We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal,

that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

40 replies
  1. 1
    columbusqueen says:

    Whatever the flaws & faults of the founders, this remains the most important statement in history to me. Thank you, Adam, for reminding me to keep the faith & to keep fighting.

  2. 2
    randal m sexton says:

    I like to reflect on the idea that the Declaration of Independence is not part of the constitution, it does not describe or form a part of the legal foundation or the political system we have. It is a fighting document. My favorite notion in it is ‘deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed’ . If any government does not have that consent, it is not just. The system the constitution attempted set up is to get that consent by voting. Now when some amount of the citizens are prevented from voting, or is so uninformed or lied to by their governing institutions, then that consent cannot be said to have been given. Voter suppression, Gerrymandering, Public officials constantly lying and perjuring contribute to this. At some point ‘the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it’ becomes our duty. Lets hope that we dont have to rise to this occasion, but that if we have to that we will have the courage to. I wish to leave this country in as good a shape to my children, and theoretic grandchildren as was left to me by my parents. Happy 4th everybody.

  3. 3
    Another Scott says:

    Kinda related… Long twitter thread:

    ✡️ Never Again Action ✡️ @NeverAgainActn

    LIVE: Hundreds out in Philly for the #NeverAgainIsNow action, right outside the DHS/ICE building. Now chanting “#NeverAgainMeans never again for anyone!” #NeverAgainParaNadie

    WATCH: https://www.facebook.com/NeverAgainAction/videos/343724039627449/

    7:27 AM – 4 Jul 2019

    They protested outside the ICE office, then blocked the July 4th parade.

    (via LOLGOP)


  4. 4
    Martin says:

    Whee. Nice big roller of a quake here in OC. No damage at the house.

  5. 5
    plato says:

    gopolitico warning.

    With the NRA, the Chamber of Commerce and Koch network withdrawing from their roles in electing conservatives, Republicans worry that three organizations that have long formed the core of their electoral infrastructure will be effectively on the sidelines. https://t.co/nh97pX1kz2— Kyle Griffin (@kylegriffin1) July 4, 2019

  6. 6
    Patricia Kayden says:

    @Another Scott: Good. We knew that Trump wasn’t going to be good for this country. We just didn’t know how far down he’d take us. Children in cages, detention camps, transgender military ban, bigotry, corruption, lawlessness, etc., etc. He can’t leave office fast enough.

  7. 7
    Brachiator says:

    Felt a long, slow roll in San Gabriel Valley area. Watched a floor lamp shake, wondered if this thing would build in intensity.

    What a way to start a lazy morning with an Independence Day earthquake!

  8. 8
  9. 9
    Martin says:

    6.6 up in Ridgecrest area, about 100 miles north of LA. Not many people live out there, but there will probably be serious damage closer to the quake. 6.6 is nothing to sneeze at.

    Happened during our neighborhood 4th of july parade. Bet that livened things up.

  10. 10
    Another Scott says:

    @Martin: The NGS earthquake page was working a couple of minutes ago, but only showed a M4 about 45 minutes ago in the southern central valley. Now it won’t load for me – I assume it’s being slashdotted. (Is that still a thing?)

    It’s back – https://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/map/


  11. 11
    Betty Cracker says:

    Just popped over to check on our Californians because of the quake reports on Twitter. Seemed like they were coming from cities that are fairly far apart.

  12. 12
    Brachiator says:


    Republicans worry that three organizations that have long formed the core of their electoral infrastructure will be effectively on the sidelines

    Republicans ain’t worried. The plutocrat gravy train is rolling along. From a recent CNN story.

    President Donald Trump’s campaign and the Republican National Committee raised a combined $105 million in the second quarter of 2019, the campaign announced Tuesday.

    The Trump campaign and his committees raised $54 million while the RNC raised $51 million, the campaign said in a news release

  13. 13
    raven says:

    @Betty Cracker: Did you get my email?

  14. 14
    🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷 says:

    Do these numbers actually matter all that much? Money can only do so much. I saw a story the other day that said that a model that predicted the 2018 Dem wave in the House also predicts Trump will lose in 2020. Still early days and don’t take anything for granted but these guys aren’t gods either.

  15. 15
    Brachiator says:

    Centered 11 miles from Ridgecrest. On a map this looks about midway between Bakersfield and Las Vegas.

    Not seeing anything about damage yet.

  16. 16
    Betty Cracker says:

    @raven: I just checked, and nothing’s there. Weird. Did you use the form or send it to bettycrackerfl — at sign — gmail.com?

  17. 17
    Another Scott says:

    @Martin: https://twitter.com/Popehat/status/1146839075996835842

    FreedomTanksHat @Popehat

    You get used to small quakes, but you never quite get used to that first moment as it develops wondering if this will be a Big One

    10:51 AM – 4 Jul 2019

    I can imagine…


  18. 18
    raven says:

    @Betty Cracker: Through the bj contact form, I forgot i had your addy.

  19. 19
    Martin says:

    Down to a 6.4. Right under China Lake Naval Weapons station. Trump is being punished for his stupid parade. Bet there’s damage at the base. Trona is also nearby. It’s one of those California towns where the coastal effete elite mine borax so y’all can wash your bums. Good news is that the mine was almost certainly closed today.

  20. 20
    Plato says:

    Sorry LA. I meant that for Washington.— God (@TheTweetOfGod) July 4, 2019

  21. 21
    Brachiator says:

    @Another Scott:

    You get used to small quakes, but you never quite get used to that first moment as it develops wondering if this will be a Big One

    It’s not so much getting used to small quakes.

    I’ve been through a few, including the Sierra Madre quake that did some damage to my home at the time.

    You get a weird feeling when you feel a long, slow quake. This one seemed to be at least 10 seconds. You feel it long enough to wonder whether it is going to build up into something stronger. A quake that is a sharp jolt doesn’t give you as much time to worry; you’re just in the damn thing.

  22. 22
    Martin says:

    @Another Scott: Yeah, small quakes are quick – they’re over with by the time you figure out what’s going on. Big quakes take long enough for your imagination to start working. My wife was standing in the kitchen and your first reaction is vertigo – oh, I’m about to pass out. Then you notice things moving and realize it’s a quake.

    I’m sitting at my patio table, so I knew right away it was a quake and could see things starting to sway. As soon as it’s rolling, you figure it’s far away. The jolting is pretty localized, and that’s usually what does the most damage, though the rolling can knock things off shelf and damage rigid structures – tall buildings, bridges, that kind of thing. Fortunately we’re pretty good at building for that, so usually there’s minimal damage. Then the question is whether it’s going to get worse, and how long will it last. This was maybe 15 sec or so. Too short for a really big quake, but that we felt so much rolling meant it was big enough – just far away.

    The Northridge quake was so damaging because we expected all of our quakes to be fault slips – lots of lateral movement – this rolling thing which like I said we’re good at building for. But Northquake was vertical, it lifted the ground up and dropped it. Before 1994, we didn’t design for those – we didn’t think they happened here, and holy shit did that fuck things up, simply changing the direction of the quake motion. Kobe was a similar type of quake with similarly bad outcomes.

    To be honest, when one of these rolls through while you’re seated, it’s pretty fun. Like being on a boat going through swells. I won’t claim they’re usually fun, though.

  23. 23
    Brachiator says:

    @🇺🇸🌎 Goku (aka Amerikan Baka) 🗳🌷:

    Do these numbers actually matter all that much? Money can only do so much. I saw a story the other day that said that a model that predicted the 2018 Dem wave in the House also predicts Trump will lose in 2020. Still early days and don’t take anything for granted but these guys aren’t gods either.

    I don’t pay attention to polls. I keep trying to tell folks that polls ain’t prophecy. Especially, early on.

    But I do follow the money. Again, I am not trying to predict anything. And I know that money alone does not win every election. But I am simply noting that the plutocrats are all in for Trump, and the GOP is not worried about donor fatigue.

    You also want to ask what the Koch brothers are doing with their loot. They are always up to no good somewhere.

  24. 24
    Fair Economist says:

    In my case (also OC) the quake *did* build and that made me feel nervous even though I could tell from the smooth rocking motion it was a good ways off and couldn’t possibly cause damage where I am (although there are sometimes sympathy quakes). It’s very disconcerting to be on a tiled first floor and feel as if you are on a boat.

  25. 25
    Martin says:

    @Brachiator: Polls are the meta for money. So they matter, but only as a first order driver of money – one which can be overcome, obviously. They also drive media coverage, which can be good or bad. I think it’s bad this far out to be the frontrunner in a large field. It never seems to hold. The media scrutiny always ends up highlighting some trivial thing and turning it into a fatal blow. Dean scream, etc. I think so long as you’re in 2nd-about ⅓ of the field size, you’re good. Nobody is really digging for fuckups for clicks and the money is coming in.

  26. 26
    Brachiator says:

    Shit is getting real with the quake

    EarthquakeResponse @kerncountyfire resources working nearly 2 dozens incidents ranging from medical assistance to structure fires in and around the city of Ridgecrest, CA. @kerncountyfire Urban Search and Rescue teams en route. 

  27. 27
    Another Scott says:

    @Martin: I was in a small quake in Dayton, OH in the early ’80s. Out in an old barn working on a car. There was a quick jolt and that was it. I started looking around to see if someone else was in the barn doing something, etc., etc. As you say, it’s only 10-15 minutes later when I realized what it was (it was only a M2.5 or something but it was definitely strong enough to feel).

    The M5.8 quake in Virginia in 2011 was another very surprising one. My office bookcases started jumping around so it was immediately clear what was happening.


  28. 28
    Martin says:

    @Brachiator: Yeah, 6.4 will certainly fuck up your picnic. Hopefully nothing too serious, but I bet there are some broken hips and collapsed chimneys, larcerations from walking on broken glass, etc. A friend of mine lost her dog in the Northridge quake when an unsecured bookcase fell over on it.

    Brachiator knows this, but for anyone wondering, the structure fire is likely from a broken gas line. One of the things you get drilled into you is how to deal with your gas line around an earthquake. Maybe a fryer knocked over – lot of people cooking at that time. It just scrambles your brain a bit – the pot of hot water is overspilling and you’re having trouble with your balance, and you don’t quite understand, but your instinct is to grab the pot, or put a lid on it, because that’s what your brain has learned to react to, but it’s really the earthquake you need to react to and moving closer to the increasingly jostling pot of boiling water surrounded by knives while the ground is moving is a bad idea. Usually by the time your brain sorts it out, it’s too late. And that’s the real risk of earthquakes – you can’t plan for the momentary reaction, nor can you really train for them. You go about your lives, and and just kind of hope that they hit when you’re not on a ladder or carrying a pot of hot water or using your table saw or whatever, because all bets are off then – your brain is just going to short out for a few seconds, and a lot of damage can happen in those seconds.

    Fortunately this is Ridgecrest. This is California’s seismic g-spot. I’m trusting everyone up there has shit tied down pretty tight, so hopefully lots of small injuries rather than big ones.

  29. 29
    Brachiator says:


    Fortunately this is Ridgecrest. This is California’s seismic g-spot

    Ha! Great description.

    And of course, for quake insiders, it ain’t a quake until we hear from Dr Lucy Jones.

    ETA. News report that power was lost at an assisted living facility. It’s a hot day up in Ridgecrest. Fortunately, response and reaction is very good.

  30. 30
    Martin says:

    @Brachiator: She was on TV about half an hour ago. We’re good. She’s still looking out for us.

  31. 31
    Martin says:

    Lucy Jones, California’s foremost earthquake expert, told a midday press conference at Caltech to anticipate more shaking on the Fourth of July.
    “We should be expecting lots of aftershocks,” Jones said. She estimated that there was a “greater than 50-50” chance of an earthquake of magnitude 5.5 or more Thursday afternoon.
    She added, “We should always be preparing for the big one. This does not make it less likely.”
    It was also a relatively deep quake, occurring more than five miles down.

  32. 32
    trollhattan says:

    @Betty Cracker:
    We didn’t feel nuffin’ here in the middle of the state. Luckily the epicenter is in the middle of mostly nowhere and deep, at nearly 11km.

    It has admittedly been a long, long while since our last meaningful quake said nobody the least superstitious.

  33. 33
    trollhattan says:

    Was very happy to be rid of the last gas appliance with a pilot light. Furnace, water heater, range all have electronic igniters, which is a much better situation should there ever be a leak, quake-sourced or otherwise.

    Not that there aren’t other ignition sources but an open flame is hard to top.

  34. 34
    JoeyJoeJoe says:

    @Another Scott: I was in DC for that. Being an east coast person, I had never experienced an earthquake before. It took me a couple of seconds to even realize what was happening.

  35. 35
    Betty Cracker says:

    @raven: All set! The contact form must be fubar from the site rebuild…

  36. 36
    Kay says:

    Piers Morgan
    ‏Verified account
    Follow Follow @piersmorgan
    Tonight, her cocky little arms stay down. Come on @Lionesses.

    I love this because it’s funny but also because it’s bizarre. Her ARMS are cocky and also “little”?

    He’s bad at..fighting. You would laugh when he insults you because he doesn’t know how to do it.

  37. 37
    Kay says:

    Will Sommer
    ‏Verified account
    28m28 minutes ago
    There are plenty of fences keeping non-ticket holders away from Trump’s speech and the Lincoln Memorial

    Nothing says “populist” like huge hastily erected fencing to keep the lower ranking Trump supporters away from the elite supporters and their family members.

    I can’t believe the Trump Family can block off the Lincoln Memorial for their personal use, but apparently they can.

  38. 38
    trollhattan says:

    Can I assume the twit is talking about Rapinoe? I do so hope he enjoyed Morgan’s cuppa salute (which she and Long mimed that morning getting off the team bus, for anybody paying attention).

  39. 39
    karensky says:

    I burst into tears as I started reading your Declaration of Independence posts. I am at a terror point in my life and I gotta shake it off and get more focused. Next Tuesday I will be joining my patriotic friends and neighbors to demonstrate outside of Senator Toomey’s office in Old City Philadelphia. Toomey is a soulless Republican who is in lockstep with McConnell and the president*.

    I am going to stay active to fight off the fear. It works. Thanks for all you do for us.

  40. 40
    rikyrah says:

    Thanks for these posts, Silverman👏👏👏

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