Tag Archives: The Washington Post

We finally found election fraud [The Washington Post]

We finally found election fraud and Republicans are the ones doing it, running an operation in North Carolina to illegally pick up absentee ballots from African-American voters and keep them from being turned in. Disgraceful and criminal.

The Republicans have a record of making accusations against Democrats — usually, though not always, baseless — and then it turns out that the Republicans themselves are doing that thing. This dates back to Monicagate, when it turned out Clinton’s loudest Republican accusers were also having sex with their subordinates.

As Trump decries Clinton’s “hate-filled campaign” at rally, his supporters and protesters scuffle

Trump condemned Clinton’s “basket of deplorables” remark. (Sean Sullivan, The Washington Post)

The headline on the original story says “violence flares up” at the rally, which is technically accurate but leaves the impression of bloodshed. The article makes it sound more like some shoving and punching.

Baby boomers are taking on ageism — and losing

Lydia DePillis, The Washington Post:

In a weak economy, companies are sometimes all too happy to dump veteran employees, with their higher health-care costs and legacy pensions, for younger ones who expect neither.

Not a problem for me — yet. At 55, maybe I’m not old enough for ageism to be an issue. And I’m blessed with good genes.

Keeping physically fit helps limit age discrimination. You move like a younger person. But you can’t do anything about your genes.

Trump is right: He didn’t kick a baby out of a campaign rally

Glenn Kessler, The Washington Post, writes that the mother was already on the way out when Trump made the comment on kicking her out. The mother, Devan Ebert of Virginia, was and continues to be a staunch Trump supporter and has written in his defense. She later returned to the same seat at the rally, with her now-quiet baby.

The Toronto Star’s Daniel Dale says he was there, saw the whole thing, and corroborates the mother’s story.

Dale says he chooses not to get press credentials for rallies, preferring to sit with the people for what he might see and hear. Which is what journalists at political rallies should do routinely.



Robert Kosara, a research scientist at data visualization software company Tableau, has been solving puzzles using the US’s nearly 4,2000 ZIP codes for years, writes Christopher Ingraham at The Washington Post. Kosara had a question:

What would it look like if you drew a single line through all Zip codes in the lower 48 in numeric order? Kosara wrote some code and let it rip, and what he ended up with was a map that clearly delineated state boundaries and gave a reasonable approximation of population density to boot. Since it looked as though it were created by scribbling in arbitrary regions of a U.S. map, he dubbed it the ZIPScribble map.

Kosara ran some calculations and discovered that if you started at the lowest-numbered Zip code (00544, Holtsville, NY) and walk through every Zip code in the continental U.S. in numeric order all the way up to the highest-numbered Zip code (99403, Clarkston, WA), the path you’d need to take would be roughly 1,155,268 miles long. Which naturally brought up a second question: What would be the shortest route you could take through all 37,000 of those zip codes?

This type of problem actually has a storied history in computer science. It’s known as the Traveling Salesman Problem: Say a salesman has a bunch of cities in his route — what’s the shortest trip he can take through all of them? This type of computation is used as a benchmark in computer science because it has a lot of applications, from route-finding to the creation of circuit boards, and because it gets complicated really, really quickly. For instance, a network of only 20 points contains roughly 1.2 quintillion(1,200,000,000,000,000,000) possible solutions, only one of which can be the shortest. That’s on the order of magnitude of the number of grains of sand on earth.

What, then, of a traveling salesman problem with more than 37,000 points?

Kosara took a crack at it. He called it the Traveling Presidential Candidate Problem, after a hypothetical presidential candidate who wanted to visit all 37,000 contiguous Zip codes to clinch the nomination.


Greg Sargent at The Washington Post excerpts Trump’s statements:

We must restore law and order. We must restore the confidence of our people to be safe and secure in their homes and on the street.

The senseless, tragic deaths of two motorists in Louisiana and Minnesota reminds us how much more needs to be done….Our nation has become too divided. Too many Americans feel like they’ve lost hope. Crime is harming too many citizens. Racial tensions have gotten worse, not better. This isn’t the American Dream we all want for our children.

This is a time, perhaps more than ever, for strong leadership, love and compassion. We will pull through these tragedies.


Trump ban

Does it matter that Donald Trump has banned us? Not in the way you’d think. [Margaret Sullivan/The Washington Post]

Clinton isn’t much better than Trump on press accessibility. She might be worse.

It’s worth noting that Hillary Clinton — although she hasn’t revoked any credentials or made bombastic speeches about phony coverage — has been far less accessible than Trump, giving no press conferences and very few serious interviews. None of this bodes well for press access in 2017 and beyond. …

Bob Woodward recalled the early retaliation by the Nixon administration in 1972 to The Post’s Watergate reporting: A society reporter, Dorothy McCardle, was banned from White House dinners and parties. “It was absurd,” he said. But it became far less so when The Post’s broadcast licenses were challenged, which in turn caused the company’s stock price to plummet.

“They hit Katharine Graham where it could hurt,” Woodward told me. “And she didn’t flinch.”



A moving Mother’s Day memory from Mollie Kotzen, a third-year- medical student, who says, “My mom was addicted to painkillers, but she was still a great mom.” Kotzen’s mother died when Kotzen was 14. On The Washington Post:

She had many faults. Some of them, I’m certain, were associated with her addiction. She had a nasty side, especially during any interaction with my dad’s new girlfriends. She got arrested for doctor shopping in order to find one who would give her painkillers. She was, at times, tremendously lazy, letting me miss doctors’ appointments and stay home from school whenever I wanted. She spent way too much money on clothes and makeup and plastic surgery. She had far too many cats (four) that she didn’t take care of. She smoked cigarettes in the house. She had a real thing for young men in AA.

Still, my mother loved me intensely, and she showed it. There were endearing nicknames (Munchkie, Matzoh Ball, Mollsie); a million kisses and head rubs (“Let me pet your keppe”); birthday presents weeks in advance because she just couldn’t wait; her meal in a second if I liked it better than mine; bragging to all her friends when I did anything halfway noteworthy; hundreds of childhood photos put into dozens of photo albums; detailed and fantastically sweet and proud baby books (my “notable accomplishment” at one week old was “being the most beautiful little girl ever born”). If I hated a new boyfriend, he’d be gone in an instant.

I never doubted that my brothers and I were the most important beings in her life. Though she deployed Yiddish from time to time, my mom wasn’t religious. So during her “recovery” in AA, she called me her “higher power.” She was funny and dirty and loved sex and cursed a s—load. She was a gorgeous, loving, broken mess, and I’m lucky to have had her at all.


He served just one term, was elected with four major goals, completed all of them, and died a few months after leaving office.

In a feat basically never before or again accomplished in the White House, President James K. Polk managed to execute nearly every single goal he established for himself at the outset of his term in office. So why is he rarely considered among the great American presidents?

In the newest podcast episode of “Presidential,” we explore that question with historian Amy Greenberg, a professor at Penn State University. Greenberg explains Polk’s key traits—in particular, his intense work ethic and his willingness to lie—that made his one term, from 1845 to 1849, so effective. Yet she also reflects on why “effectiveness” may not be the right gauge for greatness.

Musician John Linnell, of the band They Might Be Giants, also makes a guest appearance to discuss the song he composed about James K. Polk and what inspired him to write it.

Among Polk’s goals were annexing California and Texas. But he had to launch an imperialist war based on lies to do it, which might account for his relative obscurity today. Even in 1846, many Americans considered that beyond the pale.

James K. Polk: Getting it done [Lillian Cunnigham – Presidential – The Washington Post]


Republicans are surrendering to Donald Trump

The Wall Street Journal, Karl Rove, and Marco Rubio denounced Trump, but they’re now extending olive branches, says Fareed Zakaria at The Washington Post.

The modern GOP espoused free markets, free trade, social conservatism, an expansionist foreign policy, and fiscal discipline, particularly on social spending Zakaria says. (What he doesn’t say is that the Republicans were always hypocrites on these issues, particularly spending.) Now, the Republican leadership are turning their backs on those beliefs to avoid being shut out of power.

[Republicans are surrendering to Donald Trump | Fareed Zakaria | The Washington Post]

Elsewhere, a friend suggests a nasty scenario: Trump and Cruz make a deal and unite. This seems likely.