Don’t Label Me!

I would much rather live in a world where everyone has equal rights.  I would rather live in a world where free education … a good education where young people are taught to think … is affordable and available to all.  I would rather live in a world where good health care is available to all at a very small cost to those who cannot afford it, and a higher cost to those who can.  I would rather live in a world where people have been taught since birth to respect everyone and everything … humans, but also the environment, all animals, trees, flowers, grass.  I would rather live in a world where people can disagree without fighting, without screaming and yelling, without threats of violence.  I would rather live in a world where people gladly stop to help a stranger or give up something – time or money or ‘things’ – in order to help another, whether person or animal.  I would rather live in a world where it doesn’t matter if you’re black or white, straight or gay, male or female, Christian or atheist, but where everyone is treated fairly and equally.  I would rather live in a world filled with love, than hate.  I don’t mind if nobody can afford to own a mansion or a private jet, as long as everybody can afford food, shelter, medical care, education, and as long as we are cleaning up our own environmental mess.  I would rather live in a world where people don’t worship money.  I don’t care if I can never afford a brand-new car, or designer jeans, or if I can never take a vacation to Monte Carlo.

Obviously, the world I would rather live in doesn’t exist anywhere on this planet, although a few countries, Finland and Denmark most notably, have come close.

So, because I want all these things, I am told that I am part of the “woke culture” and that this is a very bad thing to be.  I had, of course, heard the term ‘woke’, and in fact it was once used by my own congressman, Warren Davidson.  I thought he meant awake, and I corrected his grammar.  However, I simply thought the term meant being aware of … whatever the topic of conversation at that moment might be.  Apparently, I was quite wrong and am not too terribly bright.

Lately, I notice a number of new terms cropping up … words that have a meaning, but are suddenly assigned a different meaning by … nameless, faceless people … and then that becomes a cultural ‘thing’.  Now, I am too damned old to try to keep up with what is meant by a “Gen X” or a “millennial”.  Those are bad enough, but now we have these terms like ‘social distancing’, ‘woke’, ‘cancel culture’, and more.  C’mon people … say what you mean.  Woke.  Yes, I awoke this morning, or rather I was awakened by the body saying it needed the bathroom.  I woke Miss Goose up because I needed her to help with the house chores.  Don’t try to pin the label ‘woke’ on me and send me scurrying to try to figure out just what the Sam Hell you even mean!

Now, from a day or so of research, trying to learn just what is meant in today’s strange culture by “woke”, the nearest I can conclude is that a ‘woke’ person is one who calls for social justice, who supports Black Lives Matter, who supports Roe v Wade and Obergefell v Hodges, who believes in equality for all and is trying to make the world a better place.  If that is the right definition, than I am proud to say that yes, I have awakened and am an enlightened social justice warrior, or in today’s vernacular, I’m ‘woke’.

So, a reader claims that being ‘woke’ is a terrible thing, much worse, even, than being a trumpeter! Hmmm … something is wrong with this.  Let’s see if we can figure out why it’s better to be a corrupt racist misogynistic psycopathic liar than a person who advocates for equality and social justice.

One explanation I found is that those who are considered to be ‘woke’ are pretentious and cultural elites.  Huh?  Okay, I know what ‘pretentious’ means, and … I can honestly say I’ve never once had cause to be pretentious a day in my life!  And … cultural elites???  Heck, folks, I’m about as elite as … Jethro Bodine from the old Beverly Hillbillies show! I don’t own fancy clothes or drive a fancy car … my van is 20 years old and has 250,000 miles on it, and is only safe to drive no farther than I could walk home. In my lifetime, I’ve been homeless, I’ve been attacked, I’ve had a gun pulled on me, I’ve worked my ass off to get an education and take care of my three children, sometimes working three jobs … ELITE???  Hell no!

So look … don’t bother to consider whether I’m “woke” or not, for it really doesn’t matter.  Consider me a person who cares very much about many things:  the environment, animals, all people, equality for all, government that works for the people, not against them.  I want people to learn to get along, to accept each other as they are, and to value diversity.  I want an end to all forms of bigotry, from racism to homophobia to anti-Semitism to misogyny to Islamophobia.  I want people to care instead of hate.  I want our elected officials to work for us, not be lining their own pockets.  I want an end to guns, the sole purpose of which is murder.  These are the things that are important to me.  Don’t label me.  I am who I am, which is far from perfect, for I am sometimes grumpy, have a fairly low tolerance for willful ignorance and stupidity, and I have a sharp edge.  But what I do, I do with kindness, caring, compassion, empathy, and love.  I am not a label, such as democrat, liberal, snowflake, woke, or any of the other labels people so frequently use.  I am me … just that.  I do my best.

Never-Ending Snarky Snippets

snarky-4I just can’t seem to tamp down the snark these days … every time I see any news, it raises the hackles and the snark just rolls out.  Today is no exception, and the three four stories below are only the tip of the iceberg.


The purpose of an executive order is not to bypass Congress, though Trump is not the first ‘president’ to use them as a tool to accomplish their goals without the muss & fuss of waiting for congressional action.  Trump has abused the power many, many times, and is planning to do so again this week.

According to White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows …

“We’re going to get them done when Congress couldn’t get them done.  The interesting thing is this president will do more in the next four weeks than Joe Biden and his team did in the last 40 years. So, you just need to stay tuned.”

Somehow, this raises red flags, especially that last sentence … it sounds rather like a threat to me.  Rumour has it that the latest batch of executive orders will involve China, immigration, and prescription drugs.

Meadows also said, in the same interview on Fox & Friends, that Trump was right when he claimed that the coronavirus is ‘mostly harmless’.  Without actually presenting any data, Meadows claimed the data shows that for 99% of people, the virus is not harmful.  Hmmm … I wonder why, then, there have been more than a half-million deaths worldwide, 133,000 here in the U.S.?

Wouldn’t it be nice if we could actually trust our ‘leaders’, if every utterance by Trump & Co didn’t send up red flags?  Sigh.toon-1


Could it be that Trump and Fox are headed for a divorce?  Trump claims he’s done with Fox and urges his base to switch to OAN.  OAN stands for One America News, however it is anything but a news network … it is a right-wing propaganda network, pure and simple.  So, what led to this breakup?

On Sunday, Fox presented the results of their latest polls, showing Trump still trailing Joe Biden.  As usual when a network says something Trump doesn’t like, it is labeled ‘fake news’ by him.  In this case, he claimed he was leading in “real polls” but did not cite any such ‘real’ polls.

“@FoxNews gladly puts up the phony suppression polls as soon as they come out. We are leading in the REAL polls because people are sick & tired of watching the Democrat run cities, in all cases, falling apart. Also, now 96% Approval Rating in the Republican Party. Another 2016!”

Um, Donnie?  You might want to double check those numbers.  You are trailing Biden in every legitimate poll, and the 96% republican approval rate you cite is way off base.  Last I heard, it was around 85%, with only 57% of republicans saying they strongly approve of the job you’re doing.  And you wonder why we don’t believe a word you say.

At any rate, the switch to OAN doesn’t trouble me overly much, for they do not have nearly the exposure nor the credibility that Fox has (not that Fox has much credibility, either).  Most people never even heard of OAN until a couple of months ago when they started replacing Fox as Trump’s new love interest.


You may remember the controversy over the Dakota Access Pipeline?  The Standing Rock Sioux Tribe have opposed the pipeline for years, saying it endangers Lake Oahe, a reservoir on tribal land that the pipeline passes under.  Today, Judge James Boasberg for the U.S. District Court District of Columbia ruled that the Dakota Access pipeline must be emptied and shut down while the Army Corps of Engineers conducts the environmental impact review that it should have completed before it granted an easement that allowed Energy Transfer Partners to build the pipeline bringing North Dakota crude oil to Illinois in the first place.  The judge gave ETP 30 days, until August 5th, to shut it down and empty it completely.  The environmental review is expected to take approximately 13 months.

And in other pipeline news, another highly controversial pipeline, the Atlantic Coast pipeline, has been canceled after numerous lawsuits by environmental groups had kept the project in limbo for nearly six years.  Duke Energy and Dominion Energy said that lawsuits had increased costs to as much as $8 billion from the $4-5 billion initially projected.  The project would have crossed the Appalachian Trail, a historic 2,190-mile hiking trail.

So, score two for the environment this week!


We are personae non grata, and rightly so.  Our failure to take the needed precautions to tamp down the coronavirus has led to a steep escalation in new cases, and last week, the EU announced it would not accept travelers from the U.S.  Canada had already closed their borders to us, and the UK is likely to follow suit.  And now … Mexico!  This is the ultimate irony, after Trump has spent nearly four years trying to ban Mexicans from coming into the U.S.  This is what I call poetic justice!toon-3The town of Sonoyta, just across the border from Lukeville, Arizona, has blocked the border from the U.S. due to growing concern about the surge of cases of the virus in Arizona. Sonoyta Mayor José Ramos Arzate issued a statement Saturday “inviting U.S. tourists not to visit Mexico,” and that people from the United States should only be allowed in “for essential activities, and for that reason, the checkpoint and inspection point a few meters from the Sonoyta-Lukeville AZ crossing will continue operating.”

Good for you, Mayor!  It was the right decision … but I’m beginning to feel a little trapped.  If the election should go wrong on November 3rd, and we all feel like leaving the country, will there be anyplace left where we would be welcomed? toon-2

♫ What’s New Pussycat? ♫

Every evening, I take a couple of hours for ‘family time’ between supper and around 10:00, when I return to working on the blog, emails, etc.  For no discernible reason, this evening during family time, this song popped into my head and took a brutal choke-hold, not willing to give me a moment’s peace.

While I love Tom Jones, and find that this song is upbeat and always brings a smile to my face, it wasn’t what I had on the docket for tonight.  But alas, since I’d like to be able to sleep once in a while without having Mr. Jones pecking away at the inner workings of my mind, I shall exorcise the tune here and now!

This was written by Burt Bacharach for Peter Sellers’ character in the movie What’s New Pussycat?  Said Bacharach …

“It was an instrumental first and then words were put on it.  I think if you’ve got a theme like ‘What’s New Pussycat?’ and that music comes from watching Peter Sellers and his craziness in that movie and you’re trying to make it that way and out words to it. Then you get Tom Jones to sing it, you get lucky. Here was a theme, which was basically an instrumental, and if it’s a good melody you’ll always fit words.”

Burt Bacharach knew he had the chops to convey the right tone in the song, and convinced Jones to do it.  According to Tom Jones …

“When I first heard it I thought, Christ! What the bloody hell do they want me to sing this for? But Burt Bacharach explained, I want the big voice to sing this bloody crazy song, and you put it on, it’s a classic.”

And so he did, and so it was.

What’s New Pussycat?
Tom Jones

What’s new pussycat ? Woah, woah
What’s new pussycat ? Woah, woah
Pussycat, pussycat
I’ve got flowers
And lots of hours
To spend with you
So go and powder your cute little pussycat nose!
Pussycat, pussycat
I love you
Yes, I do!
You and your pussycat nose!

What’s new pussycat? Woah, woah
What’s new pussycat? Woah, woah

Pussycat, pussycat
You’re so thrilling
And I’m so willing
To care for you
So go and make up your cute little pussycat face!
Pussycat, pussycat
I love you
Yes, I do!
You and your pussycat face!

What’s new pussycat? Woah, woah
What’s new pussycat? Woah, woah

Pussycat, pussycat
You’re delicious
And if my wishes
Can all come true
I’ll soon be kissing your sweet little pussycat lips!
Pussycat, pussycat
I love you
Yes, I do!
You and your pussycat lips!
You and your pussycat eyes!
You and your pussycat nose!

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: Hal David / Burt Bacharach
What’s New Pussycat? lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Jolly 🥵 Monday!

Welcome to …

Monday

Yep, it’s Monday all over again, folks!  Did you guys have a great weekend?  Mine?  Rather low-key, mediocre.  With temps in the 90s, I can’t very well get out, so I mostly worked on stuff around the house, the blog, and read a bit.  I gather it’s gonna stay that hot for the foreseeable future … very unusual for this area, for we usually only see a couple of days in the 90s, and some years we haven’t even reached 90.  I’ll be ready for fall by the time it gets here!

Joyful is out this week doing some interior decorating.  She remodeled Roger’s dark tower, added a skylight, flowers, and piped in music, and he liked it so well that she decided to take on a few more projects.  But, she’ll be back next week.  I’ve been busy in the kitchen this morning, so help yourself to a snack and let’s find some humour this Monday morning!  Oh, by the way … no bacon this morning!  A certain person who shall remain nameless, but you know who you are Larry, decided to be piggy with the bacon last week, and since I am concerned about his cholesterol, today the bacon has been replaced with … healthier treats.

jif-whips


Some people have entirely too much time on their hands.  Mohammed Muqbel, age 20, originally from Yemen but now living in Kuala Lumpur, likes to make things balance.  Muqbel started stacking eggs at the ripe old age of six!  Last month, he was awarded a Guinness World Record for his unusual accomplishment: stacking three eggs vertically.  Take a look …

The rules stipulated that the eggs had to remain stacked for at least five seconds and all three eggs had to be fresh and free from cracks in their shells.  Pretty impressive, but really … who’s got time?


A couple, whose names I do not know, were doing a wedding photo shoot on the rocky shore of Laguna Beach, California.  The couple was posing, dressed in their wedding garb … a bystander happened to be filming from well above the couple, when all of a sudden …

Hmmm … a turbulent start to the marriage I would say!  Lifeguards were able to rescue the couple, who were uninjured, but methinks that was the end of the photo shoot for that day!


Anybody have $7.5 million they don’t need at the moment?  Some people spend that much on a house, but … if you’ve got the cash, you can buy an entire town in New Zealand for that!  The town is called Mellonsfolly Ranch, and is situated within a 900-acre lot in the North Island of New Zealand.  It is on sale for $7.5 million and comes complete with 10 period themed buildings and a Manuka honey business.  Can’t beat that!

Mellonsfolly-Ranch

Mellonsfolly-Ranch-2

Mellonsfolly-Ranch-3

The tribute town was built in 2006 by cowboy enthusiast John Bedogni as an homage to an 1860s Wyoming frontier town.  It features an “authentic and licensed saloon,” a courthouse that doubles as a cinema, a sheriff’s office, and a billiards lounge, according to the listing from New Zealand Sotheby’s International Realty. There are also three homes — the main residence plus two rental houses — that accommodate up to 22 people.

Sounds like a real deal to me!  I wouldn’t mind living in New Zealand.  Only thing is … I’m a little short of the needed cash … anybody want to partner with me on this deal?


Are you guys up for some ‘toons?

toon-1toon-2toon-3toon-4toon-5toon-6toon-7toon-8toon-9toon-10toon-11toon-12


And what better way to close Jolly Monday than with a cute puppy video?


Now, go forth and have a productive and happy week, my friends!  And Hugh … this one’s for you, my friend!

jollyLove ‘n hugs from Filosofa ‘n Jolly!

If Liberty Dies in Our Hearts, no Constitution Law or Court Can Save It: A Meditation on Independence Day in the Trump Era

Our friend, Padre Steve, has done an excellent job in this, his musings about “liberty” … what it does and doesn’t mean, and how we in this nation have so often misunderstood what true liberty is. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read this, for I think it has much value in relation to the state of this nation today. Thank you, Padre

The Inglorius Padre Steve's World

Friends of Padre Steve’s World,

I have been contemplating the ideas of liberty and freedom this week. I intentionally did not watch the President’s speech at Mount Rushmore for after what he did at Lafayette Park and in front of St. John’s Church on June 2nd showed me that when he speaks of freedom, he speaks of his own, and when he speaks of liberty it is for the few, and servitude for the masses, and yes those masses include the bulk of the men and women that blindly follow him. So instead I read the official transcript today and look at images and videos as well.

Nothing I read in it surprised me. It was as scripted as Leni Reifenstahl’s Film of the Nuremberg rallies, right to Trump making a flyover in Air Force One. After a series of platitudes invoking the President’s whose images are carved on that…

View original post 2,323 more words

♫ It’s A Heartache ♫

This Bonnie Tyler song, released in 1977, was written by Ronnie Scott and Steve Wolfe, who were Tyler’s managers.

The song topped the charts in Australia, Canada, and numerous European countries, and reached no. 3 in the USA and no. 4 in the UK. It is listed among the best-selling singles of all time with sales of over six million copies.

There isn’t much trivia about the song itself, other than that it was covered by Juice Newton, Dave & Sugar, Lorrie Morgan, Gene Pitney, Rod Stewart, and Trick Pony.

What I did find interesting, though, is that Bonnie Tyler of Wales, was born Gaynor Hopkins, but when RCA offered her a recording contract in 1975, they recommended a name change.  After compiling a list from a newspaper, she settled on Bonnie Tyler.  In 1976, the year before this song came out, doctors found many nodules on Ms. Tyler’s throat due to years of singing in nightclubs.  After the nodules were removed, her voice was huskier than ever, but … it’s just the right sound.

It’s a Heartache
Bonnie Tyler

It’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
Hits you when it’s too late
Hits you when you’re down

It’s a fool’s game
Nothing but a fool’s game
Standing in the cold rain
Feeling like a clown

It’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
Love him ’til your arms break
Then he let’s you down

It ain’t right with love to share
When you find he doesn’t care for you
It ain’t wise to need someone
As much as I depended on you

Oh, it’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
Hits you when it’s too late
Hits you when you’re down

It’s a fool’s game
Nothing but a fool’s game
Standing in the cold rain
Feeling like a clown

It ain’t right with love to share
When you find he doesn’t care for you
It ain’t wise to need someone
As much as I depended on you

Oh, it’s a heartache
Nothing but a heartache
You love him ’til your arms break
Then he let’s you down

It’s a fool’s game
Standing in the cold rain
Feelin’ like a clown
It’s a heartache
Love him ’til your arms break
Then he let’s you down
It’s a fool’s game

Source: Musixmatch
Songwriters: Ronnie Scott / Victor William Batty
Si tout s’arrête (It’s a Heartache) lyrics © Universal Music – Careers, Lojo Music Ltd

On Trump’s Friday Night Speech …

On Friday night, Trump gave a speech to … well, he said to the nation, but in truth it was only designed for his base, to rile them and motivate them to return to the fold, to support him with everything they’ve got in November.  With his poll numbers sinking, the GOP and many republicans in Congress are becoming concerned, and this speech was naught more than a campaign rally intended to bring his poll numbers back up out of the tank.  A campaign rally, I might add, that cost the U.S. taxpayers millions of dollars at a time when the nation and the people are struggling financially.

We all know that Trump lies, he cheats, he threatens and bullies.  So, you might ask yourself why I asked you to read this speech last night, why I even bothered to read it myself.  Here’s the thing, though … his base will buy into every word he uttered.  Throughout the speech there were cheers and chants of “Four more years”.  Therein lies the danger.  If the election had been held last Thursday, Trump would have been slammed at the polls.  But by next Thursday, all bets are off, for this speech, filled with hate, lies, and hypocrisy, will resonate with the 40% of voters in this country who will believe anything, as long as it plays to their fears and prejudices.  That’s why I think it’s important for us to pick apart those lies … or some of them, for there are, after all, only so many hours in a day!

My comments and analysis are based on the portions of the speech I highlighted on Saturday … much of the rest was simply babbling drivel and not worth me wasting my time.  The numbers in this commentary are tied to the paragraph numbers on Saturday’s post.

#6 – The claim that the mysterious “campaign to wipe out our history, defame our heroes, erase our values, and indoctrinate our children” is a) lies, fantasy, b) divisive. Nobody is trying to ‘wipe out’ history.  For better or for worse, our history is well recorded and will never be forgotten.  But many of those he calls “heroes” were men who were trying to preserve the institution of slavery … they were not heroes and do not deserve to be memorialized by statues and monuments, symbols of their hatred.  They are holding us back from creating a more just, more inclusive, fair and understanding society.  Weak or strong, what does it matter?  Trump’s clenched fist is not indicative of strength, but rather of a bully.  He speaks of values … yet his own are based on bigotry and hatred.

#7 – I do not know who “they” are that are driving people from their jobs and demanding ‘total submission’ from any who disagree with them.  Doesn’t sound like the democrats, liberals, or anybody I know.  Hmmmm … sounds more like the madman in the Oval Office, don’t you think?

#8 – As to Trump’s claims of an attack on our ‘liberty’.  Liberty?  Whose?  He speaks of the liberty of the privileged, particularly the white privileged.  For those who struggle to make ends meet, who are stopped by police simply because of the colour of their skin, who are killed by police for being black, that liberty is far less ‘magnificent’.  The “American way of life” in Trump’s world is racist, is misogynistic, is homophobic … we need to strive for a far better ‘way of life’.  As for the “far-left fascism” that he claims … I laugh, for he also claims that antifa, an anti-fascist group, is a huge threat from the left.  So, which is it, Donnie?  Am I a fascist or an anti-fascist?  In truth, Donald Trump’s way of governing is more nearly like that of Benito Mussolini, a hard-core fascist.  The rest of his comment on the topic is mindless babbling and not worthy of response.

#9 – So far, there has been no “left-wing cultural revolution”, but maybe it’s not a half-bad idea … let’s overthrow the Trump administration … throw them and their baggage out on the street and start fresh with someone who will remove the hateful monuments and tributes to the days of slavery, who knows how government works, and who has a heart, a soul, and a brain.  Yes, let’s have a cultural revolution!  Let’s vote Joe Biden into office on November 3rd and start to heal this nation!

#11 – ‘Hundreds’, he claims, have been arrested for attempting to take down the statue of one of our founding racists?  Four … not hundreds.  Four people were arrested in connection with damage to the statue of Andrew Jackson.  Ten years in prison?  I think not.  I wonder if he’s ever heard of the punishment matching the crime.  Ten years for perhaps writing ‘Black Lives Matter’ on a piece of granite is not going to get anyone a ten-year sentence.  More likely just a fine.  More threats and bullying … against We the People … the ones who pay his salary, the ones who fund all his golf trips and trips to Mar-a-Lago, the ones to whom he swore an oath.  Think about that one for a few minutes.  We are his sworn enemies, but we keep paying those taxes to ensure his lavish lifestyle.  Democratic Republic … or dictatorship?

#12 – Trump has his biases all mixed up.  Education in primary and secondary schools often whitewashes the history of this nation, glorifies the inglorious, and defines racists in a heroic light.  The founders of this nation did much that was good, but they were racists and misogynists and that needs to be taught as well.  They said, “All men are created equal”, by which they meant white men.  Not women, not blacks … white men.  Women and blacks have fought long and hard for our right to be treated as equals, and neither group is there yet.  Call a spade a spade … teach truth, not whitewashed, glorified fantasy.

#18 – So, to be clear, this radical ideology that would ‘demolish both justice and society’ … treating all people equally, ending racism, taking care of those who cannot take care of themselves, ensuring that every person has access to affordable healthcare, and ensuring that everyone, regardless of colour or gender, is able to earn a fair wage, narrowing the income gap … those things would demolish justice and society?  No, what is destroying justice and our society is having police killing unarmed black men just because they can.  It is having a government riddled with corruption that we are powerless to stop.  It is spending money to prop up the dying fossil fuel industry while we continue destroying our planet.  It is having a ‘leader’ in name only, yet one who proclaims he is ‘above the law’ in all things.  That, my friends, is tyranny.

#20 – When he says, “We embrace tolerance, not prejudice,” I want to scream.  Such hypocrisy is reminiscent of a third-world dictator speaking to an uneducated public.  But then, Trump is speaking only to his base, so … same thing.  This speech oozes racism, as have most of Trump’s actions over the past month (and before).  Trump is a racist, pure and simple, and his followers at this point are too, else they would not still be his followers.  When he speaks of “love of country”, I am sickened.  He has no love for any but himself.  The goal of the liberal thinkers in this country is not to end “America”, but to make the United States a country to be proud of, a country that takes care of the planet, of people, and helps others around the world.  Right now, I have zero pride in this country.

#22 – Trump calls those of us who disagree with him “bad, evil people”.  I may not be the best person in the world, but I am neither bad nor evil.  I only want everyone treated fairly and Donald Trump & his cohorts are fighting against that, as are those who continue to support him.

His masses will eat this speech up, and I believe that by the end of next week, his polling numbers will be on the rise … for no other reason than this lying, racist, phobic, fear-mongering, and divisive speech.  Oh, and by the way, with daily new cases over 50,000 per day now, it should be noted that Trump never once mentioned the pandemic.  Not once.  You can see what he thinks our lives are worth, yes?

Trump’s Tribute To Hatred & Divisiveness

What follows is a transcript of the 45-minute speech that Donald Trump gave yesterday evening at a very expensive ceremony at Mount Rushmore.  It is long, some 3,671 words, but I hope you will take the time to at least read the highlighted portions.  My commentary will follow later today, or more likely tomorrow. I have numbered the paragraphs for easy reference.


#1 – Well, thank you very much. Governor Noem, Secretary Bernhardt, we very much appreciate it. Members of Congress, distinguished guests, and a very special hello to South Dakota. As we begin this 4th of July weekend, the First Lady and I would wish each and every one of you a very, very happy Independence Day. Thank you.

#2 – Let us show our appreciation to the South Dakota Army and Air National Guard and the Air Force for inspiring us with that magnificent display of American air power, and of course our gratitude as always to the legendary and very talented Blue Angels. Thank you very much. Let us also send you our deepest thanks to our wonderful veterans, law enforcement, first responders, and the doctors, nurses, and scientists working tirelessly to kill the virus. They are working hard. I want to thank them very, very much. We’re grateful as well to your state’s congressional delegation. Senator John Thune. John, thank you very much. Senator Mike Rounds. Thank you, Mike. And Dusty Johnson, Congressman. Hi, Dusty. Thank you. And all others with us tonight from Congress, thank you very much for coming. We appreciate it.

#3 – There could be no better place to celebrate America’s independence than beneath this magnificent, incredible majestic mountain and monument to the greatest Americans who have ever lived. Today we pay tribute to the exceptional lives and extraordinary legacies of George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, and Teddy Roosevelt. I am here as your president to proclaim before the country and before the world, this monument will never be desecrated, these heroes will never be defamed, their legacy will never ever be destroyed, their achievements will never be forgotten, and Mount Rushmore will stand forever as an eternal tribute to our forefathers and to our freedom.

#4 – We gather tonight to herald the most important day in the history of nations, July 4th, 1776. At those words, every American heart should swell with pride, every American family should cheer with delight, and every American patriot should be filled with joy because each of you lives in the most magnificent country in the history of the world and it will soon be greater than ever before.

#5 – Our founders launched not only a revolution in government, but a revolution in the pursuit of justice, equality, liberty, and prosperity. No nation has done more to advance the human condition than the United States of America and no people have done more to promote human progress than the citizens of our great nation. It was all made possible by the courage of 56 patriots who gathered in Philadelphia 244 years ago and signed the Declaration of Independence. They enshrined a divine truth that changed the world forever when they said, “All men are created equal.” These immortal words set in motion the unstoppable march of freedom. Our founders boldly declared that we are all endowed with the same divine rights, given us by our Creator in Heaven, and that which God has given us, we will allow no one ever to take away ever.

#6 – 1776 represented the culmination of thousands of years of Western civilization and the triumph of not only spirit, but of wisdom, philosophy, and reason. And yet, as we meet here tonight, there is a growing danger that threatens every blessing our ancestors fought so hard for, struggled, they bled to secure. Our nation is witnessing a merciless campaign to wipe out our history, defame our heroes, erase our values, and indoctrinate our children. Angry mobs are trying to tear down statues of our founders, deface our most sacred memorials, and unleash a wave of violent crime in our cities. Many of these people have no idea why they’re doing this, but some know what they are doing. They think the American people are weak and soft and submissive, but no, the American people are strong and proud and they will not allow our country and all of its values, history, and culture to be taken from them.

#7 – One of their political weapons is cancel culture, driving people from their jobs, shaming dissenters, and demanding total submission from anyone who disagrees. This is the very definition of totalitarianism, and it is completely alien to our culture and to our values and it has absolutely no place in the United States of America.

#8 – This attack on our liberty, our magnificent liberty must be stopped, and it will be stopped very quickly. We will expose this dangerous movement, protect our nation’s children from this radical assault, and preserve our beloved American way of life. In our schools, our newsrooms, even our corporate boardrooms, there is a new far-left fascism that demands absolute allegiance. If you do not speak its language, perform its rituals, recite its mantras, and follow its commandments, then you will be censored, banished, blacklisted, persecuted, and punished. It’s not going to happen to us.

#9 – Make no mistake. This left-wing cultural revolution is designed to overthrow the American Revolution. In so doing they would destroy the very civilization that rescued billions from poverty, disease, violence, and hunger, and that lifted humanity to new heights of achievement, discovery, and progress. To make this possible, they are determined to tear down every statue, symbol, and memory of our national heritage.

– Memory of our national heritage.

#10 – True. That’s very true actually. That is why I am deploying federal law enforcement to protect our monuments, arrest the rioters, and prosecutors offenders to the fullest extent of the law.

Thank you.

#11 – I am pleased to report that yesterday, federal agents arrested the suspected ringleader of the attack on the statue of the great Andrew Jackson in Washington, D.C., and in addition, hundreds more have been arrested. Under the executive order I signed last week pertaining to the Veterans Memorial Preservation Memorial and Recognition Act and other laws, people who damage or deface federal statues or monuments will get a minimum of 10 years in prison and obviously that includes our beautiful Mount Rushmore.

#12 – Our people have a great memory. They will never forget the destruction of statues and monuments to George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, Ulysses S. Grant, abolitionists and many others. The violent mayhem we have seen in the streets and cities that are run by liberal Democrats in every case is the predictable result of years of extreme indoctrination and bias in education, journalism, and other cultural institutions. Against every law of society and nature, our children are taught in school to hate their own country and to believe that the men and women who built it were not heroes but that were villains. The radical view of American history is a web of lies, all perspective is removed, every virtue is obscured, every motive is twisted, every fact is distorted and every flaw is magnified until the history is purged and the record is disfigured beyond all recognition. This movement is openly attacking the legacies of every person on Mount Rushmore. They defiled the memory of Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln and Roosevelt. Today we will set history and history’s record straight.

#13 – Before these figures were immortalized in stone, they were American giants in full flesh and blood, gallant men, whose intrepid deeds unleashed the greatest leap of human advancement the world has ever known. Tonight I will tell you and most importantly the youth of our nation the true stories of these great, great men. From head to toe George Washington represented the strength, grace, and dignity of the American people. From a small volunteer force of citizen farmers, he created the Continental Army out of nothing and rallied them to stand against the most powerful military on earth. Through eight long years, through the brutal winter at Valley Forge, through setback after setback on the field of battle, he led those patriots to ultimate triumph. When the army had dwindled to a few thousand men at Christmas of 1776, when defeat seemed absolutely certain, he took what remained of his forces on a daring nighttime crossing of the Delaware River. They marched through nine miles of frigid darkness, many without boots on their feet, leaving a trail of blood in the snow. In the morning, they seized victory at Trenton after forcing the surrender of the most powerful empire on the planet at Yorktown, General Washington did not claim power but simply returned to Mount Vernon as a private citizen.

#14 – When called upon again, he presided over the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia and was unanimously elected our first president. When he stepped down after two terms, his former adversary, King George called him the greatest man of the age. He remains first in our hearts to this day, for as long as Americans love this land, we will honor and cherish the father of our country, George Washington. He will never be removed, abolished, and most of all, he will never be forgotten. Thomas Jefferson, the great Thomas Jefferson, was 33 years old when he traveled north to Pennsylvania and brilliantly authored one of the greatest treasures of human history, the Declaration of Independence. He also drafted Virginia’s constitution and conceived and wrote the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom, a model for our cherished First Amendment. After serving as the first Secretary of State, and then Vice President, he was elected to the presidency. He ordered American warriors to crush Barbary pirates. He doubled the size of our nation with the Louisiana Purchase and he sent the famous explorers Lewis and Clark into the west on a daring expedition to the Pacific Ocean. He was an architect, an inventor, a diplomat, a scholar, the founder of one of the world’s great universities and an ardent defender of liberty. Americans will forever admire the author of American freedom, Thomas Jefferson, and he too will never, ever be abandoned by us.

#15 – Abraham Lincoln, the savior of our union, was a self-taught country lawyer who grew up in a log cabin on the American frontier. The first Republican president, he rose to high office from obscurity based on a force and clarity of his anti-slavery convictions. Very, very strong convictions. He signed the law that built the Trans-Continental Railroad. He signed the Homestead Act given to some incredible scholars as simply defined ordinary citizens free land to settle anywhere in the American West, and he led the country through the darkest hours of American history, giving every ounce of strength that he had to ensure that government of the people, by the people and for the people did not perish from this earth. He served as commander in chief of the U.S. Armed Forces during our bloodiest war, the struggle that saved our union and extinguished the evil of slavery. Over 600,000 died in that war, more than 20, 000 were killed or wounded in a single day in Antietam. At Gettysburg 157 years ago, the Union bravely withstood an assault of nearly 15,000 men and threw back Pickett’s Charge. Lincoln won the Civil War. He issued the Emancipation Proclamation. He led the passage of the 13th Amendment, abolishing slavery for all-time and ultimately his determination to preserve our nation and our union cost him his life. For as long as we live, Americans will uphold and revere the immortal memory of President Abraham Lincoln.

#16 – Theodore Roosevelt exemplified the unbridled confidence of our national culture and identity. He saw the towering grandeur of America’s mission in the world and he pursued it with – in the world and he pursued it with overwhelming energy and zeal. As a Lieutenant Colonel during the Spanish-American War, he led the famous Rough Riders to defeat the enemy at San Juan Hill. He cleaned up corruption as police commissioner of New York City, then served as the Governor of New York, Vice President, and at 42 years old, became the youngest ever President of the United States.

#17 – He sent our great new naval fleet around the globe to announce America’s arrival as a world power. He gave us many of our national parks, including the Grand Canyon. He oversaw the construction of the awe-inspiring Panama Canal and he is the only person ever awarded both the Nobel Peace Prize and the Congressional Medal of Honor. He was American freedom personified in full. The American people will never relinquish the bold, beautiful and untamed spirit of Theodore Roosevelt.

#18 – No movement that seeks to dismantle these treasured American legacies can possibly have a love of America at its heart. Can’t happen. No person who remains quiet at the destruction of this resplendent heritage can possibly lead us to a better future. The radical ideology attacking our country advances under the banner of social justice, but in truth, it would demolish both justice and society. It would transform justice into an instrument of division and vengeance and it would turn our free and inclusive society into a place of a repression, domination, and exclusion. They want to silence us, but we will not be silenced.

Thank you. Thank you very much. Thank you very much.

#19 – We will state the truth in full without apology. We declare that the United States of America is the most just and exceptional nation ever to exist on earth. We are proud of the fact that our country was founded on Judeo-Christian principles and we understand that these values have dramatically advanced the cause of peace and justice throughout the world. We know that the American family is the bedrock of American life. We recognize the solemn right and moral duty of every nation to secure its borders and we are building the wall. We remember that governments exist to protect the safety and happiness of their own people. A nation must care for its own citizens first. We must take care of America first. It’s time. We believe in equal opportunity, equal justice, and equal treatment for citizens of every race, background, religion and creed. Every child of every color, born and unborn, is made in the holy image of God.

#20 – We want free and open debate, not speech codes and cancel culture. We embrace tolerance, not prejudice. We support the courageous men and women of law enforcement. We will never abolish our police or our great Second Amendment which gives us the right to keep and bear arms. We believe that our children should be taught to love their country, honor their history, and respect our great American flag. We stand tall, we stand proud, and we only kneel to Almighty God. This is who we are. This is what we believe and these are the values that will guide us as we strive to build an even better and greater future. Those who seek to erase our heritage want Americans to forget our pride and our great dignity so that we can no longer understand ourselves or America’s destiny. In toppling the heroes of 1776, they seek to dissolve the bonds of love and loyalty that we feel for our country and that we feel for each other. Their goal is not a better America, their goal is to end America.

#21 – In its place, they want power for themselves, but just as patriots did in centuries past, the American people will stand in their way and we will win and win quickly and with great dignity. We will never let them rip America’s heroes from our monuments or from our hearts. By tearing down Washington and Jefferson, these radicals would tear down the very heritage for which men gave their lives to win the Civil War, they would erase the memory that inspired those soldiers to go to their deaths, singing these words of the Battle Hymn of the Republic, “As he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free, while God is marching on.” They would tear down the principles that propelled the abolition of slavery and ultimately around the world ending an evil institution that had plagued humanity for thousands and thousands of years. Our opponents would tear apart the very documents that Martin Luther King used to express his dream and the ideas that were the foundation of the righteous movement for Civil Rights. They would tear down the beliefs, culture and identity, that have made America the most vibrant and tolerant society in the history of the earth. My fellow Americans, it is time to speak up loudly and strongly and powerfully and defend the integrity of our country.

#22 – It is time for our politicians to summon the bravery and determination of our American ancestors. It is time. It is time to plant our flag and to protect the greatest of this nation for citizens of every race in every city in every part of this glorious land. For the sake of our honor, for the sake of our children, for the sake of our union, we must protect and preserve our history, our heritage, and our great heroes. Here tonight before the eyes of our forefathers, Americans declare again, as we did 244 years ago, that we will not be tyrannized, we will not be demeaned, and we will not be intimidated by bad, evil people. It will not happen.

#23 – We will proclaim the ideals of the Declaration of Independence and we will never surrender the spirit and the courage and the cause of July 4, 1776. Upon this ground, we will stand firm and unwavering. In the face of lies meant to divide us, demoralize us and diminish us, we will show that the story of America unites us and –

#24 – We will show that the story of America unites us, inspires us, includes us all, and makes everyone free. We must demand that our children are taught once again to see America as did Reverend Martin Luther King when he said that the founders had signed a promissory note to every future generation. Dr. King saw that the mission of justice required us to fully embrace our founding ideals. Those ideals are so important to us, the founding ideals.

#25 – He called on his fellow citizens not to rip down their heritage, but to live up to their heritage. Above all, our children from every community must be taught that to be American is to inherit the spirit of the most adventurous and confident people ever to walk the face of the Earth. Americans are the people who pursued our Manifest Destiny across the ocean, into the uncharted wilderness, over the tallest mountains, and then into the skies, and even into the stars.

#26 – We are the country of Andrew Jackson, Ulysses S. Grant, and Frederick Douglas. We are the land of Wild Bill Hickock and Buffalo Bill Cody. We are the nation that gave rise to the Wright brothers, the Tuskegee airmen, Harriet Tubman, Clara Barton, Jesse Owens, George Patton, General George Patton, the great Louis Armstrong, Alan Shepard, Elvis Presley, and Muhammad Ali, and only America could have produced them all. No other place.

#27 – We are the culture that put up the Hoover Dam, laid down the highways, and sculpted the skyline of Manhattan. We are the people who dreamed the spectacular dream, it was called Las Vegas in the Nevada desert, who built up Miami from the Florida marsh, and who carved our heroes into the face of Mount Rushmore. Americans harnessed electricity, split the atom, and gave the world the telephone and the internet. We settled the Wild West, won two World Wars, landed American astronauts on the moon.

#28 – And one day very soon, we will plant our flag on Mars. We gave the world the poetry of Walt Whitman, the stories of Mark Twain, the songs of Irving Berlin, the voice of Ella Fitzgerald, the style of Frank Sinatra, the comedy of Bob Hope, the power of the Saturn V rocket, the toughness of the Ford F150, and the awesome might of the American aircraft carriers.

#29 – Americans must never lose sight of this miraculous story. We should never lose sight of it. Nobody has ever done it like we have done it. So today, under the authority vested in me as President of the United States, I am announcing the creation of a new monument to the giants of our past. I am signing an executive order to establish the National Guard of American heroes, a vast outdoor park that will feature the statues of the greatest Americans to ever live.

#30 – From this night, and from this magnificent place, let us go forward united in our purpose and rededicated in our resolve. We will raise the next generation of American patriots. We will write the next thrilling chapter of the American adventure. And we will teach our children to know that they live in a land of legends, that nothing can stop them, and that no one can hold them down. They will know that, in America, you can do anything, you can be anything, and together, we can achieve anything.

#31 – Uplifted by the titans of Mount Rushmore, we will find unity that no one expected. We will make strides that no one thought possible. This country will be everything that our citizens have hoped for for so many years, and that our enemies fear, because we will never forget that the American freedom exists for American greatness. And that’s what we have, American greatness. Centuries from now, our legacy will be the cities we built, the champions we forged, the good that we did, and the monuments we created to inspire us all. My fellow citizens, America’s destiny is in our sights. America’s heroes are embedded in our hearts. America’s future is in our hands. And ladies and gentlemen, the best is yet to come. This has been a great honor for the First Lady and myself to be with you. I love your state. I love this country. I’d like to wish everybody a very happy Fourth of July to all. God bless you. God bless your families. God bless our great military, and God bless America. Thank you very much. Thank you.

♫ 96 Tears ♫

Tonight, I made the mistake of reading the transcript of Trump’s speech at Mount Rushmore, a speech filled with hatred and divisive remarks, a speech designed to inflame and further divide this nation.  The speech made me ill and brought at least 96 tears, hence this song tonight.

The song, released in 1966 by a little-known garage band calling themselves ? and the Mysterians, a band comprised mostly of immigrants from Mexico.  This song was written by “?,” the band’s frontman who wanted to be anonymous (he’s listed on the composer credits as Rudy Martinez). At one point he referred to the individual band members only by three-letter names (at one point, the band was known as XYZ). The mystery helped market the group, who wore dark glasses to add to the intrigue.

I don’t recall any other song by this group, but this one hit #1 in both the U.S. and Canada, and #37 in the UK.  It is ranked #213 on the Rolling Stone list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.

The singer is not the one crying the 96 Tears. He’s been dumped, and plans to get revenge by reuniting so he can dump her back. That’s when she’ll be crying the 96 tears.  When the group came up with this song, ? didn’t want to use a title with a number in it because he thought they would be accused of ripping off The Rolling Stones, who had a hit with 19th Nervous Breakdown. His bandmates convinced him to go with it.

The record was taped in a converted living room in Bay City, Michigan. The band then had the Texas-based Pa-Go-Go Records press 500 copies so they could distribute them to the DJ’s in southern Michigan. The song became the most requested record on WTAC Flint, and CKLW out of Windsor, Canada, which went into Detroit. Cameo Records, having solvency problems, picked up the record after one of its staffers heard it on CKLW.

According to ? …

“Little Frank [keyboard player Frank Rodriguez] comes in singing a tune, and I said, ‘I’ve heard that before. And I ain’t going to do nothing until I’ve heard where that music and the title of it comes from.’ He played it for like 45 minutes. Everybody’s getting mad. And then all of a sudden it dawned on me, I said, ‘Oh, I know where I heard that. I wrote that song long time ago.’  Then the lyrics came out: ‘Too many teardrops for one heart to be crying,’ all that came out just like that. Boom. See, it was meant to be. There are certain things that are meant to be.”

The group disbanded in 1968, but have reunited from time to time since.

96 Tears
? and the Mysterians

Too many teardrops for one heart to be crying
Too many teardrops for one heart to carry on

You’re way on top now since you left me
You’re always laughing way down at me
But watch out now, I’m gonna get there
We’ll be together for just a little while
And then I’m gonna put you way down here
And you’ll start crying ninety-six tears
Cry, cry

And when the sun comes up, I’ll be on top
You’ll be right down there, looking up
And I might wave, come up here
But I don’t see you waving now
I’m way down here, wondering how
I’m gonna get you but I know now
I’ll just cry, cry, I’ll just cry

Too many teardrops for one heart to be crying
Too many teardrops for one heart to carry on

You’re gonna cry ninety-six tears
You’re gonna cry ninety-six tears
You’re gonna cry, cry, cry, cry now
You’re gonna cry, cry, cry, cry
Ninety-six tears

Come on and let me hear you cry, now
Ninety-six tears, woo
I wanna hear you cry
Night and day, yeah, all night long

Uh, ninety-six tears, cry, cry, cry
Come on, baby, let me hear you cry now, all night long
Uh, ninety-six tears, yeah, come on now
Uh, ninety-six tears

Source: LyricFind
Songwriters: R Martinez
96 Tears lyrics © Abkco Music, Inc