Nothing Happened in Singapore

Kim and Trump Shake HandsThe summit meeting in Singapore today was a perfect Donald Trump event.

Stagecraft, suspense, pageantry, rhetoric, photo ops, but no real results. Just like on the game show that made him famous, tune in next week to see what happens. After an hour of talking, the two leaders staged a signing ceremony, of a vague document containing promises to do something in the future, full of platitudes about security and prosperity for North Korea.

I’ll be happy if our dealmaker-in-chief pulls off some kind of binding agreement that actually reduces tensions or removes the threat of nuclear war, because hey — who wants nuclear war? But I’d feel a lot better about this whole thing if somebody smarter than Donald J. Trump were over there negotiating in my name. Political and military analysts around the world are saying that the North Koreans have reneged on too many promises over the years to be taken seriously this time without a specific agreed-upon set of requirements and on-the-ground inspections to guarantee compliance, neither of which are in today’s document.

As expected, Trump has made all the concessions so far:

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Supreme Court Okays Ohio Voter Suppression Law


Source: Supreme Court says states can remove voters who skip elections, ignore warnings

The minority party in the United States — the Republicans —

— control the White House, the Senate, the House of Representatives and the majority of state governments. Because of this, they have been able to pack the Supreme Court with partisans, who are now assisting the party’s voter suppression activities. Neil Gorsuch is the only the first Trump appointee to side with the one-percenters over the rest of us. There will be more.

Today the Court agreed that the state of Ohio can purge eligible registered voters from the voter rolls if they don’t vote in two elections or if they don’t return a postcard sent to “verify” that they still want to be registered to vote. This is the strictest law in the nation, and — surprise! — it turns out that those most affected are those likely to vote Democratic: students, minorities, disabled and the elderly, for example.

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Treacherous Canadian Stabs US Prez in Back

Source: Trump backs out of joint G7 communique after accusing ‘meek and mild’ Trudeau of ‘false statements’ | The Independent

Kim Jung Un must be pleased to be sitting down with an American president…

…who has, just a few hours earlier, blown off six of America’s closest and strongest allies. Trump has already backed down on joint U.S. – South Korea military exercises at Kim’s demand. This demonstrates not only that Donald Trump is a wimp who is getting outmaneuvered, but also that he doesn’t give a fuck about the rest of the world.

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Housekeeping

Time to move on…

In recognition of the fact that revision99 now seems to have no readers at all, I have changed the title of my blogroll to “What to Read,” and I encourage all my imaginary friends to follow the links and read. I have also deleted all the old entries that link to blogs that either no longer exist or haven’t been updated in years. There are a couple of exceptions and I have my reasons, but they’re my reasons, so I won’t discuss them here.

I’m doing this because I think my affair with Facebook is coming to an end, and I’ll be moving back to this place on the web soon. It’s a lot quieter here, and that’s what I need these days.

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Roseanne Barr Now Unemployed

I never found Roseanne Barr’s style of nasty redneck humor very funny, and now that she has come out as a racist I’m not particularly surprised about that, either. I’m not a Twitter user (real men don’t tweet), so I have been unaware of her history of walking up to the line of propriety and then stepping back. This time she went too far, and good for ABC Television for dumping her and her show, despite it being a huge “hit” for them.

Roseanne’s “apology” is pathetic, too:

I apologize to Valerie Jarrett and to all Americans. I am truly sorry for making a bad joke about her politics and her looks. I should have known better. Forgive me-my joke was in bad taste.
7:33 AM – May 29, 2018

 

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Noblesse Oblige

I went to the Post Office to mail a bill this afternoon.
You’re not allowed to park — or even stop — in the drive right in front of the door, but that was OK with me. It was a little crowded in the parking lot, but in a minute I found a spot not too far from the building, parked and went in. I dropped my envelope in the slot, which always gives you a good feeling of accomplishment, doesn’t it? Then, because there was nobody else in the place, I went over to the counter and bought some stamps. Boom! Two errands done!
 
As I walked out the door I spotted a guy, Hispanic, work clothes, 55-ish, starting to walk across the drive, heading for the Post Office. Just our little community, running errands, mailing bills, doing stuff. In another ten steps we would have crossed paths. But we didn’t because just at that moment a very handsome gentleman, well-dressed, distinguished salt-and-pepper hair, rolled up in a black hundred thousand dollar AMG Mercedes, blocking both of us from proceeding.
 
Handsome Dude stopped in the no-stopping zone, zipped down his driver side window and waved a couple of envelopes at the man on foot. I couldn’t hear what was said, but the man on foot took the envelopes, waited for the Benz to move away, and proceeded into the P.O., presumably to run his own errand and the big shot’s errand, too. The big shot watched carefully, to make sure his ad hoc emissary followed orders and didn’t open his mail.
 
I don’t hate rich people. I have rich friends. At least they seem rich to me. But if you don’t have two minutes to mail your own fucking letters, and you think strangers on the street should be willing, or maybe grateful for the chance, to do your petty little chores, maybe you have been too rich for too long.
 
My Big Regret for today is that I didn’t ask the guy in the Benz if he wanted me to take his dry cleaning, but I never think of those things in time.

Is the Second Amendment Really the Last Word on Gun Rights?

Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens
Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens

Here’s another reason to vote IN EVERY ELECTION, especially the one in November of this year.

After slow-walking President Obama’s judicial appointments for eight years, Republicans are now packing the federal courts with right-wing judges, who will be making decisions about how you may live your life for the next 30 or 40 years. These are lifetime appointments and a handful of these judges will one day sit on the Supreme Court, and make further partisan decisions about gun proliferation in the United States.

In our 250-year history, it has only been ten years since a slim majority of the Supreme Court misread the 2nd Amendment and decided that everybody has a right to own a gun of any kind. That could change if we VOTE THE REPUBLICANS OUT NOW!

At New York Magazine, Ed Kilgore sheds light on how we might one day recover from the damage of the 2008 Heller decision:

Not So Long Ago, the Second Amendment Didn’t Guarantee the Right to Own a Gun

Nothing Is Sacred

I have tried to write this three times now.

There is so much B.S. surrounding the Trump Condolence Call Controversy that I keep getting sidetracked trying to include all of it. Here’s what I want to say: John Kelly is a dinosaur, and his defense of Trump is dishonest at best.

He says it’s a “sacred” thing to join the U.S. military. Of course he thinks so — he’s been in the Marines all his life. He doesn’t know better. All those young people have their reasons for joining, but it’s absurd to call it sacred. The army represents mankind’s worst failure — the failure to figure out a way to come together in peace. No doubt this was not on the minds of enlistees, but that just goes to show the pervasive influence of patriotic thinking.

Kelly and Trump have both said they knew what they were signing up for, but those kids couldn’t know what they were signing up for. No kid thinks s/he is ever going to die, much less get blown up or torn to pieces by machine gun fire. Snap out of it, General. They are not engaged in a “sacred” mission. Whatever they may think they are doing, you and I know they are defending our right to rule the world. I suppose you could call that a “sacred mission.” But honorable? Maybe not.

Kelly says the people around his son and the four who were killed two weeks ago were “the best people on earth.” How the hell does he know that? No doubt some were great people and some were assholes, but Kelly is telling us that simply by virtue of their participation in the U,S. military, they are sainted.

General Kelly also spent a little time waxing nostalgic about the place of women in the good old days, saying they were “looked upon with great honor.” Who knows why he brought that up, but could any public figure be more out of touch with the reality women have faced and continue to face in this country, from casual sexual harassment to unequal pay and treatment in the workplace? We have a long way to go in this regard, but even though we’ve made some progress Kelly seems to think women were better off in the past.

Kelly also took the opportunity to attack Florida Congresswoman Frederica Wilson on bogus grounds, which she easily refuted the following day with video evidence. To be clear, I don’t think he was lying about the congresswoman. He probably got misinformation from a staffer in the White House, someone who long ago lost sight of the difference between fact and fiction.

The victim here seems to be the good standing of General Kelly himself, heretofore seen as a stabilizing force amid the chaos of the Trump White House. At first he looked like the life preserver we could cling to for safety from the ignorant, childish president. Now it looks like he’ll be going down with the ship, too.

About the Previous Thirteen Posts

I’m a political junkie.

So when big political events take place I can’t resist going in that direction here on revision99.  But by the time of Donald Trump’s election to the office of President of the United States, Facebook had lured me away from this blog, and I posted my comments about this profoundly incompetent man there, instead of here, where they belong. Later I tried to “catch up” by copying my Facebook posts and pasting them here (the “previous 13 posts” of the title), but Trump and his circle of miscreants generated so much daily outrage fodder at such a high rate that I just couldn’t keep up with them, so I abandoned that effort.

In any case, no one needs me to tell them what damage Donald Trump is doing to the country. I won’t try to document everything, and I’m not going back to finish my copy and paste project.