Falling For It

This Is First Because .  .  .

From Reuters. Click the map for the full story as of 3-5-22 and for a full size, easy-to-read map.

.  .  .  it’s the very most important. By far. it’s life-or-death.

You know what’s going on in Ukraine. The spirit and courage of the Ukrainians to fight for their freedom is inspiring the world. So is the generosity and friendship of the neighboring Poles, Hungarians and others who are feeding, clothing and ministering to hundreds of thousands of cold Ukrainian refugees – mothers, children, babies, grandmas and some grandpas. You’ve seen the videos, so you know that all of these people need help, especially as Putin’s army bombards and strangles the Ukrainian cities.

Congressman Adam Kinzinger (you know him – one of the last Republicans with a spine and a sense of integrity) has put together a vehicle to help the Ukrainians, so go to this page on his website and give all you can to the Stand With Ukraine Fund. 100% of your donation will go toward supporting the Ukrainian people. Just read the short description and you’ll understand.

Yes, I know you are bombarded by people and causes vying for your contribution. I’ve received 15 solicitations just from Val Demings in the last day-and-a-half. But this is different and you know in your bones that it is. Click through and separate some bucks from your wallet for the sake of these desperate people. Now is a really good time to do that. I just did it myself. *

What’s In A Name?

George W. Bush started two unprovoked wars. That is a fact, not an opinion. He justified the attack on Iraq by falsely conflating Saddam Hussein (fiercely secular) with the 9/11 attack by al Qaeda (fiercely religious). And he also told us that, by golly, Saddam just wasn’t a nice guy, so he had to go.

He justified a wholesale attack on all of Afghanistan by saying that Osama bin Laden was hiding there. He wasn’t.

But that wasn’t enough for this president, so he marshaled through legislation to give him special powers to prosecute these wars. Most notorious was the Patriot Act.

It’s common for legislation to be named for the purpose of garnering support for it, and what red, white and blue American wouldn’t be in favor of a Patriot Act? There’s just one thing: it wasn’t patriotic.

One of the Patriot Act’s key provisions was to allow illegal, warrant-less wiretapping of Americans’ communications. If you’re okay with such lawlessness, we’re going to send you to remedial civics class.

The point of presenting that is to highlight that the same thing is being done in the states right now to disenfranchise Americans through disingenuously named legislation. Here’s an example.

Texas passed its Election Integrity Law. Great name. Here’s what it does:

  1. It prohibits 24-hour voting, which was really important for shift workers.
  2. It bans drive-through voting. That was really popular because of the pandemic.
  3. It makes it a felony (i.e. jail time) for any public official to send a mail-in ballot that wasn’t specifically requested.
  4. Partisan poll watchers can spy on voters as they vote and snoop on election officials following an election.

That’s just a sampling. Does any of that sound like greater election integrity to you? Me neither. It sounds much more like ways to stop citizens from voting. And that’s just Texas.

Here’s a link to a summary compiled by the Brennan Center of new laws in lots of states designed to prevent American citizens from voting, especially Black, young and poor citizens. Every one of these laws carries a chest thumping patriotic name in order to garner support for doing unpatriotic things.

Who’s doing this stuff?


From former Republican, former Rep. David Jolly (R-FL), speaking to Ali Velshi on MSNBC, February 28, 2022:

“I think the greatest casualty of the last 10 years for the GOP is that it’s no longer a serious party. What I mean by that is, look, a serious party and a serious Congress and, honestly, regardless of Republican or Democratic, in the initial days of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, would have said in concert, together, that Congress stands ready to provide Joe Biden and the western alliance every resource that is needed to stop the aggression we’re seeing from Russia. That’s it.

“‘We’re here to do our job to provide resources to protect the security of the world.’

“That’s not today’s Republican Party. It is no longer a serious party.” **

To be fair, the Republican Party, the one which recently declared that the January 6 insurrection was ‘legitimate political discourse” and which Mike Pence declared was “misunderstood,” is serious about one thing: promoting its minority power.

Here’s Thom Hartmann’s detailed look at the poverty, disease and death the GOP brings to us with its disingenuousness and its sole focus on having power instead of meeting the needs of our country.

These are the people working every day to rig our elections so that they, the minority, can hold power over the majority of Americans. And they paper over their dishonesty using patriotic sounding labels – just like Texas and George W. Bush did.

Are we dumb enough to fall for that?

Speaking of Falling For It

President Biden delivered his first State of the Union address (SOTU) on March first. He called on us to come together to solve America’s vexing challenges, including stopping a megalomaniac Russian dictator.

Naturally, the Republicans got their chance to attack Biden after his address, so Iowa Republican governor Kim Reynolds sounded off with a standard list of Republican grievances (and also non-grievances constructed to sound like grievances), false accusations and a whitewashing of Republican attacks on democracy and standard GOP appeals to autocracy. Her rant was carefully crafted to stoke cultural conflict. I confess that I was unable to listen to all of her comments due to an overload of her dumb. Here’s what was dumber.

Three different Democrats somehow felt compelled to give their own presentations following the SOTU address. They delivered messages that detracted from Biden’s and they effectively did a fine job of making it look like Democrats couldn’t even agree to hold hands crossing the street.

This is as dumb as chants of “defund the police” and the way-too-public Build Back Better Act wars within the Democratic Party.

What independent voters would embrace that chaos? Why would anyone vote for a candidate of a party that can’t agree on what day it is? And, no, “We have a big tent” doesn’t excuse this self-sabotage and relying on “We’re not Republicans” just doesn’t cut it.

Worse, they’re doing this dumb stuff at this critical time when our democracy itself is on the line. For details on that, see my upcoming post, Stop the Steal, on March 9.

This display of Democratic bamboozling earns the Party the special award displayed to the right. I’m fearful that some Democrats might think this is an honor.

From the “Hard To Believe News Department”

Sen. Lindsay Graham (R-SC) has managed to say the most colossally stupid and self-destructive thing in connection with the Russian invasion of Ukraine. He called for someone to assassinate Vladimir Putin. Whatever daydreams you may have had about what to do about this megalomaniac murderer, you aren’t the senior senator from South Carolina braying your idiocy on Fox and in your Twitter feed.

What makes Graham’s statement so harmful is that it gave Putin propaganda to feed the Russian people that he is fighting against savage America and the west, rather than invading Ukraine unprovoked and murdering its citizens. Graham’s words undermine all that President Biden and America and the rest of the free world are doing to stop a murderer.

Your face should be contorted into a “WHAT?!?”

Maybe we should give Graham an award, with him as the guy with the gun and America as the foot.


From The Hill, March 2:

“The House passed a resolution on Wednesday to declare support for Ukraine’s sovereignty in the face of the invasion ordered by Russian President Vladimir Putin, while urging an ‘immediate cease-fire.’

“Lawmakers in both parties voted near-unanimously in favor of the resolution, 426-3. The only votes in opposition were from three Republicans: Reps. Paul Gosar [R-AZ], Thomas Massie [R-KY] and Matt Rosendale [R-MT].”

Over a million Ukrainians, mostly women, children and old people, have fled their country in the cold of winter with only the few things they could carry. Their sons, brothers, fathers and grandfathers have been left behind to fight Putin’s cruelty, as their cities are being bombed into rubble. Thousands have been killed, including babies and children, and many times that number have been wounded. And 3 Republican congressmen voted against a resolution in support of the Ukrainian people.

Your face should again be contorted into a “WHAT?!?” right now.

Reread David Jolly’s comments above about the not-serious party.


You heard right. There was nearly continuous heckling from members of Congress during the President’s State Of The Union speech. It was Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert who blabbed their hystrionic lunacy while serious issues were being addressed. This is what unstable people do when they’ve been properly constrained from legislative work due to their destructive tendencies.

Because it’s no surprise and you know who and what they are, sadly, your face should not be contorted into a “WHAT?!?” right now.


Mission Accomplished” is what he said in 2003. The war raged on for another 7 years killing an additional 4,100 Americans and unknown tens of thousands of Iraqis.

COVID was killing over 2,400 Americans per day for months. Now 1,892 are dying daily. Is it time to spike the ball in the end zone? Here’s a link to the story.

* I am taking it on faith that this fund is as presented and can offer no guarantees. Still, I kicked in $100.

** Read Robert Reich’s piece in The Guardian, Putinism is Breeding in the Heart of the Republican Party.


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