Saturday, March 14, 2020

Nemesis Strikes Trump - and We All Suffer

Hola darlings!  I hope you are all safe and secure and paying more attention to the directives of the CDC and your own doctors than anyone else.  We are living in "interesting times," as the ancient apocryphal Chinese curse stated.  

As you know, I am a lifelong student of history, particularly ancient history, and have long been enamored with and enraptured by the Great Goddess herself.  She has taken on many different forms throughout her eternal life, one of them being a particularly frightening aspect to those who are abusers of one of the Great Mother's principles of Justice (Justice, as a concept, is itself embodied as a mighty Goddess wearing a blindfold, holding scales in one hand and wielding a sword in the other to strike down the unrighteous and unjust).

From Wikipedia's entry under "Nemesis:"

In ancient Greek religion, Nemesis, also called Rhamnousia or Rhamnusua ("the goddess of Rhamnous"), is the goddess who enacts retribution against those who succumb to hubris (arrogance before the gods.)

Lo and behold, that "woman" I have long been predicting would be the one to take Trump down since his stolen election in 2016 is now making her presence known in a particularly agonizing and costly way.  (I generally try to keep politics out of Goddesschess, but I wield my sword of opinions on  numerous topics primarily political on several different websites and comment boards that have no relation to Goddesschess.  

Over the next several months as we tick down to an election in November - we will, each and every one of us, be a forced audience to just how cruel retribution toward the excessive hubris and mental instability of one man who dared to think he was above everyone, including the Great Goddess herself, can be.  Sadly, it will envelope and destroy the lives of many who do not deserve to die.  Every death from COVID-19 that occurs in the United States, I lay at the feet of Donald J. Trump himself.

This is an opinion piece published in The New York Times, by Bret Stephens, March 13, 2020:

Trump Meets Nemesis, Punisher of Hubris
A virus exposes the folly of what a President's base believes.

The word “nemesis” is too often misused. We tend to think of it as meaning a powerful, nefarious, but ultimately conquerable enemy: Vader; Voldemort; the Wicked Witch of the West. But the original Nemesis was not a villain. She was a goddess — an implacable agent of justice who gives the arrogant, insolent and wicked what they deserve.

As a matter of public health, nobody should ever suggest that the novel coronavirus represents any form of justice, divine or otherwise. It’s a virus that must be stopped.

As a matter of politics, however, it’s hard to think of a mechanism so uniquely well-suited for exposing the hubris, ignorance, prejudice, mendacity and catastrophic self-regard of the president who is supposed to lead us through this crisis.

few points to mention.

Alternative facts. In recent days, conservative pundits appear to have been scandalized by the suggestion that the coronavirus is Donald Trump’s Chernobyl. They miss the point, which is not that the virus is a nuclear furnace. It’s that the same absence of trust that pervaded the relationship between the Soviet regime and its people also pervades the relationship between much of America and its president.

A leader who cannot be believed will not be followed, even, or especially, in periods of emergency. If Trump’s supporters now wonder why Americans won’t rally around the president as they did around George W. Bush after 9/11, there’s the answer.

America First. Trump didn’t fail to insert his favorite catchphrase into his speech on Wednesday. As usual, it managed to combine jingoism with bad policy. Instead of boasting, he could have learned from South Korea how to test better. Instead of trying to talk down the threat, he could have learned from Israel’s Benjamin Netanyahu to speak about it far more honestly. Instead of offering rosy guesses of what the ultimate case fatality rate might be, he could have learned from Germany’s Angela Merkel to teach Americans some sobering math. [Note from me:  For those of you who may not have heard, Chancellor Merkel told the German people in an address to the nation to prepare for an infection rate of between 60% to 70% of the entire population.]

Putting America First — a slogan — first, means putting Americans — real ones — last.  [Note from me:  Some may not want to believe this and argue vehemently otherwise, but it was disgusting privilege that people like Representative Gaetz and Representative Meadows, as well as Senator Lindsey Graham were all able to get COVID-19 tested even though they exhibited NO symptoms of the disease, while countless average Americans, obviously sick, have been refused testing because they do not meet restricted protocols coupled with the shameful shortage of tests that DID NOT HAVE TO HAPPEN!  The severe shortage of test kits can be traced directly to decisions made by Trump, and nobody else.]

Build the wall. “The virus remains low-risk domestically because of the containment actions taken by this administration since the first of the year.” So said a White House spokesman late last month, following the president’s monomaniacal belief that there’s hardly a problem in America that can’t be fixed by building a wall, shutting a port, booting a migrant, imposing a tariff, or blaming a foreigner — right down to a “foreign virus.”

Except that containment turned out to have dwindling returns once the virus moved beyond China, squandering time and resources while creating a false sense of geographic immunity. Had the White House abandoned its ideological obsession a month ago and instead urged or mandated social distancing from the start, we’d be in a better place now.  [Note from me:  Nothing like bragging about closing the barn door after all the animals already ran out!]

Drain the swamp. The administration’s other core belief is that America is in the evil grip of the “administrative state.” But while it’s one thing to pare federal bloat and curb bureaucratic overreach, what we have now is a White House that can’t distinguish between muscle and fat, essential government and excess.

Hence the disconnect between the president’s airy promise that the coronavirus test is available to all who need it, and the sobering reality that kits are in critically low supply. Hence also the astonishing congressional testimony this week by the White House’s acting budget director that he’s sticking to his proposal to slash the budget of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as part of broader cuts to the Department of Health and Human Services.  [Note from me:  It appears the Trump regime's reasoning is something like this:  Let the old folks and the sickies DIE already.  We'll save on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.  Voila - our budget problems are fixed.  Hey - how about another tax cut for the top one percent!]

Very stable genius. Millions of Trump’s supporters aren’t blind to the president’s clownishness and ignorance. But they’ve been relatively indifferent to both, because they find the first entertaining and the second irrelevant to his overall performance. Who cares what a president knows about epidemiology, so long as the markets are up?

They care now. The coronavirus has exposed the falsehood of so many notions Trump’s base holds about the presidency: that experts are unnecessary; that hunches are a substitute for knowledge; that competence in administration is overrated; that every criticism is a hoax; and that everything that happens in Washington is B.S. Above all, it has devastated the conceit that having an epic narcissist in the White House is a riskless proposition at a time of extreme risk.

Will Trump’s declaration of a national emergency change this? 

Maybe, and the president has a belated opportunity to demonstrate seriousness he has lacked so far. But nobody should forget that such seriousness would only be a function of political expediency. Should coronavirus recede in warmer weather, you can depend on Trump to declare his premature victory — not warn that winter is coming.

It should not have had to take a deadly virus to expose this presidency for what it is. But it’s fitting that it has. A man who thinks he can twist every truth to suit his needs has at last discovered that he cannot twist the truths of nature and of one of nature’s gods. Her name remains Nemesis.

Monday, March 9, 2020

Hales Corners Chess Challenge XXXI - April 4, 2020 - CANCELLED

EDIT 3/12/2020:

I have been advised by the organizers of the HCCC XXXI that the event has been cancelled in consideration of the novel coronavirus outbreak in our country.  This step is taken out of an abundance of caution and consideration for the players and all the parents and guests who attend these events.


Hola darlings!  It's fast approaching spring 2020, and every spring the Southwest Chess Club sponsors a 4-round event (one day) where you can earn U.S. Chess Grand Prix points and hone your chess skills against some of Wisconsin's best chess players.

Goddesschess has sponsored separate prizes for female chess players awarded in addition to any prizes they may win, seemingly forever - well, at least since HCCC VIII!  A long time :)  This year we are once again sponsoring Goddesschess prizes for the chess femmes.

You can find information on HCCC XXXI at its blog in addition to the club's website, including online registration.

Goddesschess's prize structure:

Open:  $50 per win/$25 per draw 

Reserve:  $20 per win/$10 per draw 

Perfect Score Prizes for Females:  $80 in Open/$40 in Reserve

Paid entry for top female finisher in each section in the next HCCC (October 2020) should they choose to play.

April 4, 2020

Wisconsin Tour event!
US Chess Grand Prix Points: 10
4SS, G/60;d6. 2 Sections: Open & Reserve (under 1600).
EF: $50 Open, $40 Reserve, both $10 more after April 2.
Comp EF for USCF 2200+.

Online registration at Hales Corners Challenge XXXI

Registration: 8:30-9:30
Rounds: 10-1-3:30-6

$$GTDOpen: 1st-$325, 2nd-$175, A-$100, B & below-$75;
Reserve: 1st $100, 2nd $75, D-$60, E & below $50.

Crowne Plaza Milwaukee Airport
6401 S 13th Street
Milwaukee, WI 53221

Questions to Chris Wainscott (414-839-5232, after 5:30 pm)
or e-mail:

Entries To: Robin J. Grochowski
3835 E. Morris Avenue
Cudahy, WI 53110

Accelerated pairings may be used.

2020 Grand Pacific Chess Open

EDITED 3/14/2020:  Sadly, I've just been notified that the Grand Pacific Chess Open has been cancelled for this year due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.  We want everyone to stay as safe as possible.  Goddesschess will be providing a prize fund for the female chessplayers for the next Grand Pacific Chess Open, whenever it is held.  Be careful, be safe.


Hola darlings!

It's that time of the year once again.  Easter is fast approaching and every Easter Victoria, BC hosts the Grand Pacific Chess Open sponsored by my friends at Victoria Chess Club!

This year's event (the 14th) will be held April 10 - 13, 2020 at the beautiful Grand Pacific Hotel. Goddesschess sponsors a separate prize fund for female players that is awarded in addition to any other prizes a female player may qualify for, since 2010. Wow - ten years of sponsorship, how time flies.

You can find out all the information you need including registration info (online and through the snail mail), events running in conjunction with the Grand Pacific Chess Open, registration fees, deadlines, prizes, sponsors, where to stay, etc. There are several different sections.

This year the Grand Pacific Chess Open is pleased to announce that WIM Agnieszka Matras-Clement will be participating in the Open Section. Agnieszka recently won the Banff Open. She is the highest ranked Female Chess Player in Canada by a margin of 200 points. Her current rating is 2398. Agnieszka Matras-Clement is a former European and World champion (both in the U20 category).  #islandchess#goddesschess  #gpo

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