jump to navigation

Waiting… 26 August 2011

Posted by marisacat in Divertissements, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, The Battle for New Orleans.
trackback

.

A lifeguard watches from his chair at a beach before the arrival of Hurricane Irene   (AFP/Getty Images, Spencer Platt)

.. for Irene.

AFP:

[M]ichael Curcio, who lives directly across from Rockaway Beach, boarded up his windows piece by piece with wood as he prepared for the storm.

“I wasn’t going to do this, but the mayor convinced me. I got a good deal on the wood, so instead of suffering $7,000 in damage, maybe we can save the house. Or maybe the house will be gone and the wood will still be here,” he said with a smile.

But he was still undecided about whether to leave.

“My wife says she wants to stay here and see the waves. I told her I’ll put a rope around her waist and hold on as long as I can,” Curcio said jokingly.  . . . .

I don’t know what they are saying in the East but here it is being reported that Irene is shifting a bit East, and while it will cause flooding, be a strong tropical storm with surging sea levels and downpour, it appears to be weakening in advance of landfall in NYC.

Carry on! (no need for a[nother] speech from L’Obster, is what I think!)

About these ads

Comments»

1. marisacat - 27 August 2011

hmm earthquake in the South Bay… 13 miles outside of Soledad which is inland… not sure of the Richter.

Whole lotta shakin’ goin’ on.

marisacat - 27 August 2011

two in a row…. a 4.6 followed by a 3.6…. somewhere down around Hollister.

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

hope the china and tea cups are alright…

marisacat - 27 August 2011

I did not even feel it… nor the one of a few days ago, either…

And I have at times felt rather small ones… it all depends on so many factors…

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

I was in a 7.6 in back in the 90’s…shook the half the water out of the neighbors’s pools…it seemed like a wicked vibe preceded the quake, and then a calm…

marisacat - 27 August 2011

yes friends with pools in 1989 told me of watching the water make huge waves from side to side….

This house is on rock, predates the 1906 (by three years) guake… and is wood frame shingle… with a basement. So, no problems.. 3 cracks in the interior plaster of rooms with outside walls. That was it.

The friend feeding the cats said not even the water in their bowls spilled.

Nevetheless, whole lot of movement happening.

2. Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

Waiting for Godot? Waiting for more war. This is gonna piss of some paisanos for sure…

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration has expanded its role in Mexico’s fight against organized crime by allowing the Mexican police to stage cross-border drug raids from inside the United States, according to senior administration and military officials.

Mexican commandos have discreetly traveled to the United States, assembled at designated areas and dispatched helicopter missions back across the border aimed at suspected drug traffickers. The Drug Enforcement Administration provides logistical support on the American side of the border, officials said, arranging staging areas and sharing intelligence that helps guide Mexico’s decisions about targets and tactics.

snip
Many aspects of the campaign remain secret, because of legal and political sensitivities. But in recent months, details have begun to emerge, revealing efforts that would have been unthinkable five years ago. Mexico’s president, Felipe Calderón, who was elected in 2006, has broken with his country’s historic suspicion of the United States and has enlisted Washington’s help in defeating the cartels, a central priority for his government.

American Predator and Global Hawk drones now fly deep over Mexico to capture video of drug production facilities and smuggling routes. Manned American aircraft fly over Mexican targets to eavesdrop on cellphone communications. And the D.E.A. has set up an intelligence outpost — staffed by Central Intelligence Agency operatives and retired American military personnel — on a Mexican military base.

“There has always been a willingness and desire on the part of the United States to play more of a role in Mexico’s efforts,” said Eric L. Olson, an expert on Mexico at the Woodrow Wilson Center. (…) Understatement of the century and think of the irony about where this tool works; WW sent Pershing to invade nothern mexico trying to get Pancho Villa-GG

Still, the cooperation remains a source of political tensions, especially in Mexico where the political classes have been leery of the United States dating from the Mexican-American War of 1846. Recent disclosures about the expanding United States’ role in the country’s main national security efforts have set off a storm of angry assertions that Mr. Calderón has put his own political interests ahead of Mexican sovereignty. Mr. Calderón’s political party faces an election next year that is viewed in part as a referendum on his decision to roll out this campaign against drug traffickers.

snip

In recent months, Mexico agreed to post a team of D.E.A. agents, C.I.A. operatives and retired American military officials on a Mexican military base to help conduct intelligence operations, bolstering the work of a similar “fusion cell” already in Mexico City.

Meanwhile the Pentagon is steadily overhauling the parts of the military responsible for the drug fight, paying particular attention to some lessons of nearly a decade of counterterrorism operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. At Northern Command — the military’s Colorado Springs headquarters responsible for North American operations — several top officers with years of experience in fighting Al Qaeda and affiliated groups are poring over intelligence about Mexican drug networks.

One officer said, “The military is trying to take what it did in Afghanistan and do the same in Mexico.”

That’s exactly what some Mexicans are afraid of, said a Mexican political scientist,

NYT

Es mejor a morir en las patas que vivir en las rodillas…I just wish I had a gun that shot ganjasmoke or mushroom juice or something that got the target got so stoned they drop their guns, take of all their clothes, and start singing “de colores”…

marisacat - 27 August 2011

Nothing good was going to come from NORCOM being formed. Nothing good at all…

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

No doubt, and unfortunately the average american probably thinks its a good idea to further militarize the border…

marisacat - 27 August 2011

yeah they do… across wide swathes of the citizenry. Or maybe they should just be called “volk”. I’ve kind of given up… for one thing I can do no more than “sit in my cage and glare”… so………………………………………………………

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

volk, yeah that’s about perfect…brings to mind the old vw fahrfegnuggen ad campaign; sell the new, improved american volk dream, call it farfromthinkin’ or fukkenstuppid…

3. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 August 2011
Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

If some of those kitties are from siegfried and roy’s place maybe they could ship them to where brooklyn has the kingkong rats(ok, ok I’ll stop on the rat/cat jag)..seriously though it seems emblematic of the problem; we have filled the american desert with yuppie immigrants housed in woodframe homes resourced from siberia and watered from an ever decreasing snow-pack in Colorado; when the resource tap runs dry even just survival becomes impossible… recently re-read my old copy of the Cadillac Desert, a seminal work on water and development in the west, and one thing I had forgotten about was how Carter tried at the beginning of his administration tried to reign in the criminal scamming of water subsidies going to a few corps and ultrarich perople and that pretty much gutted his administration immediatley. The Dems led the way to his emasculation and even though he reversed course within the first year, the damage was done long before any malaise

marisacat - 27 August 2011

Carter did try… and I would never never say he did not have good ideas to do with energy and getting the fuck on to do ing something…. at a time when ti mattered.

It has all watered down to a much too much talked about fucking WH vegetable garden. As too many of the people begin to starve, or keep starving. And Mother Michelle wears butt ugly 570 dollar Lanvin sneakers to the soup kitchen (yes she did)

BTW Alice Waters was sashaying thru SF two days ago, making like a breathy mumbling idiot about her “plan for school food”, growing it on-site and teaching the little kittlepops about where food comes from. Except, as I emailed a friend earlier this week, she promised a 250,000 a year as a guarantor of the project, to the Oakland school that was working this model a few years ago. Only to withdraw the money one year in.

But still blathering on, I see, as if she really and truly means it.

Which is the problem with America. You do shit for real suffering people but Andre Leon Talley wears a 500 dollar cashmire knit hat with your name in brilliants:

“O B A M A”.

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

Orale! At this point of disintegration the meaning of life, the universe, and everything is reduced to a Fashion Statement; whether you’re a proggie with Obama rhinestones on the soles of your shoes as you gavotte between gross consumption of exhorbitantly priced rarities at “green” restaurants and boutiques while pausing to piroutte for “humanitarian” bombardments, and don’t get me started the PIGs of ‘merikka (Prejudiced, Ignonrant, and “God-fearing”) in their foreign mades weatshop clothes, goosestepping over the the rotting corpse of Liberty,

marisacat - 27 August 2011

rhinestones on the soles of your shoes

oh i love that song…. whatever Paul Simon may or may not be, Graceland… and Diamonds on the soles of her feet … AND the myth of fingerprints has gotten me thru many an airport

prolly would be no match for heil usa!! usa!!! TSA… however

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

Ah yes Paul Simon, well I won’t through stones for being a gabacho inspired by Africa and its diaspora but I will say his music improved greatly when he began to “colloborate” with the inventors of syncopation…

marisacat - 27 August 2011

They also refuse to credit him (nightmare that it is and was, as we live with the blowback) for the Mujahadeen “Charlie Wilson” supported war in Afghanistan agaisnt the Russians.

NTIM as the pretzels are all in it together… they know the bottom line.

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

They are all in on it together when it comes down to the bottom line for sure…one reason I’m not 100% sure they’re gonna boot L’obster; he’s doing what “they” want and the Perry/bachman/palin/Fascist Retard No nothings they’re dangling about are just a distraction, cattle call for the “PIGS” of amerikkka. When nov 012 rolls around unless the fool from the Rethugs has the improtant folks convinced he’ll be a better step and fetchit than Oobster( hard to achieve, IMHO) than the R wil go down to a narrow defeat, proving to the talkers we are a “divided nation” split evenly right down the middle” (/barf)

marisacat - 27 August 2011

I think it is up in the air…. but so often i can see, he she they wanna move on. cash in now. be as i call it Mr and Mrs International Black People.

And you know… Mandela has only so long to live… the world needs another in-synch, totally set up black man to bless their bloodletting (Mandela only objected when Bush did it… too Neo Con and not Neo Liberal, snicker). I am sure Muhammed Ali’s wife tries hard to sell him for the job, but a little too far gone for full employment.

Ganjafied Gabacho - 27 August 2011

HA! (must get back to work…ta for now…)

Madman in the Marketplace - 27 August 2011

There were a lot of things I hated about Jimmeh, but if people had listened to him on energy and water we’d be in a much, much better place now.

marisacat - 27 August 2011

That was the time to do it….

4. marisacat - 27 August 2011

Well whatever. Hopefully no one loses their electricity like in NC… at the least.

NOAA National Hurricane Center Director Bill Read, at the briefing:

“WE DON’T SEE IT STRENGTHENING ANY MORE. … By late this evening, … the center [of the storm] should be moving past the Norfolk area … Overnight hours, it’s gonna go right along the coast of the Delmarva [Peninsula]… By early [Sunday] morning, being near Cape May, New Jersey, moving up the coastline of New Jersey, affecting all the resort areas in New Jersey hours, and then making its next big landfall across Long Island, into New England, very near New York City.”

And I see soemone with an eye to the optics (gah) had Potus and Flotus and progeny and dog all leave MV on the same damn fucking plane. At least.

5. marisacat - 27 August 2011

oh who knows…. I do think, however, he needs a bigger assemblage of white independents to win the wet and shredded paper ring. And more of the white wimmens gotta get back on board too.

Maybe send Michelle? Oops no I don’t think that will work… AND from all signs and signals, she will be campaigning as little as pos.

FOR SUNDAY PAPERS – “Obama faces trouble with key voters,” by AP’s Jennifer Agiesta:

“Whites and women are a re-election problem for President Obama. Younger voters and liberals, too, but to a lesser extent. … An analysis of Associated Press-GfK polls, including the latest survey released last week, shows that Obama has lost ground among all those groups since he took office. The review points to his vulnerabilities and probable leading targets of his campaign as he seeks to assemble a coalition diverse enough to help him win re-election in tough economic times. … Just 3 in 10 white independents say Obama deserves to be re-elected and only 41 percent say he understands the problems of people like them. …

Twenty-seven percent of Democrats under age 45 say Obama is not a strong leader, compared with 11 percent in June.”

6. marisacat - 27 August 2011

Soaps

THE SHOWS:

–NBC’s “Meet the Press“: FEMA Director Craig Fugate; roundtable with New York Times columnist David Brooks, Georgetown University’s Michael Eric Dyson, BBC’s Katty Kay and NBC News’ Jamie Gangel

–ABC’s “This Week“: FEMA Director Craig Fugate; political roundtable with the National Journal’s Ron Brownstein, Democratic strategist Donna Brazile, ABC’s George Will and ABC’s Cokie Roberts; foreign policy roundtable with the Brookings Institution’s Robert Kagan, author Robin Wright (“Rock the Casbah”), the Washington Post’s Rajiv Chandrasakaren and ABC’s George Will

–CBS’s “Face the Nation“: Segment on the latest on Hurricane Irene; former Secretary of State Colin Powell

— “Fox News Sunday“: FEMA Director Craig Fugate; 2012 Republican presidential candidate Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX); roundtable with the Weekly Standard’s Steve Hayes, NPR’s Mara Liasson, former Bush White House Press Secretary Dana Perino and Fox News’ Juan Williams

–CNN’s “State of the Union“: FEMA Director Craig Fugate.

–CNN’s “Fareed Zakaria GPS Live“: (Sun., 10 a.m. ET / 1 p.m. ET): Pre-empted for live news (CNN Newsroom with T.J. Holmes)

7. diane - 27 August 2011

Concerned thoughts out to BooHooHooMan, NYCee (sp?), NYCO, Lucid, …et al ..if the storm doesn’t affect, it always seems the $$$$UZ$$$$ Governments will follow behind with their own hideous, sadistic punishment. ;0(

On a humor in the face of forever bleakness moment, sweet piccy here (story, ….though I don’t think I’d try to do what that fool is doin. …Shit, one of my most docile, petite kitty companions, in life, …turned into a horrifying TIGRESS …when hit with anything from a spray bottle, …go the fuck figure where the guy attained his nerve at? :0)

(will check back, hugs to all,….gotta run)

marisacat - 27 August 2011

Didja love Chris Christie’s moment to get on TV and excoriate tanning on the beach?

It was like “I am a Gay American!!!!”… calculated for TV exposure.
:lol:

8. Uncle Fred - 27 August 2011

BHHM Said to Say:

He’s Reporting in from the Greatest State in The Union with the finest Hurricane Preparation in the Land.

:: ( And on a personal note, Aunt Edna and I would like to add You all seem to be such very nice people for a bunch of Communists.)

marisacat - 27 August 2011

Yup… we are a covert cell!!!!!

CO VERT

diane - 27 August 2011

Dear Edna and Fred,

How kind of you, hadn’t known flag wrapped Walmart shoppers were so friendly either, ….and yeah, ya better tell that moron nephew, boo, to get off the fuckin beach, Chris Christie [Kringle] saiz so. Chris is sure he recognized your nephew tanning as he was jogging the shore with the National Guard, to patrol for dangers, …and, as I’m sure the two of you well know, ….Chris, ….is Gawd.

Sincerely,

diane

9. marisacat - 27 August 2011

yup.

[J]ust as Hollywood makes money by making us “feel good,” US imperialism and capitalism have maintained their power by selling the same message via Barack Obama. The ecstatic reactions of young, white, liberals upon the election of a Black man celebrated not merely the alleged defeat of racism but the defeat of the recognition that white liberals can be racist. We’re not only guilt-free now, but we’ve also shown how superior we are to our racist elders and European counterparts (and it really is poor form to mention Iraq, Afghanistan, or the racist prison industrial system — one thing at a time, please). And, to top it off, now that we’ve demonstrated our rejection of racism (even neo-Nazis prefer the term “racialist”), we are at last free to be racist! “Ironic” use of the n-word by chumps like Zach Galifianakis is the white liberal’s reward for so heroically placing the financial sector’s candidate into power.

The Obama Presidency and films like The Help suggest the final victory and inherent limitations of anti-racism as political correctness. With the election of Obama, Blacks have no more excuses, as John McCain suggested to enthusiastic applause during his concession speech. Because racism is now merely a thing of the past, African-Americans who find themselves in poverty or in prison rather than in the White House have only their personal failings to blame. In exchange for continuing to reap the benefits of “post-racist” white supremacy, whites are meanwhile encouraged to be polite to hardworking, self-sacrificing, and self-disciplined Blacks and unforgiving to the rest. In other words, racism, superficially criticized by political correctness for being “impolite” rather than for being idiotic, is, as always, a mechanism for disciplining labor. . . . . .

hmm worse than that even, everyone is free to JUDGE everyone else. Having put a black man iwth the middle name of Hussein (let’s not forget that cute bonus point!) in to the glorious WH, ANYBODY who is in trouble, is hungry, lost, poor, in prison, almost in prison, in need of help… can be reviled, BY EVERYONE else, no matter the color of THEIR skin.

it is a fucking free for all.

10. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 August 2011

Racial Profiling First Hand

I don’t want to excerpt any of it … worth reading the whole thing.

Ganjafied Gabacho - 28 August 2011

What do I tell your children?

Indeed. With the arrival my mi changito, que es puro guero, a very pertinent question.

thanks, loco

I’d tell’em some folks ain’t got no soul. That that kind don’t know a good thing when they see it, and when it comes to angels unawares they demand the mob proctology “exam”…so be careful, and you must be you, no matter what the consequences, because even your kith and kin can be your worst enemy in rascist world rife with haters….

marisacat - 28 August 2011

mi changito…. is a bambino?

If so, belated congratulations….
;)

Ganjafied Gabacho - 28 August 2011

Thankyou. Planned if you can believe it, but mom and I have only divided so far, and the little girl we hope for in a year or two will get us to parity/replacement (worthy candidtates, IMHO) and will stop for the benefit of the rest of the planet. It is true act of hope, and pro’ly stupidly foolhardy, but so far they greatest trip of my life. Sorry for the tardiness in reply, I’m burning the candle at both ends to fulfill my Barney’s order (la de da, look who’s a limousine liberal wannabe, name dropping douche bag-lol)

But yes, literally “little monkey” and specifically, in my case un orangutanito (don’t you love latin cognates?) due to his orange coloring…seriously, orange and white, of course. But we’re mud bloods too, mom is adopted and has some genetic markers that make me think native blood , basically she’s a little red, while I’m a sixteenth(whhopty-do!) mohawk (and lot moreQuebec FRENCH! oui!) on my moms side while I got some seriously blond genes from dad. None of this really matters, and i’m rambling almost as much as Iziyah Jahn, my son who seems to be intent on trying to walk and talk at 3 months…sorry, I’ve become the hackeneyd cliche; a goofy dad blown away by the mysteries of love and biology

marisacat - 28 August 2011

oh congratulations on Barney’s as a client!!… where will they put your things, I mean which store…. ???

They kept an office, ground floor with big open un-curtained windows in Paris, in an off street location, inside the Palais Royal if you know it… and I used to like to walk by during the big buying seasons, the cat walk days in spring and fall… they would have two numbers guys sitting there literally churning out the accounting tape… something sweet and direct about it all…

oh Fantastic on the baby!! Tho working out, or attempting to, walking and talking at 3 mos, on his way to adulthood… ;)

Ganjafied Gabacho - 28 August 2011

I’m not sure where they’re going to market it them. I’ve got to send the pieces to an address in manhattan…and it is a totally mercenary agreement, which is why I’m sweating it, ’cause a drop dead day is a drop dead day and everyday that passes makes that deadly day a day closer..

of to the grind…

11. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 August 2011

Continuing Wisconsin Protests Lead to Arrests

The mainstream media may no longer be paying much attention to the ongoing protests of Gov. Scott Walker in Wisconsin, but that hasn’t stopped activists from continuing to fight against the governor’s misguided policies. 13 protesters were arrested Thursday for refusing to leave the capitol after they sat in the capitol and refused to leave for more than hour after the building’s scheduled closing time.

The sit-in came after a protesters led by AFSCME and other unions marched from the Library Mall in Madison to the capitol on the first day state workers got their pay cuts from Walker’s controversial budget, that went into effect Thursday. Many protesters who marched on the capitol wore black as a sign of mourning.

marisacat - 27 August 2011

Trumka is saying that he wants to build Labor’s own orgs and not be swung from the chandeliers every two or four years for the Democrats.

hmmm Andy Stern said the same thing n 2004, even before la Kerry LOSt………. but if Trumka means it… WI is a perfect place to lay down some markers. Lines in the sand. Boxing gloves in the upright position… and then some bareknuckle fighting.

So [sound of toe tapping] anytime the big burly fellas wanna get to it…………………….. Hello? Anyone there?

Madman in the Marketplace - 27 August 2011

we’ll see what they do

12. marisacat - 27 August 2011

wellllllll not vry inspiring.

Leading From Behind to Victory – David Remnick, The New Yorker

You Think Obama’s Been a Bad President? Prove It – Jon Alter, Bloomberg
[Peter Wehner over at Commentary answers Alter, but since both are fiction writers, why bother... -Mcat]

Outside the Beltway, Democrats Are Winning – John Nichols, The Nation
[they are? -Mcat]

and here is a really big laugh:

How Obama Can Avoid Becoming Bush 41Bob Shrum, The Week

13. marisacat - 27 August 2011

Flooding has begun in ………………………… Hoboken…. among other places….

14. lucid - 27 August 2011

I just hung out in the hurricane for about 2 hours, shameless… I wish the worst of it wasn’t coming when I’m sleeping… That was awesome… I want the 80 mph winds…

Just saying hi from NYC where I’m lovin’ Irene…

marisacat - 27 August 2011

I’ve always understood why people don’t leave….

make some espresso… prop yourself up… stay with Irene thru the night…
;)

OH and KISS THE KITTIES!!

lucid - 27 August 2011

Gizmo will no doubt retreat shortly… It’s just so awesome standing out in the wind and rain… I was soaked to the bone, shirtless, and I’ve never felt better.

brinn - 28 August 2011

Damn, lucid, that DOES sound awesome! Living vicariously thru ya from down here in parched parched Tejas…

Glad you and the kitties are safe!

diane - 28 August 2011

MsExPat has some excellent, under the skirts, comments about Bloomberg’s hurricane Concerns here …and here …Clearly, mother nature is safer and far more inspiring to deal with, ..than the $$$$UZ$$$$$ guvMINTS ….

It’s true that they wanted to protect the system by shutting of the power hubs they thought would be flooded.

But originally, they announced they would be doing this 12 hours before the storm even got close to New York City.

After an hour or two, Con Ed walked it back and said they’d “monitor the situation” and that perhaps they might turn the power off pre-emptively in a limited part of Manhattan, later. (And they didn’t do it–the storm surge here was way less than the fearmongers had predicted).

I haven’t been able to confirm but I think that elevators in public housing complexes in the evacuation zone were indeed turned off. The city really wanted to move people out of their homes, and they had more tools to do that, obviously, with the people in public housing.

And they’re robo-calling public school teachers to ask them to “volunteer.”

From the comment thread in that link, a teacher says:

I am so sorry. I will help anyone in my neighborhood and strangers if I see them in need during the next few days… BUT I cannot believe the nerve of the DOE, Bloomberg, and Walcott over this. They’ve bitten the hand that supports this city over and over again, and now they ask us.. wait no – first they TOLD us to report at 10am to an evacuation center. Yes, told us that was the third phone call I received Thursday night. Didn’t ask for volunteers. Didn’t even tell us who they were – and I thought honestly it was a phishing scam. They stated bluntly that I was to report to work at 10 am on Friday to a center. But it didn’t end there. Friday the calls begin again – this time the message changed asking for volunteers and for the first time told us who was calling..

Yeah, sho do like like Bloomberg was havin katrina …wet dreams ….

(glad to know that all are likely still alive, ….as concerns the weather, …. on the eastern seaboard …I’m really envying those walks, wades and swims …. in the ocean … I love the Atlantic … ;0) …)

marisacat - 28 August 2011

I heard the [Red Cross] shelters were turning away people who arrived with their pets.

I had not heard of demanding mandatory volunteering. How awful. But — sigh — we live under war time terra terra terra rules.

Pretty obviously. How soon to a national draft?

brinn - 28 August 2011

“mandatory volunteering” — Orwell had nothing on this bunch…

christ.

Madman in the Marketplace - 28 August 2011

but don’t “mandatory volunteer” the rich to pay a little more in taxes …

marisacat - 28 August 2011

Out here about two or three years ago when a tanker of some srt from … Korea I think, the Cosco Busan iirc was the name, began to leak in the Bay, INSIDE the Bay… all sorts of grass roots rose up… and the ptb wanted people to take a LOYALTY OATH to volunteer. They finally dropped it. But it took days, maybe a couple of weeks.

To walk a beach and retrieve tar balls and oil sludge… a loyalty oath.

15. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 August 2011
16. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 August 2011

Dispatch From the Front Lines of the Wisconsin DMV

On Thursday, August 26, 2011, I accompanied my mother Ruth, who has just moved to WI from Ohio, to the Brown County DMV to obtain her Wisconsin Driver’s license. This was our third trip in 2 weeks. It was “successful,” in that we got what we came for. But it was also distressing, hostile, and as my mother put it, “sad.”

The first time we went to the DMV, arriving at 9 am, we walked into a room so crowded and rank with summer sweat, we decided to wait for another day.

The second time we went to the DMV, we were first in line at 9:30 am, and a line of 30+people formed behind us before the place opened at 10 am. During that visit, my mother was able to get her car registration transferred, but not a license. The man at the “information” counter deemed that her proof of residency was unacceptable.

You Are Not Here* (*unless you want to pay for plates. Then, by all means: You Are Here!)
Wisconsin has also just enacted a new Voter ID law, requiring a photo ID for a person to exercise his/her constitutional right to vote.

It’s a long piece, sad.

So, here’s my mother’s account of what happened next (also typed up in an e-mail note– we Meachams use the pen as a sword):

On its front the USPS notice had a banner stating: “official confirmation of address change “and listing both the “ from” and “to” addresses which it was confirming. When I most confidently (but still politely) presented all of this , the clerk said these documents were still insufficient. Less politely, but not demanding, I produced a print out of their website list ,and called her attention to each item in my group and particularly noted the section on the acceptability of letters from a government agency.

I told her that as the USPS was a federal government agency, I had met all of the requirements. The clerk said no– we don’t accept anything from the post office because anyone can change their address to commit fraud, etc.

In a more lawyerly tone, I informed them that the list did not exclude USPS , and it is a government agency, and said that if they didn’t accept what was listed on the web site, I would come back with a State Representative to assist me in completing the application process.

Upon her mention of being an attorney, and her insistence that she’d be back with a State Representative to assist her, a puffy, pasty man working the counter shouted, “Then we’ll just call the police and have you forcibly removed from the premises.”

“Really?” I asked. “You are really going to call the police on a 72 year old woman who moved here to be with family and grandchildren? This is what you want to do?”

“Well, you are making threats here,” said the pasty man.

“You are threatening her privileges, and rights,” I said.

The counter women who had been working with us interrupted and said, “Put it through.” And they began processing the paperwork that would move us to the next stage in our wait.

The situation de-escalated, and within a few minutes, the woman who had originally declined my mother’s residency on ground of potential U.S.P.S. fraud (yes, you’ve all heard how the elderly are an army of U.S.P.S. defrauders) came back to more kindly, more gently explain her reasoning. “If we process this and it’s mailed to you, and then it’s not your address on the postal card, then you have to come back with all sorts of items proving your identity.”

Huh? Whatever. I thanked her for taking the time to explain to us, nicely, what she had been thinking. But what I was really thanking her for was restoring civility to an exceptionally uncivil situation.

Waiting For Something
Another hour later, when our number was called, a freckled woman began processing our form. She seemed less interested in giving us a hard time. My mother’s license picture had already been taken (she did smile, too). The lines were long.

Tip (with bonus irony): It also occurred to us that we could present this clerk with– that’s right– the WI Vehicle Registration document we’d obtained on our last visit. It was, after all, a recent state government-issued document with her address on it. And so we did.

Now, I asked the freckled clerk, “Is it always like this in here? These lines?”

“Thursdays, yes. I think it’s because we open late,” she said. Then, almost under her breath, she said, “It doesn’t help that half our staff has been cut.”

“Was that over time or… recent?” I asked.

“Recent,” she said. She gritted her teeth. “I mean, it’s not like I don’t have a family at home who needs me.”

marisacat - 28 August 2011

My California ID is out of date, expired in 2007…. the passport expired August 7th of this year.

I cannot see myself going to the DMV but I will probably have to. Last week the bank “let me” conduct an in person transaction with the expired ID (I managed to leave the cash debit card at home by the bed… and honestly I don’t remember the pass code on it, either, tho I can still make online purchases with it), as I was only depositing a little cash to cover some purchases I made..

sigh. I dunno.

I don’t think it is necessarily worse, but I think terrible practices are now more widely applied. More creeps in charge, too…. I keep reminding myself that when I went ot the Passport office in SF in ’91 to get a new passport… I had every pass port I had ever had, but NOT the most recent (lost somewhere). And while the US passport officers MAY accept any expired passport as ID, they also are not required to… Eventually I had to bring someone with me to swear on penalty of perjury that I am who I say I am.

I nearly lost my mind over that one.

Madman in the Marketplace - 28 August 2011

it’s all so damned nuts.

17. Madman in the Marketplace - 28 August 2011
Ganjafied Gabacho - 28 August 2011

Jeje! Que chiste bien!

18. marisacat - 28 August 2011

oh this just made me laugh… the Brits, the Sp Forces supposedly (we are told), clear the way to Tripoli for the NTC (whomsoever they may be!!) but no go on handing over the goods…

Daily Mail Libyan rebels: We won’t give you Yvonne ‘killer’ and Lockerbie bomber

Mirror.co.uk – ‎57 minutes ago‎

Murdered PC Yvonne Fletcher’s suspected killer will not be given up by Libyan rebels – despite William Hague insisting that he will.

I think they just flipped Cameron the finger. A big version of it…

Ganjafied Gabacho - 28 August 2011

I think whatever else they maybe, the various permutations of the “arab spring” will provide many single fingered salutes to the same cocksuckers who drew the map lines for the ME in the last century (i.e. the brits and US)…

BTW warnerd’s take on the “victory” in libya is that it was due more to the Berber minority moving in from the west than whatever SAS did to open up the eastern road into tripoli

marisacat - 28 August 2011

I think you are right on all the raised fingers that will be flying.

Angry Arab indicates that despite much wrong with Eqypt’s seasonal change…. they are much harder against Israel than the Mubarak regime…

For the rest .. we shall see.

And yeah, I can easily see ti was tribal forces that cleared the way, with the UK trying to take credit.

So typical…

19. marisacat - 28 August 2011

new

link

…………. :)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 169 other followers

%d bloggers like this: