"Where does she find the energy, y'all? She is trying to single-handedly strap this country to her back and carry it to safety. And, no, she doesn't care if the country wants to go or not. Rep. Waters is that Auntie who attacks your face with a wet wipe at every cookout and has a ninja-like ability to whip a comb out and run it through your hair before you can ever protest. She is not trying to have you out in these streets looking a fool and embarrassing her, America! You need to straighten up and act like you have some good sense before she calls your mother on you."
I love reading anything about gigantic animate blobs of molten iron who secretly long to be concert pianists. It’s not a particularly well-populated genre, but in particular I’d mention, “Grog, Who Loved Chopin,” as well as the somewhat derivative “Clom, Big Fan of Mozart.”
-- George Saunders (whose work I love) in the New York Times.
You. Are. Exhausting.
You. And your bullshit.
You, the Senators and Churches.
You, the old men holding the law hostage to your whims.
Nah. That bitch sees fine.
Puts the blindfold on herself now.
Stockholm Syndrome, you know.
Happens after a while.
Shrug. Step. Repeat.
-- Libba Bray, Womanifesto. Read the whole thing. Feel the anger rise within you. Channel it into action.
"The writer Michael O’Donoghue used to say that the definition of insanity is the length of time it takes for a lie to be uncovered. The shorter the period, the crazier you are. By this standard, our president will be setting a new threshold for that definition."
- Graydon Carter, Vanity Fair
"People tend to think of activism as angry, and certainly there's a place for movements that express public anger. But activism that's effective doesn't all take place in the key of anger. Some of the most powerful actions to be a part of are those where people are coming together and celebrating community and resistance – anything from dance parties in the street to the Women's March, bringing people together more in the spirit of mutual affirmation."
- From this Rolling Stone interview with L.A. Kauffman.
"Okay, seriously, what do you think is going to happen in the next four years?
I have no idea. But I know a couple of things. One, where I stand, and with whom. It’s not with racists and bigots and the people who would hurt the lives of others just for a goddamned tax cut. I don’t believe every Trump voter intended to enable racists and bigots and the greedy (even if that’s what they ended up doing), and I think in time some of them will regret their vote. At this point, I’ll take regret over a double-down, and welcome them when and if that happens. And in the meantime, I’m happy with where I’m standing.
Two, you know what, if I’m going to resist for the next four years, I’m gonna have fun doing it. I mean, come on: Thumping on racists and bigots and greedy assholes, and shoving sticks into the spokes of their shitty little plans? That’s holy work, that is, and I’m going to enjoy every minute of it. Opposing Trump and his pals is serious business, but I think if you can approach the work with some joy, it will help. I’m going to take pleasure in sticking up for my country. I hope you will, too.
So let’s get to it."
-- Scalzi. Read the whole thing here.
Related: Let us all channel our inner Maxine Waters.
"An underappreciation of the Second Law lures people into seeing every unsolved social problem as a sign that the world is being driven off a cliff. But it is in the very nature of the universe that life has problems. It’s better to figure out how to solve them, by applying information and energy to expand our niche of life-enhancing order, than to start a conflagration and hope for the best."
- Steven Pinker, Why Things Fall Apart.
"Those worried that President Trump and congressional Republicans are about to enact a sweeping agenda may have an unexpected ally: legislative incompetence. As Carl Hulse points out in the New York Times, nearly two-thirds of House Republicans have never served with a GOP president. McCarthy, elected in 2006, has never experienced unified Republican control. Now Republicans have to switch from reflexive opposition to passing their own laws and being held responsible for the consequences. Turns out they haven’t developed those muscles."
-- From Dana Milbank's opinion column in the Washington Post.
Also also: Thanks, Todd.
"It has been a long year. For Americans who care not just about their own families but about the families of those they will never meet, at home and abroad, there is rage and there is broken-winged but vital hope. These are not mutually exclusive. To be alive and aware is to be angry sometimes. To stay alive, on purpose, as well as you can, for as long as you can, is an act of hope."
-- In Praise of Hopeful Rage, Sara Benincasa
"Bottom line: The Founding Fathers didn’t fully trust democracy, fearing mob rule, and so created a republic. They correctly worried that a pure democracy could result in the election of a demagogue (ahem), or a charismatic autocrat (ahem), or someone under foreign influence (ditto), hence the rule that a president must have been born in the United States. We know how seriously Trump takes the latter."
-- Kathleen Parker on the Electoral College. While, on the whole, I think the Hamilton Electors movement is doomed, I can help but support it because, seriously? This is where we are?
“Oh no,” she said. “The point of the lesson is: people are unpredictable, and democracy is insane.”
-- From this short essay by "Leslie Knope" of Pawnee, Indiana.
Also: a brief book review by yrs trly of Today Will Be Different, which you really should read. The book. You should read the book, not necessarily the review. I mean, the review's okay but really the book is much, much better.