Nel's New Day

April 26, 2020

‘You Couldn’t Make This Up’ Snippets

While the media attempts to caution the world that a deadly idea from Dictator Donald Trump (DDT) to drink bleach as a cure for COVID-19—and Dr. Deborah Birx puts her spin to protect DDT—other stupidities come out of the federal government and the nation that DDT has created.

DDT doesn’t have enough money for pandemic needs, even testing, but he can provide exorbitant amounts for his wall with no bids. On April 25, Fisher, DDT’s beloved company under investigation by the Defense Department inspector general, got a contract for $7.63 million for 800 linear feet of the slatted design of DDT’s choice—about $73,301 per foot. bid. Earlier this month, the Army gave a big GOP donor $569 million to build 17 miles of his wall–$33 million per mile and far above the $20 billion per mile average thus far. The original contract was only 25 percent of that amount, $141.8 million. The company already got over $1 billion is less than a year for 37 miles–$27 million per mile.  

Last year, DDT wanted to buy Greenland; now he’s opening a consulate there, supposedly to block growing Russian and Chinese interests in the Arctic. Maybe an end-run to still purchase the Danish territory?

DDT plans to keep people from getting disaster money.  Last Monday, the IRS gave recipients of Social Security and Railroad Retirement benefits not filing a 2018 or 2019 tax return 48 hours to file for $500 COVID-19 “stimulus” payments for dependent children. Anyone who doesn’t meet that deadline has to wait until next year for payment.

About half the tweets about the virus are from bots feeding gullible people over 100 fake conspiracies like 5G towers cause COVID-19, the U.S. developed the virus as a bioweapon, and U.S. politicians issued “mandatory” lockdowns. Three-fourths of them concern false and often deadly cures such as drinking Corona beer and bleach. DDT re-tweeted a video from his golfing buddy John Daly that alcohol cures COVID-19.

Ignoring the danger of illness or death for his audience, a Louisiana pastor bused in people for Sunday services because they were too poor to have online services to watch his ministrations. Now he wants their $1,200 disaster relief checks, supposedly for non-profit and faith-based ministries so that they don’t have to apply for the paycheck protection program.

A week ago when networks showed a two-hour fundraiser for the World Health Organization, Ivanka Trump tweeted a suggestion for what to do instead of watching the variety show:

“Looking for a Saturday night activity? Try making shadow puppets from Henry Bursill’s recently unearthed 1860’s book of engraving…”

Ivanka received a variety of “interesting” responses, needless to say some of them rather graphic. In one of the more printable responses, Jodie Moss picked up on the “puppet” theme. 

NCAA whined about the vast sums that it lost from the cancelation of March Madness and paid out only $225 million to conferences and schools this year instead of the usual $600 million after insurance paid NCAA only $270 million. Its “financial problems” came in 2015 from university presidents on the board of governors who spent over 80 percent of its $500 million that had been set aside for a contingency such as the pandemic.

The Dow Jones went down less than 500 points last week, but crude oil hit a negative zone for the first time in history. After a new low, the futures trading price went to a minus $37.63

DDT and other conservatives hate the UN, which includes the World Health Organization, but Secretary of State is begging the UN to renew the international arms embargo expiring on October 18, 2020. Without a renewal, supply, sale, and transfer of military weapons, vehicles, and aircraft will no longer require UN approval, leaving countries such as Russia and China free to sell these items to anyone. But according to DDT, the U.S. doesn’t need the UN.

The object of DDT’s war as a “wartime president” is the First Amendment. DDT, who has released thousands of lying ads, is suing small media outlets across the United States because of a composite ad of his statements. The goal is to bankrupt them although the media are precluded by the Supreme Court interpretation of the First Amendment. Like other public officials, he cannot recover damages unless he proves the statements are made with “actual malice”—that they are made with the knowledge that they are false or with “reckless disregard” of whether they are true or false. Like DDT’s ads are.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper, responsible for the safety of over 2 million people in the military, learned something about COVID-19 a week ago: normal, healthy appearing people who show no symptoms of the disease can still infect others. That information was made public in the U.S. at least three months ago.

One of DDT’s arguments against Joe Biden is that electing him president means that “China will own the United States.” China already owns part of DDT himself. A refinanced loan in 2012 for DDT’s 43-story Manhattan skyscraper, the Avenue of the Americas near Trump Tower, put DDT in hock to the state-owned Bank of China for $211 million. The loan is due in 2022.  

DDT is back to buddying up with Vladimir Putin as the two of them block a UN global ceasefire to help the pandemic. DDT wants to keep the right to attack other countries, including Iran. More than 50 governments back the UN initiative. DDT has finally dropped his demand that the resolution call COVID-19 the “Wuhan Virus” after telephone calls with China’s president Xi Jinping.

College students who haven’t graduated have an excellent possibility of filling DDT’s influential positions. Recent hires still working on their degrees will do outreach and build relationships with agencies and outside organizations, director of operations for the personnel office, White House liaison with the Department of Commerce, and assistant to the deputy director of the personnel office. The 29-year-old personnel picker must like people who are younger than he is.

Michael Caputo, new HHS spokesman and associate of Roger Stone, is no spring chicken, but he couldn’t hide his ignorant, bigoted tweets with racist and derogatory comments about Chinese people, claims that Democrats wanted COVID-19 to kill millions of people, and accusations that the media intentionally created panic to hurt DDT. Appointed this month, he erased over 1,300 tweeted insults, profanity, and conspiracy theories, but they are still available at Internet Archive’s “The Wayback Machine.” A few of them are here.

Bad enough that evangelicals have James Bakker selling fake treatments for COVID-19 and DDT touts a drug that can kill people. Now Rep. Louie Gohmert, elected by Texas Republicans, promotes a nonexistent “mist” that kills the virus. He said:

“It is being used in Germany as a mist. Health care workers go through a misting tent going into the hospital and it kills the coronavirus completely dead not only right then, but any time in the next 14 days that the virus touches anything that’s been sprayed it is killed.”

Dr. Jörn Wegner, the head of the German Hospital Association, said nothing about Gohmert’s claim is true. Thomas Ruttkowski, the spokesman for the German Society of Hospital Hygiene, laughed at Gohmert, who claimed that an Arizona plant is manufacturing the powder that should be mixed with water to make the mist. Gohmert also likes DDT’s lethal magical drug for a cure. The U.S. representative is known for wacko claims such as the caribou enjoying the warmth of the Alaska oil pipeline for their “dates.” Even Alaska’s conservative Rep. Don Young chortled when he heard Gohmert’s defense of the pipeline.

Mark Meadows, now DDT’s chief of staff and the fourth in less than one presidential term, may have bitten off more than he can chew, with his job to cater to DDT’s moods. Known for being emotional, he has cried in two different meetings with White House staff, and he is trying to reorganize the staff. Meadows angered Stephanie Grisham’s supporters when he replaced her and may cause more problems if he carries through with plans to put speech-writing, composed of only bigoted Stephan Miller, under the communications department. Jared Kushner upset Meadows by providing names of corporate executives as advisers of re-opening the country who hadn’t been asked and some who didn’t agree to be part of the project. People may be making bets on how long Meadows stays. In the meantime, his departure from the House for his new job leaves his North Carolina district without anyone to vote for the people’s interests until the general election.

Today is the second day in a row that DDT had no press briefing (aka campaign rally), and the United States had over 27,000 more confirmed cases, even without much testing, and another 1,250 deaths. Totals are 987,322 cases and 55,415 deaths. Total number of tests in the U.S. is 5,470,555—16.5 tests per 1,000 people.

September 11, 2016

Sad Hypocrisy of 9/11, Evangelical Christians

On the 15th anniversary of 9/11, Christine Todd Whitman, George W. Bush’s head of the EPA at that time, has finally admitted that she was wrong about the air around Ground Zero being just fine following the attacks. She finally said that she was “very sorry” that people are sick and some have died, but she gets upset because people blame her. Over 37,000 people registered with the World Trade Center Health Program (WTCHP) are declared sick, many with respiratory illnesses and/or cancer. Over 1,100 people covered by  WTCHP have died. Whitman had said that air in any areas other than the place of the attack did “not pose a public health hazard.”

GOP legislators also felt the need to comment about the need to “never forget” before they left town for a long weekend with the usual comments about the “heroism of our response” (Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-KY), the need to help people understand the sacrifices made (House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-WI), etc. They also failed to lead Congress in a new 9/11 health and compensation law—never even signed on as sponsors–and instead used it as blackmail to lift an oil export ban. In talking about “sacrifices,” Ryan also commented that he had to drive home to Wisconsin because he couldn’t get a flight.

McConnell managed two anti-Obama care votes this week, but thousands of babies will be born with birth defects, thanks to the GOP failure to push Zika virus funding; residents of Flint (MI) and probably other cities will continue to be poisoned with lead in its water systems, thanks to any congressional action; the Supreme Court will have only eight justices, thanks to the Senate’s intransigence; etc.

Trump scammed the government for $150,000 in 9/11 money by claiming that he helped people after the attacks. Records, however, claimed “rent loss,” “cleanup,” and “repair” that were not allowable under federal gifts. He said that he let people stay free in his building, but that claim didn’t match the reports. He admitted that his property wasn’t affected by the attacks, and there is no evidence of any Trump from charity. He also lied about having “hundreds of friends” die in the attacks and watching “hundreds of Muslims” cheering when the Twin Towers went down.

The Values Voters Summit, hosted by the Family Research Council, met this weekend, and speakers made the same dire warnings of persecution for Christians. American Family Association radio host and government affairs director Sandy Rios failed to explain why people shouldn’t vote for Clinton other than “we can’t even comprehend what life would be like” if Clinton is president. Rios did claim that those who “name the name of Christ will have trouble finding jobs” and people will have to have the “right” opinions to get into college.

Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) followed up on the persecution threat by saying that he was correct in his prediction that the 2009 Matthew Shepard hate crimes act would persecute Christians. Before its passage he claimed that the law would make the U.S. into Nazi Germany and legalize pedophilia, bestiality, and necrophilia. He had no examples of how the law was “used against Christians” or legalization of sex with children, animals, and dead people. After diagnosing Hillary Clinton as “mentally impaired,” he accused her of planning to “subjugating the U.S. Constitution to Sharia law.” (The purpose of the Values Voters Summit is to “subjugating the U.S. Constitution to Christian law.”

Sen. Tim Scott (R-SC) told the Values audience that he was qualified to legislate on abortion because he owned a small business. When an employee tells him that she is pregnant, Scott said, then he takes her to a Christian anti-abortion clinic. Being “in the private sector” make him realize the “importance” of anti-abortion.

Actor Jon Voight gave Trump an outstanding introduction, comparing the GOP presidential candidate to Saint Mother Teresa and Nobel laureate/theologian Albert Schweitzer. The presidential candidate who came in fifth at last year’s Values Voter Summit straw poll showed himself to be the typical reality-show star as he spoke to an audience that chanted “Lock her up!” Trump followed that with a New Testament verse: “No one has ever seen God, but if we love one another, God lives in us and His love is made complete in us.”

Trump ridiculed the IRS regulation preventing churches from supporting or opposing candidates to maintain their tax-exempt status but ignored the fact that the law has been effect since 1954 during GOP President Eisenhower’s first term. Trump continued to lie when he declared that “pastors and ministers” cannot “talk about politics” and said that “all religious leaders should be able to freely express their thoughts and feelings on religious matters.” Religious leaders do that weekly if not daily, as proved by the religious leaders who speak at Trump’s rallies and other events.

Same-gender marriage appears to have disappeared from the evangelical radar if former Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) is any example. At the Summit, the politician who fought bitterly against marriage equality said, “It’s not an issue. In fact, it’s boring.” It appears that the Summit is also “not an issue” and “boring”: The internet has almost nothing about this year’s meeting.

Before cable television was overwhelmed today with Hillary Clinton’s illness, manifested at the 9/11 commemoration this morning, it concentrated on Clinton’s statement that half of Trump’s supporters are in a “basket of deplorable.” She did later apologize for having said this, and many people are saying that she was telling the truth because of a constituency for a racist, homophobic, misogynist, xenophobic candidate.  (I’ll also add arrogant, narcissistic, and bullying, and you may have a few more adjectives.)

Trump’s running mate, Mike Pence, defended the GOP candidate at the Summit by saying that they are “hard-working” and “deserve your respect.” Hard-working they may be, but respect is an interesting term for Pence to use when he shows no respect for many of the people in Indiana after he was elected governor when he promoted laws against women’s reproductive rights, LGBT rights, immigrants, raped prisoners, poor people, religious diversity, and people at risk of HIV/AIDS. Pence’s “religious freedom” law in Indiana also permits parents to beat their children with a number of items, including coat hangers and cords. That’s a lot of missing “respect.”

These are a few of the people who Pence wants Clinton to respect:

In Alabama, a Christian pastor told an audience at a McKenzie High School football game that they should be lined up and executed by the military if they don’t stand for the national anthem. The crowd cheered and praised the pastor on Facebook.

In Ohio, a 31-year-old youth pastor sexually abused a teenage member of his church. Church leaders who discovered the abuse told the family not to return to their church until the daughter apologized to the pastor’s wife for being sexually abused.

More examples of evangelical positions:

  • Linking LGBT rights to ISIS.
  • Calling gay rights activists “intolerant,” “hateful,” “vile,” “spiteful” and “pawns” of Satan.
  • Defending Uganda’s “kill-the-gays” bill as a “laudable” effort “to uphold moral conduct.”
  • Accusing President Obama of using the health care reform law for a private army of loyal Brownshirts.
  • Claiming that the president promoted the infiltration of the Muslim Brotherhood into the U.S. government.
  • Alleging that the health care act will deprive the elderly of life-saving treatments.
  • Insisting that bisexuality means “orgies.”
  • Believing that public school officials are getting “condom profits” from opposing abstinence-only programs.
  • Tying same-gender marriage to failing public schools.
  • Blaming President Obama for “orchestrating” protests in Ferguson (MO) to exacerbate racial tensions.
  • Suggesting that the president is having a secret gay affair.
  • Comparing people who want Confederate symbols removed from government property to ISIS terrorists.
  • Stating that blacks abused during the Jim Crow era are “singing and happy.”
  • Calling an Islamic community center a “den of iniquity.”
  • Asserting that the U.S. government is working with drug gangs and Islamic militant to create turmoil and disorder.
  • Blaming the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal on the inclusion of women in the military.
  • Fearing that the government will use the military to persecute LGBT rights opponents and murder Christians.
  • Maintaining that the president will fake an assassination attempt or “intentionally” spark an Israeli-Irnaian war to “take control of the radio, TV, and internet” and “start usurping all kinds of power.”
  • Insisting that “78 to 81” House Democrats “are members of the Communist Party” and that President Obama uses Soviet messaging.
  • Positing that the president is waging “biological warfare” against Americans through enterovirus D68 or the Ebola virus.
  • Comparing Social Security to slavery.
  • Blaming football injuries on the separation of church and state.
  • Heralding Donald Trump as God’s choice to win the election.
  • And much more!

Pence wants people to respect all the people who want to kill people for thinking for themselves, who have diverse beliefs and religions, rape with impunity, and struggle to take away the rights of everyone except evangelical Christians.

April 1, 2013

Follow the GOP Fools

Filed under: Uncategorized — trp2011 @ 7:16 PM
Tags: , , , , ,

On April Fools Day, nowhere can a group of fools be more easily found than among GOP legislators. Last week’s fool was Rep. Don Young (R-AK) when he referred to the “wetbacks” that picked tomatoes on his father’s Texas ranch—about 70 years ago. Young did apologize—twice because he forgot to use the word “sorry” the first time—but that doesn’t erase this GOP attitude toward the voters that they are working so hard to woo.

An even more bizarre statement from Young was his recommendation to drink alone as a method of cutting back on domestic violence. Young was speaking at a rally against DV at the Alaska state capitol:

“You look at the relationship between violence against the loved ones you love, [it] is usually related to either one of those. And I’m going to suggest for those that may be drinking together — stop it! If you want to drink by yourself, you may do it. But when you drink together, the possibility of harm becomes greater every day.”

Young is not alone, however, in his foolishness. In his speech to the U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) told Latinos what he found valuable about them—their “romance”:

“Some say to generalize about any ethnic group is to be a racist.  There is a hilarious Seinfeld episode where Jerry admits that he loves Asian women but he frets and worries, ‘Is it racist to like a certain race?’ So it is with trepidation that I express my admiration for the romance of the Latin culture.  I am a fan of Gabriel Garcia Marquez.”

 Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) offended most minority groups during an interview about immigration reform. In his insistence on border security, he said, “As a matter a fact a guy told me last night, he said we’ve got people coming across our place speaking Chinese, French and basically all of the languages in the world, coming through and across our southern border.” The French?! Again?! Some “guy” should tell Cornyn that border crossings are at a 40-year low: the GOP has so trashed the U.S. that people don’t want to come here anymore.

Rep. Bob Goodlatte (R-VA) approaches the immigration problem with expanding “a guest-worker program for immigrant-labor-dependent U.S. agriculture” to ensure that farms have a steady stream of foreign labor to fulfill the “dirtiest jobs.” He opposes any legal ways for undocumented immigrants to earn a path to citizenship; his sole concern is that agriculture workers who obtain citizenship will find different jobs because they won’t want to work on the farms anymore.

Rep. Steve King (R-IA), a senatorial hopeful, decided to both pick on the president’s daughter while revealing their vacation plans. A caller to King started the discussion: “When I see the First Lady and the beautiful girls going off to the Bahamas waving goodbye to us, it’s really hard to stomach.” King agreed with his caller: “We’ve got the president doing these things. He sent the daughters to spring break in Mexico a year ago. That was at our expense, too. And now to the Bahamas at one of the most expensive places there. That is the wrong image to be coming out of the White House.”

Like many other GOP politicians, King passed along his misinformation about marriage equality. In addition to his belief that the only purpose of marriage is procreation—a statement well debunked by Justice Elena Kagan—King claimed that “the Constitution never contemplated marriage being anything other than between a man and a woman.” The representative who wants to be senator doesn’t even know that “marriage” is not referenced in the U.S. Constitution.

Rep. K. Michael “Mike” Conaway (R-TX) is a typical GOP conservatives who still maintain that tax cuts for the wealthy will create more jobs. Publicly pushing to stop all that “wasteful government spending,” however, he privately lobbies the National Park Service to make the childhood home of former President George W. Bush into a National Park.

Rep. Louie Gohmert (T-TX) told the U.S. Park Police that he would not pay a parking ticket near the Lincoln Memorial because he is on a committee that oversees the agency. His citation was for parking in a place reserved for National Park Service vehicles. A police report described Gohmert as “rude and irate.” What a surprise!

Gohmert has an interesting history of rants.  Before the repeal to “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was passed, he called the bill “perverse…social experimentation” with soldiers being “held hostage by a sociological attack.” As for the Matthew Shepard hate crimes bill, he claimed that it would lead to legalization of necrophilia, pedophilia, and bestiality. And of course, Hitler came into Gohmert’s speech when he claimed that removing “moral teaching in America” would make the United States similar to Germany in the “1920′s and 1930′s” when a “little guy with a mustache” took over. All in one short speech!

Texas keeps popping up in the world of fools. Rep. Steve Stockman (R-TX) really likes drilling for oil: “The best thing about the Earth is if you poke holes in it oil and gas come out.”

Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) supported his gay son, but Rep. Matt Salmon (R-AZ) took the opposite stance. “I don’t support the gay marriage [sic],” Salmon said. “My son is by far one of the most important people in my life….”  The son’s importance fell short of Salmon’s allowing his son’s partner into his home. “Everybody’s pretty much told me, ‘You’re fine, we love you, but your partner’s not welcome because we don’t want gay around us,'” the younger Salmon said in 2010.

The fools are readily available among state legislators too, politicians who have gone far beyond mandating teaching creationism in schools and making all women’s reproductive rights illegal:

Wisconsin: Since Gov. Scott Walker got rid of unions, cut public pay, and reduced taxes for the wealthy to create jobs, the state went from 11th in job creation to 44th. Walker has a reason: the workers themselves and liberal voters.

Indiana: Thanks to support from the NRA, this state is the first to allow anybody to shoot at any “public servant”—including the police—for “unlawful intrusion.” I wonder how police recruitment is doing in Indiana these days.

Washington: State lawmakers introduced a bill to outlaw the paper dollar, because “only gold and silver may be recognized as government legal tender.” I guess I can’t visit there any more if the bill passes.

Kansas: The senate approved a bill to quarantine people with AIDS or HIV. When it moved toward the house in that state, some of the legislators backed off from something that draconian but did repeal the 25-year-old law preventing quarantine for people with AIDS or the virus that causes. Meanwhile, a bill requiring doctors to lie to their patients is still in the mill. If it passes, doctors will be required to tell pregnant women that abortions cause breast cancer.

Montana: “Corporations are people, my friend,” said last year’s GOP presidential candidate, Mitt Romney, and Rep. Steve Lavin wants these people (aka corporations) to have the vote. He has proposed a state bill that would allow corporations the right to vote in municipal elections. It has been tabled, but the idea is still very peculiar.

Idaho: State Sen. John Goedde of Idaho wants to require all students to read Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged before they graduate because “it made my son a Republican.” He said that he hadn’t read the book for 30 years but thought it gave a “sense of personal responsibility.” Raj Patel wrote:

“There are two novels that can transform a bookish 14-year-old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish daydream that can lead to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood in which large chunks of the day are spent inventing ways to make real life more like a fantasy novel. The other is a book about orcs.”

Does Goedde know that Rand was an illegal immigrant?

Happy day of fools! And happy 40th birthday to Rachel Maddow!

 

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