I’m going to take the rare option of starting today’s snarky snippets with a humorous piece before indulging in snark-worthy detritus.
Oh, da embarrassment!!!
Brant Walker is the Mayor of Alton, Illinois, population 26,528. Like every other city, town and municipality in the U.S. right now, public gatherings are discouraged and isolation is the recommended norm. Seems the people of Alton didn’t much like the idea of staying home, though, and after the Alton police reported to Mayor Walker that people were still defying the request, the Mayor told police to crack down, to use their discretion.
The mayor even held a press briefing, where he urged the citizens of Alton …
“These are very serious times and I’m begging you to please stay at home.”
Less than 48 hours later, police broke up a gathering at Hiram’s Tavern in downtown Alton. Walker made the announcement the next day …
“At approximately 1am on Sunday morning, I was informed by the Police Chief that the Alton Police Department was investigating and stopping a social gathering in downtown Alton that was occurring in violation of the provisions of the statewide “Stay At Home” order.
I was also made aware that my wife was in attendance at this prohibited social gathering. I instructed the Police Chief to treat her as he would any citizen violating the “Stay At Home” order and to ensure that she received no special treatment.
My wife is an adult capable of making her own decisions, and in this instance she exhibited a stunning lack of judgement. She now faces the same consequences for her ill-advised decision as the other individuals who chose to violate the “Stay At Home” order during this incident.
I am embarrassed by this incident and apologize to the citizens of Alton for any embarrassment this incident may cause our City.”
Oh, the embarrassment!!! But I have to give kudos and thumbs up to Mayor Walker for insisting that his wife receive no special treatment … how many people in power do you know who would have done the same? I would have loved to be a fly on the wall when he next saw his wife, and I would have hated to be the wife!
Jair … a Donnie clone?
Donald Trump has hinted at firing Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and point man for the daily briefings on the coronavirus. Why? Likely because Dr. Fauci has corrected Trump’s misstatements on more than a few occasions, and because Dr. Fauci is a scientist, a man who deals in facts. Donnie doesn’t much like facts. He likes ‘yes-men’, and Dr. Fauci, though he tries hard to be diplomatic, is not a yes-man. Still, Trump has stopped short of firing him, likely because of strong warnings from his advisors, a few of whom, at least, were born with a brain.
Swivel to the south, to Brazil and Dictator President Jair Bolsonaro who, I have said on more than one occasion, is a Donnie-clone. Yesterday, Bolsonaro fired his very popular Health Minister, Luiz Henrique Mandetta, for much the same reason Trump has been hinting at firing Dr. Fauci … because he didn’t pander to him. Just as Donnie is more concerned with his precious economy than he is the lives of the people of the U.S., Bolsonaro was also more concerned with Profit over People. Said Bolsonaro …
“I know … life is priceless. But the economy and jobs must return to normal.”
I would like to ask both Donnie and Jair a question: How do you plan to get businesses back up and running in order to fuel your precious damn ‘economy’ if all the people who do the real work, are dead? The billionaire CEOs are useless … they do not stand for 8 hours a day putting bolts and roof liners into cars on the assembly line, they do not cook the food that is served in restaurants, and they do not serve the endless stream of customers who put their money into the economy. For that matter, Donnie and Jair … who do you think will buy the goods and services you purport to re-start if you have nary a care for the lives of We the People?
Jair Bolsonaro and Donnie Trump are two peas in a pod … neither has a smidge of foresight, neither a concern for the average person. They see the world in U.S. dollars and Brazilian reals. Not much else matters to them. Jerks.
While you were napping …
The nation and the media have had a single focus for the past month or so: the coronavirus. Meanwhile, back at the ranch … Trump and his minions have been taking advantage of the fact that nobody seems to give a shit about anything else going on in the country, and they have been busy little beavers indeed.
Yesterday, for example, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), declared that it is not “appropriate and necessary” for the government to limit mercury and other harmful pollutants from power plants, even though every utility in America has complied with standards put in place in 2011 under President Barack Obama.
Some coal executives have lobbied for the rollback, calling the Obama-era rule one of the worst examples of what Trump has labeled the “war on coal.” The rule in question, known as the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS), targets a powerful neurotoxin that can affect the IQ and motor skills of children, even in utero. Between 2006, when states began to curb mercury from coal plants, and 2016, when the Obama-era rule took full effect, emissions have declined 85 percent. And now … the EPA has said
Yet another example of the republican’s motto: Profit over People.
On a brighter note …
You may have forgotten, amidst all the detritus over the last three-plus years, but back in the day, when we had an actual President and a real First Lady, said First Lady Michelle Obama was the mover and the shaker behind the higher standards for school meal programs.
The year after Trump took office, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) reversed those standards, particularly the ones that applied to sodium and whole grains in our children’s school diet. But this week, the U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland vacated the rule, saying …
“The court concludes that the rule is not inconsistent with federal law, it does not reflect unexplained and arbitrary decision making, it does not represent an unacknowledged and unexplained change in position …”
A little thing, perhaps, but … we must take our victories wherever we can find them these days.
And on that note, I will leave you and go try to find a bit of peace somewhere, a place where I can breathe and stem the flow of the tears that seem to assail me at random times these days.