Lee Wochner: Writer. Director. Writing instructor. Thinker about things.


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Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

(Not) government work

Friday, August 3rd, 2018

It isn’t exactly a revelation that the Trump disintegration — er, “administration” —  doesn’t know how government works (or, should work). But here’s the latest evidence:

  1. The Environmental Protection Agency estimates that eliminating mileage rules on new cars would effectively reduce the ownership costs of a new vehicle by $2,340, or $468 a year over five years. Even if it’s true that this represents a cost saving, the job of the EPA is to protect the environment, not manage household budgets.  Or, at least, the job of the EPA used to be to protect the environment. (And the EPA, we should note, was started under executive order by a Republican president.)
  2. The Trump disintegration is also now saying that it should be the job of the ACLU to find those parents that the administration forcibly separated from children and then deported. Why a cadre of lawyers who work to protect our civil rights should do this — or even how — is anyone’s guess.

Given that this government isn’t doing its appropriate work as a government, it makes you wonder what they are doing.

 

Acceptance

Tuesday, June 5th, 2018

My sons were watching “Defiance” last night, the movie where Jewish brothers in Nazi-occupied Eastern Europe escape into the Belarussian forests in order to protect themselves and about one thousand Jewish non-combatants from the Nazis.

I reminded them, “Remember, there are good people on both sides.”

They seemed skeptical. So old-school.

Standards

Saturday, May 19th, 2018

For the record, as an anti-monarchist, I dutifully boycotted that royal wedding today. We Americans did fight a war over this sort of thing, you know. My feelings about it haven’t changed.

And now, an op ed from the most naive man in America

Monday, April 30th, 2018

This Republican pundit is shocked to learn that his side’s media outlets no longer want any content that isn’t 100% supportive of Trump.

“If, among those who supposedly cherish freedom of expression, certain widespread viewpoints become taboo, where does that leave us? In a dishonest media atmosphere.”

Gee, I hope this movement doesn’t leak over to Fox News, which always has news we can trust. Thank God we have a press secretary we can count on to share the truth with us.

p.s. Please note that this guy’s outrage manifested itself on the day he realized he’d lost his paycheck.

Today’s political prediction

Monday, March 5th, 2018

There will be no steel tariff.

It’s purely a political ploy to swing unemployed Pennsylvania steelworkers back to voting Republican in the March 13th special Congressional election.

Once that’s over, the issue will magically go away.

Supporting evidence:  Zero reaction in the stock market today. Traders know this isn’t for real.

Honest answers (the latest in a series)

Wednesday, January 31st, 2018

A website form just asked me, “Is there anything else you’d like us to know?” So I answered: “Trump is terrible through and through.”

The physics of physique

Wednesday, January 17th, 2018

 

 

TrumpWeight

Sports Illustrated shows what 239 pounds look like. Spoiler alert: It doesn’t look like Donald Trump.

 

A suggestion for GOP members of Congress who oppose Trump

Tuesday, October 24th, 2017

Maybe stay and fight?

Even in an election you’re going to lose. Because then we’d really understand that, for you, it’s about country over party.

Or, how about this: switch party affiliation. Now. While you’re still in office.

Because, as someone noted on Twitter:

If McCain, Corker, and Jeff Flake want to stop Trump, they should LEAVE HIS PARTY.

52 Republicans in Senate

52 – 3 = 49 = no more majority

That’d make for real impact.

Our health care system

Saturday, October 7th, 2017

The other day, I finally got in to see my doctor. I say “finally” because I’d waited three weeks for the appointment. Yes, it was mostly because of something routine that I was going (a physical check-up), but I do have this little rash — nothing extreme, but something small and itchy that doesn’t seem to be going away. I actually thought that while waiting for three weeks to see him about it, it’d melt back into wherever it came from, but that didn’t happen. He looked at it, prescribed some sort of heavy-duty two-day antibiotic and also a cream, and said he’d refer me to a dermatologist. Yesterday, when the referral from the dermatologist came in the mail, I called right away to schedule an appointment.

Sometimes, the answering folks at medical practices are friendly, sometimes they’re helpful, and sometimes, rarely, they’re friendly and helpful. The woman on the phone made no pretense of being friendly or helpful. Answering the phone (on the twelfth ring — but I was determined) was the last thing on her mind. I gave her my info and told her what I was looking for.

“Our next appointment is January 9th,” she said.

“January 9th! Today’s October 6th.”

“I know.”

“That’s three months from now!”

“Yes. Should I schedule you?”

I was considering taking the appointment for three months hence — because who knew what would happen if I didn’t take this one? — but then happened to look down at the authorization that had been mailed to me.  “My authorization expires on December 15th!” I told her.

“Yeah, that happens,” she said airily. “You’ll have to go back to see your doctor. Ask for an extension.”

I said, “Goodbye” and hung up.  (Note the absence of “thank you” — because there was nothing to be thankful for.) Then I thought, “Maybe the rash will just go away by then.”

And, really, isn’t that the hope of every HMO and every insurance company? That whatever thing is ailing you, and maybe you yourself, will just… go… away?

Is Hurricane Harvey the result of global warming?

Tuesday, August 29th, 2017

“To take but one additional case study close at hand, it is now estimated that New York City will suffer ‘500-year’ floods once every 25 years. And sea-level rise is more dramatic elsewhere, which means that storm surges will be distributed unequally, too; in some places storms on that scale will hit even more frequently. The result is a terrifying, radically accelerated experience of extreme weather — centuries worth of natural disaster compressed into just a decade or two.”

Here, you be the judge.