Snarky Snippets … Back On Track

Whatever would I make of this blog if I didn’t have Trump and his band of thugs to write about?  Hmmmm … I might have to go back to reading whole books and writing book reviews, or perhaps shut the blog down and go back to knitting scarves and afghans for my friends (yes, I do know how to knit and used to spend many an evening so occupied.  A year or two ago, I gave my stash of yarn and supplies to my daughter, who is now knitting me a sweater with a wolf on it and wolf paw prints on the sleeves!)  Anyway, I do have Trump and the rest of the jerks to write about, so …


The Planet vs Trump … 

Since taking office on January 20th 2017, Donald Trump has had several goals, all of them intended to destroy the U.S. But one, the one he calls his “crowning achievement”, is to destroy the planet, making it uninhabitable for all life forms.  His deregulatory moves have had a terrible effect on all life forms, but they are moves that he has said will “save lives, lift the economy and help the auto industry.”  Frankly, if I cannot breathe, if the bees who pollinate our food are dying, if species are dying out … who gives a royal f*ck about the auto industry … or the economy, for that matter?  And save lives???  What a crock.

During the administration of President Obama, a fuel economy standard was put into place that would lower CO2 emissions, save us all money at the pump, and help with restoring cleaner air to every country in the world.  Given that these standards were put in place under Obama, naturally Trump had to destroy them, just as he destroyed his friends’ toys as a child.  Even the auto industry was not fully behind Mr. Trump’s deregulation and today, four of those automakers are standing firm in their commitment to the people and the environment.

On Wednesday, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, leading a multistate coalition, filed a lawsuit challenging the Trump Administration’s disastrous final rule rolling back the nation’s Clean Car Standards.  Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and the District of Columbia. The battle is expected to reach the Supreme Court.

Ford, Honda, BMW and Volkswagen, while not a part of the lawsuit, have split from the other automakers, declaring that they will continue to follow the lead of California and 13 other states that are upholding tougher standards than those set by the federal government.

By the Trump administration’s own calculations, changing the rule increases the emissions of greenhouse gases, the primary cause of global warming, by at least 867 million metric tons relative to the standards being rolled back. That is greater than the amount many midsize countries put out in a year.  It will also cost the average car owner an additional $500 over a three-year period in fuel costs.

Yet another test for the Supreme Court to ultimately decide whether they place more value on the planet and human life, or whether they are Trumpies above all else.


Pushing the boundaries … or are there any boundaries for Trump?

Since beginning his battle with Twitter a few days ago over his false tweets that Twitter put a fact-checking message on, Trump seems determined to show us just how utterly nasty he can be.  Folks, you can go to your local landfill, dig around all day, and I don’t think you will find anything as ugly, decayed, and downright nasty as the person who sits in the Oval Office today.

Until yesterday, I had never heard of “Cowboys for Trump”.  My supper would have settled better if I had never heard of them.  ‘Cowboys for Trump’ is a right-wing organization founded by a former street preacher named Couy Griffin.  Griffin is also a country commissioner for the county of Otero, New Mexico.  Apparently, the people of that county don’t much care about such things as education or qualifications.  Hmmmm … seems that 40% of the people in the U.S. don’t much care about those things, either.

Griffin has led a number of protests against the closing of the nation’s businesses and stay-at-home orders … no surprise there … he fits the prototype.  But, this week he overstepped his bounds.  In an interview with the Daily Beast on Tuesday, he called for the execution of at least two democratic governors, Governor Gretchen Whitmer of Michigan and Governor Ralph Northam of Virginia.  Why?  He claims they are ‘traitors’ for the restrictions they have imposed in their states, trying to keep their populace safe in the face of the coronavirus pandemic.

“You get to pick your poison: You either go before a firing squad, or you get the end of the rope.”

What a bastard, yes?  But wait … it gets even worse.

Earlier this week, a video surfaced of Griffin at some event with his ‘cowboys’ giving a speech whereupon he said …

“The only good Democrat is a dead Democrat.”

Okay, so the man is a bloody idiot … we can ignore that, right, although he frankly should be behind bars in Otero Country tonight for that is hate speech and incitement to violence in 8 short words.  But wait … that’s not all …

So pleased and inspired by that video was Donald Trump that he re-tweeted the video on Twitter, with a comment …

“Thank you Cowboys. See you in New Mexico!”

If I said on Twitter, “The only good Republican is a dead Republican”, do you know how fast my account would be closed … forever?  And do you know how long it would take for the cops to show up at my door?  And yet some jackass in Podunk New Mexico can say it in a public venue, tweet it on a public forum, and the fool who calls himself a ‘president’ (and I use the term loosely) can re-play it, again on a public forum, with impunity!  How utterly … unprofessional, demeaning, and downright NASTY is this sorry excuse for a ‘man’?  What’s next … what new low will I be writing about tomorrow?


On a brighter note …

There are many republicans in Congress who I’d like to see ousted, who should have been ousted long ago, but while the list is long, one man is always at the top of the list:  Mitch McConnell.  Mitch gave his all to ensure that President Barack Obama had to fight tooth and nail for what few proposals he got by during his eight-year tenure in office.  He ensured that our Supreme Court has the least integrity of any in the history of our nation.  And he rules the Senate with an iron hand, threatening and bullying just as Trump does.  Mitch long ago forgot to whom he owes his allegiance and is naught but a high-paid bootlicker for Donald Trump.

I was happy to see this new ad by The Lincoln Project, the political action committee formed in late 2019 by several prominent Republicans with the goal of preventing the reelection of Donald Trump in the 2020 presidential election.

A change will come

Just after I put my post about racism in the U.S. on the schedule, I saw this post by my friend Brosephus. In this post, he addresses some of the same issues I did, only from a much more up-close-and-personal view. With his permission, I am re-blogging this and hope you will take a couple of minutes to read it … his words are so very important. Thank you, Brosephus, for sharing these thoughts and words.

The Mind of Brosephus

I’m tired of seeing, hearing, and writing about unjustified police actions on the people they’ve sworn to protect and serve. It’s a never ending loop of agony and despair. I look at my family, my friends, and my coworkers and wonder when will this cycle stop? We’ve been in this loop since before the Emancipation Proclamation, and it’s time for a change in approach.

I’ve told people over the last year or so that we’re barreling towards a date with violence in America. Look at the response to the killing of George Floyd. No, rioting and looting is not the way to address his killing. However, I understand the frustration being uncorked because the residents of Minneapolis have been protesting police brutality there for a while. It’s the same all across America.

When you ignore, downplay, or dismiss peaceful protest, the end result is violence. Colin Kaepernick ended his NFL…

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America Needs an Election Intervention

Jeff over at On the Fence Voters, like most of us, has been giving a lot of thought to the upcoming election. He shares some of those thoughts and a possible solution to the dreaded scenarios that have played through our heads, in his post tonight. Please take a minute to read his thoughts, and let him know what you think. Thanks Jeff!!!

On The Fence Voters

Since the year 2000, we’ve had three presidential elections that we could easily question the final results. We know about the fiasco with George W. Bush against Al Gore and the hanging chads, not to mention the purging of African-American voters by his brother and then Governor of Florida, Jeb Bush. Oh, and of course, the Supreme Court weighing in by stopping the recount as well.

There was also the election of 2004 when John Kerry lost Ohio by roughly 118,000 votes. Still, there were questions at the time of voting irregularities and purges of Democratic voters by then Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell. It didn’t matter in the long run because Kerry conceded the election and never demanded a recount.

And in 2016, with a little help from the Russians and voter suppression, the future worst president of the United States was elected. Here we are on the…

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The War Between Trump & Twitter

Twitter was a day late and a dollar short, but they have made a start.  Yesterday (or was it the day before?) I wrote about how Trump’s tweets falsely claiming that journalist Joe Scarborough was somehow responsible for the 2001 death of a young woman on his staff.  The young woman’s husband, deeply hurt by having such falsehoods aired in such a public venue, wrote a compelling letter to Twitter, asking them to remove the tweets.  They did not, and as of this writing say that they will not remove the tweets.  Frankly, I hope the widower, Timothy Klausutis, sues Twitter.  I’d also like to see him sue Trump, but of course since Attorney General William Barr has proclaimed Trump to be ‘above the law’, that is not likely to happen, at least until Trump is removed from office.

Twitter did, however, take a step … a very tiny step … toward mitigating some of the damage Trump’s tweets do as regards the upcoming election.  They began using a fact-check label for his tweets.

fact-check

If you click on the link, you will be directed to this …

fact-check-2

It’s little enough, but a step in the right direction.  Trump, however, was enraged and claimed that …

“Twitter is now interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election. They are saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots is incorrect, based on fact-checking by Fake News CNN and the Amazon Washington Post. Twitter is completely stifling FREE SPEECH, and I, as President, will not allow it to happen!”

How the Sam Hell is adding a fact-check disclaimer “stifling” his free speech???  If they took down his lying tweets, or if they banned him, then he might claim an abridgement of his free speech, though I would argue a justifiable one.  However, he is still tweeting lies and more lies, so there has been NO abridgement to his freedom of speech.  Nonetheless, Trump being Trump, he didn’t stop there.

“Republicans feel that Social Media Platforms totally silence conservatives voices. We will strongly regulate, or close them down, before we can ever allow this to happen. We can’t let large scale Mail-In Ballots take root in our Country. It would be a free for all on cheating, forgery and the theft of Ballots. Whoever cheated the most would win. Likewise, Social Media. Clean up your act, NOW!!!!”

The only act I see that needs to be cleaned up is the Trump Circus Act, the lies, threats, bullying, more lies, and the most unprofessional verbiage I’ve ever heard from ANY president, bar none.  The reality is that there is very little voter fraud in any voting venue, at the polls or via mail-in ballots.  The other reality is that Trump does not have the power to shut down or censor social media outlets.

But, the fun doesn’t stop there, folks.  After Twitter refused to take down Trump’s false tweets about Joe Scarborough and the death of Lori Klausutis, Trump was asked at a press conference yesterday afternoon, if he had seen Mr. Klausutis’ letter, he responded …

“Yeah, I have. I’m sure that ultimately they want to get to the bottom of it and it’s a very serious situation. It’s a very suspicious thing and I hope somebody gets to the bottom of it. It would be a very good thing. As you know there’s no statute of limitations.”

THERE IS NO BOTTOM TO GET TO, YOU MORON!!!  Never was a shred of doubt that Ms. Klausutis died of natural causes, and Joe Scarborough was out of the state at the time she collapsed and died.  The only explanation I can come up with for his lunacy in continuing to put forth this obviously false conspiracy theory is that Donald Trump likes to hurt people.  He enjoys causing pain.  He is, in addition to all his other rotten qualities, a sadist.  That Twitter and Facebook continue to give a voice to such a cruel and malignant ‘man’ is unconscionable, in my book.  Remember the story I related a week or so ago about how he used to trip his children and make them fall on the ski trails?  That is the sign of a sadist.  Remember that as a teenager in military academy he tried to shove a classmate out of a second-story window over a dispute about a game?  That is the sign of a sadist.  Fortunately, he never had pets!

I saw a quote earlier today by Rob Reiner that says it all: “Donald Trump is not just a failure as a President, he is a failure as a human being.”  This, my friends, is the truth.

Not The “Grand” Ol’ Party” Anymore

Boy, the GOP sure has a lot of class these days, don’t they?  Remember when GOP stood for ‘Grand Old Party’?  Nothing grand about them today … old, yes, but damn sure not grand.  It started long ago, but once they threw their weight behind the least classy person on the planet, they have sunk to several all-time lows in U.S. politics, and seemingly with no remorse, no shame.

The latest?


Well, for starters, Trump’s son Eric.  Now, we should probably give Eric a pass, for you can look at him and tell that, like his father, he’s a bit dimwitted.  Still, somebody should have stopped him from speaking in public long ago, for he seems to take some great pride in his idiocy.  Last week, during an interview with Fox News’s Jeanine Pirro, he made the following claim …

“They think they’re taking away Donald Trump’s greatest tool, which is being able to go into an arena and fill it with 50,000 people every single time.  You watch — they’ll milk it every single day between now and November 3. And guess what? After November 3, coronavirus will magically all of a sudden go away and disappear and everybody will be able to reopen. They’re trying to deprive him of his greatest asset.”

Eric-TrumpOnly one problem with Eric’s theory, which is that more than 350,000 people around the world have died, 100,269 in the U.S.  So, what???  Did France, Italy, Spain, the UK and every other nation on earth collude with U.S. Democrats to perpetuate this “hoax”?  What about those bodies, Eric?  How to you explain the deaths?  How do you explain the fact that every nation in the Western world has closed businesses, some issuing strict lockdown orders?  All just to defeat your father?  Guess what?  Donald Trump is just not that important … not by any stretch of the imagination.  Eric is, as always, an idiot.


And then, there’s Trump senior, who went on a bit of a tirade over the weekend, as he seems to do whenever there is a holiday weekend.  I guess he gets bored, but this time he called people names, fat-shamed a democrat, and just generally acted like a 13-year-old boy in heat.  He has done some extremely low-brow stunts before, such as the time he showed a doctored video of himself beating up a reporter, but this one takes the cake.  In normal times, the FCC would step in and ban this ad.

Last week, Joe Biden made one of his gaffes.  In the grand scheme of things, while it was a stupid thing to say, it only rates about a 1 on the stupid scale, while most times Trump opens his mouth, it rates at least an 8.  However, Trump will play up Joe’s gaffe for more than it’s worth.  He posted a doctored meme and a doctored video showing Ghana’s dancing pallbearers (a tradition in Ghana) carrying a casket marked “Biden”.  This is not only tasteless, but is against FCC rules.  But then, Trump can do anything he wants, according to AG William Barr, so …


I told you last week about his wrongful accusation against journalist Joe Scarborough, accusing him of murdering an intern on his staff back in the days when Scarborough was in the House of Representatives.  There was no basis for Trump’s accusation … the staffer died of a heart condition in 2001, the autopsy and police investigation at the time revealed no sign of foul play, and Scarborough wasn’t even in the same state at the time!  But the Idiot-in-Chief can’t abide the fact that Scarborough, a republican, is holding Trump’s feet to the fire, is not reporting on the “party line” as his buddies over at Fox do.

Well, the upshot of this one is that the deceased woman’s husband, Timothy J. Klausutis, wrote a letter to Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey asking him to please remove Trump’s tweets.  The letter reads, in part …

“My request is simple: Please delete these tweets … I’m asking you to intervene in this instance because the president of the United States has taken something that does not belong to him — the memory of my dead wife — and perverted it for perceived political gain.”

Very eloquently stated, and if I were Mr. Dorsey, I would have taken the tweets down immediately and given Trump a final warning.  But, don’t expect any attack of conscience on the part of Twitter.  A “spokesperson” responded …

“We are deeply sorry about the pain these statements, and the attention they are drawing, are causing the family. We’ve been working to expand existing product features and policies so we can more effectively address things like this going forward, and we hope to have those changes in place shortly.”

What a crock of compassion, huh?  I hope Mr. Klausutis files suit against Twitter and wins!  This is eerily reminiscent of the pain caused by Alex Jones’ unfounded conspiracy theory that Sandy Hook never happened.  What the Sam Hell is wrong with people?

Trump’s tweets in this and many other instances do not fall under ‘freedom of speech’, but rather of hijacking a public platform to spread filth and lies.


No, my friends, there is zero class or dignity within the GOP in this, the era of Trump.  Every single republican who condones these behaviours … false premises, conspiracy theories, name-calling … is beneath contempt.  Any republican who fails to speak out against these atrocities must share the guilt of Trump, his ignoble sons, the greedy Jack Dorsey, and others who allow this abominable behaviour.  Quite literally, this is not a nation I respect or even like anymore.  That people tolerate this sort of behaviour, that there are no longer filters for people’s speech and actions, disgusts me.  No, the GOP is no longer the ‘grand’ anything.

Five Long Months Ahead …

The 2016 election was not a fair and honest election.  If it had been, we would be writing about President Hillary Clinton today.  The election was “rigged”, to use Trump’s own terminology, in ways almost too numerous to count.  Gerrymandering takes top billing, as evidenced by the fact that Hillary Clinton won the election by nearly 3 million votes, yet because of gerrymandered districts, Trump ‘won’ the electoral college.  Other means of disenfranchising poor and minority voters came into play, as did propaganda by Russian entities, as well as Trump’s own dirty campaign.

Our own intelligence agencies tell us that the Russians have been spreading disinformation and propaganda for over a year now, gerrymandered districts have only been re-districted in two states that I’m aware of.  Add to that the crisis of the year, the coronavirus pandemic and … well, how could we possibly have a fair and honest election?  Most states are looking to a mail-in voting system, partial or complete, in November, but Donald Trump is jumping up and down, shrieking at the top of his lungs that it would be unfair to him.  No evidence, just … well, Donnie knows that if states have mail-in voting, people cannot be stopped at the polls, will not have to travel long distances to vote, and in short … far more people are likely to vote if they can do so from the comfort and security of their own home.  Increasing voter turnout is not what Trump wants … can you guess why?  Because those people who are typically disenfranchised are poor and minority voters who would be most inclined to vote for a democrat, the party that believes in putting people first, ahead of profit.

In 2016, only 55.7% of eligible voters actually cast a vote.  Barely over half!  I’ve discussed before the reasons.  Since 1972, the highest voter turnout was in 2008 when people were excited to have an African-American running for office, but even then the percentage of eligible voters that voted was only 58.2%.

Last week, Trump threatened to withhold federal funding from states that switched to mail-in voting, specifically Nevada and Michigan.  Presumably, he figured out that he cannot do that without congressional approval … perhaps one of his overpriced advisors or lawyers told him, so now he has taken a different approach.

“The United States cannot have all Mail In Ballots. It will be the greatest Rigged Election in history. People grab them from mailboxes, print thousands of forgeries and “force” people to sign. Also, forge names. Some absentee OK, when necessary. Trying to use Covid for this Scam!”

Now, you and I know he’s so full of hot air he should be flying by now.  But … there is a very real danger in his spew.  According to former head of DOJ’s civil rights division, Vanita Gupta …

“He is planting the seeds for delegitimizing the election if he loses.  It’s from the playbook. It’ll get more intense as he gets more freaked out.”

In 2016, we heard Trump claim that if he lost, it would be because the election was ‘rigged’ (he seems to like that word a lot, doesn’t he?)  After he won the electoral college, he still claimed the election was ‘rigged’ because his ego couldn’t handle the fact that he had lost the election (popular vote).  If you’ll recall, there were threats of violence among the more radical of his supporters if he were to lose.  Nothing we’re seeing today should surprise us, but …

The danger is greater this year than in 2016 because there is more at stake.  First, it is highly unusual for an incumbent to lose his second term, and it would be as a slap in the face to Trump, who sees himself as the greatest president other than Abraham Lincoln.  Second, while Attorney General William Barr has declared Trump to be ‘above the law’ during his tenure in office … that protection goes away at noon on January 20th 2021 if Trump loses the election.  He is, at that point, an average citizen (albeit a wealthy one with Secret Service protection) and it is not at all unreasonable to think he will face a barrage of lawsuits, likely criminal charges, once he leaves office.

And, of course, there is Trump’s faithful following, mostly either wealthy businessmen who stand to gain under Trump, and evangelicals who will put up with just about anything as long as he promises them he will tear down the wall of separation between church and state, will nominate judges who will strike down the likes of Roe v Wade and Obergefell v Hodges, further shredding civil rights in this nation.  One of his loyal evangelical lapdogs, Rick Wiles, claims that …

“If they take him out, there’s gonna be violence in America. That’s all there is to it….However he leaves, there’s going to be violence in America…There are people in this country — veterans, there are cowboys, mountain men — I mean guys that know how to fight. And they’re going to make a decision that the people who did this to Donald Trump are not going to get away with it. And they’re gonna hunt ’em down.”

Stupid?  Sure … you and I know that, but sadly there are some who think violence is the answer.  It never … NEVER is, but these people carry big guns because they know no other way to make a point, to carry on a civil discourse.

Five months left until election day, folks.  This promises to be the single most contentious election in our lifetimes, mainly because one of the candidates and his party is the most contentious candidate in our lifetimes.  Other factors, such as being in the midst of a pandemic the likes of which we’ve never experienced add to the drama.  I cannot even begin to imagine the atrocities and rhetoric that will be spewed by Trump and the GOP, but I do know it will escalate over the coming months.  Steel yourself, be prepared, don’t let Trump’s rhetoric and the garbage you hear on off-the-wall websites and Fox “News” deter you.  Keep your eye on the ball.  We cannot afford to completely ignore Trump’s hate speech, but we must not let it weaken our resolve to oust him in November.

Just Two Snippets Of Snark Today …

Trump seems to be occupying a heck of a lot of space on my radar screen these days, pushing out most everyone else.  I hoped to write about something else today, but fools, idiots and Trump were all I could see on my radar.  So …


Another temper tantrum …

Trump is threatening to change the venue for the Republican National Convention in August.  Initially planned for an Arena in Charlotte, North Carolina, Trump’s complaint now is that North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper cannot promise that a packed arena will be allowed under the state’s rules to protect people from the spread of the coronavirus.

“I love the Great State of North Carolina, so much so that I insisted on having the Republican National Convention in Charlotte at the end of August. Unfortunately, Democrat Governor, @RoyCooperNC is still in Shutdown mood & unable to guarantee that by August we will be allowed full attendance in the arena.  In other words, we would be spending millions of dollars building the Arena to a very high standard without even knowing if the Democrat Governor would allow the Republican Party to fully occupy the space. Plans are being made by many thousands of enthusiastic Republicans, and others, to head to beautiful North Carolina in August. They must be immediately given an answer by the Governor as to whether or not the space will be allowed to be fully occupied. If not, we will be reluctantly forced to find, with all of the jobs and economic development it brings, another Republican National Convention site. This is not something I want to do. Thank you, and I LOVE the people of North Carolina!”

Now, I fully understand Governor Cooper’s reticence to commit to allowing thousands of people into the arena to mingle and share their germs.  However, think about it.  If the republicans who would attend are so ignorant that they would risk not only their own lives, but also those of their families … let them. Trump’s alternative venue is Florida, where Governor Ron DeSantis is one of the first to throw the doors to the state wide open and throw caution to the winds.  DeSantis, like Trump, has no concern for the lives of people, but only the financial well-being of the wealthy, the tourism dollars that would be put into the state’s coffers.

The only thing that puzzles me is why Trump even cares if there is a convention, for all those who would oppose him have been shoved out of the race by the GOP, so the outcome is a given.  Why bother, why spend all that money and put so many people at risk, when the conclusion is already signed, sealed, delivered?


Lost meaning?

Memorial Day in the United States, celebrated on the last Monday in May, is intended to be a day set aside to remember and honour those who died in service to the nation, those who defended not only this nation, but allied nations as well.  Instead, it has become largely just another day to grill out, drink beer, and socialize.  While you might expect this year to be different, with protections in place to try to protect people from the coronavirus, people don’t have too many brains these days.

People flocked to beaches and other public venues, acting as if their pleasure was the most important thing on earth, and not giving a damn about the lives of others.  Surprised?  I wasn’t surprised, but I am disappointed.  But then, what’s new … I’ve been disappointed in the human race most of my adult life now.

When you have a fool at the helm of the ship, though, the rest will follow.  Trump, in the spirit of patriotism, took the opportunity to mock former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams’ weight, ridicule the looks of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and call former Democratic presidential rival Hillary Clinton a “skank.”  What a way to honour dead soldiers, eh?  But then … being a draft-dodger, he’s already proven to us that he has no respect for the military. What a stalwart example he sets for the masses, eh?  No wonder the U.S. is so hate-filled … it filters down from the top.

Oh, and you know how demanding Trump was that the churches all re-open this weekend?  Well, that was a ploy to please his evangelical base, for Trump himself was out on the golf course again on Sunday morning. Not that I mind … I’m hoping that with all his layers of … er … blubber, the exertion will be too much for him someday, else he’ll get swallowed by a sand trap.


I came across these two cartoons yesterday while on my search for Jolly Monday ‘toons, and thought that, while not appropriate for the non-political Jolly Monday, they would be perfect for a snarky snippets post.

dim-reaperTitanic

A Bit Of Lighter Fare …

Of late, nothing Trump says makes any sense.  Oh wait … he never did make any sense!  But he seems to go off on tangents that are signs that his mind is deteriorating before our very eyes.  In an effort to be fair, I must admit that it is surely difficult to be in a position of so much responsibility, so many important decisions to be made, when you really haven’t the knowledge, education, or intelligence to make any of those decisions wisely.  One of his stupidest statements in the past week or two was this …

“We’re going after Virginia with your crazy governor. … They want to take your Second Amendment away. You know that right? You’ll have nobody guarding your potatoes.”

Who knew that potatoes ranked right up there with the gold at Fort Knox as being under threat and needing constant guarding … with guns!  I need a break from the dark posts that are my norm, and I suspect perhaps you do too … just a little break.  Alexandra Petri, a columnist for The Washington Post, had a bit of fun with that one.  Take a look …


I am a simple potato guardian who needs my Second Amendment rights

Alexandra-PetriBy 

Alexandra Petri 

Columnist

May 20, 2020 at 9:00 a.m. EDT

“We’re going after Virginia with your crazy governor. … They want to take your Second Amendment away. You know that right? You’ll have nobody guarding your potatoes.”

— President Trump, to farmers assembled at the White House

I am a potato guardian. This is the only life I have known. Here is my tale, one no doubt familiar to you, just as the concept of a person who guards potatoes in Virginia is familiar.

Day 1

It is a cold February day, and the new crop of potatoes is just in the ground, an average of six weeks before the last frost. I am in Virginia, the well-known home of potato farming. To guard the potato is a sacred duty, which I have studied since my days at Au Groton, a boarding school for people who aspire one day to protect potatoes. I have my weapon, and I have my training. I settle at the edge of the field with my carbine on my knees and prepare for a long spring.

Day 2

It rained today. I kept my eyes on the potatoes, just as I knew that they would be keeping their eyes on me.

I walked the perimeter of the field. This will be a good crop, if I can only keep it safe for the 75 to 135 days that potatoes require. I must keep it safe.

Day 3

As I walked today, I saw something move just at the corner of the field. But by the time I got there, it was too late. There was a footprint in the soft, slightly acidic soil. A boot, not mine. I think the potato raiders will be here soon. I think they are making their preparations. I must make mine.

Day 4

No sign of the raiders today. At midday, the farmer’s daughter brought me a glass of milk. “You looked thirsty out there,” she told me. I took it from her hands and thanked her. “And you have been sent to guard the potatoes?” she asked. I shrugged. I am a potato guardian of few words. I let my eyes speak for me. “What an interesting life,” she said. “Do you get lonely?” I told her I did not.

But the question has stayed with me. Lonely? Do I get lonely? No. I have the potatoes. And I have my Second Amendment rights. I do not need anything else.

Day 5

The farmer’s daughter brought me another glass of milk and watched me as I sipped it. I think it is too late to tell her that milk is not a good drink when you are hot in the middle of the day. I think we have gotten into a pattern now, which I regret. She is nice. She has kind eyes, like I imagine a potato would have, though she only has two, which is low for a potato.

After drinking the milk, I dozed a little, and when I awoke there were more footprints at the edge of the field. I must be more vigilant. If I do not protect the potatoes, who will?

Day 6

I planted a trap at the corner of the field where the footprints keep appearing. It was hot and tiring work, and the farmer’s daughter brought me another glass of milk. “I guess all you have is milk,” I said, in what I hoped was a pointed way, but she did not seem to understand what I was getting at. “Yes,” she said. “We have lots of milk, thank heaven.”

“Good,” I said, but I did not really think it was good.

Day 7

Last night there was a frost. I am glad the potatoes are sleeping sound and warm below a blanket of two inches of soil. I went to check the trap at the edge of the field. There was something in it, a boot. The boot was bigger than mine, but not by much. I followed the tracks as far as they went, to the edge of the woods. I should mention that there are woods here in Virginia, where I guard potatoes. That must be where the potato raiders come from.

“Did you catch him?” the farmer’s daughter asked, at midday.

“No,” I said. “But be on the lookout for someone with a very muddy sock.” I took a sip of the milk she had brought.

I bet the raider comes back tonight. You can’t get far with one boot. Not here in the potato fields of Virginia. I reset the trap and put the boot next to it. As bait.

Day 8

No movement at the trap. But there are footprints at the edge of the field. New ones, with sneaker treads. This potato raider must own multiple sets of footwear, which complicates matters a little.

I got a call from an old friend from potato guardian training. He washed out; people were always taking potatoes from under his nose, and he was a laughingstock among us. Now he works in finance. He asked if I had heard the news about the governor and what he was planning to do. I said I hadn’t, so he told me. I can’t believe the governor would come for our Second Amendment rights. No potato will be safe then. It’s monstrous.

The farmer’s daughter brought me my milk right after this conversation, but I told her in a forbidding tone that I was not thirsty.

Day 9

A small success! I spent an uneasy night after the news about the governor, tossing and turning at the edge of the field of my precious charges. Toward dawn, I saw a shadowy figure prowling at the edge of the field. I got up, and he did not see me creep toward him. I leaped at him and caught him by the leg. As we tussled, several potatoes fell out of his jacket. Jacket potatoes. He wriggled his foot free of his boot and ran away. Now I have two boots. I do not know what his footwear situation is; it seems complicated.

I was very glad to have my Second Amendment rights, although, come to think of it, I did not use my carbine at all in this encounter.

Then I woke up. I am bewildered. Was it all a dream, or did I catch a potato raider, however briefly? I went to look for the boot, but there was nothing there.

Day 10

I am still unsure what is reality and what is dream. The potatoes will slumber another two months, but I cannot rest. The farmer’s daughter did not bring me any milk today. Instead her father came out to my corner of the field and said that I had to get off his property and that there was no such thing as a potato guardian.

“Don’t be like that, Cyrus!” I said. “The president knows about me. I am for sure a real thing that exists.”

He said his name wasn’t Cyrus and I had to get away from there. I packed up my things and slung my carbine over my shoulder. I said goodbye to the potatoes and set off.

Day 11

When I was almost to the Maryland border, I received a call from Cyrus. During the night, someone took all the potatoes. Cyrus was sobbing so hard I could scarcely make out his words.

“I should not have doubted you,” he said. “You are real, and the need for you is real, and the need for protecting your Second Amendment rights is the realest of all.” I could tell that all the starch had gone out of him. “I will be sure to write to my governor at once! Please, come back, and guard the new crop.”

“I would like that, Cyrus,” I said. “But I go where the potato calls.” And I continued over the border toward another state, with a new motto. Live Frite or Die. The spuds needed me, and I could not look back.

Keep The Bloomin’ Churches Closed!

Libraries aren’t open, schools aren’t open, and for good reason.  We are still in the midst of a raging pandemic that is taking more than one thousand lives each day, there is more that is not known about the ways in which the coronavirus is transmitted than is known, there has been no slowdown of new cases, there is no cure as yet … so why should we rush to re-open non-essential services?  However, in light of the fact that polls show Trump is losing favourability among religious groups, he has decided to appease them by demanding that all churches open immediately … today!

Now, a wise man might have looked inward to determine just why his support is waning and try to make some adjustments in his actions, but nobody ever accused Trump of being a wise man, and his ego is such that he can never admit anything might actually be his own fault.  So, his statement on the churches opening was …

“Today I am identifying houses of worship — churches, synagogue and mosques — as essential places that provide essential services. Some governors have deemed liquor stores and abortion clinics as essential but have left out churches and other houses of worship. It’s not right.  I call upon governors to allow our churches and places of worship to open right now. If there’s any question, they’re going to have to call me, but they’re not going to be successful in that call. The governors need to do the right thing and allow these very important, essential places of faith to open right now. For this weekend. If they do not do it, I will override the governors.”

Well good luck with that, Donnie.  You cannot force the governors to call for opening the churches, and you cannot force the churches to open, nor can you force people to attend.  The sensible in this nation are not yet ready to get back to “business as usual”, and I think that while some evangelical churches may be packed to the rafters, most more moderate churches will either remain closed or have a small turnout.  Either way … churches are not essential.  If churches are essential, then so are libraries and book stores, music stores and shoe stores.

According to the latest polls, Trump has lost 11% favourability among white evangelicals, 12% among white Catholics, and 18% among white protestants. Let’s be brave and ask the question Trump refuses to ask:  Why?  Could it be because these people have lost loved ones due to Trump’s mishandling and bungling response to the initial cases of the coronavirus?  Could it be that these families have suffered losses of loved ones, as well as financial losses that could have been avoided if we had a president in charge?  Could it be that perhaps they have finally tired of hearing Trump point fingers, lay blame, and concoct crazy conspiracy theories when they are looking to him for leadership, and finding none?

So, Trump thinks to throw the religious factions a bone by loudly “demanding” that all churches open immediately.  It would be laughable, if it didn’t pose such a danger to so many.  And then, there’s his hired mouthpiece, Kayleigh McEnany, by any definition a piece of work.  Low on IQ, but high on the things Trump values, such as an anorexic physique, an empty head, and blind loyalty.  It wasn’t bad enough that Trump is so stupid he ‘demanded’ that all churches open this weekend, declaring them “essential”.  But then, McEnany comes along and accuses the media of having some ‘hidden agenda’ in ‘desperately wanting’ churches to remain closed.

“The president will strongly encourage every governor to allow their churches to reopen, and boy, it is interesting to be in a room that desperately wants to seem to see these churches and houses of worship stay closed.”

McEnany-4No mystery there, Ms. McEnany … those of us who want to see churches remain closed do so because we want to see people remain alive.  No hidden agenda, no attempt to steal people’s right to freedom of religion … just a desire to protect them from themselves.  Churches are a perfect breeding ground for germs to spread like wildfire.  People sitting practically atop one another, singing, clasping hands, giving hugs.  For example, one person in California who, not knowing he had the virus, attended a Mother’s Day church service and exposed 180 other people in that short one-hour service.

I must admit that my jaw dropped to the floor when I read that, coming under fire for her support of Trump in this issue, McEnany said …

“I know the person I am. I know what I stand for. And I stand as a Christian woman, someone who believes in equality and truth and loyalty and honesty. It’s the values I’ve lived by my whole life. It’s the values I’ll continue to live by.”

Seriously???  She’s working for the wrong person if that were the truth, but in my book, she is a bit confused about what constitutes “truth and honesty”.

We are living through a pandemic, a disaster on a large scale where some people don’t even have food to eat, some people are losing their homes for they cannot pay their mortgage, and some people are near suicidal because they are old and no longer recognize the world as the one they once knew.  By the end of this holiday weekend, the total deaths in the U.S. from the coronavirus will number over 100,000.  Think about that one … it’s not just a statistic, not just a number … those were real people, mothers, fathers, children, grandparents, spouses … they died alone, and now their families are left with an empty place at the dinner table and an empty hole in their hearts.  We are living in a country where the number of human lives lost each day to the coronavirus number over a thousand.  Every day!  Yet, Donald Trump and Kayleigh McEnany are so worried about Trump’s polls that they are willing to double or even triple the number of people who have died.

There Is NO Smoking Gun …

It seems there’s a new conspiracy theory making the rounds, and while I typically try to ignore them, this one seems to have a few of my own readers despairing over Joe Biden’s chances to beat the face of evil in November, so I felt I must address it.

Earlier this week, Ukrainian lawmaker Andriy Derkach released edited fragments of recordings of phone conversations between Joe Biden and then-Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko that took place in 2015.  In the calls, Biden can be heard saying that the United States will withhold $1 billion in promised aid until Ukraine replaces its then-Prosecutor General Viktor Shokin. True enough, and Biden himself revealed that conversation during a talk at the Council on Foreign Relations in January 2018.  The rumour, however, is that the threat to withhold aid was somehow tied to Burisma Holdings, where Biden’s son Hunter was employed.  Not true.  In the calls, Burisma is never once even mentioned, nor is Hunter Biden.  The aid was being held contingent on the replacement of the Prosecutor General because at the time, both the U.S. and Western European governments were trying to push the Ukraine to combat malfeasance (including the firing of corrupt officials).  At the time Biden and Poroshenko spoke, Ukrainian activists were taking to the streets to accuse the prosecutor general of neglecting his duty to prosecute corrupt officials and business figures.  Once again, these conversations had nothing to do with Hunter Biden or Burisma.  Nothing.

Now, it should be noted that Andriy Derkach is the son of a Soviet-era KGB officer, is a graduate of the KGB academy in Moscow and has ties to the Russian intelligence services.  I would remind you that our own intelligence services have warned that they have evidence that Russia is meddling in our November election and has been since at least sometime last year.  Evidence.  Facts.  Is this yet another attempt on the part of Putin and his band of thugs to keep Trump, his puppet, in office?  I believe so, especially in light of the fact that Russian state-controlled media outlet RT has actively promoted the rumour.

The rumours of wrongdoing on the part of Hunter and/or Joe Biden have been thoroughly investigated and no evidence of any wrongdoing was found.  PUT IT TO BED, people!  There is no smoking gun.  The only conspiracy here is that of Russian President Vladimir Putin and U.S. President Donald Trump who, fully realizing that Trump stands little or no chance at winning the November election honestly, have set out to defraud the American people, to convince them that they are seeing shadows where there are none, and to steal the election from a man who might restore the democratic principles that have been shredded over the past three-and-a-half years.

Joe Biden may not be the most exciting candidate you’ve ever seen, but he is a solid candidate with no skeletons that I’m aware of in his closet.  He’s not a showman, like Trump is.  He doesn’t screech and yell, doesn’t demand denigrating chants from his audience, doesn’t threaten his naysayers, doesn’t contort his face to look like the phantom of the opera.  He is soft-spoken, yet intelligent and if you take the time to listen to him … really listen with an open mind … you will find he has good ideas, moderate ideas that may actually lead to compromise between Democrats and Republicans.  But, if voters sit on their fannies in November, saying that it doesn’t matter, then we’ll never know what Joe Biden might have accomplished for the people of this nation.

Now let me tell you what I think will happen if Trump is awarded another four-year term.  Some will say that if we can vote a Democratic majority into both the House and the Senate, he will be unable to continue on his present path of destruction, for just as the Republicans rendered Obama largely a lame duck for the last term of his presidency, the democrats would do the same for Trump.  But no, there’s a difference, a monumental difference … two of them, actually.  First, President Obama played (mostly) by the rules and though no doubt he was often highly frustrated at his ability to accomplish certain things, he respected the U.S. Constitution.  Donald Trump does not.  Second, during President Obama’s tenure in office, the Supreme Court leaned toward the left, especially after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia.  With the retirement of Justice Kennedy, and the appointments of Gorsuch and Kavanaugh, the court, as we have seen in recent months, now leans largely toward … Trump.

I think that, emboldened by being handed a second term, though I fully expect him to lose the popular vote again, he will override Congress and impose his will via such machinations as executive orders, declaring a state of emergency, and along with his cadre of lawyers, taking anything he cannot accomplish otherwise, to the Supreme Court.  I believe he will further shred the principles laid forth in the Constitution and that by the next scheduled election in 2024, we will live under a full-fledged autocracy.

We are on a fast track to becoming a banana republic, some would say we already are.  The foundations of democracy that have held up well for 233 years are crumbling under the weight of Trump and his band of thugs.  He has fired Inspectors General who were tasked with keeping the administration honest.  He has filled his cabinet with people whose only qualification for the job is their oath of fealty to Donald Trump, not We the People.  Who will take a stand against him for the next four years?  I believe that chaos would reign, but that at the end of the day, he would be nearer a king than a president.

I cannot stress just how important it is that we remove Trump from office.  Already he has done damage to this nation, to our alliances, and to our reputation, some of which will take many decades to repair, and some of which will forevermore be a dark cloud over this nation and its people.  Please, my friends, do not let the rumours spread by Republican groups and Russian trolls cause you to lose your faith in Joe Biden.  This is just what Trump and the Republican Party are hoping … that we will become discouraged and let our guard down.  Joe Biden will be a solid leader, he will abide by the U.S. Constitution, and he will make a start at restoring the principles set forth in 1787 by the likes of John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, James Madison and the rest of the Founding Fathers.