183 Days …

183 days.  That’s how many more days Donald Trump has to complete his destruction of the United States.  183 days until January 20th, 2021, the day of Joe Biden’s inauguration.  Can we withstand the onslaught that is increasing in cruelty and utter stupidity?  Can we retain a shred of our sanity for another 183 days?  The answer, my friends, is blowing in the wind … the answer is blowing in the wind.

There is so much on which I could opine today, but I’ll keep it to a couple.


Relief for whom?

First … Trump insists that the coronavirus relief bill currently under construction in Congress must have two things, else he will veto it:  a payroll tax cut, and measures tying school funding to the reopening of classrooms.  A payroll tax cut???  Who will that help?  I’ll tell you who it will help … employers!  Large corporations will benefit the most.  You, the average worker, will benefit only slightly, and those who are currently unemployed will not benefit by so much as a single penny!  Additionally, the tax cut would be only a deferral, meaning that taxpayers will ultimately be held responsible for repaying whatever money they save this year.  Think about the unemployed worker who does not benefit but is employed when payback time comes and must repay what he never received!  And, at the end of the day, there’s that pesky little fact that the U.S. is so far in debt that there is no chance in hell of us pulling out of it in our lifetime, and this will further decrease revenue.

As for tying school funding to the reopening of physical classrooms … bullshit!  In essence, Trump is saying point blank that the children of this nation must become the sacrificial lambs in order to boost his re-election chances.  Period.  I sincerely hope that every school district in this nation remains closed for the safety and lives of our children.  Short of that, I hope that every parent gives Trump a middle finger and has the courage to refuse to send their children, that every teacher refuses to teach, and that every bus driver refuses to drive. Already in Florida, one teacher’s union is suing Governor DeSantis and Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran for an order insisting that all schools must be open five days every week.  Florida is in the throes of one of the worst surges of the virus in the nation … in the world … yet the children will be sacrificed so DeSantis can bow to Trump’s demands.

Even the republicans in Congress are against both of these measures, yet I am told that they will likely include them in the bill, just to keep Trump from vetoing it.  There is, of course, another option … write the bill with We the People in mind, leave out Trump’s bloody ‘demands’, and pass it with a veto-proof 2/3 majority in both the House and the Senate.  C’mon, republicans … find your damn cojones and do what’s right for a change, instead of what Trump wants.  Just once, remember your oath of office!  You let us down on February 5th … don’t let us down again!


Resumption of b.s.

Remember those almost completely useless briefings Trump held on a daily basis for a time, ‘til he got bored with the coronavirus and fed up with his experts giving advice he didn’t like?  Surely you remember him saying he thought that injecting household disinfectant into the human body would cure the virus?  Well, I said all along they turned into naught but a campaign rally for him, for he spent much more time patting himself on the back and lying about what a great job he had done than anybody spent actually talking about the virus.  They were basically useless, a waste of time, and most of us were relieved when he stopped them.  Well, they’re coming back starting today.

Why?  Because his poll numbers are dropping … have dropped … Biden is leading him by a fairly healthy margin, and he can’t get out and hold the big rallies that have been his trademark.  Tulsa was proof that people actually care more about surviving than paying homage to Donald Trump, and some states are refusing to allow him to hold rallies at this time.  So, what better way to get his campaign message across than a daily briefing covered ad nauseam by every major news outlet?  He’s already said he doesn’t care about the virus, about the surge in cases … and deaths … that he believes the virus will just disappear on its own someday.  So it isn’t about that … it is only about Trump and his re-election campaign.  I wish there were some hope that the mainstream media would boycott his daily briefings, but they won’t … they are as intimidated by him as his staff are.  You and I may boycott them, but others, notably his fan base, will sit in front of their televisions drooling for the hour or two he spends rambling on about himself.  Bah humbug!

Rumour has it that his staff tried to dissuade him, likely realizing that every time he opens his mouth he digs his own grave a little bit more with the sane people in this nation, but his lead bimbo, Kellyanne Conway, said …

“I just think the people want to hear from the president of the United States.”

WRONG, Kellyanne … dead wrong.  We the People want to hear less from Donald Trump … in fact, if he never opened his mouth again, I’d be happy.


Well … I still haven’t talked about Trump’s threat to essentially declare martial law in cities across the nation … only the ones “run by liberal democrats”, as he tells it.  And I still haven’t covered the de-funding of the CDC and reduction of funding for testing, and the plan for Trump to replace Justice Ginsburg … while she’s still on the bench! But, it’s late and I’ve ranted enough for now, so those will wait until later.

toon

Ignorance Is NOT Bliss!!!

From Columbus, Ohio …maskless

It appears that there is a side effect of the coronavirus that affects only those who do not contract the virus itself … it isn’t a new disease, but rather one that has surged over the past five months: Ignorance.  And note that the leader of the ignorance that has a chokehold on our country is this ‘man’ …

TrumpNow, before I begin my tirade, let me clue you in on something.  When you read that “The White House says …” or “The administration has decided …”, please understand that both “White House” and “administration” mean only one person, Donald Trump.  The White House is actually just a brick and mortar building that has no voice, no opinion, and ‘the administration’ consists of a bunch of mouthpieces who speak only when told by Donald Trump that they may speak, and what they may say.  All orders filter down from Trump himself, for he is the de facto dictator.

The headline in The Washington Post reads …

Trump administration pushing to block new money for testing, tracing and CDC in upcoming coronavirus relief bill

Think about this one, folks.  Trump does not want to spend money … OUR money … for testing or to support methods of controlling the coronavirus.  OUR MONEY … OUR LIVES!!!  He, King Donnie, would prefer to spend OUR money on such things as his golf outings and trips to Mar-a-Lago, Secret Service protection for his grown children as they jet-set ‘round the world on Trump Organization business, than on saving our bloomin’ lives!!!!

A month or so ago, Trump & Pence decided that the threat of the pandemic was over, and it was time to move on with “business as usual”.  After all … there is an election in just over 100 days and … well, let’s face it, the only thing Trump had in his favour was the economy, so he has to do whatever it takes, including taking our lives and the lives of our children, to boost the economy so that he can show his base what a “wonderful job” he is doing.

Trump has said more than once that if we didn’t do so much testing, we wouldn’t have so many new cases of the coronavirus.  In his utter ignorance and inability to comprehend, he seems to honestly believe that theory and is, thus, trying to slow or even halt the testing by cutting off funding.

“Think of this, if we didn’t do testing, instead of testing over 40 million people, if we did half the testing we would have half the cases. If we did another, you cut that in half, we would have, yet again, half of that. But the headlines are always testing.”

This ludicrous thinking is analogous with saying, “If I don’t get on the scale, I won’t have gained any weight.”  Or, “If I don’t take my child who is coughing and has a fever to the doctor, he won’t be sick.”  It is utter stupidity!

That he is trying to cut off funding for testing and the CDC, is an abomination and must be stopped, but even worse is that his followers have contracted his disease and are clamoring for schools to re-open as if nothing were amiss … business as usual … nothing to see here, folks!

maskless-2maskless-4maskless-5maskless-6

The people in the pictures above are perfectly willing to subject not only their own children, but all children in this country, all teachers, parents, grandparents, friends, family members … to sickness and potential death.  WHY???  Because they are in the throes of this disease called ignorance, because Donald Trump, the chief of the Ignorant Brigade, has told them it’ll be fine, and that by sending their kids back to school, they can themselves return to work and the economy will boom almost overnight.  To me, this is criminal negligence.

I’m seriously considering setting up a website to see how many times I can sell the Brooklyn Bridge to these people!!!

I don’t care if you space kids 6 feet apart in the classroom and mandate mask-wearing … kids will be kids and you aren’t going to be able to enforce any of it, especially with younger children.  Plus, they will be touching surfaces that other kids have touched, both contracting and spreading germs.  It isn’t rocket science, folks … it is plain ol’ everyday common sense!!!  Keep the kids home.  If we don’t, I guarantee you that teachers in many areas will strike, and sensible parents who care about their kids will keep them home anyway.

grim-reaper

And not that it matters much to me at this moment, but the damned economy isn’t going to re-bound overnight anyway!  There is absolutely nothing that is going to restore the economy to its pre-pandemic state in short order … it is going to take a long time.  Period.  And it isn’t going to happen while we are seeing between 50,000 – 75,000 new cases of the coronavirus per day and nearly 1,000 people are dying from it on a daily basis.

The question, then, becomes how do we fight this pandemic of ignorance, how do we convince people that their lives and the lives of their children and other family members are, in fact, at risk?  We better find a way soon, for this nation cannot maintain this status quo much longer.  We are in self-destruct mode.  I have no answers, but I sure hope somebody comes up with some soon!

breathless-end-of-rant  End of Rant.

More Tears Of Shame

A drug called remdesivir is the first drug approved by licensing authorities in the US to treat the coronavirus, and has been shown to help people recover faster from the disease.  Production of the drug, manufactured by pharmaceutical company Gilead, will take time, of course.  It will take even longer for the people in the EU, UK, Brazil, Italy, and other countries to get the drug … at least three months.  WHY?  Because Donald Trump has greedily hogged every dose the company will make for July, and 90% of what they will manufacture in August and September, leaving virtually none for any other nation!

Alex Azar, head of the Department of Health and Human Services had this to say …

“… Trump has struck an amazing deal to ensure Americans have access to the first authorised therapeutic for Covid-19. To the extent possible, we want to ensure that any American patient who needs remdesivir can get it. The Trump administration is doing everything in our power to learn more about life-saving therapeutics for Covid-19 and secure access to these options for the American people.”

BULLSHIT!

The “American people”???  What about the rest of the people in the world???  The people in the U.S. are no better, no more deserving than those in France, Ghana, or Brazil!!!  What Trump has done is to doom people all around the globe in order to gain accolades from the people of this country to boost his own chances at re-election.  Plain and simple … he doesn’t care about people – any people – but is only thinking of himself and his bid for re-election!  And no doubt there are some in this country who will vote for him simply because of this.

The United States, though having just over 4% of the world’s population, has nearly 26% of the total cases worldwide and 25% of the deaths from coronavirus worldwide.  That is largely a result of Trump’s bungling ever since the first cases of the virus hit the U.S. in January, his attempt to pretend that nothing was wrong, that the coronavirus was no more than the common cold, and that it would simply disappear overnight.  It is also a result of the arrogance of the people of this nation who refused to take proper precautions, and who even now are so eager to return to “having fun” that they are putting us all at risk.

However, simply because Trump screwed up, and just because the people of this nation aren’t too bright sometimes, is no reason for us to scoop up every dose of a medication that can help people!!!  We are no better … let me repeat that … WE ARE NO BETTER … than any person in any other country, and we are damn sure no more deserving of this drug than our friends in the UK or Germany!

Donald Trump has done a lot of truly horrible things in his 3+ year tenure, but this is by far the very worst thing he has done.

The drug, remdesivir, is under patent to Gilead, which means no other company can make it.  Experts are alarmed both by the US unilateral action on remdesivir and the wider implications, for instance in the event of a vaccine becoming available. The Trump administration has already shown that it is prepared to outbid and outmaneuver all other countries to secure the medical supplies it needs for the US.  This is all part of Trump’s “America First” ideology, but let me tell you … this is, whether some like it or not, a much larger world than “America”, and the people in this country are no more deserving than the people in any other country!

I can tell you that if by some chance I were to contract the coronavirus, I would refuse the drug remdesivir … I would tell the doctors to send my dose to the UK or Brazil.  I would rather die honestly than know that I had taken a drug, and in so doing deprived someone else of their life.

I am more ashamed today of this nation than I ever have been before.  I feel that each and every one of us owes a huge apology to the people in every other nation on the globe.  I hang my head in shame for what this country has done, for the horrible way in which we have treated our friends and allies.

This “JOKE” Is Not Funny

A pandemic, the likes of which we’ve never seen in our lifetimes, began taking lives the first month of this year.  By March, it had spread to nearly every country in the Western world, including the U.S., but Trump said there were only 15 cases and they would be gone by April … not to worry.  Now, the U.S. has logged over 122,000 deaths and is at almost 2.4 million reported cases.  In mid-March, non-essential businesses were ordered to shut down in nearly every state.  Then in May, despite nearly 1,000 deaths each and every day, Trump demanded that states start opening everything back up … ‘his’ economy was tanking and … there was an election coming up, y’know.  So, states began to comply with his wishes, at varying paces.  The people, tired of staying home for two months, were antsy and protests began to arise.  They wanted their bars, their restaurants, their movie theaters back!  Never mind that more people would die as a result.  The experts predicted that we were opening too much way too soon, they predicted cases would rise, they predicted businesses would be forced to close again.  Guess what, folks?  It doesn’t even take a rocket scientist to figure it out … the experts were right.  Duh.

“Citing a spike in coronavirus cases, particularly among young people who had visited Boise bars early this month, Idaho health officials on Monday reinstated some restrictions in Ada County, the state’s most populous jurisdiction.”The Washington Post, 22 June 2020

“Recent days have marked a major turning point for the state [Florida], where Gov. Ron DeSantis — a Republican loyal to President Donald Trump — confirmed that the number of new cases had been rising because of a surge in cases, not because of increased testing. Florida on Monday confirmed it had recorded 100,000 positive test results for Covid-19 since the pandemic began.”Politico, 22 June 2020

Florida recently recorded more than 4,000 new cases in a single day!  Mayors and governors around the country are vowing stricter regulations, and it’s my best guess that in the coming weeks, some states will re-instate ‘stay at home’ orders and the shuttering of businesses.  And it is at this juncture that Donald Trump held a rally in Tulsa, Oklahoma — a city where the number of cases had spiked this month, and he said …

“When you do testing to that extent, you’re going to find more people, you’re going to find more cases. So I said to my people, ‘Slow the testing down, please.’”

Of course … the numbers on the rise as they have been do not bode well for his approval rating, given that he wasted three months blowing it off, calling it a ‘democratic hoax’.  But this … to slow down on testing because it is turning up more cases and makes him look bad???  WTF???  Now, the White House spokespeople likely went apeshit when they heard him say this and immediately claimed that of course he was joking.  Trump himself later claimed it was a joke.  Let me tell you something, people … a pandemic that has cost well over 100,000 lives in this country, and nearly half a million globally is NOT A JOKING MATTER!!!  If he can crack jokes with more than 2.3 million total cases, 1.3 million still considered active, and hundreds of people in this country dying every single day, then he cannot possibly be considered the ‘leader’ of this nation.  Only a cruel autocrat could mock the deaths of so many.

And today, Trump will be endangering more of those lives he so carelessly jokes about, when he holds yet another rally, this time in a church in Phoenix, Arizona.  Fortunately, the capacity of the church is only 3,000, so if the ratio of his last rally holds true, only about 1,000 will show up.  The pastor of the church, one Luke Barnett, claims that the church has an air-purification system that purportedly kills “99.9 percent of covid within 10 minutes”.  Only thing is … it can’t.  It cannot kill even 1% of the coronavirus germs in 10 hours.  Both the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have refuted the pastor’s claim, saying that no such system can kill the coronavirus.  Period.

I wonder what he’ll find to joke about today?  Perhaps he could do an off-the-cuff about the ballooning suicide rate in the U.S.?  Or perhaps he’ll find humour in the latest mass shooting in North Carolina that left 2 dead and 7 wounded?  There is something seriously wrong with a person who can joke about loss of life.  Seriously wrong.  I don’t want my life in his hands.

Just A Few Mini Rants …

I have just about had enough … enough of Donald Trump … enough of this country.  What follows are my thoughts today, as life under a regime filled with hatred, corruption, and gross incompetence colour my thoughts.


Rallying to the cause … whatever the cause is

BOZOsIf only these people could view themselves through my lens … BOZOs!  Losers!  Crazy people!  Not a single mask in sight, ugly clothes, rolls of fat, tongues lolling out … oh my!  I would laugh … actually did laugh … ‘til I realized that these are … voters.  Ugh.  These are the bloody fools who have set fire to our Constitution and signed on to murder the nation once known as the ‘United’ States of America.

Never mind, I suppose, that Tulsa has seen a spike this month in coronavirus cases, and never mind that at least six of Trump’s campaign staff have tested positive for the virus …Tulsa-coronavirus

And never mind that much of the nation is still celebrating Juneteenth and the National Guard has even been called in to try to keep peace in the threat of protests against the nation’s top racist performing at the BOK Center yesterday evening.

nationalguard-2

Initially, Trump was planning to speak to the fools outside before his rally in the BOK Center, but the outside speech was canceled yesterday afternoon, as Trump’s courage fled 🐔 when he heard about all the protestors waiting outside.

Any expense to We the People in order to humour Trump and his rabid base.  All I’ve got to say is that anyone foolish enough to turn out for that rally deserves whatever comes to them.  That includes Trump and his entourage.  Party on, you gun-lovin’ fools!


A win for We the People …

cover of John Bolton's bookJudge Royce Lamberth struck down Trump’s request to stop the presses on former National Security Advisor John Bolton’s book, The Room Where It Happened.  The judge did state that Bolton was wrong to have skipped the governmental review process, but said that since hundreds of thousands of copies of the book have already shipped, to order an injunction against its release on Tuesday would be meaningless.

Trump, who loves to call everyone else a ‘loser’, couldn’t bring himself to apply that term to himself, so he claimed a win … somehow … in that convoluted little mind of his.  He tweeted …

“BIG COURT WIN against Bolton. Obviously, with the book already given out and leaked to many people and the media, nothing the highly respected Judge could have done about stopping it…BUT, strong & powerful statements & rulings on MONEY & on BREAKING CLASSIFICATION were made…. ….Bolton broke the law and has been called out and rebuked for so doing, with a really big price to pay. He likes dropping bombs on people, and killing them. Now he will have bombs dropped on him!”

Sure, Donnie … whatever you say.  Bwah ha ha … We the People are the real winners, for we can see just what you were up to that violated the Constitution and the public trust.  No doubt, we will not soon forget what we read … at least not before November 3rd!


WTF???  Did he fire him … or didn’t he???

I wrote yesterday about Geoffrey Berman, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York (SDNY) who said he had definitely not resigned, after Attorney General William Barr announced in a press release that he had, in fact announced his resignation.  Well, it was only a matter of time until Trump fired Berman, and that time frame was only hours.  This morning, true to form, Trump fired the man who was investigating him, as well as some of his cronies.  In a terse statement, Barr the Toadie said …

“Because you have declared that you have no intention of resigning, I have asked the president to remove you as of today, and he has done so.”

But there’s a plot twist here … as he was leaving the White House for his rally in Tulsa, Trump told reporters Barr was in charge of the issue and said:

“That’s all up to the attorney general. Attorney General Barr is working on that. That’s his department, not my department. But we have a very capable attorney general, so that’s really up to him. I’m not involved.”

BULLSHIT.  He’s involved up to his neck in alligators.  It was Trump and his cronies that Berman was investigating, not Barr!  Barr is following orders, though as clumsily as a rabbit trying to play baseball.

What is next in this saga is anybody’s guess, but interestingly, when Barr first announced, erroneously, that Berman had resigned on Friday night, he claimed that Craig Carpenito, the U.S. Attorney in New Jersey, would fill the shoes as an interim replacement until Trump’s pick, Jay Clayton, could be confirmed by the Senate.  But today, when Barr announced that Trump had fired Berman, he said that Audrey Strauss, deputy U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, would serve in the interim.  One must ask the question:  Do either Trump or Barr have the slightest clue WHAT THE SAM HELL they are doing???

We haven’t heard the end of this one, my friends … at least I hope not.  I hope our attention span isn’t so short that by Monday morning this abomination has been lost in the wake of other news.


WHY???

This week, the Supreme Court ruled to uphold the program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) that allows those who were brought to this country as children to receive a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation and become eligible for a work permits, among other things.  It was the right thing to do, as I have stated in earlier posts.  However, Trump is determined to renew his effort to end legal protections for hundreds of thousands who fall under this ruling.

The burning question I have is … WHY???  Why the Sam Hell is he so bent on hurting people who have done nothing but add value to our nation?  Is it because his evangelical base think that lily white skin is the only sort worthy of life?  WHAT have any of the immigrants ever done to Trump???  Have they cost him money?  A night’s sleep?  A meal?  I think not.  They have done not one damn thing to the bastard!

Yes, I am furious.  Trump would send these young people into an uncertain future, in a country they do not know, with no friends or family … and FOR WHAT???  Because he is a bastard.  No other explanation for it.


And on that note … I bid you adieu … until later.

Freedom of Speech??? Give Me The BOOK!!!

Oh no no no no no no no no no!!!!  Just NO! The headline reads …

Trump Administration Sues to Try to Delay Publication of Bolton’s Book

Has the United States Department of Justice ever heard of the First Amendment?  Have they heard of the Right to Free Speech?  Have they heard the term “Freedom of the Press”???  William Barr is a @#$% son of a bitch, and Donald Trump is unspeakably worse!

The story, according to the New York Times

The Trump administration sued the former national security adviser John R. Bolton on Tuesday to try to delay publication of his highly anticipated memoir about his time in the White House, saying the book contained classified information that would compromise national security if it became public.

The book, “The Room Where It Happened,” is set for release on June 23. Administration officials have repeatedly warned Mr. Bolton against publishing it.

Mr. Bolton made clear in a statement this week that his book contained explosive details about his time at the White House. He and Mr. Trump clashed on significant policy issues like Iran, North Korea and Afghanistan, and in his book, Mr. Bolton also confirmed accusations at the heart of the Democratic impeachment case over the president’s dealings with Ukraine, according to details from his manuscript previously reported by The New York Times.

First, it is highly doubtful that John Bolton is stupid enough to include any “classified information that would compromise national security” in his book.  And even if he did … remember that Donald Trump himself did that exact thing on numerous occasions:

  • Trump discussed classified information provided by a U.S. ally regarding a planned Islamic State operation during an Oval Office meeting on May 10, 2017 with the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov and the Russian Ambassador Sergey Kislyak, providing sufficient details that could be used by the Russians to deduce the identity of the ally and the manner in which it was collected.

  • In an April 29, 2017, phone call, Trump told Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte that the U.S. had positioned two nuclear submarines off the coast of North Korea. This was during a time when Trump was warning of a possible “major, major conflict” with North Korea. The locations of nuclear submarines are a closely guarded secret, even from the Navy command itself.

  • On May 24, 2017, Britain strongly objected to the United States leaking to the press information about the Manchester Arena bombing, including the identity of the attacker and a picture of the bomb, before it had been publicly disclosed, jeopardizing the investigation. British Prime Minister Theresa May issued a public rebuke, and British police said they would stop passing information to U.S. counterparts.

  • In July 2017, after a private meeting with Russian president Vladimir Putin at the 2017 G20 Hamburg summit, Trump took the unusual step of confiscating and keeping his interpreter’s notes. This led U.S. intelligence officials to express concern that Trump “may have improperly discussed classified intelligence with Russia.”

  • On August 30, 2019, Trump tweeted a reportedly classified image of recent damage to an Iranian missile site that supposedly occurred as a result of an explosion during testing. Multiple concerns were raised regarding the public release of what appeared to be a surveillance photo with exceptionally high resolution, revealing highly classified U.S. surveillance capabilities.

I’m sure there are more, but these are the ones I’m aware of.  And frankly, the only thing that is likely to be ‘compromised’ by the release of this book is Donald Trump’s reputation, and that is already in the sewer.  Every person in this nation is paying for this government … we have the right to know what the ‘leaders’ are doing!

John Bolton has written a book about his time in the Trump administration.  According to the synopsis on Amazon …

cover of John Bolton's bookWhat Bolton saw astonished him: a President for whom getting reelected was the only thing that mattered, even if it meant endangering or weakening the nation. “I am hard-pressed to identify any significant Trump decision during my tenure that wasn’t driven by reelection calculations,” he writes.

He shows a President addicted to chaos, who embraced our enemies and spurned our friends, and was deeply suspicious of his own government.

“The differences between this presidency and previous ones I had served were stunning,” writes Bolton, who worked for Reagan, Bush 41, and Bush 43. He discovered a President who thought foreign policy is like closing a real estate deal—about personal relationships, made-for-TV showmanship, and advancing his own interests. As a result, the US lost an opportunity to confront its deepening threats, and in cases like China, Russia, Iran, and North Korea ended up in a more vulnerable place.

The reality is that it’s doubtful Trump & Co can stop the book’s release on Tuesday, and even if they did … the cat is already out of the bag.  On Sunday, ABC News will air an interview between Bolton and Martha Radditz that will provide wide insight into the book.  And, enough has been leaked already, such as these key points listed in The Guardian:

  • Trump pleaded with China to help win the 2020 election
  • Trump suggested he was open to serving more than two terms
  • Trump offered favors to dictators
  • Trump praised Xi for China’s internment camps
  • Trump defended Saudi Arabia to distract from a story about Ivanka
  • Trump’s top staff mocked him behind his back
  • Trump thought Finland was part of Russia
  • Trump thought it would be ‘cool’ to invade Venezuela

None of these should surprise us, given all that we’ve seen and heard over the past 3+ years, but nonetheless, these are not things we expect, or should have to tolerate, of the ‘leader’ of our nation.

Make no mistake … I don’t like John Bolton … he is a warmonger, which was precisely why Trump hired him.  But, he worked within the Trump administration for a year-and-a-half, and I’m very interested in what he has to say.  More importantly, we don’t ban books in this country … We the People have a right to read Mr. Bolton’s book, and read it we shall, one way or another.

It Happened Again!!! 🤬

Yet another shooting of an unarmed black man by police, this time in Atlanta, Georgia.  27-year-old Rayshard Brooks had a bit too much to drink on Friday evening, and while waiting in line for food at the Wendy’s drive-thru, he fell asleep in his car, blocking the drive-thru and causing customers to have to drive around the vehicle to pick up their orders.  So … the police were called.  I don’t know why the on-duty manager at Wendy’s couldn’t just go out and see what was wrong that Mr. Brooks’ car wasn’t moving?  I don’t know why the Atlanta police department dispatched armed officers.  But the result is that now Mr. Brooks, father of four young children, is dead, shot by police.

DAMMIT!  There are ways of dealing with situations that do not require shooting and killing!  The police story differs from what was captured on cellphone video, but it appears that Mr. Brooks did resist arrest, but when police deployed a taser, Brooks ran away and then police shot him.  The man had too much to drink and was on foot, had no weapon and was no danger to any other than himself.  Why the f**k did they feel a need to shoot him???

Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms called for the immediate termination of the officer who fired his weapon, and the other officer involved was placed on administrative duty.  The mayor also announced the resignation of Chief Erika Shields, saying …

“There has been a disconnect with what our expectations are and should be as it relates with interactions with our officers and the communities in which they are entrusted to protect. Chief Erika Shields have been a solid member of APD for over two decades and has a deep and abiding love for the people of Atlanta. And because of her desire that Atlanta be a model of what meaningful reform should look like across this country, Chief Shields has offered to immediately step aside as police chief so that the city may move forward with urgency in rebuilding the trust so desperately needed throughout our communities.”

A kind way of saying she asked for the police chief’s resignation.

Predictably and justifiably, protestors came out in droves.  And then … they broke out the windows and set fire to the Wendy’s where Mr. Brooks had fallen asleep.  Sigh.  Now, I fully and completely support protesting the police brutality against black people … if I were younger or had the strength, I would march right along with them.  But … destruction of property is a step too far.  And, it’s counter-productive, for then the police are on edge and likely to be even more trigger-happy than they would otherwise be.

Protestors also completely shut down the interstate connector in Atlanta, I-75/I-85.  As of this writing (Saturday @10:00 p.m.), police are confronting them and lobbing smoke bombs into the crowd.  The likelihood of somebody else being shot and killed before daylight on Sunday is high, in my opinion.  I hope the cops have the good sense to leave their guns holstered!

There are a few situations that call for police to use their guns.  Very few.  Many moons ago, when I lived in Kingsport, Tennessee, I was driving home with two of my children in the car after dark one night.  About a block before reaching home, a fuse blew and my headlights went out.  Since I was almost home, I drove the final block, pulled into my driveway, and saw flashing blue lights behind me.  Okay, I got out of my car and was met by a police officer, holding his gun pointed right at me, telling me to put my hands on top of the car.  Turns out he thought I had seen him and had intentionally cut my lights.  He didn’t shoot me, did check the lights to verify what I told him … meanwhile, my children were petrified, for he kept his gun in hand the whole time.  He didn’t shoot me or the children, likely because I wasn’t black, but … why the damn gun???

It is time for major changes in every police department in this nation, people!  If somebody is shooting up a Wal-Mart, then I fully expect the police to go in with their weapons drawn.  If there is a report of a hostage situation, or a robbery in progress, then yes, I certainly expect the police to go in with their guns drawn.  But you do not shoot a woman asleep in her bed (Breonna Taylor) or a man sleeping in his car!  Perhaps if every Tom, Dick, and Harry in this country didn’t own a gun, the police might feel less inclined to “shoot first, ask questions later”.  Then again, in the case of a black person, perhaps they would.

I don’t pretend to know the solutions, but I know this much … if I had to name the two biggest problems in our society today, they would be racism and guns.  Each in and of itself is bad, but together, they are a combination that is killing this nation … literally.

Your Right To Vote — Going, Going …

I am fuming, so let the reader beware that this is likely to be a rant of Filosophic proportions.


Let’s get one thing straight here, people … WE ARE ALL IN THIS BLOODY MESS TOGETHER!  Democrats, Independents, Republicans, Christians, Jews, Muslims, Atheists, White, Black, Male, Female, Gay, Straight, Young, Old … WE ARE ALL SUFFERING THE SAME DAMN FATE!  What the Sam Hell is so hard about just stepping up to the plate, accepting that we have one hell of a mess on our hands, and working together to find the best way to keep people safe and at the same time, attempt to restore the democratic republic that has been seriously eroded over the past three months … er, years???

Whew … that said …

Why am I angry tonight?  Because, we have an election coming up in exactly 165 days, just over 5 months, and not only Trump, but the majority of the damn Republicans in Congress are doing every single thing they can think of to ensure that the election is dishonest, unfair, and that as many poor, elderly, and minority voters as possible will not be able to vote.  I’m sick of this, people!

Given that the coronavirus will almost certainly still be at pandemic levels, given that there will be no cure, no vaccine that is sufficiently tested to be widely available, and given that there is no reason to believe the number of new cases or the death toll will be dramatically decreased by November, it only makes sense that we go to a system of mail-in voting.  Now, it’s no surprise that the damn fool sitting on his fat arse in the Oval Office is trying his level best to put a stop to the mail-in voting efforts … that’s a given, but some of the people on the far right side of the aisle on Capitol Hill are playing games with not only our taxpayer dollars, but with our very lives and I HAVE HAD ENOUGH!

Former Representative Darrell Issa, who served in the House of Representatives from 2001 – 2019, declining to run in the 2018 election, as he was outclassed and knew it, has filed a lawsuit to attempt to stop California from going to an all-mail voting system in November.  WHY???  Because he, and the conservative group backing him, Judicial Watch, claim that switching to an all-mail voting system is a democratic attempt to “interfere with the election”!  Say WHAT???  Interfering in what way, exactly?  Is it interfering to ensure that ALL eligible voters have the right to vote in a safe manner?

The lawsuit claims that Governor Newsom’s order to allow all-mail voting violates elections provisions of the Constitution and represents an “unlawful attempt to supersede and replace California election law” by creating “an entirely new system” that does not conform with an existing state law, the Voter’s Choice Act, which lays out requirements for counties that wish to mail ballots to all voters.  Make sense of that if you can!

Newsome is running again this year, hoping to win the seat vacated by Duncan Hunter who resigned in January after pleading guilty to campaign finance violations (remember the rabbit?) The lawsuit also charges that Newsom’s order has scrambled Issa’s campaign by compelling him to “reevaluate his electoral strategy” and increasing the cost of running a campaign.  So WHAT???  Get over it, Darrell!  Our lives are more important than your damn campaign costs!

And on top of that, of course, Donald Trump is threatening to withhold federal funds from states that implement mail-in voting, calling it ‘voter fraud’.  Without a shred of evidence, Trump claims …

“I think just common sense would tell you that massive manipulation can take place. And you do have cases of fraudulent ballots where they actually print them and they give them to people to sign, maybe the same person signs them with different writing, different pens. I don’t know. It’s a lot of things can happen.”

voter fraudNever mind that many states, including my own, have had the option for mail-in voting for years and never mind that voter fraud is virtually non-existent in the U.S.  Trump cannot make that decision … well, he can, but it won’t hold water if Congress challenges him.  Will Congress step up to the plate and protect our voting rights?  I don’t know about you, but my level of trust in Congress to protect us against Trump right now is around nil.

Voting in the U.S. is a right, not a privilege, not as Trump claims, an ‘honour’ … it is a right set forth in the U.S. Constitution and one that is not to be infringed on, although in truth the republicans have infringed on it numerous times in past years, with restrictive voter ID laws, gerrymandering and other games intended to disenfranchise those of us likely to vote democratic.  People like Darrell Issa and Donald Trump are attempting to interfere with that constitutional right.  We must stop them!  If you live in the district Issa is running in, California’s 50th district, San Diego County, make sure he knows that you will not vote for him unless he withdraws his lawsuit and shuts the f— up!  The rest of us need to make sure our representatives and senators know this is NOT going to fly!

There are many crucial issues facing the people of the United States today, but I can think of none that are more important than protecting our right to vote … EVERYONE’S right to vote!  If nothing else, all of this should make you more determined than ever before to vote in this year’s election and vote these asses out of Washington!

And to conclude … Seth Meyers takes a more even-toned approach addressing the same topic …

The Solution Is NOT Guns!

Back in 1787, the Founding Fathers drafted a brilliant document that would become known as the Constitution of the United States.  Unfortunately, they also made some mistakes, one that has cost hundreds of thousands, perhaps millions of lives, unnecessarily.  You see, the nation was a fledgling, only a few years past gaining their independence from England after a bloody war that they damn near lost, so the framers of the document were leery that a foreign power might see the nation as vulnerable and try to take it while it was still learning to stand on its own.  So, after ratifying the original document, they added a “Bill of Rights”, the 2nd Amendment of which gave citizens the “right to bear arms”.  This, my friends, was a lethal mistake, one that every one of us have paid for in one way or another.

Now, the Founders figured the best way to protect the nation from foreign interference was to maintain a militia … everyday men … farmers, shopkeepers, etc., who could grab their rifle or musket and march off to defend and protect the nation if the need arose.  Thus they wrote the Second Amendment:

“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”

That’s it, folks, the entire text, all 27 words of it.  Sadly, though, the Founders only familiarity with ‘arms’ were muskets and such … never in their wildest dreams could they have imagined AR-15s and AK-47s, weapons that can mow down hundreds of people in less time than it took me to write this sentence.  And because of that lack of foresight, the U.S. Supreme Court has been trying ever since to define just what ‘arms’ are to be protected and to what extent.

Unfortunately, long ago common sense flew out the door of the Supreme Court and Congress when the word ‘gun’ is mentioned, and the elements that have determined the ‘law’, such as it is, are those with a vested interest in the weapons industry.  Public safety is entirely overlooked in the debate over guns.  The only consideration is … $$$$$$$$$$$$$$.  I won’t bore you with the lengthy list of cases that have first teetered, then tottered, back and forth, regarding what, if any, regulations should be placed on who can own a gun, how many, what type, etc., but suffice it to say that the U.S. is the only nation on the globe where a person’s right to own a gun is more protected than his right to drive a car.

And as a result …

One week ago yesterday, on May 9th, a sunny afternoon in the small town of Griffin, Georgia, a 12-year-old boy was killed … shot dead by his 5-year-old brother who found a gun that had been tossed into the bushes the day before by three men eluding the police during a chase.  According to neighbor Tom Whitehead …

“The little one found a gun, had to be right here… somewhere in these bushes he walked over here, found a gun. Turns around. Thinks he’s playing, says ‘bang bang’. It was loaded and killed him.  Think about that mother. The next day, Mother’s Day, and one boy is dead by the hand of his younger brother.”

And as a result …

The total number of deaths by gun violence in the U.S. as of May 16th is 14,815 … a number that is sure to have already increased by the time you read this.  84 of that number were children under the age of 11, and 322 teens under the age of 18 are also included in the number. gun-violence-5-2020

And as a result …

In March 2017, a mother and her two-year-old toddler were sitting on the bed, while the nine-year-old was sitting on the floor, playing a video game.  The mother had a loaded gun in her hand, but couldn’t find her holster, so she placed the gun (loaded with a round chambered) on the bed next to the two-year-old while she got up to look for her holster.  The two-year-old then picked up the gun, pulled the trigger, shot and killed his nine-year-old brother.  The mother had, in the past, allowed the toddler to pull the trigger on the gun when it was unloaded.

I could go on, but you get the picture … this is happening every day in the United States. Look at the chart above … already this year, not even five months into the year, we are on track to tie or beat previous years.

The gun culture in the U.S. is beyond crazy.  This is not in any way, shape, or form what James Madison meant in 1791 when he proposed the Second Amendment as a way to empower state militias.  Today, there are no state militias.  None.  There are juveniles in grown men’s bodies who believe that they must own a firearm in order to feel like a ‘man’, but these men do not belong to militias and they are doing not one damn thing to keep this country safe, but instead are making it the most dangerous nation in the industrialized world.  People in other nations are aghast … “What are you Americans thinking???”, they ask.  What are we thinking, indeed?

The wealthy arms manufacturers fund the National Rifle Association who in turn *buys our legislators, thereby ensuring that guns will continue to be a part of what they call “The American Way of Life”.  What a joke!  “The American Way of Death” would be more apt.  And thus it happened that in March, while people were beginning to die by the thousands from the coronavirus, it was the single biggest month for gun sales.  WHY???  WTF are people thinking?  In April, gun lobbyists convinced the federal government to list gun shops as “essential services” so that while people in some states could not purchase a bottle of wine, or a pack of toilet paper, they could go out and buy a gun.  Five states’ governors had the cojones to order gun shops closed anyway, but April’s total was still the fourth highest ever. In three of the five states where gun stores were supposed to be closed, the numbers were higher than they were in April of 2019.

The United States is facing more problems of a greater magnitude today than since the end of World War II, the coronavirus pandemic obviously being at the top of the immediate list.  I would rank numbers two and three as racism and gun violence … problems that far outweigh even the sinking economy.  And yet, Donald Trump wastes every waking minute ranting, calling out his imagined enemies, denigrating the press, dreaming up conspiracy theories, and patting himself on the back for successes that exist only in his own mind.  We’re in trouble, people, and guns are not going to solve the problem, for they ARE a big part of the problem.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has taken NRA donations of $1,267,139 during his congressional career, but the leader of the pack is Mitt Romney, who has taken $13,647,676 during his time in Congress.  Interestingly, the 2nd highest in NRA donations is Senator Richard Burr, who is currently under investigation for insider trading violations.  Senator Burr has collected a handy $6,987,380 in his twenty-five years in Congress.  Source:  Brady United Organization

Running While Black?

The most heinous crime I can imagine was committed three months ago in the State of Georgia, where a gun-lovin’ racist, Brian Kemp, is governor. This is the stuff of the mid-1950s, not the 21st century!!! Our friend Jeff is as incensed as I am, and he has written a passionate piece about the brutal slaying of Ahmaud Arbery, a black man gunned down for no reason by a couple of Georgia crackers. Thank you, Jeff. Sigh.

On The Fence Voters

Pissed. Angry. Distraught. Hopeless. Any of these words describe your feelings these days? Personally, I’ve had them all in the last 24 hours. And then I saw a video of a young African-American male gunned down and slaughtered by a couple of yahoo vigilante white dudes. My head exploded.

Another one murdered—this time apparently for having the nerve to jog down the street in the middle of the day. The nerve of this young man, right? How dare he run while black, in a white neighborhood? Doesn’t he know his place?

For those of you wondering what the story is, perhaps you haven’t seen the video yet. Ahmaud Arbery, a 25-year-old black man, is seen being chased by two white men in a pickup truck outside the city of Brunswick, Georgia. A confrontation occurs between the younger white man and Arbery, shots were fired, and Arbery is seen falling to…

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