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Midnight's Last Gleaming, Chap. 12

The president pondered the two messages. The first, from an African country's deposed president whom he did not know, was warm and supportive, offering to share assets that would otherwise fall to undeserving usurpers.

How could his African peer have known how close Lincoln himself had, again and again, faced the same risk of failure at the hands of rivals? There are connections between kindred hearts, he thought. Not just wires, but connections of a spiritual composition.

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Midnight's Last Gleaming, Chap. 1

The senator from New York, his breath smelling of whiskey and his stump smelling of wet rust and wetter babies, at last exhausted himself and took leave. The president was free now to peek in at Mrs. Lincoln and then to have an hour to review his comments for Pennsylvania.

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Voting Uphill in the Sunshine State

The same people who want your whole tax form to go on a tiny postcard have made registering to vote an onerous process in Florida. I've done voter registration drives here for decades, going back to the McGovern campaign, but this morning I had to take a class and be certified to register voters.

A retired county prosecutor was in my class, and even she was perplexed by the legal requirements and liabilities the new regulations place on volunteers and their organizations.

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We Are All Naked, Enjoy the Drums

There is a camp here that believes Occupy Wall Street is not leading and not defining a vision. But we don't live in a totalitarian state that requires a revolutionary vanguard. Our chains are of our own making. So the value of OWS is not to lead, but just to say, "Hey, the emperor is wearing our clothes, and we are all naked -- and he made us believe we weren't!"

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Robots in the Back of the Bus

Heading to Occupy Miami and need my sign. Dan has a great concept with "Solidarity."

My blighted neighborhood, when I was young, was visited weekly by the library bookmobile. The rear wall of the bus was shelves of science fiction, and I grew up with the great themes of literature and myth retold in short story form as pulp SF compilations.

Man versus robots. The robotic servant turning on his masters. The retirement of humanity as robots ended human labor, and the dramatic consequences.

Change "robots" to "corporations" and the 21st Century prophesy is fulfilled.

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I Like Pikes

Dickens describes the post-Bastille populace parading through the City of Light with the head of Louis XVI's finance czar, Foulon de Doué, on a pike.

"If those rascals have no bread, then let them eat hay," Foulon had famously said during a famine. Well-fed himself, he broke several ropes while being hung by the farmers and tradespeople of Paris, who resorted to a sidewalk beheading.

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Obama Brand Has Lost Its Mojo

Just spent the morning phone canvassing for volunteers, with a few dozen other Obama supporters. Those of us making the calls had signed up online, so we were fairly hardcore. The folks we were calling were past volunteers and supporters from 2008. Our job was to see if they anybody is "in" for 2012, and to try to multiply our numbers by arranging one-on-one meetings for people to have a role in the ground game in my swing state.

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Tears for Osama

It's been great this week watching people who condemned Bush for not killing bin Laden condemn Obama for doing it. I have really never seen so much silliness. Who was speaking out in concern for bin Laden's safety all these years when we knew he was targeted? A little too late now.

While the Republican Party collapses under its own idiocy, I guess that's the cue for us to walk out of the Dem Party in droves.

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Why Politicians Suck

This summer I had the unique experience of managing a congressional primary campaign in a solidly Democratic district. My candidate was a sincere progressive, challenging a 12-term representative in a furiously anti-incumbent season. It was a long shot, but with projected low turnouts and the possibility that our opponent could be indicted at any time, it seemed worth trying.

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