QAnon nutballs think Trump will be inaugurated, today

Capitol Police are beefing up security this week at the Capitol as a precaution against potential extremist activity amid a far-right conspiracy theory that ex-President Donald Trump will rise to power on March 4, the original inauguration day for presidents before 1933.

The acting sergeant-at-arms for the House of Representatives, Timothy Blodgett, informed members of Congress on Tuesday of the increased security measures. Wednesday morning, Capitol Police released a statement that the department had “obtained intelligence that shows a possible plot to breach the Capitol by an identified militia group on Thursday, March 4.”

Yesterday, Wednesday afternoon, the House of Representatives canceled its Thursday session as a precaution…

On the other hand…

“The most prominent and most vocal QAnon promoters are not on board with the March 4 date,” said Travis View, a QAnon researcher and host of the QAnon Anonymous podcast. “Setting up big for big events and flagging that something big is going to happen, and then nothing happens, is a years-long QAnon tradition.”

There is a rumor or two floating through the most serious nutballs…the armed insurrection-types…of another try at an uprising. This is being taken seriously by law enforcement, local and national level coppers.

Me? I’ll absolutely be in front of the TV, this afternoon. I’ll be watching West Bromwich Albion vs Everton [0-1]. My wife will be watching Liverpool vs Chelsea [0-1]. We’re both Scouser supporters.

Putin will sing at Trump Inauguration – Borowitz Report

Matt Dunham/WPA Pool

❝ After having difficulty persuading prominent entertainers to participate at the event, the Trump transition team announced on Sunday that the Russian President Vladimir Putin would sing at Donald J. Trump’s Inauguration next month.

In a brief statement from the Kremlin, Putin said, “I will be most delighted to perform for my comrade.”

❝ The choice of Putin raised eyebrows in Washington, since the Russian, while famous for invading neighboring countries and imprisoning political opponents, is not particularly well known as a singer.

The Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway pushed back against such criticism during an appearance on CNN. “If we limited ourselves to people who had talent and experience, that would disqualify half of our Cabinet,” she said.

Andy Borowitz is one of my favorite madmen. A turd like Trump would probably have him shot if he thought he could get away with it. Even on Fifth Avenue.

Germany adds to its wind energy portfolio — Nordsee Ost comes online

Click to enlargeLuftfoto/Scheer

Wind energy is a vital part of a German move to a low-carbon economy, the German economic minister said during the inauguration of RWE’s Nordsee Ost wind farm.

German Economics Minister Sigmar Gabriel hosted ministers from the Group of seven industrialized economies, along with representatives from RWE, for the inauguration of the 48-turbine wind farm off the northern German coast.

“Offshore wind energy is a strategically important element of Germany’s energy and climate policy and is key to the success of the energy transition,” Gabriel said…

Germany is one of the world leaders in renewable energy, a trend established after its decision to move away from nuclear power, in the wake of the nuclear tragedy in Japan in 2011. The United Kingdom is close behind and, combined, the European Union has more than 100 gigawatts of wind power online.

Nordsee Ost has an installed capacity of 295 megawatts, enough power to meet the annual energy needs of about 320,000 households.

RWE’s project is among the largest of its kind in the world and, by year’s end, more than 40 percent of its power capacity will be generated from wind energy.

The expansion of renewable energy is one of our main growth areas and offshore wind energy will play a vital role,” Chief Executive Officer Peter Terium said. “RWE will become the third largest player in the European offshore market this year.”

Strange as it may seem to Americans, European conservatives haven’t dedicated their political careers to standing in the way of switching to renewable energy sources and walking away from unhealthy fossil fuels, uneconomic nuclear power generation.

The real owners of “our” government on display at inauguration time

Let’s hear it for Illinois!

Incoming Illinois Governor Bruce Rauner campaigned as a reformer of the state’s often corrupt politics – but, watchdog groups say activities surrounding his inauguration Monday are among the priciest of any incoming governor and take advantage of a loophole in campaign finance that allows wealthy special interests to gain access to those who hold political power…

Rauner, a Republican, is allowing corporate donors to kick in as much as $100,000 for inauguration events, and letting individuals spend up to $25,000.

It’s only about $10 million among friends. Who cares what that money could have meant to schoolkids or the unemployed? Certainly, not the governor or his buddies.

He is hardly alone. Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania, a Democrat, will accept up to $50,000 per donor. Corporate sponsorship packages for inaugural events by Scott Walker of Wisconsin and Asa Hutchinson of Arkansas, both Republicans, cost $30,000 and $25,000 respectively…

The price tag for gubernatorial inaugurations is dwarfed by presidential celebrations. President Barack Obama did not allow corporate donors for his first inauguration, though just 211 individuals covered 80 percent of the $35.3 million price tag. For his second inauguration, Obama accepted unlimited corporate donations.

Inauguration events are essentially private parties that are considered non-partisan and are funded by special committees. Under federal and state campaign laws, the inauguration committees are not required to disclose spending or donor names because the inauguration exists outside the election process. All money raised for the events is meant to cover expenses, with surpluses typically given to charity.

In recent years, the events have transformed from honorary banquets to ticketed, star-studded concerts and lavish balls. Donors gain access to events and also can get their names splashed in programs and across other marketing materials.

The process has created the perception that these are veiled opportunities for lobbyists and other corporate interests to curry favor with lawmakers…

What “created the perception” means, of course, is these are public displays of who actually holds the power of the state in their hands.

According to the Illinois Observer, Rauner and his wife are also hosting a private “business roundtable and reception” in Chicago this month that costs $25,000 per couple for both events.

Rauner Spokesman Mike Schrimpf says donors will be disclosed but would not say when. He also would not say where any surplus money would go.

I have occasionally posted, edited and participated in blogs and websites where Class Warfare is acknowledged. I admit, some of the sites that use my work not only deny such an analysis; but, the owners vigorously oppose the concept – and the reality.

Welcome to the United States of America at the beginning of the 21st Century.

Sooner or later, I am confident that more and more reality will intrude into the befuddled lives of ordinary Americans. Economic and social practices affecting all of us can’t be denied by beer commercials and glorious patriotic music forever. We are, after all, a species capable of learning from our mistakes.

I just hope it doesn’t take as long as the discovery that the Earth is round.

Obama’s 2nd Inauguration – less tension, less celebration – more confidence in the country

Barack Hussein Obama will renew his oath of office just before midday today, ceremonially marking the beginning of another four years in the White House without the clouds of economic crisis and war that hovered over his first inauguration.

Crowds that are expected to swell to an estimated 800,000 people have begun assembling on the National Mall in front of the Capitol, eager to witness the start of the president’s second term. Mr. Obama, 51, was formally sworn in during a small private ceremony at the White House residence on Sunday, the date constitutionally mandated for inauguration.

Security in Washington was tight as Mr. Obama, the nation’s first black president, prepared to deliver his second Inaugural Address from the Capitol just after noon. Speaking on the day the nation sets aside to honor the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Mr. Obama will take his oath with his hand on two Bibles: one once owned by Dr. King and another once owned by Abraham Lincoln…

Mr. Obama’s motorcade rolled slowly along Pennsylvania Avenue toward the Capitol just before 11 a.m., prompting cheers of “Obama!” from crowds lined up along the road. At the same time, members of Mr. Obama’s cabinet began assembling in the bleachers behind the president’s lectern.

Later in the day, the Obamas will lead the traditional parade down Pennsylvania Avenue toward an elaborate reviewing stand constructed in front of the White House. Celebrations are scheduled to continue late into the night at two official inaugural balls in Washington’s sprawling convention center, with performances by musical stars like Alicia Keys, Brad Paisley, Katy Perry, Smokey Robinson and Stevie Wonder. Beyoncé will sing the national anthem on Monday afternoon.

As people started gathering for the inauguration, some chose to start the day at the monument to Dr. King…

Four years ago, a huge crowd of about 1.8 million people jammed into the grassy area between the Capitol and the Washington Monument as Mr. Obama hailed the choice of “hope over fear.” That day, the new president declared the country to be “in the midst of crisis,” citing the economic collapse that was still unfolding and wars that continued to rage in Iraq and Afghanistan.

“In this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words,” Mr. Obama said in his 18-and-a-half minute speech in 2009. “With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come.”

As he delivers his second Inaugural Address, Mr. Obama is presiding over an economy that has improved and warfare that has receded. But the world remains a dangerous place, the economy is still fragile, and many of the gauzy promises of action and progress from his first address have given way to the cold realities of politics and compromise and bitter gridlock.

The New York TIMES, polite as ever, prints that last paragraph without deeper description of a Republican Party that refused to accept that our nation elected its first Black president. The most racist elements in that poor excuse for a political party broke away to form the so-called Tea Party. Like demagogues before them, they lie about patriotism and rebellion as a theme to mask racism and reactionary politics.

I’ve been on that National Mall countless times. Generally to protest the evil cruds in charge of American foreign policy who inevitably resort to force of arms, to death and destruction to satisfy imperial greed. I’ve been there on those missions with upwards of a million and more of my fellow Americans in opposition to the VietNam war.

I’ve been on that National Mall countless times, trying to move this nation forward. Leaving racism behind, leaving institutional segregation and bigotry choking in the dust of history’s march forward. I’ve been there on that mission with upwards of a million and more of my fellow Americans to march behind Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This is an event worth watching. Personally, I don’t do inaugurations. At best they are interim steps in the fight for a better life for all of us who work for a living, for ourselves, our families, our class. Our nation. Good enough.