017. Second read April 6, 2017. Third read now, by which you might infer that I really fucking love this book. read more )

The Mystic Marriage (Alpennia, #2) - Heather Rose Jones ★ ★ ★ ★

I continue to adore this series. This second installment continues to follow Barbara and Margerit's lives, while expanding the focus to two characters who played a supporting role in the first book. read more )

The Element of Fire (Ile-Rien, #1) - Martha Wells ★ ★ ★ ★ ★

Reread. I think I first read this sometime in 2010.

This is a secondary-world fantasy set in the approximate equivalent of 17th Century France only with both sorcery and Fae creatures.read more )

Point of Dreams (Astreiant, #2) - Melissa Scott & Lisa A. Barnett ★ ★ ★ ★

In some ways the murders are the least interesting part of this book. They matter, and they drive the plot, but it's the thematic stuff going on around and in cause of the murders that I found most interesting.

This is a book about relationships, and the ways they are seen and controlled by society and societal pressures. read more )

Seven Summer Nights - Harper Fox ★ ★ ★ ★

This was not the book I expected it to be, but I quite enjoyed the book it turned out to be.

This is, as the cover copy stated, a just-post-WWII historical romance between an archaeologist and a vicar, both of whom came back from the war changed. It's about two men trying to fit back into roles and ways of life they no longer fit. read more )

Bound to Be a Groom (Regency Reimagined, #1) - Megan Mulry

DNF.

It's queer, kinky, poly, historical erotica. I'm pretty much THE target audience for this book. And I gave up at 13% read. read more )

Death by Silver (Julian Lynes and Ned Mathey, #1) - Melissa Scott & Amy Griswold ★ ★ ★ ★

This was a rougher read than I expected from the ad copy. Good, but at times decidedly difficult.

This is a queer, steampunk murder mystery, but that's not really what it's about.

What it actually is is a book about institutionally-sanctioned bullying and abuse and the different ways in which adult survivors of childhood trauma cope with their past. read more )
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Journalist and 2014 Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Henderson on Trump and white supremacy:

There is a pattern, and I think it's pretty clear that the annoyance, I think, on the part of a lot of African-Americans and other people who want more racial justice is the apologists that continue to sort of argue about whether this is a president who supports institutions of white supremacy. Let's look at what he said on Friday night in Alabama and how enthusiastically he said it, that these people should be fired. Contrast that with what he said after he saw a bunch of white men with torches march in Charlottesville. "There are lots of fine people among those marchers," he said. Then put it into the policy context. This is a president whose attorney general has said, "We're going to back off of these consent agreements with police departments," who are causing the very problem that people like Colin Kaepernick is protesting. How can we continue to have an argument about whether this is a president who is pushing the idea of white supremacy?

An Activists’ Calendar of Resistance EventsIndivisible’s list of Resistance Events & Groups

TOP COMMENTSHIGH IMPACT STORIESTHIS WEEK’S HIGH IMPACT STORIES

TWEET OF THE DAY

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Patriotism isn't about making everyone stand and salute the flag.Patriotism is about making this a country where everyone wants to.

— Jason Kander (@JasonKander) September 24, 2017

BLAST FROM THE PAST

At Daily Kos on this date in 2013—Texas Republicans will always be the last horse out of the barn:

Given the caliber of political mind Texas Republicans seem intent on foisting off onto the rest of us, non-Texans might be curious as to what sorts of people they've tapped for state government of late. The simple answer is "more of the same," as the responses to an AP questionnaire on gay rights sent to GOP candidates for governor, lieutenant governor and attorney general revealed. Lt. Gov. Dewhurst sets the tone:

"Sadly, in a culture infected with political correctness, people of faith are targeted for defending their beliefs with no consideration of their First Amendment rights. I will continue to stand with my fellow Texans in defending our God-given, constitutionally protected freedoms."

Yes, yes. Why are we even talking about civil rights for gay Americans when people of faith are the real victims here. It's getting so you can't even show your love for Jesus by calling someone names and beating them up anymore.

Monday through Friday you can catch the Kagro in the Morning Show 9 AM ET by dropping in here, or you can download the Stitcher app (found in the app stores or at Stitcher.com), and find a live stream there, by searching for "Netroots Radio.”

[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

There was a time when ancient wise men used astrology the way we use science and analysis today to make important decisions. But the astrology was more reality-based than we appreciate these days. If you wanted to know when tons of tasty mammoth meat would come lumbering down to the perilous annual water crossing, or the best time to plant crops, paying close attention to the apparent motion of the sun, moon, and stars paid off. So, our early analysts reasoned, if subtle celestial changes foretold the migrations or the coming of summer, perhaps even more subtle motion could predict the best time to get married, or start a war.

Nowadays, with the benefit of hindsight, we know that the calendar really does depend on celestial mechanics, and we know individual horoscopes are just for fun. But you can’t blame those early astronomers for trying to use what worked, and considering some of the other jobs available at the time, it was a pretty good gig.

Today there’s a new predictive discipline, and it’s not hard to find modern-day analogues of those ancient stargazers practicing it. They peer into and write arcane scripts full of confusing glyphs to extract what they say is a valuable product, one that lends itself to just about every aspect of modern commerce. Which is not a bad description of modern science in general, but we call this particular gig data science, and it has rapidly become one of the hottest jobs in the world.

But data science is not as new as some people think. In fact, it’s older than your grandparents. What’s new is there’s been an explosion in it for a simple reason: you! 

[syndicated profile] dailykos_feed

The stated opposition of Sen. John McCain to Senate Republicans' newest attempts to gut both "Obamacare" and Medicaid itself has severely wounded those efforts, but it hasn't killed them. Senators Cassidy and Graham took to the Sunday shows today to continue selling their bill, and the Republican leadership is pressing hard to see which holdout senators can still be bought.

Out in the rest of the country, however, medical groups are nearly unanimous in their condemnation of the bill. The latest is a joint statement from the American Medical Association, the American Hospital Association, the Federation of American Hospitals, the American Academy of Family Physicians, AHIP and Blue Cross/Blue Shield—some of the most prominent healthcare groups in the nation—that blasts the bill and urges the Senate to vote against it.

While we sometimes disagree on important issues in health care, we are in total agreement that Americans deserve a stable healthcare market that provides access to high-quality care and affordable coverage for all. The Graham-Cassidy-Heller-Johnson bill does not move us closer to that goal. The Senate should reject it.

We agree that the bill will cause patients and consumers to lose important protections, as well as undermine safeguards for those with pre-existing conditions. [...]

We agree that the bill will result in dramatic cuts to Medicaid and a funding cliff in the future, fundamentally changing the way that states provide coverage for some of our most vulnerable citizens. This means that tens of millions of patients will lose their coverage and go without much-needed care.

We agree that the individual insurance market will be drastically weakened, making coverage more expensive and jeopardizing American's choice of health plans. By not providing all states with sufficient funds to support working families who need help buying coverage, millions will go without it.

On ABC, Sen. Bill Cassidy suggested that we'll be seeing a new version of the bill tomorrow morning—and used that new version to dismiss any upcoming evaluations of the bill's effects from the Congressional Budget Office.

"There will be a new bill introduced tomorrow morning. Whatever the CBO scores will be superseded by another score later this week. Some of what will be seen tomorrow will no longer be relevant."

We’ve won some important battles to save health care but we haven’t won the war. Republicans could still get the votes to repeal Obamacare. Call your senators at (202) 224-3121 and urge them to vote “NO” on any repeal bill. (After you call, please tell us how it went.)

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Posted by Anne Laurie


.

What’s on the agenda, as we wrap up the weekend?

***********

Also, Larry Summers, still an arsehole:

The Good Place

Sep. 24th, 2017 04:57 pm
sartorias: (Default)
[personal profile] sartorias
I've been watching this really clever sitcom while doing the exercise bike. Sadly, I only have a couple of episodes to go for the first season. Why couldn't it be longer?

It is so rare that I like a sitcom, but this one is smart and funny, and the actors terrific.

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