Courage in Smithfield

I was surprised at how aggressive my candidate was toward her opponent in Monday’s debate in Smithfield.  Elane Luria won the debate easily for any honest person who saw the debate as a contest of intelligence, courage, and a record of accomplishments.  But I don’t think she would have won had it been a personality contest. In fact, it put me off at first.

Perhaps it’s difficult to keep cool when sharing the dais with someone who refuses to tell the truth for fear of losing the votes of anti-democratic enemies of our nation. Perhaps it’s infuriating to watch a fellow Navy officer betray her nation.

Jen Kiggans’s refusal to say that Joe Biden won the election that Donald Trump’s own people certified – in some cases risking their lives to do so – and called the most secure election in U.S. history is a betrayal of our nation. It’s a rallying cry for our enemies. Those enemies were in the room at Smithfield Station Monday night, cheering Kiggans’s refusal to answer a direct question. Imagine going to a forum to hear your candidate’s views, and cheering your candidate’s refusal to answer a question.

We all knew what it meant when Donald Trump refused to disavow the endorsement of KKK Grand Wizard David Duke until after days of pressure, when he finally said, “I disavow, OK?”, and we know what Trump meant when asked to condemn his racist and anti-democratic supporters but instead said, “Stand Back and Stand By”. Jen Kiggans means the same thing when she repeats slogans instead of answering, “did Joe Biden win the election?”

Elaine Luria is showing courage by digging for the truth while representing a district highly made up of people who don’t want to know the truth, and some of whom have demonstrated a willingness to use violence. Is Jen Kiggans a coward? I don’t think so. Cowards don’t generally fly military helicopters. I have to think that Kiggans is driven by ambition. That may not be cowardice, but it’s not courage either. Kiggans needs the insurrectionist, traitor vote to win. She’d rather win than stand up for the truth.

Republicans need the insurrectionist vote to win, but America won’t win that way. Politeness won’t save us. Courage will. Vote Elaine Luria

Auditorium with Kiggans and Luria seated at a table in front of the room on a raised platform.  Taken from the back of the room behind a seated audience
Luria / Kiggans forum in Smithfield

Republican Traitors have been Attacking Democracy for Decades

Heather Cox Richardson tells us (or reminds us, for the old folks) that Republican lies about voter fraud are just the latest attacks on Democracy which have been “part and parcel of Republican governance” for decades

I remember voter purges across several states well before Donald Trump’s candidacy, which knocked hundreds of thousands of people off the roles. In describing one effort to purge legitimate voters in Louisiana in 1986, Richardson quotes a National Republican Committee member boasting, “This could keep the Black vote down considerably”

Republican anti-democratic tactics include purges, closing polls in poor neighborhoods, biased ID requirements (like accepting handgun licenses but not student IDs), making it legally dangerous to register voters (see Democracy in One Book or Less by David Litt, chapter 3), and making it difficult for people who lost their right to vote to regain it.

Any law that makes it difficult to vote disproportionately affects those who face difficulties to begin with – like those who have transportation or child care challenges, who work long or unusual hours, or who have recently moved. People in those groups are more likely to be Democrats.

But when Republican efforts to prevent likely Democratic voters from casting a vote aren’t enough to keep Republicans in power, they turn to overturning election results.

Today’s election deniers are just the latest strain of vote-denying Republicans, and if they gain more power this year, elections will be less fair in years to come than they have been since before the sixties.

The first step to restoring progress in Democracy is to vote.

All That Democratic Spending

Blaming Democratic spending for global inflation is like blaming Ukrainian resistance for Russia’s invasion. Both are a factor in the ongoing crisis but neither are the cause, and both are helping their citizens get through it.

Thanks to all that Democratic spending, the United States is handling inflation pretty well compared to other nations.  For an example of how Republicans might handle inflation, we can look to Great Britain, which fell into economic turmoil after a package of tax cuts for the rich, or Turkey, experiencing 83% inflation after cutting interest rates instead of raising them.

Even if spending were the problem, electing Republicans would hardly be the solution. Before the pandemic, Donald Trump raised the national debt to a “crisis”. That’s the word the Trump administration used to describe the national debt two years after Donald Trump took office. Every Republican since Ronald Reagan increased the national debt. Reagan tripled it. It took a Democrat, Bill Clinton, to bring it down to zero, only to have it shoot up again during the great recession of the younger Bush administration.

If it’s specifically pandemic relief spending that you don’t like, remember that Donald Trump not only signed the CARES act, which was the largest fiscal stimulus in history, he insisted his own name be on the checks.  We paid to make that happen.  CARES had bi-partisan support.

There are some differences between Democratic spending and Republican spending.  Democrats tend to spend on infrastructure, making the planet more livable, and helping Americans afford food, shelter, education, and health care. Republicans generally prefer to spend on the military, corporate welfare, and prison contracts.

We should encourage our politicians to spend less, but they’re still going to spend.  Do you want to keep Democrats in office so they can spend it on relief packages and clean water or replace them with Republicans who will subsidize oil companies and build more prisons?  Help decide this November.  Vote.

Inflation is Global. Democrats are Helping Americans Get Through It

Inflation is all over the world but in the United States, inflation is lower than in Europe and several other nations, and we have better employment rates.

Republicans want you to believe that inflation is caused by the policies which softened the impact here. They’re not completely wrong and spending is a factor. But we know what is causing inflation: People getting back to work after the pandemic and Russia’s illegal war, which is affecting global energy and food supplies.

And while U.S. spending contributed to inflation, inflation is still lower in the U.S. than several other developed nations, and the benefits outweighed the cost. As noted by David Lynch writing for the Washington Post:

Indeed, in the 18 months since the rescue plan was signed into law, the economic landscape has been transformed. More than 8 million Americans who were jobless in March 2021 are now working. The economy last year posted its fastest growth since 1984 and ended the year more than 3 percent larger than before the pandemic.

What would Republicans have us do? Just last week, the United Kingdom almost destroyed their economy by doing what Republicans would: Lowering taxes for the wealthy.

You have to go back to Ronald Reagan to find a Republican president who left the economy in better shape at the end of his term than it was at the beginning, and Reagan tripled the national deficit with massive borrowing and spending.

Times are hard, but they could be worse. Republicans are having a field day with the pain that Russia and the pandemic are causing us. They hope you’re too lazy to find out how that pain is affecting the world and how the United States is handling it compared to other nations.

“Do your own research” became a catch phrase during the pandemic, but those who chanted it actually wanted you to ignore the facts. Don’t ignore the facts now. Take a look at the causes of inflation and how it’s affecting nations across the globe. You’ll find that Republicans who blame our hardship on Biden are lying, and you’ll probably support and vote for Democratic candidates like Elaine Luria, who are helping us get through it.

Elaine Luria for Congress is the Proven Congressperson for VA-02

Elaine Luria (Elaine Luria for Congress)’s astounding list of accomplishments is like a study in TLDR, So I just highlight a few:

Funding for Eastern Shore 911 and Transportation Projects…/luria-announces-funding…/

National Defense Authorization Act priorities for expanding Navy fleet and addressing childcare needs for military families…/rep-luria-announces-2023-ndaa…

Relief for Veterans Exposed to Burn-Pit Toxins…/legislation-sails-through…/

See more here:

IMHO Luria’s most admirable quality is her ability to serve on the January 6th Commission while at the same time, working across the political divide to benefit our district and our nation, having been named one of the most bipartisan members of Congress by Georgetown University

Elaine Luria is the proven congressperson who will support our veterans, strengthen our military, and grow our economy by forming coalitions, without backing down on vital issues such as ensuring women’s rights, protecting our environment, and keeping democracy safe from our enemies, domestic and abroad

Elaine Luria represents Virginia’s 2nd Congressional district, and if we’re smart will continue to do so. Find out what district you’re in at: and be sure to click on the “New in 2023” links or you’ll be looking at old districts


The Biggest Cities have Democratic Mayors – Including the Best Biggest Cities

The biggest cities in the United States are run by Democrats. Sixty-two percent are Democratic according to a page in Ballotpedia. And that doesn’t mean thirty-eight percent are Republicans. From my own research I found 64 Democrats, 25 Republicans, and the remainder unknown.

When a big city makes the news for some negative reason, it’s usually a city with a Democratic mayor. Republicans are quick to point that out, although they fail to point out that most of those cities, like Flint or Jackson, have Republican governors.

But it’s not just the biggest cities that are mostly Democratic, it’s the best

Of U.S. News and World Reports 25 Best Places to Live, at least 19 are run by Democrats. Looking at 25 best cities in Niche, I came up with 12 Democratic cities and only three Republicans (a lot of unknown’s on that list). I never heard of Afar before, but their list of best large cities was the first hit my Google search, and that list is overwhelmingly Democratic.

This might be because a city needs infrastructure and services. It’s not good enough to tell residents that they’re on their own and to enjoy the low taxes, even though Republicans rarely meet their low-tax promises as well as they meet their low services promises.

Despite all the anti-Dem commenters who are quick to disparage Democratic leadership when a big city makes the news, it seems to me that Democrats run things pretty well.

In this modern age, try to keep your phone number and don’t lose your phone

At the library where I work stuff like this happens a lot

One case:
– Patron needs help unlocking iPhone
– Tried iTunes but patron also forgot iTunes password
– Sent password reset to Gmail but patron forgot Gmail password
– Gmail sent reset to phone but…

Another case:
– Patron forgot password to bank account
– Bank sent password reset to Gmail, but patron can’t access Gmail
– Gmail sent password reset to phone
– Patron doesn’t have that phone anymore

I wish I can get the word out that your phone is often your last resort to resetting passwords. Try not to lose access to your phone and try to keep your phone number.

If you only remember one password, let it be the one for your phone. If there’s only one thing you can keep from losing, let it be your phone.

Common Sense Gun Laws Won’t Disarm Us

This is mostly a response to a discussion in the comments section of a post on Libertas and Latte.  It’s a bit long for a comment so I’m posting it here.  I’m also posting it here because I’m a narcissist and want to post something on my own blog rather than someone else’s, but the first point is still valid.

The original post is about the Indiana mall hero.

I already posted the following comment:

I think I’m with the majority of people who support some gun control measures but not any that would have disarmed Mr. Dicken.

It’s frustrating to me that I don’t see enough people pointing that out. I see people on the right distorting reality as expected by holding up this story as the only piece of data we need to prove that gun laws don’t work, and guys on the left shooting themselves in the foot by only grudgingly acknowledging Mr. Dicken’s heroism rather than holding him up an example of the kind of legally armed citizen who would not be disarmed by common sense gun control measures

So what “common sense gun control measures” do I support and how far am I from fellow gun control advocates?

Starting with what I don’t support: I don’t support severe limits on magazines and I don’t support outlawing many features that some say differentiate an assault weapon from a hunting rifle.   And I cringed with Beto O’Rourke said, “Hell Yes”

On that last point, “Hell Yes” undermined years of Democratic talking points, and I’m surprised at how many people supported him in saying so.  My friends still post memes ridiculing right wing paranoia about gun-grabbers, even after Beto endorsed their paranoia.  I still don’t think it will happen. I don’t want to grab your guns and I don’t think it would be realistic to try.

Note: Gun-grabbing now also refers to red-flag laws, many of which I do support.  Here, I’m using “gun-grabbing” to mean outlawing the ownership, not just the sale, of weapons which are currently legal.

I support background checks, concealed carry licenses, red-flag laws, and maybe some high limits on how many rounds a single weapon can hold. But those limits would have to be high.  I wouldn’t want my 22 Marlin outlawed because I can drop more than 10 bullets into the loading tube.

The gun legislation that I support, and hope others get onboard with, might not disarm most of the nutjob shooters, but they’ll stop some. And as I said, none of these would have disarmed Mr. Dicken.

Specifying the value format for a Django DateTimeInput using type=”datetime-local”, especially when using inline formsets

TL;DR: For a DateTimeInput widget where type=’datetime-local’, specify the default format to include the T in the middle of the date-time string:


This was driving me crazy!

I had a model inline formset using a form:

TicketNoteFormset = inlineformset_factory(Ticket, TicketNote, form=TicketNoteForm, extra=10)

The specified form (TicketNoteForm) had a widget specified for a DateTime field:

class TicketTicketNoteForm(forms.ModelForm):
    class Meta:
        model = TicketNote
        fields = [

My mistake was using DateInput for the field ‘when’, which was a DateTimeField, not a DateField

class TicketNote(models.Model):

    when = models.DateTimeField(
        help_text='The date that the note was submitted'

In the HTML forms, the initial value, as expected, was a date-time value but the value attribute of the field was a date value without the time

<input type="date" name="ticketnote_set-0-when" value="2022-01-22 06:52:09" id="id_ticketnote_set-0-when">
<input type="hidden" name="initial-ticketnote_set-0-when" value="2022-01-22 06:52:09" id="initial-ticketnote_set-0-id_ticketnote_set-0-when">

The difference between initial and non-initial caused a record to be created even if the form was blank

But it was still broken after I fixed it

Leaving out the widget declaration works, but then I just get a plain text field and I want to take advantage of the browser’s popup calendar

I thought I had the problem fixed by specifying the widget as


but that’s still giving me some problems. It worked fine in Firefox, but Chrome ignored the value attribute. So in Chrome

<input type="datetime-local" value="2022-01-01 08:01:00">

displays a blank datetime input and submits an empty string if not updated

I’ll update if I find a good solution.

Update: This works in Firefox and Chrome:


What Chrome was rejecting was having the value specified without the T between the date portion and the time portion. Django was producing the value without the T. By adding the format argument, I was able to make Django produce a default value that Chrome accepts.

Who gets credit for the hoax?

Is COVID-19 a hoax or is it a disease that can be cured with hydroxychloroquine?  or ivermectin?

Why wasn’t Trump treated with hydroxychloroquine when he got COVID-19?

Is it no worse than the flu or is it a deadly Chinese bio-weapon for which Dr. Fauci has the blood of millions on his hands?

If the vaccine is a hoax but Donald Trump’s Warp Speed program should get credit for it, does Donald Trump get credit for the hoax?

If the vaccine is not a hoax and Donald Trump’s Warp Speed program should get credit for it, does it matter that Pfizer, the first company to produce a vaccine, refused Warp Speed money so they wouldn’t be constrained by Warp Speed rules?

Why are both Donald Trump and Joe Biden vaccinated?  Is there anything else they agree about?