Special to the FreePress

Editor's Note: Thanks to a secret satirical recording device implanted into Donald Trump's hair, an actual fake transcript has emerged from the fake president's recent meeting with his actual owner, Vladimir Putin. Reader discretion is advised:

TRUMP: Well, Putie, I think we can talk frankly now. There will be no recording of this part of our conversation.

PUTIN (chuckling): Right, Donald. I would never record anything between us without letting you know first. At the KGB we made it a strict policy to honor the privacy of all citizens, Russian, American, Chechnyan and, of course, Siberian, where so many of our great patriots are still so happy to do volunteer labor.

TRUMP: Well first I must thank you for putting me in the White House. I could never have stolen the 2016 election without you.

Trump and Clinton each at a podium looking like they are yelling

Hillary Clinton's margin of victory in the 2016 vote count continues to climb, at this point well over a million. 

But her impending defeat in the Electoral College comes with familiar signs that the election was stripped and flipped.

These indicators include the realities of pre- and post-election polling; the massive stripping of primarily black, Hispanic and Asian-American voters from computer generated registration rolls mostly maintained by private partisan companies; unverifiable "black box" electronic voting machines and central tabulators, also mostly manufactured and maintained by private corporations, and much more.

Were this election held in any other country, the US State Department and independent monitors from around the world would denounce it as a fraud, and contemplate international intervention. 

The Electoral College

Feminism has a crucial role to play in modern life, but I sometimes wish it would leave our fairy tales alone. The results of its revisionist meddling are too often unconvincing and unsatisfying.

Remember last year’s Maleficent? It turned an age-old story on its head by revealing that the fairy (Angelina Jolie) who turned a princess into a “Sleeping Beauty” was not evil at all. No, she was merely wronged and misunderstood. Worst of all, we learned that the somnambulant princess could not be awakened by a kiss from the handsome prince, but only by a motherly peck from that same fairy.

How heartwarming. And how utterly unromantic.

Thank goodness Disney’s new live-action version of Cinderella doesn’t wear its feminism on its sleeve. It has nods to modern sensibilities, to be sure, but they’re handled with a lighter touch.

A bunch of people holding signs and facing the camera posing under a tree

Friday, November 24, 12noon-1pm
250 E Wilson Bridge Rd, Worthington
Rally FRIDAY!! (The day after Thanksgiving.)
No one will say we aren't tenacious. Even during Thanksgiving week when the office is closed, rally outside Tiberi's to show we mean business! All signs welcome, especially about the tax bill.

The star-studded AFI FEST 2017, one of L.A.’s top annual film festivals, highlighted racism this year,with features and documentaries about African Americans, Native Americans, Australian Aborigines, etc. The film fete’s director, Jacqueline Lyanga, a young Black woman born in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, helped bestow an international vibe on the Nov. 9-16 annual extravaganza, held this year in Hollywood. Amidst Tinseltown’s sturm und drang about race, gender discrimination and sexual harassment, the Festival included powerful films about racism, highlighted female talents and screened other politically-themed pictures. Here are some highlights:

 

Two months after the Sept. 20 landfall of Hurricane Maria, Puerto Rico—like the nearby Virgin Islands—is still in a state of horrifying devastation. The help being offered by the Trump administration is thin to the point of being cruel and unusual.

At this point one must ask: Is Trump’s astonishing lack of aid part of a larger plan to cleanse the islands of their native populations, drive down real estate values and create a billionaire’s luxury hotel-casino-prostitution playground à la Cuba before the revolution?

In other words: ethnic cleansing for the superrich.

There is just one piece of good news: Rep. Ted Lieu, D-Calif., has joined Rep. Stacey Plaskett of the Virgin Islands in proposing that Puerto Rico’s electric grid be rebuilt with wind, solar and a network of micro-grids. More than half the original electric grid is still not functioning, with frequent blackouts occurring in areas where the grid is operational.

OK, here’s a good one: What’s the position of women in the antiwar movement?

This was circa 1967, when I was a college kid just coming of age, psychologically and politically. I was a hippie. I had stopped cutting my hair. I’d discovered pot. And I was outraged by the Vietnam War. I was also still swaddled in the sexism of the day, and I laughed knowingly at the answer to this little joke:

Prone.

By the early ’70s, women’s rights emerged as a movement and a lot of men began to see that sort of humor in a stunningly different context. I went through a year of shame and shock as I became aware of my own sexism — “you gotta control your woman” — and did my best to embrace feminism and surrender the stupid male birthright that this was my world more than it was hers . . . that I was the boss, that sex was something to be pried loose from her.

hose aren’t the only questions raised by the surprise assault accusation by radio performer Leeann Tweeden against comedian-turned-US Senator Al Franken, but they might be enough to offend everyone. And everyone probably should be offended by one or another aspect of this story – a dicey opinion to have so early in a story, but let’s look closely at what we know now (late on November 16).

Start with the accusations: There are two, and they are quite different in important respects. The two alleged incidents occurred during a two-week USO tour to Kuwait, Iraq, and Afghanistan in December 2006. The accusations of 2017 first appeared on a KABC website. She works for KABC, which ran the story under Leeann Tweeden’s byline and with the fundamentally problematical headline:

Childish oversimplification seems to be spreading throughout public discourse. Maybe it’s the character limits on tweets. Maybe it’s the second limits between commercials. Maybe it’s two-party politics. Maybe it’s an excess of information. Maybe it’s presidential example. Maybe it is, in fact, thousands of different things, because reality is actually very complicated.

In any case, the phenomenon I’m observing has been growing for some time. I recently found a professor willing to publicly debate me on the question of whether war is ever justified. Now I’m having the hardest time finding a university willing to host the debate or even to recognize the concept of civil nonviolent debate. But where would anyone go to observe such a thing? Not television. Not most text journalism. Not social media.

“There’s no difference between the Democrats and the Republicans.”

“The Democrats and the Republicans have nothing in common.”

These are both ridiculously stupid statements, as are these:

“Women always tell the truth about sexual assault.”

“Women always lie about sexual assault.”

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