With his unsolicited warning last week where he alleged Big Businesses are inappropriately becoming involved in politics, McConnell fails to realize that the positions companies are taking against Republican efforts to attack the right of every citizen to vote freely and without burdensome restrictions is not based upon a desire to become political. Instead, it is based upon a desire to remain ethical, decent, responsible but, most of all, it is based upon the desire to remain American. Any red blooded American who believes in self-rule and the ideas of our Founding Fathers also believes in the concept that the right to vote should be made available to all American citizens.
For corporations like, Delta Airlines, MLB, Coca-Cola, Levi’s, Ford, Bank of America and hundreds of other large companies, this is not political. This is a basic right that all real Americans hold sacred. We should be making that right to vote easier for all American citizens…not more difficult. We should not be thinking up clever and insidious ways to reintroduce Jim Crow laws into our society.
In no way should the right to vote become just another inaccessible luxury to people without means, denied to people who cannot afford a car or who do not have the affluence to take time off due to unpredictable work schedules. It is a basic ternate of our American form of democracy that we consider all people. It is written in our Declaration of Independence. It is written in our Constitution. Even in cases where people do not have a license to drive because obtaining a license for something they cannot afford to use would be impractical; we need to consider these citizens.
The Republican Party has made us keenly aware of the fact that it is now the Anti-Democracy Party. The Republican Party seems to be on a terrible, un-American crusade to promote authoritarian ideas. The Republican Party lies about election fraud just like any two-bit authoritarian regime would lie in order to maintain its control.
Ironically and disturbingly, the Republican Party is committing its own fraud while doing so. It has a propaganda machine that rivals the one Nazi Germany had in the 1930’s. It promotes slogans that are just as dishonest and scary as the ones the Nazi’s promoted about winning World War I. It touts criminally inclined Reality TV Bone-Spurred autocratic leaders, giving them lead positions in their organization. The Republican Party offers these Teflon Dons immunity from anti-corruption, abuses of power and sedition laws the Dons have violated. The Republican Party is charting a course for itself that has more in common with Russia and the present anti-democratic military state of Myanmar than it does with any American ideas about liberty, justice, democracy and principles that all men are created equal.
McConnell fails to realize that participating in the democratic process is a right of every citizen even the ones that vote against him and even when he finds Big Businesses no longer will go along with his Party’s Anti-American efforts to corrupt and neuter our 244 year old experiment in self-rule. Anyone that fails to speak up for the right to vote freely and conveniently fails in their duty to be loyal to our American ideas of democracy. It would be a dereliction in citizenship for anyone not to speak up.
That’s why these companies are taking a stand against Republican efforts to dismantle our voting rights. Big Business’s reaction against these Republican efforts is not political. It’s American. It’s done out of a sense of duty and loyalty to the ideas put forth in our Declaration of Independence and in our Constitution. Voting rights are truths that are self-evident.
Apparently, real men are back and here is what they are saying…
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…just have draft-dodging bone spurs.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…think celebrated captured and tortured soldiers from Arizona who fought in Vietnam are not heroes.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…have despotic, undemocratic fantasies that the election they just lost and they, themselves, are having trouble rigging, was…rigged.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…think that soldiers who died or who were maimed while serving their country are ‘losers and suckers.’”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…fire their defense secretaries for adhering to American ideals of honor and respect for the Constitution over loyalty to a single self-aggrandizing, vindictively insecure individual.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…fire their heads of cybersecurity for contradicting their unfounded and un-democratic lies about voter fraud.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…fire naval commanders at sea for trying desperately to keep their crew safe from a deadly disease.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…hire former New York City mayors with damaged reputations as legal counselors to spread lies and attack and undermine our democracy.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…ignore Federal laws (18 U.S. Code § 1513) as they fire in retaliation decorated military intelligence officers testifying to the truth.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…demand more loyalty to themselves than they do to our Constitution.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…are good with a Sharpie Pen when hurricanes strike.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…unsuccessfully pay-off adult film actresses to keep them quite.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…are still looking for all those boat owners in North Carolina.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…ignore bounties placed on the heads of their soldiers.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…think democracy is too inconvenient and too inefficient.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…corruptly extort presidents of foreign nations by using U.S. government resources for their own personal and political gains.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…just get impeached.”
“Real men wear masks. Those who don’t…brood inside an oval office; launch endless, frivolous electoral lawsuits and never man-up to concede with honor.”
Well, there you have it. “Real men” wear masks. Doing their duty, they are protecting the ones they love, their fellow citizens and, to the extent that masks self-protect, themselves as well. All “Real Men” agree that you should wear a mask too. However, and for some reason we still don’t quite understand, after all these years, “Real Men” still don’t eat quiche?
- Wear a Mask
Wear a mask, please, and don’t go to any type of super spreader events like the ones the “Conspiracy Theorist in Chief” has recently been holding. Being mask-less, stupidly defiant, antagonistic and condescendingly inconsiderate of the health of others doesn’t really help in this fight against the pandemic. What the latter behavior will do, however, is cause the cases and the deaths to spike again.
- Vote by Mail
Please vote by mail if at all possible. Instances of voter fraud are less than 0.01%. Study after study held by Republicans, Democrats and independents, all come up with this same similar percentage of cases. And even if that percentage were higher, denying people their right to vote is not the way to properly address the issue. Only a despot would think that.
- Use Common Sense
Lastly, use common sense. It also wouldn’t hurt to consider obtaining your news from more than one source, cross-checking the facts, etc. And for Pete’s sake, don’t ever follow the advice of the “Conspiracy Theorist in Chief.” It could either kill you, like it did Herman Cain, or get you thrown into jail.
He is the “Conspiracy Theorist in Chief.” From Birther Stories to Deep State delusions to dangerous hallucinations about Election Fraud to hordes of imaginary caravanning terrorists at the border to his support of QAnon’s insane theory about a secret cabal of leading Democrats involved in a nefarious network of human trafficking, he is the king of misinformation and other flights of dangerously un-American despotic fantasies. As confirmed by his doctors in the white suits, this makes him uniquely qualified to identify elephants, but, leaving him without much ability to identify anything ever having to do with the truth, especially when it comes to COVID-19 (“Did I tell you, Bob, how dangerous this disease was in February, much deadlier than the flu but I’m down playing it because, you know, I don’t want people to panic? Plus, I like calling things that are the truth a hoax”).
Thirty one instances of suspected voter fraud out of one billion votes from 2000 – 2014. Something needs to be done about this according to fringe elements of the political spectrum. To them, that fraction of a percentage of probable voter fraud cases is way too high. For all you who are partial to statistical numbers: 0.0000031% of those votes are suspected of being fraudulent. The study was conducted by Loyola Law School Professor, Justin Levitt. Levitt is also the author of an earlier study on the same subject entitled, “The Truth about Voter Fraud.”
Similar studies confirm these results including one conducted by the Bush II administration. And the few cases that do exist may surprise you regarding who is committing these crimes. For example, a truly egregious, well publicized instance of voter fraud was committed in 2018 by Republicans in North Carolina. To increase the irony, it involved absentee voting. And then, just recently, the Republican Party in California somehow believes that they are exempt from State laws protecting registered voters against voter fraud when they decided to sponsor ballot boxes that are not owned or officially sanctioned by the State of California.
The California Republican Party is misleading voters into believing that the Republican operated drop boxes are official ballot boxes. The leaders of any other group of people involved in similar nefarious activity would be automatically hauled off to jail without a second thought since this action is typically regarded as a felony in California. Lastly, the President himself is encouraging his supporters to vote twice which is also a felony. It’s disturbing to think that a presumably respected long standing national Political Party would decide that turning to a life of crime is the only way it can win elections. It seems the ones making the most noise about voter fraud are the ones who are most often committing it.
Traditionally, the majority of absentee voters have been Republicans (including the President and the administration’s own Press Secretary—talk about Black Kettle complexes). So, if anything, voter fraud would have favored the Republicans not the Democrats if there were any merit to this erroneous claim. The assertion that there is rampant voter fraud being made by President Trump has no basis in fact. At 0.0000031%, voter fraud is virtually non-existent. The claim made by the President is itself fraudulent, dishonest and irresponsible.
Why would the President risk upsetting or alienating Republican voters and, really, all voters, by threatening to take their absentee voting rights away? Because Trump wants to give his Base something to rally behind and to hate. It’s what all demagogues do. It’s what all despicable people do who have no ethics, no morals to guide them and no integrity. If there’s nothing to hate, they’ll invent something to hate. It also sets the stage for Trump’s attempt to discredit the election results should he lose the election. This is something only a despot would do.
Even if voter fraud was rampant instead of the incredibly miniscule percentage of 0.0000031%, why would you throw the baby out with the bathwater? If you were truly concerned about election fraud, why not address the voter fraud in productive ways that improve the security of voting by mail? That way it would increase the confidence in the legitimacy of those votes. If you found the majority of voter fraud cases occurred at Polling Places, would that cause you to outlaw Polling Places? Such an action would be absurd and a deliberate attempt at destroying our right to self-rule.
We are in the middle of a pandemic that Trump initially labeled a hoax, a pandemic Trump failed to take seriously and then failed to do anything about for months. As a consequence, local governments were forced to take extreme measures absent any real leadership from the Federal government. It was a disease that Trump knew how deadly it was at the time he was calling it a hoax. This revelation caught on tape by Bob Woodward shows the dishonesty of a man who is willing to sacrifice the lives of the people of his own country in favor of what he deems to be his own favorable political fortunes. The destructive suggestion that voters should physically go to the polls to expose themselves to the very real chance that they could contract a deadly disease, a disease causing hundreds of thousands of deaths here in the United States, when there are more reasonable and safer ways of voting available to us is probably the single most irresponsible action a President has ever made in our lifetimes. This point especially resonates when you consider the President himself caught COVID-19 as a result of his own irresponsible recklessness.
For this reason and many other equally disturbing reasons, Trump is a dangerous threat to our democracy and to our country in general. Trump is especially dangerous when he advocates against our right to vote. No respectable American President dedicated to self-rule would ever advocate such a position.
Only a totalitarian leaning despot afraid of losing power would argue that your right to vote in the manner prescribed by the laws of your State should be taken away from you. If that’s not an offensive affront to our democracy, I do not know what is. A President who is against voting safely and securely should make you pause to reflect upon the stark possibility that we are truly a democracy in jeopardy. But it’s not in jeopardy because of voter fraud. It’s in jeopardy because of a different kind of fraud. And that fraud is the current occupant living in the White House.
It’s like Trump jumped out of the pages of a “Left Behind” book…he is that guy; the world leader that keeps doing unacceptable, evil, corrupt, unethical, un-American things yet people continue to follow him convinced that, somehow, all of this unacceptable, chaotic, narcissistic behavior, is making America great. And, ironically, the people who you’d least expect to follow someone like this, are following him—the very people who should have that special religious insight to know better.
Trump is the self-proclaimed 5th Avenue shooter who defends his thuggish, vigilante militia supporters whether they are White Supremacist groups in Charlottesville or presumptuous overzealous militia groups in Kenosha. Trump even defends his supporters when they are underage militia members charged with committing murder. Trump has his own Gestapo like secret police that he created from repurposed Homeland Security personnel—personnel that used to protect us from terrorist threats abroad but are now used to intimidate and threaten marching civilian mothers in Oregon protesting for justice.
At the same time, Trump claims to be the “Law and Order President who thinks all protestors marching for justice are rioters and looters. In Trump’s feeble mind, any protester marching for justice must be marching against him, right? Trump is only the “Law and Order” President for one race of people, his own. Trump is only the “Law and Order” President when they happen to be laws that apply to other people but these same laws are never to be applied to him or his supporters (i.e. Roger Stone, Michael Flynn, etc.).
People follow Trump to their own doom, like Herman Cain and other misguided conservatives, while the rest of us scratch our heads in complete horror wondering…how? How could they let somebody do this, all these self-destructive things that he does to our country, all the deaths people suffered because of Trump’s incompetent response to the pandemic, all the destruction done to our traditional American institutions like the Justice Department, all the abuses of power and all the abuses of position, all the corruption that lead to his impeachment, all the damage done to our Constitution, all the damage done to the rule of law, all the damage done to our values based upon respect for the individual, all the attacks against a person’s right to vote, all the actions to prevent votes from being delivered on time, all the remarks to persuade his supporters to break the law by voting twice, all the damage to our economy, all the actions never taken against national security threats from Russia, all the bounties on the heads of our military personnel in Afghanistan left unanswered, all the abandonment of our Kurdish allies in Syria, all the American troops pulled out of Germany and redeployed elsewhere because of all the delicate feelings that were hurt by a stately German chancellor, all the insults to our military servicemen and servicewomen who are the complete opposite of “losers” and “suckers,” all the grief he’s caused our traditional allies that have stood by us since World War II, all the bone spurs suffered in a letter from his doctor, all the incompetent conflicting messaging with the experts at the CDC, all the vindictiveness, all the petty, illegal retaliations against people who testified under oath, all the distractions, all the name calling, all the division, all the doubt, all the confusion and all the chaos?
Think about it. Who sows this type of confusion and division? What makes anyone think this is sustainable or aligned in anyway with any type of Christian thought? How do people, especially those who call themselves Christians, justify in their minds that this type of behavior is ever acceptable? Are they so bound and determined to continue to follow this world leader to their own doom as they attempt to drag the rest of us along with them into that dark un-American pit they have chosen? I, for one, am fed up and unwilling to tolerate any more of this indecency, nonsense and self-destruction. Let’s put Trump back into the pages where he belongs before it is too late for us and for our 244 year old experiment in self-rule.
The new administrative order that excludes the CDC from directly receiving data from hospitals around the country that is reported to the Federal Government is a clear attempt by a desperate individual in an ill-conceived plan to improve his political fortunes at the expense of the nation’s health and safety. By controlling the data being reported by hospitals, Trump expects he can hide and manipulate the data for his own personal benefit to spin the narrative in any way that he sees fit just like he’s always done. The truth is Trump’s enemy and just like the Devil, Trump will do anything he can to hide the truth from you by painting you a fluffy, Sharpie picture or a safe secure wall to show you how he is most able to so keenly keep out the invading hordes of foreign body antigens even if it means injecting disinfectant to do it. His objective is to deceive you into believing his many fanciful lies that will, ultimately, only lead to your own doom in the end. The story is all too common and all too familiar. It’s the story of a despot.
Meanwhile, the CDC doctors and other medical doctors around the country are left handicapped. Without access to this vitally critical information required by health professionals to aid in their efforts to stop the spread of this virus as quickly as possible, they are prevented from effectively doing their job as they work fervently around the clock to help reduce the tragically increasing number of deaths that keep occurring each day because of this pandemic. Hiding that data increases the risk faced by health workers and it also increases your own risk in being counted as a victim of this pandemic.
Trump’s disturbing self-serving, ego-centric pursuits are destroying this nation and its people by the hundreds of thousands as ICU beds fill up and places to put the bodies of those who have succumbed to this disease dwindle. Trump’s unacceptable behavior is not only becoming a more deadly menace to the effectiveness of our health system but it’s beginning to compromise our national security too. As we continue to become sicker, we are distracted from other nefarious players in the world who are already working to take advantage of the precarious situation. For example, consider the bounties placed on the heads of our military personnel in Afghanistan. The failure to act on that bit of intelligence is further indication of Trump’s inability to recognize dangerous, adversarial threats to our nation from nefarious foreign sources when it contradicts his own fanciful notions of how “he wants it to be.”
Had Trump prepared our nation like he should have months ago, had he not tossed the Pandemic Playbook prepared by the Obama Administration in the wastepaper basket when he took office, had he not fired the Pandemic Response Team in 2018, had he listen to his intelligence agencies, had he listened to the pandemic experts, had he not thought it a hoax and used his hoax story as a less than clever tool to make fun of the “Left” for the benefit of his political reelection campaign, there is every reason to believe we could have avoided the extreme shelter-in-place measures that local governments were forced to take because of Trump’s incompetence and failure in leadership. Then, later, after it appeared things were looking better, had Trump taken the advice of his experts at the CDC by not promoting the opening of America too soon and by not ignoring his responsibility to set a good example by wearing a mask, we could have avoided this sadly predictable but entirely avoidable resurgence of the virus. The unnecessary and economically destructive epidemic mess we are in is entirely the fault of Trump and his anti-science politically corrupted cronies who place their faith in ignorance and made-up tabloid conspiracy theories rather than science and reality.
Trump’s new campaign slogan seems to be: “Make America Sick Again.” It is apparently working in disturbing ways and in ways not too dissimilar from the actions that the Kremlin and/or other comparative totalitarian states might take. I’m sure the idea to control the data has nothing to do with Trump’s inexplicable peculiar fondness for Putin?
With reports about unmarked, unidentifiable Federal Agents kidnapping protestors in Portland, Oregon, questioning them, not charging them and then letting them go, we are left to grapple with yet more incomprehensible un-Democratic actions and abuses of power by a President who just does not seem to have a grasp of how democracy or the rule of law works in America. These unacceptable Gestapo like tactics are right out of a despot’s handbook. They are meant to intimidate the less powerful and used only as a means to deny citizens a voice; tactics a tyrant in a banana republic would embrace without a second thought. But, in America, it’s a violation of our Bill of Rights and of our Constitution. Is this an indication of how CDC personnel and other doctors who promote advice regarding how to decrease the risk of COVID-19 and/or other pandemic disease will be dealt with in the not too distant future when their advice contradicts the advice Trump wants to promote?
Dangerous despots are easily recognizable. We have thousands of years of history to reference in order to learn how to spot them. And this is a sure sign of one. In banana republics or in Russia, it would be a common, everyday occurrence to keep medical data intended for public review and public safety hidden from the masses. But, whoever thought it could happen in America where we are supposed to have safeguards in place to prevent this type of thing from ever happening?
This is a dangerous and an alarming turn of events that should have all Americans, regardless of Political Party, very concerned. Every American citizen who believes in freedom and liberty and the health of their loved ones should be demanding that this unacceptable and un-American self-serving action by Trump be properly reversed and corrected immediately. There is no excuse for threatening the public welfare or our stability as a democratic republic in this irresponsible way.
Freedom of information needs to be preserved. That is the American way and it’s the only way to fight this virus effectively. The CDC and the public needs to have direct access to this hospital data restored now. It’s time to just say, “No,” to “Make America Sick Again!”
Black Lives Matter not because other lives don’t but because other lives are not targeted for the color of their skin in the same way black lives are targeted. Other lives don’t garner the same automatic prejudicial suspicions nor do other lives need to worry as much about being mistaken for being a dangerous perpetrator that immediately justifies the use of excessive force against them by law enforcement officials. That latter presumption too many times has resulted in unnecessary and unjustified tragic deaths. Saying “All lives Matter” against this context then becomes an offensive remark if not as great as someone who had employed the use of an unspeakable derogatory word in their smug response to this legitimate call for justice then something very close.
Only the naively ignorant or people who have white supremacist sentiments buried in their subconscious think that “All Lives Matter” would be an appropriate response to the idea that “Black Lives Matter.” Perhaps this response that “All Lives Matter” might be said without ever realizing how dismissive they are being of the just cause that is so appropriately and passionately articulated by the “Black Lives Matter” movement. But make no mistake, responding with the statement that “All Lives Matter” is an offensive refutation of the notation that the equality and respect that is granted to all other American lives is also required to be granted to black American lives too.
The message that “Black Lives Matter” needs to be properly heard. It needs to be properly respected. It needs to be properly understood. And real reforms towards that end need to be properly implemented.
“Black Lives Matter” is not exclusive. “Black Lives Matter” is an inclusive call and, indeed, it is the God given American right to be included in the contract specified in our Declaration of Independence that emphatically states: “all men are created equal.” Along with the rights of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” is the inference that all have the right to be treated equally without prejudice in the eyes of the law, to be recognized and respected as human beings that matter
But this contract has fallen severely short when it comes to Black Lives as demonstrated time and time again when tragedies at the hands of law enforcement are more often experienced by Black American lives and less often experienced by other American lives. That’s why the only response to “Black Lives Matter” is, “yes, they absolutely do matter.” No other flippant, dismissive, knee-jerk unthoughtful, foolishly un-clever counter response can ever be acceptable if you truly believe in the rights of all people regardless of skin color, if you truly believe in the words in our Declaration of Independence that “all men are created equal” and if you truly want to celebrate our nation’s independence today as a proud American dedicated to the self-rule and the rights of all people.
So, let’s celebrate our 4th of July, our Independence Day, 2020, in a social distancing safe way but also keeping this in mind: “Black Lives Matter” so that all lives can share in our inclusive American contract defined in our Declaration of Independence that “all men are created equal.”
Friday we suffered more petty and unlawful firings by an insecure President who is afraid that his wrongdoing and his unfitness for office will continue to be exposed by honest, duty bound civil servants whose loyalty to the Constitution is suspected to be greater than their loyalty to the President. This latest firing of Steve Linick, the State Department Inspector General, is against our laws (but, so were the previous retaliatory firings). It is also against the spirit of the Constitution.
Trump’s actions are tyrannical and un-American. There are no other words to describe such corrupt, despicable and unsavory behavior. One more feather plucked towards dismantling the guardrails intended to protect our government institutions and maintain the integrity of their operations.
No conservative goal justifies Trump’s behavior nor does it justify ending credible oversight. Oversight is the necessary ingredient in a free nation wanting to be confident that their leaders are not abusing their power and that those cogs in the wheels of government are abiding by the laws of that free country. Any true, secure, confident American leader would welcome that oversight. Only the criminally inclined would show any amount of disdain for that idea.
You only have thousands of years of history with plenty of examples to educate yourself regarding what happens when you allow these types of unacceptable events to happen going as far back as to the Ancient Roman Republic and even before. Our country is at a critical junction point. We can choose the despotic path like so many banana republics and Putin’s Russia has chosen to take or we can choose the path of freedom, liberty and prosperity to be that country that stands up to tyrants and bullies around the world; to be that “Shining City on a Hill” where freedom rings loud and strong. The strength of that ring is backed-up by the credibility that only our checks and balance systems can provide.
It is the “Shining City” that President Reagan often mentioned but most notably referenced in his farewell address on January 12, 1989 when he said: “if there had to be city walls, the walls had doors, and the doors were open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here.” But, as we have seen lately, when that city becomes corrupt, there are no doors, just walls, large, tall ones, closed, isolated, caged, unthinking, science adverse where discoveries dwindle, the enlightenment, abandoned, the guardrails come off and as we have already seen with this pandemic, that choice can be absolutely deadly when that wrong path is taken.
As The Thief continues to dismantle the guardrails that once protected our system of government from tyrants, demagogues and despots bent on seeing America’s system of government based on liberty, justice and self-rule collapse into a banana republic like existence, the passively content “Deep State” believers mindlessly follow their “Great Divider.” The Senate Leadership, by their unholy acquittal of a corrupt, superficial being that led the way to a weakened treasured national document, let that monstrous genie out of the bottle—a genie they are unable to easily put back into its bottle nor do they seem to have much control over what they have unleashed.
Still they love to hear how great America is without realizing how decrepit America is really becoming. Not once do they consider how much guilt they have as they shelter themselves from the deadly virus that has overwhelmed their unprepared country. They make the new “Sign of the T” as they recount stories about the dark times when that awful and nasty “Private Email Server” almost got them in the middle of the night but, all the while, ignorant of the true darkness that they now so willingly embrace. International and domestic onlookers loyal to the ideals of republican self-rule, witnesses to a country’s senseless path towards self-destruction, watch in speechless confusion while the last flickers of light appear to fade from the beacon that once guided the free world towards the hope that respects all people’s unalienable right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as prescribed by their creator. The thief relishes in the prospects for his new dark age.