How many people must die?

The first deaths from COVID-19 were assumed to be in the end of February, 2020. Further testing projected that number was earlier by several weeks.

No matter. Today, we reached over a half-million deaths from this public health disaster. The sort of disaster the United States was long presumed capable of showing the world how to resolve. Unfortunately, American voters had placed a charlatan, a fraud, an incompetent in charge of leading this nation before COVID-19 struck.

Today, we arrived at a number of deaths from this disease greater than the sum of American lives taken in World War 1, World War 2. and that travesty of murder called the VietNam War. And who is truly responsible for this carnage? If you voted for Trump…if you voted for what masquerades as American conservatism, nowadays…you know who you are.

I would hope, I do hope you’ve learned something about the misleaders of America, the “leaders” of most American politics. I doubt many will ever change. I won’t try to forecast how many American voters will reflect upon this result…and change. It’s your decision.

Eideard

Racism is part of our daily life – and no surprise when it shows up in our military


Mike Blake/Reuters

The U.S. Navy’s top admiral on Tuesday condemned two new racist incidents involving hate symbols on warships, which sources said included a noose that was left on a Black sailor’s bed…

While he did not give details of the incidents, Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Mike Gilday cautioned in a message to the fleet on Tuesday that racial divisions in the ranks cut at the military’s ability to protect the country.

“If we must first question the intentions of our shipmate standing the watch with us, now, and especially, when taking fire, we will fail when the Nation needs us most in combat,” Gilday said…

Reuters was first to report last month that nearly a third of Black U.S. military servicemembers reported experiencing racial discrimination, harassment or both during a 12-month period, according to results of a long-withheld Defense Department survey.

It took appointment of the first-ever Black Secretary of Defense to drag the stink of racism in our military out into daylight…this time. No news to anyone who can remember when segregation in the US military was “official”.

Is this a brand worth buying?

With extremely rare exception, I watch Fox NOTHING! If they approached reasonable humanity, someday, in the political management of their content, I’d consider changing my attitude. Of course.

There is also no shortage of great sports programming, short fiction, long-form film-making, musical entertainment…you name it…to be found within the multiplicity of channels streaming from watchable sources available damned near everywhere. More than I can keep up with.

So, screw the pricks sucking up advertising dollar$ that benefit the current and future waves of fascist, racist, bigoted ideology that keeps the shit-end of human beings from being as poverty-stricken as their hearts and cruel minds.

Happy Birthday, Rosa Parks…

She would have been 108, today.

On Dec. 1, 1955, after working as an assistant tailor at a Montgomery, Ala., department store, a 42-year-old woman named Rosa Parks got on the Cleveland Avenue bus, sat down and was told to give up her seat for a white man who was standing. Parks calmly refused. When the driver threatened to have her arrested she replied, “you may do that.” The police were called and Parks was arrested for violating Montgomery’s racial segregation laws.

The “quality of life” in the America when I grew up. Racism and bigotry was perfectly acceptable in much of our politics…as they still are in much of our society.

Contemptible.

Cemetery apologizes for refusing burial of Black deputy sheriff


Brian Tarnowski/Guardian

The family of a Black sheriff’s deputy in Louisiana said a local cemetery declined to bury his body after he died last week due to a “whites only” policy…

Oaklin Springs cemetery confirmed to local station KPLC on Wednesday that a contract from the 1950s mentions “the right of burial of the remains of white human beings”…

The cemetery is located in Allen Parish, Louisiana – where nearly a quarter of residents are Black.

RTFA. It comes out mostly OK. Yup, I wouldn’t want to be found dead in that cemetery, either.

State that executed more prisoners than any other – may be ready to end the practice

Virginia, a state that has executed more prisoners than any other in the country, appears poised to eliminate the death penalty — a seismic shift for the state legislature, which just five years ago looked to the electric chair and secret pharmaceutical deals to keep the ultimate punishment alive.

The former capital of the Confederacy would become the first Southern state to abolish capital punishment if a bill on track to pass the Senate gets out of the House and over to the desk of Gov. Ralph Northam (D), who has promised to sign it.

A ban in Virginia could help sweep in change across the South, according to experts who say racial disparities in the death penalty’s application have roots in the region’s history of slavery and Jim Crow segregation.

You don’t need experts to validate the theory of capital punishment used as another weapon to maintain official racism, Jim Crow laws. All you ever had to do was live and work in the Solid South BITD.

Trump’s Authoritarian Moment

If there were any doubt remaining that Donald Trump still represents a dire threat to American democracy, the events of this weekend dispelled it. As a new Congress gathers to confirm that the voters chose Joe Biden to be the next President, a proceeding that should be a mere formality, Trump is desperately trying to overturn the result and stay in office. Even more disturbing, large numbers of elected Republicans are joining in this unprecedented effort to reject the popular will. If the Republic gets through the next two weeks without a catastrophe, we must surely take steps to protect ourselves against the next would-be authoritarian, which could well be Trump himself in 2024…

On Saturday, eleven more G.O.P. senators announced their intention to join more than a hundred and forty House Republicans and vote against the Electoral College electors from Georgia and five other states where Trump claims there was voter fraud. Seeking to delay or derail the congressional certification of Biden’s victory, they also demanded the appointment of a bipartisan commission to audit the election results in these states. Soon after this news emerged, Vice-President Mike Pence, a politician who gives invertebrates a bad name, issued a statement saying that he “welcomes the efforts of members of the House and Senate to use the authority they have under the law to raise objections and bring forward evidence before the Congress and the American people on January 6th.”

…In giving credence to the President’s baseless claims that he is being cheated out of office, these prominent Republicans are just making it even more likely that, at least as far as the G.O.P. is concerned, there won’t be a post-Trump future but, instead, another lengthy period in which he and his grievance continue to dominate all else.

This is the fate of a Party that has embraced a populist personality cult—Trumpism—which has recently outed itself as what Steve Schmidt, the campaign strategist who advised John McCain in 2008, called over the weekend “an American autocratic movement with Fascistic markers.” Using plainer English, Stuart Stevens, another Never Trump Republican strategist, who advised Mitt Romney in 2012, summed things up on Twitter: “The bottom line is that the @GOP has become a threat to democracy. I spent decades helping elect members of the party and it’s painful to admit. But it’s a clear and present danger and should be treated as such.” This is primarily Trump’s work, but it’s not just Trump’s work. Not by a long shot.

I was an official Young Republican once. For about three weeks…when a buddy of mine needed a few more warm bodies to help him found a chapter of Young Republicans in our Southern New England town. Then, I wished him the best of luck in his political career and returned to projects closer to my heart: playing a 12-string guitar, supporting the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, and philosophical studies in Materialist Dialectics.

Even then, I knew there was a tendency inside the “grown-up” Republican Party to rollover into a full-blown Fascist Party of Putschists.

No armbands, this time. CAPS!


“This generation’s KKK hood”

Has there ever been a piece of headwear as contentious as the Make America Great Again cap? Not since burning bras, hijabs, miniskirts, hoodies, and baggie jeans has fashion ever been so political. But the MAGA hat beats them all for the visceral hatred it both symbolises and inspires…

One of the world’s leading black fashion critics, Robin Givhan of the Washington Post wrote…”The hat has become a symbol of us vs. them, of exclusion and suspicion, of garrulous narcissism, of white male privilege, of violence and hate. For minorities and the disenfranchised, it can spark a kind of gut-level disgust that brings ancestral ghosts to the fore.”

There’s no way post-modern #merch way to wear this thing. It exists in a category of one; fascist fast fashion which does what it says on the tin: mark the wearer out as a loud and proud racist bigot.

That includes all the rationales and excuses from the wearers who know damned well what this cap and its scumbag iconography stands for. Understanding the criminal intent of the slogan is just another reason to pretend the public lies are what they really identify with.