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jff

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  1. I don't really buy that. Our form of government is designed and intended to be adjusted when necessary. It's baked in by the founders for the express purpose of maintaining as fair a representation as possible. We don't have that now (we haven't in a long time, but it has gone to an extreme under Trump and McConnell), therefore adjustments are necessary. I don't like the idea of expanding the court, either. I doubt anybody does. But the only options are to do it, or to suffer tyranny by a court (y then entire federal judiciary, really) that does not resemble the values of the country for the next few decades, or perhaps forever depending on how strategically the GOP games the system. I do agree that the refusal to vote for HRC was an inexcusable bit or ideological purist arrogance, and also sexism, but I'd take it back to Al Gore, or farther. Similar ignorance was going on back then, too. "He's SO boring." "Lockbox, har-de-har." "Replace my lightbulbs over my dead body." Bending over backwards to find a reason to deny support to the better candidate.
  2. Maybe nothing, but a watertight argument is worth preparing, and the talking points on this subject seem pretty obvious to me and would be easy to convey to the public in an effective way. A representative form of government, by definition, is supposed to be similar in its makeup to the viewpoints of the citizenry. There are not twice as many conservatives as liberals in this country. Therefore, the court, with its (soon to be) 6/3 conservative majority is not even close to representative of the citizenry and should be adjusted in number to make it representative. That's the argument IN DEFENSE OF expanding the court. The argument AGAINST a future republican president expanding it further is that, having now achieved a more accurate representation by expanding the court, the only point of expanding it further would be to create an unrepresentative advantage. Force republicans to argue in favor of a less representative court and you have the winning argument.
  3. That's an amazing story. What a great experience! It serves DLR right to have a drink spilled on him if he's gonna be an arrogant bastard. Best of luck with your chemo and recovery. I'm pulling for you, as is everyone here.
  4. On further thought, Ratt's Round and Round and The Cars Magic were probably bigger players in my limited MTV experience than Duran Duran. Quite possibly also true for some Phil Collins songs. I remember seeing You Can't Hurry Love many, many times. I can remember more specific details about all of those videos than any Duran Duran video, which is just remember as them poncing around on a yacht.
  5. We didn't have cable in my house, so I only got to see MTV when I'd visit my grandparents each summer, so my MTV experience might be different than others, but: Michael Jackson, obviously. The David Bowie China Girl video is a pretty massive one in my memory. Maybe Duran Duran. But Van Halen Hot for Teacher was a huge smash. Probably a bigger deal than Thriller for me, which I only saw after it had been out a while.
  6. I grew up in the '80s, and I think Van Halen probably makes up more of my musical DNA than any other music. I haven't listened to them all that much in the last 20 years or more but it is undeniable that they are a massive presence in my life and in so many vivid memories of my past. I cant separate them from memories I have of so many childhood friends (and enemies). I know exactly where I was and what I was doing when I heard as a 12 year old that they were becoming Van Hagar. They were my first music purchase I made with my own money. They are on the MTV Mount Rushmore. They are my grade school graduation swim party. They are my high school cover band. They are what the boys AND girls I knew thought was fun and awesome...which is a fucking revelation when you're 11 years old. EVH is maybe the most influential person who ever lived. At least when it comes to what matters.
  7. What if a few Republican senators dying or going into comas from Covid is how RBG's seat goes unfilled? That'd sure be a twist. I can envision Mitch McConnell right now getting the every Republican in the senate to write notes saying their dying wish is to vote for Amy Coney Barrett, and then if enough of them die, McConnell arguing that those are valid votes.
  8. I've noticed something about Biden that I wish he would work on, or that his team would have trained out of him by now. He'll start to make what is obviously going to be a direct, plain spoken and clear statement from his heart, then before getting to the meat of the statement he stops, says "Look...", then veers off into a related but much less clear statement. He does this a LOT, and if he would overcome this habit it would greatly increase the effectiveness of his message, and probably score him a lot of powerful sound bites. That's my primary criticism of Biden's performance, and of him in general as a debater. My criticism of Trump is that he's was and is a miserable, abusive sack of shit from the word go and stayed that way through the entire debate.
  9. Adding two still puts the liberal justices on the losing side of 6-5 (or 7-4 if Breyer drops dead in the next couple of weeks). There's no point in increasing the number unless you end up with an even balance or the winning hand.
  10. Lack of trial judge experience is not a deal breaker. I mention that because it would count for lot if it were in addition to her 2.5 years of experience as an appellate judge. And frankly, the first half year (or more) as a judge is spent moving into and setting up your chambers, hiring law clerks, etc., so 2.5 years is a pretty flimsy amount of actual case work. I think the standards should be quite a bit higher for anyone holding the highest possible position in a profession. I'll bet the standards to be the president's limo driver are more stringent. Certainly the pilot of Air Force One has more than 2.5 years experience piloting an actual aircraft.
  11. I'd say she's only barely qualified. She has 2.5 years total experience as a judge. While there is no requirement for a SCOTUS justice to have any experience as a judge whatsoever, or to even hold a law degree, I would hope that all Americans would prefer for our Supreme Court Justices to have served more time on the bench than that. Her experience as a judge only includes federal appellate court, and she has zero experience as trial judge. Her on the bench experience is slim enough that anyone would be perfectly justified in questioning her qualifications. I would hold the same opinion if this were Barack Obama being nominated by Joe Biden. I want to see the Supreme Court bench stocked with justices who have lengthy experience deciding cases. She does not rise to that level. For those reasons, I don't think she is "unquestionably qualified."
  12. I saw on Nels' Instagram page that he was playing on the new Joan Osborne album Trouble and Strife. I had never heard her music, aside from What If God Was One of Us?, so I didn't know what to expect. Anyway, Nels does some fine playing on this record, and has a few solo spots that are very satisfying to hear. My opinion is that Wilco has underutilized him in recent years, using him on the records mainly as a background/ambient sounds, with only the occasional moments where he gets to come up to the surface, so to speak, so it's nice to hear him play some traditional lead and rhythm guitar in a pop/rock format. When listening. I was convinced Glenn was also on some of these songs, but that is apparently not the case. The drummer is Aaron Comess from Spin Doctors, playing in a very Kotche-esque style, at least on some of the songs.
  13. I can't get the Ashes episode to play, but i'm enjoying the At Least... episode. Regarding your discussion of Sunset Magazine in the At Least... episode, and magazines specific to states or cities, which seems to be a novel concept to the Canadian host of this podcast, that is very common in the states. Most cities and states in the US have their own magazines. Here in Atlanta, we have Atlanta Magazine. We also have magazines specific to various statewide industries or interests. Georgia Music Magazine (now defunct) was one that comes to mind. Even Little Rock has it's own magazine, Little Rock Family. You could probably google any city + magazine and you'd find results. I'm kind of surprised this isn't a thing in Canada.
  14. Hey, Looking forward to listening to the Ashes episode later today. Just as soon as I finish listening to the George Clinton interview on Questlove Supreme. BTW, I agree with your take on Art of Almost feeling like an experimental track shoehorned into a fairly straightforward batch of tunes. That, and like you guys, The Whole Love is my lost Wilco era. It's my least listened to of their albums, and one of the few tours I skipped (I think I skipped the Schmilco tour, too). I was hoping what they were doing on Art of Almost would be representative the whole album, but instead it's mostly breezy pop, straightforward rock, and a couple silly moments. And a way too long folk song that I don't really like at all. Come to think of it, that song may be the main reason why I skipped the tour.
  15. I've listened to a number of episodes now, and have enjoyed it, but if I may I'd like to offer a bit of constructive criticism based on a couple things I noticed in the Art of Almost episode. When talking about Glenn's contribution to the song they make a couple of unforced errors. They say he plays a cimbalom. They don't know what this is, and guess that it is some sort of cymbal. That's not a bad guess based on its name, and I'm sure 99.9% of people in the world don't know what a cimbalom is (I didn't know for sure, and I'm a musician who has played in numerous school orchestras with well outfitted percussion departments) but it's actually a stringed instrument played with mallets, very similar to a hammer dulcimer. A quick Google search would have allowed them to explain what this instrument is, maybe narrowed in on the sound it's contributing to the song, etc. This would have added some interesting content to the episode, which is better than guessing and being wrong. Example of a cimbalom being played: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-NhCJMoDd5E Another thing was their discussion of percussion in general. They're right that listing "percussion" in album credits is ambiguous, and they describe it as anything having to do with rhythm. This description is not correct. In addition to rhythmic instruments, the percussion family includes many instruments used for melody and harmony, and others for sound effects (vibraslaps, for example). One of the melodic percussion instruments Glenn uses is crotales, which are tuned metal discs and are used in a similar way as a xylophone or glockenspiel. One example of his use of crotales is I Am Trying to Break Your Heart, which you can see below. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3paspn2oYw I enjoy the podcast and I'm glad it exists. I hope this criticism won't be taken as anything other than suggestions.
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