“They may ring their bells now; before long they will be wringing their hands. –“ Robert Walpole 1739.

Wise words of warning from our friend Roger …

The World As It Is. Not As It Should Be

maga mob

I don’t suppose it occurs to any of them to read History

Nazi Germany Before

Germany Pre-World War II

Nazi Germany After Women

Germany 1945.

And finally warning from Old Testament:

Lamentations 2:2 V 18

The visions your prophets had on your behalf were delusive, tinsel things, they never pointed out your sin, to ward off your exile.  The visions they proffered you were false, fallacious, misleading.

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VOTE, DAMMIT!!!

Today, the Wisconsin State Supreme Court barred the use of ballot drop boxes and ruled voters could not give their completed absentee ballots to others to return on their behalf.  This is but one of the many new voter suppression moves by the states, especially those that are considered ‘red’ states, but the utter gall of it disgusts me.  Who does it hurt?  Blue collar working people, poor people, elderly and young people, Black people … all those categories that are more likely to vote for a Democrat come election day.  Hell, they might just as well have said that only registered Republicans will be allowed to vote!  Or … why even have an election … why not just let the damn Supreme Court decide who will make the laws?  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrr.

These voter restriction laws are designed with one purpose in mind … to keep people from the polls.  Their efforts can only work if we let them, if we are too lazy or too apathetic to go the extra mile to ensure our voices are heard.  In 2020, we saw the highest percentage of voter turnout in over a century … a whopping 60%!  If that figure doesn’t disgust you, then you aren’t paying attention.  Jonathan Capehart, writing for The Washington Post, sums it up nicely and his final paragraph says it all …


Vote, dang it! It’s your one superpower in our democracy.

Jonathan Capehart, 8 July 2022

Okay, America. Now that the celebration of your 246th birthday is over, you’ve got some work to do. Or, at least the “you” who are Democrats do. Y’all are experts at hair-on-fire complaining and savior hunting, all while ignoring the power of your own vote and growling at anyone who reminds you of it.

There has been story after story after story about how Democrats are mad at President Biden for fill-in-the-blank deficiency. (My colleague Dana Milbank recently did his usual excellent job of cataloging the absurdity of it all.) I’m not saying the White House is perfect or isn’t in need of some messaging improvements. What I am saying is enough with the self-defeating backbiting. Neither Biden nor the party — or the country, for that matter — can afford the consequences.

The mewling and moaning seem to have begun in earnest late last month after Biden’s remarks on the Supreme Court overturning the constitutional right to an abortion. “Voters need to make their voices heard,” Biden said. “This fall, we must elect more senators and representatives who will codify a woman’s right to choose into federal law once again, elect more state leaders to protect this right at the local level.”

This “Schoolhouse Rock!” statement of fact was greeted with derision and cries of “Is that the best you’ve got?” The maddening, all-too-typical shortsightedness makes me want to grow my hair out — so I could tear my hair out.

Biden is a president elected by the people, not a king ruling from on high. He needs a House and Senate that will send him legislation he can sign into law. If Biden is to do all the ambitious things today’s complainers (rightly) want, they need to give him a bigger Democratic majority in Congress than the wafer-thin one that exists now.

But here’s what most irksome: Those complainers will claim demoralization because of what they see as Biden’s legislative impotence, and then stay home in November. And if this abdication ends up rolling out the red carpet for Republicans, said complainers will blame Democrats for the ensuing mayhem of the GOP demolishing even more rights.

Before you turn the comments and my mentions into a dumpster fire of invective, let’s walk down memory lane to that time Democrats lost the House and then the Senate in successive midterm elections.

A wave of hope-and-change put President Barack Obama in the White House in the 2008 election. In the 2010 midterms, 26 million fewer Democrats voted for House candidates than in 2008. Tea party-powered Republicans claimed the House majority by gaining 63 seats; the GOP vote fell off, too, as is common in midterms for both parties — but not nearly as sharply.

Yes, Obama won reelection in 2012. But by the time of the 2014 midterms, he was begging the coalition that sent him back to the White House to show up at the polls. Nope. Not only did the GOP increase its House majority to the largest since World War II, but Democrats lost their Senate majority. About 15 million fewer Democrats cast ballots for Senate candidates in 2014 than in 2008 — compared with only about 6 million fewer Republicans.

Democrats are facing a few structural and historical headwinds. The president’s party almost always loses seats in the midterms of its first term; the one exception since World War II is 2002, after the 9/11 attacks. Voter suppression efforts in the states are focused on African Americans and other key Democratic constituencies. Gerrymandering is a problem, of course, and the Senate is built in a way that disadvantages Democrats. Unfair as it may be, voter participation is the one power individuals can wield against those headwinds.

And let me be clear that I understand the urgency of doing something right now to safeguard the lives and health of women and girls post-Roe. But it is imperative we do everything possible to try to prevent what could be a Republican wave and the conservative revanchism that would undoubtedly attend it.

During an interview about her documentary “Aftershock” on Black maternal mortality, I decided to ask Tonya Lewis Lee what she would tell the increasingly vocal “why should we vote again?” crowd now that the right to abortion has been stripped away. She was unequivocal. “Voting matters. You need to vote again and again and again,” Lee said. “Voting is everything.”

Indeed, it is. You can either spend your time griping about nothing getting done or you can vote to help elect people who will do what the American people need. To argue that voting is a waste of time or useless is to participate in your own powerlessness.

“I No Longer Recognize My Country…”

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times …” depending on your set of (or lack of) values, the colour of your skin, your religious beliefs (or non-beliefs), and your views of what a nation should be. Our friend Annie sums up our times with a clear-eyed view that is both realistic, but also gives us a bit of hope that perhaps we can overcome today’s chaos and come out a better country than before. I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read her piece and give it some thought. And do the one thing we can ALL do — VOTE! Thank you, Annie!

annieasksyou...

I have increasingly come across the sad expression: “I no longer recognize my country.”

I not only understand that expression; I also share it. We are being buffeted by a series of events that are searing to live through. We used to be so proud to be Americans. How did things go so terribly wrong?

Then “I no longer recognize my country” evokes other thoughts. For one, I think of the incredible Ukrainians, who have been fighting an existential battle for their very existence since February and have lived with active war in parts of their country for years–and threats for most of their national life. They’ve also long fought valiantly against internal corruption.

They put their bodies on the line every day—fighting to keep their hard-won democracy and their autonomy against mammoth odds.

Structurally, they can no longer recognize their country because their country as they remember it no…

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A Chilling Tweet

There are probably no more than five Republicans sitting in Congress today who are deserving of the honour of representing We the People, and of the new ones currently seeking a seat in Congress, not a single one is qualified.  And yet, their lies and wild conspiracy theories have gained them a following and there is a possibility that Republicans will gain a majority in one or possibly both chambers of Congress next year.  That, in and of itself should make intelligent people of good conscience more determined than ever to overcome the barriers and get out to vote, take their neighbors to the polls, volunteer as a poll worker … whatever it takes to keep Republicans out of Congress.  I have never been a member of either party, have always been an Independent, but I’ve never felt as affiliated, even if unofficially, with a party as I do the Democrats today.

This morning, the following text by Kevin McCarthy sent a distinct chill down my spine …

And the first thought that came to my mind was … they plan to impeach President Biden!

For what?  For nothing.

The article he refers to in the New York Post was written by none other than McCarthy himself and the ignoble Jim (Gym) Jordan, neither of which are known for being truthful or men of good conscience.

Let’s be clear here … I neither know nor particularly care what Hunter Biden did or didn’t do when he worked for Burisma Holdings.  Hunter Biden is not the president of the U.S.  Hunter Biden does have a drug problem, but that does not make him a criminal, and frankly I think we all … each and every one of us … have a family member with a drug or alcohol problem … I know I do.  But more to the point, we don’t blame people for the sins of their family members … if we did, nobody could ever be elected to any public office.  If we did, Justice Clarence Thomas would have been ousted from the Supreme Court already.

In fact, McCarthy himself does not have a clean nose.  He dropped out of the race for Speaker of the House in 2015 after his affair with a congresswoman from North Carolina was made public, and … his brother-in-law owns a construction company that has suspiciously received more than $7.6 million in federal contracts since 2000.  All of which is irrelevant, but points to the old saying that “people who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.”

Think about this one for a minute … if the Republicans gain a majority in the House and Senate, and if the Republicans are stupid enough to vote for McCarthy to be the Speaker of the House following November’s election, then they could indeed begin investigations and could indeed dig up or make up something about some member of the President’s family, could embellish it to the point of making it sound like a smoking gun, and vote to impeach.  See, here’s the thing … the Republican Party of today is one without values, without integrity, without a conscience.  The Constitution no longer means anything to them … We the People no longer mean anything, except to be manipulated and used as a tool for their own benefit. It is a party that is in the fearsome grip of a madman who hopes to become the dictator of this nation two years hence.  So, even without any viable or legitimate evidence, there is no doubt that the Republicans in both chambers of Congress would fall in line, be in lockstep with McCarthy’s plot.

So, what if they impeach Biden?  Kamala Harris would be the only thing standing in the way of a “President Kevin McCarthy”.  Are you chilled yet?  And we can bet money that a “President McCarthy” would be a puppet of the evil ‘man’ currently residing at Mar-a-Lago.

We the People have the power to stop this plan in its tracks, but WE MUST ALL VOTE!!!  That is, literally, the ONLY way to preserve what is left of the democratic foundations of this country.  VOTE McCarthy OUT, for Pete’s Sake!  Vote them all out!!!  The Republican Party is no longer one of decency, of conscience, of integrity or values.  Their only goal is power … absolute power … and they will lie, cheat, and steal to obtain that goal.  And that, my friends, should scare the hell out of you.

Today Is A Dark Day

So, there were no surprises in the Supreme Court ruling in the case of Dobbs v Jackson Women’s Health, but nonetheless it was a gut punch for at least half the people in this nation.  We knew this was to be the outcome, for we read Justice Alito’s leaked opinion on May 2nd and our jaws dropped then, just as they did this morning.

What hypocrisy that yesterday the Court ruled it illegal for states to do ANYTHING to restrict the rights of gun owners, and today the same Court ruled that it is perfectly legal to do EVERYTHING possible to restrict the rights of women.  It should be noted that the majority of gun owners are, in fact, males.  Well, my friends, we women know where we stand.

But it isn’t going to stop here, and Justice Clarence Thomas, husband of insurrectionist Virginia Thomas, has already made that perfectly clear …

“We should reconsider all of this Court’s substantive due process precedents, including Griswold, Lawrence, and Obergefell. We have a duty to correct the error established in those precedents. After overruling these demonstrably erroneous decisions, the question would remain whether other constitutional provisions guarantee the myriad rights that our substantive due process cases have generated.”

The cases he refers directly to are:

  • Griswold v Connecticut – a landmark decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in which the Court ruled that the Constitution of the United States protects the liberty of married couples to buy and use contraceptives without government restriction.
  • Lawrence v. Texas – a decision of the U.S. Supreme Court in which the Court ruled that sanctions of criminal punishment for those who commit sodomy are unconstitutional.
  • Obergefell v Hodges – a landmark civil rights case in which the Supreme ruled that the fundamental right to marry is guaranteed to same-sex couples by both the Due Process Clause and the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution.

I have lost all respect for the United States Supreme Court, for they have taken this nation into darkness, have shirked their duty to the U.S. Constitution, to the nation, and to We the People.  Today, the Court is but another arm of the right-wing of the Republican Party, doing not what is in the best interest of the people, but what is demanded by the religious fanatics who would control every aspect of our lives.

The majority of people in this country want gun laws that will protect us and our families from such incidents as Uvalde and Buffalo.  The majority of people in this nation believe women should have the right to make their own health decisions.  But the will of the majority matters not on this dark day, for the spate of recent decisions have all gone against what the majority of people in this nation want.  This can only lead me to believe that in some sense, we are already living under an autocratic government if the will of the majority can be completely disregarded while the will of the few wins the day.  Today, it was women’s rights, but tomorrow …

First they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me

Poem by Martin Niemöller

One Thought …

I watched today’s January 6th Committee hearing in its entirety and … phew.  As I folded a load of towels after watching the last bit of it, the only thing I could think of was that if what was done to some of these election officials is considered ‘okay’, then democracy is dead in the United States of ‘America’.  If some 30% or more of the people in this nation believe that it’s okay to threaten a Secretary of State because he refused to change the votes of the people, if they believe it is okay to harass not only the election officials, but their parents, spouses, children and grandchildren … then folks, we are not “… one nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” 

Juneteenth — Another Point Of View

This is another that I first published last year, but felt it was well worth reprising this year, for it is thought-provoking and adds context, another view, to the discussion. 


While I have applauded the passage and presidential signing of the Juneteenth National Independence Day Act and have chalked up most of the objections to both ignorance and racism, I did come across one thought-provoking OpEd.  This piece by a professor at Morehouse College, a historically Black liberal arts college in Atlanta, Georgia, makes some very valid points.  Professor Robert A. Brown is not against the Juneteenth holiday, but reminds us that declaring it a federal holiday is not the end goal, that there is much work to be done in this country yet before Blacks have true freedom and equality.  The phrase, ‘Talk is cheap, actions speak louder than words’ comes to mind as I read his words and ponder what he says …


Juneteenth As A National Holiday Is Symbolism Without Progress

June 19, 2021  6:00 AM ET

ROBERT A. BROWN

This week, President Biden signed into law the “Juneteenth National Independence Day.”

It is honoring the work of Black Americans, including people such as 94-year-old Civil Rights Activist Opal Lee, who had long advocated for the celebration that started in Galveston to be made a federal holiday.

Juneteenth celebrates the date when Union troops arrived in Galveston, Texas, on June 19th, 1865, bringing news that the Emancipation Proclamation had freed the enslaved population living in the Confederacy, albeit two years prior.

Yet the reaction amongst many African Americans, myself included, has been muted.

There is a growing discontent in the African American community with symbolic gestures that are presented as progress without any accompanying economic or structural change.

The vestiges of a shameful past continue

Though Juneteenth is a celebration of the people who endured slavery, the vestiges of slavery and the Jim Crow segregation designed to preserve it continue to this day.

As law professor Michelle Alexander notes, “There are more African American men in prison or jail, on probation or parole than were enslaved in 1850.”

The average white household holds almost 7 times more than the wealth of a Black household. Perhaps more concerning, education does little to close the Black-white wealth gap as white families headed by those without a college degree have more wealth than Black families headed by those with a graduate or professional degree.

And yet, in the face of these stark disparities, lawmakers have been more willing to engage in performative symbolism than passing laws to make substantive change.

We have seen federal lawmakers take a knee, draped in kente cloth, but we have seen no substantive change about reforming police brutality that inspired Colin Kaepernick’s initial protest.

Lift Every Voice and Sing” is sung across the country, while legislation for reparations for the horrors of slavery languish. Sports arenas and streets have the words “Black Lives Matter” emblazoned for all to see, and yet police reform and anti-lynching laws that were some of the initial goals of the Black Lives Matter movement remain unpassed.

What is needed are substantive steps

There are substantive steps that federal lawmakers could take to honor the historic debt owed to the descendants of the enslaved in addition to a federal holiday.

House Resolution 40 has called for a committee to study reparations. If advanced, it could ultimately begin a national discussion about cash reparations at the federal level.

Substantive reform to end the immunity police who brutalize our citizens should be enacted, as well as a reversal of the decades-long militarization of the police.

Historically Black colleges and universities, most of which were founded around the end of slavery, should receive substantial increases in federal funding.

In many ways, the history of Juneteenth and the end of U.S. slavery mirrors the uneven pace of progress for African Americans during the following 150 years.

I have celebrated Juneteenth at festivals that honor the culture and community of the descendants of those who had been enslaved. Those celebrations always featured a community singing of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” just like members of Congress did upon the signing of the Juneteenth holiday into law.

This year, while I’ll sing about being “full of the faith that the dark past has taught us,” like many African Americans, I’ll be mindful that, as the song says, we must continue to fight on “till victory is won.”

A Cautionary Vision

I woke to the sound of gunfire.  Looked at the clock — 4:17 a.m.  Waking to gunfire is nothing new here, but still, it took several cigarettes and about 25 pages of reading before I calmed down enough to get back to sleep, and it seemed like only minutes until my alarm clock awakened me.

The date is November 15th in the year 2030.

Today is an important day for me and my two children, Eddie and Beth.  Today is either the first day of the rest of our lives, or else it is the last day of our lives.  I do not know which it will be, but I know that I am willing to risk not only my own life, but that of my children to get us away from the living hell that has ensued since 2024 when a true madman took over the nation.  We have friends in Canada who have told us where to cross in order to avoid detection, and who will help us with shelter and food until I can find a job and we can get back on our feet.  What, you ask, has led me to such a dangerous and traumatic decision?  Let me tell you about the year 2025, the first year of hell.

The 2024 election was won by the Democratic candidate, but he and his family mysteriously disappeared less than three weeks after the election.  Six years later, and there is still no sign of him, his family, or his body, but it is believed that he and his family were murdered.  I still do not understand how the election results were overturned, but they were, and long story short, the Republican candidate took office … and he is still there today with no plans for any future elections.

What changed, you ask?  So many things have changed that I cannot even keep track, but a few of the most crucial things are the nightmares that invade my sleep each and every night.  First, the new ‘president’ was inaugurated on January 20, 2025, and he gave a lengthy speech thereafter, promising (warning) that ‘big changes’ were coming.  He was surrounded by ‘his people’ who applauded until I thought their hands must surely have blisters.  Among those ‘big changes’ that came in the first year were cuts to such things as Social Security, Medicare/Medicaid, housing and food assistance for the poor, and programs that provided financial assistance for college students whose families couldn’t afford college.

But the next year was worse.  2026 would normally have been a mid-term election year, but as we neared November, something didn’t smell right.  I had a bad feeling, a bad vibe you might call it.  And sure enough, in late October, there were six school shootings resulting in the deaths of 223 students and the injuries of far more.  This led to protests in nearly every city across the U.S. as people demanded gun regulations.  But, instead of responding with any degree of empathy, even false empathy, the ‘president’ called out the National Guard and put the entire nation under a lockdown.  We were allowed to go only to work and back home, or to buy food, medicine, and absolute essentials, and even then we had to show ‘passes’.  What followed, of course, was that the president declared the nation to be in a ‘state of emergency’ and the election was cancelled.  When the state of emergency was finally lifted some seven months later, the ‘president’ had appointed the new members of Congress using ‘emergency powers’ that he created and the U.S. Supreme Court, such as it now is, supported.

Schools are now regulated, meaning the only science courses that can be taught are such things as Physics, Astronomy, and Oceanography.  Biology is taboo.  U.S. History is now a joke.  Our children are taught that white men brought Black people here to rescue them from the horrible conditions in their native Africa, and that white people treated them so well that they begged to live and work forever on white man’s plantations.  Indigenous People are no longer mentioned in the history books and such men and women as Martin Luther King, Harriet Tubman, Booker T. Washington are not found in any book in the schools or public libraries.  Such books are considered ‘contraband’ and possessing one can send a person to prison.

Legislation has been passed and signed into law making Blacks, women, Hispanics, Asians, Muslims and Jews basically 2nd class citizens.  If a white person is caught out in public with one of these people, they can go to jail.  The 2nd class citizens can only hold certain jobs, such as maintenance, auto repair, sales clerks, restaurant and factory workers.  They are not allowed to enroll in any college.  Colleges and high-level jobs, government positions, are all reserved for white males only.

There is a state religion that everyone is forced to become a member of and adhere to.  It is a very intolerant religion that praises white males, calls for subservience by the rest, and calls for the execution of LGBTQ people.  On August 20, 2027, more than 12,000 LGBTQ people were rounded up in every city around the nation and executed in a very public manner.  It was replayed on television endlessly for days.  I’ve never cried so much in my life, for my brother was one of those who was murdered so brutally before a firing squad.  I watched with tears rolling down my face, while the crowds applauded and cheered and said they were “making America great again.”  Perhaps my definition of ‘great’ differs from theirs.

We live under a brutal regime, our every move watched 24/7.  Our lives are not our own.  I cannot live like this any longer.  My children and I are so hoping for a better life north of the border, but if we fail, we will have no life and will fade into the annals of obscurity.  Either way, we will be free of these chains that bind us.  Our world is on fire and there is nobody to save us.


Fiction?  Yes, this is my nightmare of late, or some variation of it.  The things I wrote about above … well, my friends, those things or some semblance of them could come to pass if we don’t guard and protect our Constitution, our republic.  Today, there are so many in positions of power who are, at heart, autocrats and who have whatever it is that brings followers, ignorant souls who do not know history and cannot envision the future, to their cause.

Paper Democracy

As usual, blogging friend Brosephus sees clearly the situation at hand, the loss of democratic underpinnings in this nation, the loss of voting rights and women’s rights, among others. We are what Brosephus aptly calls a ‘paper democracy’. Thanks, Bro, for these wise words …

The Mind of Brosephus

America is a paper democracy, meaning it’s a democracy in name only. It’s been that way from the founding of the country and has stayed the course throughout our history as a nation. We’ve flirted with real democracy for short periods of time like during Reconstruction and the Civil Rights Era. Each time we’ve come close, the country reverses progress and returns to being paper.

For those who are unaware, the terms “real” and “paper” as well as the intended meaning in this post are borrowed from the Divine Nine culture, or the National Pan-Hellenic Council (NPHC). When a member is considered as real, they have gone through the pledging rituals, put in the time/effort, and did the requisite work to earn their membership in their respective Greek Letter organization. Paper members are more likely to have paid their fees, learned their history, and received their letters without the grueling…

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Orbán Is Teaching, Republicans Are All Ears

On Thursday, the Republicans began their annual CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conference) meeting … in the nation of Hungary, not here in the U.S.  Not even in a democratic nation, but in one ruled by an authoritarian, Viktor Orbán.  One might ask why they would go to the extra trouble, extra expense, and spend the extra time holding their meetings more than 4,000 miles away.  And I might answer that it is their goal to model the United States on Orbán’s example, to establish the same sort of country that Hungary is today.  Need proof?

The unconscionable Matt Schlapp, the head of the American Conservative Union and organizer of CPAC, told NPR this week that he was bringing his event to Hungary because it “represents Christian conservative values” and American conservatives want to replicate this in the U.S. by learning from the country’s ultra-right-wing authoritarian prime minister, Viktor Orbán.

The conference’s program shows exactly what topics are important to the Trump wing of the Republican Party, with sessions entitled: “Western civilization under attack,” “In God we trust,” “The father is a man, the mother is a woman,” and “Culture wars in the media.”  Joining Schlapp and the rest of the KKK Republicans will be the truly nasty Candace Owens and her current hubby, Parler CEO George Farmer.  Oh, and guess who else will be making an appearance via video message?  The ignoble Tucker Carlson of Fox ‘News’ and Mark Meadows, former chief of staff for the twice-impeached former guy.  What a lineup, eh?  So much filth all in one place!  They may have to burn the building just to get rid of the stench.

But the ‘star’ of the show is Orbán himself, the main reason the convention is being held in Hungary to begin with.  In his opening remarks on Thursday, he said …

  • “We need to take back the institutions in Washington and Brussels. We need to find friends, and we need to find allies. We need to coordinate the movement of our troops, because we have a big challenge ahead of us.”
  • “Have your own media. It’s the only way to point out the insanity of the progressive left. The problem is that the western media is adjusted to the leftist viewpoint. Those who taught reporters in universities already had progressive leftist principles. Of course, the GOP has its media allies, but they can’t compete with the mainstream liberal media. My friend, Tucker Carlson is the only one who puts himself out there. His show is the most popular. What does it mean? It means programs like his should be broadcasted day and night. Or as you say 24/7.”

The press at CPAC is mostly home-grown, from state-run Hungarian media. Independent European and U.S. outlets were largely denied access, and CBS News was one of a small number allowed access to the conference.  Journalists from international media outlets, including the New Yorker, Vox Media, Vice News, Rolling Stone, and the Associated Press, were denied access to the event despite months of requests.

Are you starting to feel the chills going up your spine yet?  I do.

Let me tell you just a bit about Hungary’s Prime Minister Viktor Orbán.  He is a white supremacist authoritarian. He’s restricted Muslim immigration and LGBTQ rights while building a close relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin.  The former guy was a big fan of Orbán, saying …

“Viktor Orbán has done a tremendous job in so many different ways — highly respected, respected all over Europe — probably, like me, a little bit controversial, but that’s OK.”

I rarely repeat the words of the former guy, for in my book he is completely irrelevant, but I do so this time to give you an idea of the sort of person Orbán is … and believe me, he is not a good person and he is definitely NOT highly respected throughout Europe.

All of the international democracy rating agencies agree that Hungary is no longer a democracy.  During his 12 years in power, Orbán has chipped away at the foundations of Hungarian democracy. It has been replaced with an authoritarian regime that wields a cynical interpretation of the law as a weapon; the country is governed by rules like the border journalism permits, regulations that can seem reasonable on their face but actually serve to undermine essential democratic freedoms.

Elections there are free, in the sense that the vote counts aren’t nakedly rigged. But they are unfair: The government controls the airwaves and media companies to such a degree that the opposition can’t get their message out.

Viktor Orbán is an autocrat, he does not govern but he rules … and yes there is a difference, a BIG difference.  Orbán is, by any reasonable definition, a fascist, although some would argue he is merely a ‘soft fascist’.  Fascism … it’s a scary word, isn’t it?  The former guy made no attempt to hide the fact that he wanted to rule rather than govern, and he chipped away at the restraints that kept him, to an extent at least, from doing so.  He plotted not one, but three attempts to overthrow the will of the people in the 2020 election, to install himself as an unelected autocrat for … how long?  4 years?  6 years?  A lifetime?

The fact that CPAC chose to hold their annual convention in Hungary and more to the point to have Orbán as their main speaker should tell you all you need to know about the course being plotted by Republicans aka conservatives for the United States.  It’s an ugly picture my friends.  I’m not a scaremonger or a conspiracy theorist, but the Republican Party has been overtaken by a wanna-be dictator and they are falling all over themselves trying to lick his boots, to please him.  What does that say for the future of this nation?