Personal news

My wife gave birth to our son Benjamin on December 24. That probably means I’ll be cutting back on posting in the coming year. I do want to do a couple things, though: namely raise a lot of money and keep reminding everyone what a disaster the Republican tax scam bill is. The single most important thing any of us can do for our children, beyond being good parents, is to put the country in the hands of the Democratic party. Here’s a one minute summary of Republicans’ plans for the country.

I haven’t been paying much attention to politics the last week or so, obviously. But when I was driving home from the doctor’s the other day, just listening to my usual jazz station, the three-minute news update came on and the whole damn thing was about people in the area lining up outside town clerks’ offices to try to prepay their local taxes before the Republican tax scam kicks in and takes away the local tax deduction. So, yeah, I think people in New York State (and probably in high-end suburbs everywhere in the country) are pretty fucking pissed.

Anywho, people sometimes wonder, is giving money to candidates and political parties a good way to spend their dollars? Well, I’ll tell you, our Galtian overlords spent maybe billion-and-a-half on the last election, and they got a trillion-and-a-half back. That’s a thousand-fold return. I can’t speak for everywhere but in my area people like me are probably getting about a 3K a year tax hike from this piece of shit. We can keep paying that vig forever or we can fork over the money it takes to get Democrats in to repeal this thing, and also too save the fucking country from ruin.

I’d say give til it hurts, but, honestly, give til it helps. Do it for Benjamin.

Here’s the Balloon Juice House fund (cut equally between Democratic nominees in every district currently held by Republicans). I just upped the goal on this sucker to 25K. Let’s try to hit 20K by the New Year.

Goal Thermometer

And here’s the fund for Conor Lamb, a great Democratic candidate who’s running in the House special in March (for a pretty red district in PA).

Goal Thermometer

127 replies
  1. 1

    Congratulations. There’s not much that’s more astounding than the arrival of a whole new person.

  2. 2
    MazeDancer says:

    Congratulations on the new baby, Doug!

    And if you manage to keep posting the Act Blue thermometers throughout the year, it definitely helps.

  3. 3
    Mary G says:

    My birthday! Congratulations on winning the parent lottery, Benjamin. And Doug and spouse, go you.

  4. 4
    sharl says:

    Congratulations you and your family, Doug, and welcome to Benjamin! It seems rare these days to be greeted by good news upon opening the laptop, so YAY for this. And cosign with the rest of your message as well.

  5. 5
    ET says:

    Congratulations on the new baby! A truly joyous event for the season!

  6. 6
    mb says:

    pix or it didn’t happen. Tiny baby pix ASAP.

  7. 7
    JPL says:

    Congrats Doug! My seventy-one year old neighbor is still upset because he felt that x-mas eve took away from his special celebration.

  8. 8
    tobie says:

    Congratulations, Doug! May Benjamin grow up to be a proud liberal, fierce fighter for democracy, a jackal if this blog is still around, and all other good things.

  9. 9
    donnah says:

    Congrats and best wishes for a new baby in a New Year!

  10. 10
    Betty Cracker says:

    Wonderful news, Doug! Welcome to the world, Benjamin!

  11. 11
    chopper says:

    congrats Doug.

  12. 12
    Spanky says:

    So this post really is about all the Benjamins. Congrats!

  13. 13
    mvr says:

    Congratulations on the new family member. I always enjoy your posts, so I’ll miss them when you slow down to focus on other things. But best wishes to all of you in the new year!

  14. 14
    R-Jud says:

    Two of my favourite humans were Christmas Eve babies. Good timing, Benjamin. Congratulations, Doug and Lady Doug.

  15. 15
    Mike J says:

    December boys got it bad.

  16. 16
    bmoak says:

    Congrats! But you can hold and burp your baby boy with one hand and text posts here with the other, y’know.

  17. 17
    Sab says:

    Good for little Benjamin. Just barely made it for that last dependent exemption on your tax return. Well done!

  18. 18
    frosty says:

    @JPL: I have a cousin born on 12/24. The family celebrated her birthday on 6/24.

    PS Congratulations DougJ!

  19. 19
    Snarkworth, short-fingered Bulgarian says:

    Wonderful news! Did Benjamin! arrive with his own exclamation mark?

  20. 20
    Emma says:

    Congratulations! Maybe we should consider a Benjamin Fund, to support candidates that are specially strong on family issues.

  21. 21
    eemom says:

    How wonderful!! Congrats to you and the Mrs!!!

    Babies are the BEST.

    And Benjamin is a great name….excellent choice!

    Pix plz…..

  22. 22
    germy says:

    Congratulations to Doug! A future front-pager is born.

    But you said ” I can’t speak for everywhere but in my area people like me are probably getting about a 3K a year tax hike from this piece of shit.”

    The New York Times sees it differently:

    If you are among the majority of Americans whose tax bill will decrease next year, there are some obvious ways to put the money to work.

    People who are sick, indebted, or in an unstable job or relationship will need to pay the bills or save for imminent hardship. Others who are more stable but not saving enough to meet even modest retirement or college savings goals should probably increase account contributions by the amount they’re getting from the tax bill.

  23. 23
  24. 24
    Felanius Kootea says:

    Congratulations Doug!

  25. 25
    Sab says:

    @germy: The NYT is buying this everyone gets a tax cut hook line and sinker, aren’t they?

  26. 26

    Congrats on the new member of the family.

  27. 27
    Steeplejack says:

    Congratulations, DougJ!

    What’s the over-under on Benjamin’s age when he first successfully trolls the old man?

  28. 28
    satby says:

    Congratulations and welcome to the world Benjamin!

    @germy: the NYT is garbage.

  29. 29
    germy says:


    The NYT is buying this everyone gets a tax cut hook line and sinker, aren’t they?

    Yes, that’s the line they’ve been pushing. And my local TV station reprinted it on their website and are reporting it on the air. Right after their story about local residents lining up to prepay their property taxes…

  30. 30
    Mike J says:

    @DougJ: And congrats, too.

    If you have another you’ll have to try timing it for September and hope for a gurl.

  31. 31
    Mary G says:

    @Steeplejack: Considering his genes, he may have done it already.

  32. 32
    geg6 says:

    Congratulations to you and Mrs. Doug! What a lovely Christmas present!

    And yes, Conor Lamb is a great candidate. If any Dem can win that district, it would be him. He’ll have an uphill battle and can use all help he can get. But he has a good chance.

  33. 33
    MomSense says:


  34. 34
    eclare says:


  35. 35
    Baud says:

    Hazzah! I am going to Applebee’s salad bar tonight to celebrate!


  36. 36
    SgrAstar says:

    Yay Doug!, Mrs Doug!, and Benjamin! Welcome aboard, Benjamin.

  37. 37
    germy says:

    “OK, Mr. Moskowitz!”

  38. 38
    Manyakitty says:

    Mazel tov! Welcome to the world, Benjamin!

  39. 39
    Yarrow says:

    Congratulations! What great news! Welcome baby Benjamin. You’ve already started his music education, right?

    people in the area lining up outside town clerks’ offices to try to prepay their local taxes before the Republican tax scam kicks in and takes away the local tax deduction. So, yeah, I think people in New York State (and probably in high-end suburbs everywhere in the country) are pretty fucking pissed.

    This made national news. Saw video of the lines out the door at tax offices or courthouses or whatever they were in various places around the country. People are paying attention that Republicans took away their tax deductions.

  40. 40
    Jamey says:

    @Steeplejack: I’d guess pretty quickly. I think waiting for the diaper to be lowered before starting to pee is a pretty good troll.

  41. 41
    RandomMonster says:

    Mazel tov!

  42. 42
    Yarrow says:


    The NYT is buying this everyone gets a tax cut hook line and sinker, aren’t they?

    No. The NYT is trying to sell the idea that everyone gets a tax cut. They know it’s a lie. They want you to believe it.

  43. 43
    germy says:

    Never change diapers in midstream.

  44. 44
    SiubhanDuinne says:

    So happy for you and your wife! Big congratulations to you both, and a huge warm “welcome to the world” to young Benjamin.

  45. 45
    rikyrah says:


  46. 46

    Congratulations Doug. And nice name.

  47. 47
    WaterGirl says:

    Congratulations on your your new baby. I can’t believe you didn’t title this post Benjamins for Benjamin!

  48. 48
    Ohio Mom says:

    And take an extra deep breath of Benjamin’s new baby scent for me. There is nothing so sweet as the smell of a baby…

  49. 49
    Steeplejack says:


    The geyser! A classic.

  50. 50
    Sourmash says:

    Congratulations! And damn right. We can pay that vig forever or take care of this. Thanks for the reminder!

  51. 51
    kbuttle says:

    May he have
    the intelligence of a Brooks,
    the fairness of a Broder,
    the charisma of a Rubio,
    and the purity of a Paul,
    as imagined by our betters.

  52. 52
    p.a. says:

    Congrats! Economical: you’ll be present shopping anyway, so birthday & xmas/hanukkah/solstice all in one shot.

  53. 53
    Schlemazel says:

    Congrats, doug!, you will experience the most painful joy and the most joyful pain you can imagine. Don’t know how it is around your house but if it was like mine growing up you might consider celebrating Benjamin! half-birthday so his special day is not lost in the shuffle of the holidays.

  54. 54
    Debbie(aussie) says:

    Welcome to the world Benjamin! Congrats Doug and the lucky but probably already sleep deprived Mum. May his life be a good one, filled with love an joy!

  55. 55
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Congratulations, Doug and spouse! Welcome Benjamin! Let’s hope you don’t go all Kylo Ren on us!

  56. 56
    Svensker says:

    Congrats, DougJ & spouse! Hope you’re getting some sleep. I know you’ll introduce little Ben to all the good music, so there’s one worry for the future gone. Happy New Year!

  57. 57
    spudgun says:

    Doug!, coming out of lurkdom to say congratulations!! So happy for you and your family!

  58. 58
    Jamey says:

    @Steeplejack: The joy of baby boys

  59. 59
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    Congrats on the new arrival. Here’s wishing you and the kid and his mother good health and lots of sleep in the new year.

    Meanwhile, is grifting genetic?

    @ kylegriffin1
    In June, the Commercial Bank of Dubai sought and received permission to subpoena Ivanka’s now-defunct jewelry line, claiming its diamonds were used in a massive scheme to hide roughly $100 million that was owed to the bank, according to court filings.

  60. 60
    patrick II says:

    Congratulations! I remember the joy at the births of our children and it is a once in a lifetime thing, savor it. Also good news for me, an insomniac, DougJ will be up at 3 in the morning and maybe fit in a little time for a post for us to read. Wonderful news!

  61. 61
    mattH says:

    @Mary G:

    Congratulations on winning the parent lottery, Benjamin. And Doug and spouse, go you.

    Exactly! And congratulations Doug!

  62. 62

    Welcome Benjamin!! Sorry about the mess, we’ll do our best to clean it up.

  63. 63
    Another Scott says:

    @frosty: Clever!

    Welcome Benjamin! I’m sure he’ll have the usual resentments about the particular date. I’m an early December kid, so I had some of those resentments as a kid, but nothing like those born on that particular date!



  64. 64
    DougJ says:

    Thanks everyone!

  65. 65
    Marcopolo says:

    Let me add to the congrats. Also thanks for the fundraising threads and to all the BJers out their who are kicking in. Finally, and I don’t know how much interest there’d be, but how about a designated weekly thread (same day/same time) where folks can say what they are doing to help elect better lawmakers and otherwise talk about tangible activities (aside from giving cash) that we can do where we live.

  66. 66
    Tazj says:

    Congratulations! What wonderful news! I enjoy reading your posts even though most of them make my head spin.

  67. 67
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Well, well, well. Little miss female empowerment seems to actually be a Mafia princess.

  68. 68
    zhena gogolia says:


    Congratulations, great news.

  69. 69
    JamesKPolkEsq says:

    Congratulations! Baby Casey was due on Christmas day last year – because we are awesome planners – and it’s been great.

    You are in for an incredible ride. Try to savior the sweetness of the journey.

    Pic please!

  70. 70
    JMG says:

    Congratulations, Doug!

  71. 71

    Congratulations to DougJ and Lady DougJ. Also, many thanks for the fundraising posts.

  72. 72
    Bonnie says:

    Congratulations! Benjamin is a great name.

  73. 73
    Patricia Kayden says:

    Congrats on your Christmas Baby, Doug!!

  74. 74
    Chat Noir says:

    Congratulations! I think Benjamin is an excellent name and I wish you and your family all the best.

  75. 75
    KS in MA says:

    Congratulations, Doug!

  76. 76
    Yutsano says:

    MAZEL TOV!!!

    And don’t worry too much about us jackals.

  77. 77
    Nicole says:

    Hooray! What wonderful news! Congratulations! Oh, the first year goes so by so fast. I think that’s why parents take so many pictures the first year- you’d never remember it otherwise. Probably due to the limited sleep, but that time, too, goes by quickly.

  78. 78
    Mike in DC says:

    Congrats, Doug. Don’t forget to introduce him as “my only begotten son, in whom I am well pleased.”

  79. 79
    David Hunt says:

    Congrats to the whole family. Benjamin shares a birthday with my Aunt Merry. And yes, that is the spelling that my grandmother gave to her.

  80. 80
    Barry says:

    Congratulations! I guess that 2017 did bring something worthwhile into the world :)

  81. 81
    mg_65 says:

    Delurking to say congratulations, Doug, Mrs. Doug, and wee Benjamin!

  82. 82
    SuzieC says:


  83. 83
    Mr Stagger Lee says:

    Congratulations!!! Many Blessings to you and yours

  84. 84
    Leto says:

    Congratulations Doug, and welcome Ben! Wishing the best for you and the family :)

  85. 85
    CaseyL says:

    Congratulations! We look forward to many posted photos of the new guy!

  86. 86

    Awesome news. Congrats, Doug

  87. 87
    artem1s says:

    I’ve been giving to various campaigns since W stole the election in 2000. It’s important but I found a way to get involved in voter turnout.

    Seems they were very active in AL for Doug Jones campaign. they pick a race and put together a postcard writing campaign. I’m looking forward to helping with turnout as well as funding campaigns. Makes me feel a little more connected.

  88. 88
    Adrift says:

    Mazel Tov!

  89. 89
    Central Planning says:

    Congrats DougJ. Benjamin is an excellent name – the name of my first-born.

    And congrats on a 2017 deduction!

  90. 90
    Big Picture Pathologist says:

    Congrats to you and mom, and welcome to earth Benjamin!

  91. 91
    The Moar You Know says:

    The New York Times sees it differently

    @germy: That’s some goddamn industrial strength shit they’re smoking, there. Like road tar or battery acid or spray paint. Just got back from lunch with my FIL, who quite frankly is a fucking Nazi, and he is getting absolutely fucked by the new tax bill and knows it, is not keeping quiet about it and is fucking pissed. The NYT normalizes this at their peril. EVERYONE knows this is a fucking tax increase and a rip-off.

  92. 92
    justawriter says:

    You know, a Democratic Congress would be the perfect first birthday gift for young Benjamin.

  93. 93

    Congratulations, Doug and family!

  94. 94
    debbie says:

    Congratulations! If it’s your first, double congratulations!

  95. 95
    sheila in nc says:

    Congratulations, Doug! and Mrs Doug!, and welcome to parenthood! All the best for you and your new family.

  96. 96
    Cacti says:

    Welcome to fatherhood.

    Nothing quite like it. ;-)

  97. 97
    OzarkHillbilly says:

    Congrats Doug. My sons are the best thing I ever did. ( so long as I didn’t screw them up too much)

  98. 98
    Lizzy L says:

    Congratulations! Wonderful news!

  99. 99
    Mnemosyne says:

    Late to the party, but sincerest congratulations! The sleep deprivation will be worth the rest of it.

    And if all you can manage for 2018 is keeping the ActBlue thermometers updated, that in itself will be a great help. Now go nap while you can!

  100. 100
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    Congratulations! Don’t worry, you’re young and don’t really need all of that sleep for the next few months. ;)

    One good thing is that no matter how poor you get, you’ll always have one Benjamin that you can’t spend. :)

  101. 101
    RobertDSC-Mac Mini says:

    Congrats to your new addition!

  102. 102
    Elizabelle says:

    Welcome to Benjamin. Congratulations, Doug. Wonderful news. My best to you and your wife.

  103. 103
    Waratah says:

    Congratulations To you and your wife. You will love your December baby they are special.

  104. 104
    Amir Khalid says:

    Adding my congratulations to the pile. Welcome to Earth, Benjamin.

  105. 105
    Miss Bianca says:


  106. 106
    Kay says:

    What good news! Hi baby Benjamin! We’re glad you’re here.

    I’m only working on/following state races. The national scene disgusts me. I know that sounds snobby but it’s true. These people are just too appalling for me to deal with at this juncture. The state Republicans are just…smaller. You can get your arms around the awful. Manageable.

  107. 107 says:

    Congrats Doug. That is awesome. I enjoy your posts and will miss you but i am sure you’ll pop in every so often. You better bring Benjamin up to be a true blue Democrat!

  108. 108
    Bill Arnold says:

    Headline for that article is Expecting a Tax Cut Next Year? Spend It on Others so it’s not targeted at the people who are looking at a tax increase.
    Doug has a good point at top. FWIW, because donations are effectively no longer deductible for me, a much larger percentage of mine will be for political activity (lobbying, political campaigns, etc). This will continue until the Democrats have sufficient numbers in power to undo the new Republican corporate tax giveaway, which is paid for (approximately) by debt (which children and grandchildren will inherit) and enscrewment of large segments of the not-1-percent, including the new Tax Tax (Blue State Tax on SALT), which is increasing my Federal income taxes by roughly 16 percent (have run the numbers). It will be interesting to observe the effects on donations; perhaps they will not be what the Republicans expected. :-)

    Also, there needs to be unrelenting messaging about this, else large numbers of the middle class will go into voting booths in November 2018 not realizing that their tax refunds in 2019 with have shrunk a lot.

  109. 109
    JGabriel says:

    DougJ @ Top:

    My wife gave birth to our son Benjamin on December 24.

    Belated Congratulations, Doug! Best wishes for Benjamin and the DougJ family!

  110. 110
    mainmata says:

    Heartfelt congratulations for your son’s birth. Our son was also born close to Christmas (less than 2 weeks before) and this can be awkward in terms of celebration and presents given the proximity to Christmas. When they’re real little, they can feel a little slighted. In your son’s case, it basically becomes an identity. Don’t know if your family even celebrates Christmas so it may/may not matter.

  111. 111
    Aleta says:

    + Thanks for giving so much time and good writing to us readers this year.
    Will miss you, but all joy to the wondrous Benjamin and your family.

  112. 112
    Alternative Fax, a hip hop artist from Idaho says:

    Welcome Benjamin!, we will delight to hear of your milestones when Doug!Dad! has time to keep us updated.

  113. 113
    TomatoQueen says:

    Welcome in, baby Benjamin, and best wishes to you for a long and fulfilling life, filled with love and happiness. Congratulations to your parents, Doug! and Mrs Doug!, who will do their best for you, and look upon you with delight and devotion all your days.

  114. 114
    Johannes says:

    Many, many congratulations, and welcome to the world, Benjamin! (And, sorry, we are trying to fix it. Promise.)

  115. 115
    Brachiator says:

    Coming late to the thread. Been away from the Inter Webs.

    Doug!, this is wonderful news. Just wonderful.

    My deepest warmest wishes to you and your family.

    Great way to close out the year.

  116. 116
    Mandarama says:

    This is wonderful news. Congratulations to your family! Welcome, baby Benjamin.

  117. 117
    David 🎅🎄Merry Christmas🎄🎅 Koch says:

    ¡Merry Christmas Baby!

  118. 118
    cbear says:

    Congratulations, Doug!!

  119. 119
    SFBayAreaGal says:

    Congratulations to you Doug, your wife and family.

  120. 120
    Original Lee says:

    Congratulations on the new addition to the family, Doug!

    ETA: And it probably feels as if you’ve built a whole new piece of house onto your existing dwelling at this point, too.

  121. 121

    Congratulations to you, your wife and your family! And pics or it didn’t happen.

  122. 122
    J R in WV says:

    Congratulations. I was born on Dec 27. They always made it a point to have a special dessert and some presents to unwrap on my birthday. Even gathered uncles and such into the plot.

    Now we don’t celebrate xmas much, small gifts to friends, like copies of old photos of long gone friends working their crop this year. And when you’re old as I am, birthdays are milestone more than parties. Glad to make another one, hope I keep it up.

    Again, congrats, and I contributed, again. Still on a monthly, too!!

  123. 123
    Lurking Canadian says:

    Congratulations to Doug and welcome to Benjamin. Our side needs all the good people we can get

  124. 124
    msdc says:

    Congratulations, Doug!

  125. 125
    O. Felix Culpa says:

    Adding my congrats to the chorus! Happy birthday to Benjamin and happy blue wave new year to us all!

  126. 126
    DougJ says:

    Thanks everyone

  127. 127
    SFAW says:

    Doug –
    Congratulations to you and your wife!

    And a big welcome to Benjamin! Let’s hope that, by the time you’re old enough to understand politics, all vestiges of the Shitgibbon Maladministration (and its attempted destruction of America) will have been wiped from the country.

    Failing that: Chinese is a good choice of languages to learn.

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