Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for January 7th, 2022

Study holds warning on pandemic drinking

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Tracy Hampton writes in the Harvard Gazette:

Scientists estimate that a one-year increase in alcohol consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic will result in 8,000 additional deaths from alcohol-related liver disease, 18,700 cases of liver failure, and 1,000 cases of liver cancer by 2040.

In the short term, alcohol consumption changes due to COVID-19 are expected to cause 100 additional deaths and 2,800 additional cases of liver failure by 2023.

The new research, published in Hepatology, was led by investigators at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.

Using data from a national survey of U.S. adults on their drinking habits that found that excessive drinking (such as binge drinking) increased by 21 percent during the COVID-19 pandemic, investigators simulated the drinking trajectories and liver disease trends in all U.S. adults. The researchers noted that a sustained increase in alcohol consumption for more than one year could result in 19 to 35 percent additional mortality.

“Our findings highlight the need for . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 8:45 pm

Habits vs. Goals: A Look at the Benefits of a Systematic Approach to Life

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fs blog has an interesting entry, highly relevant to an earlier post on implementing Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The blog post begins:

Nothing will change your future trajectory like your habits.

We all have goals, big or small, things we want to achieve within a certain time frame. Maybe you want to make a million dollars by the time you turn 30. Or to lose 20 pounds before summer. Or to write a book in the next six months. When we begin to chase a vague concept (success, wealth, health, happiness), making a tangible goal is often the first step.

Habits are algorithms operating in the background that power our lives. Good habits help us reach our goals more effectively and efficiently. Bad ones makes things harder or prevent success entirely. Habits powerfully influence our automatic behavior.

First forget inspiration.
Habit is more dependable.
Habit will sustain you whether you’re inspired or not.
Habit is persistence in practice.

— Octavia Butler

The difference between habits and goals is not semantic. Each requires different forms of action. For example:

Let’s say you want to read more books. You could set the goal to read 50 books by the end of the year, or you could create a habit and decide to always carry a book with you.

The problems with goals

Let’s go over the problems with only having goals.

First off, goals have an endpoint. This is why many people revert to their previous state after achieving a certain goal. People run marathons, then stop exercising altogether. Or they make a certain amount of money, then fall into debt soon after. Others reach a goal weight, only to spoil their progress by overeating to celebrate.

Habits avoid these pitfalls because they continue indefinitely.

Second, goals rely on factors that we do not always have control over.

It’s an unavoidable fact that reaching a goal is not always possible, regardless of effort. An injury might derail a fitness goal. An unexpected expense might sabotage a financial goal. And family issues might impede a creative-output goal.

When we set a goal, we’re attempting to transform what is usually a heuristic process into an algorithmic one. Habits are better algorithms, and therefore more reliable in terms of getting us to where we want to go.

The third problem with goals is keeping a goal in mind and using it to direct our actions requires a lot of thinking and effort to evaluate different options.

Presented with a new situation, we have to figure out the course of action best suited to achieving a goal. With habits, we already know what to do by default.

During times when other parts of our lives require additional attention, it can be easy to push off attaining our goals to another day. For example, the goal of saving money requires self-discipline each time we make a purchase. Meanwhile, the habit of putting $50 in a savings account every week requires less effort as a practical action.

Habits, not goals, make otherwise difficult things easy.

Finally, goals can make us complacent or reckless.

Sometimes our brains can confuse goal setting with achievement because setting the goal feels like an end in itself. This effect is more pronounced when people inform others of their goals. Furthermore, unrealistic goals can lead to dangerous or unethical behavior because we make compromises to meet our stated objective.

Habit is the intersection of knowledge (what to do), skill (how to do), and desire (want to do).

— Stephen Covey

The benefits of habits

Once formed, habits

Read the whole thing.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 8:39 pm

The Unreality of Money

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David Troy writes in Medium:

The Tenuous Relationship Between Money and Reality

What’s Happening Now

Continue reading. There’s more. The game is afoot.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 3:44 pm

New cooking tools/toys

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I recently have purchased some new kitchen tools, and they are terrific, so I thought I’d mention them.

Cosori Air “Fryer”

I’ll never be comfortable with calling a convection oven a “fryer.” So it goes. I’ve mentioned before the Cosori I got after watching Michael Greenfield on Pro Home Cooks put one through its paces. I bought the one he uses, the Cosori Max XL 5.8qt model, and I’m very pleased with it. Cosori offers a 3.7qt model, suggested for small families, and after placing the order, I wondered whether I should have gotten that model, but once the 5.8qt model arrived and I used it, I was very glad to have it instead of the 3.7qt version.

The main reason to have the larger model is that you can put more food into the cooking basket in a single layer, so it cooks better. I have used the Cosori a lot to roast vegetables, and the amount of winter squash and/or beets or carrots that I roast at one time fits the larger basket much better.

I diverged from my plant-based diet long enough to try using the Cosori to roast a piece of wild salmon — it cooked wonderfully — and even a steak, for which I used a reverse sear: cook it in the Cosori at 170ºF for 12-14 minutes, then put it in a very hot cast-iron skillet (with a little bit of avocado oil) to sear it for the crust. The steak worked especially well because the time in the Cosori completely dried the surface, so it was easy to get a good crust. (If the surface is damp, the resulting steam prevents the crust from forming.)

Mostly, though, I roast vegetables — and pumpkin seeds, which do very well. I spray vegetables (or seeds) with olive oil, add a little rosemary salt (and sometimes also garlic powder and either smoked paprika or ground chipotle), and roast at 400ºF for 12-16 minutes for the vegetables, about 6-8 minutes for seeds. (It’s easy to pull out the basket and see how done the food is, and then cook a little longer if desired.)

A big plus: clean-up is totally a snap. Usually wiping out the basket and the bin with a damp paper towel does the job. (The two come apart for cleaning, but otherwise are securely locked together.)

I rate this little convection oven as an A+ purchase.

Cuisinart Spice and Nut Grinder

I’ve been using an electric whirling-blades coffee mill to grind the flaxseed I eat each day, but after watching the video in this earlier post (start at 50 seconds in), I decided to upgrade to a grinder specifically designed for spices and nuts and do more grinding of whole spices.

I got a Cuisinart SG-10C because up here it’s CA$30 cheaper than the SG-10 shown in the video, and, except for cap color, the two seem to be identical. The SG-10C apparently is a Canadian model only, so in the US it’s the SG-10.

I’m very glad I got it. The grinding cup has significantly more volume than the coffee grinder I had been using, and — even better — the Cuisinart cup is removable, making it easy to transport the ground spices/seeds/herbs and also making it easy to wash the cup. It comes with a little snap-on cap for the cup in case you want to store the spices you’ve just ground.

I’ve used it quite a bit, and I like it a lot.

Misen 10″ nonstick skillet

It’s pronounced “Mee-Zen” (as in “mis en place“). This cookware line started with a chef’s knife — and I have to admit that I’m tempted by that, but really: how many chef’s knives does one need? I’m satisfied with my Bulat knives (I have the chef’s knife and the paring knife), which — like Misen — is sold direct to consumers to keep the price low compared to the price of knives of the same quality sold in a store. (See this post for more information.)

But I was missing a skillet. I have my collection of cast-iron skillets (8″, 10″, and 12″), but occasionally I want to deglaze the skillet and/or add liquid (soy sauce or vinegar or fish sauce or sherry) to a hot skillet, and I’ve found that doing that with cast iron tends to strip the seasoning. (Deglazing is exactly aimed at removing the frond, and seasoning is a kind of cooked-on frond.) I do have a couple of All-Clad Stainless sauté pans, which work well in this regard, but one is 8″ and the other is 12″, and it’s surprising how often I want to use a 10″.

So I ordered a Misen 10″ skillet. These skillets are available in stainless steel, or carbon steel, or with a nonstick coating. I chose the nonstick, and it arrived earlier this week. Today I used it to cook my lunch. The skillet is skookum, and it works like a charm: the size I needed, with sides tall enough to keep things in when I stir, thick bottom, oven-proof (once you slide the silicone grip off the handle), and of course easy to clean. I’m impressed by its build quality and heft.

A note on cutting boards/prep stations

Misen also makes cutting boards — small, medium, large — but, oddly, they do not give the dimensions. I emailed to ask why they chose to omit such basic and essential information. They did not answer my question, but did send the dimensions:

Small:     12” x   9” x .625” —  30.48 cm x 22.86 cm x 1.5 cm
Medium: 12” x 18” x .75”    —  30.48 cm x 45.72 cm x 1.9 cm
Large:     20” x 14” x .75”    —  50.8   cm x 35.56 cm x 1.9 cm

I would recommend the Large for daily use in meal preparation. A large work surface turns out be quite useful.

My own prep board is a Charleston End Grain Prep Station in end-grain acacia wood, made by Ironwood Gourmet, 20″ x 14″ x 1.25″. Thicker = heavier = less likely to move around. Tip: put the cutting board on a dishtowel to improve stability.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 3:32 pm

Americans are almost universally satisfied with their jobs

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A very interesting post by Kevin Drum. The gloomsayers find no support in data:

Over at New York, Kevin Dugan tells us not to be fooled by a low unemployment rate. In reality, the job market sucks:

It used to be that when the economy was humming and jobs were plentiful, it was a pretty reliable indicator that people were happy with who was nominally leading the country.

….What’s changed since then…the quality of those jobs have been eroding….disaffected Midwesterners who’d seen their manufacturing jobs outsourced….And these unemployment rates are all based on a shrinking workforce, largely because of the number of Boomers aging out of their jobs, though that’s accelerated during the pandemic as people stayed home to do childcare or protect their health. When you factor in those people, and those who’d like to work even more than they are now, it makes for a wide cross-section of discontent.

This is a very widespread sentiment, but where does it come from? The . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 1:09 pm

Posted in Business, Daily life, Memes

Everlasting Freefall

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As a coda to my earlier post today, take a look at this video by Andrew B. Myers, narrated by Vanessa Kirby.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 12:49 pm

Dr. Greger’s Daily Dozen Checklist

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At this point, I know the Daily Dozen like a language, and I can easily throw together different meals during the day, easily checking all 12 boxes — well, not always the 12th: (90 minutes moderate exercise or 40 minutes vigorous exercise). But the food checklist I know readily, and I now can readily improvise meals that, in the course of a day, complete the checklist. My improvised lunch today, for example, checks Grains (intact whole grain kamut), Beans (tempeh), Cruciferous Vegetable (broccoli and also red cabbage), Greens (red cabbage), Other Vegetables (BBQ onions (like spring onions), tomato, daikon radish, cucumber, mushroom (a fungus, but counted among the vegetables), Turmeric (1/2 teaspoon), Flaxseed (1 tablespoon, ground), nuts/seeds (walnuts, sesame seed, hemp seed). I had 3 pieces of Fruit for breakfast, and I’m thawing a bowl of frozen mixed Berries for an afternoon snack. And I’m drinking a pint of hot tea (this morning, Murchie’s Ode to Joy; this afternoon, iced tea brewed from hibiscus and white tea).

My own diet is the Daily Dozen + 2: I have a square of Baker’s chocolate (100% cacao), though next week I’m ordering some Alter Eco Total Blackout, and two sheets of Nori, which provides the iodine I need.

Here he discusses the Daily Dozen and the reasons the foods were chosen.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 12:28 pm

Sharpologist takes a look at currently available adjustable DE razors

with 3 comments

Mantic59 has an excellent review of adjustable razors, and some are quite intriguing. Take a look.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 11:31 am

Posted in Shaving

Near-Earth space is starting to have a lot of litter;.

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The above is just a screen grab of a data visualization in motion. Click the link to see the real thing.

We have degraded the oceans with our litter, to the point where seafood carries microplastics (which are endocrine disrupters) and now we are working to degrade space. Humans seem to be spoilers.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 11:10 am

Shaving cream — and a correction regarding Viking Blades Chieftain

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This morning I decided to use a shaving cream, Wholly Kaw’s La Supérieure Dulci Tobacco. When I first resumed traditional shaving, I struggled to get a good lather from a shaving soap, but shaving creams were easy, and I had several favorites, among them Taylor of Old Bond Street Avocado. 

But because of the problems I was having with shaving soap, I decided not to use shaving cream any more, figuring that would ensure that I learned how to work with shaving soap. It did, and I discovered, once I knew what I was doing, that I preferred shaving soap, and so I now almost always use shaving soap. 

But I also like variety, so I picked up a tub of Wholly Kaw’s shaving cream, which is quite nice. He now offers three, including La Supérieure Peach Karma Shave Cream. If you like shaving cream and/or variety, they’re worth a try.

Well-lathered with the Simpson Emperor 3 Super, I picked up my Vikings Blade Chieftain. Several months ago a reader commented that it looked a lot like a rebranded Baili 179, and I took a look and realized that it did indeed. So I commented in a later post that the Chieftain is indeed a Baili 179.

Live by the comment, die by the comment. A reader in a comment provided a link to a post that clearly demonstrates that the Chieftain is not a Baili 179 but in fact is much better made (thus the higher price).

And again I will say what an excellent razor the Chieftain is: very efficient, very comfortable, and feels very solid and good in the hand. Today it delivered a wonderful shave.

I finished with a dab of Ejsberg Aftershave Gel, whose scent (and feel) I like a lot. Not need for Hydrating Gel with this one.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 10:58 am

Posted in Shaving

A string of unfortunate events

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Shaun Usher, in Letters of Note, recalls a locally famous event of just a few years back (and by “locally famous,” I mean here in Victoria, where the events transpired):

28 March 2018

Dear Empress Hotel:

This may seem like and unusual request, but I write to you today, seeking a “pardon”. 18 years ago a string of unfortunate events led to my being banned from your hotel. I would like to explain the incident.

In 2001, I had recently joined my current employer and I was also in the Canadian Naval Reserve. This new employer was hosting a customer conference at the Empress and it was my first event with the company.

I told my Navy buddies that I was coming out West and I was asked to bring “Brother’s Pepperoni” from Halifax. It is a local delicacy. Because this was the Navy we were talking about, I brought enough for a ship. In a hurry, I had completely filled a suitcase with pepperoni for my friends. Some of it was wrapped in plastic, some in brown paper. I took whatever Brothers would sell me.

This is the bag that the airline misplaced.

The bag reappeared the next day. I knew that the pepperoni would still be “good”. It had only been at room temperature for a short time. It would, however, be quite some time before I could turn it over to my friends. Just to be safe, I decided that I should keep it cool.

My room was a nice, big, front-facing room on the fourth floor. It was well appointed, but it did not have a refrigerator. It was April, the air was chilly. An easy way to keep all of this food cool would be just to keep it next to an open window. I lifted one of the sashes and spread the packages of pepperoni out on the table and window sill. Then, I went for a walk…..for about 4 or 5 hours.

When I had covered enough ground, I returned to the hotel. I remember walking down the long hall and opening the door to my room to find an entire flock of seagulls in my room. I didn’t have time to count, but there must have been 40 of them and they had been in my room, eating pepperoni for a long time.

In case you were wondering, Brothers’ TNT Pepperoni does NASTY things to a seagull’s digestive system. As you would expect, the room was covered in seagull crap. What I did not realize until then was that Seagulls also drool. Especially when they eat pepperoni.

I’m sure you have an image in your head. Now remember that I have just walked into the room and startled all of these birds. They immediately started flying around and crashing into things as they desperately tried to leave the room through the small opening by which they had entered.

Less composed seagulls are attempting to leave through the other CLOSED windows. The result was a tornado of seagull excrement, feathers, pepperoni chunks and fairly large birds whipping around the room. The lamps were falling. The curtains were trashed. The coffee tray was just disgusting.

I waded through the birds and opened the remaining windows. Most of the gulls left immediately. One tried to re-enter the room to grab another piece of pepperoni and in my agitated state, I took off one of my shoes and threw it at him.

Both the gull and the shoe went out the window.

By this time, I was down to one gull left in the room, but it was a big one, and it didn’t want to leave. As I chased it, it ran around the room with a big hunk of pepperoni in its gob.

In a moment of clarity, I grabbed a bath-towel and jumped it. It started to freak-out so I wrapped it in the towel and threw it out of the window.

I had forgotten that Seagulls cannot fly when they are wrapped in a towel.

This is all happening fairly quickly and this is mid-afternoon. The Empress hosts a very famous and very popular “High Tea”. I suspect this is where the large group of tourists was heading when they were struck first by my shoe, then a bound-up seagull (the seagull was unharmed, by the way).

Let’s go back to my little housekeeping issue. The room was BAD. There was a lot of damage.

I was new to my company and I was really trying to make a good impression at this important event. I decided that I would carry on for now and handle this whole thing later. I then realized that I had only a few minutes before an important dinner and that I only had one shoe.

I made my way to one of the side doors and recovered both the shoe and the towel that were laying in some wet soil near the walking path. The shoe was a mess. I took it back to the room. By this time, I had close the windows and the air was becoming quite ripe with the smell of digested pepperoni and fish.

I went into the washroom and rinsed the mud off of my shoe. It cleaned-up nicely, but now I had one wet, dark shoe, and one dry, light coloured shoe.

In retrospect, I should have just wet the dry shoe. Instead, I choose to dry the wet shoe using the little hairdryer. It was actually doing quite well. I had the hair dryer jammed in there and the shoe was drying quite nicely. Then, the phone rang.

I walked into the next room to answer it and the power goes off. It turns out that the hairdryer had vibrated free of the shoe and fallen into the sink full of water and the GFI* didn’t seem be 100% functional. I don’t know how much of the hotel’s power I knocked-out, but at that point I decided I needed help.

I called the front desk and asked for someone to come help me clean up a mess. I can still remember the look on the lady’s face when she opened the door. I had absolutely no idea what to tell her, so I just said “I’m sorry” and I went to dinner. When I came back, my things had been moved to a much smaller room.

I thought that was the end of it all until I was told that my company had received a letter banning me from the Empress. A ban that I have respected for almost 18 years. I have matured and I admit responsibility for my actions. I come to you, hat-in-hand, to apologise for the damage I had indirectly come to cause and to ask that you reconsider my lifetime ban from the property.

I hope that you will see fit to either grant me a pardon, or consider my 18 years away from the empress as “time served”.

Thank you very much for your consideration.


Nick Burchill

* Nick is of course referring to the ground fault circuit interrupter, a safety device which should cut off the electrics in such a moist situation.

Continue reading. There was a happy resolution.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 7:05 am

Posted in Daily life

Readwise free trial

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I mentioned yesterday, in a post on learning something as a language (that is, learning something so that you can use that something just as you use a language, to express your own ideas without (in the case of language) worrying about things like vocabulary, grammar, spelling, and all the other basics. Your adaptive unconscious has absorbed how to handle those, so your conscious mind simply follows its train of though (as I am doing now as I write this, having also learned touch-typing as a language: I just think of words — or even phrases — and my fingers do their job (generally accurately) without any conscious effort on my part).

In that post I mentioned that, for readers who use a Kindle, the service known as Readwise is both interesting and useful, because it shows you passages you have highlighted on your Kindle — and also offers some passages often highlighted by others.

I just learned that I can offer a free month’s trial of Readwise. If you accept that offer, I get another free month’s use. So if you read ebooks using a Kindle, I urge you to give Readwise a (free) try. Using that link gives me another month of Readwise as well.

And if you use any ebook reader, let me (again) point out Standard Ebooks, which offers free downloadable ebooks, well formatted (and edited and proofread). They offer books whose copyright has expired, which includes some very good books indeed — and some that don’t seem all that old (Hemingway, for example). They just recently released the new books for December, and you can review their list of available titles in descending order of recency (that is, the most recently available books first). One nice thing is that when they publish books that are part of a series, they show the books location in the series — quite useful for an author such as Anthony Trollope (and readers like me, who like to read a series in order).

And as I’ve noted in the past, I use Calibre, a free library management program, to manage those titles: I download the books as a file in the proper format, import them into Calibre, attach my Kindle to my computer, and then export the books from Calibre to the Kindle, all of which are done by clicking the appropriate button in Calibre’s menu. (Calibre can also convert an ebook from one format to another — note at the bottom right corner of the screen the little “job” icon, which shows when a job’s in progress and when it’s done, whether the job is converting a book or importing it or exporting it.)

Calibre’s library is important because, sooner or later, your Kindle battery will fail, and Amazon has been careful to design the device so that the battery cannot be replaced. When the battery dies and can no longer be recharged, you must perforce buy a new device. Amazon keeps track of your book purchases (on the Amazon site: Accounts & Lists > Content & Devices), so when you do get a new Kindle, you can readily download the books you bought from Amazon.

Amazon does not, however, keep track of books you’ve loaded onto your Kindle from other sources, so putting those onto your new Kindle is up to you. That’s why when I import a book into Calibre I keep it there even after I export a copy onto my Kindle. When I replace my Kindle, I still will have all my free books available, and I can easily stock the new Kindle with them.

And I repeat: give Readwise a (free) try. It leverages the technology in an interesting way.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 6:53 am

Refind, an interesting and useful newsletter

with 2 comments

I subscribe to a variety of newsletters — Big, by Matt Stoller; Popular Information, by Judd Legum; Letters from an American, by Heather Cox Richardson; The Honest Broker, by Ted Gioia; et al. — and I often find information worth sharing, which I blog (with acknowledgements and links).

Recently, I subscribed to a newsletter called “Refind,” which consists of links to various articles, with brief descriptions of the content at the link. It’s a short newsletter, and like many it has both a free version and a premium version. I use the free version, which has plenty to offer, and through it I have found a number of articles.

The links Refind lists are created through a combination of machine-learning algorithms and human curation, which accounts in part for the interesting variety.

Unlike the three newsletters mentioned in the first paragraph, when I blog an article found through Refind, it is not evident how I found the article. I think I’ll start mentioning how the article came to my attention.

Obviously, I can’t list all the links. If I share any at all, I share just one or two. But quite a few seem interesting. You may want to see more, so you may wan to subscribe to the free newsletter yourself.

If five people subscribe, using that link, I will get the premium version of the subscription, which provides more links (curated by topic) and costs $89/year. So if you do find the newsletter of interest and want to try the free version, I would appreciate your using that link.

I should add, BTW, that you can cancel your subscription at any time — as is now common, there’s an “unsubscribe” button at the foot of every newsletter.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 2:55 am

Posted in Daily life

The failure to protect

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Heather Cox Richardson writes about January 6:

Just before sunrise on a November day in 1861, Massachusetts abolitionist Julia Ward Howe woke up in the Willard Hotel in Washington, D.C. She got out of bed, found a pen, and began to write about the struggle in which the country was engaged: could any nation “conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal” survive, or would such a nation inevitably descend into hierarchies and minority rule?

Howe had faith in America. “Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord,” she wrote in the gray dawn. “He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored; He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword; His truth is marching on.”

She thought of the young soldiers she had seen the day before, huddled around fires in the raw winter weather, ringing the city to protect it from the soldiers of the Confederacy who were fighting to create a nation that rejected the idea that all men were created equal: “I have seen Him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps; They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps; I can read His righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps, His day is marching on.”

Howe’s Battle Hymn of the Republic became inspiration for the soldiers protecting the United States government. And in a four-year war that took hundreds of thousands of lives, they prevailed. Despite the threats to Washington, D.C., and the terrible toll the war took, they made sure the Confederate flag never flew in the U.S. Capitol.

That changed a year ago today.

On January 6, 2021, insurrectionists determined to overturn an election and undermine our democracy carried that flag into the seat of our government. Worse, they did so with the encouragement of former president Trump and members of his party.

This morning, the House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the U.S. Capitol tweeted out a brief timeline of what happened:

At 8:17 in the morning, Trump lied that states wanted to correct their electoral votes and pressured Vice President Mike Pence to send the electoral votes back to the states. If Pence would cooperate, he tweeted, “WE WIN. Do it Mike, this is a time for extreme courage!”

Starting at 12:00 noon, Trump spoke for an hour to supporters at the Ellipse, telling them, “If you don’t fight like hell, you’re not going to have a country any more.” He urged them to march to the Capitol.

Between 12:52 and 1:49, pipe bombs were found near the Capitol grounds at Republican National Committee and Democratic National Committee headquarters. (We learned today that Vice President–elect Kamala Harris, then a senator from California, was in the DNC at the time.)

At 1:00, Congress met in joint session to count the certified electoral ballots, confirming Biden as president. Pence began to count the ballots. He refused to reject the ballots Trump wanted thrown out, writing in a letter before the joint session, “My oath to support and defend the Constitution constrains me from claiming unilateral authority to determine which electoral votes should be counted and which should not.”

From 1:00 to 1:13, the mob began to charge the Capitol.

Between 1:30 and 1:59, Trump supporters continued to move from the Ellipse to the Capitol, overwhelming the Capitol Police, who were ordered to pull back and request support.

Between 2:12 and 2:30, the mob broke into the Capitol building, one man carrying the Confederate battle flag. Both the House and the Senate adjourned, and members began to evacuate their chambers.

From 2:24 to 3:13, with the rioters inside the Capitol, Trump tweeted that “Mike Pence didn’t have the courage to do what should have been done…. USA demands the truth!” and then “Please support our Capitol Police and Law Enforcement…. Stay peaceful!” (One of Trump’s aides today revealed that the former president did not want to tweet the words “stay peaceful” and was “very reluctant to put out anything when it was unfolding.”)

At 4:17, shortly after Biden had publicly called on Trump to end the siege, Trump issued a video insisting that the election was fraudulent but nonetheless telling the mob to “go home. We love you, you’re very special.”

At 5:20, the first of the National Guard troops arrived at the Capitol. Law enforcement began to push the insurrectionists out of the building and secure it.

At 8:06, the building was secured. Pence reopened the Senate, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi reopened the House.

When the counting of the ballots resumed, 147 Republicans maintained their objections to at least one certified state ballot.

Early on the morning of January 7, Congress confirmed that Joe Biden had been elected president with 306 electoral votes to Trump’s 232. It was not a particularly close election: Biden’s victory in the popular vote was more than 7 million.

For almost a year, . . .

Continue reading.

Written by Leisureguy

7 January 2022 at 2:34 am

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