The Watering Hole, Saturday, July 2, 2016: Marked With Fireworks and Celebrations

We Americans traditionally celebrate our declaration of independence from British rule on the fourth of July, but did you know that it really should be celebrated today? The Continental Congress actually voted for independence on July 2, 1776. In a letter to his wife, Abigail, First Vice President (because he lost to George Washington) and Second President (because he beat Thomas Jefferson) John Adams wrote that July 2 would be remembered in history and “marked with fireworks and celebrations.” But the actual written document, the one we all see, is dated July 4. And it wasn’t even actually signed until August 2. And the people who eventually signed it weren’t all there that day. And King George III didn’t hear about it until August 30th. FFS, is there anything they taught us in school that was accurate?

The volunteer fire department of the next town over from us, about three miles away, is having their annual fundraising carnival and fireworks shows. For reasons not spelled out, they’re having two fireworks shows, one on the 2nd and another on the 4th. Jane and I are lucky because we can sit on the rear hatch of our car in the driveway and get a pretty good view of the show, especially if the weather is clear (they shoot them up higher in clear weather.) And when it’s over, we close up the car and walked back to our front door. No need to drive there when we can see it well enough from home.

So how are you celebrating our nation’s decision to declare its independence from the Tyranny of England? Fireworks? Barbecue? Fireworks thrown into your barbecue? I advise against that. Exploitation of child labor to help carry out said barbecue? Happens all the time in this country, just like in some others. Speaking of which, did you know that there is a still-pending proposal for a Child Labor Amendment to the Constitution? It did not get immediate ratification, and a subsequent law passed by Congress to regulate labor, including the labor of children, met with the Supreme Court’s approval. But I’m not sure if that’s not quite the same thing. I wouldn’t be surprised if Republicans somewhere tried to deregulate child labor. Wait, I’m getting told in my ear that they already have, which is strange because I’m not wearing an earpiece and there’s nobody else in the room.

Anyway, have fun blowing shit up, but please, please, please be safe about it. In the meantime, may the Good Lord take a liking to you, and blow you up real soon.

This is our daily open thread. By all means, blow it up! 🙂

19 thoughts on “The Watering Hole, Saturday, July 2, 2016: Marked With Fireworks and Celebrations

  1. Randi Rhodes did a ‘soft launch’ of her return to Progressive Talk yesterday. Systems were tested and Randi tried out her new studio in what turned out to be three hours of Randi like she never left radio. She took calls from and went on rants on various subjects, mostly concerning the upcoming election. The official debut of her new show is Tuesday at 4pm EDT. It will no longer depend on a large Republican owned corporation chain of radio stations to get her message to her followers. Randi is now internet only, like other talk show hosts have found, frees them from corporate restraints. Her program can be heard at :

    From this link, you can access Randi’s new You Tube page, and watch Randi do her show or listen to her on a 24-7 player, which will carry other shows like Nicole Sandler, who shares the new studio, and precedes Randi at 2pm EDT. Nicole’s show has moved from 10am to noon, so she and Randi can share support personnel.
    If you already listen to your daily dose of Progressive Talk at the Progressive Voices Tune In channel, Randi will be available there live also.

      • And I never knew until this morning that “TORCHWOOD” is an intentional anagram of “DOCTOR WHO.” They wanted to keep the early reels and tapes of the show secret, so they labeled them Torchwood. Then decided later that this would make a good name for an organization related to the Doctor.

  2. I had disdained participating in fireworks for the four decades post Viet Nam. But the last few years, with the two kids growing older (now 13 and 7), I’ve been buying a set of mortars and rocket boxes and pitching in as fire marshall for our neighborhood the past 3 years.
    Gotta admit I like the bang and display when I’m doing it myself. Stay safe everybody!!

  3. Something I’ve long wondered —

    Our prettiest pollutant: just how bad are fireworks for the environment?

    Terrific, but toxic

    Fireworks can lead to substantial air pollution problems. There are well documented examples from cites around the world. In Spain, metal particle pollution from Girona’s Sant Joan fireworks fiesta can linger in the city for days. Across India’s cities, the annual Diwali fireworks cause pollution that is far worse than Beijing on a bad day. . . .

    Perhaps the best way to tackle the pollution caused by fireworks is not to have them at all. . . .

    • I can see this being a problem in large cities that frequently set off lots of fireworks displays at the drop of a hat, but I don’t think the problem is AS bad in smaller towns (not good, true, but not as horrific as Beijing), like the one three miles away that will be having a fireworks show tonight and Monday night. Jane and I can sit in the back of our car in the driveway and pretty much see everything, so we don;t have to worry about breathing anything bad.

      • Since June and early July are usually dry here at the foot of the Rockies, it’s very common for fireworks to be officially not allowed on the Fourth. Forest fires are not the best result of a celebration. Today it’s drizzling, though, so maybe those ‘not permitted’ signs will not be turned on.

        Personally, I don’t pay attention to fireworks, have seen plenty over the years and they’re always about the same.

  4. This’ll probably get Wayne started.

    Guy Leaves Fake Animal Facts All Over Los Angeles Zoo

    California-based comedic genius obviousplant has recently pranked the public once again by distributing fake animal facts at the L.A. zoo. Not only did he educate the zoo’s visitors about how owls are related to the TV series “Friends,” or why penguins wear tuxedos, but he also made the place a lot more interesting!
    Bored Panda has turned Wysaski’s flyers into a list that you can vote for and comment on.

    • Good thing people had time to recover from a night of celebrating before this went up. If one saw it too early, it might give one the impression they weren’t sober enough yet.

  5. Major Political News Outlets Offer Interviews for Sale at DNC and RNC Conventions

    For high-rolling special interests looking to make an impression at the presidential conventions next month, one option is to pay a lot of money to a media outlet. Lobbyists for the oil industry, for instance, are picking up the tab for leading Beltway publications to host energy policy discussions at the convention, including The Atlantic and Politico.

    And for the right price, some political media outlets are even offering special interviews with editorial staffers and promotional coverage at the convention.


    “There are a lot of ethical red flags here,” says Jim Naureckas, editor of the journalism watchdog group Fairness and Accuracy in Reporting. Naureckas notes that for The Hill to refer “to the interviews as ‘earned media’ — that is, as opposed to advertising — raises the question of whether these advertorials will even be distinguished from news coverage in the fine print. If so, The Hill is operating as a straight-up PR agency.”×585.jpg

    This is Lee Fang, so I have confidence in it being true.

  6. Chuck Todd says Hillary is one swing state away from having the 270 electoral votes she needs to lock up the election. Trump on the other hand, must basically run the table, to get to 270, and this is essentially what we had in 2012.
    It’s also what Chris Ladd said in The Chron right after the 2014 midterms, and what George Will said in the spring of 2015 on Fox News Sunday.

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