Dear Republicans, Your Dark Money Days Are About To Hit A Roadblock

In 2010, with the Citizens United decision that removed limits on how much money corporations could contribute to political campaigns, we saw the beginning of an era whereby wealthy corporations are pretty much able to buy elections. The ruling was the beginning of the end of election integrity. But this week, a small step was taken that may be a start toward returning a bit of integrity to the U.S. elections, and our friend Gronda has written an excellent, informative piece explaining it. Thank you, Gronda, for keeping us informed!

Gronda Morin

Image result for photos of americans for prosperity

Could the Republican Party be in receipt for even more negative news? Yes, as many donors of dark monies, (monies they can donate for political purposes anonymously), will have the cloak of anonymity taken away. Again, the courts have stepped in to rule that many of these donors will have to reveal their names to the public, even before the November 2018 elections.

Here is the rest of the story… 

On September 18, 2018, Paul Blumenthal of HuffPost penned the following report, “Dark Money Groups Will Have To Disclose Their Donors In Time For The Midterms” (“A court order invalidating a rule that kept some election spending secret is going into effect.”)

Excerpts:

“There may be a whole lot less dark money in federal elections after the Supreme Court allowed a lower court decision to go into effect on Tuesday invalidating a key regulation that created a loophole for…

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On Being Found Wanting

Today, our friend Roger wrote a post that I have to share with you all. In the politically divided world we find ourselves in today, it is altogether too easy to wake up one morning and find that ‘we’ have become ‘they’, that our own voices are just as toxic as those with whom we disagree. Several times in the past year I have written a post, then scrapped it after a 2nd reading, realizing that it was more vitriolic than informative. Roger’s post speaks of his own struggles to remain above the fray, and his words, spoken from his heart, have value for us all. Many thanks, Roger, for sharing your thoughts and for your kind permission to re-blog.

Raging from the Lectern

Citizen present yourself before the tribunal….. 

Back in the good (that’s irony for all you humourless folk out there, of whatever political stripe) old days of Communist Rule, the powers in charge were very big on Critical Self-Examination. This meant some hapless person who had fallen out of favour got hauled up before a tribunal to confess whatever they’d been told to confess to if they really cared for their family or hoped they might get out in one piece. Having said they had been very, very wrong for whatever it was they had been told they had done wrong they would be shunted out to a firing squad, prison camp in the back of beyond, or if it was being blamed for the demise of the Committee’s potted plants simply sent to clean sewers with their bare hands for a while. No one considered ‘Not Guilty’ as an option.

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Why God Is Laughing At Brett Kavanaugh And His Fellow Republicans

Much has been said and written about Brett Kavanaugh and his confirmation hearings in the past few weeks, much debate about his fitness (or lack thereof) for a seat on the U.S. Supreme Court. I have purposely avoided writing about Kavanaugh because I knew I did not have all the information needed to make an informed opinion, although I instinctively felt he was not a good candidate for the position. Friend Gronda has summed up nicely the many reasons that Kavanaugh should not be confirmed for the seat on the Court, and today I share her highly informative post. Gronda presents much information about Kavanaugh’s judicial history that I was not aware of, so please take a minute to read. Many thanks, Gronda!

Gronda Morin

Image result for photos bill clinton in impeachment daysRemember the gentlemen who went after President Bill Clinton tooth and nail for his sexual misdeeds when he presided in the White House. Well Judge Brett Kavanaugh was one of those players who relished pontificating on President Clinton’s lack of moral character. It was Mr. Kavanaugh who recommended to the Special Prosecutor Kenneth Starr that he ask President Clinton questions about his sexual peccadilloes in the most salacious way possible.

Just read what the republican Senators Orrin Hatch and Chuck Grassley stated for the record (below), as to why they voted to impeach President Clinton in 1996, and they are the same ones who are fast -tracking the confirmation process through the US Senate Judiciary Committee, for Judge Brett Kavanaugh to become the next US Supreme Court Justice. Today, they are crying foul as a 51 year old woman is bringing a 36 year old of attempted rape allegation against…

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Sign Of The Apocalypse?

When I first began reading Hugh’s post, I inadvertently let out a primal scream, and after another paragraph, slammed the lid on my laptop, got up and reheated a small bowl of rice before I could finish reading the post. This may not sound like an endorsement for the post, but believe me, it is. Hugh has brought to light something that is happening today that has far longer reaching and outlasting consequences than any of the many abominations tied to Donald Trump. The subject? The re-writing of history, the replacing of facts with opinions. Please, please take a few minutes to read Hugh’s excellent post and think about what he is saying. Get your bowl of rice before you start, though. Thank you, dear Hugh, for bringing this to our attention, and for your generous permission to share.

hughcurtler

One of the more insidious movements in this country is that toward the rewriting of history– eliminating unpleasant facts from the history books. This movement is perhaps a part of the New History movement about which I have blogged in the past — the attempt to reduce history to a form of literature, giving special attention to minor historical figures that have been ignored in the past (probably with good reason!)

In any event, one does wonder why this sort of censorship is not only allowed, but encouraged — even by the Texas State Board of Education which has decided to erase any mention of Hillary Clinton from the history textbooks in order to “streamline” history. As a recent Yahoo news story tells us:

The Texas State Board of Education voted Friday to remove mentions of Hillary Clinton and Helen Keller from the state’s mandatory history curriculum . . .  The…

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Blockbuster News: President’s Former Campaign Manager Cuts Cooperating Plea Deal With FBI

This is the news we have all been waiting to hear. I hope this is the beginning of the end of the Trumpian Reign of Absurdity. Many thanks, Gronda, for being on top of this and keeping us informed!

Gronda Morin

Image result for photos of manafort PAUL MANAFORT

I’ve been waiting to post on the news of the republican President Donald Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort until more information was available as to whether he was cutting a plea deal with cooperation or with non-co-operation with the FBI.

It is pretty much a consensus that Mr. Manafort is most likely counting on a presidential pardon sometime in the future which is a reasonable expectation as President Trump has hinted that he would be willing to do so.

It is my hope the the FBI’s Special Counsel Robert Mueller III, head of its Trump-Russia probe would not cut a plea deal without this reality being a consideration.

I suspect that Mr. Mueller would not consider a plea deal without co-operation unless he has determined that he doesn’t need Mr. Manafort’s assistance to build a strong case and without accounting for a possible future pardon.

It is…

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Not so Freaky Fridays anymore

As always, our friend Keith has a way of summing things up in a manner that commands attention without raising his voice (or beating the letters off his keyboard, as I have). His summation of the past week is spot on, and his question at the end of the post is one that should give each and every one of us cause to stop & think. Thank you, Keith, for permission to share your wise words.

musingsofanoldfart

It seems that news people recapping the week are in a continual, almost weekly, loop saying the President had a difficult week. One week it was the appropriate backlash on his Helsinki acquiescence to Vladimir Putin. Another week was the conviction and confession of two of his cronies. Earlier it was the detention of migrant children away from their parents. And, there are many others.

This past week started last Saturday with the funeral of a true hero and honorable public servant, an event to which he was purposefully uninvited. Not being invited to the national mourning of Senator John McCain was bad enough, but his modus operandi was appropriately criticized without mentioning his name by more than a few speakers.

By itself, this event would warrant a bad week, but it was followed by the release of excerpts from highly credible reporter Bob Woodward’s book on the disruptive White…

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Modern Day Slavery.

Early this morning, I wrote a short piece sharing my angst over the fact that I have been so wrapped up in writing about U.S. politics that I had missed a couple of very serious issues that deserved attention. At that moment, tired and sad, I saw this as an egregious failure on my part. Our friend David, however, one of the greatest humanitarians I know, picked up that ball and ran with it, writing of one of the issues I had let fall through the cracks: the slave trade on the African continent. Please take a few moments to read David’s enlightening and informative post, for the first step in solving this humanitarian crisis is awareness, and far too many of us are unaware what goes on outside our own corner of the world. Thank you, David, for bringing our attention to this massive atrocity.

The BUTHIDARS

Eritrea is a small African country in the North East or Horn of Africa. It’s Capital is Asmara. After the Second World War Eritrea was taken away from the Italians and administered by the British until 1952. At that time the UN General Assembly voted to make Eritrea self governing but tied to Ethiopia it’s larger neighbour for a period of ten years. In 1962 the Government of Ethiopia annulled the agreement and tried to annexe Eritrea bringing about armed resistance from the Eritreans and they proved to be difficult to defeat. In 1991 after almost 30 years continual warfare Eritrea got it’s wish. Or did it? It became a one party state under the EPLF which later became the People’s Front for Democracy. In itself, if this didn’t make me laugh I’d have to cry. National  legislative elections have been postponed time and again.

The Government of Eritrea has…

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Not a damn thing

As you all know by now, I am a proponent of strict gun laws at the federal level … the sort of gun laws that gives the NRA and weapons manufacturers nightmares. We have just had another mass shooting in this country, and I was debating about whether and how to write about it, when I came across Keith’s excellent post. Why re-invent the wheel, right? Thank you, Keith, for this post. Someday, perhaps, people will clean out their ears and listen to us, eh?

musingsofanoldfart

What a surprise, yet another shooting in America. This one occurred in my home town at a place where I have visited. That disappoints me, but is irrelevant. It can happen anywhere in a America and the legislators will do what they tend to do – not a damn thing.

As I was learning of the Jacksonville Landing shooting, I saw three more stories about shootings where I live now. To witness the magnitude of the problem, just count the gun death stories in the news for a month. Gun deaths happen everyday and you know what will be done about them – not a damn thing.

The definition of insanity is doing the same thing again and again and expecting a different outcome. It could be said about continuing to do not a damn thing and expecting a different outcome. It is apparent doing little to nothing is not…

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Hearts Are Breaking, The Beloved Aretha Franklin Has Passed At 76

Today, the world lost a great talent, but she left us a beautiful legacy that will live on forever. Friend Gronda has made a perfectly beautiful tribute to this fantastic lady, and I wish to share it with you today. Thank you, Gronda.

Gronda Morin

I became a fan a little later in her career, when she had that iconic role in the “Blues Brothers,” a movie I do watch about once a year.

She’s a beloved soul singer, talent extraordinaire who’s voice is instantly recognizable by anyone who loves music.

I’m grieving for a major loss to a talent who made a difference in this world.

Here is the rest of the story…

On August 16, 2018, BBC News published the following report, “Aretha Franklin, ‘Queen of Soul’, dies aged 76″

“Aretha Franklin, the “queen of soul” known for hits like Respect and Think, has died in Detroit at the age of 76.”

The legendary singer was diagnosed with cancer in 2010 and announced last year she was retiring from music.

“Franklin had more than 20 US number ones over a career spanning seven decades.”

“She gave her final performance last November at…

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Michael Drejka Charged With Manslaughter For Killing Markeis McGlockton – Stand Your Ground Law

I have been following with interest the latest use of the ‘Stand Your Ground’ law … the same law that saw George Zimmerman go scot-free after murdering the unarmed Trayvon Martin in February 2012. In this case, another unarmed black man, Markeis McGlockton, was shot and killed in a dispute over a handicapped parking space by a legally disinterested party, Michael Drejka. The story was on my list to write about, but had not yet made it to the top of the list when I read this excellent post by blogger-friend Xena. If the evidence in this case is properly presented and considered by the jury, this one should have a different outcome than the Trayvon Martin case … let us hope. Thank you, Xena, for this highly informative post!

We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident

Markeis McGlockton

I saw the video for this case when it first happened, and also read that the Sheriff refused to arrest Michael Drejka because of Florida’s stand your ground law.  When I saw the video, it was my impression that the shooter was an elderly man.  Maybe it was his posture or the fact that he fell to the ground so easily.  It turns out that Drejka was 47-years old on July 19, 2018 when he shot and killed 28-year old Markeis McGlockton.

Here is the video.

Comments were quickly posted on Twitter protesting that Drejka was not arrested.  Thinking that an elderly man might be afraid of a younger man pushing him to the ground, I sighed at the thought that he could avoid arrest using stand your ground in his defense.  Then, I watched the video again and saw where Markeis’ girlfriend Britany Jacobs, was getting out…

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