Don’t you just love it when you wake up grumpy? Good thing I wrote Saturday Surprise last night, else it wouldn’t have been written. So, how about I share my ill humour so you guys can be grumpy, too?
Personae non grata …
European Union (EU) officials have compiled a list of countries whose residents can visit the EU when it reopens its borders next week and guess what? The U.S. is not on that list. Nothing political about the decision, simply common sense. The United States has failed to get a handle on the coronavirus, new cases are surging, and the EU doesn’t welcome us because of the high risk involved. Russia and Brazil are also excluded.
Despite Mike Pence’s assurances that everything is under control, the daily new case tally keeps breaking records. Yesterday’s new case total was 47,341 … nearly 50,000! Until the past week or so, the death toll in the U.S. was over 1,000 people daily. It has dropped slightly to around 600 per day, but it is only a matter of days before it is back in the thousand range.
Foolishly, Trump demanded that businesses re-open, even against the advice of the experts, and equally foolishly, the people of this nation felt their right to go out and have fun superseded safety. This is the result … we are now banned from traveling to the EU, and if Boris Johnson & Co in the UK have any sense, we will also be banned from travel to the UK. We have already been banned from traveling to Canada. We are, essentially, stuck in this virus-infested, fool-driven nation with a clown running the show, a ship of fools controlling our well-being … or lack thereof.
And the real terrorists are …
A new study by the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) last week titled “Escalating Terrorism Problem in the United States”, determined that the problem of domestic terrorism in the U.S. is primarily from the far right. The report says “the majority of all terrorist incidents in the United States since 1994, and the total number of rightwing attacks and plots has grown significantly during the past six years”, with the far right launching two-thirds of attacks and plots in 2019, and 90% of those in 2020. Surprised? You shouldn’t be. All that talk about ‘antifa’ is just that … talk. Or perhaps an effort to distract from the real threat of white supremacy.
The report also shows the far left has been an increasingly negligible source of attacks since the mid-2000s. Those of us on the left fight our battles with our voices, not our guns.
In February, a report by the Anti-Defamation League’s Center on Extremism reported that cases of circulated propaganda by white supremacist groups in 2019 had more than doubled from the previous year, and the 2018 figures were 180% higher than 2017. About two-thirds of the total propaganda incidents in the new report were traced back to a single white supremacist group, Patriot Front, which the ADL describes as “formed by disaffected members” of the white supremacist organization Vanguard America after the Charlottesville rally in 2017.
Is it purely coincidence that these groups have expanded only since Donald Trump took office? I think not.
Justice? We’ll see …
Well finally ol’ Roger Stone is going to prison … or is he? Stone, convicted on charges of repeatedly lying to Congress and intimidating a witness to impede the House’s investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 election, was sentenced to 40 months back in February. Stone had already received one delay on reporting to prison when he was first sentenced, and last week he requested yet another delay … until September 3rd. He cites the coronavirus as his reason. However, Judge Amy Berman Jackson has had enough of the Stone/Trump show and ruled that Stone must report to the federal correction institution in Jesup, Georgia, on July 14th.
But, unfortunately for the cause of justice, Donald Trump appears to have his pardon pen fully inked and ready to go. Just this morning, he tweeted …
“IT’s TIME TO #PardonRogerStone”
So, if I had to lay odds, I’d say that Stone will, just like another corrupt Trump crony Michael Flynn, be a free man by the middle of July. Stone has been a nasty piece of work since he was a very young man and has only gotten more insidious as he grew older.
Sadly, ‘justice’ is no longer defined in the United States as it once was. Today it does not matter if you are guilty or innocent, corrupt or not … it only matters what Trump thinks of you. I never thought I’d live to see the day when the United States became a banana republic, but that day is here.
Y’know … it’s really hard to stay grumpy when there is an adorable little squirrel just outside your window eating the bird seed and every now and then looking right at you. It’s funny, but the birds don’t seem bothered by him in the least … they just go right on eating, perfectly willing to share their food, even though he doesn’t quite look the same as them. Is there a lesson for us in that?