The they fear him like their deity


I saw the following today and I thought it deserved an echo:

Trump is white = the GOP and his supporters LOVE him

Trump is a bully = the GOP and his supporters LOVE him

Trump is a cheat = the GOP and his supporters LOVE him

Trump is a liar = the GOP and his supporters LOVE him

Trump is a womanizer = the GOP and his supporters LOVE him

As long as Trump is not black or a woman or a white man spouting “liberal ideas” they have their Messiah…their bar is SO low Death Valley is a mountain top

I read the above response in a discussion thread about Michael Cohen secretly taping Trump discussing payment to a playboy model.

My knee-jerk was, yeah, that’s pretty accurate. Especially the low-bar.

But then I thought, it’s not LOVE for Trump, it’s fear. They fear his wrath. They fear his crazy tweets. They fear what he’s going to do next. No one knows what he’s going to do. Just like another guy we all have heard of …  Continue reading

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Ammonia—a renewable fuel made from sun, air, and water—could power the globe without carbon


From Science Magazine:

All told, Australia boasts a renewable energy potential of 25,000 gigawatts, one of the highest in the world and about four times the planet’s installed electricity production capacity. Yet with a small population and few ways to store or export the energy, its renewable bounty is largely untapped.

That’s where MacFarlane comes in. For the past 4 years, he has been working on a fuel cell that can convert renewable electricity into a carbon-free fuel: ammonia.

 

Inspiration: a really cool interview with photographer Noah Kalina


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Photo by Ryan Essmaker

I’ve seen Noah Kalina’s photographer published throughout the internets from time to time, but I didn’t know anything about him. His rich history of always pursuing photography, never doing anything other than photography, and finding a way to make a career out of it.

Go check out this interview with him here. It’s so good. And, seriously, an inspiration I needed right now.

A snip:

For more than fifteen years, Noah Kalina has carved out a freelance career that manages to strike a balance between fine art and commercial photography. Here, the Barryville, NY-based photographer talks to us about the path he took to get there—the high school awards that gave him the confidence to keep taking pictures; attending art school, and jump starting an independent career by taking $20 head shots out of a small Manhattan apartment; and why he chose to move his life and studio to rural Upstate NY. Despite the ups and downs that working solo can often present, Noah still says he wouldn’t have it any other way.

This photo stood out to me (below), but the Cabin Porn is stuff I’ve seen and is truly a sight. Go take a look. I don’t want to spoil everything and I certainly don’t want to be accused of copyright infringement. I’m hoping to send people to read the article.

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Photo by Noah Kalina

On my to-do list: re-listen to Terry Gross’ interview with Paul Schrader and Ethan Hawke about “First Reformed”


Probably a month ago, I heard bits and pieces of the NPR show Fresh Air. It was an interview with Filmmaker Paul Schrader and actor Ethan Hawke about a movie Schrader wrote and directed called “First Reformed.” You can listen to it here.

You’d know Schrader from the movies he wrote: “Taxi Driver” and “Raging Bull.” He also wrote the script for “The Last Temptation of Christ,” one of my favorite books and movies.

Schrader has reached 70 years and decided that after a long career of purposefully staying away from the topic of religion, it was time to maybe pursue it.

Apparently Schrader and I share some similarities. He grew up in Grand Rapids, Michigan, deep in the heart of the Dutch Reformed Church. My dad is a Dutchman, immigrated to Grand Rapids as a teen and comes from the reformed tradition. My mom grew up in Grand Rapids as well.

We all had very religious upbringings.  Continue reading

Fostering a culture of Carrorism and doing conscious acts of kindness


About a year ago, I was moved by the social media updates of a model friend of mine named Nasreen Ameri. Her posts were usually about new work or travel associated with her amazing career. She traveled back and forth to New York City. She worked all over, seemingly all the time.

In what appeared to be an abrupt move, she left her successful modeling career to lead a movement of a philosophy she created. Then her posts were photos of heart shapes she found everywhere: in the concrete, in fruit, leaves, laundry, strings, etc.

She shared the images and coupled them with words of encouragement and kindness.

In a landscape infiltrated by acts of terrorism, Nasreen decided the world needed a new look on the old concept of do-gooderism.

She discovered that there was no word in the English dictionary for the opposite of terrorism. So she called her movement “Carrorism” and set her sights on doing conscious acts of kindness and encouraging those behaviors in others.

This struck me. I needed this movement. I loved it. It was so positive. It was a breath of fresh air.

Like most people last year and this one, my energy was sucked dry by the constant barrage of negative news, the endless Trumpian tweets, the incessant news coverage a country so divided by politics and humanity that it became almost impossible to keep a level head about life.

In person, most of us treat everyone else with compassion and empathy. But online, there seems to be a constant battle of who can post the stupidest meme calling “the other side” the dumbest possible person in existence.

I grew up in an evangelical Christian area of the southeast, and I was in love with Christianity as a young person through my early 20s. Nasreen’s philosophy, despite how great it is, would have been demonized by the leaders of my youth. There’s only one way to live, and that’s as a Christian. Nasreen’s philosophy doesn’t include any of that. Not necessarily.

I’ve since left the faith of my youth, but I’ve maintained a lot of disciplines and do-gooderisms of that upbringing. Sometimes I think of myself as a better Christian than most Christians. I know, I’m pompous. The only difference is I don’t believe in the divinity of Christ, just the actions of doing right, at a near extreme cost.

Nasreen’s call for monetary support

In one post, I was struck by Nasreen’s call to help her with a monetary contribution or subscription to help her on a monthly basis. I sat slumped in my chair, because that kind of donation wasn’t in the cards. But I wanted to help.

I slept on it, and I woke up thinking: I will do a documentary on her, for her, about her.

The idea was simple at first, but once production started, it became a bigger project. It was also a very expensive project. I ended up damaging a vintage car during one day of shooting, that threw off my game and I screwed up the settings on my A camera as a result of being completely flustered.

But the production continued. It was difficult not to have a positive attitude when around Nasreen. She constantly finds the positive in all situations. We need

I could honestly do full-length documentary about her.

In free time, I produced this video. I hope you take a look and I hope you enjoy it.

 

Why won’t you tolerate my intolerance?


Intolerance is all the rage!

It turns out that when you come to a multicultural cosmopolitan city with an open agenda of white supremacy, patriarchy and anti-urbanism, the native population tends not to like you. When you compound bigoted viewpoints with cruel and inhumane policies like family separation as a deterrent to reduce the percentage of American Hispanic population, you may find yourself unwelcome at Mexican restaurants. It turns out that when your sexual politics are built around retrograde beliefs in male dominance and superiority, empowered women (and decent men) don’t want to have sex with you.

The irony for conservatives here is that this is freedom of association. Conservatives have long argued for shibboleths like “states’ rights” and “religious freedom” as a code for giving bigots the power to refuse to serve and share space with racial and religious minorities, to refuse to bake cakes for gay weddings and make plates for black diners. Largely through the courts, America has rejected these arguments because minorities are protected classes who deserve freedom from discrimination–and conservatives have whined about these restrictions on their “freedom” of association in this respect for decades.

Read the rest of this editorial here.

Trumpists Are Suffering the Free Market Consequences Of Being Deplorable
by David Atkins