Saturday, April 29, 2017
Friday, April 28, 2017
And our tiny-thumbed orange brat finds benefit in fear-mongering and exaggerating the North Korean nuclear threat. Yes, Lil Kim has nuclear weapon capability. Has had for some time. Their missile systems are a bit shaky, but yeah, they could probably lob a nuke at some place nearby. Again, nothing new about that. What's new is Trump's determination to be a military blowhard. It distracts from other issues, plays well to his base and seems to be good for his poll numbers. Clearly, he intends to sabre-rattle his way into better approval numbers.
Today, Trump called for nuclear disarmament by Kim and said that without it, there's a chance the U.S. could have "a major, major conflict with North Korea. Absolutely."
He sent the Secretary of State, Rex the Wonder Diplomat, to the U.N. with the same message. Tillerson called for more and more economic sanctions against North Korea. He asked China to stop sending them coal, and said "all options remain on the table, including military action."
Is North Korea really worth this sort of bellicose rhetoric? Is it wise for America to start making pointed threats like these? I think not. This whole issue is Trumped-up, and Donnie Destructo is playing a very dangerous game.
I heard some pundit this morning put it this way:
Let's say you told your child to clean up the toys in his room and he didn't do it. So you told him, "If you don't pick up all these toys right now, I will pick them up and throw them all in the trash! No more toys for you!" That's a big-ass threat with dire consequences, but what if he still didn't do it? Would you really follow through and throw out all his toys? And what message would it send if you didn't follow through? That your threats are hollow and meaningless, just a bunch of belligerent hot air? You've painted yourself into a corner, genius!
I prefer the "strategic patience" of previous administrations from both parties.
Thursday, April 27, 2017
I have fatigue -- Trump fatigue, that is. His first Hideous Hundred Days have just about worn me out. Constant lies, bombast, conflicts of interest, nepotism, shiny-object distractions, and outright ignorance mixed with blatant hucksterism have yielded lots of news coverage but very little in the way of accomplishments. (Which suits me, since everything he wants to accomplish is abhorrent!)
Some of the latest soul-sucking time-wasters from the Blunt Orange Object and his Insane Clown Posse:
Paying less tax might be nice, but what do we give up in the less-revenue bargain? It's just a plain old tax cut with little to offset it. It would mainly benefit the wealthy and it would increase the deficit, which is what Republicans always do. The tax plan is a no-go.
Blame Puerto Rico! (And Obamacare.) BS! Last night, apropos of nothing, Adolph Twitler decided to fire off an angry nonsensical tweet which somehow accused an unincorporated U.S. territory, a popular health insurance law, and the Democratic party of being in league to waste our tax dollars:
Yo, Yam Face! You are wasting our tax dollars -- bigly! -- with your every-weekend golf trips to Mar-A-Lago, and by maintaining your Slovenian super-wife in her gilded cage in Manhattan. Sad!
The first 100 days have been exhausting -- feels like 100 years.
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
Sent by a faithful reader, and promptly swiped by me. Thanks, faithful reader!
New slogans for United Airlines...
We have First Class, Business Class, and No Class.
Our prices can’t be beaten...but our passengers can be.
We put the hospital in hospitality.
We beat our passengers, not the competition.
We have an offer you can’t refuse. No, really.
Board as a doctor, leave as a patient.
Not enough seating? Prepare for a beating.
And you thought legroom was an issue.
If our staff need a seat, we’ll drag you out by your feet.
We treat you like we treat your luggage.
Fight or flight.
You may have patients, but we don’t have patience.
We have red-eye and black-eye flights available.
Now serving free punch.
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
A friend of ours has three boys, all middle school age or younger. All three are baseball maniacs, playing on multiple teams. Dad is a coach, and Mom drives the minivan and provides moral support from her seat in the stands.
With that, our friend piped up and said, "I'm a Democrat," at which point the little brat starts pelting her with Goldfish. She said she immediately resolved to remain calm and not react at all. So she just sat there and took it, waiting for the kid's oblivious father to take some notice, which he finally did, suggesting that Dear Junior might want to "stop that." And the kid stopped.
Our friend's restraint was admirable. I know I could not have been as so stoic. I'd have yelled at the kid or lashed out or done something effective but embarassing and regrettable. I'd have done the same if my kid were the one being a little jerk.
We all know that a misbehaving child has no sense of time or place. But how does a child grow up learning it's OK to throw snack food at complete strangers who do not share his parents' political persusasion? He picked up his vocal hatred of Democrats somewhere.
Just another symptom of our national high-speed dumbing-down; an example of what now passes for a well-behaved family here in Trumplandia.
And here are some of the gems excerpted from his steady stream of lying bullshit:
Said he's "mostly there" on his "100-day action plan." Uh, mostly not. Not even close.
"Never heard of WikiLeaks, never heard of it." C'mon, Donald! While campaigning, you "loved" WikiLeaks.
Said the Electoral College is "very difficult for a Republican to win" because it's "so skewed" toward Democrats. No, it's not.
Admitted he didn't understand NATO, and claimed that "back when they did NATO, there was no such thing as terrrorism." NATO is a political and military alliance formed in 1949 for the mutual defense of its member nations. It is not an anti-terrorism agency. And BTW Donnie, terrorism has been around forever.
Describing a meeting with Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md): "Well he said, you'll be the greatest president in the history of, but you know what, I'll take that also, but that you could be. But he said, will be the greatest president but I would also accept the other." Huh? And WTF?? I need Sarah Palin to translate that mess.
Claimed his pipe-dream Mexican wall is "not going to be that expensive." The DHS projects it'll cost over $20 billion. It should be free, since Mexico was going to pay for it.
Cleared up the whole flexible vs. exact thing, then offered his interviewer a soft drink: "You have to have a certain flexibility, Number One. Number Two, from the time I took office till now, you know, it's a very exact thing. It's not like generalities. Do you want a Coke or anything?" LOL!
By way of contrast, on Monday President Obama spoke at his first public event since leaving the White House. He led a discussion at the University of Chicago on the need for young people to engage and participate politically. As usual, my Cousin Barry was cool, calm and well-spoken.
The New Yorker's Andy Borowitz put it this way:
Obama's Barage of Complete Sentences Seen As Brutal Attack on Trump
In an appearance at the University of Chicago on Monday, former President Barack Obama unloaded a relentless barrage of complete sentences in what was widely seen as a brutal attack on his successor, Donald Trump.
Appearing at his first public event since leaving office, Obama fired off a punishing fusilade of grammatically correct sentences, the likes of which the American people have not heard from the White House since he departed.
"He totally restricted his speech to complete sentences," Tracy Klugian, a student at the event, said. "It was the most vicious takedown of Trump I'd ever seen."
"About five or six sentences in, I noticed that all of his sentences had both nouns and verbs in them," Carol Foyler, another student, said. "I couldn't believe he was going after Trump like that."
Obama's blistering deployment of complete sentences clearly got under the skin of their intended target, who, moments after the event, responded with an angry tweet: "Obama bad (or sick) guy. Failing. Sad!"
Thursday, April 20, 2017
Stiffly reciting the prepared remarks like an uncomfortable school boy, Big Rex said the era of "strategic patience" with Iran is over.
Oh, great. A strategy of strategic impatience? Brilliant!
Trump has no coherent policy, foreign or otherwise, but some people have said nice things about his impetuous bad-boy act -- bombing Syria and Afghanistan, threatening North Korea and Iran, etc. Having a narcissistic personality disorder, he craves praise and turns even the faintest amount of it into an epic personal triumph for himself.
It's sad (SAD!) that Trump's unfocused knee-jerk military reactions now pass for "policy" and distract us from his myriad shortcomings, both foreign and domestic.
Stop feeding the beast!
Just like there is no safe cigarette, there is no safe frack well. But some things never change. For a price, these PR weasels will try to sell us poison.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017
Bill O'Reilly has been fired from Fox News for being a serial sexual abuser and a lying sack of shit. Couldn't have happened to a more deserving slimeball.
Not just at Fox News but every place he's ever been, O'Rapey has been the very definition of Gigantic Asshole. The wonder is not that he finally got canned, but that it took this long.
Now let's do the same for the Gigantic Asshole in the White House.
As I'm sure you've heard, the state of Arkansas has gone officially stark raving mad. They intended to execute 8 death row inmates in a two-week span before the end of this month. This would have been a new American capital punishment record for both speed and quantity.
Courts have granted stays of execution for three of the eight men. Makers of the drugs to be administered are objecting because their drugs were never intended for this use. And it's unclear if Arkansas obtained its supply of these drugs legitimately.
Nevertheless, Arkansas intends to go forward and start killing the five men without stays, beginning tomorrow night. Madness!
Regular readers know Buster is opposed to the death penalty. Here's a snippet of an old post from 2014, just after Ohio's last execution:
Today we Buckeyes showed we're not only still dedicated to official government-sanctioned killing, we're willing to get creative about it. Ignoring all objections and protests, we took a Death Row prisoner and field-tested our own brand-new chemical concoction on him. It was a blend of massive doses of a sedative and a painkiller. (Texas Gov. Rick Perry suggested we toss in some Drain-O and some Clorox for good measure.) Whatever it was, the shit killed him, but it took 15 minutes and he was convulsing, twitching and gasping for the last 10 minutes. And yes, he was a murderer.
The funny thing about any form of criminal punishment, from probation to a jail sentence to execution, is that it never eliminates similar future crimes. Society continues to insist on its pound of flesh -- a price must be paid -- but the members of that society seem to keep doing the same stupid criminal shit again and again, no matter what we do to them. I won't pretend to have any answers.
I'm opposed to the death penalty and I know I'm in the minority. Execution changes nothing, but if our social compact requires that we avenge a death with another death, then what the State of Ohio did today is not the way. We've done away with the gallows, the gas chamber and the electric chair for a reason. Trial-and-error Popular Mechanics-style lethal injections are not the answer.
So how about this? If some bad people simply must be executed, let's bring back the guillotine. The desired death is certain, painless and instantaneous, but it's a little messy. The head bounces on the floor, blood spurts all over, but that sumbitch is dead for sure. The guillotine, in all its breath-taking, gory finality might also make some of the capital punishment cheerleaders get up close and personal with their own motives, and maybe think twice.
He warned Kim Jong Un "not to test our resolve. We can be just as reckless and crazy as you, we have way more bombs and missiles than you, and ours actually work."
Pence drove home his message by aiming his "angry squint face" across the DMZ toward North Korea.
I'm reminded of the classic bit from Monty Python's Holy Grail: "Now go away or I shall taunt you a second time!" Enjoy!
Saturday, April 15, 2017
Yesterday, I received the nice email below from my nephew Chris, who lives in Charlotte with his wife Meg and their two kids. He shared my cancer diagnosis and treatment with Meg's great aunt, Sister Miriam, who I remember fondly from back in 2012.
Here's Chris's email:
I hope you don't mind that I shared your current situation with Meg's great aunt Miriam, the nun from Louisville. You might remember talking to her at our wedding. She is now 93 and continues to amaze us - she recounted to me the conversation the two of you had in the bus on the way to our reception and remarked on your shared interest in history.
She wanted me to assure you of her concern and prayers for your improved health. In fact, your name has been entered into a book at the convent and you now have the entire order of the Sisters of Charity of Nazareth praying for you! (plus a smaller contingent of non-Catholics here in Charlotte). You should feel those healing vibes coming your way shortly. Enjoy!
I'm not a religious person, but as I told him, I'll take it and I'm honored to have an entire order of nuns praying for me!
"So I got that goin' for me, which is nice." -- Carl Spackler, groundskeeper in Caddyshack.
Friday, April 14, 2017
"We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence by the military-industrial complex." -- President Dwight Eisenhower, 1961
"What I do is authorize my military . . . We've given them total authorization, and that's what they're doing." -- Dolt 45, 2017
So, that means "the generals" can do whatever they like, and the guy who says he's "knows more than the generals" has given them carte blanche??
Or maybe it means that Donnie Destructo is giving the orders and, after the surprise bombings in Syria and Afghanistan, is now completely shit-faced drunk on his bomb-dropping and war-making capability??
The Combover Kid vs. Lil Kim in a battle of Terrible Tots! But it isn't funny. Intelligence also reports that China has moved 150,000 of its troops to the North Korean border.
The Trumpocalypse could be upon us.
Tuesday, April 11, 2017
Both sides see it clearly now: Trump is just a feckless empty vessel, a dangerously incurious and unprincipled gameshow host.
Here are two succinct summations of recent events, both of which essentially draw the same conclusion. The first is by Steve Benen, a liberal writer for the Maddow Blog. The next is by David Frum, a neo-con Republican, Atlantic editor and former speechwriter for Dubya:
On health care, it was Paul Ryan who effectively told Trump, “Never mind what your instincts tell you; my plan is the way to go.” On Syria, it was his national security team that did the same thing, effectively telling the president, “Never mind what your instincts tell you; this is an issue 59 Tomahawk cruise missiles can make better.”
It’s a safe bet Trump’s entire presidency will continue to unfold this way. It’s not that he’s determined to deliberately do the opposite of what he promised voters; it’s that he doesn’t seem to take any of those commitments especially seriously. Someone he knows and trusts – Paul Ryan, James Mattis, H.R. McMaster, et al – comes into the Oval Office, presents him with an idea, tells him it’s the smart thing to do, and Trump says, “Sounds good.”
He didn’t necessarily change his mind about his vision; Trump never really made up his mind in the first place.
Monday, April 10, 2017
"If we had applied our current profit-driven mentality to the search for a cure for polio, we wouldn't have successful vaccines today. Instead, we'd have iron lungs in seven designer colors, complete with free Wi-Fi and a variety of iPhone apps."
Her point: In our system today, lifetime treatment is always more profitable than discovering a cure.
|He launched the missiles the next day, 4/6/17.|
To a degree, it has worked. Trump captured the news cycle and his missile gambit received good reviews in some quarters. "Presidential!" some said. Oh, bullshit! Stop praising him for his reckless action. (Praise is like crack to a narcissisct like him.) There was and is no strategy, no long term plan. He just opened his toybox and reactively scratched an itch with 59 Tomahawks. Did it change anything in Syria? No. The Syrian airbase resumed operations promptly. (John Oliver said you'll experience longer delays on any Delta Airlines flight!)
Perhaps now Trump has a new appreciation of Obama's relutance to entangle the U.S. in the Syrian morass. Perhaps he'll reflect on the wise words of Dan Rather:
"War must never be considered a public relations operation. It's not a way for an administration to gain a narrative, it is a step into a dangerous unknown and its full impact is impossible to predict."
Friday, April 7, 2017
Back in 2013, President Obama wanted Congress to authorize a U.S. military response to the Syrian government's gas attack on its own people. From his hideaway in Twitter Tower, Citizen Trump warned against U.S. retaliation over and over again, and insisted that Obama would need Congressional approval. Most Republicans on the hill were opposed, and no approval ever came.
During the campaign, Candidate Trump denounced Hillary Clinton's foreign policy, claiming she wanted "to start a shooting war in Syria in conflict with nuclear-armed Russia. It could lead to World War III."
He campaigned on his "America First" platform and urged us to build closer ties to Vladimir Putin.
A week ago, Trump administration officials declared that "our priority is no longer getting Assad out" (Nikki Haley) and "the status of Assad will be decided by the Syrian people" (Rex Tillerson).
|Captain Kangaroo has more military experience|
So, Hillary Clinton would stupidly start World War III, but President Donnybrook (who "knows more than the generals") will not. Let's fervently hope not.
As someone who despises Syrian refugees, he's about to create a hell of a lot more of 'em.
For all his bloviation in one direction, to do a 180 course change -- with missiles! --is mind-boggling. But Trump is a man without principles -- he lives moment to moment in the 24-7 news cycle, knees jerking and fingers flailing as he reacts to this and that. He's not just unpredictable, he's unstable, unhinged.
Could this be the start of the Trumpocalypse?
Thursday, April 6, 2017
Trump said he would not continue with Obama's "Assad must go" policy. The Syrian dictator could stay in power, no problem. (Essentially the Russian position.) After that pronouncement, Syria promptly launched a deadly chemical attack on its own people. Trump blamed it on Obama! Then he back-pedaled.
To divert attention from the Russian election hacking probe, a month ago Trump came up with the lie that Obama had placed him under surveillance. In support of that lie, he pulled another shiny object out of his ass -- his claim that Obama's National Security Adviser Susan Rice leaked the names of some Trump associates appearing in a foreign intelligence report, and that this constituted a crime. A crime? "Yes, I think." Proof or evidence? "Later, at the right time." What exactly is her crime? He couldn't say, but "it's going to be the biggest story."
Advertisers are bailing out, but Fox News renewed its contract with serial sexual harasser Bill O'Rapey. (Roger Ailes taught him everything he knows.) And to kick off Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Trump said O'Rapey was "a good person. I don't think he did anything wrong." (From one pussy-grabber to another.)
Special Presidential Assistant and daughter-wife Ivanka told an interviewer that she does indeed differ from Daddy Dearest on some issues, and she effectively and privately expresses her opinions to him. But she will not do so publicly, on the record, and so "most people will not actually know about it." (Ooh, that's effective!)
Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Sunday, April 2, 2017
Far more likely reasons that the man who once claimed to be, as a youth, "the best baseball player in New York" will not perform this traditional rite of spring:
- Mr. Pixie Fingers can no longer properly grasp the ball in his tiny little hands.
- When he did it in the past, he looked like he was taking a horrible shit.
- He's afraid of being publicly booed by 40,000 people at Nationals Park.
- He's scared of the numerous Mexican and Latino players on the rosters of both teams.
It is reported that over the years, Fox News has paid $13 million in hush money to five different women to settle sexual harrassment and abuse charges against Bill O'Reilly, the supposed bell cow of their primetime lineup.
How does this asshole keep his job?