A New American Award

"Reitender Urzwerg" kleinstes Lebewesen der WeltNanoarchaeum Equitans Virus
The smallest known organism


There are scientists who feel that viruses are not the smallest organisms because they lack a cellular structure.  Others believe that this condition is not disqualifying and it is this group of scientists whose views are invoked for this noteworthy recognition, The Virus Trophy.

Our nation has been poorly served by many of our leaders.  They have engaged in debates over issues designed solely to distract and polarize us.  They have refused to do the work to create the actions our nation truly needs and have instead concentrated their efforts on what serves themselves.  In short, they have focused on making us small at a time when we desperately need big thinking.

Our country wasn’t built on small thinking or by small men and women.  It was built by leaders who were giants and by the American people who worked hard, looked after one another, sacrificed and did the right thing.  There was a shared belief in doing whatever it took.  We built a country.

Now we find our leaders telling us all of the things that we cannot do.  They teach us to lie and to be hypocritical, to diminish one another and to defeat ourselves by rejecting learning and science.  They tell us to be afraid of one another.

They say stupid things, like telling us that the way to stop the killing of 33,000 of us every year with guns is for more people to be packing heat.  Actually, we tried that.  It was called the Wild West and a lot of innocent people got killed, until at last we figured out that it was counterproductive to safety for angry people to be running around with loaded guns.  Of course, more people having guns serves the gun manufacturers quite well and it serves those who receive campaign contributions from them, too, but it’s small, selfish thinking.

And so it is  .  .  .

– for bible thumping haters of all stripes

– for social program haters who lie to us

– for those who tell us that austerity will lead to prosperity, this in the face of well known economic principles that make it clear that austerity leads to contraction of the economy and poverty for the people

– for self-serving fools who tell us to “Drill, baby, drill” when doing that is a certain trip to climate catastrophe.

It’s time to stop thinking small.

We need to rebuild America so that our bridges are strong and safe.  We need to rebuild America so that we transmit electricity with minimal losses of the power that we generate with renewable resources.  We need to embrace all Americans, even those who are different from ourselves, both because our diversity is our strength and because it’s the right thing to do.  We need to reaffirm that our true international power cannot be found in unnecessary, punitive wars, but in the strength of our influence, the juggernaut of our culture and the power of our economy.  We need to stop pretending that we can kill our way to security and instead take action to make friends.  We need to deal with the displacement that will occur when we stop building unwanted and unneeded weaponry and repurpose those skilled workers for building 21st century America.

It’s time to think big.

That is why the first awarding of The Virus Trophy goes to Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell.  He has spent over four, small-thinking years focused on just one thing:  “To make sure that Barack Obama is a one-term president.”

Oddly, I had thought that a senator’s job was to represent the people of his/her state and to provide leadership to move America forward.  I had thought that the oath of office required our leaders to support and defend the Constitution of the United States.  For McConnell, though, those things seem to have been secondary at best.

There are other stupid, distracting, small-minded things that he has focused his energy upon in order to un-focus us from what is truly important and to keep us small.  Most of his energy has gone into opposing anything that President Obama promoted, regardless of the devastating effect of his actions on America and Americans.  All of that in the aggregate is what demonstrates McConnell’s true smallness and the richness of his deserving of the first Virus Trophy.  Congratulations, Senator McConnell.  However, you’re too small for America, so please take your award and go away in 2014.

Perhaps you’d like to extend your congratulations to Senator McConnell for winning this smallest of awards.  You can do that here And be sure to pass this along to the Kentucky voters you know – so that they know.


Copyright 2024 by Jack Altschuler
Reproduction and sharing are encouraged, providing proper attribution is given.

What do you think?

Your name and e-mail address are required, but your e-mail will not be disclosed.

Keep the conversation going by both adding your comments and by passing this along to three friends.
That´s how things get better.

One Response to A New American Award
  1. Jim Altschuler Reply

    Sent to Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, 4/8/13

    You’re supposed to be the minority leader as I understand it — LEAD, damn it! Stop undermining the future of this country and that of our children, grandchildren and all those who follow. Stop the petty political gamesmanship. Not just you personally, nor just the Republican Senators and Representatives, but the democrats as well.

    BE THE LEADER you’re supposed to be. Represent the Kentuckians who sent you to Washington to do just that. Teach the other Republicans AND Democrats how to stop the pettiness and bickering, how to GROW UP, how to do the jobs that they were elected to do, how to work for positive outcomes for the AMERICAN PEOPLE — economically, in employment, in infrastructure, etc.

    The American people really don’t care, even in the slightest, about the well being of the wealthy 1%. The 1% have demonstrated graphically that they don’t give a damn about anything other than making more money and consolidating more power for themselves and their wealthy peers.

    Quit worrying about protecting your own job and your own butt and DO YOUR JOB, or just quit and make room for someone from Kentucky who DOES want to do the job.

    My apologies for the caps — they are for emphasis only and not meant to indicate yelling. Despite my disagreement with what you have been doing, and not doing, I still respect the office and the position.

    Please advise me and my family and our friends what your plans are going forward — how you will lead the Republican members of the Senate and, by extension, the House …
    to improve the economy;
    to stop wasteful spending;
    to trim down specifications so that suppliers to the government and the military can charge more reasonable rates for their products thereby reducing the Federal budget;
    to help Americans all over this country get back to work, to feeding their families, to putting a decent roof over their heads, to REGAINING THEIR SELF-RESPECT.