The Week’s Best Cartoons: Texas’ Abortion Ban

I haven’t re-blogged TokyoSand’s Saturday cartoon post for the past two weeks, for there is so much deeply wrong in this country today that the cartoons seemed to somehow fall flat with me.  However, given my own malaise and the primary topic of this week’s cartoons — women’s rights, which is near and dear to my own heart — I’ve decided to re-blog this week’s post.  The main topic, of course, is the new Texas law, currently upheld by the white-male-dominant Supreme Court, that has set women’s rights back a hundred years or more.  And then, there’s climate change — no longer is it possible to reject the science of climate change when we’re had uncontrollable wildfires, floods, and mega-storms, not to mention killer heat all summer long.  So, sit back and enjoy the ‘toons … you’ll find the entire collection over at Tokyo’s place (link at end).

Note to readers:  I have been having health issues for some 3 weeks now and my energy levels are on a roller coaster ride, mostly at the bottom of the track.  Therefore, I have not posted much and have not responded to comments at all, nor am I likely to try to catch up at this point.  I have read all comments, and appreciate those of you who have helped out by keeping the conversations going.  I shall pick up here and try not to fall behind again.  I appreciate your patience and apologize for my laziness.


See The Rest Of The ‘Toons Here!

We Don’t Need More Babies!!!!

I saw an article headline in the New York Times this morning …

Who Has the Cure for America’s Declining Birthrate? Canada.

A number of things went spinning through my mind, but the dominating thought was – why does our declining birth rate need or deserve a cure???  All things considered, this world does not need any more humans hellbent on destroying our precious resources!  It seems, especially of late, that there is a taint in the gene pool here in the U.S. that more and more of our population are affected with TS – Terminal Stupidity.

Rather than trying to increase an already hefty population, let’s focus on educating the ones we have!  In fact, I would advocate sterilization for every single individual who blatantly refuses to be vaccinated or to wear a mask.  They are the breeders of TS.

And then there’s the environment.  At the current rate which we are ignoring the dire warnings of the scientific community and the IPCC, human life on this planet cannot possibly last past the end of the century, likely not even that long.  So … WHY does anybody think it’s a good idea to bring more lives onto the planet to suffer the devastating effects that are going to take place in the coming years???  What a cruel thing to do!  Over the next generation or two, there will be food and water scarcity, devastating fires, droughts, floods.

Rather than try to boost the birthrate, I say we make birth control free and widely available, same with abortions.  It is unconscionable to keep piling people on top of people who have no future.  We, humans, have no future and we have only ourselves to blame.  Don’t subject even more people to a slow, painful, drawn-out death.

Now, some of you may argue that one of those new lives could be the very person who grows up to find a way to save the planet.  And there was a time that would have been my view as well.  However, as I watch those with TS parading around doing far more harm than good, even to their own loved ones, I realize that if we were handed a solution on a silver platter today, there are far too many affected by TS who would rebel, who would refuse to make whatever sacrifices were needed on their part, for it would, in their book, “infringe on their freedoms”.  They would sooner see this planet crash and burn than to make some small effort to help save it, so no matter how brilliant the plan to save the planet might be, the TS bunch will stomp on it.

Sorry, folks, but my faith in the goodness of human nature is gone.  Done.  When I see a parent ripping the mask off of a teacher, see hordes of people cheering a madman who has done more than his share to add to the destruction of not only this nation, but the world, and see a motorcycle rally where not one lousy person of the thousands in attendance is wearing a mask, despite the surge in both new cases and deaths, despite the new Lambda variant on the horizon, then I know there isn’t much hope for rallying the crowd in a huge effort to save the planet.  Let the birth rate continue to decline.  It’s for the best.

And for those of you who haven’t yet had the joy of grandchildren … buy a puppy.  They’re cuter, much more low-maintenance, cheaper to feed, and loyal.

Gone! Poof!

This is Greenville, California, just a few short weeks ago …

This is Greenville, California, today …

Quite a change, yes?  A whole town … gone.  What you are seeing is the devastation left behind by the Dixie fire, now listed as the state’s 2nd largest fire in California’s history.  What you are seeing is a result of the coal and oil industries and their purchased members of Congress who have blocked efforts to switch from fossil fuels to renewable sources.  What you are seeing is the result of centuries of wanton disregard for our forests, our wetlands, our natural resources.  What you are seeing is the destruction of life on planet earth by … well, the human inhabitants of planet earth … yes, YOU and ME.

To date, 361,000 acres have been laid to waste by the Dixie fire.  361,000 acres!!!  Don’t look away, don’t get that glazed look in your eyes … this is … this is our planet, my friends!!!  These are trees, the wildlife that live within and around the trees, GONE!  DEAD!!!  People have died, homes and lives have been destroyed!  And as of yesterday, it was only 21% contained, meaning that more trees, more wildlife will die, more homes and people’s lives will be destroyed.

Today is August 9th.  The Dixie fire started on July 13th, nearly one month ago, and is still burning out of control, devouring and destroying everything and everyone in its path.  And this is not the only such fire, though it is the largest today.  California and Oregon are on fire, parts of Greece and Turkey are afire.  The world is literally burning around us, while we drive our gas-guzzling SUVs one mile or less to the trash dumpster, while we keep our thermostats set at a comfortable 70°, and while we plan our vacations … to fly to the Grand Canyon … if it isn’t on fire, that is.

Someday perhaps scientists will be able to estimate just how many lions, bears, wolves, condors and other critters died this year as a result of our greed and arrogance, but for now, suffice it to say that humans have single-handedly brought about the extinction of many species with their superiority complex, with their ignorance of the way nature works, and with their belief that their happiness is tantamount to all else.

Look at those before and after pictures again.  Imagine that one of those homes was once yours, imagine that you lost every single damn thing you ever owned, including the pets with whom you shared your life.  If you can, look at those pictures, imagine the people … the population of Greenville was, at last count, just over 1,000 … now without homes, without … anything.  😔

Access to Clean, Safe Drinking Water: A Racial Justice Issue

One of the most basic human needs is … water. Without it, we die … it’s that simple. Brendan over at Blind Injustice has written a post to remind us first of the importance of potable water, and second, how water supplies around the globe, and yes even here in the U.S., are diminishing. Thanks, Brendan, for a wake-up-call post we should all be reminded of.

Blind Injustice

An image of water. Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

When some of us (particularly those of us of means) in the United States think of places that lack access to clean drinking water, we think of certain countries on the African continent. And, it is true that parts of Africa struggle to access even the most basic of water services—nine of the ten worst countries in the world in terms of access to clean water are located on that continent.[1]

However, I am concerned that many of us may be blind to issues of water access at home, in the United States of America. Furthermore, I am concerned that many of us may be blind about how this access to water is a racial justice issue.

Sure, a major report on the water crisis in Flint, Michigan, a few years ago cited systemic racism as being at the core…

View original post 334 more words

Lolla-Pa-Whazzit???

Take a look at the above picture.  How many people do you see wearing a mask?  Look how close the people are.  Social distancing?  HAH!  I think not!  This was the scene at the 4-day music festival in Chicago called Lollapalooza held this past weekend.  Approximately 100,000 people attended each of the four days.  To attend, people had to either provide a Covid-19 vaccine card or proof of a negative Covid-19 test from the previous 72 hours.  Big f*cking deal.  This event should not have even been held, but to allow nearly a half-million people during the event to mix and mingle sans masks is the height of stupidity.

My daughter is a member of the Cincinnati Caledonian Pipes and Drums band, and as such they typically play at 15-20 events in the eastern half of the U.S. and Canada each year, including a Winter Storm festival in St. Louis, Missouri, in January.  All but one of their events this year was cancelled, and the Winter Storm festival for next January has already been cancelled due to the pandemic.  Yes, the organizers and sponsors of these events are losing money, but they value human life over profit.

Infectious disease expert Dr. Tina Tan said: “When you have 100,000 or more people who are in a fairly enclosed space and there’s no social distancing, the vast majority are not wearing masks, you are going to get some transmission of Covid-19 Delta variant.”

It has already been proven that even if you are fully vaccinated, you can transmit the virus.  Even if you are fully vaccinated, you can catch the virus and become ill.  Doesn’t it just make sense to stay home???  Oh … there’s that word again … ‘sense’ … a lot of people seem to have none.

Chicago is already averaging more than 200 new cases per day, a significant increase from a few months ago. It could be two to three weeks before the effect of Lollapalooza on the city’s case rate is known, and there is also concern about people who visited the city for the festival taking the virus back home with them.  Picture the parents who attended, leaving their children behind with Grandma and Grandpa …  “Oh look, kids, I brought you souvenirs from the festival and one other thing … a killer virus!”

A reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times asked the question, “Why was Lollapalooza allowed to go forward?”  Easy answer … $$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$

The average cost of a ticket was $545, and that did not include food, drinks, souvenirs, parking, etc.  Multiply that times 100,000 people.  Let me save you the trouble … over $54 million.  Hell no, they weren’t going to give that up, no matter how many deaths may come as a result.

I have long lamented that the human species seems determined to bring about its own extinction and this event is further proof to support my premise.  Climate change, chemicals in our food, plastic in our oceans, nuclear weapons, and so much more … all man-made disasters that, if we don’t wake up and work toward fixing the problem, will render this earth uninhabitable not only by humans, but by thousands of species.  And now … the utter greed and stupidity of people as a response to the pandemic that has already killed more than 4 million people worldwide.

Way to go, humans.

Now Is The Time … Maybe The Last Chance

There was a time when I would have eschewed the very notion of socialism.  A time I didn’t understand the evil that humans are capable of.  A time I thought that ‘right’ would win out over ‘might’.  Over the years, the decades, the rose-coloured glasses have broken to pieces, and the naiveté eroded from my psyche.  Today, I see the human species clearly as it is, and as such, a true democratic socialist state holds much appeal for me.  Senator Bernie Sanders from Vermont has, in my view, all the right ideas for what this … or any nation … should be.  Can we get there?  Bernie thinks so.  What follows is the column he wrote for publication in The Guardian on Wednesday … his words make a heck of a lot of sense, at least to me.


The biggest win for the working class in generations is within reach
By Bernie Sanders

Wednesday, July 21, 2021

Now is the time.

At a time when the gap between the very rich and everyone else is growing wider, when two people now own more wealth than the bottom 40% and when some of the wealthiest people and biggest businesses in the world pay nothing in federal income taxes, the billionaire class and large profitable corporations must finally start paying their fair share of taxes.

Now is the time.

At a time when real wages for workers have not gone up in almost 50 years, when over half our people live paycheck to paycheck, when over 90 million Americans are uninsured or underinsured, when working families cannot afford childcare or higher education for their kids, when many Americans no longer believe their government represents their interests, the U.S. Congress must finally have the courage to represent the needs of working families and not just the 1% and their lobbyists.

Now is the time.

At a time of unprecedented heatwaves, drought, flooding, extreme weather disturbances and the acidification of the oceans, now is the time for the US government to make certain that the planet we leave our children and future generations is healthy and habitable. We must stand up to the greed of the fossil fuel industry, transform our energy system and lead the world in combating climate change.

As chairman of the U.S. Senate Budget Committee I fought hard for a $6 trillion budget which would address these and other long-neglected needs. Not everyone in the Democratic caucus agreed with me and, after a lot of discussion and compromise within the budget committee, an agreement was reached on a smaller number. (Needless to say, no Republicans will support legislation which taxes the rich and protects working families.)

While this budget is less than I had wanted, let us be clear. This proposal, if passed, will be the most consequential piece of legislation for working people, the elderly, the children, the sick and the poor since FDR and the New Deal of the 1930s. It will also put the U.S. in a global leadership position as we combat climate change. Further, and importantly, this legislation will create millions of good-paying jobs as we address the long-neglected needs of working families and the planet.

Why is this proposal so significant?

We will end the days of billionaires not paying a nickel in federal income taxes by making sure the wealthy and large corporations do not use their accountants and lawyers to avoid paying the massive amounts that they owe. This proposal will also raise the individual tax rate on the wealthiest Americans and the corporate tax rate for the most profitable companies in our country. Under this proposal, no family making under $400,000 a year will pay a nickel more in taxes and will, in fact, receive one of the largest tax cuts in American history.

We will aggressively reduce our childhood poverty rate by expanding the child tax credit so that families continue to receive monthly direct payments of up to $300 per child.

We will address the crisis in childcare by fighting to make sure that no working family pays more than 7% of their income on this basic need. Making childcare more accessible and affordable will also strengthen our economy by allowing millions more Americans (mostly women) to join the workforce.

We will provide universal pre-kindergarten to every three- and four-year-old.

We will end the international disgrace of the United States being the only major country on Earth not to guarantee paid family and medical leave as a right.

We will begin to address the crisis in higher education by making community colleges in America tuition-free.

We will address the disgrace of widespread homelessness in the United States and the reality that nearly 18 million households are paying over 50% of their incomes for housing by an unprecedented investment in affordable housing.

We will ensure that people in an aging society can receive the home health care they need and that the workers who provide that care aren’t forced to live on starvation wages.

We will save taxpayers hundreds of billions by having Medicare negotiate prescription drug prices with the pharmaceutical industry and use those savings to cover the dental care, hearing aids and eyeglasses that many seniors desperately need.

We will rebuild our crumbling roads, bridges, water systems, wastewater treatment plants, broadband and other aspects of our physical infrastructure.

We will take on the existential threat of climate change by transforming our energy systems away from fossil fuels and toward renewable energy.

This effort will include a nationwide clean energy standard that moves our transportation system, electrical generation, buildings and housing and agriculture sector toward clean energy.

Through a Civilian Climate Corps we will give hundreds of thousands of young people good-paying jobs and educational benefits as they help us combat climate change.

We will fight to bring undocumented people out of the shadows and provide them with a pathway to citizenship, including those who courageously kept our economy running in the middle of a deadly pandemic.

In the midst of the many long-ignored crises that this legislation is attempting to address, we will not have one Republican senator voting for it. Tragically, many Republican leaders in Congress and around the country are just too busy continuing to lie about the 2020 presidential election, undermining democracy by suppressing voting rights, denying the reality of climate change and casting doubts about the efficacy of the Covid-19 vaccines.

That means that the 50 Democrats in the US Senate, plus the vice-president, will have to pass this most consequential piece of legislation alone. And that’s what we will do. The future of working families is at stake. The future of our democracy is at stake. The future of our planet is at stake.

Now is the time.

Listen to Bernie, my friends … he has the right ideas to take this nation in a positive direction.

What A Tragic Waste!!!

I’ve made no secret of my feelings about millionaires and billionaires who hoard their wealth rather than using it to help people in need.  I’ve also made no secret of my feelings about space travel in this, the 21st century, but in case you missed it, I think it is a complete and total waste of resources.  Combine the two, and you have a very pissed off Filosofa!  Every night, thousands of children around the world go to bed hungry.  Every day, people are dying of diseases that could have been prevented, if only they had access to affordable healthcare.  People are living in their cars, under overpasses on highways.  Some people are working 2-3 jobs just to ensure their children have enough to eat.  And this nation spends millions, billions to play Buzz Lightyear.  NASA’s budget for 2021 is $23.3 billion!  Imagine how many people could eat for a month for that amount of money.

I am equally galled, perhaps even more so, by private citizens playing Star Wars with their billions, rather than using their good fortune to help those less fortunate.  And yes, folks, it is simply good fortune.  No, hard work did not earn those billionaires their billions … most of them were born with silver spoons in their mouths, played their cards right and invested wisely, and now they … literally … own the damn world!  And even if they had slaved in the fields from sunup to sundown to earn their wealth, it is unconscionable to throw it away on ego trips when people ‘round the globe are starving.

I am referring, of course specifically to three people — Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon, Richard Branson, an uber-wealthy businessman, and Elon Musk, founder of Tesla … three men whose combined wealth could raise the entire planet out of poverty and who have made their wealth from the blood, sweat and tears of the average Joe!  But rather than use their wealth for such things as helping improve the environment, helping people out of poverty, helping provide medical care in this era of the pandemic, they prefer to build toys and play with them.  What is accomplished by their trip to space?  Not. One. Damned. Thing.

Turns out, I am not alone in my disgust, as several others have similar complaints.

I also saw at least one comment claiming that these men were doing ‘great’ things and opening new frontiers for the human race.  Excuse me, folks, but humans will never life on other planets or in outer space.  Oh sure, they may waste billions more dollars developing controlled-environments in small spaces, but that’s not living.  No other planet besides Earth has the resources … little things like breathable air, potable water, arable soil … to support life as we know it, so all the space exploration is NOT going to provide us a second option when we complete the destruction of Planet Earth!  It is a waste of time, energy, and money … resources that could be used to end hunger, eradicate most diseases, and help repair the damage we have so selfishly done to our environment.  Damn Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos, and Elon Musk.  These are NOT good men, you will never see them on one of my ‘good people’ posts!

A #SaturdaySong Revised

This morning’s music post is a bit different … I’m re-blogging our friend Clive’s post from a few days ago. The song is Barry McGuire’s Eve of Destruction, one that I have played a few times here, and was planning to play again. Sadly, we humans never learn and seem to keep the world … on the eve of destruction.

I chose to re-blog Clive’s post for a few reasons. One, his includes some interesting and fun personal memories. Two, he presents some fascinating trivia that I wasn’t aware of. And three … he not only makes it interesting, plays good music, but he makes it fun, too! Thanks, Clive, for your generous permission to share your post!

Take It Easy

Earlier this week, my good blogging friend Jim sent me a link to a blog by Marla, who I’d not come across before. He did so because she had posted an article which included a song that means a lot to me, and he remembered that I had posted it myself. Indeed I had, in Tuesday Tunes 52. But this reminded me that I had also written a longer piece about it in my #SaturdaySongs series and, as I’ve recently shared a couple of those with you, this seemed like my cue for another. These date back to 2016 when I knew few of you who are actively following me these days, so I’m fairly sure that this will be a new one for you. This is that post, from 29.10.16 – as ever, I’ll return at the end for a few closing words (though probably not words…

View original post 1,018 more words

On Fire, Once Again …

Just like last year and the year before, wildfires are raging out of control in the Western states such as California, Oregon, and to a lesser extent, Washington.  One such in Oregon has been named the Bootleg Fire, presumably for the shape of the path of destruction it is leaving.

By now, there can be no doubt … NO DOUBT … that these fires are as a result of humans’ complete disregard of the environment for more than a century, leading to what we now know as ‘climate change’. However, the people in a swath of towns along the fire’s likely trajectory remain deniers of man-made climate change.  Though urged by fire officials to evacuate the area, despite having to spend days and nights under a thick blanket of smoke, water down their yards and watch the wind for signs that the flames may be shifting, they are adamant that their god is protecting them and will continue to do so.  I am reminded of that age-old joke …

A fellow was stuck on his rooftop in a flood. He was praying to God for help.

Soon a man in a rowboat came by and the fellow shouted to the man on the roof, “Jump in, I can save you.”

The stranded fellow shouted back, “No, it’s OK, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me.”

So the rowboat went on.

Then a motorboat came by. “The fellow in the motorboat shouted, “Jump in, I can save you.”

To this the stranded man said, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the motorboat went on.

Then a helicopter came by and the pilot shouted down, “Grab this rope and I will lift you to safety.”

To this the stranded man again replied, “No thanks, I’m praying to God and he is going to save me. I have faith.”

So the helicopter reluctantly flew away.

Soon the water rose above the rooftop and the man drowned. He went to Heaven. He finally got his chance to discuss this whole situation with God, at which point he exclaimed, “I had faith in you but you didn’t save me, you let me drown. I don’t understand why!”

To this God replied, “I sent you a rowboat and a motorboat and a helicopter, what more did you expect?”

Says one resident of Sprague River, Oregon, a young pastor named Matt Wolff …

“We prayed a lot, ‘Lord, just keep it away.’ And so far it stayed that way.”

According to an article in The Washington Post

The West has been beset by historic drought and heat waves this year exacerbated by climate change, but among the small towns that have been threatened by the Bootleg Fire — Sprague River, Beatty, Bly — there is little talk of global warming. Instead, residents vent about the federal government’s water policies and forest management. They blame liberal environmentalists for hobbling the logging industry and Mexican marijuana farmers for sucking up the area’s water.

A classic case of “Shoot the messenger”?  Another local, Jim Rahi, opines …

“Now the top end of the Forest Service are a bunch of flower children. That’s what the real problem is. It’s not that much hotter. It’s environmentally caused mismanagement.”

Oh yeah, blame the people trying to fix the problem, trying to save lives.

Scientists agree that climate change driven by the human burning of fossil fuels has raised the Earth’s temperature an average of about 2 degrees Fahrenheit, a warming that has led to more frequent and extreme natural disasters. Some 800 people died in the recent record-breaking heat waves in the Pacific Northwest and Canada.

About 70 percent of Klamath Count where the Bootleg Fire is raging voted for the former guy last year, and residents often echo his skepticism on the topic.  The thing that puzzles me is … these aren’t bad people … many have volunteered their days at community centers and fairgrounds packing up produce and canned goods to distribute to those displaced and now sleeping on cots or inside churches.  No, they are not bad people, not evil, but ever so close-minded, unwilling to consider facts that may be beyond what they know of the world thus far.  It is one thing to be ignorant, meaning not to have or know the facts, but quite another to be stupid, to deny the facts even when the evidence is singeing your back door and likely to take the lives of your family while you point fingers at all the wrong people.

With over 220,000 acres burned thus far, the Bootleg Fire is the largest in North America at the moment, though fire season lasts another two months.

On Wednesday evening, a few dozen Sprague River residents gathered at the community center for an update on the situation, as the arrow on the fire meter outside pointed to “extreme.” Men and women openly carried pistols on their belts; one man wore a cutoff T-shirt that read “Protected: The Right to Bear Arms.”  So … WHAT???  Do they think they can shoot the fire out??? Or maybe they will find somebody else to blame and shoot them?  I shake my head in disgust that now, at a time when their homes and livelihood, their very lives are endangered, they’re more concerned about their guns and their “right” to carry them wherever they go, to use them to intimidate others.  Welcome to the United States of America, a nation I once thought I knew but now realize I never did.

My heart goes out to all the people in the areas that are affected or threatened by wildfire this year, and I hope they all keep safe, but I would urge them to use those brains for something other than keeping their skull from caving in and heed the warnings to evacuate.  And for the rest of us … not just in the U.S., but around the world … it’s obviously well past time for us to take the environment seriously, to stop driving gas guzzling cars wherever we go, to turn the thermostat down, to turn off the lights, and to support government policies and politicians who are working to protect and repair the planet rather than those who are still living in a state of denial.  If we don’t, we may live to see the world burn down around us.

The Week’s Best Cartoons 7/17

I haven’t re-blogged TokyoSand’s weekly cartoon posts for the past couple of weeks because the ‘toons seemed just too dark.  Not TS’ fault at all, but just a statement of the way things are these days … it’s hard to find humour in things some days.  However, I found this week’s to be grin-worthy and wanted to share them with you. This is just a sampling, so be sure to head over to TokyoSand’s place to see the rest!  Many thanks, TS, for all you do in always finding us the best and most relevant ‘toons!

See All The ‘Toons Here!