Clueless in Washington

As the coronavirus spreads worldwide it is clear Donald Trump is the biggest threat to the health and well-being of Americans. He began by not taking action and hiding the facts from us while U.S. intelligence agencies were warning him in January that China had a virus problem. Once he was forced to acknowledge the pandemic he went on TV to say that it was more or less just “the flu,” downplaying it for a few weeks. When experts at NIH and CDC told him of the imminent danger, he finally began to admit publicly that it really was a deadly problem and everyone had to stay home and take hygiene precautions or else.

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Is Donald Trump The Chosen One?

Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

If there are any other atheists out there who need more reasons to keep religion OUT of matters of the state, Ed Kilgore outlines a few of them here. Many of Trump’s apologists are saying that Donald is not the self-involved, narcissistic ignoramus he appears to be. Rather he is “the chosen one,” whatever the fuck that means.

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Checking Out

These self-checkout machines they have in stores suit me.

If I am buying ice cream for the third day in a row, they do not judge me. They accept my scanned products, and talk to me in a soothing voice, asking if I have a phone number I’d like to enter, how many bags am I buying, or if I am ready to pay for my purchases. It’s purely transactional, but am I there for a party? No, I am not!

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Feeder

With family members Molly the Cat and Buddy gone forever I started a couple years ago tossing random crumbs out in the backyard for any critters who happened to be interested. Turns out the neighborhood sparrows were quite interested, but they soon demanded water, too, so I put out a big bowl for them and filled it a couple of times a day.

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Sometimes It’s Just Not Funny

Donald Trump is a circus act and his presidency is little more than absurdist theater.

Source: Brett Kavanaugh’s Dangerous Right-Wing Judicial Activism

Yes, he is damaging our environment. Yes, he is enabling racists and fascists at all levels of society. Yes, he is making the U.S. look ridiculous on the world stage. Yes, his ignorance is dangerous.These situations represent real harm to our system and our people, but the destruction can be reversed, maybe in as little as a decade. So I have decided it’s better for my mental health to mock him rather than let his childish tantrums and incoherent tweeting and his obvious self-dealing raise my blood pressure.

But tomorrow is a different thing: Brett Kavanaugh starts his Senate hearing to be confirmed as a Supreme Court justice, and his presence on the Court will be something Americans will have to live with for perhaps 40 years, and for another 40 after he’s gone the decisions in which he takes part will continue to haunt the nation.  

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Random Thoughts

It’s too hot to write a coherent essay, so here’s some random noodling.

I think of Donald Trump more as a former game show host than as President of the United States. Now he’s stage-managing his second Supreme Court nomination, announcing the date he’ll announce his choice, scheduling the  reveal during nationwide prime TV time, and — I’m sure — inviting multiple candidates to be present at the proclamation, all to heighten the “suspense.”  He’s running the government just like a game show. And naturally Donald Trump is making it all about him.

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Molly the Cat is Gone

She had her way with us for 20 years…

…and now she has left us behind, left our world. I can clearly remember the day she strolled into our lives, a skinny, hungry stray kitten, eyeing my yogurt. Barb and I had both grown up with dogs, and we were unsure about this little girl. We had just moved into the house, the first place we’d had together where we could get a dog, and here was this scruffy little thing, needy, persistent, too proud to beg.

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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.