It seems that I cannot post comments to my own posts from my laptop, at least not with this wireless connection. So if you do not get a response to a query in comments, its not that I'm being rude, I just am unable to post a reply.
The Google machine tells me that today would have been Bob Ross' 70th birthday. I recall one memorable episode where Bob stopped painting for a moment, looked at the camera, and announced "I have a squirrel in my pants." I have happy memories of happy little trees, but I doubt a show like The Joy of Painting could make it onto TV today, and that is a shame.
Partisan differences now divide Americans more sharply than distinctions of race, religion, education or sex as a decade-long wave has pushed Democrats and Republicans to opposite corners on a wide range of formerly less partisan issues. On matters as disparate as environmental protection, support for the social safety net and immigration, former areas of bipartisan agreement have dissolved as Democrats have moved left and Republicans have shifted to the right, according to a major new study by the Pew Research Center, which has tracked American values over the past 25 years.
Which would be fine, except the report doesn't reflect that conclusion. The study shows that the Republicans have moved far, far to the right, while Democrats have barely budged from their positions over the past 25 years. In other words, Democrats only appear to move " left" because the Republicans have gone completely ga-ga. But of course, in the interest of "neutrality" the fiction of "both sides do it, so what can you do?" must be maintained.