Campaign Contributions

Hunting


P0ST 1077


No, not for game. Not for dinner. Not for sport.

I’m hunting for powerful, consistently muscular, banner-waving, truth telling, lie smashing, propaganda pummeling communication from any Democratic organization, any Democratic candidate or politician or any Democratic operative who is sick of Republican attacks, outrageous accusations and lies.* The game I’m hunting for is Democrats who broadcast powerful, motivating communication, words that light the passion we need to win. Most don’t seem able to find such stuff even with two hands and a flashlight.

I get email solicitations from the Biden campaign and every one of them (as in: all) is only about what they – campaign staffers – need. Not a word about what you and I want, what we believe, fear or hold to be true. One email last week carried six bullet point statements, each about what they need. You and I are nowhere to be found in their appeals except for the DONATE button. As of this writing I’ve received over 1,200 of these miserable solicitations since Biden announced. That’s a lot of crappy communication.

It would be unfair of me to just criticize and complain, so I have offered my observations and I’ve extended a hand, volunteering to help. Cue the crickets.

This pattern has not been limited to the Biden campaign. It’s exactly the same with the DNC – same inept, self-centered and insulting writing, same offers from me to help, same crickets. Did these guys all attend the School For The Communication Impaired? The University of Crappy Correspondence? The College of Who Cares About You?

To be fair, Adam Schiff’s campaign has sent me 137 solicitations. At least they are written with a respect for the intelligence of recipients and a hint of what’s important to we citizens, but his are the exceptions.

Attendant to this lousy Democratic Party communication is the Democrats’ absence of communication. I’m thinking about their near-silence as Republicans claim that there is a “weaponized” Justice Department, that Judge Juan Merchan is “compromised,” that there is a Biden crime family and all the Republican bogus claims of unfairness (poor little victims!) and their vaporous claims of some un-American something-or-other done to them by Democrats. I’m thinking about Trump and his fascist sycophants corrupting the truth in defense of the indefensible (phrase from Steve Schmidt). Where’s the smack down of these guys?

Where is the counter-attack stating the truth, that all of the indictments of Trump were made before Trump announced his candidacy, making Republicans’ claims about Justice Department election interference idiotic? Where the hell is the push-back?

More to the point, where is the counter-attack that challenges Americans with the reality that Republicans are lying to us, that they hate your freedom, that they think you’re stupid and that “others” are vermin poisoning our blood? Where is the expose´ showing that Republicans are cowards and hypocrites who want to be dictators over you? Where is the question, “How do you like being lied to and played for a fool?” I’ve posted such messages here, but of course I don’t have the reach of the DNC.

Why are they keeping mum as Republicans are stealing our freedom, our rights and our Democracy? Where is the outrage at the Republicans’ Big Brother Ministry of Truth** program of lies and attacks on education, safety, health and more? Pretty much all I hear from Democrats is limp-wristed, boring messages generated by atrophied communication muscles. I’m hunting for an indication that Democrats actually want to win.

Jeez, Democrats: GET A SPINE!

Because your lack of vigorous attacks and counter-attacks is allowing Republicans to poison the American people with their anti-America propaganda. If the only ones speaking are Republicans with their lies and hypocrisy, theirs are the only messages the American people will hear. People will believe them because they don’t hear an alternative.

So, I’m hunting for the communicators and the communication that will vanquish the minority thieves of our democracy, the ones who have already stolen your rights and who promise to steal more.

I’m hunting for messages that will win.

The choices are:

  1. We can be a doormat and lose everything, or
  2. We drop the namby-pamby, go at them bare knuckled and save our rights, our freedom and our country.

Pick one.

For the rest of us, it’s time to stop relying on others to do the messaging. It’s time for us to go on the attack.
.

Need a resource? Read Hit ‘Em Where It Hurts by Rachel BItecofer and Aaron Murphy. ***

Motivational Quote of the Week

“I don’t want anybody [dying] on me. We need every vote. I don’t care about you. I just want your vote. I don’t care.”

That outrage should motivate all Democrats, Independents and the leftover Republicans who still have courage. It’s yet another episode of Trump’s “verbal incontinence” (term: Eugene Robinson, June 10, 2024), when he blabbers and accidentally tells the truth.

Where is the fury from Democrats?


* Exception: Follow and support Ryan Bussee’s campaign to be Governor of Montana. He’s fierce and powerful, a fine model for other Democrats.

** See 1984 by George Orwell.

*** Books: See Note #5 below.


Today is a good day to be the light

  • _____________________________
  • Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:
  • Fire the bastards!
  • The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

  • Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take ALL OF US to get the job done.

    And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

    Thanks!

    The Fine Print:

    1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings.
    2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
    3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
    4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
    5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.
    6. Clicking on most pics will take you to the source information.

    Click me

    JA


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

Keeping Score


Post 1,031

___________________________________

Keeping Score of Republican Voters

In a recent ABC News/Ipsos poll we learned that 45% of Republican-aligned adults responded that Trump “Best represents [my] values.” That’s more than double such identification with the next nearest Republican candidate.

Click me to make it easier to read this chart.

They’re talking values here. Not policies, not patriotism, not democracy, not America. Values.

AND THEY IDENTIFY WITH TRUMP!

Something has gone terribly wrong when nearly half of Republicans think Trump even has values (other than for himself) and they think he best represents their own values.

MAGAs, thoughtless sheep that they are, are followers without consciousness or conscience, excusers of verbal and physical violence. Those are values. So is hatred. And they most identify with Trump.

I have a question for all of them:

What is it that makes you need to hate people so much?

Okay, another question:

What happened to the values Mom & Dad taught you and that you learned in Sunday School or at the 4-H, or in the Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts or even in kindergarten? What in the world made you sell yourself out?

Hint: Watch for answers in my post on Wednesday, January 24.

These people and their hatred have moved the needle not to the right, but to the wrong. All those self-righteous Evangelicals, for example, certain of their holiness, believe they’re doing God’s work and they’re are encouraged by their extremist political overlords and their pastors. That they support and promote vileness that is entirely anti-Christian makes no difference to them. They are bonded in a brotherhood of other-ing everyone not exactly like them. That is the America they insist upon. Those are quite odd values for bible thumping Americans to hold. But they do hold them, just the way Trump spouts them.

I don’t know how to create the counter to that, to stop the march to oblivion. Worse, it appears that Democrats don’t know either.

However imperfect, the America we used to have (or at least were working toward) is, in reality, the America we believed in not so long ago. Now those notions are at best quaint to many and at worst they are the enemy of the angry millions.

So, Republican voters’ score: D-
.
Keeping Score On The Supreme Court

We suffer under six extremist justices because in order to get through the Senate vetting process they lied or misled about their beliefs:

including their intent to honor stare decisis (leave prior Court decisions alone)

including Roe v. Wade being settled law

including opposition to legislating from the bench – nevertheless, they made up cases so they could make new, extreme partisan law

That’s how they got on the Court: dishonesty. There’s lots more, but we’ll save that for another day.

Don’t expect Clarence Thomas, whose wife was a key supporter of the insurrection, to do the right thing and recuse himself from cases concerning January 6. He’s just not into doing the right thing.

Trump lawyer Alina Habba, speaking on Fox News (begin at 6:00) about the Supreme Court case regarding Section 3 of the 14th Amendment, said the most un-American thing. She said,

“I think it should be a slam dunk in the Supreme Court. I have faith in them. You know, people like Cavanaugh, who the president fought for, who the president went through hell to get into place, he’ll step up. Those people [the other Trump appointed justices] will step up .  .  .  “

She finished, saying that their stepping up will be because of the law and fairness. But everyone can see that her intent was to declare that they owe Trump, so they’ll pull his butt out of the fire.

She might be right.

So, Supreme Court score: D-

Trump attorneys’ score: F

Keeping Score Of Begs

It isn’t surprising that no Republicans hit me up for campaign solicitations. I think I got hit on once by Trump and possibly many times, as I’m sure I tagged that first email as spam, so I don’t see those exercises in victimhood, retribution and grift.

Meanwhile, many Democrats have found me. I mean many. Here are a noteworthy few.

Elizabeth Warren contacted me once and Gavin Newsome a few times.

Independent Krysten Sinema has written to me with her hand out six times. Good luck with that, Krysten.

Adam Schiff gets the award for the most interesting, thoughtful and well written begs. He’s knocked on my door 79 times.

AOC writes the most friendly, caring and grass roots informative solicitations. She’s hit me up 183 times.

The winner is Joe Biden and all those who write solicitations for him. They have reached out to touch my wallet over 594 times since he announced last April. That’s an average of two per day. Even if the rate of his solicitations doesn’t increase, given the number of days until the election, I’m looking at about 558 more hits just from Biden. I’ll help him, but woe be unto my Delete key.

Stand by for the final count in my post of November 10, 2024.

So, political donation begging score: Don’t get me started.
.
Keeping Score on Speakers of the House

On February 23, 2023 I sent a request to the then-Speaker of the House, Kevin McCarthy. He had given 41,000 hours of video recordings of the January 6 riot and insurrection to Tucker Carlson – and only to Tucker Carlson. Carlson then cherry picked the recordings and put together an impressively dishonest and misleading piece of propaganda, suggesting that the insurrectionists were ordinary peaceful tourists. That’s why I asked McCarthy to send the videos to me, too. Oddly, I never heard from McCarthy, despite repeated requests.

The new speaker is a bible-thumping extremist, so I don’t expect him to do the right thing, either. In fact, he posted footage of the insurrection on his website and blanked out faces to protect the villainous perps. Odd, since we’ve seen the videos of these perps many times and many have already been convicted of their crimes, so their faces are known.

Consequently, this is your final update about those videos. They aren’t going to show up in my Inbox unredacted, so you’ll just have to live with what your own eyes have toldl you – no gaslighting. What a concept!

So, Speakers of the House: F
.
Keeping Score of Republican Legislators
    • “The GOP is more interested in nursing grievances and stoking anger than actually solving problems. That’s exactly what Donald Trump has trained them to do.”
  • Eugene Robinson
So, GOP legislators: F

  • Today is a good day to be the light
  • _____________________________
  • Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:
  • Fire the bastards!
  • The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

  • Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take ALL OF US to get the job done.

    And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

    Thanks!

    The Fine Print:

    1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings.
    2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
    3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
    4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
    5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.

    Click me

    JA


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

Immigration, Healthcare and Disappearing Spine Disease


Post 1,026

___________________________________

The Real Immigration Issue – Said Out Loud

With a noteworthy and continuing firmness, Congress has steadfastly stood tall for doing nothing to reform of our immigration system. That has left our proud Republican congresspeople free to whine, point fingers of blame, complain and demonize.

In the face of thousands of hopeful immigrants arriving daily, our courageous Speaker of the House, He Who Hates America, sent all representatives home for 3 weeks. The Republicans don’t want our immigration system fixed because they’d rather use our dysfunction to stoke their base against Biden and Democrats, even though it’s a challenge that is actually the responsibility of Congress, so they leave asylum seekers hanging. “The cruelty is the point.”

We do have a real and serious immigration problem, but it isn’t the one that is commonly talked about. Here’s the real immigration issue, said out loud:

Republicans don’t want any Hispanic, Black, Brown,
Asian or Muslim people in our country. *
.

After all, those people are so very inconvenient to straight, Christian nationalist, White Supremacist suburban and rural patriarchal posers.

Let’s be precise: This describes Republican extremists and Republican “moderates” (read: cowards). It certainly describes some others, too, especially the true believers of the wholly made up, hateful, bigoted, racist Replacement Theory.

Republicans still talk about people seeking asylum coming from the south, but nobody is complaining about White, European applicants seeking to immigrate – unless they’re from Ukraine and seeking asylum. They don’t want those people because allowing them in our country would help Ukraine in its fight for survival against Putin and Republicans are in the tank for Putin.

  • Side note: I remember a time when Republicans
  • were in the tank for America.

Our immigration problem isn’t about immigration. It’s about racism and White supremacy and delusional, hateful Christianity. Nothing more.

The Healthcare Ripoff

Read this from STAT, the healthcare newsletter from the Boston Globe:

INSURANCE
American taxpayers pay as much for health care as other countries do for universal coverage

The U.S. government spent more on health care last year than the combined governments of Germany, the U.K., Italy, Spain, Austria, and France did on universal health care coverage, according new CMS data. Their populations add up to a total of 335 million people, compared to the U.S. population of 331 million.

The $1.8 trillion in federal and state health care expenditures in 2022 funded by taxpayers last year — about 41% of the nearly $4.5 trillion in both public and private health care spending — calls to mind an argument made by economists Amy Finkelstein and Liran Einav. “We’re already paying as taxpayers for universal basic automatic coverage, we’re just not getting it,” Finkelstein said at the STAT Summit in October. Read more from STAT’s Annalisa Merelli.

Wait, what? We’re paying full price for universal healthcare – actually, many times what other countries with universal healthcare pay – but “we’re just not getting it”? Are we really allowing ourselves to be ripped off like that?

Well, yeah, we are.

And our politicians, in the pockets of Big Pharma, insurance, big hospitals and more, don’t want to change a thing.

Please open your hymnal to page 2024 as we sing together all the verses of “That Sucks.”

Disappearing Spine Disease, or,
“What Do You Want Me To Say About Slavery?”
Definition

psycho-emetic [SI-ko-e-MET-ik] – noun

1. so stupid that it makes you puke

  • Jax Dictionary

At a town hall in New Hampshire last Wednesday Nikki Haley was asked what the cause of the Civil War was. She went on a tear about states rights, limited government and more and never mentioned slavery!

When she was done windbagging, the questioner pointed out her astonishing exclusion of the obvious historical fact of slavery. This pretender to the throne responded by asking, “What do you want me to say about slavery?

Yes, Nikki Haley really did ask that stupid question. That’s psycho-emetic.

We don’t want to keep her hanging, so to answer her question, what we wanted her to say about slavery is that it was THE cause of the Civil War. We wanted her to say how unfathomably horrible slavery was, how wrong it was and that millions of people still suffer from its consequences 159 years later. But she didn’t say that. Instead, she asked what color the questioner wanted her Republican chameleon outfit to be.

I just wish she had had the courage to say her truth: “I’m not going to say the obvious, that our Civil War was about slavery, the greed that slavery supported and the enormous cruelty it spawned, because if I did that I’d lose MAGA votes.” But she didn’t say that.

What she did do was to instantly disqualify herself for any job that calls for intellectual honesty, moral courage and the ability to speak truth. What she did do was to support the banning and burning of books that mention anything about race, discrimination and our horrifying history of slavery. What she did do was to tell us that she’s such a suck up that she would be unable to confront either foreign or domestic enemies.

No, Nikki, even if you’re from the South, you may not own human beings. That was the cause of the Civil War. It wasn’t about northern aggression. It wasn’t about states rights. It wasn’t about limited government. It was about slavery, you coward!

Poor Nikki Haley is just another carrier of Republican Disappearing Spine Disease. Have low expectations of her, because like the hymn about universal healthcare that we pay for but don’t get, this sucks.

And the hits just keep on comin’.

One Last Thing
  • Definition:

re·ces·sion /rəˈseSH(ə)n/ – noun

  • 1. a period of temporary economic decline during which trade and industrial activity are reduced, generally identified by a fall in GDP in two successive quarters.
    – Oxford English Dictionary

    For our math challenged, “two successive quarters” means 6 months in a row.
    .
    Republicans continue to say that a recession is less than a heartbeat away or that we are in a recession right now. Here are the facts (as in: observable reality):
    .
    1. We have had nothing but growth in GDP, month after month, quarter after quarter for a really long time. The rate of growth slowed during the Trump-ignored pandemic in 2020.
    2. The S & P 500 returned 26% last year and the DJIA is at an all time high. Doesn’t sound very recession-y to me.
    3. Because there are business cycles, saying that a recession is coming is like saying that the sky will be dark. Sooner or later you’ll be right. Meanwhile, there is no recession.
    4. We keep making more jobs month-after-month, wages are higher for everyone who depends on a paycheck, insulin is just $35 a month instead of hundreds, they’re almost ready to replace the I-75 bridge over the Ohio River, and, and, and .  .  .
    5. If you’re one of the moaners saying that your economic situation is good, but that our national economy sucks, get over your slavish following of phony righty propaganda. They’re just feeding you mind crap, hoping for political advantage.

    Which sucks.

    Okay, This is the Real Last Thing

    For a wonderful list of places/causes/ways to take action and make a difference to protect our unfathomably precious democracy – that task you’re going to focus on and contribute yourself to this year – check in with Mobilize.us. Consider this an addition to the list on this post.

  • ________________________________________
  • *  Trump in Waterloo, IA on December 19:

“They’re poisoning the blood of our country. All over the world they are pouring into our country. They come from Africa, they come from Asia, they come from South America.”

He called it a “border catastrophe.” He said, “They’re poisoning the blood of our country.”

  • That’s it plain and simple: Racist, xenophobic fear and hatred is what immigration reform – and Trump and MAGA – are all about.

  • Today is a good day to be the light
  • _____________________________
  • Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:
  • Fire the bastards!
  • The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

  • Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take ALL OF US to get the job done.

    And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

    Thanks!

    The Fine Print:

    1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings.
    2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
    3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
    4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
    5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.

    Click me

    JA


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

Potpourri v20.0


Read to the end for some fun.

Bang-Bang

Have a look at this Everytown graphic:

Is that something we should be proud of? Perhaps we should be chanting, “We’re number one!” Because with over 20,000 dead and 320 mass shootings already this year, it occurs to me that I may have missed the change in our national values. Maybe murders, brutality and bullying are what we value most now.

A friend recently emailed saying that he lives in a pretty safe, low crime community. I replied that is exactly what the people of Highland Park would have said on July 3rd of last year. The Parkland kids would have said the same thing on February 13, 2018 and the Sandy Hook parents would have used those very words on December 12, 2012. The shoppers at Tops Friendly Markets in Buffalo felt just like that on May 13, 2022, same as the shoppers and employees at the Allen Premium Outlets Mall in Texas on May 5 of this year. Those dates were the day before each massacre. Maybe your safe neighborhood doesn’t protect you quite like you think it does.

We’ve known for many years that lobbying congress won’t deliver the gun safety we want. That’s for two reasons. The first is that legislators in the pocket of the gun industry would have to act against their own immediate best interests to deliver what you want, and they just won’t do that.

The second reason you’re not getting what you want is because most of the legislation that affects you is state driven and most of us don’t pay attention to that locus of power until we’re being beaten up – or shot up – by it.

The net of that is that if you are to get the gun safety legislation you want (or legislation for anything else you want), we’ll have to first vote replacement legislators into office at both the state and federal levels, people who believe in what you believe in.

You and I have less than 500 days to make that happen.

In a fundraiser email last week .  .  .

.  .  .  Adam Schiff told of the MAGA Republican House censure of him for the dastardly deed of doing his job. He’s too stand-up a guy to use the word “dastardly,” but I’m not above such a thing. Neither was the House Democratic caucus, which chanted “SHAME! SHAME! SHAME!” at the MAGA flame throwers and their spineless Speaker, Kevin McCarthy. Of course, the shame accusation aimed at those people fell on their deaf ears, because they are incapable of recognizing their shame, so Schiff wrote,

President Franklin Roosevelt once said, “I ask you to judge me by the enemies I have made.” I have been called a liar by the architects of the Big Lie, a fraud by fraudsters from Donald Trump to George Santos, and an enemy of the state by those who cheered on the insurrection on our Capitol.

I wear their enmity, their falsehoods, and their censure like a badge of honor. [emphasis Schiff’s]

Read Schiff’s paragraph again to fully appreciate this dreadful display of MAGA hypocrisy.

It’s a damned shame that so many Americans long ago sold out and lost their ability to feel their shame. We need a lot more stand-up people and we’re most unlikely to find them in that shame incapable MAGA crowd.

For a clear demonstration of what patriotism looks and sounds like, give a listen to what Schiff had to say just before the shameful, MAGA party-line censure vote, which included both extremists and the cowards afraid to stand up for what they know is right. Also note that 13 representatives failed to register a vote on this faithless resolution.

The Divine Right of Justices

Emperor Samuel Hirohito’s – I mean Alito’s – hand has been caught in the fancy, enormously expensive vacation cookie jar. It appears that he, like Clarence Thomas, believes that his lofty judicial position puts him above financial reporting requirements. Since Alito has already been attacking the Constitution by forcing his religious views on everyone, perhaps his next move will be to attack Pearl Harbor.

Havin’ a Little Fun

Representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert, founders of the Sisters of Perpetual Desperation for Attention, have announced that they have joined with the members of the Brotherhood of Low Self-Esteem Over-Compensation and its charter members Jim Jordan, Louis Gohmert, Matt Gaetz, Tommy Tuberville, Ted Cruz and Josh Hawley. The new, combined organization is called The Flaming Order Of Nya-Nya.*

The need for the coupling of these MAGA-stacized orders became clear after they had individually demanded that President Biden resign and turn over the country to the disgraced, twice impeached and multiply indicted Donald Trump.

Biden’s press secretary issued this statement:

“The President gave these demands his partial attention for the entire duration of his snapping closed the case for his aviators and then said, ‘Nah. I don’t think so.'”

That was the trigger moment to merge the groups.

In their first public announcement they declared that the new order will exert great nya-nya pressure on Speaker McCarthy such that they will fully emasculate him not later than the end of this year. They promised to leave nothing but his gavel. “No skeletal structure is expected to remain,” they predicted, “especially back bones.”

In a press conference held on Juneteenth in hopes of distracting White people from the important meaning of that date, they announced that The Flaming Order of Nya-Nya will raise the necessary funds for their work by knitting sweaters for assault rifles and selling them at school board meetings in red states. They are also expecting dark money contributions from Billionaires Against Democracy (BAD), as well as from vacation buddies of Supreme Court Justices.

The stated mission of this new order requires absolute obedience to:

  1. The sacred vow to never allow reality to distract them
  2. The Nya-Nya imperative to always loudly shout something or other

To commemorate the founding of this new order, leaders met in a secret ceremony held behind a Port-a-Potty in a construction zone at the edge of the Ellipse. There, standing in a circle with hands joined in their secret handshake of middle fingers hooked together, they vowed eternal fidelity in their fight to eliminate higher brain functioning everywhere. Most movingly, they knelt, bowed their heads and pledged a holy paean to their hallowed motto:

Hoc Locus De Stultus Est**
.
Late Addition
Focus For Democracy: Zoom Briefing – 2022 Impact Event
Focus for Democracy is a pro-bono donor advisory that approaches political investment in an effective, dynamic, data-driven way.  Learn about the effectiveness of its 2022 Midterm programs and hear the network leaders’ thoughts on the road ahead.
.
This is NOT a fundraiser.
 
Thursday, June 29th
5:00pm PT/8:00pm ET
Register here: 
https://tinyurl.com/F4DJune29

_____________________________________

* These orders do not exist. They and the reported statements and actions of the individuals named in this section are solely a product of the author’s imagination.

But, hey, given the reality of MAGA, this sounds plausible.

** Literally, “This is the place of stupid.”


Today is a good day to be the light.

______________________________

  • Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:
  • Fire the bastards!
  • The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

    Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take a lot of us to get the job done.

    And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

    Thanks!

    The Fine Print:

    1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings.
    2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
    3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
    4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
    5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.

    Click me

    JA


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

Memorial Day In Two Parts


Arlington Cemetary

This essay was originally posted on Memorial Day, 2012 and is offered today (with some updating) as a reminder of what this holiday is about. For more, have a look at Fred Rasmussen’s article in The Baltimore Sun. Some of his data is different from mine; no matter, though, as the meaning is consistent.  JA

————————————————————————————

1. Our War Dead

It was originally called Decoration Day, a formal day of remembrance of the fallen Union soldiers of the Civil War. The refreshing of their graves was the order of the day. It became known as Memorial Day in 1967 and was declared to be in honor of the American dead from all of our wars. That federal re-naming packaged all of the individual honoring ceremonies for our war dead and all the individual traditions practiced around the country into a neater package, something that apparently was important in 1967. In addition, the date of remembrance was shifted from May 30 to the last Monday in May so that there would be a 3-day weekend.

We no longer conscript our young into military service and instead rely upon a voluntary corps of warriors, leaving the rest of us to follow the imperative of our former president in time of war, that we go shopping. That’s handy, as shopping is more pleasant than thinking about our young crawling through the desert and being shot at.

Then we see a soldier in desert fatigues walking through the airport, wearing his boots, the color of desert sand, his camouflage backpack hung from his shoulders, and we know he’s either on his way to or from trouble and war becomes real to us. It’s already quite real to that GI in desert fatigues.

Memorial Day is not for that soldier. It is for those who have died. What is poignant is that the soldier in the airport might be one of those whom we remember next year.

Memorial Day is intended to be a somber event, a Decoration Day for refreshing graves. It is not about parades with circus clowns to entertain us or political clowns to promote themselves. It is about the renewal of our individual and collective memory of those who can no longer march, lest we forget them.

2. Making More War Dead

If we care to think deeper, Memorial Day is also an opportunity to ask if what we want is to be in a near-perpetual state of war, as has been the case since the Korean War began in 1950. After all, war is what creates the dead women and men whom we remember on Memorial Day.

Keeping our military busy shooting bullets and rockets has been very good for business for the war matériel companies and they would be financially much worse off if we stopped expending ordinance in foreign lands.

Having our Defense Department spend more than do the next 15 industrialized countries combined doesn’t seem to enhance our safety. To be sure, we need a robust national security, but angering the rest of the world with our heavy-handed military response to all conflict doesn’t help us, so why would we keep doing what we’re doing?

If you want an answer to that question, heed the advice offered by Deep Throat: Follow the money. When you arrive at clarity (it won’t take long), decide if that’s the America you want. If it isn’t, you better stand up and speak out, because if you don’t, that’s the America you’ll get.

Silence will make certain that we continue to fill far too many graves with our young and then remember them on the last Monday in May. Too bad they won’t be here to know they are appreciated.


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

Remember This Day


Remember this day, March 30, 2023, so that you can tell your grandchildren that this was the moment when justice began to return to America.

_______________________________

From Adam Kinzinger, March 30:

If you take one thing away from this email, let it be this: The indictment of Donald J. Trump doesn’t keep him from running for President; it doesn’t hurt his standing with his MAGA faithful; it doesn’t end the threat to democracy.

Trump, the MAGA movement, and all of their anti-democratic allies are just getting started. Many of them are already sending out breathless fundraising appeals in response to the indictment, ready to cash-in on their leader’s shameless criminality. Rather than disbanding, today’s events will hyperdrive the victim complex that holds the cult together. We are NOT in the clear.

Join the REASONABLE MAJORITY.


Today is a good day to be the light.

______________________________

  • Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:
  • Fire the bastards!
  • The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.


    Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take a lot of us to get the job done.

    And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

    Thanks!

    The Fine Print:

    1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings.
    2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
    3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
    4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
    5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.

    JA


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

Five Years Without Valentines


It was five years ago today when Valentines stopped for 17 high schoolers and teachers at Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL. They were killed by a former student. Apparently, he had issues. Maybe he was full of hatred for others who were doing well and he, not so well. Maybe others were wealthier, so he felt like he was on the bottom of the social totem pole. Maybe he just felt powerless and had to find a way to feel powerful.

Darth Vader told us something about that.

.

Feeling powerful is what the Dark Side is all about. It isn’t about justice or fairness. It isn’t about righting wrongs. It is only about feeling powerful for a few moments. It is about holding the power of life and death over others. It is about putting a pitiful band-aid on the desperate, bottomless hopelessness and despair of one’s fear about one’s value. That’s when everything is transformed and the power of the Dark Side becomes known.

The Uvalde shooter knows it. So does the Sandy Hook shooter and the Mother Emanuel AME Church shooter. The Columbine shooters know it, as do the Tree of Life Synagogue shooter and the Buffalo shooter and the Monterey Park shooter. They all know the power of the Dark Side and they loved the feel of it, the smell of it, the taste of it.

Jamie Guttenberg

But people like Fred and Jennifer Guttenberg hate that the shooters know that, because one of those murderers killed their 14-year-old daughter, Jamie, and 16 others that Valentines Day five years ago. She was a dancer. Then suddenly she wasn’t. Now she’s a face for what the Dark Side does and is a placeholder for all the victims of impotent people who find their power by harming or killing others.

Jamie would have been 19 years old now. Maybe she would be a freshman in college. Maybe she would be enrolled at a dance conservatory. We’ll never know and neither will her parents or her brother, Jesse. All because a loser wanted to feel powerful, so he ended all Valentines for all those kids and teachers by going to the Dark Side. And nothing changed to make kids or anyone else safer.

Five years earlier twenty-six first graders – little 6 and 7 year old kids – and staff were gunned down at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Those kids would be getting their drivers licenses around this time, but of course now they won’t.

That massacre was going to turn the corner, soften the hearts of legislators and break the hold of the gun industry on politicians. It remains baffling that 26 murdered little kids changed nothing.

These are the victims of the shooting at Robb Elementary School, Uvalde, TX, 5/24/22. The sister of one of the kids who was killed asked, “Mom, what picture will you use for me?

Last year, following the shooting of 21 children at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, TX and the mass murder of grannies at a supermarket in Buffalo, congress at last passed a law to promote gun safety. 193 Republicans in the House voted against it.* The law does some good things. And it’s a pitiful substitute for what we really need. Read the caption to the left.

We still haven’t done what we all know we need to do to stop murderous rampages. We probably won’t do those things until we decide that we love our children so much that:

.

we stop allowing an extremist minority (the ones who need guns to feel strong) to control us and our laws;

we stop tolerating massive campaign contributions from the gun industry to power-craving, self-serving politicians;

we stop mouthing platitudes and actually do what’s needed to deal with mental illness.

Until then our kids will continue to do active shooter drills, hiding under their desks, terrified. Some of them will die. And some will be huddled in corners, hoping Mom has a good picture of them for their memorial.

____________________________

Breaking News

As of 12:42AM EST February 14, 3 are dead and 5 are injured, some with life threatening injuries, from shootings the prior evening. This happened on the campus of Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan. Police encountered the shooter who then killed himself.

This is one of over 43 shootings just yesterday. So far this year there have been 5,205 shootings, of which 2,235 were homicides and 2,970 were suicides, which are much easier to do with a gun than any other way.

Now we have yet more stopped Valentines.

____________________________

  • * We must dedicate ourselves to crushing the political careers of these greedy cowards, hypocrites – you pick the word – who allow this carnage to happen. They weenie out of accountability, essentially saying, “Hey, I didn’t pull the trigger.” They justify gun ownership for any moron with a few bucks, this on the basis of a fraudulent reading of the Second Amendment and a baseless claim of freedom.
  • They continue to make it so very easy for people to go first to the Dark Side, then to a gun store, then to a school campus to start shooting people to death.
  • Fire the bastards!

____________________________

No post tomorrow. See you Sunday.

______________________________

  • Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:
  • Fire the bastards!
  • The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.


    Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take a lot of us to get the job done.

    And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

    Thanks!

    The Fine Print:

    1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings, so don’t bug me about it.
    2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
    3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
    4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
    5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.

    JA


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

Truly Nuts


Where the Hell Are You?

No, not you. The Democratic Party.

President Biden addressed the DNC on Monday and named Trump’s unpaid-for tax cuts for rich people a terrible thing. What percentage of voters do you suppose has a clue what “unpaid for” means in terms of how it impacts them or our country?

Where’s the message, “The Republicans are stealing your future, giving it to super rich guys and making everything you buy cost you more right now“?

Where’s, “These guys have fought against everything that could help you afford food, medications, gas for your car – everything”?

Where’s, “These guys have already stolen your reproductive freedom and are promising to steal  more rights and even your vote. Tell them to get the hell out of your way!”?

This really isn’t hard to do.

“Ohio needs an ass kicker not an ass kisser” Tim Ryan, referring to the proximity of Vance’s lips to Trump’s ass.

In the race for the Ohio Senate seat, Tim Ryan is being outspent about four to one by J.D. Vance and the Republican PACs, but Ryan is making this a race that’s within the polling margin of error. Here’s how he’s doing it: He’s beating the snot out of that Trump sucking weasel, Vance, and doing it all factually and accurately.

In contrast, Democratic candidate for governor of Arizona Katie Hobbs is as milquetoast as can be and is getting whomped by telegenic enemy of freedom and democracy, Kari Lake. Lake is a stop-the-steal conspiracy suck up and should be an easy target, but nobody’s shooting political arrows at her.

Other than Tim Ryan, Eric Swalwell, John Fetterman and Val Demings (credit to Evan McMullin in Utah, but he’s an Independent), the Ds don’t seem to have the street fighters it needs to win. Worse, their national party seems to be empty of compelling messages. They always bring an organic banana to an AR-15 fight.

I get solicitations from dozens of Democratic candidates and from the DNC, DSCC and DCCC, all with a hand out. Few of these guys have a compelling message to influence me to contribute or support them in any way. Pretty much all they say is, “We can’t let the other guys win,” or, “I need your help.”

That’s your best shot, Democrats? Really? You can’t deliver a compelling message about why I should support you, and all you offer is self-serving grubbing for money? Isn’t there somebody at headquarters who’s a street fighter? Can’t you ask James Carville to pretty please come help you?

It’s the economy, stupid. It always is. And now it’s about crime, Roe and democracy, too.

Everybody knows that, but not everybody knows that the Republicans have done all they could to make things worse for the people. Hint to DNC: You could tell that to the people!

Back in the John Boehner as Speaker of the House days the Republicans filed lawsuit after lawsuit to get rid of Obamacare, vowing to replace it with their own plan. The problem was that the Republicans didn’t have a plan and they still don’t. All they really intended to do was to get rid of the Affordable Care Act that has helped so many millions of Americans. “We can’t have legislation that actually helps people,” Republicans claimed, although they used different words. Finally, someone told the American people the truth about the Republicans and their healthcare plan.

Alan Grayson, former Democratic congressman from Florida, is the one who outlined the real Republican healthcare plan. He presented their plan on the floor of the House, explaining that there were three provisions to it:

  1. Don’t get sick.
  2. If you get sick,
  3. Die quickly.

That’s it. That’s the Republican plan. It still is. And Grayson beat the snot out of Republicans with that accurate depiction of what they really would do to Americans. Where are the people like Grayson now?

Come to think of it, hey DNC: What’s Alan Grayson up to? You really could use his help. Pick up the damn phone. Call him NOW!

Meanwhile, DNC, wake up to reality. Everything is on the line, including the very existence of the Democratic Party. This is a war for America and you can’t win it by holding up your new iPhone and displaying your Whole Foods discount app.

Here’s a crazy idea: Attack Republicans and their stop-the-steal, voter fraud claims. Challenge them to produce evidence – they can’t. Here’s a simple 3-step appeal to voters.

  1. “How do you like being lied to?”
  2. Maya Angelou instructed us “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.” The Republican Big Lie people are showing you every day who and what they are and what you can expect from them.
  3. If you want to stop being lied to, vote for the people who tell you the truth.
Congratulations, Arizona!

In Recognition of Arizona’s Groundbreaking Disdain for both Education and the Constitution

It isn’t often that a trophy can be retired due to complete and unassailable ignorance and deviousness, but the great state of Arizona will have that trophy in it’s display case in the state capitol building forever.

The extremist legislature of the Grand Canyon State has passed a universal school voucher bill that will award $7,000 of taxpayer money for every child whose parents take them out of public school and plunk them into private school, even religious school. Apparently, Arizona don’ need no stinking separation of church and state.

Extremist Governor Doug Ducey is expect to sign the bill into law, thus making Arizona the very first state to officially begin to dismantle its public school system.

You may recall Betsy DeVos, Trump’s head of the Department of Education. She was the director in charge of overseeing and improving our public schools, but – and this is true – she had never so much as come close enough to a public school to touch the floor with the bottom of her Prada shoes. She did, however, champion eliminating public schools and privatizing all education, just as though she knew what she was doing. Regarding the trophy winning bill, one of her former assistants said that Arizona “just took first place” when it comes to school choice.

“School choice” is a happy sounding name for destroying public education, cheating taxpayers and stuffing undeserved money into rich guys’ pockets. Now the formerly traveling Trophy for Education and Constitution Disdain will forever reside in Phoenix.

This is exactly the kind of thing authoritarian Republicans are doing all across the nation. So, you better vote for Democrats. They’re the only sane, Constitutional choices for you and your kids.

“If we continue in this direction, we already know how it turns out: with a corrupt one-party government that favors an elite few and mires the rest of us in a world without recourse to legal equality or economic security.” – Prof. Heather Cox Richardson.

————————————

Our governance and electoral corruption and dysfunction and our ongoing mass murders are all of a piece, all the same problem with the same solution:

Fire the bastards!

The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

Did someone forward this post to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!) It’s going to take a lot of us to get the job done.

And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

Thanks!

The Fine Print:

  1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings, so don’t bug me about it.
  2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
  3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
  4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
  5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town or neighborhood vibrant.

JA

 


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

Symphonietta in the Key of Sarcasm


COVID is OVER!

That’s what they tell us. You know these experts, the screamers at our school board meetings, the politicians sucking up to extremists, the puffed up people crashing maskless into shops having signs on their doors reading, “Masks required,” the temper tantrum idiots at 35,000 feet attacking flight attendants, the fools filing fraudulent lawsuits against our schools and those hundreds of thousands of our unvaccinated with breathing tubes down their throats, yet still in denial. Those people.

They’re sure it’s over. And thank goodness that’s so, because they’re tired of the terrible burden of doing their part. There is no end to their suffering from a little mask.

They really do have challenges with their kids having had to Zoom school or wear a mask all day – that part is real. But these moms and dads are just fine if their kids’ teachers get infected by their unmasked, little Petri dish darlings. At least those moms and dads don’t have the terrible, crushing burdens of both parenthood and citizenship at the same time anymore, because Covid is over. *

On this wonderful end to the pandemic,

No doubt the 31,830 Americans who were diagnosed today will be thrilled to learn that Covid is over. So will the 1,126 people who died from Covid today and all 997,933 who have died since this pandemic began. Oh, wait: they can’t be thrilled to learn that because they’re dead.

Our long Covid sufferers who can’t put together 2 hours of feeling strong will rejoice to discover that their Covid is over.

And, of course, our millions of immunocompromised and high-risk folks can now dance on tippy-toes in the grocery store, because buying a sack of groceries is no longer a death-defying act because Covid can no longer touch them.

And those new variants in Europe and elsewhere, I’m sure there won’t be yet another spike in the graphs when they show up on our doorstep – or in our lungs, right?

Yup, Covid is over. Pass the word.

Best Congressional News!

Our proudly dysfunctional Senate has done something amazing: they passed a bill on just a voice vote to make daylight savings time permanent. It is not currently known how many senators actually knew that a vote was being taken.

So, soon we’ll have no more onerous changing of the clocks twice a year and having to fumble with the one on the microwave. Nosiree, not for us. These courageous senators proudly stood for the right of every patriotic American to live in the Founding Fathers’ vision of freedom from clock setting.

We have only to wait for this bill to zip through the House and then we’ll be free at last, free at last, thank God Almighty we’ll be free at last from the tyranny of setting clocks twice a year.

Similarly, Congress, in a bold bipartisan act, has bravely marched our country forward with the full-throated renaming of some unknown number of post offices. And isn’t that what we really want Congress to tackle – new names for old post offices?

Never mind that the Senate refuses to deal with gun safety issues, even as more blood baths happen almost daily in our way-too-heavily-armed nation. Not gonna do anything about climate change, either, even as it kills thousands of people every year and which may well drown our coastal cities and much of the Florida peninsula and which will make much of the world uninhabitable.

And with this evenly divided Senate that just loves its filibusters and dithering at the edges of loyalty, we don’t have to worry about any social programs being so much as considered, much less passed. Take that, you food stamp takers! You early childhood education freeloaders! You daycare dabblers! You medical cost moaners!

There’s more, of course, but for now just bask in the comfort of knowing that nothing important is getting done, but – good news! – you won’t have to deal with that microwave clock, thanks to our hard working Congress.

—————————–

* “You must never so much as think whether you like it or not, whether it is bearable or not; you must never think of anything except the need, and how to meet it.”

Clara Barton, 1821-1912

Founder of the American Red Cross

————————————

The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

Did someone forward this to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!)

And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

Thanks!

The Fine Print:

  1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings, so don’t bug me about it.
  2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
  3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
  4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
  5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town vibrant.

JA


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

Potpourri-v14.0


What are we handing to the next generation? Attribution unknown

Does It Feel Hot In Here To You?

A short time ago I posted a piece about global warming. In case you are a denier, you need to know a few more things, so, in no particular order,

  1. Any discussion about global warming needs to be grounded in facts. Not fantasies. Not wishes. Not conspiracy theories fed to you by blabbers on a power trip or from any of the mealy-mouthed liars.
  2. Politicians who deny or weasel about global warming (I’m looking at you, Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Ron DeSantis, Rand Paul and more) are nothing more than short-term thinking, self-serving pocket lint to the fossil fuel industries. What do you suppose it’s like living in Charles Koch’s trouser pocket? Or living life as an asterisk on the balance sheet of Exxon? That’s where our elected deniers live.
  3. Data comes out in a steady drumbeat of messages telling us our time is running out for maintaining this planet as capable of sustaining 7.75 billion human lives.
    1. See the teaser to the right and click through to read the story. What do you suppose this means to the millions of Americans who live there? If you call that area home, how will it work for you to be without water?
    2. There is danger that deniers will say that this report proves that global warming is natural and that mankind has not grossly distorted this into an existential threat. These people are categorized as reality morons. Ignore them because they are incapable of learning. And don’t be one of them.
    3. That worst drought in 12 centuries story is just one example. Think: the increasing frequency and intensity of hurricanes that cause billions of dollars of damage every year to our Gulf Coast; the 200 mile long path of devastation from one tornado – in winter; over 100° F. north of the Arctic Circle; melting of permafrost and the consequential gassing out of methane, an atmosphere warmer 84 times more powerful than carbon dioxide. There are plenty more examples of atmospheric messages of doom that we deny at our own peril. This stuff is happening and it’s getting worse really fast, regardless of any denial of the facts.
  4. My friend David Houle is a futurist and is deeply involved in dealing with global warming issues, so,
    1. Read this to get an idea of what we are facing. It’s about what we must do to anticipate coming disasters, like sea level rise that will make our coastal cities uninhabitable in less that 20 years. Yes, really.
    2. Read this and study the chart – it will make your eyes pop. And pay attention to what has caused that hockey stick graph.
    3. Subscribe to David’s posts and figure out how you’re going to help. We all will saddle up when the question of our very survival is in our faces. The question now is whether we will be as smart as a squirrel. Instead of waiting for disaster to strike, will we take action to limit the threat that we know is coming – like what squirrels do before winter arrives?
  5. Tell your children what you’re doing right now to ensure their future safety and even their survival. They’re already clear about what’s coming and they’re furious over the intransigence of so many who are putting their lives in danger – see the pic top-right above. So, check their reaction when you tell them you’re a denier. And brace yourself, because their reaction won’t be pretty. Perhaps after they’ve explained things to you, you’ll be willing to reconsider. That would be nice.

From the 2012 World Economic Forum in Davos:

“We are using 50 percent more resources than the earth can support. Today we are living as if we had 1 1/2 planets,” Leape said.

“If we continue like this, by 2050 we will need three planets. Our pattern of consumption is unsustainable.”

And things have become worse since then.

Our problem, of course, is that we only have one planet. Do you think we should do something about that math imbalance?

How Come?

There are reasons why some don’t trust the COVID vaccines. And there are reasons why some feel disrespected in general and are ripe for the picking by liars and conspiracy spinners. Read this from STAT:

Perhaps lack of respect has something to do with our severe cultural conflict and why you and Uncle Bob can’t talk with one another any more.

What If We Help Ourselves?

I’ve been wondering for over 20 years why there isn’t a robust and sustained “Buy American” campaign. The truth is that we can’t buy cheap stuff at Walmart and also have our good paying American jobs, because the math of having both just doesn’t work. So, how come that campaign isn’t happening?

We all know that the manufacturing jobs went away a long time ago – millions of them. That brought us those cheap goods. It also shuttered our factories and delivered massive un- and underemployment and disillusionment. It killed factory towns, undermined trust and amped up anger.

In a piece examining a possible post pax-Americana, Bret Stephens of the New York Times wrote,

“Instead of depending on China for low-cost manufacturing and labor, we reinvest in American workers and factories and become independent in everything from energy to microchips.”

Indeed, what if we did that? What if we told the ultra-wealthy and the big corporations that they will re-shore their manufacturing or pay a huge penalty? What if we were to take care of our poor and middle class citizens by enabling them/us to live in dignity and security?

What if we were to Buy American and thereby help Americans?

Winning Elections
I called the Wisconsin Democrats twice offering to volunteer to help by using my writing and public speaking skills. Two staffers took my messages and I never heard from anyone. That’s strange, because Ben Wikler, the head of the organization, is begging for volunteer help. How will they win elections if they ignore offers of help?
.
Perhaps President Biden can set Democrats on a useful course. He can do that by following the advice and direction of David Axelrod. He lays it out clearly in this piece. It has to do with respect, humility and empathy, things Biden is usually pretty good at delivering.
.
Further, here’s my suggested battle plan:
.
PRESIDENT BIDEN AND ALL DEMOCRATS MUST NAME WHAT AMERICANS WANT * AND THEN BLAME REPUBLICANS FOR THEIR NOT HAVING IT.
.
You know – like they’re in a street fight and are throwing their best punches by telling the truth.
.

Plus, somebody should return my phone calls. ***

Just In Case You Want Us To Keep Our Democracy

Lots to be said about this and many books have been written about it in just the past few years, like How Democracies Die, On Tyranny, How Fascism Works and more. It’s critical that we be clear-headed about where the power lies that is undermining our democracy and that we learn how to defeat it. That is the point of David Pepper’s book Laboratories of Autocracy.** Spoiler alert: It’s in the states.

Sheila Markin posted a guest essay from Pepper and I encourage you to read it and then buy and read his book. Learn what we can and must do.

But only in case you want us to keep our democracy.

And read Gail Collins’ Opinion piece, Should We Blame Mitch McConnell or Brad Pitt?

——————————

* Read Thom Hartmann’s post which includes a short list of those things we want but are denied. To the issues he lists you can add gun safety laws, stopping global warming, universal healthcare, clean, lead-free water, cheaper rugs, universal low cost, high speed internet access, debt-free public education, high speed mass transit and more. We don’t want brain-free, simple, non-solutions to complex problems from con artists. We want real solutions from adults.

I’ll say it again: This is not a center-right nation. We the People want those progressive things.

** See Fine Print #5 below.

*** Late addition: I made the same offer of help to Adam Kinzinger’s Country First organization and just heard back from them. Dunno yet where this goes.

————————————

The days are dwindling for us to take action. Get up! Do something to make things better.

Did someone forward this to you? Welcome! Please subscribe – use the simple form above on the right. And pass this along to three others, encouraging them to subscribe, too. (IT’S A FREEBIE!)

And add your comments below to help us all to be better informed.

Thanks!

The Fine Print:

  1. Writings quoted or linked from my posts reflect a point I want to make, at least in part. That does not mean that I endorse or agree with everything in such writings, so don’t bug me about it.
  2. There are lots of smart, well-informed people. Sometimes we agree; sometimes we don’t. Search for others’ views and decide for yourself.
  3. Errors in fact, grammar, spelling and punctuation are all embarrassingly mine. Glad to have your corrections.
  4. Responsibility for the content of these posts is unequivocally, totally, unavoidably mine.
  5. Book links to Amazon are provided for reference only. Please purchase your books through your local mom & pop bookstore. Keep them and your town vibrant.

JA


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

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