Tuesday Morning Open Thread: Catch the Fire

Speaking of setting fires, I for one am ready for Stacey-mentum:

Georgia Democrat Stacey Abrams said Thursday that she wants to make a decision this month about running for a U.S. Senate seat from her home state and thinks she could hold off on making a decision about running for president until this fall…

“My first responsibility is to decide whether a Senate run is right for me,” Abrams said during an appearance Thursday on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” adding that she is trying to determine if the Senate is “the right job that I need to hold.”

Abrams is being heavily courted by Senate Democratic leaders to challenge Sen. David Perdue (R-Ga.) next year.

If she forgoes the Senate race, Abrams said she thinks she could wait until September to enter the race for the White House…

I doubt she actually will wait that long, but it’s gotta be fun watching the Repubs who stole her last election running in circles worrying how hard she’ll make them work (how much money she’ll force them to spend) this time!








Musical Open Thread: Happy Birthday, Emmylou Harris

She was born in 1947. The phrase ‘forever young’ would seem like an insult to such an ageless lady, so I’ll just hope that we’ll be lucky enough to have her for many years yet!








Saturday Morning Quick Hits Open Thread

So many important / amazing stories that I want to share and don’t, because there’s never a good time in the rush of events. Here’s a few from this week:

Heather Heyer’s killer has spared the people who loved her some further portion of horror reliving the event. Per the Washington Post, “Neo-Nazi sympathizer pleads guilty to federal hate crimes for plowing car into protesters at Charlottesville rally”:

James Alex Fields Jr., 21, of Ohio admitted guilt to 29 of 30 counts in a federal indictment as part of a deal with prosecutors, who agreed they would not seek the death penalty in a case that has come to symbolize the violent resurgence of white supremacism in the United States. Fields is set to be sentenced July 3.

Late last year, Fields was convicted in state court of first-degree murder and other charges for killing Heather D. Heyer, 32, and injuring dozens at the chaotic Unite the Right rally on Aug. 12, 2017. The jury in that case recommended a life sentence, and a state judge is scheduled to formally impose it in mid-July…

Susan Bro, Heyer’s mother, said after the hearing she was satisfied with the result.

“There’s no point in killing him. It would not bring back Heather,” Bro said.

“It’s a relief to think we don’t have to go through another trial. It was exhausting the first time. I can get on with my life, and the other victims can, too.”…

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Jamelle Bouie is now working for the NYTimes. I second his thesis here — “Oliver North Showed Republicans the Way Out. Belligerence, shamelessness and partisanship can take you far.”:

The particular twists and turns of Iran-contra don’t mirror the Russia scandal’s. The politics, however, do. As with Trump and Russia, the White House itself was defiant. “Admiral Poindexter and Colonel North put their careers on the line to protect our country,” Pat Buchanan, then serving as White House communications director, said at a rally in Miami in December 1986. “If Colonel North broke any rules, he will stand up and take it as the Marine he is. But I say, if Colonel North ripped off the ayatollah and took some $30 million to give to the contras, God bless Colonel North.”
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You All Asked For It: 80s Music Open Thread

I’ve got nothing really to say right now about what happened in New Zealand earlier today (their time) that I haven’t said too many times before over the past 3 and 1/2 years. I may write something about it in a day or two, but I also may not.

But since you all have been arguing about 80s music in the comments to the previous thread, here’s a post with a bunch of it. Some one hit wonders. Some imported from across the pond. Some of it good. Some not so much.

You can argue over it in the comments. 1/2 the videos/songs after the jump.

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Thursday Morning Open Thread: Dolly Parton, America’s Queen of Hearts

… Although I always think of her as our Queen of Cups: loving, generous, and wise. Just for giving all those books to all those kids who need them, she’d deserve a place in the pantheon:

… “My dad didn’t get the chance to go to school. And Daddy couldn’t read and write, and that was kind of crippling to him,” Parton said. “He was such a smart man, though. He just had such good common sense. They call it horse sense in the country.”

“But Daddy thought it was just something he couldn’t learn after he was grown, so he never tried to learn to read and write. And that was just kind of embarrassing to him,” she continued. “But I didn’t want Daddy to feel embarrassed.”

Parton was determined to give the children of Sevier County something her father never had: early access to books. She started the Imagination Library in 1995, and involved her father, too. He was able to see the program take off before he died in 2000.

“He got to hear the kids call me ‘The Book Lady.’ He got a big kick out of that,” she said. “But he took great pride and felt like he’d helped do something special.”…

And if she didn’t have that golden voice, she could’ve been a successful comedian. From NYMag:

All of my life, I have been known for two things,” deadpanned Dolly Parton, as she took the stage to collect the MusiCares Person of the Year, pausing for effect, “Well, not them.”

“I’ve also been known as a singer and songwriter, too,” the country icon clarified. “Although, I’m not complaining — Ol’ Pancho and Lefty’ve been pretty good to me!” She then confided to the packed-to-the-back-wall crowd assembled at the Los Angeles Convention Center: “Everybody always expects me to do a boob joke, and I like to do that right up front.”

To illustrate Parton’s reputation as a stellar songwriter over the course of her five decade career, an A-list assembly of talent from across a wide swath of musical genres took the stage to perform her biggest hits and most personal compositions as the Recording Academy and its philanthropic arm MusiCares paid tribute to Parton’s singular accomplishments and longtime commitment to giving back at its annual Grammy Week gala…

Being honored for her contributions to music, Parton told Vulture on the red carpet, “means more than anything, because if I had to stop everything else and just choose one thing, I’d choose to be a songwriter.”…

For Nettles, who portrayed Parton’s mother in two television movies based on the icon’s childhood, Parton holds a particularly special place in her life. “For me, she is a mentor, she is an icon, she is a hero, someone I look up to as a singer/songwriter, as a woman, as a businesswoman, as a philanthropist, as an actress,” Nettles said. “She’s done it all, and she’s still so vibrant, still so relevant. I look at her, and we should all be so lucky, I think, to be able to have that kind of career and that kind of impact.”

“Those waters run really deep for her,” added Nettles. “You hear all of that depth and all of that gravitas in the stories that she tells, but then she has all this buoyancy on top that really draws us in.”

“I truly, I truly can feel the love in this house tonight — either that or my telephone’s on vibrate,” Parton cracked, telling the crowd she endured the career retrospective with a mix of dismay — “I really thought my hair looked good, back then. Can you believe that hair? Now that’s country music at its finest” — and wry reflection. “Watching them is sort of like watching porn. You’re not personally involved, but you still get off on it. So really got off on this show, tonight. Hey now, don’t blame me. At my age, you’ll take anything you can get. And I’m still hoping that I live long enough to get the Betty White longevity award. I’m working on it.”