Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston

~~~

~~~

Tuesday, August 31, 2021

The Tragedy of Afghanistan

 



Because we give presidents credit or blame for things that happen on their watch, President Biden will be accountable for this final and tragic episode. Had Trump been re-elected things would likely have been more deadly and chaotic, and he would have publicly blamed "the generals," because, as he so often stated, he knows more than they do.

The fact is that blame goes back to G.W. Bush and continued through successive administrations. We remained this long because everyone understood an exit would be at least as messy as what happened, and they were unwilling to take the political hit. 

Also, it is long past time for Congress to take its share of responsibility for committing the country to war. They have been too cowardly to acknowledge responsibility and more than willing to cede responsibility to the executive. That enables them to claim credit when things go well and blame the president when things go wrong.

We are seeing that cynical attitude in action now.

Projecting power in a distant, destitute, tribal,  and hostile land was always going to be a challenge, given costs in lives and resources, and divisions and distractions within the US itself. President Biden had a choice: continue bleeding the US as in the last 20 years, or withdrawing now. He made a wise choice. 

Yes, the withdrawal should have been managed better, but it is not clear how much better it could have been. Partly, the US was caught in a long existing pretension about the strength of the Afghan government and military. It was a house of cards, that was bound to collapse once the props were gone.

In my opinion, the Afghan tragedy may be President Biden's responsibility for the chaotic evacuation, but not necessarily his fault.

Monday, August 30, 2021

Olivia Troye, former Trump White House national security staffer

 Olivia Troye, a former White House national security staffer during the Trump admin., sent this message as an email on behalf of the Republican Accountability Project:

"My heart breaks right now for the people of Afghanistan, and for our allies who are trapped in the country and surrounded by the Taliban. This was a disaster that never had to happen, and I hope they are evacuated quickly and safely.
I'm seeing Republicans claim that Trump would have handled the situation far better—and I know for a fact that's just not true. Until 2020, I was a national security staffer for the Trump administration, until I quit after seeing just how incompetent and cruel he was. Afghanistan was no exception.
I sat in cabinet meetings about getting Americans and our Afghan allies out of the country. In them, Stephen Miller would peddle his racist hysteria. He and his enablers across the government undermined anyone who worked on solving the issues in getting special immigrant visas (SIVs) for our Afghan allies by undermining the system at Homeland Security and the State Department.
I tracked this issue personally in my role at the White House. I met with many refugee advocate organizations who pleaded for help in getting U.S. allies through the process.
But we got nowhere because Trump and Miller had watchdogs in place at the Justice Department, Homeland Security, State and other agencies that made an already cumbersome SIV process even more challenging.
The system wouldn’t budge, no matter how much we argued in National Security Council meetings. The Pentagon weighed in, saying we needed to get these allies through the process. Mattis and others sent memos trying to help. We all knew the urgency, but we were blocked at every turn.
Good people within the Trump Administration tried to counter Miller's obstruction, but their fear of retaliation was palpable. Numerous closed door meetings were held, strategizing how to navigate this issue.
Trump had four years to develop a plan. We could have used that time to lay the groundwork to evacuate our Afghan allies. They were the lifelines for many of us who spent time in Afghanistan.
They’d been waiting a long time, all the while under the threat of death at the hands of the Taliban. The process slowed to a trickle for reviews and “other priorities.” Ultimately, they came to a halt.
I have one thing to say to Trump's defenders who are making blanket statements and pushing false narratives about Afghanistan: please, just stop. Some of you were actively involved in making it harder to get our Afghan allies to safety. Your comments are uninformed and hurtful. And we see right through you.
I’m grateful for everyone now advocating the urgency of getting our allies out of Afghanistan ASAP and those who are doing everything they can to help. This is a matter of national security.
Most importantly, it’s the least we can do for these individuals. The world is watching.
Olivia Troye
Director, Republican Accountability Project"

Sunday, August 29, 2021

YOUR SUNDAY MOMENT OF ZEN

 

His Tweet didn't age well:







Saturday, August 28, 2021

SATURDAY NIGHT DANCING

 





Anti-vax Madness

 Infidel753 has a post up on his blog about this. Go read it.


I live in a country where a large number of people refuse to take a vaccine that's been proven to be effective against COVID and could get this pandemic under control if we all cooperated and took it. 

This large number of people refuse to take it because of various unscientific, irrational reasons, most of which they've found on the intertubz or heard some wacko on FAUX NOOZ. 

One of their beliefs is that they have a "God given" immune system that will protect them. Also, they don't know "what's in the vaccine."

I wonder if any of these people ever had to take an antibiotic to cure a bacterial infection. If so, why didn't they let God cure the infection in them or their children? Would a responsible parent let a child go without medication for his/her strep throat? If they truly believe what they say about a "God given" immune system, wouldn't they just let the strep throat run its course, hoping their child would recover and not develop rheumatic fever as a result of untreated strep? How many parents would risk that, hoping a "God given" immune system would save their toddler or child, and not give that child a proven medication to cure his strep?

Did any of them ever have pneumonia and have to take penicillin? Are any of them on any kind of medication? Diabetes? High blood pressure? Cholesterol meds? Blood thinners?  Do these people know what's in any of these widely prescribed medications that millions and millions of Americans take every day? And why don't they let God cure them instead of western medicine, since as they say, "God is in control?"

Listen to these poor benighted folks convince themselves and others of their scientific ignorance:




 





*********************************


Well, well, well, looky here!  

A Conservative religious organization fired someone for speaking the truth!

Isn't it interesting how so many Conservatives whine about the "intolerant Left" that shuts down any speech they don't agree with? 





Friday, August 27, 2021

Rep. Jim Banks (R-Ind.) is urging his party to punish every lawmaker investigating the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol if Republicans take back the majority in 2022.




GOP Rep. Jim Banks:  "Republicans Have A ‘Duty’ To Punish Members Investigating Jan. 6 Riot If Republicans take back the majority in the House, Banks said there should be consequences for the lawmakers on the special committee."



Funny.

Does anyone remember the Democrats threatening punishment to anyone who called for the investigation of BENGHAZI?

The current Trumpublicans are using tactics like old time mobsters. They threaten punishment to any of their members who act in accordance with the law.

Apparently, the Trumpublican mobsters believe there should be consequences for those who want to get to the bottom of why people were trying to hang/kill Vice President Pence and harm/kill members of Congress. 

The current Trumpublican Party is nothing more than a gang of mobsters whose allegiance to their mob boss, Donald Jobless Trump, is more important than their allegiance to America and the rule of law.


To recap what the mobsters in the current Trumpublican Party are calling for:



That’s the sort of thing criminals would say about someone investigating their crimes.

Thursday, August 26, 2021

NOTICE

 

NOTE TO BLUEBULLAMERICA:  You haven't been here in a while. Hope you're okay.


To my P.E. readers and friends:


I've been busy over the past few weeks with renovations to my home. Light posting for a few more days when everything will be put back in order.

This caught my eye in a news feed -- and it's in keeping with conservative Rick Wilson's observation:


Everything Trump Touches Dies






Saturday, August 21, 2021

SATURDAY NIGHT DANCING

 Michael Jackson  Dangerous




Monday, August 16, 2021

PRESIDENT BIDEN'S STATEMENT

 








Tragic Afghanistan

UPDATE:  


The U.S. has reached a deal with the Taliban to ensure that evacuations from Kabul's airport can take place without interference from the group, according to a report by The Associated Press. 

The deal was reached in talks in Doha, Qatar, between senior Taliban officials and Gen. Frank McKenzie. The two sides apparently agreed to a "deconfliction mechanism” in which operations at the airport in Kabul are permitted to continue without interference from the Taliban. 

McKenzie reportedly told the Taliban that any interference would be met with force from the U.S. military, who would move to defend the airport if necessary. 





BY JACK BERESFORD ON 8/16/21 AT 7:22 AM EDT 

Featured as part of a section titled "President Trump Is Bringing Peace In The Middle East," the page described how the former U.S. president had "continued to take the lead in peace talks." 

The page also claims that "while President Trump has championed peace, Joe Biden has taken the lead in pushing for endless wars." 

 Abdul Ghani Baradar, the co-founder of the Taliban in Afghanistan and the organization's current political chief, was released from a Pakistani jail at the request of the US while Trump was in office.







***************************


Afghans have to decide how they want to live with each other and how much they participate in international community. 

When there has been no foreign intervention, they have as a society managed to fail at civility towards each others and outsiders. 

 Why would 300,000 trained Afghan soldiers lay down their arms against 75,000 Taliban forces? 

 If the Afghan soldiers had no interest in saving their own country and their own people, there is no reason others should continue to shed their blood to help them.



Trump's OWN WORDS TO TALIBAN: 

"It is a pleasure to talk to you.... I understand that you are fighting for your homeland. We have been there for 19 years... and withdrawal of foreign forces from Afghanistan now is in the interest of everyone."



TRUMP:

“I started the process, all the troops are coming home, they (Biden) couldn’t stop the process. 21 years is enough. They (Biden) couldn’t stop the process, they (Biden) wanted to but couldn’t stop the process.” - Trump, 1 month ago





THIS:


Seth Abramson @SethAbramson · "For those Democrats inclined to offer a knee-jerk defense of the Biden administration, remember that unlike the Republicans, we're adults: we can love America and deem it flawed; we can support Biden even as we critique some of his decisions. 

We're not a cult as the GOP is."

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Save TheChildren! Except, Ron DeSantis says NO!

 

Florida Sees Highest Rate of Children Hospitalized With COVID in U.S. 

 Source: Newsweek 

Florida is experiencing the highest rate of children hospitalized with COVID-19 across the U.S. 

 According to data from the CovKid project, which uses COVID-19 hospitalization numbers from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, as of August 7, Florida is reporting 8.1 children hospitalized with COVID-19 per 100,000 residents. 

The number of children hospitalized with COVID-19 per 100,000 residents in Florida is the highest in the nation, according to the data. 

 Data from the project also shows that over the past seven days, Florida has reported 341 new hospital admissions among those aged 17 and younger, the most in the U.S. 

 Florida is also reporting the highest rate of COVID-19 hospitalizations among those ages 18 and 19. According to the data, as of August 7, Florida reported 20.6 hospitalizations per 100,000 residents in that age group.

[skip]

While the data show that Florida is reporting the highest rate of children hospitalized with COVID-19, the federal government's hospital capacity data show that Texas is seeing the highest total number of children hospitalized with the virus. 

 As of August 11, healthdata.gov showed that Texas had 259 total pediatric patients hospitalized with COVID-19, the most in the U.S., while Florida followed with 194.


***************************




DeSantis is part of the political party that wants to overturn Roe v. Wade because they care so much about the lives of fetuses!

Apparently, the lives of  children out of the womb are not important to Trumpublicans like Governors DeSantis and Abbot.

Their ideology is more important than the lives of the children in their states. Those governors have presidential aspirations, and they need Trump's base to get to the White House. That means they have to stick to the stupid idea that wearing masks to save the lives of men, women, and children is useless and an infringement on their FREEDUMBS!

Meanwhile, children are dying.

Meanwhile, children are dying because these governors overruled the local school boards' and governments' mandates for masks.

Once upon a time, Republicans believed in local control in governing. But there are no more Republicans. What is left are TRUMPUBLICANS who are cultists in a DEATH CULT. They are stupid, foolish cultists whose allegiance is to a stupid, foolish cult leader who cares nothing for their health or well-being.

And they are sacrificing their children to this stupid cult leader.


Michael Steele, former head of the RNC on DeSantis:

 He's not a leader; he's a sycophant.



DeSantis:   How many Covid deaths in Florida are acceptable without jeopardizing my presidential prospects in 2024 GQP Primaries?

Ron DeSantis has one policy regarding COVID: How does it play to the 2024 GOP Primary electorate and Fox News?

Monday, August 9, 2021

P.E. will be down for a few days for a mini-vaca...

 

on the beautiful coast of Maine.

Be excellent to each other!









HOLD THIS THOUGHT:


Former acting AG Jeffrey Rosen testified in a closed-door hearing to the Senate Judiciary Committee FOR SEVEN HOURS about Trump's attempts to overturn the election results. 

Senator Blumenthal called Mr. Rosen’s account to Senate Judiciary “dramatic evidence of how intent Trump was in overthrowing the election.” 

It’s a very big deal that former acting Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen has eagerly testified to the DOJ and Congress about the Trump-Clark plot to overthrow the election.  A crime!

Rosen’s cooperation will hand the DOJ an easy criminal case against Trump and Jeffrey Clark.



Please note:

More context on Rosen: Congressional hearings do NOT happen on Saturdays. For 7 hours. In a closed door session. In August. Unless something is really really important. Like “a coup against the Constitution” important.









Saturday, August 7, 2021

SATURDAY NIGHT DANCING

EVERYBODY DANCE NOW!


 

FAUX NOOZ's TUCKER CARLSON ADMIRES HUNGARY'S AUTHORITARIAN STRONGMAN


Tucker Carlson, FAUX NOOZ propagandist  and frozen fish food trust fund baby, finds Hungarian anti-democracy strongman, Viktor Orban, just the perfect example of a neo-fascist model for America: 



After 11 years in almost unchallenged power, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban faces a fierce battle for re-election in eight months time, against an unusually united opposition, from left to right, which accuses him of hijacking Hungarian democracy and financially favouring his own coterie of oligarchs and loyalists. 

 Mr Orban also stands accused of using Pegasus spyware purchased from the Israeli company NSO to tap the phones and mine the personal data of up to 300 independent journalists, lawyers and businessmen not aligned with his Fidesz party. 

 The European Commission has suspended the disbursement of post-Covid EU recovery funds, citing insufficient safeguards against corruption. Nordic governments have also suspended payment of funds to NGOs, after failing to reach agreement with the government over who should disburse them. BBC WORLD NEWS

 



 

Carlson and Trump simply hate democracy. 

They can't even refer to the opposition party correctly (it's the DEMOCRATIC Party, not Democrat Party) because the word democratic conjures images of free and fair elections, majority rule, and equal rights. 

Orban will be more than happy to counsel Carlson as to the best ways to dismantle the evil democratic republic in favor of the wonders of right-wing dictatorship. At this little tête-à-tête, Carlson will be unmasked in more ways than one.

Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Florida's Governor Wants to Keep Florida Dumb and Anti-Science!

 

So Republican Governor Ron DeSantis has this meme going around his state:




 

What does it mean?


Trumpy Governor Ron DeSantis doesn't want his fellow Floridians to be like this:



"After graduating Regis High School, a private Jesuit school in Manhattan's Upper East Sidein 1958, Fauci attended the College of the Holy Cross, graduating in 1962 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in classics with a pre-med track. Fauci then attended medical school at Cornell University's Medical College (now Weill Cornell Medicine) where he graduated first in his class with a Doctor of Medicine degree in 1966. He completed an internship and residency in internal medicine at the New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center (now Weill Cornell Medical Center).[2] Career In a 2021 analysis of Google Scholar citations, Dr. Fauci ranked as the 35th most-cited living researcher. According to the Web of Science, Dr. Fauci ranked 9th out of 2.5 million authors in the field of immunology by total citation count between 1980 and January 2021. 

During the same period, he ranked 20th out of 2.4 million authors in the field of research & experimental medicine, and 132nd out of 992,000 authors in the field of general & internal medicine. Dr. Fauci has delivered major lectures all over the world and is the recipient of numerous prestigious awards, including the Presidential Medal of Freedom (the highest honor given to a civilian by the President of the United States), the National Medal of Science, the George M. Kober Medal of the Association of American Physicians, the Mary Woodard Lasker Award for Public Service, the Albany Medical Center Prize in Medicine and Biomedical Research, the Robert Koch Gold Medal, the Prince Mahidol Award, and the Canada Gairdner Global Health Award. 

 He also has received 50 honorary doctoral degrees from universities in the United States and abroad. Dr. Fauci is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Medicine, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and the American Philosophical Society, as well as other professional societies including the American College of Physicians, the American Society for Clinical Investigation, the Association of American Physicians, the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the American Association of Immunologists, and the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. 

He serves on the editorial boards of many scientific journals and as an author, coauthor, or editor of more than 1,300 scientific publications, including several textbooks.


Dr. Fauci is widely recognized for delineating the precise ways that immunosuppressive agents modulate the human immune response. He developed effective therapies for formerly fatal inflammatory and immune-mediated diseases such as polyarteritis nodosa, granulomatosis with polyangiitis (formerly Wegener's granulomatosis), and lymphomatoid granulomatosis. 

A 1985 Stanford University Arthritis Center Survey of the American Rheumatism Association membership ranked Dr. Fauci’s work on the treatment of polyarteritis nodosa and granulomatosis with polyangiitis among the most important advances in patient management in rheumatology over the previous 20 years."





Ron DeSantis's message?

Don't Fauci Florida!  

Keep Florida DUMB and ANTI-science!

Hey! It's working!!!!






From the BBC: 

The number of Covid patients in Florida hospitals has risen to a new high, breaking records set during previous waves before vaccines were available. 

US health officials say 11,515 Florida residents are currently in hospital. Many are younger and healthier than patients seen earlier in the pandemic. On Saturday, Florida set a record for most new infections in a single day. 

 Republican Governor Ron DeSantis opposes efforts to make vaccines or masks mandatory. Across the US, one in three new cases last week were recorded in Florida or Texas. 

 Hospital beds in Florida are quickly filling up. Some have already reached capacity, with patients placed in hallways, lobby waiting areas and makeshift overflow centres."

Monday, August 2, 2021

Mo Brooks and the Anti-Democracy Cult of Trump




U.S. Representative Mo Brooks (R-AL):

Mr. Brooks invoked bloodshed and death during his speech on January 6 and exhorted the participants not let the Democratic Party “steal from us our God-given right to control our nation’s destiny.”




From a friend who wishes to remain anonymous:


"That statement could only come from an elected official who took his oath of office to the Constitution without reading the fine print. 

 Under our Constitution, nobody has a "God-given right to control the nation's destiny." And the fact that Brooks (and apparently many other Republicans) believe this shows the true nature of the fight we are in. 

 Conservative "evangelical" Christianity has become a vestigial organ in our body politic. Like the appendix, it no longer serves any useful purpose, but its continued existence might be benign. However, vestigial organs can become infected, and when they do, they must be excised or they can be fatal to the host organism. 

Evangelicals were already panicked by their continued losses in the culture wars when Trump warned them that he was "their last chance." For a group that loves to wallow in martyrdom, this was like pouring gasoline on a fire. 

 What Brooks, et al, refuse to understand is that our Declaration of Independence and subsequent Constitution marked an end to the concept that any one or group had a "God-given right" to rule. The English king claimed this "divine right," and it was flatly rejected in establishing a government "of, by, and for the people." 

 The Declaration rejects the king's divine authority, and the Constitution doesn't mention "God" except to bar any religious test for public office. 

 The idea that the United States is or was intended to be a "Christian Nation" is a bigger and more dangerous lie than "election fraud," because it provides the base on which most of today's right-wing extremism sits."



Again, as I've posted here numerous times, people like Mo Brooks and his hero, Trump, show us they know nothing about our Constitutional system of government.

They are, at heart, authoritarians and a dangerous threat to our democratic republic. 

We found out just this week that a sitting POTUS, Donald J. Trump, asked the acting AG, Jeffrey Rosen, to LIE about the election, and then he, DJT, would take it from there.

This is more documented proof of Trump's fascistic tendencies and his total disregard of the laws that govern us. Like a typical dictator, he tried to take control of the DoJ and tried to coerce it to LIE for him about the election. 

Trump is a liar, a cheat, and a fraud; and with the power of the office of the presidency, he tried to overturn a legal election, WHICH HE LOST! resoundingly!

This, my friends, is how a dictatorship works.

Don't expect the right wing Evangelicals to care a wit about this shameful new information about their lying, cheating, and fraud-of-a-hero.

They're cultists, and cultists are loyal to the cult leader, not the United States of America and its laws.


Sunday, August 1, 2021

TRUMP'S Q ARMY

 


How can anyone watch this and not ask, "What the hell happened to America?"

These people are caught up in a mass psychosis and the craziest of all is Trump himself.