Rockets, Riots, and Reluctance…

Well, something positive?  Okay, Americans have returned to the space station in a ship built and launched by – Americans!  The Russians are likely lamenting the loss of revenue so we can assume Trump will soon be swearing to leave the American space program in favor of returning the task (read: money) to Russia…

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There’s growing evidence that the riots at some of the protests over the murder of George Floyd are being started by agent provocateurs.  There’s video of a man with an umbrella who just calmly walks up to an auto parts store and starts pounding out the windows with a hammer.  He’s not furious.  He’s not rioting.  From what I can see (in other photos), he’s not black.  He’s just breaking glass.  Calmly.  Casually, even.

Then, some of the protestors focus their attention on him.  One guy intervenes and stops the guy while another films the occurrence.  Once the umbrella man realizes there’s a camera on him – he walks away.  The crowd tries to confront umbrella man but he just wends his way away from the protestors.

Every time some bad cop murders someone, certain segments of our society turn the conversation to the reaction, not the catalyst.  But…just to make sure they get the “reaction” they want, are they sending in people to start trouble?

I will not focus on the protests or riots.  For one thing, I can’t know who might be working to turn a peaceful protest into a riot and for the other, I feel certain that the protests wouldn’t happen if the murders didn’t happen (or, at least, were properly enforced…)  I’ll just leave this here…

“When it gets down to having to use violence, then you are playing the system’s game. The establishment will irritate you – pull your beard, flick your face – to make you fight. Because once they’ve got you violent, then they know how to handle you. The only thing they don’t know how to handle is non-violence and humor.”   ― John Lennon

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Our local sheriff, Mark Essick (emphasis on the ‘sick’, I guess) has decided he’s not interested in enforcing the law or, at least, not all of it.  The lock-down is more than he can bear and he wants out and he’s not, by god, going to stop anybody who wants to die from this illness from dying from this illness!  Bold stance, I guess.

I find it…telling…that the minute I heard he was going to use his vast medical education to over-ride stupid ole doctors and epidemiologists, I decided he’s a maga hat wearing trumpster.  Maybe he is, maybe he isn’t.  I don’t know the guy.  What I DO know is that it’s not his job to interpret the law.  It’s his job to enforce the law.  How many of us get to keep our jobs once we’ve announced our intention to do only the parts we like?

The truth is, I get it.  The horrifyingly poor response to the pandemic by the current “administration” did terrible damage to the economy.  As they dithered, that was kind of inevitable.  The demand by the Capitalists that the workers get out there and generate more revenue for the Capitalists to steal was also inevitable.  Sure, people will die who didn’t need to but it won’t be any of THEIR people so…

“Death To America…”

“Perhaps on your death bed you may realize the futility of the propaganda you pumped out there and if the world has collapsed you caused it!

I saw this in a social media feed yesterday.  It was written by a conservative to a progressive.  You might want to read that again.  It was written by a conservative to a progressive.  I imagine he had something different in mind, something specific, but still, I was shocked to see it.  I thought maybe it was a joke.  THEN I wondered why.

With victory – the collapse of the United States of America – right in the grasp of the one percent, why would a conservative avoid the credit they so richly deserve in destroying a once-great nation?  This should be their moment!  They SHOULD be in the streets celebrating the poverty, desperation, sickness, and hardship they’ve worked so long and so hard to bring about, right?  (Trickle-down’s ass…)

You see, conservatives have been shouting ‘Death to America’ going all the way back to Reagan.  No, of course that’s not an exact quote.  Instead, it’s the ongoing essence of the message of the conservative movement.  (Note: I don’t need the agreement of conservatives to know it’s true…)

When Reagan first uttered his famous, bullshit nine words, “I’m from the government and I’m here to help” it translated into ‘Death to America.’  In fact, it was the first salvo.  Then we got Paul Weyrich teaching conservatives that voter suppression SHOULD be the American way because conservatives can’t win when there’s a large turnout.  (Google “Goo-goo Syndrome”)  Voter suppression has been a TOP conservative priority ever since – all the while pointing a fraudulent charge at Democrats.  Restricting the votes of Americans?  Voting is one of the most fundamental rights of Americans.  How is that NOT ‘Death to America?’

Newt Gingrich came along and did more damage with his ‘Contract With America.’  He used a list created by one Frank Luntz to re-frame issues in this country.  The ‘Inheritance Tax’ became the ‘Death Tax’ for example.  After that it was easy to convince the simplest Americans that dead people were being taxed.  Giving everything a false but sinister name to confuse Americans and sow discord?  ‘Death To America.’

Grover Norquist is the conservative famous for saying he didn’t want to destroy government.  He just wanted to reduce it to a size where he could drown it in a bathtub.  Sounds like ‘Death to America’ to me…

Bill Clinton can’t be left out of this, either but then, he was far and away one of the greatest conservative Presidents this country has ever seen.  I know, he ran as a Democrat.  But he governed as a conservative, “reforming” Welfare, eliminating the free press, repealing Glass-Steagal, refusing to regulate these new-fangled “derivatives” and most importantly to this piece, issuing the necessary waivers to allow the dis-informing, propaganda machine that is Fox “News” to take to the airwaves.  ‘Death to America’ indeed.

Tax cuts for the wealthy, always pressed for by conservatives and always sold to the American people as economic stimulation, never stimulated the economy even once.  But they DID starve the government of the resources it needs to do it’s job and THAT is the true goal of constant, destructive tax cuts.  It’s sabotage, straight up.  Attacking the American government from within MUST be understood as ‘Death to America.’

Skipping over many other examples and fast-forward to today.  Well, 2017.  Shortly after Donald J. Trump was installed by the Russians (with active support from conservatives), Steve Bannon declared that Trump’s job was “the deconstruction of the administrative state.”  That’s a nice, friendly-sounding way of saying he intended to dismantle and destroy the American government.  As is well known outside of the conservative bubble, this he has done – with abandon.  The American government is now viewed worldwide as laughing-stock.  The so-called President is such a complete flop – not only as a President but just as a decent human being – estimates are that, so far, 36,000 Americans have died from the pathetic Federal response to the Covid-19 pandemic.  We’re an object of pity from other nations…

I wanted to call him a ‘failure’ but the truth is, if his JOB is to destroy America, he’s done that quite effectively – or, at least, put in place the people best able to destroy America.  The current administration has attacked so many things so quickly, decent people just haven’t been able to keep up.  And, as I said, they announced it as their intent.  ‘Death to America,” in reality…

Covid-19 is going to prove to be the death knell of the once-competent United States.  The one percent went on the war path against America and, after enlisting the aid of far-right conservatives and after 40 years, they’ve won.  But this has been the effort, intent, and goal of conservatives, not progressives, for decades.  Their dedication to opinion, assertion, and anecdotes coupled with their disregard of evidence, facts, and science did it.  But I’m not going to let them blame progressives.  Conservatives did it.  THEY need to own it…

Fraud…

Fox “News” hosts insist Covid-19 is overblown – from the safety of quarantine in their own homes.  Trump claims he doesn’t wear masks.  But he does.

Trump Masked
Do as he says, not as he does…

This was in the back, before coming out to the pubic.  He took it off before the press started taking photos because he doesn’t want the Cult-45 to know he’s lying to them…

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Trump claims he found a doctor to write him a prescription for Hydroxychloroquine and now he’s merrily taking it every day.  Frankly, nobody outside of the conservative bubble believes him but that’s his story and he’s sticking to it.  The doctor he’s making responsible for this is Sean Conley who now stands accused of prescribing a potentially deadly medication to a patient (the ostensible President of the United States, no less) who doesn’t have any symptoms.  Doctor-watchers tend to frown on things like that.

My first thought when I heard this news is this Doctor Conley should be investigated by the American Medical Association for malpractice.  Then I realized, if this guy can get the so-called “President” to voluntarily and happily ingest a medication for which he has no use but which – according to every study to date – significantly increases the chances the patient will die, perhaps the good doctor should instead by given the Medal of Honor…

Sadly, it’s most likely the doctor prescribed sugar pills dressed up to look like Hydroxychloroquine just to shut up his whiny patient…

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I’m laughing at conservatives who are simultaneously politicizing the Covid-19 response while shouting at the top of their lungs that nobody should be politicizing the Covid-19 response.  They don’t even seem to realize they’ve been directed to go outside and “prove” the safety of the situation so Trump can “revive” the economy and win the “election.”  Nothing political about that, right?

It’s a huge bet.  If it turns out Trump’s gut is right, everybody will be fine and everything will get back to normal.  If it turns out science is right, there will be another spike and more tens of thousands dead and FAR more damage to the economy.  Hell, the clowns running this show haven’t even contained the FIRST spike and they’re already ramping up another?  Nice.

Either way, there’s absolutely NO evidence Trump has the ability to revive the economy so putting everybody’s life at risk seems an extra stupid thing to do…

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Yesterday, Trump declared churches essential places of business and ordered governors across the nation to allow them to open for services starting this weekend.  I’m for it.  Anything that might reduce the number of Trump voters AND the number of religious zealots who want their god injected into everything except their own lives is okay in my book…

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Oh, hey, speaking of Republican hypocrisy, have you heard that Trump is fighting against people using vote by mail in every way he can?  He was clever enough to declare that if people get to vote, Republicans would never win again.  No surprise, there.  Republicans have long known they can’t win without cheating.  That’s why they a) cheat in every “election” and b) scream and shout about how their opposition is cheating…

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Aw, Tara Reid’s lawyer has let her go as a client.  It seems she got caught in yet ANOTHER lie, this time about her educational credentials.  She lies like a Trump.  You know the thing that blows me away about all of that?  I’m often amazed that people who lie so often, so readily, so easily, also lie so effing BADLY!  You’d think they’d at least be good at it…

Distractions and Excuses…

Sloth-like response…
I think it’s hilarious the current “administration” is trying to blame it’s own myriad and sundry failures on Obama.  “Oh,” the ‘party of responsibility’ whines, “they didn’t leave us enough masks.”  Quick check: Donald Trump had been the so-called “President” for three years between Barack’s exit and the Pandemic.  Three years!  Trump had three years to buy masks and HE waited until weeks into the pandemic to try to replace them?  Sure…blame Obama…

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Obamagate?
This is one of those ‘many but only’ things.  Many conservatives believe that Obama launched an illegal investigation into the Trump campaign in 2016 but ONLY conservatives believe that Obama launched an illegal investigation into the Trump campaign in 2016.  Everybody else knows the investigation was launched after monitoring of the Russian criminals and spies in this country revealed multiple and extensive contacts between the Russians and the Trump campaign.  Investigating was the correct – and appropriate – thing to do.

Ultimately, although Mueller managed to uncover multiple crimes and much criminal activity among Trump associates, he failed to make any definitive, criminal connections to the Russians but his report did detail many troubling contacts.  I wonder about the intelligence of re-hashing this whole thing now.  I guess they’re confident no new information will be forthcoming (unless they fabricate it, of course).  Besides, they need to try to convince the voting populace that the Russians aren’t responsible for Trump’s last “win” so people won’t blame the Russians should Trump claim victory a second time…

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Yet Another Conspiracy Theory…
As of yesterday, according the CDC, there were 87,315 American deaths from Covid-19.  One can only speculate about how much lower that number would have been had a competent person been in charge of the response.  When Obama was faced with a potential Ebola virus outbreak, for example, it only killed 2 people in the US.  You know, because…competence…

So, conservatives are handling it the way they ALWAYS handle information they don’t like; they’re lying about it!  Conservatives are trying to pretend people are dying from other things but the hospitals are claiming the deaths as Covid-19 in an effort to increase profits.  They believe it, too, because, to them, it makes the most sense that doctors and hospitals across this once-great nation would risk their professional reputations, licenses, and certifications just to make Trump look bad.  (The true ‘Trump Delusional Syndrome…’)

Okay, in fairness, conservatives are not long on details so when they’re told some guy died of pneumonia and it got recorded as Corona-related, they believe it’s fraud because that’s how it’s portrayed in the conservative media.  The truth is, Covid-19 simply exploited a vulnerability in the patient.  The virus weakens one’s immune system and one dies of something other than Corona – but it’s absolutely a Covid-19 death.

It’s like AIDS.  AIDS, itself, didn’t kill anybody.  It just made people deathly vulnerable to…pretty much anything that came along.  Covid-19 is doing the same thing.  Doctors know these things.  Misinforming talking heads don’t…

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The Final Frontier…
trump-space-flag-Grin

He also likes to see big, “working-man” trucks…

Would you look at this Dufus?  Just look at that grin.  He’s SO happy he gets his new Star Fleet flag.  This is what his “team” is doing instead of dealing with the Covid-19 problem.  To me, he looks just like a little boy being praised for making pee-pee in the potty like a big boy! (Of course, he actually missed…)

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Connections?
In sad news, Melissa Etheridge lost a child this last week.  Her 21 year old son died from an opioid overdose.  I can’t imagine the pain and offer my deepest condolences on the family’s loss.  The father of that child?  David Crosby, a man with well-known struggles of his own with drugs.  I started wondering about the genetic predisposition to addiction.  I know there are FAR too many variables to say for certain but it crossed my mind…

Great Lies…

white house
I hear Covid-19 is starting to be detected in the White House.  Fingers crossed…

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It looks like conservatives expect people to get upset over the unsubstantiated accusations against Joe Biden.  It’s funny.  They never seem to understand how their double standards degrade positions.  When conservatives said similar charges against Trump didn’t matter, they were saying – like it or not – NO such charges matter.

Okay, the truth is, if her story made more sense, I’d think it worth a second look as well.  But it doesn’t.  Her story is nonsense.

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Apparently, Mississippi is America’s poorest state – chock-full of conservatives.  No relation between the two – at least as far as the conservatives can see.  Now they’re among the leaders in the push to re-open.  It will be interesting to see.  I’ve spent quite a bit of time debating the relative merits of injecting disinfectants or shoving lights up one’s ass or whatever and I think I’ve reached a point where my attitude is, hey, do it.  Either they’ll stumble upon something that actually works, or there will be significantly fewer Trump voters in November.

Either way, the rest of us can’t lose, right?

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Oh, God, yesterday I saw my first Trump campaign commercial.  The problem with him being so completely incompetent at his job is that he’ll want to campaign even harder now.  That means more commercials…but I think he’s wasting money.

Trump doesn’t need to convince people who might vote Trump and won’t be able to convince people who won’t vote Trump.  His base believes anything Fox “News” or this Onan network tells them.  The result is they have no clue about what’s really happening or why and they think Trump is actually doing a great job.  (This in support of the Nazi position that if one repeats a lie often enough people will believe it.)

Fact-based individuals, though, know that Trump has failed this once-great nation in just about every measurable way.  Advertisements that pretend he’s great won’t be able to affect those of us who know better…

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As of this writing: 78,789 dead in the U.S. from Covid-19.

Conservatives are being told that, no, it’s probably, like, 22 dead from Covid-19.  Conservatives are being told that doctors across the land are just making up numbers.  Conservatives seem to actually believe that doctors from sea to shining sea would risk their professional reputations and medical licenses just to overstate the severity of Covid-19 – all for profit…or just the joy of making Trump look bad.  (The story is “fluid.”)

I’ll tell you this: Trump doesn’t need any help to look bad.  He makes a fool of himself every day…

Wasted Time…

Never forget: Americans are dying because Donald Trump is so completely incompetent and the ideology he represents is dishonest.  For his own reasons, Trump wasted time that can never be recovered…

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The headlines all say the White House has blocked Dr. Fauci from testifying before Congress.  Not quite correct, as it turns out.  Dr. Fauci has been blocked from testifying before the HOUSE but is expected to testify before the Senate.

The House wants the facts and oversight of the President.  The Senate wants to whitewash the entire situation and pretend their failed so-called ‘President’ is a great man doing great things.

I have faith that Dr. Fauci will tell as much truth as he can but since the goal of the Senate is a coverup, he’ll be blocked from saying too much…

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Meanwhile, the Senate is packing American courts with what they call ‘Conservative Judges.’  These are people less concerned with impartiality and more concerned with pushing “conservative causes” – which always include harming as many poor people as possible while comforting the comfortable.

American jurisprudence is in deep trouble…

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I’m just going to say it: I don’t believe Tara Reade.

I know my conservatives will accuse me of partisanship but I’m not particularly loyal to Joe Biden and certainly not to the Democratic party nor the DNC.  Her story just doesn’t add up.  Or, I guess I should say the story she seems to have finally settled on doesn’t add up.

I don’t mean to be dismissive of honest claims but I’ve NEVER been a person who thought a woman HAD to be believed just because she says so.  There are FAR too many variables that range from incorrect memory to motivated misstatements right down to good old-fashioned lying.

She should have stopped at “tried to lift my skirt” because that’s the moment the women *I* know would have reacted – aggressively.  But she seems to want to yadda, yadda, yadda the moments between saying hello and being “digitally penetrated.”  It’s important to note that her complaint does not suggest she was drugged or in any way incapacitated.

Unless one is a virgin or a gay man who has never been with a woman, one knows that particular act takes a few steps to get there and I’ve never in my life known a woman who didn’t know where things were heading as the process started.

It’s a silly story and a waste of time…

It’s An Illness…

TrumpSaysNo
Trump being Trump…

There’s a good article in the Guardian.  The headline and the subhead each tell conflicting stories.  The headline, ‘Trump says briefings ‘not worth the effort’ amid fallout from disinfectant comments.‘  The subhead? ‘The President remained behind closed doors after advisors reportedly warned him that the briefings were hurting his campaign.’

It’s worth reading the original but I’ll save you some time.  Trump has been using the daily Covid-19 briefings as little campaign rallies, bragging about himself, insisting he’s doing a great job, pretending he knows things, and blaming anyone – everyone – not himself.  The thing is, daily appearances by Trump have served to expose him as the tiny-minded, flim-flam man he is.

He saw, and seized, the opportunity of the daily briefings to campaign for free.  The efforts have hurt his re-election bid.  His advisors suggested he stop so he stepped aside for a day or so with a snooty response, ‘not worth the effort.’  Like a cold sore, though, he’ll be back.  Irritating, obnoxious, demanding to be seen, he’ll be back.  The man has the self-control of a two-year old.  There’s no way he’s letting cameras focus on somebody in his administration who isn’t him for any length of time…

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The fallout from the ongoing debacle that is the Trump Administration’s handling of the current crisis is going to continue for some time to come; first illness, then financial, then illness again, and then financial some more.  All the while, this administration sits back making wrong-headed, ideological choices.

Did you know?  This is the EXACT same mistake Republicans made in the run-up to the first Republican Great Depression.  Simply put, they didn’t DO anything in response to the brewing crisis because of an ideology that suggested the economy should (and would) sort itself.  The same problem infected their thinking in the run-up to the second Republican Depression in 2008.  Can’t regulate derivatives.  That would be too much government interference.  Besides, what could go wrong?  Um…

And now they’re doing it again.  The current economy is in desperate trouble and Republicans are focusing all of their attentions on those who need help the least.  I’m not surprised.  It’s the Republican way.  “Comfort the comfortable and afflict the afflicted.”  Conservative media sold their consumers a bill-of-goods called ‘Supply Side Economics’ or colloquially, ‘Trickle-Down Economics.’

Of course, anyone with the sense of a stick of butter knows, now, that the whole thing was a scam that hasn’t worked, doesn’t work, and will not work.  But you know what DOES trickle?  Economic pain.  Not only does it absolutely trickle, it trickles UP.  The longer our Congress Critters ignore the plight of those at the bottom of the economic scale, the worse the subsequent economic crash is going to be.

Meanwhile, as those at the bottom suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous economic fortunes, the Trump administration is working as hard as it can to INCREASE the price of gas AND the cost of mailing a letter.  INCREASE costs on people already desperate and struggling?  Why…that IS the Republican way!

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So, the World Health Organization is coordinating worldwide efforts to find a vaccine to combat the Coronavirus.  The civilized nations are working together to find something.  They’re sharing information and coordinating efforts AND they’re committed to getting any resulting vaccine out to anybody who needs it as quickly as possible.

Victims of the Greatest Nation on Earth™, though, won’t benefit.  I mean, they COULD benefit.  The civilized nations have said they’ll include the U.S. even if the U.S. is too stupid to participate in the process (not an exact quote).  My prediction?  I think the U.S. will refuse any resultant medications.  Ideology again.

If the WHO effort succeeds and a vaccine is developed and then distributed around the world as needed, why, that would be Socialism.  (The horror!)  Besides, the pharmaceutical companies in the US won’t be able to price-gouge Americans if someone else holds the patent – or, worse yet, refuses to patent the vaccine at all and just allows it into the world.  (Oh, the humanity!)  No.  Americans are just going to have to keep dying until the U.S. develops it’s OWN vaccine that some corporation can own, control, and extort usury profits.

Political campaigns are famous for bluster and huge sweeping statements about the potential failings (and, therefore, dangers) of the opposition.  But I think this time, it’s for real.  Thinking Americans had to vote out Herbert Hoover and the Republicans in order get any relief in the 1930’s.  Thinking Americans had to vote out Bush 43 and the Republicans in order to get any relief in 2008.  Thinking Americans MUST vote out Trump and the Republicans in 2020.  These guys are literally killing Americans trying to make a buck…