Today mark’s the official opening of the 2018 hurricane season and the American territory of Puerto Rico, and its millions of American citizens, is ill prepared for the arrival the hurricane that will most surely pay them a visit this summer. The island is far from recovering last year’s category four hurricane Maria. So little attention is given that it’s easy to assume the administration, FEMA, and Trump have forgotten it exists.
And, according to Media Matters, we can add cable news channels to the list of those whose eyes have turned elsewhere.
“On Tuesday, two things happened: A New England Journal of Medicine article by Harvard researchers argued that the death toll from Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico was most likely thousands higher than the official number of 64; and Roseanne Barr, the sitcom star, was fired for a racist Twitter rant. According to the watchdog group Media Matters, CNN devoted nearly five hours to discussing Roseanne, and just over 12 minutes to discussing Puerto Rico. The other cable news networks, Fox News and MSNBC, were similarly lopsided, with Fox spending just 48 seconds on the Puerto Rico study.”
Could one argue that America has its priorities all messed up?
The following quote was taken from the Boston Globe. If true it doesn’t say much about Trump or his followers. I don’t know which came first, Trump’s inability to spell and his poor use of grammar or, his Twitter staff deliberately dumbing down his tweets to increase his appeal to the Kool-Aid crowd. Neither speaks highly of the man and/or his administration.
“White House staffers who compose tweets for President Trump’s Twitter feed often add grammatical errors and an abundance of exclamation points to mimic him more realistically, The Boston Globe reports. Two people familiar with the process told the Globe that some of Trump’s staffers believe the error-laden tweets boost the president’s standing among his supporters by making him seem more relatable. The key features the aides use to replicate the president’s writing style include an overuse of the exclamation point, capitalization of random words, and fragmented, loosely connected ideas, according to the report. Staffers generally include three to four sample tweets in a memo to the president any time they want him to comment on a specific topic, sources told the Globe.”
My wife and I were watching Rachel Maddow last evening and most of the segments had to do with the ever growing list of potential legal problems for Trump. At some point in the program I had to hit the pause button and let off some steam.
One of the major news is Trump’s affair with, and attempt to cover up, Stormy Daniels. He’s admitted paying her to keep quiet and we know he paid another woman $150,000 to keep quiet about their long-term affair. Stormy’s lawyer, Michael Avenatti, says he is now vetting two more women who claim to have had affairs with the Donald. Trump is well-known for his adulterous affairs and maybe better known for admitting he felt empowered to grab women’s pussies. Throughout his life Trump has appeared to have been obsessed with women and sex. He once told Howard Stern that avoiding acquiring a sexually transmitted disease was his equivalent of serving in Vietnam.
Needing his ego scratched, Trump headed back to a comfortable red state last evening to suck in the love of his suckers. He continued to ensure his love struck followers that the wall is going up and the swamp is getting drained. The truth is that the wall is going nowhere and the swamp is getting wider and deeper. Trump’s administration is increasingly viewed as one of the most corrupt in decades. Here are but a few tales from the Black Lagoon.
Trump has been accused of using his money to silence charges of adulterous sexual adventures.
Trump is being sued for using his position as president to enrich his personal wealth.
Trump is a compulsive liar. Politifact has demonstrated that only 31% of Trump’s statements are true while 61% of what he says is either mostly false, false, or terribly false.
Speaking of lies… Sarah Huckabee Sanders, according to Politifact, lies 100% of the time. 75% of her statements are false and the remaining 25% are “pants on fire” false.
Trump has filled his cabinet with creatures from the Dark Lagoon. Tom Price, Steve Mnuchin, Ben Carson, and Ryan Zinke are just a few of cabinet leaders and Trump appointees who have been accused of living high off the taxpayer’s dollar.
I’m tired of being the only person with a conspiracy theory to share so I’m now taking my turn.
I turned on Morning Joe and the truth just seemed to flow forth. It began with a series of video clips of Trump talking about how greedy he is and has always been. Scarborough, having been around Trump on numerous occasions, gave credence to money being of extreme importance to Trump. He said that Trump was the guy who would not let someone else make a buck off him unless he got a cut.
The topic then turned to yesterday’s revelation that Mike Cohen had established one or more shell companies to channel money through. So far investigators have found that over four million dollars have passed through these shell companies and it seems to have come from various companies, one with foreign connections, seeking access to Trump. If this proves the case it foretells legal problems for Cohen because he has not registered as a lobbyist or agent of a foreign entity.
Unless he was lying Donald Trump was in Ohio yesterday. Like anytime he appears in public he told a large number of lies and distortions. He said work had begun on his precious Mexican border wall. It hasn’t. What he said was new construction was actually some repairs being done to an old wall.
He seemed to take credit for the initial success of the new Roseanne show. He took credit for all economic improvements and said we had never had an economy this good. Well, others get most of the credit and yes, we’ve had economic periods far better than what we now have.
For at the past week life has been like an emotional roller coaster. At one moment I find myself elated and confident about my nation’s future, followed by my cart roaring out of control down the steel tracks and I am screaming at the top of my voice.
On the down side the nation’s pseudo president hires an ideological war hawk, John Bolton, to head a department charged with providing for our security. Bolton has a life’s track record of favoring war over peace. He has openly called for the unilateral preëmptive nuclear strike by the United States against North Korea and Iran. Seeming ignorant of the cost in human lives to our allies in South Korea and Japan. Also of the loss of tens of thousands of American military person stationed in Asia.
When I moved back to Greenfield in 1970 I got a job in the local school system teaching Buckskin Elementary. There was a teacher in the high school who had his thirty years in and was ready to retire. I never knew the guy and don’t recall anything about him. The deal was that the administration and board of education decided to fire the guy on the grounds of incompetence. I don’t know how long he’d taught at McClain but there was certainly many operatives to try correcting his failures and/or firing him . Why wait until the last seconds of his career to brand his forehead with a dreaded scarlet I?
In today’s world we’re seeing the same thing happening with assistant FBI director, Andrew McCabe. Twenty six hours before he can retire, Donald Trump fires him and thus puts his reputation and pension in jeopardy.
The difference is, in the teacher’s case there didn’t seem to be any particular motivation. In McCabe’s case, however, the motivation is clear. Trump went to war with his law enforcement and intelligence agencies before even took office and that war has only grown in the subsequent fourteen months. American’s have clearly learned that Trump can’t take criticism and that any critic can expect retaliation of some kind.
While it is in Trump’s prerogative to fire McCabe is doesn’t mean it is the moral or ethical action to take. I’m sure that in my life some mentor told me that an action maybe legal but not necessarily best. Even my old gray-haired pentecostal grandma would have told me to turn the other cheek. Apparently Trump never had a mentor or an old gray-haired granny.
If your state is possibly the poorest, least educated, most conservative state in the nation; well, that’s what’s wrong with it. It also doesn’t help if your state’s flag still includes a version of the Confederate flag. Having too many of the people portrayed in the attached video also doesn’t speak well.
I’ve been to Mississippi many times and things are slowly changing. The state and local governments have done some amazing things in creating a blues and music based tourist economy. But despite the steps forward there are too many people who would take it back to the pre civil rights era. Mississippi’s overwhelming support of Donald Trump is a strong statement to this.
Couple of years ago I heard a black Mississippi judge speak of the new Mississippi. The fact that he was black and a judge speaks to things new. Unfortunately there’s too much old in Mississippi.
When I was a kid my uncle Homer owned a single shot, bolt-action, J.C. Penny .22 rifle. I would often borrow it and go “plinking” at a trash dump on Wolf Rd. Firing the weapon required opening the chamber with the bolt lever, inserting a cartridge, closing the chamber, and cocking the rifle by pulling back a firing pin mechanism. Very simple, very reliable, very accurate, and very very slow.
Some years ago I traded for a Remington semi-automatic .22 rifle with a tubular magazine that held maybe 10 rounds of long-rifle ammo. The rifle required one trigger pull per round but you could very rapidly empty the magazine. Reloading was pretty slow, nothing like ripping out an empty clip and slamming a full one in.
I’m not sure I ever fired this weapon and later gave it to my grandson along with a .22 nine round revolving target pistol.
When I was in the Navy, and later the Air Force Reserves, I got to fire a variety of weapons and became “qualified” with a couple of pistols. I fired a Garand M1 rifle, a Browning BAR, a Thompson sub-machine gun, a 38 pistol along with a .45 semi-automatic pistol. In boot camp I carried a Springfield 1903 five shot bolt-action rifle. The only one I ever actually fired was a rental I used for my one and only deer hunting experience. My boot camp 1903 didn’t even have a firing pin and the barrel may have been plugged.
I currently own a single shot .16 gauge shotgun and two revolver pistols and though I know how to use them I am not practiced.
I say all this to demonstrate that I’m not firearms ignorant and I’m not opposed to owning guns, hunting, and shooting sports. I basically support the 2nd Amendment but strongly believe, as does the Supreme Court, that it comes with limits. Government has the right to restrict many aspects of gun use and ownership. This said, however, the NRA and other groups deny the Founding Fathers meant there should be limits. They radically oppose any limits on all things gun related.
In the past few years I have wrestled with my feelings about the most controversial of all guns, the AR-15 and I’ve finally arrived at a conclusion. These “assault style” weapons are no different from the simple .22 semi-automatic I gave my grandson. You could go to a gun shop and buy the gun I gave my grandson and fewer critics would complain. But you buy that same weapon made to look like a military rifle it immediately gets labeled an assault rifle and the critics go nuts. The real difference between the civilian and the military weapons is the rate of fire. The military version has a firing option the civilian doesn’t; it can fire (depending on the model) in full-automatic or burst-automatic. Burst function lets the rifle fire three rounds with each pull of the trigger. Full-automatic will fire as long as you hold the trigger in or until you shot all the bullets. The civilian versions are legal to buy, own, and use. The military versions are mostly illegal.
These are some of the basic facts we all need to be aware of. But, in the words of Paul Harvey there is a “rest of the story.” The truth is that any semi-automatic weapon, pistol or rifle, is deadlier than single-shots because they have a much higher rate of fire. In the time it took me to shoot my uncles J.C. Higgins and reload, a ten-round semi-automatic could easily have ten bullets in the air. They could also be reloaded in less time than with my uncle’s gun.
I’m going to make a major compromise with the gun crowd and publicly state that I won’t support a ban on any gun that is currently legal. I won’t support the government coming to your door and defrocking you of your manhood unless there is reason to think you’ve broken a law. But, here’s what I won’t do:
I won’t support the NRA in any way as long as they remain the radical organization they have become. When the ammosexuals decide they are ready to give up protecting the sale of cop-killer ammo and arming the insane, maybe we can begin talking.
I won’t support the current loopholes in gun registration and sales. I demand that thorough background checks take place on each and every gun sale in the nation, even private sales. Private sales would have to go through a licensed broker who would perform the background check.
I won’t support the current manufacturer and sale of any device that increases a weapon’s rate of fire. Example the bump stock that was used by the Las Vegas shooter to turn his AR-15 into a fully automatic weapon.
I know it is controversial but I won’t support any legislation that bars the registration of all firearms.
I won’t support any legislation that bans waiting periods before buying a gun.
I will not support the continued ownership of any clip or magazine that holds more than ten rounds of ammunition. All such devices should be totally outlawed and all violations should carry a heavy penalty. General George Patton called the Garand M1 the best weapon of war ever invented. It was the rifle that won WWII, it was a semi-automatic, and it only held eight rounds. With a ten round clip a person can target shoot, hunt, protect their families, and partly get their testosterone fueled rocks off. And unfortunately, they can still wipe out a school hallway.
I won’t support the sale of any firearm or ammunition via the mail or the Internet.
I won’t oppose reasonable legislation that limits the amount of ammunition one can purchase.
I won’t support the increase of age to buy a gun. I will always believe that if being eighteen is enough for voting and military service it should be enough to buy a beer or a gun. Turning eighteen should come with all the rights of an adult.
I won’t support any decision to permit people with mental issues, a history of violence, a history of serious crime, and other issues that may threaten the public safety to purchase or possess a firearm.
I won’t support the arming of teachers. These people want to be educators and mentors to the young, not armed guards. As a retired teacher I’ve tried to imagine myself as a fit thirty year old with a weapon. Regardless of training I can’t help but think of all the things that would make that a bad idea. I doubt I could pull the trigger on a student without some delay or hesitation that would only worsen the situation. After all, if four trained sheriff deputies in Parkland, FL couldn’t do it, what makes me think the caring and loving English teacher, Ms. Jones, could do it?
This is my list at time of writing. It is subject to be added to and/or amended. I believe, however, that this is a list of sensible and reasonable gun laws. It doesn’t take away a “good person’s” gun but together it does relieve what I believe the worst truths about guns in America…there are simply too many guns and they are far too easy to acquire.
Oh, one more item for the list…I won’t vote for any politician, regardless of party, who disagrees with me and/or accepts money from the firearms industry or the NRA!
I hate it when any politician lays claim to knowing how Americans feel about something. They love to say things like, “We all know that Americans don’t approve of such ‘n such.” Well no, they don’t know that. We can take polls and try to make educated guesses but we don’t really know. Hillary Clinton losing the election proves that, everybody knew she was going to win. How’d that turn out?
Vice President Mike Pence stood before a crowd this past week and emphatically stated that all Americans knew that Obamacare was a total disaster and wanted it repealed. Pence has no greater insight into what American’s want than I do. You can turn to the polls and the only truth to his claim is that most Republicans feel that way while most Democrats feel just the opposite. The polls also say that the ACA is more popular than ever with about half the population being okay with it.
SINFUL: The king of Saudi Arabia, Salman bin Abdul Aziz is taking a nine-day trip to Indonesia. Just to make sure he’s got all the bases covered he’s taking along 506 tons of luggage. Consider this, including my house, my vehicles, and everything I own, it all wouldn’t weigh anything close to 506 tons.
FAT CATS: What do Bill Gates, Warren Buffett and Michael Bloomberg have in common? Together with five other fat cats are wealthier than the bottom half of the world’s poorest people. Gates leads the pack with a net wealth of $75 billion.
WE LOVE TO BOMB: Researchers have estimated, probably on the light side, that during the last year of Barack Obama’s administration the US military dropped 26,171 bombs on seven different nations. Continues to leave open the question of the worth of Curtis LeMay’s aerial bombardment as a workable strategy.
This past week was not comforting. Trump’s false information and lunacy wagon rolled on at full nonsense. Rachel Maddow did a revealing segment on the dishonesty for profit of the National Enquirer and other check out stand tabloid magazines. Breitbart dishonesty still held a seat at the right arm of Trump, and Vice News did an interview with the current leader of the asylum and reigning leader of the war on truth, Alex Jones. And, if you listen closely you can still hear the whiny little bitch, Rush Limbaugh, whimpering from his den of darkness.
That there is such a profitable market for such extreme entertainment does not speak well of us or our future. Add to the mix that Alex Jones said to Vice that we ain’t seen anything yet.
And by the way, check out my recent story about the website that’s keeping track of all Trump’s lies.
We are living in a post truth era and many of us seem to be enjoying it.