What, I wonder, would it be like to wake up one morning and find nothing to snark about in the news? What would I do? What would I write about? Who would I curse under my breath as I go about my household chores? Hmmmm … I wonder if that day will ever come … I think not likely in my lifetime.
Obstruction of transition
Remember that sigh of relief we all breathed when finally, Emily Murphy of the General Services Administration (GSA) released the funds for Joe Biden’s transition team to begin its work? Hold that thought, for it’s not going quite as it should. News today is that ‘Trump loyalists’ are interfering with the transition. What a surprise, eh?
It was only this week that the transition team was allowed into the National Security Agency, and they are still being denied access to the Agency for Global Media, parent of Voice of America. Typically, transition meetings take place between the civil service staff who currently hold the positions within the various agencies, and members of Biden’s team who will oversee or hold those positions. But this time, Trump’s hand-picked political appointees are sitting in on meetings, often directing what information can or cannot be shared.
One glaring example is the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) which, under Trump, has been severely gutted and no longer serves much useful purpose. Trump’s politicos have sat in on every single meeting between EPA staff and Biden’s transition team and have directed what could be said about such things as climate change and scientific research. Meaning, that the people who fill positions in the EPA in Biden’s administration will likely have to start from the ground up. It can be done, but it shouldn’t have to be … members of Trump’s administration and Biden’s should ALL be acting in the best interest of this nation, not of one leader or the other. This is naught but blatant obstructionism on the part of Trump and his lackeys.
The Court says “nope”
The appointment of three Supreme Court Justices by Donald Trump has been weighing heavily on my mind, and probably yours too. We like to think the Justices are fair men and women, well-versed in the law and who will vote according to the law, rather than their own prejudices, but we weren’t quite sure. Yesterday, however, the Court did the right thing … apparently unanimously.
In the shortest ruling in the history of the Court, they refused a request from Pennsylvania Republicans to overturn Joe Biden’s victory in the state:
Most rulings, even on simple things, are 20 pages or longer, so just the brevity of this one speaks volumes. Trump and his allies have lost all but one of the 50+ lawsuits they have filed attempting to still the voices of We the People. And, the one they won threw out about 600 votes, not for fraud, but only because the ballots had such minor issues as an address spelled differently than on the registration, etc. My fear had been that once a case reached the Supreme Court, with the latest addition of the highly unqualified Amy Barrett, the Court might rule against their conscience and in favour of Trump, but as there were apparently no dissenters to yesterday’s opinion, I am once again breathing a sigh of relief. The courts, our last line of defense in maintaining a government of, by, and for the people, seems to be holding … so far.
Nearing the finish line …
The last two states have finally managed to certify their elections, and the final tally is, just as we expected …
The Electoral College will meet next Monday and are predicted to vote as above. Then, the last step is for Congress to certify the electoral vote and it will be official … no more bullshit from Trump & Co. Right? At this juncture, any slate of electors certified by states must be considered valid by Congress and the courts, according to federal law. It’s a done deal. Right?
With nearly all congressional republicans continuing their wall of silence, unable or unwilling to accept the fact that Joe Biden won the election and will take the Oath of Office on January 20th, chaos is likely going to continue for the foreseeable future. In my mind, this nation no longer can be called the United States of America, for there are two distinct nations here … the “Republican Nation” and the “Everyone Else” nation. Unfortunately, there is no nice, clean geographical line of demarcation such as the Mason-Dixon line back in the 1800s, so we have to live side-by-side with those who do not seem to share our values at all. This nation is in a sad state, my friends. I don’t know if Joe and Kamala, or ANY person can bring us together.
I had never heard of ‘Slate Political Gabfest’ before today. It is a political podcast hosted by Emily Bazelon, John Dickerson, and David Plotz, where they discuss ongoing political issues. Not got your interest yet? Take a look at this clip with the three hosts and Stephen Colbert … some interesting discussion and thoughts on the subjects of Trump’s pardons and whether investigations should be opened into what has taken place ‘behind the curtain’ over the past four years.
I typically do not listen to podcasts, because there is no video and no closed captioning, meaning I’m not going to be able to hear well enough to understand what is being said, but each of the Gabfest podcasts also comes with a transcript, so those of us with hearing issues can follow along. I’d still rather see them in person, see video, but they cover some fascinating topics, and I might just start following this one.