index.html

"Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power." Lao Tzu

quake's world
Welcome to The Quake, a non-commercial site touching on a variety of topics. The site was recently in maintenance and upgraded so apologies for any inconvenience and also that some items and links have not returned yet.

Meanwhile content will continue to be re-added to the site so feel free to check back whenever a site beholden to nobody, including pesky advertisers, is your cup of tea.

And now onto the bigger question: will the USA defeat the latest and gravest onslaught to its democracy? Other than our own individual votes, most of the other stuff is beyond our immediate control. So we vote and then keep doing whatever is legitimately possible to keep the USA a democracy. It may or may not be enough.

Local tip of the hat -- thanks California for having such a brilliantly organized mail-in ballot system with tracking. "Your vote has been received and will be counted" is always a reassuring text to see in these turbulent times.

YouTube progressive politics channels
majority report with sam seder
glenn kirschner & twitter
progressive voice
democracy at work
TYT [young turks]
dollemore
farron balanced farron cousins [ring of fire]
david pakman
rational national canada
some more news
humanist report
secular talk
robert reich
AJ+
patriot act
brian tyler cohen @bryantylercohen
now this news
the hill "rising" program [hill's attempt at balanced debate]
samantha bee
beau of the fifth column
damage report
global news canada

Other likeable links

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2018/06/the-birth-of-a-new-american-aristocracy/559130/
America's toxic class divide link

the guardian
lean forward with the msnbc you-tube site
cnn.com news site
associated press
washington post, podcasts, u-tube
new york times, the daily podcast
PBS newshour episodes, live on 3-4pm M-F pacific USA time
on kqed livestream
the tweet of god
slate plus amicus podcast
source politics
dem underground
TPM talking points memo
crooks & liars
crooked media
the intercept and podcasts
the atlantic + podcasts
the white house
sludge exposing corruption
washington week youtube site
common dreams
daily kos
california health advocates
politico & politico podcasts
democracy now
raw story
robert reich website
rick wilson
axios
the daily beast + the new abnormal pod
media matters
bob cesca show
euronews online
npr news & npr twitter
foreign policy
channel 4 news uk
jonathan freedland
how appealing
public citizen
pro publica
vox
move on
democracy forward
justice democrats
just security
national memo
american oversight
democrats.com
vina erickson legend
political voices w/ stephanie miller et al.
stephanie harlowe
xe.com currency currency exchange converter
on being podcast
the last quiet places
mac option key symbols
free dictionary.com
annualcreditreport.com the one that's actually free, link fixed
morninginvest on you-tube
inside ev's inside electric vehicles
allcarselectric.com [aka] green car reports
plugincars.com electric vehicles summary
all EV
narcissism & religion esteemology
need to impeach
next generation america

Usually reliable online TV streams
al jazeera in english changes URL a lot
CNA singapore
france 24 in english, and french [both: frequent URL changes]
KQED livestream viewer supported by.... u
washington week youtube site
DW german intntl news in english, frequent URL changes
sky news [reduced its rightwing bias] uk
tvr britanny, france
elonce tv argentina
rtl muenchen deutschland
telemolise southern italia
sfgovtv san francisco, calif., usa

Online radio
kqed san francisco radio
kalw san francisco radio
kazu nat. public radio for the monterey bay

Other radio
bbc world service

Radio programs and podcasts
here & now
the takeaway
The World [PRI]
on point
on the media

Previous posts and links
Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg tries to show that he really is human. He eats a sandwich and virtually inspects the devastation in Puerto Rico.


May 2021
USA about to
bite back at
the threats
from within

Justice matters
"Accountability for criminal Republican president can't happen soon enough" is the headline of Thom Hartmann's recent you tube channel "deep dive" episode - and now with the investigation into Rudy Giuliani's bizarre past behavior and highly dodgy acts in full swing, a lot could be about to unfold in this coming year of reckoning and desperately needed justice. It's a tribute to the American system that we just about survived the previous toxic regime but the danger going forward is ever present.

April 2021
Violence, hate and
racism are drowning
our beloved USA

Biden stabilizes States

"When Republicans want to make it tougher to vote than to purchase a gun, something is definitely off-kilter." -- Lloyd Green, Guardian.

Re. the previous murders at the Georgia spas: "Robert Aaron Long's parents kicked him out of the house on Monday night, according to police and a friend. The next day, police said, he bought a handgun." -- Washington Post

CNN with a timely reminder, about the best state in the USA, provided by historian DJ Waldie: "California was never as golden as the dreamers made it out and it’s never been as dystopic as those who complain about California make it out.”

The Conservative Political Action Conference wheeled a golden calf-like version of Donald Trump onto the stage of their hotel ballroom, a stage whose risers were arranged to shape it into a nordic emblem last seen appropriated by the German Nazi regime in Hitler's Germany. The theme of their event was that Trump is still the president and they're all in with him together in a fake alternative government. Weird much. Q approves apparently, as did Ted Cruz who quipped that the location of this rightwing whack show was not up to Cancun standards, where he traveled during lockdown as his state of Texas was without power. America, in general, is powerless while the likes of him are elected.

February 2021
Democrats rule
"The six presidents who have presided over the fastest job growth have all been Democrats" points out the New York Times. No matter how you look at any of the indicators Americans would be far better off if Democrats were in power all the time.

"Americans feel better when a Democrat is in charge. Seems plausible that feeling better would correlate with voting for Democrats in the first place. People have postulated that voting for the political right is associated with 'survive' politics - scarcity, protectionism, avoid large changes - while the political left is associated with 'thrive' politics - abundance, fairness, experimentation." -- Todd, Chicago

"The real question is: Why are Democrats so dismally poor at delivering and hammering this message home to the American people? Republicans do it as a matter of course, of daily policy. Democrats make a speech or two, and walk away, thinking they are done - when in fact they haven't even begun yet." -- GW bear, Florida

Politico reports that in a Trump pollster's campaign autopsy "The 27-page report pins Trump's loss on voter perception that he was untrustworthy and disapproval of his pandemic performance."

Dems must 'Go Big'
The inability of Democrats to get any proper reciprocation from the Trump-captured GOP means the idea of working together will largely fail. It takes two to tango and the GOP machine is in the hands of the state and local levels, the tail which completely wags the disoriented reactionary dog.

Once the Dems have gone thru the motions of reaching out the hand and getting it bitten, the Dems must then be as ruthless as their opponents if they have any chance to defeat Q-anon laced corporate fascism and keep America free, in the true sense of the word.

Even going full steam ahead, the odds are still strong that, as capitalism eats itself [currently underway even as we speak], the power brokers will shore up the system with an authoritarian "single party" non-democracy such as Trump was close to achieving.

The days of softball are over. Either the Biden administration will acknowledge the state of play and give America at least a decent chance to stave off the next wave of attempted undemocratic authoritarianism, or our chances are practically zero. Let's see what they decide to do as crunch decision time rapidly approaches.

Please check back for more February thoughts.

January 2021
Massive sigh of relief
It's over. Trump is kicked out, lashing out at everything Americans value including justice [his most egregiously disgusting pardons surely must be challenged], democracy, and law and order. Our new president will roll back everything the failed fake president dumped onto We The People that he [Joe Biden] possibly can achieve through his executive power. But of course there remains so very much to do to stabilize the lurching ship and get it back on course to a bright, happy and safe future. Both for this great nation, and for the world.

Justice for
a severely
damaged nation
Donald - when will he be history?
What happens next? BBC: "The Senate - the upper house of the US Congress - will hold a trial to determine the president's guilt but this will not happen during Mr Trump's remaining week in office."

It's dawning even on people who don't think about these issues much. When we now hear someone say "This isn't America" we uneasily realize that, sadly, the historical evidence says otherwise.

"This is the biggest lie and the very reason why America stays a racist country, because this is America. This is the ugly racist white supremacy part of America which especially Republicans are unable to acknowledge. Every time there are atrocities committed by Americans, the white America tries to disown it by crying 'This isn't America'. Abu Ghraib in 2004 was America. The Blackwater mercenaries who killed civilians in 2014 and who were just now pardoned by Trump are America. Caged children separated from their parents are America. National Guard against BLM protests vs Police selfies with Capitol storming white terrorists are America. Only when all Americans acknowledge the shortcomings of their society, will they be able to fix anything. This is America." -- winzehnt "The Independent" newspaper reader.

US demo-
cracy under
seige
Can Donald duck impeachment #2?
Can desperate Donald duck a second humiliating impeachment after what the Independent describes as an "attempted 'criminal' Georgia call" [made 18 times!] to get Brad Raffensperger, Georgia Secretary of State, to "recalculate" and "find" enough votes to win him the state in the presidential election which he has already lost? If there truly is a desire by both the politicians and public: now or never is surely the time that this great nation must make it clear that the people's vote is sacred and should be strenuously protected.

"What used to be a bargain between Trump and the GOP -- in which they would overlook his corruption and abuses of power, and he would deliver judicial nominations and policy wins -- has devolved into a series of one-sided demands. Trump is no longer giving his party anything and is instead bullying them to cooperate with a series of increasingly absurd conspiracy theories and pseudo-constitutional remedies." -- Jonathan Chait, New York mag.

Eat your
lovely veggies
Happy Q Year
Happy Quake New Year and keep shakin'. Is this the year that we finally go vegan? Then Veganuary would be the perfect time, and the above linked Guardian podcast might just be the thing to get us over the line. Well, vegetarian or pescatarian if not that. Actually it's a really interesting podcast so thanks to the Guardian and the podcast guest Marco Springmann of Oxford University, UK.

Meanwhile in Gallup polling Trump's approval rating dropped from 43% to 39% since the election. But the stark reality remains: "Most of the 74,222,957 Americans who voted to re-elect Donald Trump -- 46.8% of the votes cast in the 2020 presidential election -- don't hold Trump accountable for what he's done to America. Their acceptance of Trump's behavior will be his vilest legacy." Robert Reich in a Guardian article.

Does VAR = Brexit?
Is football's equivalent of Brexit, VAR, becoming the sport's self-inflicted damage that is leading to more ludicrous and intrusive decisions every week, with no one willing to stand up and say this is not at all what was envisaged? Sort it.

"Deranged"
& "dangerous"
warns press
December 2020
Jan 6: Blusters last stand
"Be prepared to have to go to the bathroom outside." - Magaman, exhorting fellow MAGAts to demonstrate on January 6 when Congress counts electoral votes and certifies winner.

"Donald Trump will go down in history as the first American president to have willingly betrayed his own country in service to a foreign enemy. His acts of treason will be taught in history books for generations to come, and the name 'Trump' will become synonymous with treachery." -- john cooper

"The Republicans should become a party of ideas. It's been basically an anti-Democrat party. They don't have any ideas on healthcare, environment or the wealth gap. The Democrats are not in great shape either, but Joe Biden might be able to appeal to middle America. We'll see whether they will do that but Republicans really need to get some ideas otherwise they will wilt away." -- -- John Kasich, former Republican presidential candidate.

The laundry list of grievous bodily harm that Trump's wrecking ball is dishing out to USA democracy, the military, our defence and security, citizen's rights, the environment, the justice system, is too long to type out in this limited space, but whilst hundreds of thousand of Americans have perished or been permanently disabled, and while many of the deaths could have been avoided, sociopathic Trump is oblivious to the desperate needs of the people. No matter how bad their plight, both economic and health wise, his twisted twitter-mind has been itself contorted, deranged, and contaminated by his own ugly toxicity.

Justice matters
November 2020
Trump coup snuffed
It's official. CNN: "Transition can begin." BBC: "Trump accepts transition must begin." Independent: "President admits defeat and orders transition." Guardian: "No deal Brexit to cost more than Covid" - oops.... Seriously though, the Guardian was right that Brexit, for UK'ers, is a way bigger problem that's only just about to start.

Even crazed Trump stooge Emily Murphy, who is supposed to be impartial and professional, but dug her heels in against America's democratic process, has finally caved, her biased brain in meltdown, and she has, way too late, been forced to declare and certify it as official: "Biden has won the presidential election." Even if she sobs that Putin hasn't agreed or that she will have to dismantle her sordid shrine to Trump and to evil.

Donald J Trump is a sorry assed loser.

CISA: "The 3 November election was the most secure in American history. There is no evidence that any voting system deleted or lost votes, changed votes, or was in any way compromised". Toxic Trump responded by firing CISA head Christopher Krebs. Steve Rustad: "Trump is on a rampage against democracy. He's a lawless thug, a racist, a fascist, a treasonous psychopath. And the damn GOP is complicit in his treachery." #Protect2020

"Without consequences for criminal actions by those at the top then equality under the law and no one above it becomes a lie. Either prosecute the wealthy and connected or empty the jails and prisons and shut down law enforcement as fake because accountability doesn't matter and justice is either propaganda or a cruel cudgel to beat the serfs." -- partially paraphrased [for clarity] of forum post by TheKentuckian, on Daily Kos.

Guns & MAGgots
Humpty trumpty dumped
Thomas Franck, The Guardian: "Ding-dong, the jerk is gone. Finally, we have come to the end of Donald Trump's season of extreme misrule. Voters have rejected what can only be described as the crassest, vainest, stupidest, most dysfunctional leadership this country has ever suffered."

On the day after Biden won Penn and so too the presidency, the Trump regime showed their incompetency in a spectacularly inept manner. They accidentally booked the parking lot of a nondescript garden center apparently thinking it was a luxury hotel by the same name. As reported in The Guardian, TV writer Zack Bornstein quipped on Twitter: "I could write jokes for 800 years and I'd never think of something funnier than Trump booking the Four Seasons for his big presser, and it turning out to be the Four Seasons Total Landscaping parking lot between a dildo store and a crematorium".

UPDATE: Nov 7: the day Joe Biden's Pennsylvania is called for Joe Biden. Of course, that was enough to deliver glorious victory for a hopeful American future. The "270 threshold" has been attained, even without Arizona, Nevada or Georgia reporting as of the point of no return. Congratulations to everyone who voted for good over evil.

REFLECTION: "The election of Trump and liberal backlash thereof is an awakening by millions who have been complacent observers of their government. I see that as a positive thing because it means we will all become less lazy in our thinking. More critical thinking, less reactionism. We can only hope." -- Readloudnation [2016]

UPDATE: Looks like wee biddy Joe Biden is getting closer to becoming president unless corrupt Donald Trump "wins" using the authoritarian playbook, which he's gonna try with the help of attorney general bent Billy Barr and an army of ultra right anti-democratic lackeys. By winning states like Michigan and Colorado, and now leading in Arizona, Pennsylvania, Nevada and Georgia, the flawed messiah that is Biden is well on his way. GLORIOUS RELIEF. F*** off Trump!

"Despite the frantic (and utterly predictable) attempts from President Trump and his allies to undermine the legitimacy of the vote in the states where he is losing, there have been no major foreign interference campaigns unearthed this week, and Election Day itself was relatively quiet." -- Kevin Roose, NYT

INITIAL "DAY AFTER" REACTION: The national election doesn't look good overall compared with the high hopes the Democrats had. But it can still be salvaged if Joe Biden can nab the Presidency. If Biden wins, again by no means in the bag at the time of writing, that would be truly brilliant, getting rid of Trump would be a massive, massive relief. But to make truly meaningful change they need the Senate too and that is not going to happen. The Dem's Senate bid was catastrophic. Although they should hold the House, they've actually lost double digit seats there. So now we wait....

California dreamin'
California, like the other regularly Blue states, remains staunchly aligned with the party of hope for a better and necessary future for a battered, divided and dysfunctional nation whose free and fair elections and proper democracy are still hanging by the thinnest of threads.

In the Golden state we see stark evidence that corporations have taken to successfully creating and financing propositions, such as Cal Proposition 22, which spent $200 million [as reported by fivethirtyeight.com] to "help" voters decide that Uber, Lyft, DoorDash, Instacart [etc] gig economy drivers and delivery people are classified as independent contractors not employees, thus denying them benefits and SS savings.

So while the idea of propositions has benefited the people - especially in curbing residential property tax hikes that would have made the state unaffordable to all but the wealthiest inhabitants - it has sadly, like so much else, been gamed by powerful forces that increasingly use the mechanism to achieve their own selfish ends irrespective of its benefit to the everyday Californian. Sound familiar?

But overall the result for the West Coast in general is as usual encouraging, despite the big national disappointment, and TheQuake will reflect on other Golden state results as they come in.

Result coverage & reactions from:

Majority report

Washington post home

New york times home

CNN news

fivethirtyeight

Have U visited the other must-see quake pages?

The Spur

Page three

Buddhist
"Join today to repair the racial karma of this nation."
-- Dr. Williams, Univ. of So. California School of Religion at temple in Little Tokyo, L.A.