The Conservative Curse of Gullibility

Y’know, folks, I really think Republicans should have to wear tinfoil hats so we can identify them and keep our distance! Jeff shares a post by Jerry, aka Grumpy, that will either make you laugh, growl, or at the very least shake your head! Thanks, Jeff & Jerry!!!

On The Fence Voters

Our good friend Jerry over at Grumpy’s Grumblings has a post that I’d like to share with you. I’ve included a link at the end to continue reading on his site. Thanks Jerry!

Ronald Reagan said, “The trouble with our liberal friends is not that they’re ignorant; it’s just that they know so much that isn’t so.” When he said that I absolutely agreed with him. Liberals live in a fantasyland where beliefs supersede facts, I believed. What my bias prevented me from seeing at the time was that what might be true, to some degree, of liberals was to a much greater degree true of me and my conservative compatriots.

Sure, every human tends to succumb to confirmation bias, but I’ve come to see that it’s also true that we can overcome those biased beliefs through open-mindedness and objective, fact-based education. And, as I’ve increasingly observed, liberals—generally being better…

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What Do You Want: Governance Or A Show?

There are many policy and ideological differences between the two major political parties in the U.S., but as I was reading an article yesterday, one came to me that I had not thought of before:  Democrats in Congress take lawmaking seriously, while for Republicans it is a game, a show.  Republican voters seem to require a circus … the most ludicrous, most outrageous and loudest candidate wins with the Republican voters.  Democratic voters, on the other hand, prefer old school staid, nose-to-the-grindstone politicians who they can trust to make laws that benefit the nation and its people.  Don’t believe me?  Let’s take a look at one issue that exemplifies what I just stated … the impeachment of Joe Biden et al.

Already, even without a majority in either House or Senate, knowing their efforts would come to naught, numerous impeachment resolutions have been filed against President Biden, the first one coming less than 24 hours after he took his oath of office on 20 January 2021.  That one, House Resolution #57,   was filed by mad dog Marge Greene, claiming that the President had committed “abuse of power by enabling bribery and other high crimes and misdemeanors.”  Wow … all that within less than a day of taking office!  Actually, she was referencing his time four years prior as Vice President, conjecturing something mysterious about his son, Hunter, and more of the right-wing conspiracy theories she’s picked up from her QAnon buddies and from watching the likes of Tucker Carlson over at Fox ‘News’.

Since that first resolution, there have been at least 8 more resolutions to impeach President Biden, and also one introduced by mad dog Greene’s best buddy, pistol mama Lauren Boebert, to impeach Vice President Kamala Harris!  And oh the irony here, but one of the bullet points in Boebert’s attempt to impeach Harris is that the Vice President “neglected her duties as Vice President by failing to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove President Biden from office due to his clear inability to effectively and competently handle his duties as Commander in Chief.”  Say WHAT???  Boebert wants to impeach the Vice President because she didn’t invoke the 25th Amendment?  OH THE IRONY!

None … not a single one … of these resolutions will lead to actual impeachment, for the Republicans don’t have the votes to get them through now, and in January when the next Congress is seated, these resolutions will all expire.  It’s not serious legislative work … it’s all for show, my friends.  The people whose salary YOU pay, wasted precious time and resources playing games that they knew had no actual meaning. They can then go back to their districts and yell and puff out their chests and say, “I wrote a resolution to impeach the President!” and their supporters will whistle, applaud, and cheer.  It is not governance, it is a circus.

And what should we look forward to come next year?  More of the same crap.  Already, they are gathering their resources, consulting with the Heritage Foundation, a Conservative ‘think tank’, and plotting ‘strategy’, such as it is.  They not only plan to impeach President Biden and Kamala Harris, but also Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas, Attorney General Merrick Garland, and Secretary of State Antony Blinken.  I seriously doubt they will be successful, and even if they are, I would not expect the Senate to convict and expel any of these from their positions, but these faux impeachments, along with other of their clownish antics, will keep this nation in perpetual turmoil for the next two years, which may well be the goal of the soulless Republican Party.

  • Democrats talk about enhanced voting rights; Republicans talk about impeaching the President
  • Democrats talk about expansion of renewable energy sources to help save life on Planet Earth; Republicans talk about impeaching the Attorney General
  • Democrats talk about gun regulations to cut down on violent crime; Republicans talk about impeaching the Vice-President
  • Democrats talk about human rights – LGBTQ rights, women’s rights, etc.; Republicans talk about impeaching the Secretary of Homeland Security

Do you begin to see a pattern here?  Once again, my friends, repeat after me:  Republicans do not want governance, they want a show.  Vote for them and that is all you’ll get … a horror show.

The Week’s Best Cartoons 10/15

I’ve opined enough for one week and my poor brain needs a rest, so let’s hop over to TokyoSand’s Political Charge where she has uncovered the best of the political cartoons from the past week!  Thank you, TS … much appreciated!!!

Be sure to check out the rest of the ‘toons!

Da Snark Just Keeps On Coming

Of late, I’ve been trying … well, sort of … to be less snarky than usual, more serious minded if you will.  But, as the late Popeye the Sailor famously said, “I yam what I yam.”  And what I yam seems to be snarky today, so instead of fighting it, I will go with the flow.


Do as I say, not as I do?

The ‘Christian Nationalist’ movement seems to have gained momentum in recent years.  I mean absolutely no disrespect toward those Christians who believe as they do, yet do not attempt to impose their will on everyone else.  The ones I am calling out here are those diehard Christian evangelicals who believe that they and they alone know all the answers and would force their will on us through a series of laws and punishments.  They have had some success already in stripping women of their right to make their own decisions about their health, and now they are targeting others, such as the LGBTQ community and the very history of this nation.  But here’s what’s interesting …

In the past two days, I have seen at least three news stories about Christian pastors sexually abusing children.

  • Gregory Adams, an Alabama pastor, started abusing four young girls when they were around 12 years old. Adams told one of his victims if she didn’t have sex with him, God would strike her down with lightning.
  • Jonathan High, a church deacon in Florida, was recently convicted of using children to produce the “hundreds, if not thousands” of child pornography photos found on his phone.
  • Shane E. Richardson, a youth pastor in Pennsylvania, raped at least one child under the age of 16. A youth pastor!!!

So … a woman who has an abortion or even takes oral contraceptives is a criminal, but those self-righteous Christians who would condemn that woman, support religious ‘leaders’ who abuse children.  Methinks those judgmental Christian sects better be cleaning up their own houses before commenting on ours!


Deserting a sinking ship … but who can blame him?

The Republican Party, formerly known as the “Grand Old Party” (GOP), has recently acquired numerous conspiracy theorists, fools, people who are against democracy, and idiots who can’t even write their own names without help.  So, it is sad and maybe alarming to see the few who were actually intelligent, viable human beings within the party, making a hasty exit.  It also speaks volumes about the credibility of today’s Republican Party.

Over the past two years, we have seen several of the better, more conscionable Republicans jump or be pushed off of the sinking ship.  Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney put the welfare of the nation ahead of their own careers and will be leaving Congress next January.  Justin Amash left the Republican Party in 2019.  Others, mainly those who are not willing to lick the boots of the former guy, who see the decay within the party, are retiring at the end of their term … among these are Senator Rob Portman.

Even so, my jaw dropped yesterday when I read that Senator Ben Sasse of Nebraska plans to resign from his seat in the U.S. Senate at the end of this year to accept a position as president of the University of Florida.  Sasse was, in my book, one of the better Republicans, one who had studied and understood the U.S. Constitution, one who still believed in the democratic foundations of this nation, and one who called out the former guy’s corruption, dishonesty and lack of knowledge, and in fact voted to convict him on the impeachment charges in 2021.

To be clear, I have disagreed with most of Sasse’s political positions such as women’s rights, LGBTQ rights, guns, healthcare, and more, however … he wasn’t a cheater.  He played by the rules and if he wasn’t in the majority in a vote, he accepted that and moved on.  THAT is what is lacking in today’s Republicans … they don’t even care about the illusion of playing by the rules … they seem to actually be proud of breaking the rules, of stripping We the People of our right to have a voice.  I understand why Sasse is leaving, and I wish him the best of luck at the University of Florida … and by my count there remain about 4 Republicans in Congress who still possess a conscience and believe that their Oath of Office actually means something.


A lunatic in human’s clothing

You’ve heard of a wolf in sheep’s clothing?  Well, this dude is a lunatic masquerading as a human.  His name is Larry Klayman and while he has crossed my radar a few times in the past, I always just chalked him up as another attention-seeking weirdo.  And he is just that, but he takes lunacy to the nth degree!  His latest is a scheme he has cooked up to convict President Biden of bribery (???) and says he will be asking the military to arrest the president!

Now, I could write an entire series of posts about the lunacy of this ‘man’ dating all the way back to the Clinton administration, but frankly he isn’t worth my time or yours.  Suffice it to say that I seriously believe he has something wrong inside his brain and to date, nobody has figured out how to stop him from his frivolous and ridiculous lawsuits.  The Southern Poverty Law Center described him as “pathologically litigious.”

Klayman has lost far more cases than he won, has been sanctioned and disciplined by the courts more than a few times, and last year had his license to practice law revoked for a period of 18 months, but still he persists in claiming he is going to have Biden arrested.  Good grief … his parents must have had some really strange DNA!!!


And to finish with a bit of humour … just a couple of ‘toons!

A Question To Ponder

I want to throw something out for discussion, and I’d really like your honest opinions here.  The question is when do we draw a line, or do we draw a line, on comments that cross a line?  I do not want to censor any comments, but in the past year or so, I have done so, particularly if the comment included extreme vulgarity or was disrespectful to my readers or myself.  When this blog morphed from one of mostly book reviews to a socio-political blog in 2015, I accepted that there would be some with opinions different than mine.  I still accept that, and I welcome it, for only by listening to one another can we possibly hope to understand each other.  These are troubled times all over the globe and we need to learn to listen, to meet halfway, but I think in order for such communication to have value, it must be done without rancor and with respect.

However, I recently banned one person from commenting on this blog because they could not seem to frame their disagreement without calling me vulgar names and being crass and disrespectful to other readers.  And now, I am faced with another who uses rhetoric as opposed to facts, whose opinions are just that, with no basis in reality, and on top of that who is disrespectful to us all.  My first inclination is to say, “Enough of this … I’m done with this person”.  But does that make me just like them, someone who is intolerant of those who don’t agree with them?

I’ve long said I welcome all opinions here, and I’m very conflicted about shutting some people out, and yet I also want this to be a safe haven to air opinions, not one where readers hesitate to comment for they may be called names or looked down upon by other readers.  And frankly, I have no time for propaganda and conspiracy theories … I’m far more interested in genuine opinions.

So … what do you guys think?  Should we continue to ‘grin & bear it’ in the interest of free speech and diversity of views, or is enough, enough?

Big Fat Liar

Well, ol’ Alex Jones, America’s #1 conspiracy theorist, finally had his day in Court and … it did not go well for Jones! I was going to write about it, but Clay Jones (no relation to Alex!) of Claytoonz has done it far better than I could have, and he even has a cartoon! Thanks, Clay — great job as always!

claytoonz

If you’re a gaslighting conspiracy theorist with a national platform spreading bullshit that defames, libels, and tears apart democracy, you better have good lawyers. Alex Jones, fortunately for the rest of us who hate lies, conspiracy theories, and bullshit, does not have good lawyers.

Alex Jones is a conspiracy theorist as it’s his business. He knows the bullshit he’s spreading is fake. Conspiracy theories are his business but lying is his nature. He’s also not intelligent enough to get away with it. Yesterday, Alex Jones was busted during cross-examination of not just being a liar, but of withholding evidence. And, the revelations came from his own legal team. Oopsies.

Jones (no relation to yours truly) is currently defending himself from defamation lawsuits brought by the families for lies he had spread about the 2012 school shooting. For years, he’s been telling lies that the shootings never happened. From his conspiracy…

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The Lies Are Deadly

My jaw dropped when I read the variety of reasons (or rather excuses, excuses, excuses) Republicans have come up with for mass shootings in the U.S.  Hint:  not a single one of them blames the problem on easy access to guns.  Among their reasons are:

  • Abortion (Fox ‘News’ host Mark Levin)
  • ‘Lecturing women’ (Fox ‘News’ host Tucker Carlson)
  • ‘Regular pot use’ (Fox ‘News’ host Laura Ingraham)

And yet another Fox host, Greg Gutfeld, claims that the way to stop mass shootings is to simply ignore them.  Yep, you heard right … he claims that if the media refuse to cover mass shootings, they will “decrease by 30%, 40%, 50%”.  Oh, to live in such a world of abject ignorance.

The tragedy is that some 30% of the people in this country actually watch Fox as their main new source, sometimes their only news source.  Those same people tend not to be college-educated, not to be deep thinkers, and to be easily swayed by rhetoric that plays on their emotions.  I know it’s not possible to simply shut Fox ‘News’ down, for that would be an infringement on the 1st Amendment, but I do wonder, if Fox went away tomorrow, how many minds could be awakened between now and November?  Enough, possibly, to make a real difference in the upcoming election and future elections, perhaps even enough to convince people to THINK on occasion.

The lies and conspiracy theories floating throughout the air waves pose a direct, distinct threat to the security of the nation and its people.  In April, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas announced the formation of a board to monitor national security threats caused by the spread of dangerous disinformation.  But alas, the Republicans went ape-shit crazy, calling it Orwellian and even some Democrats made the valid point questioning the powers that such an office might wield in the hands of future Republican administrations.  And so, the board has been ‘paused’, likely never to see the light of day again in this administration.

So, how DO we counter the lies and falsehoods, the conspiracy theories that have already led to violence and death?  If we cannot demand truth from all media outlets who call themselves ‘news’ outlets, and we cannot regulate the lies from within the government, what is left?  Education.  But we currently have too many states where the lies are infiltrating even our schools with the sanction and blessing of state governments.  Florida, for example, refuses to allow the teaching of concepts that could make students, “feel discomfort, guilt, anguish, or any form of psychological distress” for actions “committed in the past by other members of the same race, color, sex or national origin.”

So how in hell are we to educate the next generation if the current generation is too cowardly to face the truth.  Yes, slaves – people from the African continent, people with Black skin – were brought here in the 17th century and sold … yes, SOLD like property … to white men who used them to perform backbreaking labour and paid them nothing, but beat them half to death if they underperformed.  Yes, we turned away a ship, the MS St. Louis, filled with Jews seeking asylum from an evil anti-Semitic dictator and sent many of them to their subsequent deaths.  And yes, this nation’s white government stole both property and freedom from Japanese-American citizens during World War II simply because they were of Japanese ethnicity.  And the very worst was the first … when white people first arrived on this land, they murdered and stole the land of the Indigenous People who were here long before white men came here seeking asylum from tyranny.  Isn’t it ironic that they inflicted the same treatment, only worse, on people that they themselves were fleeing?

Do you see a trend here?  Black people, Jews, Japanese, Indigenous … BIGOTRYRACISM!  But yet, we are not to teach our children of these events and many, many more because it might “make them feel guilt.”  Let them feel guilt!  Let them at least try to put things to right, to make up for the crimes of their ancestors, to strive for a better nation, one where EVERYONE is welcome and treated equally! A world where justice doesn’t mean something entirely different for Black people than it means for white people. But instead, we are to allow them to grow up as ignorant as their parents are … more so, actually, for the parents know the truth but choose willful ignorance over intelligent thought.

I know what the ultimate solution to the dangerous lies and conspiracy theories will ultimately have to be, and so do you if you think about it, but it is not the one I would have chosen.  It is a battle I once thought we had already won.

The Real “Great Replacement” Already Happened

I’ve got a sad story to tell those people who have tied themselves to the lie known as the “Great Replacement theory” … the replacement has already happened.  Oh no, not in the way you think … white people are still a relevant portion of the population in the United States, and unfortunately, they still largely hold the reins of power … white males do, at least.  But the replacement happened many years ago … let me tell you the story.


The story begins in the year 1492 when there were an estimated 10 million people living in an area of land that is now known as the United States.  A Spanish explorer named Cristoforo Colombo stumbled onto a land mass he mistakenly thought was the East Indies, and thus he described the natives he met as “Indians”.  On his first day, he ordered six natives to be seized as servants.

Fast forward to the year 1620 when white European settlers arrived on ‘American’ shores hungry for land—and the abundant natural resources that came with it.  Now, the Indigenous People, the native tribes, saw themselves as stewards of the land, not owners, but the Europeans wanted to own the land.  Forget those cutesy little stories you learned in 1st grade about the Natives and the Europeans sharing that 1st Thanksgiving dinner.  Wake up to the reality … the white men wanted the land, the resources, and to turn the Natives into their slaves.  Over the next 200+ years, they worked hard to accomplish that goal.

The Gnadenhutten Massacre, 1782
Archive Photos/Getty Images

I have neither the time nor energy to give a full history lesson, but in a nutshell, the white men established a ‘government’ that would authorize some 1,500 wars, attacks and raids on the Natives, the most of any country in the world against its Indigenous people.  By the close of the Indian Wars in the late 19th century, fewer than 238,000 Indigenous people remained in the nation now known as the United States, a mere fraction of the 10 million who once made their homes here.

White Americans often feared and resented the Native Americans they encountered. To them, Native Americans seemed to be an unfamiliar, alien people who occupied land that white settlers wanted (and wrongly believed they deserved).

Execution of Dakota Sioux Indians in Mankato, Minnesota, 1862
Library of Congress/Photo12/UIG/Getty Images

In 1830, President Andrew Jackson signed into law the Indian Removal Act, which gave the federal government the power to exchange Native-held land in the cotton kingdom east of the Mississippi for land to the west, in the “Indian colonization zone” that the United States had acquired as part of the Louisiana Purchase. (This “Indian territory” was located in present-day Oklahoma.)  Indigenous Peoples were forced to vacate the land they had lived on for generations, and in the winter of 1831 the Choctaw became the first nation to be expelled from its land altogether. They made the journey to Indian Territory on foot, some bound in chains and without any food, supplies or other help from the government. Thousands of people died along the way. It was, one Choctaw leader told an Alabama newspaper, a “trail of tears and death.”

A painting depicting the Trail of Tears, when Native Americans were forced by law to leave their homelands and move to designated territory in the west Al Moldvay/The Denver Post via Getty Images

The Indian-removal process continued with the Creeks and then the Cherokees.  By 1840, tens of thousands of Native Americans had been driven off of their land in the southeastern states and forced to move across the Mississippi to Indian Territory. The federal government promised that their new land would remain unmolested forever, but as the line of white settlement pushed westward, “Indian Country” shrank and shrank. In 1907, Oklahoma became a state and Indian Territory was gone for good.

Burial of the dead after the massacre of Wounded Knee

That, my friends, was the unconscionable ‘great replacement’ and it was perpetuated by the ancestors of the very people who are spreading lies and conspiracy theories about an attempt to ‘replace’ white people.  What white people did to the Indigenous People of this nation was nothing short of genocide.  Today’s ‘great replacement theory’ is a stupid, nonsensical lie, but also a very dangerous one. People without adequate intellect or education to see through the lie are buying into it, hence the shooting spree that killed 10 and wounded 3 others in Buffalo, New York last weekend.  Next time you hear somebody whine that there is a plot afoot to ‘replace’ white people in this country, tell them this true tale about the real replacement that took place at the hands of their own ancestors.

Are We All Gullible?

While conspiracy theories have always been around, they have seemingly run rampant of late, the one with the most adherents being the Big Lie that the election was “stolen” from the former guy.  And remember Margie Greene’s belief in the QAnon theory that it was Russian space lasers or some such nonsense that started the 2020 California wildfires?  Now, I and most of the people reading this blog are too intelligent to fall for these off-the-wall conspiracy theories, right?  Let’s find out!  The Washington Post has a short (just 6 multiple choice questions), fun quiz to see just how savvy we are about facts vs conspiracy theories.  I took this quiz … it really is short and only took less than 5 minutes … and I did miss one!  😱

Check it out here and let me know how you did … and see if you can guess which one I missed!

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.