Voting Rights — Going … Going … ???

Most states are passing laws that restrict voting rights, especially those of Blacks, Hispanics, the poor, the elderly and the young, and some of those laws are positively draconian!  For example, our friend Suze reports that …

“My own state has a bill under discussion that would make it a felony to provide transport to a voting site to anyone “not within their immediate family.”

So, if your neighbor’s car is in the shop being repaired, and the nearest polling place is ten miles away, you are forbidden to take them to vote???  I think not!  If such a law were passed here, I would double down on my determination to drive my friends and neighbors to the polling station and dare anybody to cross me!  Toss me in jail if you will … I won’t back down!  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr …

Just this morning, Suze informed me that the bill failed in the State Senate … by one vote … ONE LOUSY VOTE!

And then there’s this little tidbit …

Election officials in rural Georgia county to vote on whether to close 6 of county’s 7 polling places

They would close fully 86% of the polling places, meaning every person would have to travel further and wait longer in line just to cast their vote.  WHAT THE SAM HELL is wrong with these damn fools???  Said one resident of Georgia’s Lincoln County …

“I don’t like it at all, because we are such a long county.  Now seven may be too much, but one is definitely not acceptable for especially the elderly coming all the way into town to do that.”

Thanks to many states expanding the options for early voting and postal voting due to the pandemic in 2020, we saw the highest voter turnout numbers in more than a century.  If the states are allowed to continue with their pattern of obstruction without overriding federal legislation or action from the courts, we may well see the lowest voter turnout in the history of the nation this year.

Meanwhile, the Senate Minority Leader, Kentuckian Mitch McConnell, yesterday made this statement:

“African-American voters are voting in just as high a percentage as Americans.”

Yep, you read it right … he actually said that.  Obviously, Mr. McConnell doesn’t see Black people as Americans at all, but rather sees them as “other” and doesn’t believe it is his job to give them equal representation!  It is interesting to note that in the current Congress, there are 56 Black Democrats and only two Black Republicans … this in itself should tell you something about the Republican Party and its racist ideology.

And yet, in the face of all these attempts to keep We the People from exercising our right to vote, to have a voice in our government, some 52 members of the United States Senate have refused to enact two bills, the Freedom to Vote Act and the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act.  WHY???  Because the more people who are able to vote, the less likely Republicans are to win at the polls.  Yes, it’s that simple, folks.  The majority of people 18 years of age and older in this country lean more toward voting for Democrats whose ideology is to put the people … ALL of the people … first, as opposed to the Republicans who pander only to the wealthy and large corporations.  Things like education, the environment, minimum wage laws, and more simply do not matter to today’s Republican Party.

Still, We the People continue working hard to pay our taxes to support these men and women who laugh all the way to the bank as they pat themselves on the back for screwing us over.  The situation is untenable and sooner or later the people of this country will tire of being walked on by those whose salaries we pay.

There are many things that need to be addressed by our federal government but there are two that are critical to our survival:  the environment and voting rights.  Both of these issues are being ignored or opposed by the Republicans in Congress.  Please, my friends, let them know how you feel with a phone call or a letter and above all else, let’s vote the slackers out of office and elect men and women who care enough about our future to do the right thing.

Give Credit Where Credit Is Due!

President Biden is doing the best he can, folks, given what he has to work with!  No one man can solve all the nation’s problems … he needs the help of others, but the only thing President Biden is getting from others is obstruction and criticism.  Thus far, I think he’s done a pretty damn good job, considering that not one single Republican in Congress has found their conscience in the pile of dirty laundry they left lying about the floor of the Capitol.  But it’s not only the Republicans … even members of Biden’s own party are wringing their hands and saying he “should do this …” or “shouldn’t have said that …” instead of supporting his efforts.

I don’t know about you, but I am sick and damn tired of the media focusing on what President Biden didn’t accomplish, calling his first year in office a ‘dismal failure’, and blaming him for everything from the price of sugar to the high rate of Covid cases/deaths.  The reality is that he has accomplished a lot and would have accomplished much more, had it not been for the obstruction of the Republicans in Congress.  The media … ALL of it … needs to stop and think, needs to be more honest and give credit where credit is due!  Bill Press is an author, journalist, and radio talk show host who I’ve highlighted here a few times before.  His latest column is spot on regarding the painting of President Biden with a very dark media brush …


Bill Press: Biden lays blame where it belongs

BILL PRESS JANUARY 20, 2022

One year ago, Joe Biden took the oath of office as the 46th president of the United States. So, it’s only fair to ask the question, on Jan. 20, 2022: “How’d that first year work out?” And, indeed, that was the entire focus of Biden’s news conference on January 19.

President Joe Biden speaks during a press conference in the East Room of the White House on Wednesday, Jan. 19, 2022 in Washington, D.C.

Take your partisan hat off for the moment. Whether you like his politics or not, you have to agree that Biden proved once and for all – despite relentless smears by Donald Trump – that he’s more than up for the job. He not only gave the longest news conference in presidential history, but he also proved knowledgeable and up to date on the widest possible range of topics: from Ukraine to Yemen, from COVID-19 to voting rights, from inflation to the supply chain.

You probably also agree that the big show dragged on far too long and, at times, Biden talked too much, especially when he mused about how the West might respond differently to a “minor” invasion of Ukraine by Russia vs. a “major invasion.” When, in fact, the only correct answer is that “any” invasion of Ukraine by Russia is unacceptable and will be dealt with severely.

Not surprisingly, Biden walked into the East Room facing a skeptical, if not hostile, group of reporters. With few exceptions, in the days leading up to Biden’s press conference, news outlets had basically already written off his first year as a total disaster. You heard it over and over again: Biden promised to do big things, he promised to deliver on voting rights, he promised to work with Republicans and restore national unity – and he’d failed at all three.

Yet, by the time the news conference ended, in his own plain-spoken, and sometimes plodding style, it was Biden who’d proven the media wrong about all three.

Getting big things done. Did Biden achieve everything he set out to do? Heck, no. What president ever has? In four years, let alone one? But, as Biden was quick to point out, he could, and did, brag about “enormous progress” on several fronts: record economic growth; 6 million new jobs created; unemployment down to 3.9 percent; new business applications up 39 percent; record investment in rebuilding America’s ports, bridges, and highways; from 2 million to 210 million Americans fully vaccinated against COVID-19, and from zero to 1 billion home test kits available. Yes, Biden admitted, he faced “a job not yet finished,” but he’d still accomplished a great deal in his first 12 months. And he wisely said he’s willing to break up his “Build Back Better” bill into smaller pieces to add that to his list of accomplishments. Score One.

Voting rights. Biden admitted that failure to pass voting rights legislation is the biggest disappointment of his first year, but you can’t blame him for not trying. He endorsed both bills, lobbied senators for their passage, and even supported ending the filibuster to make it happen. But there are limits to what a president can do. Blame Senate Republicans, 16 of whom, including leaders McConnell, Grassley, and Cornyn – previously voted for the Voting Rights Act, but refused to do so again for fear of alienating Donald Trump. And blame especially two stubborn, blockheaded Democrats, Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema. Score Two.

Unity. The reality is, it takes two to tango. And, in the past, Biden’s always found Republican tango partners. No longer. “Did you ever think,” he asked, “that one man out of office could intimidate an entire party?” Biden acknowledged that times have changed: “I did not anticipate that there would be such a stalwart effort to make sure that the most important thing was that President Biden didn’t get anything done.” National unity is impossible when one political party always says no. Score Three.

On this point, Biden was at his best. All-out Republican opposition, he noted, raises the question: “What are you for?” The truth is, we know what Republicans are for. For eight years, they were for nothing but stopping President Obama. For four years, they were for nothing but whatever Donald Trump wanted (which turned out to be nothing). Now they’re for nothing but stopping President Biden. For 13 years, they have not put up one new idea. They stand for nothing. They’re the party of nothing.

Perhaps unwittingly, Biden has given Democrats a strong argument to take into the midterms, by challenging every Republican opponent: “What are you for?” Other than making Donald Trump happy, they have no answer.

Good News, Bad News

Starting with the good news …

The U.S. Supreme Court made a right and proper judgment on Wednesday (for a change), ruling against the former guy in his attempt to hide evidence of his own and others’ involvement from the House committee investigating the attempted coup on January 6th 2021.

Trump wanted to prevent the Congressional committee investigating the insurrection of January 6, from gaining access to White House records for that day and the days leading up to it, invoking executive privilege. The justices overwhelmingly, 8-1, ruled against him.  Executive privilege can only exist while you’re an executive … which Trump no longer is!

The ruling on Wednesday opens up a trove of documents to congressional investigators who have sought them to determine Trump’s actions and mindset in the weeks leading up to the Jan. 6 attack, as well as what he did as his supporters were rioting at the Capitol.

Among the documents sought by the committee are speech drafts, call and visitor logs, handwritten notes and other files previously kept by senior Trump aides like chief of staff Mark Meadows, adviser Stephen Miller, press secretary Kayleigh McEnany and White House associate counsel Patrick Philbin.

The only member of the high court who signaled he would have granted Trump’s request for emergency relief was Justice Clarence Thomas who has proven time and time again that he has outlived his usefulness on the Court.  To me, the surprise in this ruling was that the three justices appointed by Trump during his tenure in the Oval Office, Gorsuch, Kavanaugh, and Barrett, all voted against his interests and for truth, justice, and democracy.

A half of a thumb-up for the Court for (finally) doing the right thing.


And then, the bad (really bad) news …

The two bills languishing in the Senate that would have protected our constitutional right to vote, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act and the Freedom to Vote Act, are DOA – Dead On Arrival, thanks to 52 people … 50 ‘Republicans’ and Joe Manchin and Kyrsten B. Sinema.  Given the draconian laws that have been passed in some 40+ states that would disenfranchise Blacks, Hispanics, the poor, the elderly, and the young, voting will no longer be ‘fair and equal’ or just or democratic.

The last best hope, and it is a slim one indeed, is that the courts rule against the states’ aggressive measures to skew the outcome, but given recent history, I’m not holding my breath on that one.

A number of groups have already said they will withdraw their support from Manchin and Sinema over their unwillingness to protect our voices at the polls, but unfortunately neither of them are up for re-election this year.  Both will be up for re-election in 2024, leaving us with few choices for removing them from the Senate for another three years.

The United States Constitution gives the Senate the power to expel any member by a two-thirds vote, but given the current makeup of the Senate and the fact that the 50 Republican Senators seem to love Manchin and Sinema (and why wouldn’t they, for both are Republicans at the core), the odds of that happening are slim-to-none and it has not happened since 1862.

I wrote a scathing letter to my own Republican Senator Rob Portman tonight indicating that I was highly disappointed to find that neither he nor any other Republican in the Senate could find even a smidgeon of conscience.  Under ordinary circumstances, I would have informed him that I would be actively seeking to ensure his bid for re-election fails, but I cannot do that, because he is retiring at the end of this term.

And so, we are left with few choices and little voice.  One thing we can and must do to whatever extent possible, though, is offer to help those who would otherwise be disenfranchised by helping them with unwieldy registration forms, providing transportation, child care, or whatever else they need to ensure they can cast a vote and vote the clowns out of office in November!

Why Would Anyone Ever Vote for a Republican?

I have voted for a Republican a few times in the past, but I would have to be out of my mind to do so today. The Republican Party, by its own admission, now has no ideology, no platform, and only seek dominance at whatever cost to We the People. Our friend Jeff has written an excellent post that perfectly reflects my own views of today’s GOP and I am sharing it with you this afternoon. Thank you, Jeff, for both your words and implied permission to share them!

On The Fence Voters

From time to time, I like to pose a question to those out there who vote, at least those who do so fairly reliably every two years: Why in the hell would you ever vote for a Republican?

Because, quite frankly, the evidence is overwhelming that the GOP, as it is presently constituted, represents a clear and present danger to the American people. Do you think that sounds a little harsh? Too bad. I write and speak as someone who’s seen enough of this party to know we’re in deep trouble if they’re ever able to get power back. How much more evidence do we need?

Voting for a Republican president these days will get you the possibility of more crackpots and extremists who will sit on the Supreme Court for years into the future. Look no further than the current iteration of radical judges occupying that body, brought to…

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Mid-Terms 2022 — Vote Him OUT!!!

Madison Cawthorn is one of the sleaziest Republicans in the House of Representatives, though he does have a lot of competition for that title.  At only 26 years of age, he is the youngest member of Congress, and also among the cockiest.  I have an ever-growing list of those members of Congress who deserve to be ousted, who are not interested in the success of the nation and its people, but only their own quest for power and money, and Mr. Cawthorn is near the top of the list.

Cawthorn is known for indulging in conspiracy theories and for his incendiary rhetoric, but not noted for hard work or seriousness of purpose when it comes to legislating.  He has said he intends to use his position to be a messenger rather than a legislator, writing to his colleagues, “I have built my staff around comms rather than legislation.”  Funny, I thought his job as a member of the House of Representatives was to legislate.

It is his rhetoric that may keep him from returning to Congress next year, however, for he had a documented role in the events of January 6th, 2021 and many North Carolina voters are petitioning to bar him from seeking re-election.  In a complaint filed with the North Carolina State Board of Elections, a group of North Carolina voters—represented by a team of legal experts that includes attorneys from the advocacy group Free Speech For People and former justices of the state Supreme Court—argue that Cawthorn is ineligible for public office under Section Three of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, known as the Disqualification Clause.

“The coordinated and violent January 6 attack on the United States Capitol in an effort to prevent Congress from certifying the presidential vote was an insurrection against the United States,” Ron Fein, legal director of Free Speech For People, said in a statement. “The Constitution disqualifies from public office any elected officials who aided that insurrection.”

“As set forth in our complaint, the publicly available evidence, including Rep. Cawthorn’s own statements and reports that he or his office coordinated with the January 6 organizers, establish reasonable suspicion that Rep. Cawthorn aided the insurrection, thereby disqualifying him from federal office,” Fein added. “We look forward to asking him about his involvement under oath.”

In the short year that Cawthorn has held a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, he has been controversial and has come under fire more than a few times …

  • Before Trump supporters stormed the United States Capitol on January 6th, 2021, Cawthorn addressed the crowd and said, “this crowd has some fight.” He voted not to certify the Electoral College results in Congress and called Republicans who voted to certify the results “spineless cowards”. He later attempted to blame the attempted coup on a “Democratic machine of agitators strategically placed inside of this group”, amid intensifying calls for his resignation for his part in stoking the riots.
  • On February 13, 2021, Transportation Security Administration agents at the Asheville Regional Airport discovered an unloaded Glock 9mm handgun and loaded magazine in Cawthorn’s carry-on bag. The gun and ammunition were confiscated and stored by airport police.
  • In late February 2021, Cawthorn and a dozen other Republican House members skipped votes and enlisted others to vote for them, citing the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. But he and the other members were actually attending the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), which was held at the same time as their absences. In response, the Campaign for Accountability, an ethics watchdog group, filed a complaint with the House Committee on Ethics and requested an investigation into Cawthorn and the other lawmakers.
  • At an August 2021 Macon County, North Carolina Republican Party event, Cawthorn said: “if our election systems continue to be rigged and continue to be stolen, then it’s going to lead to one place—and it’s bloodshed.”
  • In October 2021, Cawthorn said, “our culture today is trying to completely de-masculate [sic] all of the young men”, because “they don’t want people who are going to stand up”. He issued a call to mothers, who he said are the “most vicious” conservatives: “If you are raising a young man, please raise them to be a monster”. In November 2021, Cawthorn accused politicians of “trying to make everyone genderless, sexless, and just absolutely Godless”, and declared that Americans “want our culture back, and if you want to stand in the way that, we will run you over.”
  • Cawthorn reacted to the ‘not guilty’ verdict in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse by offering Rittenhouse an internship, saying, “You have a right to defend yourself, so be armed, be dangerous and be moral”.
  • Over the past two years, at least 20 women have come forward and accused Cawthorn of sexual misconduct and sexual assault … where there is so much smoke, there’s bound to be a fire somewhere.

Seriously, is this the sort of person you want making the laws under which we must all live?  Is this the person whose salary you will spend your hard-earned tax dollars to support?  I think not.  Let us hope that the voters of North Carolina are successful in their case to bar Cawthorn from running for re-election this year, or failing that, that the people in his North Carolina district have enough sense not to return him to the halls of Congress!


Note to Readers:  Between now and the November mid-term elections, I will be occasionally writing a post about various members of Congress who, for one reason or another, I believe should be voted out or voted in, depending on their qualifications for the office.  This is the first of many!

The Week’s Best Cartoons 1/8

This is TokyoSand’s first cartoon post of the year and one that is well worthy of sharing.  Needless to say, the main topic of the week is the one-year anniversary of the attempted coup on January 6th … and some of the ‘toons have brilliantly captured the thoughts and reactions one year later.  As always, TS has culled the best of the lot for us, so enjoy!  Thank you, TokyoSand, for all your hard work on these Saturday posts!


It’s a new year and I’m back with our normal Saturday editorial cartoons feature. This year started off with a bang! New Year By Mike Luckovich By Walt Handlesman By Rob Tornoe January 6 Anniversary By Pat Bagley By Bill Bramhall By Mike Luckovich By Michael Ramirez By Lalo Alcaraz By Kal…

See all the ‘toons at TokyoSand’s Political Charge!

One Nation, Divisible, with Liberty and Justice for Few – How the U.S. could split up

Due to my own unfortunate circumstances of late, I have not been reading many blogs, but I’m gradually working my way back into the fray. Tonight, I read Robert’s blog and I found it to be extremely well-written (as his always are) and more thought-provoking than any I’ve read in a long time. I urge you to read this from start to finish and think about the possible outcomes of our current state of division. There are no easy or particularly good solutions. Thank you, Robert, for this excellent piece of work!

The Secular Jurist

One Nation, Divisible, with Liberty and Justice for Few
How the United States of America could split up much sooner than expected
January 3, 2022

By Robert A. Vella

The United States of America is currently the longest standing democracy in the world at nearly 246 years old (as a constitutional republic, it is almost 234 years old).  The next oldest democracy is Norway at 208 years old.  That’s quite an accomplishment considering that it barely survived tearing itself to pieces during the disastrous Civil War of 1861-1865 and also the global threat to democracy posed by Nazi Germany, fascist Italy, and Imperial Japan during the catastrophic Second World War.  But, even the most optimistic Americanophiles have always known that the U.S. could not endure forever.  All countries experience multiple peaks of achievement and valleys of failure, and all of its various forms of government are inherently transitory.  Even the…

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¡Adios 2021, Bienvenida 2022!

With less than 24 hours left in 2021, perhaps it’s time for a few personal reflections.  I’ve had more than plenty of time to just sit and think during the past four months, and often my thoughts have revealed more about my own inner workings than anything. One thing I learned about myself is that I’m really good at ‘talking the talk’, but when it comes to ‘walking the walk’, I fail miserably.  I consoled myself with … “not everyone is able to attend protest marches or donate large sums of money … we all give according to our abilities.”  All of which sounds very nice, but … with a bit more effort, might I have been able to attend a BlackLivesMatter protest near my home?  Probably.  Might I have donated money to the cause?  Absolutely.  Instead, I used my voice to write blog posts criticizing racism, racists, misogynists and other forms of bigotry, as well as the corrupt and evil politicians, but what did that really accomplish?

Lest you think I’m beating up on myself for my shortcomings, I’m not.  I’m simply trying to learn enough from them so that I can do better at some point in the future.  Given my current health issues, my abilities are still very limited, but I can focus on what I need to do differently when I am able to.

As I’ve mentioned in previous ‘New Year’ posts, I don’t make New Year’s resolutions, for it is only setting oneself up for failure.  I always, though, have hopes for the upcoming year, and this year is no different.  Here are a few of my hopes for 2022.

On a personal note, I hope to regain my health, or at least most of it, and be able to return to a fairly active life.  I hope my family and friends remain safe, healthy, and financially secure throughout the year.

On a more political note, I have many hopes for the country and the world …

  • I would like to see the January 6th committee submit to the Department of Justice recommendations for criminal prosecutions for the former guy, as well as Rudy Giuliani, Steve Bannon, Mark Meadows, and all other politicians who played a role in the coup attempt. Then I would like to see Attorney General Garland follow through and prosecute those people to the fullest extent of the law.  They should all be in prison by this time next year.
  • I would like to see the end of Covid, meaning that vaccine mandates will need to be enforced relentlessly and at least 95% of the people in this country fully vaccinated. The naysayers are more than welcome, in my book, to leave the country … perhaps they would enjoy living in Brazil … or Siberia.
  • I hope that in the coming year, leaders and policy-makers in every nation on earth start listening to the scientists and taking climate change more seriously. The Paris Accords are a starting point only, but I think we can realistically say that it’s too little, and possibly even too late.  The climate deniers can join the vaccine deniers in Brazil!
  • I hope, though I’m fairly certain it is a futile hope, that the Republicans and Democrats can learn to live together in peace. In other words, that members of Congress can set aside their party affiliations and actually work to legislate policies that are in the best interests of the people of this nation.  Compromise is possible, but it cannot only benefit the wealthiest, most powerful individuals.
  • I hope that reasonable gun laws will be legislated in the coming year, for the gun culture in the U.S. has gone well past lunacy! No ordinary person needs to own a gun … it is an ego trip for power-hungry, arrogant people.
  • I hope that both President Biden and Vice President Harris remain safe and well throughout the year.
  • I hope that S. 4: John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act of 2021 and S. 2747: Freedom to Vote Act and S. 2093: For the People Act of 2021 pass in the Senate long before the November elections in order to ensure that every eligible voter is able to vote without undue hardship.  These three bills may well be the most important ones this year, for without them, our democracy will crumble.
  • I wish for, but know we are a long ways from, an end to bigotry in all its many forms.  Racism, religious bigotry, white supremacy, misogyny and other forms of bigotry have no place in today’s world … they should have ended long ago, but greed and arrogance seem built into the human mindset and far too much harm has been done in the name of “supremacy”.

And last, but not least, I wish all of you, my blogging family, a safe, peaceful and joyous 2022.  Cheers, love ‘n hugs to you all!

I Just Don’t Get It 🤷

Perhaps I’m a bit simple-minded these days, but I’m really confused over something and I’m hoping someone can make sense of this for me.  The issue?  Why is it that the United States Congress can pass, relatively without argument, a bill that allocates $768 billion for a single year to the military, in large part to purchase more tanks, guns, and nuclear weapons … hardware made with the sole purpose of killing humans … but they cannot pass a bill that would help people who are struggling to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table?

To be clear, here is a summary of the major points in the Build Back Better bill (aka BBB) that congressional Republicans are determined to send to its grave:

  • Universal preschool for children
  • Free community college
  • Lower prescription drug costs
  • Tax cuts for families with children and childcare support
  • 12 weeks of paid family leave
  • Housing investments
  • Tax cuts for electric vehicles and other climate incentives

The cost of the Build Back Better bill is $150 billion per year … just under 20% of the cost of the recently passed defense bill.  Build Back Better helps people … people who need the help whether due to the pandemic or other circumstances beyond their control, whereas the defense bill largely helps arms manufacturers.  The refusal of Republicans in Congress to even consider the BBB at this time is a huge hypocrisy and in my view is further proof, as if any were needed, that Republicans largely do not give a royal damn about the average person in this nation, including their own voters.  Their fortunes and therefore their votes are tied to the wealthy corporations and groups like the NRA, arms manufacturers, and fossil fuel industry and to hell with John Doe!

And on another, but related note, why in the Sam Hell are both of the voting rights bills stagnating somewhere in the Capitol, unlikely to see the light of day?  With nearly every state in the nation passing draconian laws that will make it harder for the average citizen to vote and damn near impossible for many who are not white middle-class males to vote, it is not rocket science to figure out that the federal government needs to step in and protect the most important right granted to We the People under the U.S. Constitution!

The two voting rights bills, the John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act, and the Freedom to Vote Act, are being held up by not only every Republican senator, but two Democratic senators, Joe Manchin of West Virginia and Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona.  These 52 unconscionable people either do not understand the meaning of a democracy or else are determined to undermine the very foundation of our nation and turn it into a banana republic, an illegitimate dictatorship.

The Republicans in Congress are not in the least bit bothered by spending nearly a trillion dollars of OUR hard-earned tax dollars to build more killing machinery, yet they will not lift so much as a pen to protect our rights, our very lives.  I sincerely hope that the majority of Republican senators and representatives currently sitting in Congress are voted out of office next November for they do NOT represent the people of this country!

Snarky Snippets Returns!!!

It seems that every time I log onto any of the news media sites, I am driven to gnashing my teeth and muttering expletives under my breath … or sometimes on top of my breath, which explains how my cat learned the “f-word”!  There is just so damn much to be angry about these days, so much pure idiocy in the world.  I often look at friends and wonder how they can simply ignore the world around them and live in their own little nooks, happily focused on what to wear to a party or the new ornament they bought for their holiday tree or what to cook for supper, with never a mention of climate change, coup attempts, corrupt politicians, mass shootings, etc.  Must be nice to be able to tune it all out, but I can’t do it.  Thus, what follows is my first ‘Snarky Snippets’ post in several months.


Thumbs Down to Time’s “Person of the Year”!

Time magazine’s “Person of the Year” for 2021 is the world’s most wealthy human, Elon Musk.  ELON MUSK???  Seriously???  They couldn’t find anyone more worthy for this honour than a man who is more interested in flying into space for no good reason than in providing food and housing for the poor, or helping victims of a natural disaster regain their lives?  On hearing this announcement, I immediately lost any and all respect for Time and vowed never again to subscribe to this publication.

But then, I took a look back at some of their previous “Person of the Year” selections and realized that I should have parted ways with Time long ago.  For example, Adolph Hitler was Time’s “Man of the Year” in 1938, and Joseph Stalin was actually awarded the honour twice, in 1939 and 1942.  Donald Trump was chosen in 2016 and Vladimir Putin in 2007.  To be fair, they have made some good choices, such as Greta Thunberg in 2019, Lech Walesa in 1981, and Dr. Martin Luther King in 1963.

Elon Musk is a nasty man.  For starters, he called quarantine measures “fascist” and demanded that officials return people’s “freedom.” He then kept his Tesla plant open in defiance of public health orders, with the result that over a hundred Tesla workers contracted COVID. They said the company covered up the outbreak. Then he fired workers after telling them they could take unpaid time off if they didn’t feel safe coming to work. He threatened to rescind his employees’ stock options if they unionized. He broke 11 other labor laws by harassing pro-union employees.  Although his net worth is somewhere above $300 billion, he pays relatively little in taxes and has received $1.3 billion in tax breaks over the past two decades.  He is an arrogant s.o.b. who denigrates any who dare to question or criticize him.

Time defines their “Person of the Year” as: “the individual or group who most shaped the previous 12 months, for better or for worse”, so I suppose in that context it makes some sense that they would glorify the likes of Hitler, Stalin, and Musk.  Personally, though, I would prefer seeing the honour, such as it is, used to pay tribute to those who have had a positive impact on life here on earth.  Bye-bye Time magazine!


Where are the Adults???

People have always and will always have ideological differences about how our government should function and how society ought to work … that’s nothing new.  Since its inception, Congress has been a venue for those differences to be aired and, at best, a compromise reached, at worst a stalemate that did no good for the people of this nation.  All of this is nothing new, but one thing is new and extremely disturbing.  In the past, we have elected adults with at least a modicum of education, a basic understanding of how the government functions, but today it seems the most immature samples of the human species are occupying a portion of the seats in our lawmaking body and are turning the process of governance into a three-ring circus.

There are numerous examples of this, such as Margie Greene and her QAnon conspiracy theories, her praise and adoration for a juvenile murderer (Kyle Rittenhouse).  Or gun-totin’ Lauren Boebert and her hostile, bigoted speech directed toward one of her fellow representatives simply because Ilhan Omar is a Muslim.  Or Paul Gosar, who posted an anime clip on Twitter that showed him killing another representative, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

All of the aforementioned incidents were horrifying examples of people who do NOT belong in Congress or any other branch of government, and all of them made my blood boil.  But perhaps the most disturbing were the holiday pictures taken and posted by Representatives Thomas Massey and Lauren Boebert showing their entire family, even young children, holding assault rifles.  Any mature adult with half a brain would NEVER even consider allowing their children to touch such a weapon, let alone take a picture of them with these instruments of death.  And even if they found it humorous, any adult with half a brain who was in a position of great responsibility to a nation of 330 million people would NOT for one minute post that picture on social media!!!

There are at least a dozen members of this Congress who should never, ever have been elected in the first place and should be occupying a prison cell or a mental hospital rather than an office in the United States Capitol!  I can only hope the people who elected these buffoons in 2020 have seen enough to make much wiser decisions next year!