Just A Few Of The Ol’ Snarky Snippets

Once again, I have no single topic in mind, but a number of things are bouncing about in my head … have you noticed this seems to be happening a lot lately?  Hmmmm … I wonder if I’m trying to cram too much into my head and bits of this and pieces of that just keep getting embedded.


Fuel prices – no, Republicans can’t ‘fix’ the problem

Republicans point to specific targets they know are personal for many voters, such as fuel prices, and say, “Look how much you’re paying for a gallon of gasoline!  Elect Republicans and we’ll fix the problem.”  Well, sorry, folks, but Republicans cannot ‘fix’ the ‘problem’.  Gas prices are not set by the president nor by Congress, as they would have you believe.  To a large extent, fuel prices are driven by us, the consumers.  You’ve all studied the “law of supply and demand” in school, and as long as demand exceeds supply, the oil producers have the upper hand.  Supply is driven by a number of things but is often manipulated by OPEC to ensure that the bottom doesn’t fall out of the market, that the oil companies will continue to rake in profits.  Anyone, including Kevin McCarthy, who tells you otherwise is lying to you.  If you really want to do your part to help bring down oil prices, drive less, turn your thermostat down and don a sweater, skip the vacation this year and have a ‘staycation’, turn some lights out (candlelight is more romantic anyway, though admittedly it makes it hard to read).  Lower your demand, and the market will respond.  Yes, this is a simplification and there are other factors as well, but We the People don’t have much control over the war in Ukraine, the impending rail strike, or other global issues affecting fuel supplies, while we do have a degree of control in how much fuel we use.  Once again, we have met the enemy and he is us.


Angry at 18???

I’m thinking back to when I was 18 years old … I didn’t hate anybody.  I loved hanging out with friends when I wasn’t either studying or working, was saving up for a newer car (at the time, circa 1969, I drove a ’56 Chevrolet Bel Air that I had paid $50 for), had a boyfriend, learned to hot wire a car and occasionally ‘borrowed’ my dad’s car when my parents were out of town, but I didn’t have an abundance of raw anger, didn’t hate anyone.

On May 14th, an 18-year-old man (boy?) bought a gun, traveled 200 miles from his home in Conklin, New York, to Buffalo, entered a supermarket and killed 10 people in cold blood simply because they were Black.  18 years old!!!  WHY does a kid that age hate Black people?  Both of his parents are civil engineers, and he was studying engineering science, hoping to follow in their footsteps.  This wasn’t some spur-of-the-moment thing … he had traveled to Buffalo in March and visited the store, and again the day before he went on his killing spree.  He graduated from high school in June 2021, and when a teacher asked him about his plans for the future, he replied, “I want to murder and commit suicide.”  Was that not a red flag???  Why wasn’t it reported and followed up on?

Yesterday, the gunman pleaded guilty to 15 charges, including 10 charges of murder and one charge of domestic terrorism.  While I am thankful that he will likely never walk free again to murder even more, I think this entire situation shows a pathetic negligence to recognize and identify a serious mental health issue.  It also furthers my position that guns are too damned easy to obtain in this country!  Next thing you know, they’ll be packaging derringers (very small, but lethal guns) as the prize in packages of Cracker Jacks!


Some honest Republicans?  Be still my heart …

Maricopa Country in Arizona is home to over half the population of the entire state!  So, what happens there matters … a lot.  I was encouraged last night to read that the Republican-controlled election board voted unanimously to certify the November 8th election, whereby Democrat Katie Hobbs won the governorship.  Hobbs’ Republican opponent, the conspiracy-theorist, Trump-backed Republican Kari Lake, insists that Republican voters were denied the opportunity to vote, that there was some irregularity with voting machines, and … ho hum … same ol’ same ol’ … we’ve heard it before and no doubt we’ll hear it again.  Other counties have put their certification on hold based on Lake’s claims, but I find it very encouraging that the largest county by far has certified the election.


And just a handful of ‘toons to add to the fun!

Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr

A short one this morning, an excerpt from Robert Hubbell’s latest newsletter regarding the news that both OPEC and Russia intend to reduce oil production.  We all know that means higher prices at the pump, and while this should not be the highest priority on people’s minds as we head into the November mid-term elections, it probably will be.  People ought to be more concerned with the environment, the state of democracy, and human rights, but nope … they are more focused on how much it costs them to drive their gas-guzzling SUVs all over the place because, as one ‘friend’ told me, “it’s my happiness that matters most.”  Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr


Putin’s War Tax on Americans

Saudi Arabia gave Russia a huge gift on Wednesday by coordinating a two million barrel per day reduction in oil production among OPEC oil producers. The effect of Saudi Arabia’s decision is to thwart the efforts by the Group of 7 nations to place a cap on the market price of Russian oil. Saudi Arabia’s decision will drive up oil prices, which Russia will use to fund its war against Ukraine. See NYTimes, The E.U.’s plan faces a new hurdle, as oil producers led by Saudi Arabia aim to keep global prices high.

          To state the obvious, neither Saudi Arabia nor Russia is a friend of the US or western democracy. Indeed, both are dictatorial, murderous regimes that ruthlessly suppress their people and seek to destabilize global peace and security. And both are darlings of the GOP and Fox “News.” Tucker Carlson claimed on Tuesday that Joe Biden blew up Nord Stream gas pipelines—an act of sabotage that occurred as Russian submarines and warships were spotted lurking near the points of attack on the pipelines.

          And, of course, the GOP’s mob boss welcomed Saudi Arabia’s blood money at his Bedminster golf course only weeks before the twenty-first remembrance of the victims of the Saudi-assisted terrorist attacks on 9/11. Trump provided a feeble excuse for “sports-washing” the Saudi involvement, saying, “Nobody’s gotten to the bottom” of responsibility for the terror attacks—a blatant lie.

          The effort also seems intended to meddle in US and European politics. It is only a matter of time before Republicans begin blaming Joe Biden and Democrats for the increase in gas prices—rather than acknowledging that the increases are directly attributable to Saudi Arabia’s efforts to prop up Vladimir Putin. Don’t let Republicans peddle that lie without challenge. Saudi Arabia has just imposed a “Putin war tax” on all Americans.

First Snarky Snippets Of The Month!

I’ve got a load of snark I need to get rid of, for it’s keeping me awake nights and spoiling my appetite for food!  So, you know what that means … SNARKY SNIPPETS!


Okay, folks … so everyone wants to talk about the price at the pump, eh?  Well, I’m pretty fed up with hearing the constant egging on of angst by certain Republican politicos who are all too happy to lay the blame at President Biden’s doorstep, even though they know where the blame actually lies.  This snippet from the July 29th edition of the New York Times tells you everything you need to know about why the price of fuel is so high …

Exxon Mobil and Chevron, the two largest energy companies in the United States, said on Friday that profits rose to record levels in the second quarter as they continued to reap the benefits of soaring oil and gas prices.

Exxon reported income of $17.9 billion for the three months through June, more than three times what it earned in the same quarter a year ago. Revenue at the energy giant jumped to $115.6 billion, from $67.7 billion a year ago. Chevron’s performance was similar, with profit more than tripling to $11.6 billion as sales rose to $65 billion, compared with $36 billion a year ago.

Coming after oil prices nearly doubled from a year ago, the results were expected, but Exxon and Chevron still beat analysts’ predictions for profits in the quarter. The results mean that five of the biggest Western oil companies — including Britain’s BP and Shell, as well as France’s TotalEnergies — are likely to have generated some $60 billion in earnings for the second quarter.

Next time you fill your car up or pay your electric bill, you know who the real thief is.


Atlanta’s Midtown Music Festival is an annual event held at the city-owned Piedmont Park.  The festival was cancelled in both 2020 and 2021 due to Covid, so music fans were excited about this year’s festival, scheduled to take place in mid-September.  But no more.  The event has been cancelled yet again, but this time because of guns.  In the past, guns have been banned at the event, but now organizers are told that it is against the law to ban guns at any event held on public land.  According to Bloomberg …

In May, a gun rights activist wrote the Atlanta City Law Department demanding that the festival’s permit be yanked unless it rescinded the weapons ban in accordance with state law. And a state Supreme Court ruling in April on a different public space made Live Nation’s legal right to ban guns at the festival questionable.

Democratic candidate for governor, Stacey Abrams, running against the Republican incumbent Brian Kemp, said the cancellation will cost the city $50 million and have untold consequences for local businesses who benefit from the festival.

I am glad to see the festival cancelled, if only because it sends a strong message to lawmakers that the proliferation of guns is not in the best interest of the people of this nation.


To the best of my knowledge, none of my readers hail from the state of Arizona, but just in case you know someone in that state … let me tell you a bit about the Republican candidate running for Secretary of State, Mark Finchem.  Back in February, Finchem claimed that Covid does not exist (ho hum, yet another QAnon cultist) and worse, that everyone who received the vaccine would be dead within two years as a result of the vaccine that he refers to as a “bio-weapon”.

Finchem, who is polling well ahead of his primary opponent, Beau Lane, signed onto a resolution urging Congress to accept Trump’s fake electors in Arizona, and he attended the January 6th insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, actions that helped him land Trump’s endorsement in this race. He has also previously associated himself with the Oath Keepers, an anti-government militia, and supported the QAnon conspiracy theory.  Just the sort of guy we need overseeing the 2024 election … NOT!


And on that note, I will leave you with a bit of (dark) humour.  Ol’ Margie Greene wants to be Trump’s running mate in 2024!  I had to laugh … please, Donnie, if you do run (which I hope never happens), pick Margie!  She’s sure to doom his campaign even worse than Sarah Palin doomed John McCain’s back in 2008!  Says Margie …

“I defend him all the time. I swear I would fight for that man because he fought for us and that’s the kind of president we need back, and if he were to ask me of course, I would be honored.”

Perish the thought.


And how ’bout a ‘toon or two?

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Revealed: oil sector’s ‘staggering’ $3bn-a-day profits for last 50 years

Worried about the cost of fuel? Concerned about the now-obvious effects of climate change? There is one small group of people who are profiting from both, while emptying our wallets AND most importantly, destroying our environment. Our friend PeNdantry over at Wibble sums it up well. Thanks, PeNdantry!

Wibble

Vast sums provide power to ‘buy every politician’ and delay action on climate crisis, says expert

Courtesy of Guardian News & Media Ltd
under guardiansyndication Open Licence Terms

The oil and gas industry has delivered $2.8bn (£2.3bn) a day in pure profit for the last 50 years.

The vast total captured by petrostates and fossil fuel companies since 1970 is $52tn, providing the power to “buy every politician, every system” and delay action on the climate crisis, says Prof Aviel Verbruggen. The huge profits were inflated by cartels of countries artificially restricting supply.

The oil and gas industry has delivered $1tn in profit a year on average – Guardian graphic. Source: Aviel Verbruggen, University of Antwerp

Emissions from the burning of fossil fuels have driven the climate crisis and contributed to worsening extreme weather, including the current heatwaves hitting the UK and many other Northern hemisphere countries. Oil companies have

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Kevin McCarthy Is NOT A Good Man

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy is a real piece of work, as they say.  If the ‘man’ has a compassionate bone in his body, I have yet to find it.  He whines incessantly and his values, such as they are, are so skewed that it’s impossible to determine what they are, for they may vary from one day to the next.  He had one single moment of dignity on the 6th of January, 2021, when he said …

“Let me be clear to you, and I have been very clear to the president. He bears responsibility for his words and actions. No if, ands or buts. I asked him personally today if he holds responsibility for what happened, if he feels bad about what happened. He told me he does have some responsibility for what happened. But he needs to acknowledge that.”

Just a few weeks later, McCarthy visited Trump at Mar-a-Lago and pandered to him in order to get back in his good graces and likely apologized for his earlier comment — a comment which he now tries to deny having said, though it was recorded and has been verified more than a few times.

So, we know he is not an honest man, not a principled man, and cares more for his own political future than for our lives.  But of late he is outdoing himself in the ‘whine-and-blame’ department.

Yesterday, he tweeted multiple times about gas prices having hit $5.  I finally responded to him asking him if he had a point to make, and also whether he had checked fuel prices in other countries, for it is the same around the globe.  The rise in fuel prices is caused by a combination of the war in Ukraine, an excess of demand over supply as people begin traveling more in these ‘post-Covid’1 summer months, and the blatant greed of the oil companies who are seeing remarkably high profits of late (profits on which they pay relatively little taxes).  Canada, Australia, the UK … all report high fuel prices just as ours are.  But ol’ McCarthy wants to point the finger at President Biden and tell the maga crowd that it’s all Biden’s fault.

The thing that got me the most about McCarthy in the past week or two, though, is illustrated by this tweet he made yesterday …

“For the 3rd time in a week, I’m calling for a vote for stronger security for Supreme Court Justices—ALL of them. This isn’t partisan. The threat is real. Why is Speaker Pelosi blocking something that the Senate has already passed unanimously?”

This is a result of the arrest of a man last Wednesday who, while he didn’t actually attempt it, considered murdering Justice Brett Kavanaugh.  He thought better of it and called the police, acknowledging that he was having suicidal thoughts and wanted to kill Kavanaugh because of the pending Roe v Wade decision.  Okay, one man with a mental health issue who didn’t even follow through with his threat, and ol’ McCarthy has tried to pass bills three times within a week to protect the nine Supreme Court Justices.  Don’t get me wrong here … I do not deny that we need to put in place some additional security for the justices if they’re going to keep making anti-humanitarian decisions, and I do NOT wish to see any of them murdered.  However …

On May 24th, a teenager with an assault rifle brutally massacred 19 school children – 4th graders – and two teachers at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.  In addition to that horrific event, there were a number of other mass shootings including one ten days before Uvalde, where 10 people were killed by yet another teenager with a military-style assault rifle at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York.  The rise in mass shootings is the stuff nightmares are made of, and so once again the members of Congress who are people of conscience proposed new gun legislation.  The proposal passed the House (but with much watering down when it finally passed in the Senate, to the point that it is not much of a help at all).  But to my point … guess who voted AGAINST that bill in the House?  You guessed it – good ol’ Kevin McCarthy.

So, let’s get this straight … he is driven to devote all his time, day and night, to getting a bill to protect the nine members of the Supreme Court passed and is downright nasty when he doesn’t get his way, but he cannot be bothered to vote for gun laws, milquetoast though they are, when thousands of people are dying from senseless gun violence, hundreds of them children, every damn year?  Hmmmm … the only conclusion I can draw here is that Kevin McCarthy does not care about the people of this nation, nor does he care about our children.  I think that Kevin McCarthy is NOT a nice man, not a man with a conscience or the capability for humanity, for empathy.  I hope the good people of California think long and hard about his skewed priorities and vote to replace him in the U.S. House of Representatives in the November election.


1 Although mask mandates, vaccine mandates, social distancing requirements and other Covid restrictions have largely been lifted, we are NOT “post-Covid” by any stretch, with the nation still seeing hundreds of deaths daily, but some large portion of people have convinced themselves that Covid is gone and it’s time to PAR-TAY!