Temperance postcards from early 1900’s

The Temperance Movement was largely started by women whose husbands were trashed by alcohol. Alcohol consumption then was way higher than now and bars were everywhere in cities. Postcards of the time showed both the pro- and anti-temperance point of view.

If you’re wondering why Carrie Nation rarely got arrested for smashing up bars with a hatchet it’s because a) she was 6′ 0″, 175 lbs. and b) she smashed up bars in towns that had laws against bars but the laws weren’t enforced. Arresting her would mean authorities would have to admit the bars existed.

Temperance postcard. Sign The Pledge

Temperance postcard. Delirium tremens

Temperance postcard. Anti-Irish

Grotesquely anti-Irish card, portrays them like monkeys

Temperance postcard. Painfully sober Temperance postcard. Bitter drop Temperance postcard. Connect to brewery

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Those big, angelic, moral wings. And means vs. ends

Angelic wings
Saul Alinsky in Rules for Radicals said that during a major fight with a big corporation, someone came to him with proof the opposition leader was gay (this in an era when that could end a career.) Alinsky turned him down. But explains, had he no other choice, he would have used it, “ethical hymen” be damned.

Quoting from Rules For Radicals:

“Thanks, but forget it. I don’t fight that way. I don’t want to see it. Goodbye.” He protested, “But they just tried to hang you on that girl.” I replied, “The fact that they fight that way doesn’t mean I have to do it. To me, dragging a person’s private life into this muck is loathsome and nauseous.” He left.

So far, so noble; but, if I had been convinced that the only way we could win was to use it, then without any reservations I would have used it. What was my alternative? To draw myself up into righteous “moral” indignation saying, “I would rather lose than corrupt my principles,” and then go home with my ethical hymen intact? The fact that 40,000 poor would lose their war against hopelessness and despair was just too tragic. That their condition would even be worsened by the vindictiveness of the corporation was also terrible and unfortunate, but that’s life. After all, one has to remember means and ends. It’s true that I might have trouble getting to sleep because it takes time to tuck those big, angelic, moral wings under the covers. To me that would be utter immorality. “

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Ben Carson wets himself in fear over Saul Alinsky

Rules for Radicals
Ben Carson had a fine fit of derangement speaking last night at the RNC, saying one of Hillary’s role models, Saul Alinsky, “acknowledges Lucifer.” Let’s unpack this hysterical piece of fear-mongering, shall we? Hillary did indeed write her thesis on Alinsky – and concluded his tactics were ineffective. Thus, she was not an Alinsky follower at all.

As for the “acknowledges Lucifer” idiocy, Carson is referring to the dedication to Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals, which rather clearly was meant tongue-in-cheek, except for the humor-impaired or those who believe way too much in imaginary creatures.

The dedication reads:

“Lest we forget at least an over-the-shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical: from all our legends, mythology, and history (and who is to know where mythology leaves off and history begins — or which is which), the first radical known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom — Lucifer”

A reality-based person would read that and realize the humor in it. Ben Carson soils himself in fear over it.

Rules for Radicals has nothing to do with ideology. It’s about community organizing and building power for your group. Lots of people on the right have used the book for organizing too.

Also, Alinsky thought communists and socialists were useless, saying “Quotes from Mao, Castro, and Che Guevara… are as germane to our highly technological, computerized society as a stagecoach on a jet runway at Kennedy airport.”

He organized Back of the Yards by telling Catholic church priests in Chicago in the 1930’s either I organize your parishioners or the communists and socialists will. And if we win, they will have more money to put in the collection on Sundays. The priests agreed and teamed up with him. They won a strike against brutal meat packing work conditions and low pay. This was the birth of community organizing.

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Biomass plants using dead trees could lessen forest fires

Dead trees. Pine bark beetle

The pine bark beetle has killed millions of trees in California. These dead trees are now a fire hazard. Hauling the trees to biomass plants to be burned to produce electricity will lessen the fire hazard. However, transporting the trees uses diesel fuel, and thus is polluting, plus biomass plants can be a bit messy themselves.

But still, imagine a fire facing down a mountain and hitting thousands of dead trees. The pollution into the air from such a conflagration would be way more than biomass plants produce. Unfortunately, biomass plants in California are closing because they don’t get subsidies like solar and wind do. This is short-sighted and counter-productive.

It’s truly a no-brainer because there are a number of well-located (biomass) facilities that are underutilized,” Malinowski Ball said. “It means millions of tons of organic material diverted from the least favorable environmental outcomes, such as landfilling and burning.”

Meanwhile, a large supply of organic material looms in the Sierra.

There are an estimated 66 million dead trees in California’s forests.

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Gamer platform Twitch will broadcast both conventions

Twitch. Democratic and Republican conventions

Video platform and community for gamers Twitch will broadcast the Democratic and Republican conventions live, letting their millions of viewers watch something perhaps unfamiliar using a website and tools they know well.

Josh Mull at pvplive ponders what this means to gamers, what they can  expect, and will the conventions be lame. Me, I think this could be expanded upon and look forward to see raging battles in Pokemon Go between the two parties. Perhaps contested conventions could be settled by gamers duking it in Street Fighter V, saving us all hours of listening to gasbag politicians pontificate while the actual fight is in a back room in the convention hall.

The Democratic Party is one of those brands that isn’t really cool, but like Mountain Dew or Arby’s, when they get involved with gaming you’re like “yeah, that sounds right.”

Unless you’re in the streets with the Black Bloc, you probably won’t see a lot of cosplay at this particular convention. The DNC is more like E3, in that it’s a bunch of weirdly-shiny old people desperately trying to convince you they’re authentic.

On Hillary Clinton:

Like our Anna Prosser’s and Lilian Chen’s, Secretary Clinton is a powerful symbol for women everywhere that you too can achieve the same heights of greatness previously only available to men.

But unlike our gamers, you can’t really dox her, since we all know where the President lives. And she can always SWAT you with the Secret Service. On the other hand, there’s plenty of sexism and harasment campaigns coming from the opposition, so hey, she’s just like us!

From Twitch blog:

For many of the millions of US voters who call Twitch home, Twitch is a primary source of community and entertainment. Many of you simply don’t watch TV or browse Facebook, for example. So, we’ve worked closely with the Republican and Democratic National Conventions to bring you the full coverage of both events right here on Twitch (Twitch Plays Politics?).

We see this as a public service. It’s an opportunity for you to engage in the political process, and with each other, during this election year without leaving your native habitat, using the social and communication tools you know and love.

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