Necessary Evil My Ass

In my time, we were just past the stage of banging rocks together. Your society may soon advance to that level.

Republican Senator Tom Cotton from Arkansas has defended slavery as a necessary evil for America.

You people say the most amazing, incredible, and stupid things.

Buying and selling human beings was necessary for the development of your country? After the Renaissance? After the Great Enlightenment?

You should be deeply ashamed.

Your country has a lot of “developing” to do to before it can be considered civilized, much less developed..

Of course, the (choke, choke) distinguished (gag) gentleman from Arkansas might also point out the benefits of other fine American practices, such as ducking people to determine if they were witches (if they drowned, they were innocent). Then he could explain how tarring and feathering is as American apple pie along with vigilante justice and lynching.

I would like to see Mr. Cotton experience life in the reality he aspires to, but experience it as an enslaved African

Confederate Coincidence

As the debate continues about Confederate monuments, I’d like for you to consider a few issues:

  1. After the Civil War, Reconstruction, which was despised by the South, ended about 1877. This ushered in the Jim Crow era, which included various laws and practices to effectively disenfranchise and disadvantage the freed slaves.
  2. Many, if not most monuments to the Confederate soldiers were erected after 1890 and peaked about 1909, when segregation was the norm, especially in the South.
  3. It is not coincidence that more than a few of the monuments to confederate soldiers were located on sites that were former slave markets or whipping posts where slaves were flogged in public. You don’t have to be Sigmund Freud to figure out the not-so-hidden message.

I keep hearing apologia that the Confederate soldiers honored by these monuments were not traitors. Merriam Webster provides the definitions below. Many of those depicted in statues and other monuments attended or graduated from the US Military Academy at West Point, where they had taken an oath to protect and defend the Constitution of the United States. These include Robert E. Lee, Braxton Bragg, A.P. Hill, George Pickett, and John Bell Hood. For a more inclusive list, click here. They all took up arms and waged war against the country to which they had sworn an oath.

Definition of traitor

1 : one who betrays another’s trust or is false to an obligation or duty 2 : one who commits treason

Definition of treason

1 : the offense of attempting by overt acts to overthrow the government of the state to which the offender owes allegiance or to kill or personally injure the sovereign or the sovereign’s family 2 : the betrayal of a trust

Presidential Militias

The use of federal troops independent of state and local authorities in Portland, Oregon is disturbing. Word is that Chicago, Illinois will be next. After that, they may be coming to a neighborhood near you.

It’s bad enough that your president has manged to get para-military forces at his command. It’s worse that Americans in the employ of the federal government who have sworn an oath to the US Constitution have changed their allegiance to Trump and are complicit, if not worse.

I say that you should go all the way or not at all. If you don’t have the common sense to stop, then make Heinrich Himmler and Reinhard Heydrich your role models.

If you don’t know about Himmler and Heydrich, perhaps you should read up on them. You could learn a lot–even though, in the long run, things did not work out well for them.

History may not repeat itself, but it rhymes.

You Goya Ivanka!

Ivanka Trump backs Goya on Twitter after liberals call for ...

Ivanka Trump recently told unemployed Americans to “find something new.” This simplistic response to a complex problem was met with astonishment and compared to Marie Antoinette’s alleged advice to “Let them eat cake.” The biggest difference is that Antoinette probably did NOT make the cake comment. Ivanka, on the other hand, actually did tell Americans to “find something new.”

Anxious to top her previous comment, Ivanka–the Special Assistant to the President for Boneheaded Advice–raised the ante. Goya’s president had angered many of its customers by calling Donald Trump “a blessing,” so Ivanka started promoting Goya. Does anyone believe that Ivanka has ever–as in not even once in her life–opened a can of Goya beans?

Since all Trumps are shielded from laws, regulations, and anything else they find inconvenient, Ivanka’s Goya promotion is a clear federal ethics violation is immaterial. After all, White House plastic surgery poster girl Kellyann Conway, violated the same ethics rules when she shilled Ivanka’s clothing brand. When the administration was confronted with Kellyann’s behavior, the only response was silence, interrupted only by the sound of crickets chirping.

The president is rumored to have told his staff that it’s no big deal and both issues could easily be corrected with the stroke of a SHARPIE.

P.S. Given Donald Trumps bromance with Russian leader-for-life Vladimir Putin, does anyone else find it unsettling that “Ivanka” is the feminine version of “Ivan,” one of, if not the most, popular first name in Russia?

Roger Stone

Oh! What a tangled web we weave,
when first we practice to deceive.

If it’s true that people are known by the company they keep, what does that say about your president?

Commuting Roger Stone’s sentence was a most interesting move. Please notice that Trump did not pardon him, but merely commuted his sentence. Why?

If Stone had been pardoned, then he would no longer be at risk of being retried for his crimes. However, by having his sentence commuted, he will have to invoke the fifth amendment to protect himself–and coincidentally others–from incrimination.

In other words, Stone’s silence has been bought and paid for.

Putin would be proud of his protege.

Tucker Carlson

I’ve been enjoying the interaction between Tucker Carlson and Senator Tammy Duckworth. Let’s look at the bona fides of these two . . . .

Tucker Carlson
– Grew up in a home overlooking the La Jolla Beach and Tennis Club
– Has a BA in history
– Tried to join the CIA, but was rejected
– Father had been head of the Voice of America and the Corporation for Public Brodcasting
– Has worked as a newspaper reporter in Arkansas and has been published in a number of magazines
– Is a conservative pundit on Fox News
– Accuses Senator Tammy Duckworth of being un-American

Tammy Duckworth
– Has a BA in Political Science, an MA in International Affairs, and a PhD in Human Services; was pursuing a second PhD in Political Science, but was mobilized with the US Army before she could complete it
– Joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps in graduate school
– Commissioned as an officer in the US Army Reserve, became a helicopter pilot and was deployed to Iraq where she lost both legs in combat to a rocket propelled grenade
– Lobbied to remain in service, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel from the Army National Guard
– Has served in numerous public service positions including as a member of the United States House of Representatives and the United States Senate

Before either of them says a single word, who would you choose to listen to?



COVID-19 Mismath

“Dammit Jim, I’m a philosopher, not a mathematician!”*

Your political leaders are saying that 99 percent of coronavirus cases are harmless.

I don’t have a whiteboard, a chalkboard, much less a working copy of Microsoft Excel in my sewer-home. However, I do have a stick and there’s a dirt road I can reach by leaning out of my sewer, so I did some ciphering (as we used to call math).

Over the last few months, the number of new deaths to new cases has been 2.8 percent. For any politicians reading this, that means that for every 1000 new cases, 28 will die. No big deal, except that in the United States, you have had 3,022,742 cases. Politicians, either have one of your staff do the math for you, or else, just ignore it.

As a philosopher, that tells me:
1. People who do not die from the disease are, according to your political leaders, not harmed–even if their lungs don’t work properly for the rest of their (shortened) life.
2. A majority of those who die from the disease–nearly two out of three–are, according to your political leaders, not harmed either. This does not align with Betelgeuse, who said “Besides, this dead thing—-it’s creepy.”

I could cipher and write more, but I’d rather crawl back into my sewer.

Good luck. You’re going to need it.

* Apologies to Star Trek (The Original Series)

Trump Campaign-What a Show!

Personally, I’m excited about Donald Trump’s re-election campaign. It looks to be more entertaining political intrigue than watching the Borgias or the Medicis during their prime. Why?

Because the campaign is being run by this guy.

Jared Kushner registered to vote as a female

Jared Kuschner, who’s qualifications include marrying the Trump daughter for which Trump seems to have an unnatural affection. That’s it. Nothing else to add to his bona fides. However, his experience speaks for itself.

Jared was in charge of solving the opioid crisis, which wasn’t exactly solved. In 2019 there were 46,802 deaths due to opioids. Ooops!

Jared single-handedly managed the Middle East peace process without absolutely any tangible results.

He was responsible for improving relations with China. Not exactly a home run, but in fairness, they did share COVID-19 with the rest of the world.

Speaking of which, there was Jared’s wonderful handling of the response to the pandemic, which had a record 51,097 new cases yesterday. However, he set us all straight when he explained that the national stockpile of emergency supplies is “our” meaning “his” stockpile and not for use by the states, much less the people of the United States of America.

I can’t wait to see the campaign unfold. This has the potential to challenge the Marx Brothers for absolute knee-slapping comedy.

A Republic If You Can Keep It

After the Constitutional Convention in 1787, Mrs. Powel of Philadelphia asked Benjamin Franklin, “Well, Doctor, what have we got, a republic or a monarchy?” With no hesitation whatsoever, Franklin responded, “A republic, if you can keep it.”

A democratic republic is sometimes described as an experiment. It runs counter to humanity’s inability to restrain ambitious and unscrupulous people from accumulating power and wealth. Greed is powerful–certainly more attractive than putting the good of society ahead of one’s own best interest.

Your country is at the point at which it needs to decide whether it wants to keep a republic.

May I offer this advice. Power tends to dissipate with death. Even hereditary monarchies are prone to being disrupted, whether by conquest, arranged marriages, or revolution. Wealth is often dissipated after only a few generations. On the other hand, doing something for the betterment of others lives on.

Gaffe

I have seen many leaders over the millennia–David, Solomon, Alexander, all the Caesars, far too many Popes and anti-Popes, kings, dictators, Czars, and all the others. Most of them, not occasionally, but on a regular basis, said things that weren’t brilliant. Many times it was to offset their feelings of insecurity–especially in the masculinity areas.

Most of those stupid–yes stupid–statements were swept under the rug and are long lost to history.

In any case, you people love to see powerful people get caught by their own words, even if they’re just acting human.

Your presumptive (I love that word) presidential candidate Joe Biden’s every syllable is parsed and people gleefully jump on any awkward statement. That’s part and parcel of being a politician.
Biden touched his face despite ongoing warnings not to do that during the coronavirus pandemic.
– “If you have a problem figuring out whether you’re for me or Trump, then you ain’t black.”

However, in comparison, his rival, Donald Trump, gets a pass for saying such things as :
“Grab them by the pussy.”
“There’s nothing in the world like first-rate pussy”
“Is it wrong to be more sexually attracted to your own daughter than your wife?”

I’ve seen such things before and know where this will probably end. I don’t recommend it. You will not like it.