Trump

Forget About Finding the Why – We Already Know – Part 1


Post 1,011

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Hamas terrorists brutally wounded and killed thousands of Israelis on October 7. Most of the world was aghast at the massacre – right until the Israelis began doing what every other nation on Earth would do in such a situation: They hit back.

They set out to make it so that the terrorists could not attack them again. That’s a lot like the U.S. going after ISIS – you know: the be-headers of journalist Danny Pearl and many others. Most thought clobbering those terrorists was a pretty good idea. The IDF got into full motion on October 8 to do the same sort of thing. That’s when world opinion began to shift.

One of Hamas’ war crimes is that it embeds itself in civilian Palestinian infrastructure. Their doing so means that for Israel to protect itself by going after the terrorists, civilians will die. So, do a thought experiment with me.

Imagine that you’re the Prime Minister of Israel and you’re making decisions from among only terrible choices. What would you do?

Hint: A ceasefire is not an option while Hamas is still armed and prepared to kill your people; indeed, is still killing your people.

What’s your decision, Prime Minister?

Israel chose to protect its people and has been condemned internationally for doing so.

Hamas provides video and claims to have statistics of injured and killed Palestinians, especially of children and babies. They claimed that 4,737 children had been killed by the IDF by November 7. Our human empathy insists that we care. But there is no way to verify Hamas’ spectacular claims. They commonly lie for propaganda purposes and the world oddly and dumbly accepts their claims as true.

So, upon hearing these questionable claims, the world became shockingly outraged over Israelis “killing Palestinian babies” and began calling for a ceasefire. This is a stunningly effective PR campaign by Hamas. And it’s a stunningly effective counter to the Hamas killings of Israeli children and babies that Hamas videoed and posted online on October 7.

There is not now, nor has there ever been, a way to overpower the always instantaneous Arab claims of victimhood. Just a few weeks ago Hamas used its errant missile fired into a Gaza hospital parking lot to blame Israel. The world Pavlovian dog salivated.

You may also recall how expertly Yassir Arafat of the Palestine Liberation Army used this same blaming technique to point a damning finger at Israel for killing innocents. He garnered huge world support for Palestinians and condemnation of Israel. The technique is simple: “Hit and run, leave civilians in the center of the bulls eye and claim victimhood when Israel hits back.” Rope-a-dope. It worked then just as well as it does for Hamas today.

Strangely, other than on October 7 (and only on October 7) there hasn’t been world indignation about Hamas’ terrorism unleashed upon Israelis. There’s no hint of recognition of or sympathy for the thousands of Israelis killed and maimed. There’s no world outrage over Hamas continuing to fire rockets into Israeli cities to injure and kill civilians. World outrage is aimed only at Israel.

Since 2006 Palestinians have at least tolerated and sometimes supported Hamas and the cruelty it does. They allowed Hamas to embed their command centers, their weapons caches and their rocket launchers in the midst of Palestinian civilians, knowing full well that many would die if Israel chased into Gaza after the Hamas terrorists.

At this point, though, I don’t care why Palestinians agreed to risk their lives in that way or why people around the world march in mindless solidarity with terrorists. I’m out of patience with seeking to understand people who only want paroxysms of rage and violence and murder.

I don’t care about the why of the fools and the gaslighted millions who are demanding a ceasefire in Gaza, an action that would allow Hamas to rearm and attack Israelis again, exactly as they have promised to do. And I certainly don’t care about the why of protesters worldwide and their abhorrence of Israel’s actions to protect its citizens but who don’t give a damn about the terrorism done to Jews and Israelis by Hamas.

Their protests make it clear that they don’t care about the mass murders, the bombings and rocket attacks, the parents and children burned alive, the concert attendees gunned down in the desert, the babies beheaded in front of their parents, the hundreds held hostage, including Holocaust survivors. They just rage.

The death and destruction visited upon Israel really doesn’t matter to the world’s ignorant and gaslighted protesters. Here’s the quiet part said out loud:

They don’t care because the threatened and the dead Israelis are just Jews.
.

As well, that explains the indifference of so many.

Forget wondering about the why of this. The world already knows. It has always known.

For a gentler form of this message, read this short essay/poem. If you’re feeling quite brave, read it out loud.

Many thanks to SL for providing the link. And many thanks for KL for caring.

Note: To be fair, there are some rallies in support of Israel. Not many, but some.


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.

A Question For Our Trump Voters


Trump Voter, I know you weren’t appalled at hearing Trump say he could grab women between their legs whenever he wanted. You found a way to ignore it or justify it with some lame version of whataboutism. You allowed yourself to be distracted by Hillary’s emails and the claims of criminal wrongdoing that were completely unfounded, this according to then-director of the FBI James Comey. I understand your willfully excusing the inexcusable. It was easier to do that than to stand with moral courage.

I get that you completely disregard the 91 criminal counts in 4 criminal indictments lodged against this dictator wannabe. You believe the baseless Republican propaganda that the Justice Department and FBI are “weaponized” against poor victim Trump. I get that. That story bolsters the images you carry around and the anger at “the man” that burns inside you.

He calls the investigations and criminal charges the “greatest witch hunt in history,” and he might be right about that. Bear in mind, though, that sometimes we catch witches that way.

Here’s the thing I completely fail to understand.

Trump refused to visit a cemetery near Paris when he was there for a G-7 meeting in 2018. The other leaders managed to go out in the rain to pay their respects and the respects of their nations. Instead, Trump hung out in his fancy hotel and called our military men and women of WW I who are buried in that cemetery “suckers” and “losers.”

From Jeffrey Goldberg, editor of The Atlantic:

On Memorial Day 2017, Trump visited Arlington National Cemetery … He was accompanied on this visit by John Kelly, who was then the secretary of homeland security, and who would, a short time later, be named the White House chief of staff. The two men were set to visit Section 60, the 14-acre area of the cemetery that is the burial ground for those killed in America’s most recent wars.

Kelly’s son Robert is buried in Section 60. A first lieutenant in the Marine Corps, Robert Kelly was killed in 2010 in Afghanistan. He was 29. …

[A]ccording to sources with knowledge of this visit, Trump, while standing by Robert Kelly’s grave, turned directly to his father [John Kelly] and said, “I don’t get it. What was in it for them?”

Do you suppose Trump thinks Lt. Robert Kelly was a sucker and loser, that there was nothing “in it” for him? Please read the linked articles, because Trump’s disrespect, disdain and cruelty toward our fallen is even deeper than that. What do you think Trump would say of the 9,387 of our D-Day military interred in the American Cemetery at Normandy? Do you, Trump voter, agree with Trump that they were suckers and losers?

Given all that, I just don’t understand how you could vote for Trump and pledge to do it again. You do this knowing that he insults the memory of those enormously brave people who died in those awful battles fighting for you, for all of us and even for Trump. They did their duty and, as Lincoln said, gave their last full measure of devotion. They did that so that we would remain a free people and have our Constitutional rights. They did that so that Trump would have the right to his disparagement of them. They made sure you, Trump voter, would have the right to your disrespect, your meanness, your antagonistic attitude toward democracy and your steadfast loyalty to ignorance. They did that so that you’re able to support the very person who so disparages our brave ones, the Greatest Generation and the Dough Boys before them.

I don’t understand how you can do that – how you can vote for one who wipes his dirty boots on the graves of our fallen. And in the reality of that, I don’t understand how you can call yourself a true, patriotic American. So, here’s the question for you, Trump voter:

What happened to you such that you could do that?

———————————–


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.

The Problem Isn’t Woke


“Florida is where woke goes to die.”

Governor Ron DeSantis, (R-Cruelty) loves to say that in his devoid-of-personality way. It’s obvious that it tickles him to declare stupid things that elicit favor from the base. He seems to revel in encouraging exclusion, intimidation and authoritarian, anti-American behavior. He knows what makes him happy.

I tuned in to a bit of the CNN town hall with Nikki Haley and was immediately smacked in the face by her own pandering to the base and constant focus on applause lines, rather than saying anything that actually means something of value to non-extremists. She’s pretty much like DeSantis.

For example, she criticized Biden’s climate initiative to get us off our fossil fuel diet. Electric vehicles are heavier, she told us, and our bridges can’t handle that, so we’ll have to rebuild a gazillion bridges, a cost that Biden omits from the projected cost of transportation conversion.

Heavier? And if they are, is that a barrier to taking action to save the planet and ourselves? Okay, that sounds stupid, but let’s check, shall we?

Here are three popular 4-door sedans, each with room for 5 passengers:

The 2023 Tesla Model 3 has a curb weight of 3880 lbs.

The 2023 Chevrolet Malibu has a curb weight of 3159 lbs.

The 2023 Toyota Camry has a curb weight of 3340 lbs.

Okay, Nikki, you nailed the key problem. it looks like we have as much as 721 pounds of excess, bridge-crushing woke in the electric car. The mindless audience applause still rings in that auditorium.

Jake Tapper, usually a reliable interviewer who doesn’t let interviewees get away with dodging questions or giving dodgy replies, let Haley get away with her practiced, intelligence-free statements. That went on the entire time I was able to tolerate watching the spectacle.

It was very disappointing, much like the misnamed Trump town hall. That’s where CNN’s Kaitlan Collins was powerless to stem the tide – the tsunami, really – of Trump’s fact-free, self-serving delusions in the form of applause lines. The entire event, complete with no audience members who were not faithful Trumpers, was nothing more than a Trump Rally. No news or informed, intelligent ideas were to be found anywhere in the vicinity.

All of Haley’s, Trump’s and DeSantis’ anti-woke pandering is nothing more than bumper sticker fictions that call extremists to hatred and domination of unacceptable “others.” These presidential candidates are world class inciters with the finest of reality-free applause lines.

There is no “woke.”
.

That’s just a label used inflame the base, much like they use the label “Antifa.” The panderers like to call out Antifa as though it is an invading army, a threat to our country, rather than an informal collection of Americans who refuse authoritarianism and fascism. Those who identify as Antifa don’t riot, they don’t intimidate other Americans, they don’t make death threats and they do think democracy is a good thing. Imagine that!

The problem we in America have is not woke. Our problem is the haters and manipulators who try to make people afraid of their boogeyman du jour. They pander for voters’ support by inciting hatred and violence using their cruel fictions about other Americans. They are the ones who least resemble what we used to call American values and who stand in the way of our recapturing them.

There is no woke that goes to Florida to die. There is just a cadre of liars creating an incentive to hatred and violence and, perhaps, causing others to die. That’s the real threat and they put it into law, like this:

Definition: “Stand Your Ground” law. A mechanism to boil testosterone and create dead bodies. It is much beloved by haters and other insecure, cowardly people and embodies the true essence of anti-woke.

Woke Clarity From Another Source

Retired attorney and thoughtful person Ralph Bernstein leads a weekly political discussion group via Zoom. In his agendum (yes, he uses that term correctly) for yesterday’s session, he offered this discussion teaser:

Repub [sic] legislators, judges who are said to be right-wing judges, and MAGA activists have set out to trample on free speech and individual rights in the name of battling “wokeism.” If they don’t like what teachers say about history, they gag them. If they don’t like certain books, they ban them. If they don’t like a corporation defending LGBTQ rights, they retaliate against it. Their crusade has become an expression of not only white Christian nationalism but of contempt for the Constitution and the First Amendment.

If you’d like to attend and participate in Ralph’s no-charge discussions, drop him a line at [email protected].

Woke Must-Read of the Week

From the John Pavlovitz essay, Woke Will Win, June 5, 2023 (click through and read this excellent post in full):

The leveraging of irrational fear is nothing new.

Throughout history it has been the go-to tactic of the worst of politics and religion.

When you lack substantive ideas, you need an encroaching enemy to move and motivate people.

When you have nothing redemptive to offer, you have to create a violent adversary for them to run from and push back against.

When vulnerable people are placed in your path, you need to somehow turn those people into a threat to be exterminated.

If you can’t or won’t engage in difficult conversations about complex issues, you turn words into monsters:

Illegals.
CRT.
Plandemic.

The jab.
Groomers.
Woke.

Anti-Woke Book Ban Selection of the Week

If sex, adultery, slavery, sex trafficking and murder are forbidden topics, this according to the anti-wokers, then we absolutely must ban the Bible. That is a nasty set of human debauchery tales if ever there was one. These books quite obviously don’t belong in libraries, schools, homes and other places where impressionable children might come upon them.

In fact, I don’t think you should be reading such salacious material either. As Justice Potter Stewart said of pornography, “I know it when I see it.” So do you.

If you are to be a flamer who burns those awful books, you better start gathering them and tossing them into a dumpster right now. Otherwise, Ron DeSantis and those 11 crazies responsible for so much book banning are going to have all the puritanical, witchy fun, as well as the ego rush that comes from bullying.

A Peculiarity

Yesterday was June 6. On that day in 1944 we and our allies made the Normandy invasion, the major push to defeat the Nazis and bring WW II to an end. What is peculiar now is the lack of recognition of the date in the news and elsewhere. D-Day used to be a major event in the public consciousness, but apparently no longer.

It’s just my speculation, but perhaps that is happening because of the rapid loss of those of our Greatest Generation who fought for our democracy, now dying at the rate of about 180 per day. That number used to be many times greater, but, of course, there are so few left.


  • 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.

NO! v1.0


In Sam Adler-Bell’s essay The One Thing Trump Has That DeSantis Never Will, he makes distinctions between the manipulative governor and the unscrupulous Trump. He identifies their bets on campaign donors and which sections of the voting public each seems to think he can attract. Adler-Bell writes,

If [Trump’s] wager pays off, it will be a sign not just of his continued dominance over the Republican Party but also of something deeper: an ongoing revolt against “the best and brightest,” the notion that only certain people, with certain talents, credentials and subject matter expertise, are capable of governing.

A blinding flash of the obvious jumped off the page with the words “capable of governing.” It suggests that Trump is, was or would be in some way associated with the act of, the idea of, the possibility of governing.

We’ve seen the chaos for years, as he careens across his always-on performance stage, always grifting. Trump has no more relationship to governing than did Caligula. He has more in common with anarchists, who, by definition, abhor governing and government.

Many thanks to JN for this

DeSantis has no more regard for our traditions and institutions than does the twice impeached, disgraced and indicted former president. He is as narcissistic as Trump, but he does know how to push and pull the levers of governmental power, although only for his own benefit, a la Trump. Think: his ban on/prevention of actions to limit Covid deaths, which gave Florida the 12th highest death rate during the pandemic.* He’s very dangerous to those who prefer to remain alive.

Meanwhile, in this era of proxy war with Russia, mounting tensions with China, a soon to be nuclear Iran and a completely unpredictable and nuclear North Korea, this is a really good time to have the best and the brightest at the helm of this ship of state. That’s far better than to have our country controlled by short-sighted, grievance stoked, self-serving, autocracy loving faux populists.

Signing petitions is nice and protesting in the streets can be helpful and can feel empowering, but

ALL OF THE POWER COMES FROM THE VOTING BOOTH!
.

It’s long past time for tens of millions more of our voices to be heard from that powerful place saying, “NO!” Mark your calendar to do that on November 5, 2024.**

Watch for “NO!” v2.0 this Sunday, April 23.

_____________________________

* Nine of the eleven states with worse Covid death rates than Florida are solid red states. Are you seeing a picture?

** Two million registered Democrats in Florida failed to vote in 2022. Had they voted, Charlie Christ would be the governor now, having won 52.5% of the vote. We wouldn’t be facing book bans and art bans and war on Disney and the end of abortion rights. There would be no Don’t Say Gay law or immigrants shipped to Martha’s Vineyard in the dead of the night and with no preparation for them upon their arrival. All that would have been required to stop the DeSantis insanity was for we good people to say “NO!” to the crazies.


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.

Woke, Parents Rights, Covid & Court Watch


“Woke” Update 2

Given the decades of Republican and so-called conservatives’ efforts to establish absolute power and wealth into the hands of (guess who?) the wealthy, including themselves, it seems this mania to attack whatever is “woke” was inevitable. It’s undefined by those same Republicans and so-called conservatives so that they can use the term just as playground brats would, to ridicule others.

Paul Krugman has given us some definition of what “woke” is, as used by these hateful culture warriors (the brats). In his essay Wonking Out: Conservatives Face a Rude Fiscal Awokening [sic], he explains,

“So now we know what many conservatives mean by being woke: It means showing any concern for and offering any help to, Americans who are victims of adverse circumstances.”

That means that many of We The People, those whose safety and security we claim to protect, are instead blown off by Ron DeSantis, Marjorie Taylor Greene, Jim Jordan and the rest of the frothy-mouthed usual suspects.

Those suspects aren’t just brats. They are thugs.

Parents Rights

The so-called “parents rights” temper tantrums polluting our Republican controlled states have resulted in faculty firings, book bannings, book burning, race negating, history denial, bullying, board of education upheavals and more. These tirades long ago reached a level of refusal of learning that is gut wrenching to any thinking person. This is, in fact, a denial of education and learning.

Public education is for the public. All of it. It isn’t just for kids whose parents are an angry, frothing few. Surely, parents have the primary responsibility for their children’s education and should have a voice in what that looks like, even when parents don’t know much about educating kids. But public education isn’t just for a small minority of vocal thugs who want to force their narrow, angry beliefs on everyone else.

So, for parents who think the statue of David is pornographic; for parents who think Toni Morrison’s writings are racially offensive or harmful to their fragile White children; for parents who don’t want their kids to know that not every other kid is exactly like them; for parents who think their kids should be told only that Rosa Parks was a woman on a bus, this without mentioning that she was Black; for parents who want to micromanage every classroom and who just can’t abide a complete education for their kids; there are two simple solutions: either home school your kids or send them to a private school more in line with your narrow notion of education.

And you can pay the entire bill for either of those options with your own money. Vouchers transferring public education money to private schools are a scam and an offense to the Constitution.

But don’t worry. The public schools will be there for your kids when you run out of anger and money, just as the Framers intended – even if Betsy DeVos, Ron DeSantis and their private, for-profit school CEO buddies don’t like that.

Covid

“If you are up to date on your vaccines and you get treated with Paxlovid, if you get an infection, you just don’t die of this virus,” [Dr. Ashish Jha] said. “Almost every one of those [Covid] deaths [of un-vaccinated people] is preventable. And yet people are still dying [at the rate of 200 – 500 per day]. And that is the power of misinformation. That is the power of disinformation that we all have to work on countering.”

  • Dr. Ashish Jha, coordinator of the White House Covid response team,
  • speaking to an audience of physicians at a
  • conference near Boston, Friday, March 28

Even as our people die, Republicans in Congress and big megaphone blatherers continue to do diaper-clad political performances to incite an angry army of malcontents (dunno where I saw that, but I sure like it) to self-harming craziness.

It’s safe to say that we have an large part of our population that has been trained over decades to see themselves as victims of some other group of Americans, so they’re angry. They are angry to the point that they won’t do the simple things that are necessary to save their own lives, let alone the lives of Granny, their kids or the check-out lady at the supermarket. They prefer anger over continuing to live.

That’s a lot like our gun safety refusers, who love their guns more than they love their own kids – or yours.

And That Connects With .  .  .

The alt-right (aka, radical extremists) have been hyper-crazificating for at least three decades to get Americans to distrust and hate:

government

healthcare professionals

healthcare insurance

journalists

democracy

the media

all politicians with a “D” next to their name

all politicians regardless of party who don’t toe the extremist line

the courts

elections

any Democratic president

truth, justice and the American way

anybody not just like themselves

And if there are real, Earth #1 facts that refute the distrust and hate disinformation, it is labeled fake news or assigned some other form of reality dismissal. This is blind acceptance of propaganda to the point of self-reinforcing, evidence-free belief in the unbelievable. Here’s an example.

Take a look at this chart from a recent Gallup survey.

The study was done following Vice President Harris’ visit to these three African countries. You can see that roughly half of the respondents approve of our job performance there, which means that roughly half of the respondents disapprove.

Questions:

  1. What percentage of US adults can find any of those countries on a map, even if the countries are labeled?
  2. What percentage of US adults can name even one US policy regarding these nations?

Bolstered by their ignorance, half of surveyed adults disapprove of the work of our government. Hint: they were propagandized to disapprove, to believe the unbelievable.

Here’s another Gallup chart showing President Biden’s approval rating at just 40% (green). It also shows that 56% disapprove of his job performance (orange).

We can ask survey respondents the same type of questions as for the African countries and the results would yield the same kinds of answers: they really don’t know any reason for their negative opinions except that a lot of very loud, self-serving people have been exhorting them to distrust and hate, to believe the unbelievable.

Too many of our citizens have been trained that way all their lives. That sadly defines our challenge to restore our institutions, our values and our country to something that resembles a democracy.

“We live in an age of explicit disinformation—that is, disinformation that is publicly confirmed as disinformation yet still succeeds as disinformation.”

David Corn, Our Land newsletter, April 4, 2023

Court Watch

Perp walked, finger printed and indicted on 34 felony counts in New York. 

That’s one.


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.

The Through-Line


Last Sunday’s post dealt with the goal of extremist Republicans: destruction. They want to destroy democracy and replace it with autocracy – fascism. They want to destroy the Constitution and replace it with some tool of absolute power only for themselves. They want to destroy facts and truth and replace them with propaganda and self-serving fictions – “alternative facts” – which, as you know, are lies wearing an enemy uniform.

And they don’t care who gets hurt. That was perfectly captured by Trump’s soon-to-be-indicted lawyer, John Eastman, who, at the rally of insurrection on January 6, 2021, proudly declared, “We’re kicking ass and taking names!” I guess that works happily for the kickers, but not so much for the kick-ees. The bad news is that you are intended by the extremists to be one of the kick-ees.

This post is my promised through-line offering to help to explain this behavior, why the self-righteous extremists would want destruction.

I believe this is driven by a primitive, tribal fear of “others.” It is intentionally exclusionary of those not of “our clan.” It is a defense against anything different, anything that might upset what is familiar and feels safe. It is existential tribal warfare.

We pick up a major thread of this to use as example: our 400-year habit of persecuting Blacks. They are different, as White supremacists will have you know. We have bounced around hating many “others” over the centuries, too, including indigenous people (happily misnamed “Indians”), Asians, Irish, Italians, Jews, Catholics and more – really any group that isn’t Anglo-Saxon Protestant and even some who are. The problem now is that Whites are losing their place as our majority racial group and – gasp! – some of those other people have already secured some rights for themselves. Even women! If this is a zero sum game as so many believe, what’s a frightened White supremacist to do?

My stab at understanding this is aided by the pages of Andy Borowitz’s Profiles in Ignorance (see Fine Print #5 below):

“In 2020, Stuart Stevens, who worked on both of George W. Bush’s presidential campaigns, published It Was All a Lie: How the Republican Party Became Donald Trump. Stevens points out what few Republicans have acknowledged: the views that people find abhorrent in Trump make him not the antithesis of Reagan but his rightful successor. “What happens if you spend decades focused on appealing to whites and treating nonwhite voters with, at best, benign neglect?” Stevens asks.

“You get good at doing what it takes to appeal to white voters. That is the truth that led to what is famously called “the southern strategy.” That is the path that leads you to becoming what the Republican Party now proudly embraces: a white grievance party .  .  . Today, in the age of Donald Trump, the most openly racist president since Andrew Johnson or his hero Andrew Jackson (to the extent a know-nothing narcissist is capable of having a hero), many Republicans who find Trump repulsive or at least consider him abrasive and uncouth hark back to Reagan as the standard compared with whom Trump is woefully inadequate .  .  .

But in the area of race, there is a direct line from the more genteel prejudice of Ronald Reagan to the white nationalism of Donald Trump.”

“As for Reagan’s ‘civility and personal grace,’ as Peter Wehner put it, which Reagan, exactly, was he describing? The one who used racist dog whistles like ‘states’ rights’ and ‘welfare queen’? The one who said, of student protesters, ‘If it takes a bloodbath, let’s get it over with’? The one who wished that California’s hungry would contract botulism? The one who permitted his press secretary to turn AIDS into a joke? The one who called African leaders cannibals and monkeys? The Party of Reagan seems pretty recognizable to me [now].”

The through-line also picks up grievances against government. “Government is the problem,” declared Reagan at all campaign stops and at his first inaugural. It moves that line through Trump’s efforts to undermine all government, leading the way to today’s Republican Rabid Rabies Caucus. They amplify America’s original sin in order to appeal to White voters. They pick at the scabs of both real and imagined grievances, giving people something to use to justify their tribal fear-turned-to-anger-turned-to-hatred.

It didn’t start with Reagan. He was hundreds of years too late to have begun that. What he did do is to pick up the ball that Richard Nixon had carried (his “Southern Strategy”) and run way downfield with it. That was “Saint Ronny,” as the myopic, “O’ for the good old days” folks call him, but there was nothing saintly about him.

Pogo was right

Be clear that this post looks mostly at the issue of race being used to polarize our citizens. The important part is that this and more were used to lead to a violent attempt to end our democracy, commit murders and subjugate our people. Worse, some of our elected officials participated in this attempted coup to destroy our country. Here’s a list of the 147 Congressional dishonorables who violated their oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution. They instead chose to surrender their honor and integrity to a would-be tyrant in order to serve their petty selfishness. And they’re still doing that.

History is full of examples of self-serving dishonorables who stoke fear and hatred in order to seize power for themselves. Our challenge today is that many of our dishonorables are still in positions of power and influence. They stoke amygdala stimulated fear and hatred of “others” – that primitive tribal thing – and seek to crush E Pluribus Unum.

That is the through-line.

I’m not sure that John Lewis was right when he declared powerfully, “We’re better than this.”

But we could be.

Finally, this Great Trampling of Rights is well underway by these tribal terrorists. That’s what all the destruction is about. If a right is to endure, there must be a mechanism to ensure it against these assaults. So, here’s a question for us and for our rights:

What is a right without a remedy?

It seems to me that the remedy is up to us.

  • __________________________
  • 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.

Destruction


It’s painfully obvious that the primary purpose of the debt ceiling is to provide a leverage point for Republican wackos to use to pretend to be deeply concerned about government spending. They know they’re unable to club government to death like a baby seal or put it in the dryer and shrink it like a cheap wool sweater until it’s small enough to flush down the bathtub drain. Instead, they pretend that refusing to allow the government to pay its bills and holding the economy of the world hostage until they get their way is powerful negotiating juju.

Just think: They can dramatically harm hundreds of millions of Americans due to the jobs that will be wiped out and interest rates will soar and impoverish everyone. Whole industries could be wiped out. If that weren’t good enough work by the extremists, submarining American trustworthiness around the world will spread financial ruin across the globe, causing a worldwide depression. Plus, our allies will see that we aren’t reliable, so they’ll run for cover, looking for something stable to align with. Maybe Vladimir Putin, who’s stable because he kills his opponents with poison in their underwear. Good thinking, Republican financial and national security geniuses!

That begs the question of why they would want to drive all that destruction. Hint: It isn’t because they don’t want granny to receive her Social Security checks. It’s for one related and one unrelated reason.

The related reason is that they don’t want those freeloading Blacks to get any form of welfare. Not Social Security, not Medicare, not Medicaid, not food stamps – nothing. That’s because they know those people are welfare queens and young bucks up to no good. Ronald Reagan told them so, even though he was unable to point to a single person matching those descriptions that he repeated at every campaign stop in 1980 and again in 1984. The annoying fact that more Whites than any other racial group benefit from such programs doesn’t influence the calculus of these extremists about Blacks in the slightest.

The unrelated reason that’s driving all this “If I don’t get my way I’m gonna hold my breath until I turn blue!” behavior has nothing to do with debt, be it a ceiling or otherwise. These people are dedicated to tearing down our institutions, our government, our way of life and the stability of our society and our culture. They are chaos agents – anarchists – in a constant rage and without a care about who gets hurt. These are nihilists with a bottomless pit of negativity and a complete absence of moral conviction. Their goal is destruction.

Lest you think this description is overblown, listen to anything that comes out of the mouths of Jim Jordan, Marjorie Taylor-Greene, Paul Gosar, Matt Gaetz, Lauren Boebert, Louie Gohmert, Mo Brooks and the rest of the Rabid Rabies Caucus that just extorted control of the House from Kevin McCarthy. Listen to their incoherent rages and what you will hear is tear-it-down cruelty. Think: the stolen election fraud that they promoted. There is nothing they want to build. Their goal is destruction.

Who are you here for?

Democrats in the majority in the Senate and a Democrat in the White House won’t help a bit to staunch the flow of blood from school kids shot up by a mass murderer because the House extremists won’t lift a finger to make things better. Have a look at how Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) spoke to this in a House committee hearing last year. It’s clear that the Republicans on this committee had no interest in creating safety for our kids. They were just fine with the carnage – the chaos. They still are, because their goal is destruction.

DHA Secretary Alejandro Majorkas

Try this for chaos. The Republicans wail White supremacist tears about our broken immigration system (southern border only) and want to impeach Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Majorkas (a Cuban American) because it’s still broken and he’s an easy target. Yet they refuse every opportunity to take action to improve our immigration system. That’s “every” as in: every. So, the hits just keep on coming from our southern border, because

If you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got.

And it’s funny how the chaos spawners never complain about immigration at any other port of entry. Gotta wonder what that’s about. Or not, because we already know that their White Supremacist goal is destruction.

They dislike democracy because of that pesky business of others having a voice about what happens. You know: that annoying majority rule thing. Besides, democracy is slow and messy, not like autocracy where all that’s needed comes from an absolute autocrat. No, a policy of “tear it all down and leave what’s left in the hands of thugs” suits them just fine because their goal is destruction.

It’s possible that a Senate controlled by Democrats will provide the necessary shield against some of the self-destructive insanity of these people. What it will not do is allow us to raise the debt ceiling and avoid national and international disaster.

  • What was formerly common decency is now under attack from malicious thugs nearly everywhere. You can see it every day in our lying, cheating politicians, in the violent actors, like the thugs who shot up the houses and offices of Democratic politicians in Albuquerque, and in the quiet refusal of school boards to declare heritage months because they “exclude people.” That’s really woke stuff coming from people who claim to abhor woke. Worse, they refuse to teach children the whole truth and they burn books. Want chaos? Just destroy education, take away learning and stoke fear. You’ll get more chaos and destruction than you can imagine.
  • Quotations of the Week
  • But when you talk about destruction
    Don’t you know that you can count me out
  •                 “Revolution,” Lennon/McCartney
  • .
  • What are the struggles that have your name on them?
  •                      Rev. Dr. Willie Dwayne Francois III
  • Note: Look for the through-line on this destruction business in Wednesday’s post.
  • __________________________
  • 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.

Full Transcript – First Press Conference


Outside the Office of the Speaker of the House of Representatives
.

Jones:  Mr. Speaker, Cynthia Jones here – Laughing Stock News. We cover the Congress.

You know about the blistering list of lies George Santos told in order to get elected in New York’s 3rd congressional district. You’ve been asked about that repeatedly and have refused to make a statement condemning his dishonesty, much less calling for Santos’ removal from the House. Why are you so passive in the face of this enormous breach of trust?

Kevin McCarthy: We will follow the Constitution for this as for any questionable action. This matter has been referred to the House Ethics Committee and we will abide by their decision. Besides, it’s not as if the Democrats don’t lie. Why aren’t you pursuing Adam Schiff for all the unethical things he’s done?

Jones: What are the unethical things you think Representative Schiff has done?

McCarthy: Miss Jones, everybody knows about his misbehavior. People are saying – many people are telling me – he’s done terrible things.

Jones: Can you name just one thing, Mr. Speaker?

McCarthy: I’m not going to do your work for you, Miss Jones. Look it up yourself. Next.

Altschuler: Mr. Speaker, Jack Altschuler of Disambiguation News. Untangling politicians’ word salads and mis-directions. We’re still recovering from reporting on Herschel Walker.

As you know, your Republican caucus has recently dramatically reduced the power of the Ethics Committee. In addition, that committee is notorious for taking an extremely long time, sometimes years, to decide anything. Please explain why referring Representative Santos and his obvious lying to that committee is a proper path to deal with him and to restore trust in the House.

McCarthy: As I’ve said many times, he was elected to Congress by his constituents and their wishes must be followed, as well as the dictates of the Constitution.

Altschuler: First, Mr. Speaker, to be more accurate about the election, George Santos wasn’t elected to anything. His phony résumé and his phony personal history were elected. Further, the Constitution has nothing to do with a representative being a flagrant liar and subsequently being punished for lying.

McCarthy: Yes, well of course we’ll abide by the Constitution and the recommendation of the Ethics Committee. Don’t be surprised if we find Democrats have lied, too. And what about those classified documents Biden hid in his garage? Who was he making secret deals with? He could have compromised our national security! See, that’s what you journalists do. You let Democrats slide and then viciously attack Republicans.

Jones: Who told you that journalists do that, Mr. Speaker?

McCarthy: Everyone knows that, Miss Jones, if that is your name. President Trump knows that. People are saying – many people are telling me – there’s so much unfairness in the mainstream media. You’re so unfair.

Connors: Mr. Speaker, Phil Connors, Groundhog Day News. Again.

Let’s stay focused on the Santos issue.

Last week The Gallup Organization released their survey findings of who Americans trust. Only telemarketers were found to be less trustworthy than members of Congress. Aren’t you perpetuating that distrust by refusing to act promptly and decisively to deal with Mr. Santos for his blatant and pervasive lying?

McCarthy: No, not at all. The American people didn’t send us here in the majority expecting us to eat our young. Besides, he was a solid vote for me when I needed that vote. I won’t forget it, either, unless, of course, I hear from President Trump and he says to get rid of that loser.

Connors & Jones: WHAT!?!

Altschuler: So, you’re saying that you getting the Speakership was more important than the veracity of this entire institution and that you’ll dump Santos if Trump tells you to do that?

McCarthy: I’m saying that Santos can help our country by voting the way I tell him to vote, which is how President Trump tells me to vote. That’s how we’ll begin hearings into the corrupt FBI to get to the bottom of their phony investigations.

Altschuler: Mr. Speaker, you’ve spoken many times about wanting to investigate the investigators, claiming “weaponization of the federal government,” but are you aware that every FBI Director beginning with J. Edgar Hoover and up to the present has been a Republican? Does that information change your desire to make accusatory claims against the agency?

McCarthy: Absolutely not! Those people have been so unfair to President Trump with their witch hunts. They raided his home in the dead of night and all they found were a few pieces of paper, but they’re making it sound like a breach of national security or something in order to persecute him.

Altschuler: Seriously?

McCarthy: Our special subcommittee under the purview of Rep. Jim Jordan will get to the bottom of this weaponization swamp.

Repeat: Mr. Speaker, Ralph Repeat of Culture Wars Review. Reporting the oldies again and again.

Back to Representative Santos.

What do you say to the people of New York’s 3rd congressional district who feel insulted, betrayed and, as of this morning, have made it clear that they realize they have no representation in the House because George Santos has shown that his word means nothing?

McCarthy: We’ll be extra careful to consider their opinions. In fact, we’ve already told them what their opinions are. Plus, we’re ready to investigate Hunter Biden and his incriminating laptop. We’re going to get to the bottom of Benghazi, too. We’ll repeal and replace Obamacare and we’re going to expunge the impeachments of President Trump. Plus, we’ll block any socialist Democrat efforts to raise the debt ceiling. We’ll put a stop to their tax and spend craziness.

Altschuler: Mr. Speaker, your Republican caucus has promised to hamstring our nation by refusing to pay for “things such as Medicaid, food safety inspections, border control and air traffic control, to name just a handful of thousands of programs.” Does that mean you’re okay with the breaches of safety that will cause? And are you okay with the United States defaulting on its debt which the prior Congress authorized and, most importantly, with failing to protect the full faith and credit of our nation?

McCarthy: Of course. My caucus is prepared to make all abortion illegal, end or privatize all those entitlement programs, put prayer back in our school rooms and have good guys with guns everywhere to ensure our MAGA way of life, regardless of the cost to anyone or the whining of liberal economists. We know we’re right. That’s why we never listen to anyone.

Jones and others: HUH!?!

McCarthy: Of course, we’ll listen to President Trump. He’s a great businessman and an expert on economics. He knows how to make great deals to make America great again and eliminate our national debt.

Altschuler: You do know that our national debt grew 40% under Trump, right?

McCarthy: There you go with that unfair press business again. Why don’t you instead ask about Biden’s horrible judge picks and how he’s undermining our nation, like with that Ketanji woman? She’s really black, you know.

Econ: Mr. Speaker, Eric Econ of 4N – No Nonsense Numbers News, cutting through the math.

Last week Treasury Secretary Janet Yellin said, “failure to meet the government’s obligations would cause irreparable harm to the U.S. economy, the livelihoods of all Americans, and global financial stability.” How do you respond to her dire warning as you threaten governmental default?

McCarthy: That’s just socialist Democrat talk. We don’t pay any attention to it.

Altschuler: Back to George Santos, Mr. Speaker. Are you comfortable being in the House of Representatives seated just a few steps from this liar? How can you count on him to honor his oath of office to protect and defend the Constitution when nothing he says can be counted on to be truthful?

McCarthy: Easy. Watch me.

(Turning to his right) Miss .  .  .  I forgot your name.

Taylor-Greene: It’s Susie Taylor-Greene, Mr. Speaker.

McCarthy: Right

Taylor-Greene: My sister asked me to let you know that we’re behind you all the way, locked and loaded.

McCarthy: Excellent!

Now, I understand that you had a question for me about the new drapes in my Speaker’s office. They’re really beautiful and they don’t remind me of my awful predecessor at all. Be sure to look at my golden gavel, too. It’s really cool.

Altschuler: That’s not gold, Mr. Speaker. It’s a lot of brass.

  • ————————————
  • 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.

The Central Cause


“The central cause of January 6th was one man, former President Donald Trump, who many others followed. None of the events of January 6th would have happened without him.”

So declares the Executive Summary of The United States House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol. Yes, that’s the full name of the Committee and yes, the 161 pages of this Executive Summary, plus over 40 pages of footnotes, are an introduction to the full report. That will be released today and it will be a weight lifting appliance, over 1,000 pages long.

The good news is that this opening report is most readable and is remarkable for its clarity (here’s a link – see for yourself), giving the promise of similar accessibility of the full report. The bad news is the collection of despicable and dangerous people and actions it details, actions that caused the death of five people, injured 140 police officers, were a death threat to all in Congress and to the Vice President, vandalized the citadel of our democracy and nearly ended this brave experiment in self-government.

The Committee is referring the disgraced, twice-impeached former President, Donald J. Trump, to the United States Department of Justice – i.e. recommending indicting and prosecuting him – for:

  1. Obstructing an official proceeding
  2. Conspiring to defraud the United States
  3. Conspiring to make false statements
  4. Inciting insurrection

These charges are well fleshed out in the Executive Summary.

Any non-lawyer can compile a long list of Trump’s illegal actions over the past 6 horrendous years, but the Committee constrained its investigation to solely those related to his actions and those of his co-conspirators attendant to the events of January 6. Of course, these are forehead slappers for anyone who has paid attention and who is not in mindless thrall to this would-be authoritarian. pharaoh, king, monarch, fuhrer, emperor, god – choose your own label.

There are so many outrageous things detailed in this summary. Here’s just one.

John Eastman, Trump’s lawyer who crafted a multi-point, devious plan to subvert the will of the people and the Constitution, told Trump that his plan, if executed by Trump, would violate the law. Trump ignored that inconvenient fact. That surprises nobody.

Neither is anyone surprised by his cruelty toward Mike Pence or his reveling in the riot and its carnage for hours, watching it on TV from the White House dining room. Nor is anyone surprised at his ongoing lies and vitriol and grift.

As I watched the violence unfolding on that awful day I could not stop myself from yelling at the TV, “Where’s the National Guard? Where the hell is the National Guard?” Unsurprisingly, Trump never ordered them to deploy and come to the aid of the besieged Capitol Police and Metropolitan Police. Those officers were bravely trying to do the impossible and were getting severely beaten for their efforts. And they got no help.

There has been talk since the the attack that Trump ordered the DC National Guard to stand down. The preliminary report doesn’t speak to that. Perhaps the full report will.

Gov. Larry Hogan (R-MD) tried to get authorization to send the Maryland National Guard to reinforce those officers. He was refused. Perhaps the full report will speak to that, too. I assure you that the police officers who were there that day can speak to that.

When the committee comes to me for my recommendations to prevent another such episode of destruction I will have a ready answer: Install easily accessible fire hoses at strategic locations around the Capitol Building, including doors and first floor windows. Half a dozen fire hoses spraying the insurrectionists on that cold January day would have kept them out of the building and would have put down the riot.

There has been criticism claiming there were intelligence failures, but intelligence that predicted this attack was reported. Our agencies detected the planning for this attack, but they shared it – get this – with the White House and Secret Service. That’s where that kind of information is supposed to go, but this time the recipients of the information, especially the key recipient of the information, had no interest in taking action to prevent the attack. Indeed, he and they were all guns blazing to incite and expand the attack.

There is far more in this Executive Summary and I urge you to read it. You’ll learn much about so many bad guys and felons. These people are insurrectionists. They are traitors to the oath to which they swore and to our country. They are still in Congress and they walk free. So does Trump.

Outrageous, but fixable.

Meanwhile, great thanks goes to every member of the January 6th Committee for their courage, for their insistence upon finding truth, for speaking truth, for grace and clarity in their presentations, for their even-handedness, for their work to wade through over 1,100 interviews and over 1,000,000 pages of documents and for their uncompromised integrity. How very refreshing that is for all of us and o’ the joy of the beginning of a return to justice! That’s good news.

More Good News

Today is the winter solstice, the day when the sun is in it’s southernmost location in our sky, resulting in our shortest hours of daylight and our longest hours of night. The reason that’s good news is because tomorrow is the day when daylight begins to grow longer by a few seconds per day, accelerating to 2.5 minutes more per day by March 20.

That’s good news, indeed!

Meanwhile, it will be nasty, potentially killing cold in most of the country. It started a couple of days ago in parts of the lower 48 and if it hasn’t visited your door yet, it’s going to soon. Give a warm coat and hat to a homeless person – they don’t have central heating – and practice safe winter.

————————————

  • 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.

Divine? Not So Much


Hey – it’s September 11. 9/11. That date rings a bell, right?

In this constant blizzard of the absurd, where everything is BREAKING NEWS! our attention is easily diverted. Nevertheless, it’s important that we hold on to the truth of it – the horror, the political ineptitude, the generosity of strangers, the selfless courage of our first responders and the determination of the warriors on Flight 93.

This is a good day to remember that day.


The Divine Right of Trump

From Wikipedia:

“In European Christianity, the divine right of kings, divine right, or God’s mandation is a political and religious doctrine of political legitimacy of a monarchy.”

That’s very legitimizing if you’re the king.

King George III, who in 1776 was on the throne by means of just such a right, was considered by many to be a mad king. Ref: the Declaration of Independence for an astonishing and awful list of things he did. The word “mad” just might come to mind.

He manipulated rules and events to enrich himself and his wealthy aristocrats, including the notorious tax on tea that gave the East India Trading Company a virtual monopoly and triggered the Boston Tea Party. Divine source of power or not, sometimes We The People get to the point where, as Bernie Sanders likes to say, enough is enough, although I’ve never cared for that phrase when any at all is way too much.

Meanwhile, you can substitute the disgraced, twice-impeached, former president’s name for King George III in the Declaration of Independence. Then substitute Trump’s egregious wrongdoing, including his illegal, unconstitutional and immoral actions into an updated version and it’s now the Declaration of Expulsion. You’ll understand immediately that he is totally mad and why he was the loser in the 2020 election. Any of him is way too much.

Plus, there’s nothing divine about Trump. So, notwithstanding the mindless and odious Christian theocracy zealots and the “self-defining as patriots” insurrectionists, we turned him out decisively for all those mad reasons. And we’ll do so again via the voting booth, should he beat all the legal raps coming his way.

Click me

All of which is to announce to Trump and to all of his angry, frothing (some just deluded) voter base and to his vile legislative sycophants that there is no Divine Right of Trump. To paraphrase Obi Wan Kenobi, “These aren’t the leaders we’re looking for. We can go about our business of replacing them.” Here I’m working a Jedi mind trick on you.

Yoda

To be fair, Trump has one inherent right, albeit constitutional rather than divine. He has the right to be held accountable and to pay the price for his wrongdoing. It’s going to be a rocky, uncertain and dangerous road, but, quoting Yoda, “Make that happen we must. On this everything depends.”

Yoda is very wise.

Can’t Catch a Break

King Charles III

The recent anniversary and media saturation coverage of Princess Diana’s death were noteworthy for an unexpected reason.

As their marriage was devolving, both Diana and Prince Charles had extramarital affairs. She was understood and continued to be adored by the public. He was castigated. He never stood a chance, as the public took the side of the pretty princess.

Now Queen Elizabeth II has died after 16 years as a princess and 70 years as queen. She endeared herself to the public, first at age 14, as she spoke via radio to the terrified children of the empire during the blitz of WW II. She brought words of comfort, hope and strength to them. Later she greeted the troops coming home and did so much more over the decades that won over the public. And she reigned for such a long time that few can remember any other monarch.

Immediately upon her death her 73 year old son became King Charles III. It really won’t matter what he does or how well he does it. His mother was and will remain so enormously popular that he will be regarded as little more than a caretaker until his son becomes king and renewal begins.

This guy just can’t catch a break.

Here’s Maureen Dowd’s take on this.

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

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JA


Copyright 2024 by Jack Altschuler
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