Week-long Welcomings from Moosylvania: Dec. 17th through Dec. 23rd

Welcome to The Moose Pond! The Welcomings posts give the Moose, old and new, a place to visit and share words about the weather, life, the world at large and the small parts of Moosylvania that we each inhabit.

Welcomings will be posted at the start of each week (every Sunday morning). To find the posts, just bookmark this link and Voila! (which is Moose for “I found everyone!!”).

The format is simple: each day, the first moose to arrive on-line will post a comment welcoming the new day and complaining (or bragging!) about their weather. Or mentioning an interesting or thought provoking news item. Or simply checking in.

So … what’s going on in your part of Moosylvania?

NOTE: The comments page will now split off after 20 or so left margin comments with the most recent comments on the current page. To see the older comments, scroll to the bottom of the page and use the link.


Page One of comments is HERE!
Page Two of comments is HERE!



  1. Good “morning”, Motley Meese! The week begins …

    Morning low of 28 degrees in Madison WI with an expected daytime high of 36. Mostly cloudy skies are in the forecast.

    Have a great day, all y’alls!!

  2. The news this morning is discouraging for those who hoped that Republicans would be unwilling to support actual criminals in the White House. The timing of the “fire Mueller” murmurings and the pending tax scam are not a coincidence: Congressional Republicans want this tax cut so badly that they will sell their souls to get it. It is likely that they realize that this may be it – unless their policies kill significant numbers of voters before November 2018, they will lose Congress and, with Mr. 33% Popularity, will lose the presidency in 2020. We can repeal a lot of the provisions and maybe block a few with lawsuits but this tax cut will be a big gift to Republican donors for the next 3 years. I hope that Democratic leaders understand that making common cause with Republicans in 2021 will not be well received by their base. What happened with this tax bill is shameful and we will want payback.

    I see that Anita Hill will be chairing a commission on sexual harassment in Hollywood. I hope that her name in the news makes Clarence Thomas uncomfortable and that the story of his, and Senate Republicans and Democrats, treatment of her revelations during his confirmation hearing gets heard by more people. The election of dozens of women to Congress after that hearing was called “The Year of the Woman”. What better person to be the face of the upcoming wave of women in politics than a woman who faced her abusers and lost – in a year when women are now facing their abusers and forcing them out of positions of power.

    • Very glad to see this happening for Anita Hill. Most of my students have no clue who she is – perhaps a new generation will learn that – now.

      • That is my hope, as well. I know how frustrated you get that people don’t know the history of black Americans, the history of slavery, the history of racial injustice. We need to get history into the news and pepper our references with searchable terms.

        One of the big failures of 2016, in my mind, is not remembering what happened in 2000 when people voted for third parties because “both parties are the same”. The electoral college “victory” led to a war of choice that killed millions, setbacks in our fight against global warming, and a financial meltdown that destroyed the futures of many. The millennials who came of age during the recovery were easy marks for a demagogue saying that Democrats were the problem and pied pipering them into the ocean with promises of a glorious revolution.

        • The Green Party lure was strong on my campus – as was the Burn.
          Few of the students thought about the consequences. They are seeing them now.
          A lesson learned – but at what price?

      • And one of the people who gave her such a hard time was good ol’ “Uncle Joe,” whom some are touting for the Democratic nom for POTUS in 2020. I’ve never cared for him, both because of the Anita Hill harassment and for the MBNA affair in 2005.

        He’ll be too old anyway in 2020. Can we get some young blood in there? If we weren’t allowed to have HRC, perhaps another woman with a fighting spirit?

        And this time we’ll PUSH BACK against the likes of Matt Taibbi and every journo who disses a female presidential candidate.

  3. Another cold morning (40s) but the rain is gone — I’m guessing from the news that it didn’t come from California, since the fires are still spreading. Watching the news, waiting for AMJoy. Today: put food together for next week, make tea, take my friend her souvenir glass from yesterday. My boys have done a cover of What’s Going On — such an appropriate song for 2017.

  4. Good morning, Moosekind! The sky is a muted blue here in NoVa, and the sun is shining in a rather watery fashion. Our powdered-sugar dusting of snow has entirely disappeared. Current temp. is 28 F., going up to 50 F. later.

    This from Jan:

    I hope that Democratic leaders understand that making common cause with Republicans in 2021 will not be well received by their base.

    Absolutely right. I was disturbed to read in the WaPo this morning that our governor-elect Ralph Northam isn’t going to govern in a “partisan” fashion but is going to make nice with the Rethug-dominated legislature. That bugs me and I plan to make my displeasure known by email and telephone if he starts openly making love to the Rethugs. I disliked the fact that this person voted for Dubya twice (how can anyone with a measurable IQ have done such a thing?), BUT any Dem is better than any Rethug, and Northam is prochoice. I really hope the Virginia Resistance will push back against anything we don’t like.

    Read a very disquieting article via Twitter yesterday. It was on Alternet and naturally I can’t remember the title or the name of the article. The article made the point that Germans in the 1930s didn’t rise up and protest against Hitler because the rise of fascism was both insidious and incremental. Every day brought some disquieting law or rule or pronouncement to the point where people were saying, “Well, all right, but this is bound to be the end of it.” But it never was! Now we have a list of “forbidden” words such as “fetus,” “vulnerable,” and “transgender.” What next? Is he going to shut down the newspapers? Not that the MSM is any good, but a lot of people do rely on them.

    It is frightening: the suppression of the black vote, the absolutely travesty of ignoring PR and VI, the fascist nature of the police force (“Shoot any African-American male who is alive and handcuff African-American children”), the absolute dismissal of fossil-fueled climate change—we are on the road to Nazi America, I fear. Somehow we have to stop it, but how? As we know, a lot can happen in a year. I’m not even sure we’ll have mid-term elections at this point.

    • I saw the disappointment with Northam on Twitter yesterday and I hope that people hold their fire until they see what he has in mind. In New York and California people can demand purity but the blueing of Virginia only reaches to statewide offices – there are still a lot of Republicans in the state legislature who can scuttle any Northam initiatives and that would not be very productive. He did tweet out that he was committed to expanding Medicaid so he is not flip flopping. The expansion just may be a Virginia-flavored expansion like some of the red and reddish states did.

      I admit to having some concerns about the right-wing shift in attitude towards “what would be so bad about having a dictator?”. But the right-wing’s numbers are shrinking. One survey reported yesterday showed that even older Americans (not us, those crazy Fox News viewers!) want Democrats to run Congress. Republicans are doing everything they can to become a minority party and if we can take back Congress we can stop some of the bad stuff and hang on until 2020. That is what keeps me going.

  5. Very overcast day – if I get a whole KWH today I’ll be lucky unless this clears off later – but I got over 7 yesterday and the m-t-d is 107.6 – still can make the 200 if today is the only one this overcast for the rest of the month. Got my household stuff done and all the furniture moved and ornaments out and stuff like that. Just waiting for the family to start showing up – which should be any minute now – to go get the tree.

    Today I am pushing the evil acts of the Evil Ones to the back of my mind. My family is here and barring some allergies healthy. We are celebrating the Winter Solstice by whatever name we wish to call that celebration – with food and greenery and decorations that are links to memories of celebrations gone by and people also gone by. We do this in the love for each other and the faith that the Light will come again in all Its manifestations. Tomorrow, act of Faith performed, we will go back to whatever we are doing to fight the Evil Ones and protect everybody. For now, the Dark is coming to its annual end, the Light is returning as it annually does. The Wheel keeps turning and in doing so producing the Energy that is Life.

    I probably won’t be back online today – have a good one and Bright the Day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

    • Thanks bfitz, enjoy your day with your family.

      We are celebrating the Winter Solstice by whatever name we wish to call that celebration – with food and greenery and decorations that are links to memories of celebrations gone by and people also gone by. We do this in the love for each other and the faith that the Light will come again in all Its manifestations.

      • {{{princesspat}}} – it was a good day. Of course I’ll be eating the leftovers into the new year – LOL – but it was a very good day. I hope yours goes at least as well if not better. moar {{{HUGS}}}

  6. Good morning, 46 and raining in Bellingham. We’re enjoying a quiet morning, but another busy day is nudging at me. I always enjoy wrapping packages once I stop procrastinating and just do it but old habits are slow to change.

    Best wishes to all for a peaceful day.

  7. Good morning, meesers! Monday …

    It is 32 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 39. Mostly cloudy skies with foggy patches this morning.

    John McCain went home to Arizona to spend the holidays with his family. My feeling is that he is going home to die and doesn’t want to do it in Washington DC where the Senate ghouls will come to his deathbed wanting to wheel him into the well of the Senate so that his last vote is recorded as voting to take health care away from millions. His absence will not change the votes – it will just be 51 to 48 instead of 52 to 48. I was watching the attempt to shame Bob Corker into reversing his vote via use of the #CorkerKickback hashtag – pointing out that he got a $14 million payoff to switch from no to yes. Really, why would he be ashamed to claim that cash? He is retiring and the people he knows socially and professionally will admire his chutzpah in committing theft in broad daylight, not shun him. And the attempt to “shame” Mitch McConnell into delaying the vote until Doug Jones is seated – by showing old clips of him from 2010 demanding that the voters be respected? HAHAHAHAHAHA! Puh-lease. I keep trying to understand why Susan Collins switched from “don’t destroy the ACA and slash Medicare” to “this is fine”. There is some dynamic I don’t understand. It probably has to do with my not being a Republican and not being soulless.

    I want to see the transition emails!! How much do you want to bet that they discussed how their main goal related to personnel was to put in place people who will focus on destroying the legacy of Barack Obama? The list of people on the Presidential Transition Team is interesting. One of them is the Tennessee Representative, Marsha Blackburn, who wants to run for Corker’s seat. I hope the entire transition team gets indicted for failure to report the crime of treason if they were cc’ed on any of those emails. To have the administration collapse because of emails would be karmic justice.

    See all y’all later!

  8. Good Monday morning Meese


  9. Upper 40s, high in the 60s — supposed to be thunderstorms tomorrow. While we’re in drought & need the rain, I wish I could send it to California. I’m really hoping Mueller gives the nation a Christmas gift this week. We need something to give us hope. Playing The Blackout in my head: “when the lights go out, don’t you ever doubt, the light that we can really be”

  10. Good morning, Meese, and happy Moon Day. It’s a fair morning here with cirrostratus clouds against the blue. Current temp. is 32 F., going up to 54 F. That’s good, because I may be able to walk Mr. Toddler home from his day care house. I have to leave here at 11:30 to drive to Arlington.

    No major news this weekend, but disquieting rumors have circulated, as others have noted. Will have to try to put it out of my mind. So busy trying to get ready for Christmas, a week from today, that I’m going to beg my trainer for the week off from training. I know it’s not good to skip exercise, but I honestly don’t see how we’re going to be ready in time.

    Wishing everyone a good day!

  11. 43 at dawn and overcast at the moment, heading for 57 and may (or may not) clear off later. only got 1.7 KWHs yesterday and the m-t-d is 109. Clear skies and we will make 200, clouds and we won’t – but we’re over 3.98 MWHs for the y-t-d and that’s more than I use, so I’m good.

    Evil Ones still being Evil. The rest of us still trying to stop them. Nothing new under the sun. And we will – at least for a time. The sooner we do, the less damage and the fewer people will die. This is the way of things. So we will do our duty and do our best and keep on keepin’ on. Because that’s what we do.

    Interesting thing – yesterday my kids were helping me set up my very first Twitter account – with the most private settings they could come up with – and we found that my email address was already attached to a Twitter account. Somebody who gave the name of Salili Harhay apparently created it and uses/d the Twitter name/ handle of 1951 Bfitz. My kids unattached my email from that account (I think/I hope) and they tried to track down that person’s name – the search led to a bunch of foreign language sites, very few of which use a European alphabet – so goddess only knows what’s been tweeted out apparently from me until yesterday when my kids pulled the plug on it. sigh.

    Otherwise the family celebration was full of food and tree decorating and games and fun – but I’m getting too old to deal with the under-10, had-half-a-pound-of-candy-before-dinner group. sigh. They’ll out grow it. Their older cousins did. :) music, even canned, hearth and home, family and food are the essence of celebration, of Life itself. Everything else is decoration. And we had some lovely decorations on the Douglas fir now in pride of place in the living room.

    Gotta get back to work. Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

    • I hate being dyslexic – the person who was using my email for a Twitter account was Silala, not Salili. sigh.

    • How to we find you on twitter bfitz? Alarming your email address was being used by someone else.

      • I’m still bfitzinAR – I really don’t know how to search for people on Twitter and my kids may have set it up so that only people I’m following can find and follow me. They said they set the privacy as tight as they knew how. So now I’m trying to find folks I want to follow so they can follow me. LOL. And yes, very alarming.

          • Thanks – I’m now up to following 28 and 18 following me :) – and already having trouble handling the information overload. With all the retweets it’s coming through faster than I can ‘like’ everything. LOL

          • Yikes! You probably shouldn’t treat your Twitter timeline like your DK follows – where you have to rec everything from your peeps. You will never be able to like them all.

            Here is how I do Twitter: I open it when I have time to follow my timeline, I retweet the important ones, like/bookmark ones I like or want to follow-up on, save off articles to Pocket, then close it. I probably scan back 20 at the most. I quickly discovered that there are a lot of repeats (some accounts tweet out their stories several times a day) and that most of the really good ones will be retweeted into my timeline again. If not, oh well! I think the “oh well” part is what traps people. You don’t need to read every tweet (and can’t) and letting go is very difficult when these things appear to be addressed to you. They aren’t.

            Anyway, that’s my advice. I am glad you got on Twitter – I think you will find it helps you stay in contact with people. I hope your kids opened up your DMs to people you follow. It is like a “private” chat that you can use to visit with friends. Good luck!

          • That’s very good advice. :) – even better since I didn’t get on Twitter to get all the information I’m being deluged with, I got on Twitter to be able to connect with my friends I’ve been cut off from. I can DM – although I haven’t initiated one, I’ve received and responded to several from “Mei-Mei” – and as I figure out what I’m doing I’ll probably use that a lot, especially for any discussions that are best private. I haven’t retweeted anything so far because as best I can figure out there’s nobody on “my” list who isn’t on everybody else’s list.

            Thank you for your help and advice – on all things technical :) – and {{{HUGS}}}

      • I’m not sure. They/the program did ask at one point in the process if the existing account was my account and when I clicked “no” that’s what disassociated my email from that account – which allowed me to create my own account. Does that work for reporting or is there another process for reporting things like that? {{{HUGS}}}

  12. Good morning, 44 and cloudy in Bellingham. Not much new from me, just another slow start to another busy day. I hope to have the gifting part of Christmas done today, then I can slow down and enjoy the rest of the week.

    Take care everyone.

  13. Good morning, meese! Tuesday …

    It is 37 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 43. Sunny skies are in the forecast.

    People need to keep at their Representatives and raise a ruckus about the tax cut bill. Susan Collins, based on her floor speech in support of the bill, apparently got a visit from the ghost of David Stockman Past and believes the out-and-out lie that tax cuts for the wealthy and corporations creates jobs. I suspect the reason that all Republicans are coming home to papa is because it finally sets the stage for destroying earned benefits, the most reliable indicator that someone is a Republican first and a decent human being second. Republicans are making no bones about the fact that once they empty the treasury they will have to cut Social Security and Medicare to balance the budget:

    The idea is to “starve the beast,” Rep. Mark Sanford (R-SC) says. The tax bill, according to Sanford, is a “bet” to grow the economy. But the real deficit hawkishness comes with government spending. “Will [the tax bill] help on the margin? Yes. Will it do as much as people advertise? Probably no,” Sanford said. “The real conundrum that we still have to deal with if you really care about debt and deficit is spending, and nobody is addressing that in town.” It’s a line of messaging Republicans have escalated in the past weeks. Their tax bill doesn’t have the deficit problem; it’s the other stuff, they say.

    But the real tell from that article is this:

    One GOP lawmaker said Trump told him that he’d be willing to touch Social Security and Medicare “on the first day of his second term,”

    The tax cut bill is an attack on Social Security and Medicare. Period. Anyone who votes for it is voting to push millions of older Americans into poverty.

    See all y’all later!

  14. It’s a toasty warm Tuesday here in Saugerties – at 39 degrees
    Today is my last class – final exams, and then once they are graded – final grades and I’m done. I spent a lot of time yesterday fielding complaints about grades students go on their last paper – I’m sure I’ll get more.
    Grumble – if you are asked to write a paper – and told that it must be six pages minimum why would you expect to get a top grade if you turned in 5…or 6 pages triple-spaced with huge breaks between paragraphs?

    Looking at twitter – here’s the latest on PR

    On a lighter note – this made me grin

    • Ha! Some things never change “6 pages triple-spaced with huge breaks between paragraphs”. Evergreen!

      I just saw the Refugees International report on NPR and tweeted it out; we should be embarrassed … but we won’t be. I noticed that the Republicans stuck an $80 billion disaster relief package into the must-pass-by-Friday funding bill. I haven’t looked at the details (the story is up in a tab) but I suspect this is another sweetener added to get Democratic Party votes for a bill that will not include DREAMer protections. The funding bill will include suspending the PAYGO so that Medicare is not cut next year as part of the sequester, it will include Susan Collins’ ACA “fixes” and it may include CHIP (I can’t remember). Can Democrats vote against it because it doesn’t save DACA kids? It will be a tough call because this is really our only leverage. Republicans are saying that they can wait on DACA because the repeals won’t take effect until March. Actually, that is not true – protections are dropping off every day and the March date is simply when all of the DREAMers face deportation. One Republican Senator even had the cajones to say that “maybe Donald Trump will extend the date”. Lying sack of crap! He will do nothing to back off his signature policy of destroying the lives of immigrants.

  15. Good morning, Meese. Looks rather dim and quiet outside my window. In keeping with our heat wave in NoVa, it’s 35 F. now, going up to 58 F. later. It’ll be 70 F. on Christmas Day, as usual. No white Christmas for us!

    Another busy day but at least today I can stay home and concentrate on getting the house in shape. Very disturbed about the Tax Kill Bill. I hate Republican legislators.

    Wishing all a good day.

  16. Slept badly — it has warmed up, but will cool down this weekend so I’m leaving the flannel sheet on the bed. More rain today, which I really wish was in California instead. Not going to think about the vote on the tax scam. I haven’t listened to any Christmas music yes, what with the new U2 album & all, but here’s I Believe In Father Christmas.

  17. 53 at dawn, still is, and not expected to move much today. Overcast – not so bad the PV system stayed in night mode but only generating a bare trickle (as in could run the lights in my house but nothing else) – got just a hair under 6 KWHs yesterday and the current m-t-d is 115 KWHs. Still barely possible to make 200 for the month but getting less likely. ‘sposed to rain tonight about the time I get home from work and into the morning – we shall see. We could use the rain – but if it’s not going to rain until after dark anyway, I could certainly use some sunshine!

    Dealing with the flip side of Denise’s grading/student problem – a kid on scholarship and newly accepted into a sorority whose last 3 tests for some esoteric computer-glitch reason didn’t show up in the grading system. She’s going to lose her scholarship and get bounced from the sorority if we can’t get this resolved by the 26th – which truly means by the 21st as we aren’t going to be open after that. I’m trying to track down the instructor, who of course left as soon as she got her grades in, and told the kid to document the problem with the grading system and email it to the instructor, the dept. chair, the student’s dean, the sorority, and the scholarship office. Hopefully we’ll get this resolved today.

    Evil Ones do evil because they are greedy – they’re “psy-vamps – they feed off other folks’ pain and despair – and aren’t content with the normal amounts of it there will always be. Calling on their “better natures” is ridiculous. They don’t have better natures. In fact they laugh delightedly at such calls since it tells them where the strongest pain and despair are so they can hit it again. Stopping and blocking them is possible and we will do it – but not using any method that would work on good people doing harmful things because they think those things are the least harmful of all the choices they’ve been given. So we keep on keepin’ on – resist, block, push back – and win elections. And we will take care of the harmed folks in our communities as best we can until we can stop and get rid of those causing the harm. That is our duty and our joy. Has been done, can be done, will be done.

    Seriously got to get back to work. Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

    • I commented on a friend’s FB comment about this: where’s Robin Hood when you need him? I’m only half kidding. I’m going to have a Robin Hood-ish film fest: find a good old b&w Robin Hood, Trading Places, Sneakers, and the TV series Leverage. Since there’s no justice in the real world, I’ll take mine on the small screen.

      • {{{anotherdemocrat}}} – when Justice and Mercy don’t seem to exist in real life we must turn to fiction and fantasy to remind us that they do exist and they can exist in real life – so that then we have the energy to make them exist in real life. I used to teach (at least I hope they understood it) that with a concept you can do anything, without the concept you can do nothing. Enjoy reminding yourself of the concepts of Justice and Mercy. moar {{{HUGS}}}

  18. Good morning, 42 and raining in Bellingham. I’m later than usual this morning, but I needed to sleep and I did! Between deleting things and doing things I think I’ve finally got the Christmas list under control. So today I can focus on my desk, write a few cards, and finish wrapping gifts.

    Take care everyone.

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