Sneaky

This, my friends, is how democracies die …

“The Justice Department has quietly [emphasis added] asked Congress for the ability to ask chief judges to detain people indefinitely without trial during emergencies — part of a push for new powers that comes as the coronavirus spreads through the United States.

Documents reviewed by POLITICO detail the department’s requests to lawmakers on a host of topics, including the statute of limitations, asylum and the way court hearings are conducted.

[…]

The move has tapped into a broader fear among civil liberties advocates and Donald Trump’s critics — that the president will use a moment of crisis to push for controversial policy changes. Already, he has cited the pandemic as a reason for heightening border restrictions and restricting asylum claims. He has also pushed for further tax cuts as the economy withers, arguing that it would soften the financial blow to Americans. And even without policy changes, Trump has vast emergency powers that he could legally deploy right now to try and slow the coronavirus outbreak.

The DOJ requests — which are unlikely to make it through a Democratic-led House — span several stages of the legal process, from initial arrest to how cases are processed and investigated.”

You can read the rest of the article here, but let’s talk a bit about what this could mean.

This could mean, if somehow either Congress passed it, or failing that, Trump took his ‘executive power’ to an unprecedented level, that you might be arrested for any or no reason.  Say your state is under a mandated “lock down” (something that is outside of the law to begin with), and you are out for a walk in your neighborhood.  A police car is patrolling the area, sees you, stops and the officer arrests you simply for being outside.  He couldn’t do that under normal circumstances, and if he did, you would be able to appear before a magistrate, explain the situation, and almost certainly be released immediately.  But, if this suspension of constitutional rights were to fly, you could be arrested, tossed in jail, and not go before a judge “until this crisis is over” … possibly months or even as long as a year.

That scenario is frightening enough, but let’s project a bit.  If allowed to suspend constitutional rights, what other areas of our civil liberties might be affected?  The one that worries me the most is the 1st Amendment, our rights to freedom of speech and freedom of the press.  Already, our right to peaceful protest has been suspended by default with the ruling that no more than ten people are allowed to gather in one place.  What next?  Could it become unlawful to … say, speak against our government, to call Trump out on his lies and ignorance?

I don’t know where this will go, and I hope that the Democratic-majority House of Representatives will put a stop to such nonsense, but I do not have a crumb of trust in our government at this time – not Donald Trump, not William Barr and his Department of ‘Justice’, not the Republican-led Senate under Mitch McConnell.  I don’t trust our law enforcement agencies, nor our Departments of Labour, Education, Health and Human Services … none of them.  They are led by people who do not care about the people of this nation but will do almost anything to enhance their own profits and power.  Just something to think about.  Let’s keep our eye on the ball and hope our free press does the same.


And just one little snippet that I found humorous in a macabre sort of way …

“In Rhode Island, among businesses cited for ignoring social-distance warnings was Wonderland, a strip club, where customers were still receiving lap dances last weekend.”

Gotta get your priorities straight, y’know!

Snarky Snippets — Thoughts on Stuff

Every now and then I let my mind run loose … take it to the park, unsnap the ol’ leash, and just give it free rein to run amok.  This happened today and the ol’ mind took off at warp speed.  It was a while before I saw it again, and when it returned, it was more than a little bedraggled, and was covered in snark.  And so … tonight you get a dose of whatever came from my mind … you may want to don your pith helmets …


And the Most Admired Woman is …

Michelle ObamaThat’s right, folks … none other than the role model of class, style and grace, Michelle Obama!!!

Barack ObamaAnd to really ice the cake, the Most Admired Man in 2018 … none other than the male counterpart role model of class, style and grace, President Barack Obama!!!

I cannot think of two people more worthy of the honour.  What does gall me, however, is that Donald Trump came in second for Most Admired Man … why???  However, even so there is a bright spot, for he is only the second president not to win the top honour during his presidency … the other was Gerald Ford.  Eat your heart out, Donnie!!!


Abortion

It isn’t my intent to have another discussion on when a cell becomes a life … there are plenty of those going ‘round and frankly, each side continues to make the same points, and nobody is listening to the other side, so why even bother?  But I have some questions for those who are so vehemently against abortion based on their religion.

I want you to think about seven-year-old Jakelin Caal and eight-year-old Felipe Gomez Alonzo (shown above).  These two children both died in the past week while in custody of the United States government.  They died because of inadequate care and insufficient medical treatment.  Both of their deaths were preventable.  These were children, not fetuses.  Growing, living, breathing children in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP).  And yet, I don’t see people protesting, carrying signs and demanding that the children in custody of the U.S. government, children who have in many cases been taken from their parents, be treated with care and compassion.  Where is the outrage of those who call themselves “right-to-lifers”?  Whose life?  Is it only unborn white babies whose lives you will fight for?

And the next question … who or what gives you the right to determine what is right for the rest of us?  If you believe abortion is wrong and you don’t choose to have one, fine.  Don’t have one.  This isn’t Nazi Germany (yet) and nobody will force you. Have 20 children for all I care, but do not ever try to impose your values on others.  Not everyone believes in the same god you do, not everyone shares your set of values.  And … AND … not everyone has the same opportunities you have such that they can raise a child, afford food, medical care, clothing and shelter to keep that child safe, happy & healthy.  Don’t judge others’ situations using your own as a moral compass.

Adoption, you say?  Well, let see … domestically, approximately 99,900 children were adopted last year (another 35,000 were adopted from foreign countries).  Okay, so almost 100,000 kids adopted … sounds good, right?  Wrong.  On any given day there are some 438,000 children in foster care, and in the course of a year, some 687,000 children spend at least some time in the system.

My point?  Two of them, actually.  1) No single life has more value than another.  Those who are determined that a fetus qualifies as a life should be equally concerned and willing to act on behalf of those immigrant children at our southern border, the children being killed all over the world – in Syria, Greece, Saudi Arabia.  And those people should be out there advocating for children stuck in a foster care system that barely functions.  2) Freedom of choice belongs to each of us.  I will not force you to have an abortion, but don’t tell me that I cannot until you have lived in my shoes.


Statistics, statistics, statistics …

Politico published a set of year-end data that can be used to fact-check some of Donald Trump’s braggadocio.  I found these statistics fairly interesting and thought you might too.  Naturally, I couldn’t resist adding a bit of snark

  • Number of campaign rallies Trump held in 2018: 44 (Note that the next presidential election will not take place until November 3rd of 2020 … more than two years from the time these rallies were held)
  • Number of times he visited one of his golf clubs: 67 (Remember how he said Obama played too much golf and that when elected, he, Trump, would be too busy working to have time for golf?  Ahem …)
  • Number of war zones visited: 1 (And that was only because the heat in the kitchen at home was getting to be too much for him.  When he went to Iraq earlier this week, rather than a positive talk focusing on the troops, he lied to them about their pay raise, and made the rest of his speech all about him.  It was a photo op, that’s all)
  • Number of 2018 general election candidates Trump endorsed: 90. Percentage of those candidates who won: 55%.  (Some candidates, wisely, asked him to stay the hell out of their states)
  • Percentage increase in the number of tweets from 2017 to 2018: 32% (He has tweeted more than the first forty-three presidents all combined!!!)
  • Percentage increase in references to “witch hunt” from 2017 to 2018: 620% (Holy Smokes, Batman!!!  Does this dude ever w-o-r-k???)
  • Number of Cabinet secretaries who were removed or quit: 10 (And those were the lucky ones who got out while they still had at least a modicum of sanity)
  • Percentage of Trump’s executive staff that has turned over in first two years: 65% (In most corporations, a manager with a turnover rate of 65% would have been long since out the door!)
  • Number of presidents who’ve had more than one chief of staff in their first two years: 4. Number of presidents other than Trump who have had three: 0  (He certainly is a record-setting president, isn’t he?)
  • Percentage increase in U.S. trade deficit since Trump took office: 18% (Hmmm … seems I remember something about how he was so appalled by the trade deficit under Obama and he, Trump, was going to reduce it?  Perhaps I imagined it.)

Yessir, a record-setting president … too bad none of his records are good for the country, yes?


And so, I shall save any remaining snark for another day.  Have a lovely Friday, my friends!

Shoes Are Not News …

Dear Free Press … You Blew It … Again

I applaud our press … they have kept us informed despite a secretive and contrary administration.  They have found resources where there might have been none.  They are our last best hope to remain free of the heavy hand of an unhinged dictator.  But this week they blew it.

stop-press4Credibility.  It’s all about credibility.  Too many, following Trump’s claims of “fake news” question the mainstream, legitimate press already.  They must maintain high standards, be their own fact-checkers, and most importantly, focus on what is important.  And quite frankly, Melania Trump’s shoes are not what is important.  Nobody cares if Melania wants to wear 6” stilettos to traipse through the flood water in Texas.  Well … nobody should care.  Those who do, wouldn’t understand real news if it punched them in the nose, so they don’t count.

Remember when First Lady Obama had the gall to … gasp … wear a sleeveless dress to some event or another during President Obama’s first few months in office?  The press was all over that one too.  Now, the New York Times and most other major publications have a ‘fashion’ section, and if they wish to analyze Melania’s shoes in that section, then fine.  But it should not, as it was five days ago, be front page news that …

“When is a shoe not just a shoe? When it is a pair of very high, needle-thin heels worn by the first lady of the United States on her way to the site of a natural disaster. Then it becomes a symbol for what many see as the disconnect between the Trump administration and reality; another example of the way in which this president and his family continue to define “appropriate” their own way; and an excuse for partisan name-calling.”

shoes-1.jpgMind you, I am not disputing the above statement, for it is the truth.  I am merely saying that it is not news, it is not sound journalism, it is not the most relevant issue of the day, and it does nothing for the credibility of the source, in this case the New York Times, though The Washington Post and others also jumped on the bandwagon.  Predictably, Fox News and others didn’t miss the opportunity to criticize …

“Politico, The New York Times, The Washington Post and Vanity Fair all went as low as they could go — all the way to the floor — to attack Melania Trump. Readers were astonished at how ridiculous the media were willing to be to savage team Trump.

Here’s how they decided to play footsie with Melania: Politico’s “Melania’s stiletto sideshow,”  Vanity Fair’s “What Not to Wear to a natural disaster,” and, the Times’s “a symbol for what many see as the disconnect between the Trump administration and reality.”

And of course a few comedians had their say …

“But people weren’t talking about the nuclear missile that Kim Jong Un tested, because Melania Trump apparently did something much worse, She went to Houston wearing high heels.” – Trevor Noah of The Daily Show

Focus, dear press, focus.  We need you to do better than this.  We need you to be reporting on the important news of the day, not on what Ms. Trump chooses to put on her feet. Frankly, I don’t care if Melania chooses to wear cute little bunny slippers … given her past profession, I am just happy to see her fully clothed!

The mainstream media may have learned their lesson, for yesterday, as the Trumps once again headed for a “do-over” photo op amidst the devastation of Hurricane Harvey, the above-named media outlets were silent on Melania’s fashion statement, though other, less reputable publications such as The Blaze, Mirror, and The American Spectator picked up the ball and reported on Melania’s “defiance” of the criticism earlier in the week, as she sported her ‘snakeskin stilettos’.  Personally, I have never understood why anybody would wish to try to walk in those things, but that’s just my opinion. I have enough trouble balancing on my flat feet!

shoes-2The mainstream media has always been under a magnifying glass, criticized when they get it wrong but rarely praised for getting it right.  Under the present administration, the scrutiny is even more intense, with daily attacks on the press by not only Trump, but many of his advisors and minions, not to mention the right-wing media outlets and conservative pundits.  It is more imperative than ever that the press leave Melania’s fashion choices to the fashion pages and instead keep the ‘news’ section for real news such as North Korea’s missile tests, Trump’s abhorrent staff picks, his attempts to destroy federal regulations, and his undermining of foreign relations, to name a few.  Focus on the connections between Russia and Trump last year, focus on the connection between Hurricane Harvey and carbon emissions.  Just don’t throw away your credibility, for our very freedom depends on you, our press, to shine the light in the dark corners. Shoes are not news.

White House TRAMPLES Freedom of the Press!!!!

White House Bars Times and 2 Other News Outlets From Briefing

Reporters from The Times, CNN and Politico were not allowed to enter the West Wing office of the press secretary, Sean M. Spicer, for the scheduled briefing. Aides to Mr. Spicer allowed in reporters from only a handpicked group of news organizations that, the White House said, had been previously confirmed to attend.

Organizations allowed in included Breitbart News, the One America News Network and The Washington Times, all with conservative leanings. Journalists from ABC, CBS, The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, and Fox News also attended. 

Reporters from Time magazine and The Associated Press, who were set to be allowed in to the briefing, chose not to attend in protest of the White House’s actions. – New York Times, 24 February 2017


The White House made a very dangerous, very bad decision to dis-allow cameras in this morning’s press briefing conducted by Sean Spicer, and to bar a number of media outlets from the briefing.  A number of the barred agencies are the top purveyors of news between the government and the public, and THAT, my friends, is a huge problem.  As far as this writer is concerned, Donald Trump, whether it was his decision or Bannon’s, just bought himself a ticket out of the White House.  No president, no presidential advisor, has the right to withhold news from the public simply because those news agencies do not say nice things about him.  Period.

Two thumbs up to Time and the Associated Press for boycotting the event.  I hope others follow suit, and at the next press briefing, Sean Spicer finds himself all alone in the room!  But, of course those like Breitbart, Fox, The Washington Times, and other outlets that are already in Trump’s pocket, will be gleeful at this point.

Jeff Mason, president of the White House Correspondents’ Association issued the following rebuke to the administration:

“The W.H.C.A. board is protesting strongly against how today’s gaggle is being handled by the White House. We encourage the organizations that were allowed in to share the material with others in the press corps who were not. The board will be discussing this further with White House staff.” 

White House deputy communications director Raj Shah insisted this was all much ado about nothing.

Just hours before the ‘press’ briefing (I use the term loosely, as the right-wing organizations that were allowed in are not, in my book, legitimate press), Trump was on a tear about his favourite perceived enemy, the press, when he spoke at CPAC:

“A few days ago, I called the fake news media the enemy of the people, and they are. They are the enemy of the people.”

It is said that Steve aka Breitbart Bannon is the driving force behind much of Trump’s anti-press rhetoric, such as calling the press “the opposition party” and “the enemy”.  Here is what Bannon had to say in regards to the media at CPAC yesterday:

“It’s going to get worse every day for the media. If you think they are giving you your country back without a fight, you are sadly mistaken.”  I’m unclear as to what he meant by that last part, but it is obviously a gauntlet thrown down, and I hope the legitimate media are up for the challenge, for it is arguably the most important one of the day.

This is a shorter-than-usual post, as I do not have additional information at present, but I felt it was too important to sit on until tomorrow.  I will post more when I know more.

A Distant Rumble – Trump’s Lies Finally Catching Up With Him

freight-trainThe rumble of a freight train can be heard from a great distance.  The rumble grows louder by stages and as the train passes within mere feet of the observer, it is no longer a rumble, but a deafening roar.  Yesterday, Sunday 25 September, a record was set.  For most, it probably went unnoticed, much as the rumble of a distant train.  But I think … I hope … the train will continue to gain momentum and will soon become a deafening roar that all must hear, that none can ignore.

For far too long, the media have let Donald Trump’s lies slide by, occasionally questioning him, but rarely making his falsehoods, deceptions and distortions the subject of intense scrutiny.  Yesterday, however, that all changed.

“In a normal election year this would be extraordinary. On Sunday editors and reporters at the newsrooms used another word: necessary.

The New York Times story — “A Week of Whoppers” — came out first on Saturday. Politico, The Washington Post and The Los Angeles Times all followed within hours.

Overall, the news outlet counted 87 “misstatements, exaggerations, falsehoods” from Trump and eight from Clinton.

Several of the editors who were involved said the timing was a coincidence. But there was clearly a desire to publish stories before Monday’s debate, when Trump and Clinton’s truthfulness will surely be at issue.” Brian Stelter, CNN Money, 25 September 2016

I included the link to each of the four stories below, and also to Brian Stelter’s CNN Money story … I strongly urge you to read the CNN Money story, if no other, as it sums up the data of all four.

The headlines read:

  • A Week of Whoppers From Donald Trump – Maggie Haberman and Alexander Burns, New York Times  (read here)
  • Donald Trump’s Week of Misrepresentations, Exaggerations and Half-Truths; POLITICO fact-checked both candidates for a week. This is what we found. – Kyle Cheney & 4 others, Politico  (read here)
  • Trump’s week reveals bleak view, dubious statements in ‘alternative universe’ – Michael Kranish & 2 others, The Washington Post  (read here)
  • Scope of Trump’s falsehoods unprecedented for a modern presidential candidate – Michael Finnegan, Lost Angeles Times  (read here)

The Trump camp, of course, had a response to the stories:

“I really don’t appreciate the campaigns thinking it is the job of the media to go and be these virtual fact-checkers,” said campaign manager Kellyanne Conway.

Really?  I thought that to report the truth was precisely the role of the media!

I heard the rumble last night and I did a happy dance with a tear in my eye, thinking that perhaps, just perhaps, the major media outlets have come out from under the spell cast by the evil clown and are seeing the light.  Yes, I know, time will tell, but still … I see a light at the end of a long, dark tunnel and for once, I HOPE it is a freight train!

All four media outlets have said the timing of the four articles is coincidental, that they simply felt it was important to get this message out prior to the debate. Have they finally found a conscience?  New York Times political editor, Carolyn Ryan, notes that the day Trump sought to reverse himself on the issue of President Obama’s birthplace was the turning point for the media. Apparently his lies that day, trying to say Hillary Clinton was the force behind ‘birtherism’ and that he had known Obama was born in the U.S. since 2011, were so blatant that even the media could no longer ignore them.

I send two thumbs up and a ‘hats off’ to the four above-named media outlets.  Keep up the good work!  This is what journalism, a free press, should be about!

two thumbs.png

Little Hitler … er, Donnie … Bans Yet Another Publication

The Guardian is a British national daily newspaper founded in 1821.  It is the 5th most widely read newspaper in the world.  It is a well-respected publication and one of my main “go-to” sources for international news, along with Der Spiegel and The Daily Mail.  Frankly, I find coverage of even U.S. news to be more reliable from European publications than US publications.  Last week The Guardian joined BuzzFeed, Politico, The Washington Post, Univision, The Daily Beast, The Huffington Post, The Des Moines (Iowa) Register and others in being ‘persona non grata’ at Trump press conferences, rallies and other events.  More and more, it is apparent that the only journalists Trump wants covering his events are those that are sympathetic to him.  Note that Fox News still holds press credentials.

Apparently the censorship of The Guardian came about as a result of Trump being asked an ‘uncomfortable’ question by Defence and Security Correspondent, Ewen MacAskill.  Trump responded to MacAskill by calling him a “nasty, nasty guy.”  And then, the next day, Guardian reporters were denied entrance to Trump’s golf resort in Aberdeen, Scotland, on Saturday morning, where Trump was on the second day of a two-day UK visit.

This only reiterates what I have said time and time again … Trump has the very thin skin of a classic narcissist and absolutely cannot tolerate to be criticized or put in a position of actually having to answer a policy question.  It was a terrible violation of freedom of the press when Trump banned The Washington Post from his events.  But when he goes after a news media outlet that is not based in the U.S., is not a U.S. company, then I find his behaviour deplorable, as I’m sure the Europeans must.  What an embarrassment he is to this nation!  Never before has a candidate for the highest office in the land shown such blatant disregard for democratic values!  NEVER!  Hillary Clinton has not banned a single journalist or media outlet from her events.  Barack Obama never once banned reporters, even though he was often heckled more than most.

My question is this:  If he is allowed to get away with censorship of this caliber while he is just an ordinary citizen running for office, what would he attempt if he were actually elected president?  I may not like Fox News, but I acknowledge their right to ‘report’ the news as they see it.  Little Donnie may not like the Washington Post, but it is not his right to stifle or attempt to control them.  This, people, is what is meant by “Freedom of the Press”!

Fortunately, Little Donnie has zero control … ZERO ability to control or restrict press access at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland this month!  I am hoping that the organizations he has barred from previous events show up en masse and report as they see fit.  I believe they will.

Donald Trump was a guest in the UK, specifically in Scotland.  A guest.  A good guest brings a gift, minds his manners and certainly does not throw Uncle Ed out of Uncle Ed’s own home!  That, folks, is precisely what Donnie tried to do.  He banned a well-respected newspaper of the UK from an event at which he was a guest!  If you are not embarrassed, if you are not humiliated by this, then take a right at the next corner and follow the rest of the lemmings off the cliff.  Please.

Freedom of the Press … Going, Going …

Donald Trump said Monday that he is “revoking” the Washington Post’s press access at his campaign events, calling the newspaper “phony and dishonest.”  In a Facebook post, the presumptive GOP nominee attributed the decision to the newspaper’s “incredibly inaccurate coverage” of him.

What started his vendetta against the Post?  The catalyst was a headline in the Post on Monday:  “Donald Trump seems to connect President Obama to Orlando shooting.”  There is nothing dishonest about this headline, as Trump made thinly-veiled accusations against President Obama saying that Mr. Obama’s response to the shooting meant “he doesn’t get it or he gets it better than anybody understands.”

The Post’s executive editor Marty Baron responded: “Donald Trump’s decision to revoke The Washington Post’s press credentials is nothing less than a repudiation of the role of a free and independent press. When coverage doesn’t correspond to what the candidate wants it to be, then a news organization is banished. The Post will continue to cover Donald Trump as it has all along — honorably, honestly, accurately, energetically, and unflinchingly. We’re proud of our coverage, and we’re going to keep at it.”

BuzzFeed, Politico, The Daily Beast, Univision, and The Huffington Post are among other outlets that have been blocked in recent months. Some journalists have described this as an emerging Trump “blacklist.”  Some of these publications, such as Huffington Post, have a biased slant, but Politico, founded in 2007, has a reputation for fair and honest reporting of all sides, and in fact at one time was considered to be slightly right-leaning.  And now the Washington Post which is among the most-respected publications in the U.S.  Donald Trump may well have just “cut off his nose to spite his face.”

At the start of his campaign a year ago, Trump had the press practically eating out of his hand and licking his boots.  His was the name that sold newspapers and drew viewers, and he was getting so much airtime that we barely heard from Clinton or Sanders.  Trump was lapping up all the free advertising, and while the press, like the rest of us, realized he was a buffoon, it was still attention, and any attention was better than none.  Now, apparently, he has decided to narrow the scope of his campaign coverage in an attempt to control what the public sees, to control his still-free advertising.

Journalists without credentials can attend Trump events by obtaining tickets available to the general public. But a Politico reporter, Ben Schreckinger, said he was ejected from a Trump rally in California earlier this month by a campaign staff member and a private security guard.  “Trump in his campaign has repeatedly tried to control the coverage of news organizations by denying their journalists access to his campaign events. We believe that is a violation of the basic right of a free press to report — and if the goal is to squelch independent journalism about Trump it certainly won’t work,” said POLITICO editor Susan Glasser in a statement.

Earlier this year, Trump vowed to make libel laws more punitive against the media if he becomes president. “I’m going to open up our libel laws so when they write purposely negative and horrible and false articles, we can sue them and win lots of money,” Trump said during a campaign event in Texas. Hostile rhetoric toward the press is a staple of his events. “I would never kill them, but I do hate them,” he said of the press in December. “And some of them are such lying, disgusting people.”  Good to know he doesn’t plan to kill them, merely remove their voice boxes.

What Trump fails to understand is that his words, his exact words, are what the press reports.  One might think he would tone down his rhetoric if he does not want to see his own words staring at him over the breakfast table, but no, instead he expects the press to take his words and try to make them sound innocent and nice?  Or intelligent?  That is impossible to do when he spews nothing but stupidity and hate each time he opens his mouth!  To quote an old saying, “you reap what you sow.”  When you sow hurled epithets and fear-mongering rhetoric, hate-speech and lies, they come back to haunt you.  Surely in all his years in business, he has learned this lesson?

One cannot help but see the parallels between Trump’s rhetoric and the actions of Erdogan, Putin and other thin-skinned leaders who believe that the way to control their nations is to control and muzzle the press.  Though Trump’s power is limited at this time to restricting who, among the press, can attend his campaign events, imagine if the man were to be elected president.  Those who are leaning toward a vote for Trump in November are many of the same people who so actively and vociferously defend their 2nd Amendment rights.  I think you would do well to apply that same level of fervor to defending our 1st Amendment rights, for without a press that has the freedom to keep us all informed, we become a dictatorship no different than Turkey, China, North Korea or Russia.  If Trump has his way, the only news outlets allowed to cover his campaign by November may be Breitbart and Fox.  I look for more media outlets to be shut out in the coming weeks.  Never fear, as Politico is still managing to report everything Trump says and does,  I am reasonably certain that the Washington Post will do the same.  But nonetheless, this is a frightening sign of what would be to come under a Trump presidency.  For Pete’s Sake, Americans … WAKE UP AND SMELL THE DAMN COFFEE!

Filosofa’s Hit-And-Run News

Most of my regular followers know that I am a news junkie, an addict, if you will. I scan a wide variety of legitimate news sources (no, dear readers, Fox is not one of them … I said “legitimate”, did I not?) and I troll for fodder for the blog (and sustenance for my mind) for a couple of hours every day. Typically, I choose one or maybe two news events to use for my daily blog post and save the others for a rainy (news-less) day. As if there will ever come that day! At any rate, today I am using a hodge-podge of news stories from this morning and spouting what I refer to as a “hit-and-run” on each. This is a simple, off-the-cuff comment based on my initial reaction to the story or headline. This rather laid back approach rather than my usual, more in-depth analysis, is basically a result of a day spent trying to recover from the holiday weekend and prepare for the next holiday weekend which will begin in approximately 66 hours! So on to the news for 28 December 2015:

• Carly Fiorina in response to Donald Trump calling Bill Clinton “sexist”: “Yes, Bill Clinton is fair game, but my point is attacking Bill Clinton won’t defeat Hillary Clinton. The only way to defeat Hillary Clinton is to attack Hillary Clinton’s track record.”

o So, attack is the only way to win the presidential election? Not putting forth policies and ideologies that are better than the other guy’s, but simply attack? In this way, the candidate really doesn’t need a platform, right? All he/she needs to do is attack, ridicule and mock his/her opponent!

• Donald Trump regarding Virginia RNC about “loyalty oath” not letting democrats vote in the republican primary: “It begins, Republican Party of Virginia, controlled by the RNC, is working hard to disallow independent, unaffiliated and new voters. BAD!”

o Frankly, the democrats have two very capable and qualified candidates from which to choose, certainly more so than any in the republican camp, especially Donald Trump! Actually, though, if democrats were allowed to vote in the republican primary, they might actually vote for Trump, as every vote for Trump increases the likelihood of a win for either Clinton or Sanders.

• Dr. Ben Carson on the campaign to win the republican party nomination: “Obviously, going through a process like this is pretty brutal.”

o It’s okay, Ben … it’s over now. All you need to do is go pick up your hat from the ring and go home. They won’t pick on you any more once you do that.

• “The number of Americans killed in gun homicides on Christmas Day is comparable to the number of people killed in gun homicides in an entire year in places like Australia or Britain.” (The Washington Post, 28 Dec 2015)

o We are certainly the luckiest nation on earth for having nearly-unrestricted “rights” to own and carry firearms, yes?

• “A grand jury declined to bring charges against either of the two police officers involved in the fatal November 2014 shooting of Tamir Rice, a 12-year-old boy who was playing with a toy weapon in a Cleveland park.” (The New York Times, 28 Dec 2015)

o As you might well figure, there will be an entire post about this, but for now … @#$%

• Donald Trump on Vladimir Putin: “I think the biggest thing we have is that we were on ’60 Minutes’ together and we had fantastic ratings. One of your best-rated shows in a long time. I think that I would at the same time get along very well with him.”

o That’s great, Don! Why don’t you go over to Russia and help him destroy Russia instead of asking him to help you destroy the U.S.?

• Vladimir Putin on Donald Trump: “It is always a great honor to be so nicely complimented by a man so highly respected within his own country and beyond.” (Politico, 17 Dec 2015)

o Highly respected???  Since when?  Are we speaking of the same Donald Trump???  Of course Putin would like to see Trump win! It would ensure that he (Putin) would have no resistance or obstacles from the U.S. in his future quests to build the empire he envisions, similar to the USSR.

Okay, so that’s it for today, folks! Stay tuned for more …