Peter Sagal ( @petersagal ) Twitter Profile

petersagal

Peter Sagal

Host of @WaitWait on @NPR. Author of "The Incomplete Book of Running," from Simon and Schuster, now available at independent bookstores or via link below.

Chicago

Joined on 2 June, 2008

http://www.simonandschuster.com/books/The-Incomplete-Book-of-Running/Peter-Sagal/9781451696240#

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Quoted @donmoyn

It is time, my friends, to celebrate America's greatest Thanksgiving tradition:
Former presidential candidate Michael Dukakis would like your turkey carcass.

Cannot and do not wish to forget this, ever.

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How it started. How it’s going

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Quoted @transmogrified

This Thanksgiving I'm thankful to the authors whose books enriched my knowledge and imagination this year. Thank you @nkjemisin @viet_t_nguyen @seanmcarroll @AstroKatie @petersagal @standupmaths 🙏

This is a wonderful list to be on, more so because I have beaten every single one of these other authors at poker, give or take a few.

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I am thankful to all the people who worked so hard, and stood up to so much pressure, and endured threats and abuse, in order to keep the faith.

Have a great holiday, and I'll be back with more fart jokes next week.

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Yes, there are people, well known and less so, who are apostates from democracy, who stand outside our Constitution and try to destroy it. There have always been such people. Until recently, we have always had the luxury of ignoring them. We will have that again.

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So I was pretty worried about the election.

And with the President's refusal to accept it and his constant attempts to overturn it, we can get too distracted from the good news: that millions and millions of people stood up for democracy and the Constitution.

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By voting in massive numbers (for either side.) For running a free and fair election. By standing up against pressure to deny the results. In the media, by telling the truth about what happened, and firmly taking a side: that of American democracy. It has reawakened my faith.

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One of the shocks of the last few years is that seeing that there is no authority over those with authority: nobody can force the President or the Senate or anyone to do anything, if they choose not to do it. There is no Deus ex Machina, no Shakespearean Duke to restore order.

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I have no idea what the tipping point might be -- what percentage of people in power abandoning Constitutional principles renders it a dead letter. But it did seem awfully close.

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Most alarming was not the President's actions, which at least have been consistent over his public career. It was how many people holding Constitutional offices who aided and abetted him. Almost every one of his appointees and senior officials. Almost every GOPer in Congress.

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I've often argued the 2nd Article of Impeachment was more important than the 1st. As troubling as the President blackmailing Ukraine was, it wasn't a blow at the Constitution. Refusing to recognize the legitimacy of Congress -- withholding the consent of the loser -- was.

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When the Democrats won the House in 2018, I was pleased there might be some oversight of the Administration. As cynical as I often profess to be, it never occurred to me that the Administration would simply... ignore the fact that the Dems controlled one house of Congress.

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Obviously, that premise has been sorely tested in the last four years, and my optimism has been shaken. To wit: as much as I may have disagreed with the Trump Admin's policies from 2017-18, nothing about them shook my faith in American democracy. They won; they govern.

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The Constitution works because the majority of people and most importantly, almost all people granted political power through its mechanisms, share a belief in the tenets of democracy. The rule of law, respecting the result of elections, "the consent of the loser," etc.

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After a long chat, with care to mark the places/times it WAS ignored (see: Jim Crow), I arrive at this answer: because what binds us together in America is not culture or national origin but a kind of civic religion of democracy.

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Here's the Soviet Constitution of 1936, for example. Note: guaranteed universal suffrage, rights to work, health care, leisure time, etc. A liberal's dream. And of course, it was instantly and immediately ignored. Why wasn't ours?

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A thread of thanks.

Ever since hosting "Constitution USA" on PBS 7 years ago I've given talks on the Constitution. The principle question I ask and then try to answer is: Why has our Con succeeded (+ or -) when so many others have failed or were instantly ignored?

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Quoted @billmckibben

So, every once in a while by pure chance, one knows something about something in the news. Today that's me--it's about a guy named Brian Deese who is up for an econ job in the Biden administration. But it's a longish story.

Retweeting this as as all curative to Twitter’s worst feature: flattening people into Heroes and Villains.

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Quoted @dansinker

In today's New York Times (!?) I wrote about birds, parenting, covid, and being stuck inside forever.

Lovely, sad, happy, perfect.

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My book, "The Incomplete Book of Running," is now out in paperback! Get it at your local indie bookstore.

Reviews:

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@NYTimes
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The
@washingtonpost
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The
@StarTribune
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