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BeyondGeography's Journal
BeyondGeography's Journal
January 29, 2024

The Audacity of E. Jean Carroll

Today she’s typically described as a former advice columnist — but that term doesn’t really do justice to E. Jean Carroll’s career pre-Donald Trump. Long before she was one of the longest-serving advice columnists in America, Ms. Carroll blazed trails as a gonzo-style journalist The Times once called “feminism’s answer to Hunter Thompson.”

She profiled Lyle Lovett and went camping with the notorious New York curmudgeon Fran Lebovitz for a cover story in Outside. She wrote a famous piece on Dan Rather for Esquire, appeared in the “Best American Crime Writing,” and was the first female contributing editor at Playboy — back when people really did read it for the articles.

…as I sat in court in Manhattan last week, watching Mr. Trump glare and mumble at the back of Ms. Carroll’s head — she sat two rows in front of him, pin straight in her chair, the first time she’s been near this man in nearly 30 years — I couldn’t stop thinking that this trial was also about something else: the value of a woman, long past middle age, who dared to claim she indeed still had value. Just how radical was it for Ms. Carroll, 80, to demand that she was worth something?

…When I talked to Deborah Tuerkheimer, a law professor at Northwestern whose book “Credible” examines why we disbelieve allegations of sexual abuse, she told me that Mr. Trump’s team was “trying to show that she was already past her prime,” that she had “withered on the vine and so whatever was left of her wasn’t enough to warrant a hefty damage award.” She also told me there is no precedent for a case like Ms. Carroll’s, in part because it is so unusual for a woman her age to come forward. Part of that has to do with stigma (people are deeply uncomfortable with the combination of older women and sexual assault, and Ms. Carroll was 52 when the assault took place) and also with statutes of limitations. But it makes her “all the more radical,” Ms. Tuerkheimer said — an 80-year-old woman proclaiming she wasn’t done yet, that her reputation was worth something and that she was owed money from the person who’d trashed it.

More at gift link https://www.nytimes.com/2024/01/29/opinion/e-jean-carroll-audacity-donald-trump.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share&referringSource=articleShare&sgrp=c-cb
January 28, 2024

Black pastors pressure Biden to call for a ceasefire in Gaza

As the Israel-Hamas war enters its fourth month, a coalition of Black faith leaders is pressuring the Biden administration to push for a cease-fire — a campaign spurred in part by their parishioners, who are increasingly distressed by the suffering of Palestinians and critical of the president’s response to it. More than 1,000 Black pastors representing hundreds of thousands of congregants nationwide have issued the demand. In sit-down meetings with White House officials, and through open letters and advertisements, ministers have made a moral case for President Biden and his administration to press Israel to stop its offensive operations in Gaza, which have killed thousands of civilians. They are also calling for the release of hostages held by Hamas and an end to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.The effort at persuasion also carries a political warning, detailed in interviews with a dozen Black faith leaders and their allies. Many of their parishioners, these pastors said, are so dismayed by the president’s posture toward the war that their support for his re-election bid could be imperiled.

The coalition of Black clergy pushing Mr. Biden for a cease-fire is diverse, from conservative-leaning Southern Baptists to more progressive nondenominational congregations in the Midwest and Northeast…“Black clergy have seen war, militarism, poverty and racism all connected,” said Barbara Williams-Skinner, co-convener of the National African American Clergy Network, whose members lead roughly 15 million Black churchgoers. She helped coordinate recent meetings between the White House and faith leaders. “But the Israel-Gaza war, unlike Iran and Afghanistan, has evoked the kind of deep-seated angst among Black people that I have not seen since the civil rights movement.”

…the pastors’ Palestinian allies in the United States, Gaza and the West Bank have sought their assistance on behalf of civilians suffering under Israel’s counteroffensive. And the pastors have gotten an earful from their own congregants, especially younger churchgoers, about the conflict and Mr. Biden’s full-throated support for Israel. That sentiment more broadly reflects a strong sense of solidarity between Black Americans and Palestinians that has shaped opinion since the war began.

“We see them as a part of us,” said the Rev. Cynthia Hale, the founder and senior pastor of Ray of Hope Christian Church in Decatur, Ga. “They are oppressed people. We are oppressed people.”

More at gift link https://www.nytimes.com/2024/01/28/us/politics/black-pastors-biden-gaza-israel.html?smid=nytcore-ios-share&referringSource=articleShare
January 25, 2024

The GOP frontrunner rage tweeted 37 times late last night about E. Jean Carroll

And his lawyers are still trying to convince him not to testify today.

January 15, 2024

Pastime Paradise - Stevie Wonder

January 14, 2024

Trump has been unsuccessfully trying to impersonate a sane human lately

Because “unapologetically insane” has narrowed his base to the point where even he understands the need to change his tune.

Stuff like this, for example.


There’s no mistaking the contempt a fair chunk of the Republican base has for him.

Stuff like this, for example:

Back in Waukee, Brad Remsburg was wearing a North Face puffy vest, sitting in a booth and explaining why he liked Haley — she was an alternative to the former president.

“I will not vote for Trump,” explained Remsburg, who’s in medical sales and was joined by his son, a former Iowa State offensive lineman.

The elder Remsburg said he was basically a Republican until Trump came along and is now hoping there’s a path back.

Same with Bruce Norquist, who was a table over and retired as an Army lieutenant colonel at NorthCom and now works in computer security.

“Trump is a fool, he’s too divisive,” said Norquist. (An Aberdeen, S.D., native, Norquist first came to Washington as an intern for Aberdeen’s own Tom Daschle.)


Anecdotal stuff, admittedly, and those pro-Haley Iowans could change their tune come November but Trump Fatigue is real. And we know from experience that his inner child will guide him to even lower depths whenever the next stress waves hit.

Not that I’m kicking back, but I like where we stand.

January 6, 2024

Donna Summer - She Works Hard For The Money Backstory

November 26, 2023

Bradley Cooper conducts Mahler's Second in Maestro


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