Education: Upcoming Jewish Holidays

If you have Jewish friends, you may be hearing them talk of the new year right now. No, they’re not crazy. We’re entering the time in the Jewish calendar that starts the new year, otherwise known as Rosh Hashanah, followed by Yom Kippur.

Rosh Hashanah is a happy, festive holiday. It is a time to look back on the past year and make resolutions for the following year. It’s also a time to begin mental preparation for Yom Kippur, the day of atonement (but we’ll talk about that later).

Rosh Hashanah starts at sundown the day before the actual day and ends at sundown the day following. This year, for us Gentiles, that means sundown on September 20th through Sundown September 22nd.

SHOULD YOU EXPECT YOUR JEWISH FRIENDS TO “SKIP” THIS HOLIDAY IF YOU PLAN SOMETHNG ELSE? No. While it’s not a solemn day, it is a special time, so be mindful.

What can you say to your Jewish friend during Rosh Hashanah?
• Happy New Year
• Shanah Tovah
• Blessed Shanah Tovah
• Chag Samayach

Because this is a celebration, being invited as a non-Jewish person to a Jewish person’s home to celebrate Rosh Hashanah means that you are welcome and the invitation should be honored and accepted.

Yom Kippur, on the other hand is a solemn day that no matter what your Jewish friends may practice in their life, this is the one time they usually will not skip or slough off on. There are a few that do, though.

Yom Kippur is generally marked as a day of fasting and repentance. It’s meant to reconcile for mistakes made in the last year. Most (not all) Jewish people will take off work or school for this day.

As a non-Jewish person, during Yom Kippur, always be mindful and respectful of this day for your Jewish friends. Wishing them “Chag Samayach” or “Tzom Kal” (pronounced Ts-ohm kael, and which means “easy fast”)

This year, Yom Kippur begins at sundown on September 29th and ends at sundown on September 30th.

With thanks to Sarah and Dana for writing this piece together for us!

Rise Up

Call your representatives. This is about as dangerous as it gets. 

Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at 1-202-224-3121 and/or text RESIST to 50409 to engage the ResistBot to fax letters to your senators for you.

Demand an independent investigation.

Daily Post – 5/5/17 – After the AHCA

Good Morning FAM!

This might be the single most important day in FAMs history, as we take specific, unified, direct and unrelenting action TOGETHER against the Representatives who betrayed the American People in yesterday’s Health Care vote.

In order to MAXIMIZE our momentum—all actions to take are at the beginning of this post.

We need each and every one of you to commit to taking ALL of these actions to the best of your ability.

Are you with us? Lets. Do. This.

**Make sure to read the whole action post for resources and coupons for maximum impact**

**No one, under any circumstances, should threaten, demean, abuse, or insinuate violence against ANYONE we will be reaching out to. We don’t need that kind of attention and it undercuts our cause.**


Starting today, and every day afterwards, we will be executing on an all-out onslaught of contacting the 217 Republicans who voted for the atrocity of the AHCA.

1. We will start with the Michigan Republicans who voted YES. They are as follows: Jack Bergman, Bill Huizenga, Justin Amash, John Moolenaar, Fred Upton, Mike Bishop, Tim Walberg, Dave Trott and Paul Mitchell. We are looking for a list of just these folks for ease, but until then, use the link below.

2. Next, we will THANK the 20 Republican representatives who voted NO on the AHCA. They can be found at the following link.

3. Finally, we will contact the rest of the Republican representatives who voted yes. They can also be found at this link.

Each representative should be called, emailed, and sent a post card.

Addresses for reps can be found here—Send postcards to their HOME STATE OFFICES first because of some upcoming recesses of the House. Note that you’ll have to click on the reps name to go to their website—from there you may have to do some investigating to find their office addresses but they’re all there:

For the representatives who voted YES, we’ve prepared some post card templates for you, which can be found here:

For the 20 Republicans who voted NO, we’ve created this Thank You Post Card: 

There are a few options for using these templates:

1. Print them yourself at home

2. Print them at a Kinkos/Staples/Copy Center. If you do this option, you should be okay with the drop box links. If you are going to be printing a lot of them, for a local chapter or large group of activists, you can use this coupon for $25 off a $100 print order.

3. Order them using Vista Print. If you do this option, make sure to select a “small” size template when you place the order. You can use this promotion code for 25% off your order: MARKETING25


In order for the ACA to be fully repealed and replaced by the AHCA, the bill must also be voted on by the Senate. The bill requires 51 YAY votes, and with 52 Republicans in the Senate, there is a much smaller margin of error. There are a few things on our side: First is the obvious atrocity that is the AHCA bill specifically relating to pre-existing conditions, high risk pools and the Medicaid expansion that would be phased out. The second is the fact that Senators who are seeking re-election will be keen to not cause waves with their constituents—there is a large correlation between folks who voted for DT and who are counting on him to keep is promise of saving Medicare. The third is there are already some prominent Republican senators who are questioning some of the pillars of the bill. When contacting these senators, please feel free to use the “Baby Bump” post card, found here:

1. Several sources have named specific Republican senators whose constituents will not be happy about the current version of the AHCA. We need to call, email, and send post cards to these senators ASAP. We must make contact every day until this bill dies. These folks are: Bob Portman (OH), Lindsey Graham (SC), and Susan Collins (ME).

2. All Republican Senators must be contacted by us via phone, email, and post-card. A full list of current senators can be found here:

3. Despite the overwhelming outcry from Democratic senators, they require constant outreach affirming their position against this horrible bill. We must call, email, and send post cards to them every day as well. Again, they can be found here:

For these senators, please use this post card template:

Lastly, know this: This fight is FAR FROM OVER and we will not stop until we’ve exhausted every outlet for change we can. We, as a leadership team, are cooking up some more ways for us to be involved on a large scale so stay tuned. In the mean time, we CANNOT let up.

Healthcare Requires Caring

I posted this on my own personal Facebook wall today. I’m reposting here, with some editing, to share with a wider audience. I’m angry. I’m sad. I’m scared. I know I’m not alone in this. – Jennifer

Today, the House is voting for you to lose:

  • out-of-pocket maximums
  • protection for pre-existing conditions
  • protection from lifetime caps
  • access to essential benefits
  • and many other things
  • but some rich people will get a tax cut

Essential benefits are: outpatient care, ER visits, hospitalization, maternity and newborn care, mental health services and addiction treatment, prescription medication, rehabilitation services and devices, laboratory services, preventive services, wellness services, and chronic disease treatment, and pediatric services.

Do not talk to me about free healthcare now. That’s not what this is about. This about the fact that they do not believe that millions of Americans even deserve the right to pay for insurance that will cover their needs without bankrupting them. They do not believe that we deserve access to care that can save our lives.

And do not tell me that there’s always Medicaid if you’re really poor. They’re cutting much of that too.

And the ER? The ER isn’t going to offer chemotherapy, or monthly prescriptions, or preventative scans. The ER is going to patch up what’s bleeding and send us home, where we will wait to die… because that will be the only option left.

This is not about “I don’t want to pay for somebody’s whatever” – this is INSURANCE. Maybe I’d rather not pay for your gallbladder surgery because you ate like crap, and I’d rather not pay for your sixth pregnancy, and you’d rather not pay for my thyroid meds and my annual MRI scans and 3D mammograms, but that’s what insurance is for. We all pay in, and we all get the coverage we need when we need it.

Listen, the ACA has issues. The republican party could have been the heroes. They could have worked to fix the broken portions and been heroes. Instead, they will be responsible for passing this travesty of a bill, and proving, once and for all, that there is no compassion in the republican party. It’s a shame. It really is.

And so help me – if you even consider responding to this with any mention of socialism or the constitution, you may as well just unfriend me now. We are a society, and we look out for each other, or there is no point whatsoever. We have schools and infrastructure and government and there is no reason – NONE – why every American should not have access to quality healthcare – whether that be by paying a reasonable amount for insurance, paying for it through taxes, whatever it takes.

I look at the damage this bill can do to those who are nearest and dearest to me, and I grieve. I grieve, and I am angry and disgusted that we, as a nation, do not see that the health and safety of all of our citizens is vital to our success as a nation.

And if you voted for this party, and you support this, and you think that denying insurance to millions of people is a good thing? Then why are we even having this conversation?

Morning Cup: Compassion

Tuesday, February 14. Yesterday, we learned photographs of top secret matters of international security snapped by members dining near our President at Mar-a-Lago were shared on social media. Early last night, former Goldman-Sachs banker and One West mortgage fiasco leader Steven Mnuchin was voted then sworn in as Treasury Secretary. Late last night we learned that National Security Advisor Michael Flynn had submitted his resignation.

This morning, it is Valentine’s Day.

Good morning, FAM! Given the holiday, we are going to focus on the kind of love FAM specializes in: Compassion. For each other. Here in FAM, and throughout our human web. Remembering love is love, women’s rights are human rights, and no human is illegal.

Not that we aren’t keeping track of that Russia thing, and the widening net of accountability. Nor what is brewing with the ACA behind Republican doors. Nor the fact that Republicans are being remarkably mum about the evolving pattern of disturbing allegations against an increasing number of members of the Trump White House, and are passing through a remarkable amount of unqualified and anti-qualified candidates for cabinet positions.

But, in the ongoing effort to keep each day manageable, we pour our cup, survey the landscape…then direct our attention today to compassion.

And invite you to share how you are practicing compassion as well.

So, add a little extra sugar or honey to your cup this morning. Check out today’s suggested actions.

And fill your activist quiver with postcards and contact info. Cupid arrows today; pointed points tomorrow.




*1* (state)
Following up on yesterday’s reading, contact State Rep. Jim Lower (R-Alma), chair of the Local Government Committee, to oppose HB 4105, which seeks to punish sanctuary cities.

**2** (state)
Contact the head of the House Government Operations Committee, State Rep. Lee Chatfield (R-Levering) in support for both HR 0018, written in consultation with the ACLU, and in support of Jeremy Moss’ resolution denouncing anti-refugee policies.

***3*** (state)
Contact your state representative and senator, and ask for their position on each of these measures (HB 4105, HR 0018, and Moss’ resolution. Let them know your thoughts on each.

(The article we shared yesterday which explains all of the above.)


Ways and Means Committee chair says it will not investigate/call for Trump tax returns. The other two bodies with authority to investigate, the Finance Committee and the Joint Committee on taxation, both headed by Orrin Hatch, have already declined.

In a statement regarding Rep. Pascrell’s request, Chair Brady uses a bit of bombast. Note the comments — constituents and citizens not happy. Note also this transpired before Flynn’s resignation last night.
Steven Mnuchin — Things You Might Not Know, from the Independent

Every executive order to date, from the Atlanta-Journal Constitution…/here-every-exe…/pHETsFIm2nYmj4VWlNHmbK/

Pete Souza is still offering a side of shade with his photograph posts.

Bustle lists Things Dumbledore’s Army Taught Us About Activism

Morning Cup: Accountability

“What does he mean when he says words?”
It is Monday, February 13.  Pitchers and catchers report to spring training today.  The weather is this…it’s that…it’s the other thing.
The press is having as much trouble understanding POTUS45 as we are. Michigan citizens are persisting, nationally and locally.
Welcome to a new week!
We’re going to focus on accountability today.  Taxes.  Russia.  Facts and lies.  And simply showing up to hear the constituents you represent.
Hopefully you’ve had your morning beverage, have fueled up, and started the day in your preferred fashion.  When you’ve time and motivation, take a look at our suggested actions for the day.  Meander through the support readings.
If baseball is something that makes you happy, send up a little cheer that the boys of summer are officially preparing for a new season.
If baseball is not your thing, take a moment to share something that is.  Connecting with happy is something we need to remember to keep doing.  Persistence needs fuel, after all.
*1* (national)
Call your Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee Kevin Brady, (and the entire committee if you have time) to let them know you agree with Rep. Bill Pascrell. Let your representative know you support of Rep. Bill Pascrell’s move to force President Trump to share his tax returns, and want to know if they will be encouraging the Ways and Means Committee to follow Pascrell’s request.
**2** (national)
Another round of postcards to the White House.  Use the same message as before, or one of your own:  “Dear President Trump – I am not a reporter, and I want to see your taxes.”
***3*** (national)
Call your senators and representative to express your continued and escalating concern about inappropriate and potentially compromising entanglements between various members of the administration and Russia.  Ask them what they are doing about this concern, and what they would recommend you do.
(Thus, you register your concern as a constituent, have them specify their own actions — if any — and put them in a position to act as your representative in government.  Which they are.)
Call your representatives.  All of them, national and state level.  Ask them for a schedule of upcoming town halls for the next three months.
(Next week is a recess for Congress, and traditionally a time for holding local meet-and-greets with voters/citizens.  Give a signal you are paying attention.  Make sure they are sharing information — or not.)
“Us and Them”
Another fallout wrinkle in ongoing attempts to have actual contact with representatives.  In Traverse City, the sheriff has been asked to remind visitors that Rep. Jack Bergman’s offices are in a private property building.  Members of Indivisible Leelanau are persisting.
“This isn’t for the Democrats or the Republicans, and it’s not to embarrass anybody,” [Rep. Bill] Pascrell said as quoted in the report. “This is to make sure the American people know the facts, and if there are conflicts, they need to be resolved.”
“If I get a ‘no’ answer on this, I’ll be very honest with you: If these guys think I’m walking away from this, they’re absolutely nuts,” Pascrell said. “The calls we’re getting, the calls other congressmen are getting, it’s unbelievable, we never expected this.”
“But as a first-generation Iraqi immigrant, and as a doctor whose job is to train other doctors, many of them immigrants themselves, I fear that the American dream is corroding. I worry about the impact of President Trump’s travel ban, for the moment blocked by court order, and how the Republican Congress will handle immigration issues.
Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha writes an opinion piece for the New York Times.
The Arab-American News on the immigration ban and related legislation — includes contact information for people to call in support of supportive bills.
How to express love in Arabic.
Tweety tweets and the world leaders who tweet them
Lies and the lying liars that tell them
Words are words and quotes are quotes and misquotes are lies
National Security — Council, and counsel
Newsweek reporter would like to know how cabinet and advisors are vetted, is waiting for an answer.
Insecurity at the National Security Council
MSNBC rounds up Russia entanglement questions.
Remember, 6 different agencies investigating the Russia question.
Democrats call for an investigation into Michael Flynn and whether or not he (illegally) made contact with Russia.
We’d call it “so much awkward” if it weren’t national security involved; photos from Mar-a-Lago, more.
Salon’s look at John Oliver on Trump and lies and mush; links to full video of segment, including clip of reporter on the challenge of covering Trump — “What does he mean when he says words?”
Fairy tales can come true…  Bored Panda looks at Russian photographer Margarita Kareva, who says of herself “I bring Russian fairy tales to life.”
(protect ACA from repeal; timed to coincide with rep recess)
April 22:  March for Science

Morning Cup: Breathe

Good morning! It’s Thursday, February 9th. The east coast is preparing for an abrupt shift in the weather we here in Michigan have already experienced.

In government news…our governor presented his budget yesterday, the vote for Thomas Price (HHS) goes to the senate floor this morning, the eruption over a DJT Nordstrom tweet (retweeted by POTUS45) still rings in our ears…and Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch has called President Trump’s comments on the judiciary “disheartening” and “demoralizing.”

The Army Corps of Engineers granted an easement for the DAPL.

And the Republicans keep handing mobilizing materials to the resistance. “Nonetheless she persisted” is the latest that has spread like wildfire. So incredibly apt. That is exactly what the next few years will reveal: persistence, despite the muck.

We. Will. Persist.

When it comes to actions, we’re going to take a prescriptive breath today. If YOU have actions you’ll be engaging in, please share them in the comments below.

As part of this breath taking, we’d also like to note that we see the Planned Parenthood counter-protests being planned for this Saturday, but wanted to share Planned Parenthood’s official position on protests/demonstrations. Some of you have been noting this in posts, but the gist of it is this: While grateful for support, “Any demonstrations, whether in support of or opposition to Planned Parenthood, are disruptive to daily operations and intimidating for our patients. Patients should always be able to access care at Planned Parenthood without ANY interference.”

They also note that centers will be closed on Saturday (the 11th), so patient access would not be impacted by any activity. And, “We do remind all demonstrators, whether they are detractors or supporters, that they are subject to trespassing and all other applicable laws. Above all else, we ask our supporters not to engage with the opposition, and to remain respectful and peaceful at all times.”

So, pour your cup. Go through the readings. For action, we’re sharing a script the Michigan Resistance is using in support of the FOIA legislation we discussed earlier this week. If you haven’t made that call to your local representative, now’s a good time.


sculpture by Ann Carrington



(Today, a share from Michigan Resist — phone calls in support of FOIA legislation we previously discussed)

Support Bills 4148-4158– These bills increase government transparency. It allows citizens to ask for information from the government. For example, in the Flint water crisis there was no way for citizens (or journalists) to demand information from the government.

Michigan Competitiveness: Committee Clerk: Sondra Gordon 517-373-0910

Representative Chatfield (Chair) 517-373-2629

Representative Lilly (Majority Vice-Chair) (517) 373-0838

Hi, I am calling to ask Representative _____________ to stand up for our democracy and SUPPORT bills 4148 to 4158. Our state government needs more transparency, and Michiganders have the right to know whether ethical and moral standards are being met by our elected officials.

We are one of only two states without these standards of transparency. Stand up for government accountability and support these bills to create a system where we are truly represented and protected from future disasters like the Flint Water Crisis. Thank you.



Governor Snyder has presented his budget.
The Free Press editorial board weighs in, voicing light approval for what they call a bare-bones budget, with positive nods toward Flint and education allocations, yet noting things like Healthy Michigan (our Medicaid expansion) are not addressed.
Senator David Knezek wants to know where the infrastructure investment is.
The Michigan Education Association responds to the budget — “a small step in the right direction,” pleased the School Aid Fund is not being tapped.
Bullet points on the budget from the Free Press.
A summary of the budget from WLUC.

Headline: Trump is Attacking any Institution that Challenges Him (The Atlantic, Feb 5, 2017)
Well then. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch characterizes POTUS45 remarks on the judiciary as “disheartening” and “demoralizing” in a conversation with Sen. Richard Blumenthal.
The New York Times account has a more fulsome recounting of President Trump’s response to the hearings on his self-labeled “immigration ban.” It also uses the word “impugn,” to which we nod.

Elsewhere in judicial news, SPLC president Richard Cohen has released a statement on Jeff Sessions confirmation as U.S. Attorney General:

“We opposed Senator Sessions’ nomination because of his regrettable record on civil rights and his association with extremist anti-immigrant organizations. 

“Now that he has been confirmed as our next attorney general, we hope he surprises us and his other critics by protecting the civil and human rights of all persons in our country.

POTUS45 veracity|mendacity watch
(HINT: Mendacity has an overwhelming lead)

On the use of social media presence (and now potentially passwords) as part of an entry clearance for U.S. visitors. Note that general presence has been part of screening since last summer; it is the addition of requiring passwords as well that is the potential new wrinkle.

Mother Jones thinks the Trump-Russia story has disappeared. We haven’t forgotten. And we won’t let our representatives forget.

Find the Michigan Resistance here.

You can get such unexpected results when a bunch of simple utensils mass together.

Morning Cup: Incrementally

Wednesday, February 8th. 
As we pause and reflect before starting today, remember this about yesterday: For the first time ever, a Vice President had to step in and cast the deciding vote in the Senate for a cabinet nominee. Whatever machinations may or may not be going on, it is clear that the avalanche of communications affected how the Betsy DeVos proceeded. 
It is also clear, at least to those agitating, that the flurry is NOT GOING TO STOP. Sorry, Charlies. 
< fills mug, passes pot > 
Good morning, FAM. What did the past 24 hours bring? 
At least three lies out of POTUS45’s mouth yesterday: About the national murder rate (he said it’s historically high, it’s actually historically low); the slow pace of his cabinet appointees going through (he says his are the slowest ever; actually, that title — so far — goes to Obama’s cabinet); and he claims he never got a negative communication about DAPL (raise your hand if you sent word to him or any federal legislator about opposing DAPL). 
The deplorable Jeff Sessions coming to the Senate floor for a vote today, after a tone deaf move from Mitch McConnell last night that silenced Elizabeth Warren on the debate floor with an accusation of conduct unbecoming a Senator. 
DAPL now expedited thanks to a directive from POTUS45 to the Army Corps of Engineers. They are to move ASAP on an environmental impact statement. 
But we’ve also seen…
Steady pushback from key players in prominent positions and in the grass roots.
Such a commotion made that the current press secretary repeated feels the need to insist protestors are paid to be present. As if.
The official line on the ACA/Obamacare moved from “repeal” to “repair” — and a timeline extended to “at least one year” out. 
< sip from cup >
It may feel daunting at times. But it’s working. WE are working. 
Today, we are officially focusing on Sessions’ nomination (yes, it will likely go through, but not only do we do not approve, we are deeply opposed); water; and watching. 
As always, let us know what you are doing, both in actions and in keeping balance. 
Mike Lukovich / Atlanta Journal Constitution

Tweet storm:  #NoSessions#SilenceRacismNotWarren

Contact your state representative and ask their position on exploratory drilling in the Porcupine Wilderness…and why. (That is all. This is practice for a habit of demanding accountability from our representatives.)

Stock up on postcards. More avalanches coming.


Lies and the lying liars who tell them.
*”Trump told the sheriffs, ‘the murder rate in our country is the highest it’s been in 47 years.’“ Actually, it is nearly at the lowest point it has been in 50 years.  (From the Washington Post)
*POTUS — as Donald J. Trump — tweets on 7Feb2017: “It is a disgrace that my full cabinet is still not in place, the longest such delay in the history of our country. Obstruction by Democrats!”
Actually, Obama’s cabinet holds that title.


McConnell silences Warren on the Senate floor last night, accuses her of conduct unbecoming a Senator.
But this guy (Jeff Merkley, D-OR) wasn’t stopped from reading it.
Text of Coretta Scott King’s letter read by Warren.  Letter plus full statement to the 1986 Senate Judiciary Committee here.
Heavens to Betsy! Penny payments to petition signers means “paid support” for DeVos.…

“The Russia Review Act would require the White House to submit a report detailing why it was seeking to lift sanctions, setting into motion a 120-day review period where Congress could vote to disapprove of easing the penalties on the country, according to a summary of the measure provided to CNN.”

DAPL expedited.…/army-to-allow-completion-of-dakota……/army-grant-easement-dakota-a…/story…

More from the data erasure/rush to save data front lines.…/gun-violence-researchers-race-prote…

People like us.…/guide-sprawling-new-anti-trump-res…/

Plenty of “how to best influence your legislator” checklists have been floating around, but here’s a fresh one from Barney Frank. His includes “make sure you are registered to vote.” Not just so you can vote, but because he says they check.…/barney-frank-heres-how-to-not-waste-your-…
Also mentioning this one from Medium, because it’s nice to get reinforcement that what we’ve been doing is spot on.

Fabulous tool from ProPublica that tracks each item of legislation with a summary, how representatives and senators voted, and any statements released by a given representative about that item. Tech savvy folks, note it includes an API.
ProPublica story explains the tool and its history.

Remember/meet: Patsy Mink, champion of Title IX and universal health care.

CARTOON: Mike Lukovich / Atlanta Journal Constitution…/0208-mike-luckovich-consti…/

Morning Cup: Doxxing, DeVos

It’s Tuesday, February 6th. Radar shows rain falling across the lower part of the mitten, snow across much of the U.P., and a big swatch of clear in between. Whatever the skies above you as you join in today, welcome and good morning. 
The Democrats have been holding the Senate floor since yesterday, delaying the vote on Betsy DeVos and giving the public 24 more hours to contact Republican senators with their objections and concerns — because it is only Republican senators who have said they will vote in favor of DeVos.
POTUS45 spoke at MacDill AFB yesterday and accused the press of underreporting terrorist attacks. 
Here inside FAM, folks got rightfully upset at a Republican Party operative in Marquette who suggested a Kent State style bullet would tamp down protestors. 
Let’s take a moment to talk about the way we’re approaching the Dan Adamini situation, as it will apply to ANY official FAM response. 
It’s pretty simple: We don’t do cyber vigilante justice, period.
We *do* ask fellow members to call out reprehensible behavior. We do demand perpetrators be held accountable by the proper authorities. We do not share personal information and encourage harassment. That is called “doxxing.” Whether or not someone’s personal work phone number, home address, names of aunts and uncles, whatever, can be found with a simple online search or not is immaterial. The act of sharing the information with malicious intent is indeed doxxing, and it will not be tolerated here. 
(More information on doxxing, including information on how to protect yourself from cyber harassment, in the Reading & Resources section.)
By all means, in the case of Dan Adamani, contact the Republican party and let them know what you think of their county secretary’s inciting violence. Contact your own representatives and let them know you expect them to say in no uncertain terms that this behavior is unacceptable, and that you will understand a lack of consequences to mean the Republican party sanctions violence.
But do not encourage each other to directly take on the actor.
Alrighty. Mugs ready. Deep breaths and or firing up, as needed. Let’s do what we can on DeVos, continue to hold POTUS45’s feet to the fire on accountability, and get informed on the impact of drilling.
Lisle, IL Police Department
We are Michigan. We know how Betsy DeVos has used her money to buy influence, how her charter schools have failed students and drained local schools, and how her limited knowledge and interest in education will sacrifice students with special needs, students in areas with little resources, student achievement, etc., in the interest of “alternative schools.” Keep calling. Senators. Friends in other states. The likelihood is that the vote count remains 50-50, and it goes to the Vice President to break the tie…but this groundswell is not going unnoticed. We keep trying, because already we’ve moved the needle, and one more vote will tick the balance to “NO.”

If you have not registered your concern about Dan Adamini’s social media communications, contact the Republican party. If you are local, contact Marquette. Anywhere else, contact your local representatives, as well as state and national organizations. Ask if they support members inciting the public to violence, and if their policy in response to peaceful protest is one bullet.

After Betsy DeVos, the next vote will be on Jeff Sessions. Another round of calls to your senators and your representative is in order.

Note that the very last Reading/Resource link is a piece with strategies on how to stay engaged for the long haul. Remember, always, pace yourself.


Doxxing explained by How Stuff Works

podcast from tech/media site The Verge; addresses the question “can you find me without me telling you?” (HINT: The answer is yes, but what you do with that knowledge is key — about 2/3 of the way in they point out that while yes, information could be available, but sharing it with the intent to harass is doxxing.)

This article from The Daily Beast includes practical discussion of how to protect yourself from doxxing (HINT: you need to clean up regularly — “like dental hygiene”)

“These kinds of acts essentially put the individual involved and their family at immediate risk.”
The DNR has issued a permit to Highland Copper for exploratory drilling in the Porcupine Wilderness State Park.

We discussed proposed Michigan FOIA legislation yesterday.  Here, Michigan Radio’s Jack Lessenberry weighs in on the Michigan FOIA legislation: “Nearly every other state subjects their governor to FOIA, and most of them also apply FOIA to their legislatures. But not our embarrassingly unethical Michigan, which has been judged worst in the nation for transparency and accountability.”

The report from the Center for Public Integrity

The Washington Post says our President is becoming the Divider in Chief.
While a Time magazine columnist calls for impeachment.

In his speech to military personnel at MacDill AFB on Monday, POTUS45 referred to “underreported” ISIS attacks on American soil and in Europe.

The AP is unable to verify that all of the attacks in the subsequently released list of 78 attacks were conducted by the Islamic State.
An editorial in Der Spiegel calls for Europe to stand up for “democracy, freedom, the West and its alliances” — and “start planning its political and economic defenses” against “America’s dangerous president.”

AWWP holding a candlelight vigil for freedom of expression this Saturday during it’s annual conference in D.C.
Speaking of writers, Writers Resist (who we have pointed to previously) is becoming Write Our Democracy, and are starting a “Words Have No Borders” campaign.

That fireball that landed in Lake Michigan Sunday night is not alone.

In it for the long haul; seven tactics for making it through difficult times when you are committed to engaging.

Morning Cup: Whoa!

Monday 6 February

It’s Monday, February 6. The Patriots and the Falcons faced off last night in what ended up being a historic Superbowl game — so many Lady Gaga tweets and posts! Oh, and a historic come from behind in the fourth and overtime win.
Depending on where you read, the halftime performance was apolitical, uniting, or highly political. Another reminder to keep your media awareness with you at all times.  (And keep on practicing your own critical thinking.)
We were glad to see members sharing ways that they recharge this weekend.
Also fun are little exchanges seen between obvious and subversive allies. The ACLU asked Merriam-Webster a very important question, and they shared a little love in their exchange.
Sportsball…diversions and recharging…filling our mugs…
…and into the week. Here we go.


It’s Betsy DeVos Day. The Senate convenes at noon, and will proceed into executive session to vote on the nomination of Betsy DeVos for Secretary of Education. We have this morning to continue another historic statistic — the Capitol switchboard logged record traffic last week. Let’s see what we can do with overtime.

Reach out to anyone you know in NC, CO, AZ — encourage them to contact their senators. McCain is welcoming calls from anywhere — call his office yourself.

Contact your senators and representative in support of Senator Warren’s legislation requiring the President and Vice President to fully divest themselves of conflicts of interest and further call to follow the emoluments clause.

Make sure that you’ve entered your state and local representatives into your contact information in preparation for further actions.


Detroit Free Press columnist lets us know that Senate Majority Leader Arlan Meekhof thinks we are not interested in that FOIA legislation pending — the bills that would make Michigan’s legislature and governor subject to FOIA disclosure rules. You know, the very legislation we started calling in support of last week.

This week’s Michigan slate of bills — we’ll dig deeper tomorrow.

NPR has a round up of the past two weeks of the Trump presidency. Which of course are the first two weeks.

The NYT yesterday published this story — note how one of the things mentioned is how President Trump is madder at Bannon for adding himself to the NSC than the immigration ban fallout. Yes, that’s right: The President did not read the entire executive order before signing.  Donald J. Trump is not pleased with this article.  The President has retweeted Donald J. Trump’s thoughts.
Trump and Russia
Our President equated the United States with Russia this weekend, and there is blowback.…/u-s-suggests-path-to-end-russian-sanc……/republican-lawmakers-break-from-tr……/mcconnell-breaks-trump-…/97519470/…/trump-s-russia-u-s-comparison-reje…

The drumbeat for investigating Trump’s ties to Russia is louder again…/2017/02/pelosi-trump-russia-234664
because people haven’t forgotten
or this request
or how the Senate dropped the hot potato…/senate-trump-russia-investigation…
This guy is one of the reporters following the rubles.

Closer look: Sanctuary cities
President Trump has called for publication of a weekly list of crimes committed by illegal immigrants in sanctuary cities. (He has not ordered that the same data for naturalized citizens and legal immigrants be published.)
“…immigrants of all kinds are actually less likely to commit crimes than those born inside the United States”…/4-big-things-to-know-abo…/…
“Specifically addressing President Trump’s contentions that sanctuary cities are magnets for homicide, Wong found that the typical sanctuary area saw 1 fewer homicide per 100,000 people in 2015 than the typical non-sanctuary area. While the difference is small, Wong’s statistical tests indicate it is highly significant.”…/ct-trump-sanctuary-city-cri…

Data erasing/changing, climate edition.


Has anybody here ever played crokinole?

workers in the weave — Russian textile work ca. 1920-30, courtesy iO9