Wishful thinking…

Wishful thinking…

I try.

Really, really, I do. I try not to get caught up in wishful thinking, which often leads to disappointment when I discover that the thing I really want to be true turns out to be propaganda designed to tie up the Internet and my brain space.  Continue reading “Wishful thinking…”

I was off by a month. My bad.

I was off by a month. My bad.

When I started writing online, way back in 2004, my blogging was a combination of minutiae designed to keep a then-deployed husband in the loop on day-to-day life at home. We were not quite to the end of W’s first term, but it was already clear to me what his election meant to the country, in terms of an erosion of civil liberty, of a dramatic (but by no means complete) shift to the right, and long term lasting damage to our reputation as a world leader by his creation of the USA Patriot Act.

In an ever-increasing feeling of depression and anger over last November, I’ve lashed out repeatedly at people who still seem to think that we are operating “business-as-usual” even in the face of abject corruption and cronyism not seen in decades in this country, going all the way back to the Gilded Age of the robber barons. Continue reading “I was off by a month. My bad.”

My take on Machiavelli’s <em>The Prince</em>, and a little history…

My take on Machiavelli’s The Prince, and a little history…

Okay, so way back in the end of 2012, I found out I qualified for a college scholarship. I got my first degree in 1985, which managed to be enough until we got to human resources databases that reject people if they don’t have the “right” degree.

After being stuck in a dead-end part-time job for the better part of three years, I figured that there was only one way to move forward again, and that was by going back to college for a degree that proved I knew what I was doing with web design and art. Unfortunately, the requirements for the AA degree (in Interactive Media, if you must know) included taking a basic art class on which everything else hinged, and without that class, I was dead in the water.

So, okay. Take the one class, start full time in the fall. I can get behind that, especially since I’m only part time at work anyway. But in order to get the scholarship money (or a fraction thereof), I need to be at least part time at college, and that meant taking a second class in something. Anything.

When I launched this blog back in 2012, I was already compiling a bunch of historical data (dates, names, events) for arguments on Facebook and Live Journal, and that was a darn sight better than I did the last time I took a history course (American history, and I got an incomplete, so there was a reason to worry).

I looked at the catalog and found World History to Modern Times. The actual range of dates (which I wasn’t expecting when I walked in that first day) was 962-1949. Daunting? You bet. Until the professor allowed me to use my laptop for taking notes. That, friends, changed everything. And it’s a good thing, too, because I still have the spreadsheet I used for tracking my timeline. Continue reading “My take on Machiavelli’s The Prince, and a little history…”

Connecting the Dots, Part 3

Connecting the Dots, Part 3

When I wrote this post back in 2012, just before the 2012 election, I was doing everything in my power to get the word out that we couldn’t elect Mitt Romney because he was backed by American Fascists.

Election 2012: Presidential Debate Number Two and the return of President Obama

Election 2012: Presidential Debate Number Two and the return of President Obama

Unlike the first Presidential debate on October 3, last night’s event was a hands-down smack-down. And unlike the world four years ago, it was wholly possible to follow the minds of friends and the press as they called each candidate out in real time. With the added bonus of fact-checking at the fingertips of savvy and skilled Google-searching and an understanding of the issues at hand, it was possible to track each assertion and cry “Foul” out loud, not just to the television or radio, but to willing listeners tuned in to Facebook, Twitter and elsewhere.

The results: Some of the fastest super-debate connections to reality, at least insofar as we can know it outside the Oval Office.

I hesitate to use the term non-partisan because everyone has an agenda, so I will present the following as a series of what I consider to be reliable sources for gaining insight into the various issues raised last night and how each candidate handled them.

There were only two candidates on view, but one other was involved in a public act of civil disobedience that should be noted here. Dr. Jill Stein and Gary Johnson have both achieved enough ballot placements that they should have been allowed into the debate process, if only to provide a clearer picture of the options available on November 6.

At some future point, I will address the question of our two-party system and what it would take to change our government to a coalition-style more similar to today’s structure in the UK and elsewhere. At the moment, I want to stick to what we saw last night.

FactCheck.org is my first best source for confirming the positions declared and how they relate to the truth. Overall, both candidates made some assertions that have been proved to be either half-truths or misstatements, but the overwhelming majority of false or misleading claims came from Gov. Romney. His often bullying behavior and condescending attitude took away a lot of what I think he hoped to accomplish last night. Several times he was called out, once by moderator Candy Crawley herself, for these misstatements.

Politifact.com calls it their Truth-o-meter, and covers both candidates’ claims with facts that check out from True to Pants on Fire.

Far more liberal-leaning ThinkProgress blogged live with fact-checking links and media through the debate.

But that’s not all. With the speed of lightning, these articles appeared in various places on the Internet, calling out Romney’s game plans (and Obama’s, where necessary).

Slate.com: Five Bad Ideas in Tonight’s Debate and Acts of Terror—or an Error? Republicans twist themselves in knots over the meaning of the word “terror”—and miss the point call out both candidates, but more notably Romney, for failing to talk about the issues raised in the questions they were asked.

NPR: How Obama Got His Groove Back, And Other Debate Takeaways takes the issues and clarifies what did (and did not) happen during last night’s debate.

Huffington Post: Mitt Romney Tax Plan Math Doesn’t Add Up addresses the numbers from several sources, for comparison.

Then there’s the question of how each candidate came off from a personal level. I can take comfort in knowing I’m not the only woman who was offended by Romney’s unbelievable claim that he was presented with “binders full of women” from whom he could choose for his cabinet. Frankly, it’s a wonder he found one he considered suitable for the job. You would think he could have found more if he’d really wanted. Even the Guardian UK noticed how this sounded. Considering Romney’s stellar performance when he visited the UK earlier this year, it’s no surprise they noticed.

In fact, this speaks volumes about the problem with electing Romney to the most visible office in the US. His claims regarding China aren’t just seated in a “say it now, take it back later” method of mendacity. He really seems to believe nobody is listening to him outside of the voters who might (or might not) put him in office. Claiming it’s the administration’s fault that we’re in so deep to China ignores his own role as a job creator in that country. Sensata Technologies is Bain-owned and is destroying an Illinois town right now with a move that is simply reprehensible in today’s awful job market.

Romney’s claim that he led a bi-partisan government in Massachusetts is also patently false. Even the few things he seems to have done right he disavowed last night (particularly with regard to coal and gun control).

Of all these things, Rachel Maddow has it right with this clip from September 26th. Check out Romney’s YouTube channel and you’ll find all the videos Maddow highlights.

I know there aren’t very many Romney supporters reading my posts. I’ve taken it for granted that for the most part I’m preaching to a choir that, also for the most part will either ignore me or forward the things I’ve posted.

I can only hope that if you are still considering voting for Romney, for whatever reason, you will see that the foundation of Romney’s claim that he will find 12,000,000 jobs is falsely based on reports that simply don’t hold up.

The payoff quote: “Greg Sargent added, “Let’s recap what Kessler has discovered here. The plan that is central to Romney’s candidacy on the most important issue of this election — jobs — is a complete sham. This is every bit as bad — or worse — than Romney’s claim to have created 100,000 jobs at Bain, or his vow to cut spending by eliminating whole agencies without saying which ones, or his refusal to say how he’ll pay for his tax cuts.””You still have a little under three weeks to do the research and see what Romney claims are the reports that back his numbers up. Listen closely to all the things he DOESN’T say when you watch the final debate, or if you’ll read the transcript from last night. There are far too many unknowns for us to live with a George W. Bush clone for four years.I have little hope that the House and Senate balance will tip enough to repair the damage of the last four years, but I can say this: Whatever obstructions the GOP have put in the way of progress are still better than anything this vulture capitalist will do to us if he gets into power.

Look up Bainport and see what I mean.

36 Windows: October 15, 2012 – World News

36 Windows: October 15, 2012 – World News

As Malala Yousafzai continues her recovery (insofar as you can call it that) Pakistanis and Afghans are rising up against the Taliban. Their reaction? Complaints of a “bias” in coverage. Where have we heard those words before?

In a move that some have anticipated and others dreaded, the UK has taken steps to begin a process that could end over 300 years of British rule over Scotland. While success is by no means certain, and consequences unclear, this is a huge step forward.

Pakistani Taliban

Pakistani Taliban Declare War on Media
As Malala Yousafzai lands in Britain, still fighting for her life, militants complain that coverage of the schoolgirl’s shooting has been “biased” against them. Sami Yousafzai reports. (The Daily Beast):
http://www.thedailybeast.com/articles/2012/10/16/pakistani-taliban-declare-war-on-media.html

Scottish Independence

Agreement Signed on Scottish Independence Vote (The New York Times):
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/16/world/europe/scottish-independence-vote-agreement.html

Britain, Scotland sign deal to allow independence vote (The Washington Post):
http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/britain-scotland-sign-deal-to-allow-independence-vote/2012/10/15/3ca72b5c-16c7-11e2-a346-f24efc680b8d_story.html

Back to October 15, 2012 “36 Windows…”

It’s about damn time! I thought they’d never get there!

It’s about damn time! I thought they’d never get there!

From: (ImpeachBush@VoteToImpeach.org)
Sent: Mon 6/09/08 10:32 PM

“Breaking News:
Articles of Impeachment Being Introduced in Congress Right Now

Right now, Monday night, Rep. Dennis Kucinich is on the floor of the House of Representatives introducing articles of impeachment against George W. Bush. He is presenting a 35 count indictment which is being broadcast on C-Span. We will provide a more detailed update, but wanted to be sure to let everyone know right away.

The intense work of the ImpeachBush.org/VoteToImpeach membership is forcing impeachment on the table. During ImpeachBush.org’s National Call In Day for Impeachment held just one week ago, the offices of Rep. John Conyers were flooded with calls demanding impeachment. We have received reports that there were more calls than could even be answered.

Your work and perseverance is making the difference!”

Time to take them DOWN!

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Efforts_to_impeach_George_W._Bush

Impeachment is not a get-out-of-jail-free card. It’s the first step in the process. I don’t see how you can get double-indemnity from that. They’re two separate processes, sponsored by two different branches of government.

The complete set of articles of impeachment presented this evening is already posted in the Wikipedia article. I’d look at it quick, because the revisionists will almost certainly follow.

See, now here’s the thing. The longer we wait, the more crap’s coming out. And now, with Scott M. coming clean in his book, I really believe the peace movement will manage to win out and this amazing loon of a President is finally going to get what he should have gotten a little over five years ago when he started us down this path by trying to finish a war his father knew better than to start. (Which, by the way, is maybe the only good thing GHWB ever did in office.)

Have you noticed lately how much we’re paying for gas? Have you maybe forgotten that our illustrious president is an oil man?

It’s very nice that we’re providing a grand trust fund for his darling twins, but quite frankly I’d rather not be worried about how I’m going to keep my house in an economy that requires me to pay $45 to fill my tank weekly, because that’s what it costs me to get to the job that doesn’t actually cover the mortgage, the food and the gas I have to pay for it, the child care I have to cover to work there, and the utilities that help me write this little missive.

Oh, and one more thing, while we’re talking about the upcoming election: What, exactly, will your fav alternative (McCain?) do to help get us the hell out of the Vietnam of the new Millenium? Another four years of complete failure to accept responsibility?

I’m thinking signs point to “no, thanks.” We wouldn’t need the extra taxes if our lovely administration hadn’t spent us into the situation in the first place. Nice to point fingers at the new guy. That’s very convenient.

After all, Bush didn’t take on an intern. He just asked the country to bend over and smile.

Hell, yeah, I’m backing Obama. I backed him before Hillary had to concede. Not gonna stop now…

Current Mood: Jubilant
Current Location: 7th Heaven
Current Music: We’re not gonna take it!

Comments:

JH:
For god sakes stop – you don’t know what you’re doing!
Impeachment kicks him out of an office he’ll only hold for 7 more months. Big deal.

It may take years but eventually the required documents will be declassified. And when they are, based on what is currently visible, there is probably a pretty damn good case for a capital charge of war crimes if not direct treason. If he’s impeached he’ll skate on “double indemnity”.

Patience.

Me:
Re: For god sakes stop – you don’t know what you’re doing!
Not according to this:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Movement_to_impeach_George_W._Bush

Impeachment is not a get-out-of-jail-free card. It’s the first step in the process. I don’t see how you can get double-indemnity from that. They’re two separate processes, sponsored by two different branches of government.

The complete set of articles of impeachment presented this evening is already posted in the Wikipedia article. I’d look at it quick, because the revisionists will almost certainly follow.

How do you figure?

DD:
The words you’re want here are double jeopardy – double indemnity is a Fred McMurray movie.

JH:
I plead reading an insurance spam fax earlier.

NR:
guys, this is really scary…one loon starting something he couldn’t generate for a few years, no more than one or two others will support him in congress, every single person in this country except a crazy fringe doesn’t take it seriously, and you still making news out of it…don’t you have something better to do, like asking your guy Obama why he only wants to tax evil rich and not execute them?…:)

Me:
See, now here’s the thing. The longer we wait, the more crap’s coming out. And now, with Scott M. coming clean in his book, I really believe the peace movement will manage to win out and this amazing loon of a President is finally going to get what he should have gotten a little over five years ago when he started us down this path by trying to finish a war his father knew better than to start. (Which, by the way, is maybe the only good thing GHWB ever did in office.)

Have you noticed lately how much we’re paying for gas? Have you maybe forgotten that our illustrious president is an oil man?

It’s very nice that we’re providing a grand trust fund for his darling twins, but quite frankly I’d rather not be worried about how I’m going to keep my house in an economy that requires me to pay $45 to fill my tank weekly, because that’s what it costs me to get to the job that doesn’t actually cover the mortgage, the food and the gas I have to pay for it, the child care I have to cover to work there, and the utilities that help me write this little missive.

Oh, and one more thing, while we’re talking about the upcoming election: What, exactly, will your fav alternative (McCain?) do to help get us the hell out of the Vietnam of the new Millenium? Another four years of complete failure to accept responsibility?

I’m thinking signs point to “no, thanks.” We wouldn’t need the extra taxes if our lovely administration hadn’t spent us into the situation in the first place. Nice to point fingers at the new guy. That’s very convenient.

After all, Bush didn’t take on an intern. He just asked the country to bend over and smile.

Hell, yeah, I’m backing Obama. I backed him before Hillary had to concede. Not gonna stop now…

Peace, bro.

NR:
A quick question…how will a new hero, Barrack Obama, lower the price we are paying at the pump? I am not smart enough to understand, can you enlighten me, please. I am from the old, stupid school that prices are driven by supply and demand. You know better. Explain if you can. And another question. How our president did managed that Western Europe is paying twice as us for gas? Wow, his powers are really unlimited.
And on another subject. If your boy takes us out of Iraq as he promises, what do we leave behind? I know it is a touch question, think before answering…

Me:
Gee! I must have struck a chord. Let’s see if I can answer your questions…

1. I don’t believe I said Senator Obama will magically lower the price of gas. I believe I said “Have you noticed lately how much we’re paying for gas? Have you maybe forgotten that our illustrious president is an oil man?”

There is no implication in this statement that a quick fix is in the offing or even possible. I’ve expected the gas prices to go up since Bush declared war on Iraq in 2003. I sold my Sienna two years ago and bought a Matrix instead. I can’t transport as much as I could before, but at least I can get 350 miles per tank for that $45.

I don’t believe anyone will generate a quick fix for gas prices. Unfortunately, this mess is something created by our former Republican-run government, and there’s only so much we’ll be able to do in our present condition. Sadly, Emperor Bush is fiddling while the USA burns.

2. European gas prices have been high for a while. That’s why so many Europeans choose to take public transportation instead. The Chinese have known about bicycles for ages. All our money that should go towards improving our infrastructure goes instead towards weapons and warplanes and preserving the troops who can’t come home.

3. I believe you were making mention of a tough question. (Spell check your stuff, please – you look a lot less intelligent when you can’t spell.) You’re right. We’re going to leave a mess behind when we pull out of Iraq. But in return I ask: How much longer should we have stayed in Vietnam? Korea? Did we win those wars?

This isn’t 1945. When we “won” that war, we lost 6 million more Allied military troops and 32 million more Allied civilians than the bad guys did. Don’t get me wrong, please. I lost a quarter of my family there (see Allied). There will be no ticker tape parade for the victors this time. Nobody wins this sort of war.

In the meantime, Osama Bin Laden is still at large, his network is growing and we’re doing nothing to make friends with the people most likely to join his cause. So, what will we leave behind in Iraq?

Let’s see:

Permanent military bases that will have to be destroyed when we go, because otherwise we will give the bad guys great places to set up shop, rather than operating out of an underground network of homes.

A failed police force without enough proper training that can’t protect its own members, let alone civilians.

A society that values its women as makers of babies, keepers of houses and property, but not as intelligent human beings with equivalent rights to men and therefore worthy of education and employment (except as suicide bombers).

Broken bridges, destroyed infrastructure and IEDs.

If you can remember far enough back to recall supply & demand, you must surely remember that we created this mess when we took on the responsibility of peacekeeper in the Iran-Iraq war.

Face it – We Americans have an awful lot to learn about playing well with our neighbors. Last I checked, this was the only Earth we’ve got and it’s gotten awful small in the last half century or so.

The US isn’t a whole lot larger than the Roman or British empires were before their downfalls. When the infrastructure of the government falls into decay, it tends to disintegrate. Would you consider the United Kingdom to be a particular threat to anyone? Rome?

Right.

Our National Guard is now our military. Check this out: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_Guard_of_the_United_States

I’ll be happy to answer more of your questions, but do me a favor first and read some of the material linked to the page above. When you’ve finished reading that and you’ve finished reading the articles of impeachment, please feel free to revisit this topic.

My family is now part of a growing statistic: military families ruined by war. The drawdown of troops began with the last Bush administration.

I have every reason not to trust another Republican with the safety and security of my home and family.

NR:
you are so biased, it blinds you…let’s take smaller steps…you are saying the energy mess was created by republican-run goverment…can you enlighten me and tell me what a democratic-led goverment under Clinton and a new democratic congress of the past 2 years did to help?
sorry about spelling, can’t check it here and you do realize by now i am not an american-born. trust me, has nothing to do with being intelliegent.

Me:
You’re absolutely right. I am biased. No question about it.

I am curious. Where are you located and why are you so anti-Obama? I read part of your public posts and at least on the face of them, you appear to be ultra-conservative. I’ve made no effort whatsoever to claim anything other than what I am – an extremely liberal, pro-choice supporter of the Democratic ticket and rights for our citizens.

Just in case you are at all hazy about what I just said, I voted for Obama in the primary, but I would have voted for Edwards first had he stayed on the ticket. Hillary never had my vote.

I don’t think Bill Clinton was perfect. I used to have a bumper sticker on my Sienna that I did not replace, which said: “No one died when Clinton lied.” While that statement was factually true in regard to his personal behavior, it was not true in regard to the continued treatment during his administration of Iraqi civilians. I will say, though, that I wasn’t worried about how I was going to pay all my bills. What I can recall, quite clearly, is the difference in my take-home pay, my ability to feed and care for my family, and the knowledge that my house was safe from foreclosure and it’s not anymore. If we have a serious medical crisis, I can’t guarantee that I won’t be in a cardboard box with my family. That’s a very scary place to be, considering where I was 8 years ago.

The Democratic congress has exercised its strength several times in the past year, overriding several Bush vetos, but the fact is that there are still not enough of them in either house to act as a unified group in opposition to the other half. After November, this will not be the case – I believe there will be a second sweep of Republicans out of both houses, at which point the majority Democrat congress will have a better chance at enacting its platform.

I can also recall, because I was old enough to pay attention, the race riots of the late 60s, the deaths of both Martin Luther King, Jr. and Bobby Kennedy, the terrible toll the Vietnam war took on this country, both financially and emotionally, and the fuel rationing that was necessary the last time we messed around with the middle east in all the wrong ways.

If the current Bush had pulled any of the stunts he did with a predominantly Democratic or independent house and senate, I feel quite confident that we would not have waited as long as this to place him, his cronies Rove and Cheney on the block.

There is no Ollie North this time to take the fall for Bush, as there was when his father was in office. Scott McClellan will most likely go to prison just like John Dean did when President Nixon was impeached if he winds up as a witness for the prosecution. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Dean)

I have to say that I am embarrassed to be counted as an American(tm) in light of our activities over the last 7 years. It saddens me to know that our rights and constitution have been taken away with little regard to the impact. I’m an idealist. I prefer to think that there ought to be a way to work things out. But the pendulum is swinging way too fast at this point. Where we’ll end up after this administration leaves office (however that happens) is anyone’s guess.

I’m not likely to move elsewhere, though I did consider Germany or England for a bit, because I don’t think anyone’s got it right. I can only hope that they’ll get it straightened out before the next generation’s generation has to deal with the consequences.

Hope that clarifies my position a bit more.

CD:
I really don’t think of Kucinich as a loon or a crazy fringe guy. I’m more of a centrist Democrat myself, but I have respect for him. He stands up for what he believes in.

Unfortunately because the media have painted him as the “weird guy who claims he saw a UFO” the Republicans are probably feeling no fear right now.

NR:
Can you explain why media are so unfair to him? Is it possible that his views are not a mainstream views in this country? Yes, I respect him also for being direct. But if you are a centrist, I can’t believe you can’t see that he is way, way to the left of center.

CD:
I can’t find your comment anymore, did you delete it because you realized that I already answered it?

As for me being centrist, this quiz result was pretty accurate. I was 83% aligned with Kucinich but there were still five candidates ahead of him.

CD:
On the one hand, I’m glad that Kucinich doesn’t care that Bush doesn’t have much time left and is just doing it on principle.

On the other hand, I wish someone had done this two years ago.

SK:
Frankly, it’s a very good move. McClellan is ready to testify, Conyers has finally stopped looking for excuses not to do something…people seem to be catching a case of conscience. Besides, it ain’t gonna hurt Kucinich with his re-election chances, and I wanna see Nancy Pelosi birth kittens.

Now’s a good time because of the upcoming election. Pres. McCain will proactively pardon Bush & Co. – forget double jeopardy, you won’t even get single. And there’s a fair to middling chance that Pres. Obama will do the same thing. “No partisan witch hunts”, clean break with the divisive politics of the past, etc. It’s the essence of Obama: when in doubt, equivocate, regardless of how moral the issue is. Remember, kids, Democrats will be Democrats.

JTN:
Heh, a little late for that. By the time impeachment proceedings began, Bush may well be out of office. I suspect that Kucinich and Co. realize this but are simply following through to make a political statement.

Hmmm… looking at the articles of impeachment I find a lot of mushy charges and exaggerated claims… particularly article 1: “…resulting in the death and maiming of over one hundred thousand Iraqis.” This number derives from a STATISTICAL STUDY which claimed over 655,000 “excess deaths” by 2006 since we invaded Iraq. That claim was also debunked some time ago and fails to show a direct link between US troop actions and those supposed deaths.

Otherwise good luck, I’ll be interested in seeing all of the tangible evidence and proof of intent on the part of George Bush for each charge. And a big cathartic impeachment hearing might put all of these claims to a rest once and for all (we can only hope)…

unless Bush ISN’T impeached or tried for war crimes or otherwise convicted, because some people seem to have endless amounts of time and energy to spend wasting their lives away on unconstructive pursuits.

Say it with me… “Duh…”

Say it with me… “Duh…”

Too disgusted by most of the news today, I leave you instead with link sausage. I’ll get back to writing again sometime this weekend, before I lose any more details on CC26. I already managed to forget which day I bought the shawl…

Take the Tums first. Trust me…

Mr. President, the war isn’t about you — or golf


(the above gacked from D – the other two surfaced all on their own today and yesterday)

Passport cards called security vulnerability


and

Bin Laden: Palestinian cause fuels terror war

Note that I have no particular love for the state of Israel and I’m not presently looking for a debate on the relative merits of the “homeland” today. If people would just let go of the “holy war” and remember that everything is holy, whether we like it or not, we’d have a lot less of everything requiring Tums.

On a separate note, is it too early to start putting out Obama/Edwards posters?

Comments:

MS:
I heard on WTOP that Edwards does not want the VP position – but would consider another on staff.
Sigh.

A new high and a new low, all at the same time…

A new high and a new low, all at the same time…

According to NPR (via Reuters) this morning:

U.S. toll in Iraq hits 4,000 as four soldiers killed

and at 7:05am:

Cost of the War in Iraq
$505,222,288,863

And the only thing worse than this is knowing that we still have another 10 months before the new administration takes over. Will the toll have reached 5,000 by then?

I pray we won’t have President McCain in office. You should, too.

[eta: The worst thing? Last night, as I was getting ready for bed, I thought about the toll that day and I realized just one roadside bomb could push us to 4k. I hate it when I’m right.]

Theme: Elation by Kaira.