Monday, June 17, 2019

Important issues

I've taken a couple of these polls recently where they ask you what issues are important to you.  These polls have been on progressive websites.  I've been short of shocked that they don't mention reform of election law -- given the nightmare we've been through recently.  Here are some possible points

  • elimination of plurality take all voting (12 of 13 swing states in 2016 had no majority winner); 
  • recall elections for federal office (by direct majority vote -- since it's unlikely that small states will agree to eliminate the electoral college for the initial election, but several states have recall elections); 
  • requirement that federal candidates reveal 1040; 
  • candidates receiving political contributions from businesses should be precluded from voting on legislation affecting those businesses; 
  • statutory rubric for invalidating elections where there is substantial foreign interference; 
  • return to paper ballots that are manually counted

Friday, June 14, 2019

Tulsi Gabbard and Syria

So I'm having a discussion on FB messenger about Tulsi Gabbard. I decided I want to memorialize it here. I'm not going to repeat the words of my interlocutor, just my words. 

This was about Tulsi Gabbard's stand on Syria, her visit to Assad, and her cautious statements about the standard story of who used chemical weapons there. It might be a little hard to follow without his words in between, but I hope you will get the idea. I'm adding some things in square brackets to clarify. I am preserving the structure of the message bubbles in the conversation -- even tho, perhaps, proper editing would suggest combining some of these into paragraphs


There are serious questions of who used the chemical weapons

But the point is that we can't help these countries. That's been clearly established in Iraq and Afghanistan. Our military intervention causes enormous suffering, but does not cure the problem. 
We can't help the Syrian people by escalating the war
Remember that the corporate media smears people who are against war. They're part of the military industrial complex
I think there is reason to doubt our government's characterization about what is going on in Syria. They lied to us about Iraq. I don't know that journalists are actually able to investigate this properly, in view of ongoing hostilities
However, I find the US holding chemical weapons while condemning others for using them hypocritical. We dropped napalm and agent orange on Vietnam
 Yet, ultimately, the devastation we wreaked there had no positive effect
We need to remove the log from our own eye first
 As to what happened in Syria, I sympathise with Tulsi for doubting
She went there. She listened to Assad. She made her own decisions as to what to believe.
She was a nurse in Iraq. She saw first hand what happened there. She doesn't want that to happen again. I agree
 My dad came here as a refuge from the holocaust. We bombed Germany, but refused to take refugees [my dad was fortunate to get a student visa]
We fight in Syria. We refuse to take refugees
 I don't know that she believed him [Assad]. But she has doubts.
Granted, I think Obama [who started our involvement] was far more moral than Trump, but that doesn't mean he didn't make any mistakes [e.g. Possibly about chemical weapons]
 We have no moral high ground to stand on here. That is false
Yes, brutal dictators are bad, but what we're doing to the people in the countries we attack is far worse
 War is the greatest human rights violation, aside from genocide
What we did to Vietnam, to Iraq, to Syria is far worse than their governments' abuses
I'm not saying that dictators are good. I'm saying that our military invention is worse, that we can't help those people by intervening militarily. We overthrew Saddam Hussein and instituted violent anarchy.
 Being progressive doesn't mean we have to blindly disagree with Putin about everything
My dad's laboratory in Madison was bombed by student radicals in 1971, who claimed to be trying to achieve peace. They missed the Army Math Research Center and hit my dad's laboratory instead. A student was killed. My dad had to be forcibly restrained from entering the ruins to look for other students. Finally, the fire department went down, and found Dave Schuster under the rubble, still alive, though injured. 
 My dad had no offsite data storage. 25 years of the records of his research were destroyed, research that was part of the basis of the cloudy crystal ball model of the atomic nucleus. 
I have no sympathy for self righteous bombers
 The fact that we've had a good government, at least for white people, domestically, doesn't justify our bombing countries with a worse domestic government. That's nonsense. 
Our international behavior has been, in many cases, execrable


#Tulsi2020 #tusliforpresident #tulsiforpresident2020 #tulsiforamerica #tulsigabbard 

Sunday, June 9, 2019

Boy in the Window

 Here's some information about a show I'm going to be in

Cast interview with me

This is the ad for the show on New York Festival Site

This is to purchase tix for your people to come.  Unfortunately the festival doesn't comp tix

Meet the Playwright ad in Times Square Chronicles Magazine

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Abortion is a Blessing

I posted the following on FB

When I was growing up, the mother of one of my friends ran an illegal abortion referral service out of her home. She wrote a book about her experiences, called "Abortion is a Blessing." This book is now out of print, but is available free of charge on the website of The Freedom from Religion Foundation, of which my friend is now president, succeeding her mother. I started reading this book, but found it too upsetting, because of the extreme hardships imposed upon pregnant teenage girls who couldn't get abortions. Perhaps people will want to read it


It appears that FB is blocking the above post as violating community standards.

I protest. I don't think this should be blocked. It's not fake news. My friend's mom's act of civil disobedience should be discussable.


I may have misinterpreted the message I got from FB. It arrears appears that people did see my post  after all

Friday, April 19, 2019

April updates

I have a new reel

I've been performing with Cherub Improv, a volunteer group that performs in hospitals, nursing homes, and for young people -- and also gives workshops.  I've got an agent in L.A. now, so I'm hoping that will prove fruitful.

I was in a children's production of the Wizard of Oz April 7, where I played both the wicked witch and Glinda. Here are some photos on Instagram 

My art show has been moving through some libraries in Brooklyn: Borough Park, Mapleton, and now Cortelyou.  Flyer for my current art show

The most recent movie I saw was "Alita Battle Angel."  I also went to see Aladdin on Broadway.

I was recruited to file an amicus curiae brief in SCOTUS, which was due on tax day, so I had a hectic weekend.

Upcoming choral concert.

Thursday, April 18, 2019

Impeach? Or invalidate?

The Mueller report apparently concluded that there was substantial interference, but could not prove that Trump colluded with the Russians. Why is collusions dispositive? Wasn't the election nevertheless invalid, independent of collusion?  

People are assuming that SCOTUS wouldn't invalidate it, because there is no constitutional provision for such an action —  but courts in other countries have invalidated elections where there was sufficient tampering. I wonder if they were following constitutional mechanisms, or just flying by the seat of their pants.

The constitution has been interpreted to incorporate the English Common law, wherever that law was not abrogated by specific constitutional or statutory provisions.  The Common Law is a system of cases dating back for hundreds, maybe even over a thousand years.  Many aspects of our law, such as the “reasonable man” standard for negligence arose out of the English Common Law.

The English Common Law, historically, had two parts.  One part was called “law” and one part was called “equity.”  “Equity” included injunctions and laches.  The idea of “equity” was that where the result of law was too harsh, or non-sensical, a judge could, in limited cases, substitute his own judgment for the law.

Certainly, contracts are always voidable for fraud in the inducement, even if there is no provision in the contract for voiding them.  It seems to me that, by analogy, a statutory election could be invalidated given sufficient tampering or fraud.

Perhaps we ought to be considering a constitutional amendment regarding when tampering would give rise to invalidating an election, but maybe it isn’t necessary.  

It disturbs me that no one is considering this possibility.  No collusion, in everyone’s minds, means Trump until 2020, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

Wednesday, March 6, 2019

Working on low belt

When I first joined my college glee club, I signed up to be a second alto, because I felt most comfortable there.

Later when I got a voice teacher, she switched me to first soprano, because my high notes were louder than my low notes.  Since, then, whenever I have had voice lessons, teachers have worked on my mid range or my high range, but never my low range.

YET, when I look at casting notices, they are always asking for an alto belt.  Now I've finally figured out, I think, how to do a low belt.

Here's an attempt

Still working on that high belt.  Here I'm switching to legit when I get to about g4.