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Republicans Commit Suicide En Masse

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, July 23, 2021

“By the time you get to October, these resurgent epidemics [will] have burned through a lot of the people who are susceptible.”

“What’s going on in the country with the virus is matching our most pessimistic scenarios.”

“We might be seeing synergistic effects of people becoming less cautious in addition to the impacts of the delta variant. I think it’s a big call for caution.”

— Dr. Justin Lessler, PhD, Professor, Epidemiologist, University of North Carolina

Republicans, conspiracy theorists, and other morons who “don’t believe” that COVID-19 will affect, or even kill them, are in for a surprise.

Yes, the White man is killing himself — committing suicide.

And frankly, I could NOT care less.

The world will be better off with out them.

If ANYONEregardless of ethnicity, skin color, or any other factor – is STUPID ENOUGH to Read the rest of this entry »

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Conspiracy Theorist, COVID-19 Denier, Trump Supporter Dies

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, July 20, 2021

Another unvaccinated Trump supporter has died.

Ho, ho hum.

“NO,” it’s not Marjorie Taylor Greene – aka “MT-headed Greene” – nor is it QAnon conspiracy theorist & high school dropout Lauren Opal Roberts Boebert of Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District, and neither is it “Florida Man” Republican U.S. Representative Matt Gaetz, of CD-1.

Positive case infections are up 66% in all 50 states.

Turns out, it’s because unvaccinated Trump supporters are •DYING•.

99.5% of people who have died from COVID-19 in this month (July 2021) have been UNVACCINATED.

Those reckless individuals are endangering the lives of children, and those who, for genuine health reasons, cannot take the vaccine.

COVIDiots are being killed by a virus they don’t believe in, after refusing to take a vaccine they believe is dangerous… you can’t make this stuff up.

Linda Zuern, of Bourne, waves a Trump flag during a rally at the airport rotary in Hyannis, MA on November 7, 2019. Zuern and others gathered in support of President Donald Trump.

Oh!

The irony!

Tough shit, lady.

More like her need to die.

It’s called “NATURAL SELECTION.”

By the way… whatever happened to the formerly-Grand Old Party’s so-called “Death Panels”?

Unvaccinated Trump supporters don’t need a mask, and don’t need to get the COVID-19 vaccine because their “God will protect” them.

So, why do they need a gun?

Sad, Odd Fact: Donald Trump has killed more Americans than Osama Bin Laden.


https://www.rawstory.com/unvaccinated-trump-supporter/

On Tuesday, the Cape Cod Times reported that Read the rest of this entry »

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Texas Governor Greg Abbott

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, July 13, 2021

“You can shine your shoes and wear a suit.
“You can comb your hair and look quite cute.
“You can hide your face behind a smile.
“One thing you can’t hide,
“Is when you’re crippled inside.”

– John Lennon, “Crippled Inside,” from his 1971 album “Imagine”

Everything is BIGGER in Texas.

Including assholes.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott leaves the podium after speaking at the 11th annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast May 7 at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Washington. (CNS photo/Tyler Orsburn) See BREAKFAST May 7, 2015.

The news item linked below, is from Daily Wire, a so-called “conservative” reporting outlet.

Texas’ BIGGEST problem is an incompetent and crippled Governor.

It’s not just his legs that are lame.

https://www.dailywire.com/news/governor-abbott-democrats-who-fled-texas-to-stop-democracy-will-be-arrested-immediately-upon-return

But then, what can one say about a 26-year-old man who, as new Vanderbilt University Law School graduate studying for the upcoming bar exam, while out jogging with a friend on July 14, 1984 in Houston’s wealthy River Oaks neighborhood, in a freak accident, had an oak tree to fall upon him, and then, sued the landowner, and the tree service company, and won a literal tax-free insurance jackpot for life?

Abbott’s settlement included Read the rest of this entry »

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Cheating On Taxes, Bumming A Ride, And Economic Growth

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 30, 2021

Renown U.S. economist John Kenneth Galbraith (1908-2006) identified an economic theory – the “horse and sparrow” – which he described thusly:

“If you feed the horse enough oats,
some will pass through to the road for the sparrows.”

Today, we call that “trickle down” economics – the theory popularized and promoted by POTUS Ronald Reagan. Never mind that the word “trickle down” just sounds so very wrong – the picture of urine being foremost – but the renown London School of Economics has recently put the kibosh on that idea, after studying history of 38 nations over 50 years which did the same thing – cut taxes on the wealthy in the hopes that it would provide economic stimulus of various and sundry types.

It did not.

For anyone who’s been paying even the slightest amount of attention, they would know that the world’s wealthiest man – Jeff Bezos – paid practically no income taxes on his vast personal fortune, neither did his corporation, Amazon. He was by no means the only one who shirked their patriotic duty by cheating the government, there were many more – billionaire pal Elon Musk is among them.

Dr. John Kenneth Galbraith, PhD, was a noted economist and author, the Paul M. Warburg Professor of Economics, Emeritus, at Harvard University, former Ambassador to India, and former Presidential Advisor. Internationally renown for development of Keynesian and post-Keynesian economics, he was equally well-known for his wit and candor, evidenced in his prolific writings, which included over 30 books. His last book was a 1999 memoir “Name-Dropping,” in which he wrote about the historical individuals whom he’d known in his long, colorful life as an economist, professor, ambassador, and lifelong liberal.
Harvard University News Office image handout

As well, PayPal founder Peter Thiel, another billionaire, took unfair and unjust advantage of a Roth IRA – a savings vehicle created and designed to benefit the working families of America – and using tricks and maneuvers not available to the average person, turned a retirement account worth under $2000 in 1999, into a $5 billion tax-free windfall by the end of 2019. That same year, Forbes estimated his net worth at $2.3 billion – less than half of his Roth IRA’s value.

In stark contrast, the average Roth IRA was valued at $39,108 at the end of 2018.

So, we have one perspective, but let’s put things in even more clear focus, shall we?

How much is $5 billion?

If every single one of the 2.3 million people in Houston, Texas were to deposit $2,000 into a bank today, the total of all their accounts would still not equal what Peter Thiel has in his Roth IRA.

Of course, since a Roth IRA is a retirement income savings vehicle, taxation of deposited funds is not just significantly deferred until after the 60th birthday of the depositor, it is 100% TAX FREE FOREVER. So in essence, he cheated the system.

While you, I, and other patriotic Americans are dutifully paying our income taxes like the loyal citizens we are – paying for all of our nation’s governmental services, military service members salaries, defense budget, and more – most all wealthy Americans are very happy to continue shirking their responsibilities to pay their fair share, and are even more happy that you, I, and every other red-blooded patriotic American are picking up the tab for them.

This article details exactly how PayPal billionaire Peter Thiel truly cheated a system which was NOT designed for wealthy individuals.
https://www.propublica.org/article/lord-of-the-roths-how-tech-mogul-peter-thiel-turned-a-retirement-account-for-the-middle-class-into-a-5-billion-dollar-tax-free-piggy-bank

This article cites prospective Congressional action which will likely be taken following publication, and discovery of the abuses of the Roth IRA by Peter Thiel, and other ultra-wealthy individuals.
The Ultrawealthy Have Hijacked Roth IRAs. The Senate Finance Chair Is Eyeing a Crackdown.
https://www.propublica.org/article/the-ultrawealthy-have-hijacked-roth-iras-the-senate-finance-chair-is-eyeing-a-crackdown

Now, as for the Horse And Sparrow Theory, a research paper by the London School of Economics found that, contrary to the assertions of those who promoted them, tax cuts upon the wealthy DO NOT improve the economy in any way whatsoever.

The study examined Read the rest of this entry »

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Gerrymander 2021: Republicans To Choose Voters

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, June 28, 2021

“Redistricting is like an election in reverse! It’s a great event. Usually the voters get to pick the politicians. In redistricting, the politicians get to pick the voters!”

— Thomas Hofeller (1943-2018), Republican National Committee Redistricting Director, GOP strategist and district mapmaker at “Redistricting & Census 2000,” an event sponsored by the National Conference of State Legislatures, (see video at 33:50–34:24), at Henry Gonzales Convention Center, San Antonio, Texas

Should politicians choose their voters?

Or, should voters choose their politicians?

That’s the essence of what will be the next great political fight to come from Republicans.

And, if things go the way that many expect them to go, the GOP will crown themselves the victor.

“The fix is in,” as the saying goes.

Here’s one recent news item detailing how the formerly-Grand Old Party will manipulate the system:

Republicans Eye Nashville Crack-Up To Gain House Seat
By Reid Wilson – 06/20/21 04:32 PM EDT

“Republicans plotting to maximize their advantages in state legislatures across the country during the decennial redistricting process are considering cracking apart Tennessee’s largest city, an ambitious move that could signal how aggressively the party will try to rig maps in its favor in the coming months.

“In preliminary conversations, top Republicans in the Volunteer State have contemplated dramatically redrawing the boundaries of a district anchored in Nashville, one of just two U.S. House seats in Tennessee held by a Democratic member of Congress.

“The move would put the squeeze on Rep. Jim Cooper (D), the dean of Tennessee’s congressional delegation and a presence in Washington since he first won his district in 1982, save for an eight-year absence after he lost a race for a U.S. Senate seat in 1994.

“Cooper has never had trouble winning reelection: He ran unopposed in 2020, and he hasn’t taken less than 62 percent of the vote since the Republican wave of 2010.

“Cooper’s strength lies in Nashville’s Davidson County, home to about four in five of his constituents. The county gave President Biden almost two-thirds of the vote in 2020, while the smaller but more Republican suburbs in Dickson and Cheatham counties voted heavily for former President Trump.

“Nashville and Davidson County have been wholly contained within one congressional district since at least the 1950s, a logical function of its role as the population epicenter of Middle Tennessee.

“But if Tennessee Republicans decide to divide Davidson County between neighboring districts, Cooper may find himself facing the unpalatable decision to run in a district that is much more favorable to Republicans: All three of the neighboring districts — held by Reps. John Rose (R) to the north and east, Mark Green (R) to the west and south and Scott DesJarlais (R) to the southeast — gave Trump at least two-thirds of the vote.

“Tennessee has changed dramatically, in a lot of ways,” said Gregory Gleaves, a Republican strategist in Nashville. “I don’t think it would be that unusual for Nashville to get split. It happens in other states. There’s no law saying Davidson County is the one county that can’t be split.”

“Democrats would have little ability to resist the GOP power play. Republicans hold 26 of 33 seats in the state Senate, and 74 of 99 seats in the state House of Representatives. Gov. Bill Lee, also a Republican, has the final say in approving any new district maps.

It’s always going to be chopped up to the advantage of the ruling party. So that’s expected,” said state Rep. Antonio Parkinson (D), the chairman of the Tennessee state legislature’s Black Caucus. “It makes it harder for Democrats to get elected.”

“Cooper’s office did not respond to a request for comment. But he is no fan of partisan gerrymandering: Cooper introduced legislation earlier this year that would require states to create independent and bipartisan redistricting commissions.

Voters should continue to choose their elected officials — not the other way around,” Cooper said in a statement introducing the bill in January. “The redistricting process shouldn’t be about protecting the powerful and we need to fix it.”

“The U.S. Census Bureau has not put out block-level population data that will inform state legislative mapmakers, after the pandemic delayed data collection and analysis, so any potential plans to split Nashville are preliminary at most.

“But redistricting experts say they see the move to divide Tennessee’s biggest city among multiple districts, diluting the power of Nashville’s voters and giving Republicans a chance to pick up a seat, as emblematic of a strategy the GOP will use in other states.

This is a common tactic used by state legislators especially in order to crack voters into different districts,” said Ari Goldbloom-Helzner, a computational research analyst at the Electoral Innovation Lab at Princeton. “It makes it difficult for those groups to constitute a majority in electing a representative of their choice that represents their community.”

“Several other cities have been chopped between districts for partisan gain, too: In the last decade, Texas Republicans split Travis County, home of liberal Austin, among five separate congressional districts, four of which are held by Republicans. Pennsylvania Republicans drew district lines so bizarre in the increasingly Democratic Collar Counties around Philadelphia that the state Supreme Court set a new map of boundary lines in place for the 2018 elections. In Michigan, liberal Lansing is divided between districts held by Reps. Tim Walberg (R) and Elissa Slotkin (D), after Slotkin defeated Republican incumbent Mike Bishop in 2018.

“As the Census Bureau prepares to deliver new block-level data to states, Republicans and Democrats are beginning to outline strategies they will implement to take full advantage of the control they wield.

“Republicans, by dint of their advantage in so many state legislatures, will have a leg up. The GOP holds complete control over the redistricting process in 20 states that will collectively send 188 members to the House of Representatives. Democrats control the entire process in only seven states that account for 72 members of Congress.

“Sixteen states will draw new boundary lines through independent or bipartisan commissions or through power-sharing agreements because both Democrats and Republicans hold at least one lever of government. The seven remaining states send only one at-large member to Congress.

“The Republican advantage is less than it was a decade ago, just after the 2010 election handed the GOP control of a large number of governorships and state legislative chambers. But recent Supreme Court rulings have removed some of the guardrails that constrained legislatures last time around, potentially giving Republicans and Democrats alike greater freedom to exercise their control over the redistricting process.”
https://thehill.com/homenews/state-watch/559207-republicans-eye-nashville-crack-up-to-gain-house-seat

See also: The Path To The Supreme Court’s Big Gerrymandering Decision Led Justices Through Tennessee
by Joel Ebert, The Tennessean, July 4, 2019, 10PM CST
https://www.tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2019/07/05/supreme-court-partisan-gerrymandering-debate-barker-vs-carr/1623807001/

See also: Grand Divisions Episode 58: A Look At A Landmark Supreme Court Case With Tennessee Ties And Gerrymandering
by Joel Ebert, The Tennessean, July 9, 2019, 5AM CST
https://www.tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2019/07/09/tennessee-gerrymandering-baker-v-carr-supreme-court/1676767001/

If it’s wrong for one party to do it, it’s wrong for the other party to do it — regardless of which one is in power. Both parties would decry such an unjust and inequitably lopsided measure if the other one did it.

It’s not mere politics. The problem is very real, and is a dangerously destabilizing force upon our free and independent Constitutional processes, most notably upon voting, by making it ineffectual, null and void, and jeopardizing our national security and our democratic republic. In essence, it is a theft and usurpation of power out of the hands of The People, and into the pockets of politicians.

All that is thanks in large part to Thomas Hofeller, a Republican strategist who some say “perfected” the art of gerrymandering – a manipulative process designed to usurp power from the people, and instead, give it to politicians.

However, HR1 and companion bill S1, would put a stop to such abusive practices by establishing independent, nonpartisan redistricting boards in all 50 states, which is but one reason why that bill is so very important. It also puts an end to the abuses of “dark money,” and brings to a screeching halt the disastrous “money is free speech” SCOTUS ruling in Citizens United.

After Hofeller’s death, his daughter Stephanie discovered what amounted to a veritable treasure trove of information, all which was from his work drawing maps that would significantly benefit Republicans. What was embarrassing, was that all of his work was designed to limit the political influence of Blacks, Hispanics, and other non-White people. Stephanie’s discovery of his arguably racist work was so shocking, that the Republican party in North Carolina – where Hofeller’s maps work was successfully utilized by the GOP – sought to legally prevent her from publicly releasing his work.

They were unsuccessful.
See: https://www.TheHofellerFiles.com/
See also: https://election.princeton.edu/2020/01/13/the-hofeller-documents/

Thomas Hofeller’s work creating gerrymandered exclusionary political maps was nationwide and included redistricting in Arizona, Florida, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Ohio, Tennessee and Virginia, as well as Nassau County New York, and Galveston, and Nueces counties in Texas.

Hofeller was also significantly responsible for the idea of a prospective Census question “Is this person a United States citizen?” which was eventually nixed by the judicial system.

Stephanie said that her father’s stated objective was to use the manipulative process of gerrymandering to “create a system wherein the Republican nominee would win. State legislature, it doesn’t matter who votes for what. Congress, it doesn’t matter who votes for what. And president, it doesn’t matter.”

Ms. Hofeller said that Read the rest of this entry »

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Oregon US Representative Earl Blumenauer Introduces Blueprint to Legalize Marijuana

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, June 17, 2021

PREDICTION:

Cannabis WILL be legalized within the next 6 – 8 months at the Federal level.

As state after state, and nation after nation is legalizing or decriminalizing cannabis in one form, or another, the United States is facing a decision which was made nearly 100 years ago to make illegal a practically harmless substance, which itself has shown, and continues to show significant promise for the amelioration of serious disease, malady, and human suffering.

According to the Drug Enforcement Administration, in their 2017 “Drugs of Abuse” report,

“No deaths from overdose of marijuana have been reported.”

The National Cancer Institute has written that it’s impossible to overdose on cannabis, because our body’s cannabinoid receptors — the chemicals that bind to THC — are not located in areas of the brainstem that control respiration. For that reason, a “lethal dose” of cannabis is like the flying spaghetti monster: It DOES NOT EXIST.

In stark contrast, the CDC has stated in January 2018 that

excessive alcohol use led to approximately 88,000 deaths.

Significantly greater lethality comes from tobacco use, and in April 2018, the CDC stated that

cigarette smoking kills more than 480,000 Americans each year.

In 1972, the Schaffer Commission, officially, the National Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, issued a report entitled Marihuana: A signal of misunderstanding which was the first report by the United States Commission on Marihuana and Drug Abuse, was largely dismissive of specious claims that there was danger in its use, and recommended ending marijuana prohibition and adopting other methods to discourage use.

Specifically, it debunked false claims made about cannabis, and found that, contrary to earlier assertions made about during efforts to keep it illegal,

“marihuana was usually found to inhibit the expression of aggressive impulses by pacifying the user.”

It stated further that,

“neither informed current professional opinion nor empirical research, ranging from the 1930’s to the present, has produced systematic evidence to support the thesis that marihuana use, by itself, either invariably or generally leads to or causes crime, including acts of violence, juvenile delinquency or aggressive behavior.”

Another infamously false claim that marijuana use caused “insanity,” was similarly debunked, and the Commission wrote that

“previous estimates of marihuana’s role in causing crime and insanity were based on quite erroneous information.”

They even warned that
maintaining cannabis’ illegal status
“carries heavy social costs”
and that
“the better method {to discourage its use}
is persuasion
rather than prosecution.”

And in fact, they wrote that “we reject the total prohibition approach and its variations” and instead recommended “a decriminalization of possession of marihuana for personal use on both the state and federal levels.”

A portion of their recommendation was regulation, and wrote in part that “by establishing a legitimate channel of supply and distribution, society can theoretically control the quality and potency of the product.”

Of course, none of the recommendations were followed, and instead, Nixon, the paranoid president who maintained an “enemies list” (and recorded conversations, and narrowly missed criminal indictment, for which reason he resigned the Presidency), initiated his now-infamously-failed “War on Drugs,” and kept marijuana listed on Schedule I.

Nixon’s Domestic Policy Advisor, John Erlichman (1925-1999), was quoted by Dan Baum in Harper’s Magazine April 2016, and said the following of Nixon’s War on Drugs:

“The Nixon campaign in 1968,
and the Nixon White House after that,
had two enemies:
The antiwar left and Black people.
You understand what I’m saying?
We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be
either against the war or Black,
but by getting the public to
associate the hippies with marijuana
and Blacks with heroin,
and then criminalizing both heavily,
we could disrupt those communities.
We could arrest their leaders,
raid their homes,
break up their meetings,
and vilify them night after night on the evening news.
Did we know we were lying about the drugs?
Of course we did.”

Such statements seem to very clearly suggest that laws prohibiting cannabis consumption were left in place for one purpose alone, and that is to use the instrument of law to keep under foot those who might be socially undesirable – most notably, the poor, and ethnic minorities – and that is an egregious abuse of law, and contradicts almost every idea of equality under law in our Constitution.

Our Federal government, along with State and Local governments, regulates and taxes beverage Alcohol and Tobacco (which is 2/3 of the ATF’s name), and does so successfully, and in the process, generates significant revenue for all three levels of governments. Along with that, entrepreneurial enterprises in those two industries hire almost countless numbers of people, and generate significant revenue nationally, and globally through export.

The Libertarian think-tank Cato Institute, in their statement which decries that which they call the “nanny state,” quotes late, former POTUS Ronald Reagan in former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan’s book “The Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World,” as having said, “Government exists to protect us from each other. Where government has gone beyond its limits is in deciding to protect us from ourselves.” (Penguin Press, Chapter 4, (p. 87), 2007.)

In keeping with the overall sentiment expressed in the Shafer Commission report, Read the rest of this entry »

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50 Years Of Failure – Total Wa$te Of Time And Money

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, June 17, 2021

How long does it take to see a failed social experiment for what it is – a total, abysmal failure, which has taken a wrecking ball to society?

Apparently, at least 50 years.

We learned much more quickly with beverage alcohol.


The War On Drugs: 50 Years Later

After 50 Years Of The War On Drugs, “What Good Is It Doing For Us?”

https://www.npr.org/2021/06/17/1006495476/after-50-years-of-the-war-on-drugs-what-good-is-it-doing-for-us

When Aaron Hinton walked through the housing project in Brownsville on a recent summer afternoon, he voiced love and pride for this tight-knit, but troubled working-class neighborhood in New York City where he grew up.

He pointed to a community garden, the lush plots of vegetables and flowers tended by volunteers, and to the library where he has led after-school programs for kids.

But he also expressed deep rage and sorrow over the scars left by the nation’s 50-year-long War on Drugs. “What good is it doing for us?,” Hinton asked.

As the United States’ harsh approach to drug use and addiction hits the half-century milestone, this question is being asked by a growing number of lawmakers, public health experts and community leaders.

In many parts of the U.S., some of the most severe policies implemented during the drug war are being scaled back or scrapped altogether.

Hinton, a 37-year-old community organizer and activist, said the reckoning is long overdue. He described watching Black men like himself get caught up in drugs year after year and swept into the nation’s burgeoning prison system.

“They’re spending so much money on these prisons to keep kids locked up. They don’t even spend a fraction of that money sending them to college or some kind of school,”  said Hinton, shaking his head.

Republican President Richard Nixon explains aspects of the special message sent to the Congress, June 17, 1971, asking for an extra $155 million for a new program to start his infamous social experiment which he called the “War on Drugs.” He labeled addiction and drug misuse “a national emergency” and said the money would be used to “tighten the noose around the necks of drug peddlers and thereby loosen the noose around the necks of drug users.” In 50 years, his plan has proven to be an abysmal failure. Behind him on the LEFT is Egil Krogh, Deputy Director of the Domestic Council. At right is Dr. Jerome Jaffe, MD who Nixon recruited to lead a new drug strategy. (AP Photo/Harvey Georges)

Hinton has lived his whole life under the drug war. He said Brownsville needed help coping with cocaine, heroin and drug-related crime that took root here in the 1970s and 1980s.

His own family was scarred by addiction.

“I’ve known my mom to be a drug user my whole entire life. She chose to run the streets and left me with my great-grandmother,” Hinton said.

Four years ago, his mom overdosed and died after taking prescription painkillers, part of the opioid epidemic that has killed hundreds of thousands of Americans.

Hinton said her death sealed his belief that tough drug war policies and aggressive police tactics would never make his family or his community safer.

The nation pivots (slowly) as evidence mounts against the drug war

During months of interviews for this project, NPR found a growing consensus across the political spectrum — including among some in law enforcement — that the drug war simply didn’t work.

“We have been involved in the failed War on Drugs for so very long,” said retired Major Neill Franklin, a retired Major with the Baltimore City Police and the Maryland State Police who led drug task forces for years.

During a press conference this week, he said, Read the rest of this entry »

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Joe Manchin, Kyrsten Sinema & John C. Calhoun Walk Into A Bar…

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, June 12, 2021

Joe orders a Black Russian, Kyrsten orders a White Russian, and John C. Calhoun orders a filibuster.

Nobody got any drinks.

West Virginia U.S. Senator Joe Manchin, a Democrat in his 2nd term has an illustrious history as a public servant which began with election to the state’s House of Delegates, then to the State Senate, and from there to statewide office as WV Secretary of State, and then as Governor.

In a June 6, 2021 Op-Ed published in the Charleston Gazette-Mail, he announced his opposition to H.R.1 – the “For the People Act of 2021” – ostensibly because of a wholesale lack of Republican support for it, including opposition to the idea of eliminating the filibuster.

Among other things, the bill would unify election law throughout the 50 United States by establishing uniform standards for federal elections, establish non-partisan independent state redistricting commissions in all 50 states, establish a Federal Judicial Code of Conduct, outlaw any action that would “corruptly hinder, interfere with, or prevent another person from registering to vote” or assisting another to register to vote, mandate “motor voter” registration when applying for a driver license, prohibit partisan voting registration “dirty tricks” to cull voters without their knowledge, require voter-verified permanent paper ballots, mandate early voting, as well as numerous other significantly beneficial improvements to national security and election law.

Relatedly, Arizona Senator Krysten Sinema, a Democrat two years into her first term, has announced her opposition to eliminating the filibuster – a procedural tool most often used by the minority to thwart legislation, by requiring at least 60 votes to proceed, thereby preventing it from even being discussed, in order to effectively kill the prospective measure.

The Senate’s 2 Independents – Bernie Sanders of Vermont, and Angus King of Maine – caucus with the Democrats, and in the case of now-rare tie votes, the Vice President Kamala Harris would cast any tie-breaking vote… if it weren’t for the filibuster – which has now degenerated into a mere threat, with no real “action” required to “activate” it, per se. It has become the quintessential model, and most public example of, pathological passive-aggressive behavior – doing nothing (the passive behavior) to control, or manipulate others (the aggressive behavior).

Back To The Future

At one time, or another, Republicans and Democrats have separately expressed desire to eliminate the obstructionist tactic of the filibuster, which was not supported by the Founders, but rather, was a response to Vice President Aaron Burr’s criticism (shortly after his indictment for the murder of Alexander Hamilton) that the Senate’s rules were a mess, with numerous rules that duplicated each other, and in particular, singled out the “previous question” motion. So, when the Senate met the next year in 1806, they eliminated the “previous question” motion of parliamentary procedure, which functionally ceased debate using a simple majority vote… because Aaron Burr told them to.

Deleting that rule did not immediately cause filibusters to break out all over, but merely made it possible for them to happen — because there was no longer a Senate rule that could have enabled a simple majority to cut off debate. It was only several decades later in 1837 that the minority exploited the insufficient limits on rules of debate, and had the first filibuster.

There were three essential reasons why the filibuster was so rare, and infrequently used before the Civil War, because:

1.) The Senate operated by majority rule, and Senators expected that matters would be brought to a vote;
2.) The Senate had little work to do in that era, and there was plenty of time to wait out any opposition, and;
3.) Voting coalitions in the Senate were not as polarized as they later became.

Catch-22

As our nation grew, and added states, so did the Senate add more members. With growth, came increased work. And by 1880, every Congress had at least one episode of filibustered obstructionism, most of which were unconcerned with important matters of the day, and instead were focused upon trivial, inconsequential matters.

So, when filibusters did occur, Senate leaders tried to ban them. Throughout the 19th and early 20th centuries Senate leaders tried to reinstate the “previous question” motion – but they failed repeatedly – and ever since, have long sought a procedure to end debate on any given matter.

More often than not, senators gave up any hope for reform when they became aware that opponents to the elimination of the filibuster would kill any such effort at changing the rules to eliminate the filibuster — ironically, by filibustering — thereby putting the majority’s other priorities at risk. Because they were unable to reform the Senate’s rules, leaders developed other innovations such as unanimous consent agreements, which measures were an option of second resort for managing a chamber which by then, was prone to filibusters.

In response, the Senate changed… but not by much.

“Unanimous Consent” agreements emerged like mushrooms after a springtime rain shower. And then, cloture was created in 1917 during the waning days of World War I. Not “simple majority” cloture, but “supermajority” cloture. The Senate filibustered for 23 days following President Woodrow Wilson’s proposal to arm merchant marine ships during WWI. It also ground to a halt all other work in the Senate. The President criticized the Senate by saying it was

“the only legislative body in the world which cannot act when its majority is ready for action. A little group of willful men, representing no opinion but their own, have rendered the great government of the United States helpless and contemptible.”

In response to President Wilson’s withering criticism, a bipartisan Senate committee was formed to negotiate the form of the rule. Five of the six Democrats supported a simple majority rule; one Republican supported a supermajority rule; and one Republican preferred no rule. Negotiators then struck a compromise:

1.) Cloture would require two-thirds of senators voting;
2.) Opponents promised not to block or weaken the proposal, and;
3.) Supporters promised to drop their own proposal for simple majority cloture — a proposal which was supported by at least 40 senators.

Rule 22 – the cloture rule, to cease filibuster by a two-thirds majority vote – was adopted 76-3, on March 8, 1917.

Just Say No

Without Senators Manchin and Sinema’s support on vital bills forwarded from the narrow Democratic majority House, it’s practically assured that Republicans – who control 50 Senate seats – will once again, control movements of all legislation, despite the fact that when they were in control as the majority, they “circled their wagons” and got things done, even with Democratic opposition.

And, at a recent press event in his home state on May 5, 2021, Senate Minority Leader Kentucky Republican “Moscow” Mitch McConnell said,

“One hundred percent of our focus is on stopping this new administration.”

So, it very much looks like the Senate’s legislative “Grim Reaper” is back to his old manipulative tricks, despite being in the minority – just because he can.

Prophecy Fulfilled

As many political scientists, politicians, and analysts have observed, increasingly, the formerly Grand Old Party is losing grassroots support on a broad basis. But, it’s not as if such problems weren’t predictable. On February 1, 1993 Washington Post Reporter Michael Weisskopf wrote that:

“The gospel lobby evolved with the explosion of satellite and cable television, hitting its national political peak in the presidential election of Ronald Reagan in 1980.

“Unlike other powerful interests, it does not lavish campaign funds on candidates for Congress nor does it entertain them. The strength of fundamentalist leaders lies in their flocks. Corporations pay public relations firms millions of dollars to contrive the kind of grass-roots response that Falwell or Pat Robertson can galvanize in a televised sermon. Their followers are largely poor, uneducated and easy to command.

“The thing that makes them powerful, is they’re mobilizable. You can activate them to vote, and that’s particularly important in congressional primaries where the turnout is usually low. Some studies put the number of evangelical Americans as high as 40 million, with the vast majority considered politically conservative,” said Seymour Martin Lipset (d.2006), professor of public policy at George Mason University.”

What Michael Weisskopf wrote caused such an outrage and an uproar, so much so to the extent that the Post was moved to write some type of retraction as a “correction.”

It’s always easier to ask forgiveness, than permission.

But, what Weisskopf wrote about the predominately Rural, Republican-voting, White Protestant Evangelicals – that “Their followers are largely poor, uneducated and easy to command” – was true then, and it’s even more true now.

Folks don’t get mad because of falsehoods, or scurrilous accusations.

They get mad because of truth.

While campaigning for the Republican party’s nomination, after winning Nevada’s Republican caucuses on February 23, 2016, the later-45th President exclaimed, “I love the poorly-educated!”

Of course he does — because they’re too stupid to know when they’re being played for a fool. And he played them like a fiddle – like Nero, while Rome burned.

The once-Grand Old Party has demonstrably become the Party of Poorly-Educated, Low-Skilled, Poorly-Paid and Often-Impoverished, Rural Working Class Whites who watch and believe Fox News like religion – especially men – who twice voted for Trump, still believe his Big Lie, earn well under $50K annually, and increasingly vote Republican – against their own best self-interest.

They support candidates whose exclusive guiding political philosophy is to refuse endorsing higher wages, healthcare, education, and other matters of direct concern to them and their families, and magically believe that a privatized, laissez-faire free market everything will solve all problems. They are becoming, or have become, a minority voting bloc whose interests are not represented by the political party for which they increasingly vote.

They are, in essence, deluded.

We’re Going Down

In the few days before the January 6 insurrectionist attack upon Congress at the Capitol, led by far right-wing extremist Kentucky Republican Representative Read the rest of this entry »

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A Taxing Proposition

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 9, 2021

“Taxes are what we pay for civilized society, including the chance to insure.


A penalty, on the other hand, is intended altogether to prevent the thing punished.”

–– U.S. Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr., dissenting opinion, “Compañía General de Tabacos de Filipinas v. Collector of Internal Revenue,” 275 U.S. 87, October term 1927, p100

On that court were Chief Justice William Howard Taft; Associate Justices Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.; Willis Van Devanter; James C. McReynolds; Louis Brandeis; George Sutherland; Pierce Butler; Edward T. Sanford, and; Harlan F. Stone.

Holmes, Brandeis, and Taft are the only names many remember from that group.

Then-POTUS Warren G. Harding, a Republican, nominated Taft, also a Republican, to become Chief Justice (1921–1930) following the death of CJ Edward Douglass White, a Democrat, whom Taft had appointed as CJ in December 1910, while Taft was serving as President (1909–1913). Taft is, to-date, the only individual to have ever served in both positions – President, and SCOTUS Chief Justice.

But, here are a couple interesting facts:

1.) From July 4, 1901 until December 23, 1903, Taft was Governor-General of the Philippines, having been appointed by POTUS William McKinley. Having held that office previously, he should have recused himself from the 1927 case “Compañía General de Tabacos de Filipinas v. Collector of Internal Revenue.” But, he did not.

2.) Edward Douglass White served in the Confederate Army during the Civil War, was a strident segregationist, and upheld racist laws which came before the court, including the notorious Plessy v. Ferguson case which gave rise to the “separate but equal” doctrine, and reinforced racist practices in the United States.

Today, such obvious conflicts of interest would not be tolerated. And I note this with a mark of appreciation: Justice Brett Kavanaugh recently recused himself (did not participate in) from a recent case before the court, because his father held some stock in one company being represented to the court.

Technically, “involvement” at that level exclusively doesn’t violate ethics rules, but having erred on the side of caution – exercised jurisprudential reservation – is commendable. That is because it demonstrates Read the rest of this entry »

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It’s True: The Über-Wealthy Pay ZERO Income Taxes

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Moochers.


We are disclosing the tax details of the richest Americans because we believe the public interest in an informed debate outweighs privacy considerations.

Today, ProPublica is launching the first in a series of stories based on the private tax data of some of our nation’s richest citizens. We obtained the information from an anonymous source who provided us with large amounts of information on the ultrawealthy, everything from the taxes they paid to the income they reported to the profits from their stock trades.

In the coming months, we plan to use this material to explore how the nation’s wealthiest people — roughly the .001% — exploit the structure of our tax code to avoid the tax burdens borne by ordinary citizens.

Many will ask about the ethics of publishing such private data. We are doing so — quite selectively and carefully — because we believe it serves the public interest in fundamental ways, allowing readers to see patterns that were until now hidden.

Tax experts have long understood that the wealthiest Americans reap outsized benefits from the federal tax code’s emphasis on taxing income rather than assets like stock holdings and property. Yet, when The New York Times disclosed in 2020 that President Donald Trump had amassed so many deductions he paid no taxes in 11 of 18 years, it was assumed that his case was an anomaly, reflecting the unique breaks real estate developers receive under our tax system.

It is now clear that there isn’t just one such taxpayer — there are many, in multiple industries. We believe that disclosing the identities of billionaires who paid little to no taxes in years their fortunes grew by billions of dollars will help readers understand the magnitude of the tax advantages the ultrarich enjoy.

https://www.propublica.org/article/why-we-are-publishing-the-tax-secrets-of-the-001


“America’s billionaires avail themselves of
tax-avoidance strategies
beyond the reach
of
ordinary people.
Their wealth derives from the
skyrocketing value of their assets,
like stock and property.
Those gains are not defined
by U.S. laws as taxable income
unless and until the billionaires sell.”

In 2007, Jeff Bezos, then a multibillionaire and now the world’s richest man, did not pay a penny in federal income taxes. He achieved the feat again in 2011. In 2018, Tesla founder Elon Musk, the second-richest person in the world, also paid no federal income taxes.

Typical Americans his age paid more in taxes than they saw in wealth growth over that period.

For every $100 of wealth growth from
2006 to 2018,
typical Americans paid $160 in taxes.

Bezos paid only $1.09.

Michael Bloomberg managed to do the same in recent years. Billionaire investor Carl Icahn did it twice. George Soros paid no federal income tax three years in a row.

ProPublica has obtained a vast trove of Internal Revenue Service data on the tax returns of thousands of the nation’s wealthiest people, covering more than 15 years. The data provides an unprecedented look inside the financial lives of America’s titans of business, including Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Rupert Murdoch and Mark Zuckerberg. It shows not just their income and taxes, but also their investments, stock trades, gambling winnings and even the results of audits.

Taken together, it demolishes

The Cornerstone myth of the American tax system:

That everyone pays their fair share and the richest Americans pay the most.

The IRS records show that the wealthiest can — perfectly legally — pay income taxes that are only a tiny fraction of the hundreds of millions, if not billions, their fortunes grow each year.

Many Americans live paycheck to paycheck, amassing little wealth and paying the federal government a percentage of their income that rises if they earn more. In recent years, the median American household earned about $70,000 annually and paid 14% in federal taxes. The highest income tax rate, 37%, kicked in this year, for couples, on earnings above $628,300.

The confidential tax records obtained by ProPublica show that the ultrarich effectively sidestep this system.

American multi-BILLIONAIRES
LEFT to RIGHT, TOP to BOTTOM: Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), Michael Bloomberg (Bloomberg), Rupert Murdoch (News Corp), Warren Buffett (Berkshire Hathaway), Carl Icahn (Icahn Enterprises), George Soros (Soros Fund)

America’s billionaires avail themselves of tax-avoidance strategies beyond the reach of ordinary people. Their wealth derives from the skyrocketing value of their assets, like stock and property. Those gains are not defined by U.S. laws as taxable income unless and until the billionaires sell.

To capture the financial reality of the richest Americans, ProPublica undertook an analysis that has never been done before. We compared how much in taxes the 25 richest Americans paid each year to how much Forbes estimated their wealth grew in that same time period.

We’re going to call that their true tax rate.

The results are stark. According to Forbes, those 25 people saw their net worth rise a collective $401 billion from 2014 to 2018. They paid a total of $13.6 billion in federal income taxes in those five years, the IRS data shows. That’s a staggering sum, but it amounts to a true tax rate of only 3.4%.

It’s a completely different picture for middle-class Americans, for example, wage earners in their early 40s who have amassed a typical amount of wealth for people their age. From 2014 to 2018, such households saw their net worth expand by about $65,000 after taxes on average, mostly due to the rise in value of their homes. But because the vast bulk of their earnings were salaries, their tax bills were almost as much, nearly $62,000, over that five-year period.

No one among the 25 wealthiest avoided as much tax as Buffett, the grandfatherly centibillionaire. That’s perhaps surprising, given his public stance as an advocate of higher taxes for the rich. According to Forbes, his riches rose $24.3 billion between 2014 and 2018. Over those years, the data shows, Buffett reported paying $23.7 million in taxes.

That works out to a true tax rate of 0.1%, or less than 10 cents for every $100 he added to his wealth.

In the coming months, ProPublica will use the IRS data we have obtained to explore in detail how the ultrawealthy avoid taxes, exploit loopholes and escape scrutiny from federal auditors.

Experts have long understood the broad outlines of how little the wealthy are taxed in the United States, and many lay people have long suspected the same thing.

But few specifics about individuals ever emerge in public. Tax information is among the most zealously guarded secrets in the federal government. ProPublica has decided to reveal individual tax information of some of the wealthiest Americans because it is only by seeing specifics that the public can understand the realities of the country’s tax system.

Consider Bezos’ 2007, one of the years he paid zero in federal income taxes. Amazon’s stock more than doubled. Bezos’ fortune leapt $3.8 billion, according to Forbes, whose wealth estimates are widely cited. How did a person enjoying that sort of wealth explosion end up paying no income tax?

In that year, Bezos, who filed his taxes jointly with his then-wife, MacKenzie Scott, reported Read the rest of this entry »

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The Best

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, June 5, 2021

The Best – and Worst – of Everything

If you’ve done any Internet-based searches for practically any product, good, or service, you may have noticed at least one recurring theme:

Best.

In an email today, I found the following:

• The 100 Best Movies on Netflix (June 2021)
• The 30 Best Horror TV Shows on Netflix
• The Best Sitcoms on Netflix Right Now (June 2021)
• The 35 Best Horror Movies on Netflix Right Now
• The 20 Best Sci-Fi Movies on Netflix (June 2021)
• The Best Comedies on Netflix Right Now (June 2021)
• The 7 Best Fantasy Movies on Netflix
• The Trailer Park: The Best New Movie Trailers of the
• The 60 Best Horror Movies on Amazon Prime Video Right Now (2021)
• The 10 Best Movies in Theaters Right Now
• The Best Sci-Fi Movies on Amazon Prime (2021)

I thought that I would vomit after reading that garbage, because it was so nauseating.

The best

Slap the word “best” into the headline, and POOF! “Suddenly,” it’s the ultimate, never-to-be challenged, or surpassed. And who, or what group established any “standards” by which the items were compared to establish what is “best,” or “worst”?

And what are the qualifications of the writers to establish what thing is “best,” or not?

It’s so just because they say so.

Again, an utter failure.

And then, when it comes to “news,” or what is often allegedly passed off as “news,” there are at least Read the rest of this entry »

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America Invented Global Narcotraffickers

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, June 4, 2021

Make no mistake, I openly advocate for the wholesale legalization, taxation, and regulation of cannabis similarly as is done for beverage alcohol — though I have not always. And yet, as a licensed healthcare professional, I am under no misguided notion that there are genuine scientific considerations to be had.

Like many others, this is not a simple matter, per se — it is as complex as we human beings, with myriad matters which “Just Say ‘NO!’” has never, nor will ever, satisfy. Science and understanding is not advanced by the word “NO!”

Similarly as well, there is practically no disagreement that historic American jurisprudence on the matter not only had its genesis with deep roots in racism – which remains to this day – but has almost single-handedly created the global criminal cabal of narcotrafficking enterprises that have now become international terrorist organizations. It has now become a matter of national security, and not just for the United States. Global security is predicated upon addressing these concerns.

Jesus Malverde is a mythical figure, allegedly born as Jesús Juárez Mazo on December 24, 1870, just outside Culiacán, the state capital of Sinaloa, whom is said to be the “patron saint” of “narcotraficantes” (drug traffickers), and is known by his devotees as “el ángel de los pobres” (the angel of the poor).
According to legend, he was a lifetime resident of Sinaloa, an historically poverty-stricken area which is now recognized as the de facto headquarters location for a bloodthirsty global narcotrafficking cartel bearing the state’s name, which is infamous for their nefarious misdeeds, cold-blooded murders, and other heinous acts.
The legends, which vary widely, typically assert that Malverde was a “Robinhood” type character, who stole from the wealthy and distributed to the poor. In reality, narco-money has significantly revitalized Sinaloa, and to a large extent, reinforced ancient customs, including the veneration of folk saints as Jesus Malverde.

It is, in fact, fueling the civil sociopolitical upheaval in Central American nations such as Read the rest of this entry »

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“God told me to.” A hallmark of mental instability.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, June 4, 2021

I would be very surprised if the judge in his case did not mandate that he receive mental health help. And, s/he certainly should.

The man is clearly delusional.

And with severe psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia, that’s often the case, that, not only are the individuals delusional, but they’re also frequently highly religious.


Man accused of stealing fire service car from Alabama fire station.
Said,“God told me to.”

By Mary Helene Hall
mhall@al.com
2021-06-03, 15:05:32
https://www.al.com/news/2021/06/man-accused-of-stealing-marked-car-from-alabama-fire-station-god-told-me-to.html

A man accused of stealing a marked fire vehicle from a Prichard, Alabama Fire-Rescue station was arrested Wednesday. Prichard is in Mobile County, and adjacent the City of Mobile on its Northern border. The town’s population is under 23,000.

According to FOX10 News – WALA-TV, Virtual Channel 10 (RF Channel 9), Mobile, Alabama – Jeffrey McCants was found a few hours after the crime was committed. The vehicle was stolen from the central station on Turner Road.

Prichard Police tracked the car down and got the suspect out at gun point.

Surveillance video shows Jeffery McCants Jr. walking into central fire station on Turner Road in Prichard.

He had a gas can in his hand and was looking in an area where Prichard Fire and Rescue members say they once stored gasoline. He then walked over to the station’s Ford Crown Victoria, got inside, sat there for a moment and then started it up. He then backed it up, and drove it out of the garage.

“It had the keys in it. I needed some gas so therefore I took the car, I had to. It was the only way to get gas. It said ‘hey man, you’ll get there faster if you take me,’ so I said, ‘ok, car, ima take it,’ so I took it and I washed it. I washed the car,” he said.

The fire department said Read the rest of this entry »

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Michael Flynn Should Be Reactivated, Tried Under UCMJ, And Have Retirement Revoked

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, Director, Defense Intelligence Agency; official portrait

This past Sunday, 30 May 2021, in Dallas, TX, disgraced former National Security Advisor LTG Michael Flynn, U.S. Army (ret.) made remarks at a QAnon gathering which billed itself as a “For God & and Country Patriot Roundup.”

An audience member who identified himself as a Marine, asked Mr. Flynn:
“I want to know why what happened in Minamar [sic]can’t happen here.”

Mr. Flynn replied:
“No reason, I mean, it should happen here. No reason. That’s right.”


Congress should revoke Mr. Flynn’s Army (Federal Government) retirement.

Michael Flynn with Vladimir Putin at RT (Russia Today, a state propaganda outlet) sponsored dinner.

And, he should be prosecuted under the Uniform Code of Military Justice.

“Under the so-called “Hiss Act,” Members of Congress (and most other officers and employees of the federal government) will forfeit their entire federal employee retirement annuities if convicted of a federal crime that relates to espionage, treason, or several other national security offenses against the United States.”

–– reference: “Loss of Federal Pensions for Members of Congress Convicted of Certain Offenses,” 96-530, by Jack Maskell, Legislative Attorney, September 12, 2013, Congressional Research Service, 7-5700, http://www.crs.gov

Military retirees are also still subject to the UCMJ. There is also the possibility that Flynn could be reactivated, and charged under the UCMJ in order to stop his retirement.

DoD Financial Management Regulation, Volume 7B, CHAPTER 3 PAYMENT RESTRICTIONS, SECTION C – EXPIRATION OF ELIGIBILITY TO RETIRED PAY, 30321. Conditions

e. National Security Violations Within the Scope of 5 U.S.C. 8311-8322.
Note: The “Hiss Act,” Public Law 769,1 Sep 1954 (68 Stat 1142) codified as 5 U.S.C. 2281-2288. The Act, as amended, prohibited the payment of retired pay to military personnel who were convicted of any Read the rest of this entry »

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GOP Insurrectionists

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 2, 2021

The Insurrectionist wing of the Republican Party has problems.

Fox News Republicans…

…Live in their own little world.

But most objective observers already knew that – or, at least, strongly suspected it.

Now, scientific research has shown it to be true.

On practically every issue in society touching upon government has policy, or law, Fox News Republicans are far right wing extremists on everything.

And, their opinion of the 45th President is similarly high – and disturbingly so, at 98%.

The negative correlation – that of overwhelmingly negative views of high-profile Democrats – is no less than 93%.

There is in many cases a disparity between Fox News Republicans (FNRs) and Republicans (Rs). For example, FNRs gave the 45th President an 80% Strongly Approve (SA) rating, while Non-Fox News Republicans (NFNRs)  gave him 42% Strong Approval (SA). There were similar disparities between FNRs and NFNRs on matters of economic importance, with FNRs expressing 86% SA, while NFNRs were 53% SA.

Even on handling of the coronavirus pandemic, FNRs were almost double the SA difference with 59%, while NFNRs were 29%. And on dealing with protests following police killings of Black Americans, FNRs had 55% SA, while NFNRs had 28% SA.

The disparity, chasm, and gulf between FNRs an NFNRs demonstrates that the Once Grand Old Party is not merely fractured, fissured, or split, but broken asunder, and perhaps beyond repair.

The differences and the issues were almost stereotypical in their responses, whether Abortion, Appointment of SCOTUS Justices, Jobs/Unemployment, Immigration, Federal Deficit, Trade Agreements, Healthcare, coronavirus pandemic, Foreign governments’ interference in US election, Racial inequality, Increasing disparity between rich & poor, and climate change. The differences between FNRs an NFNRs was at least 3%, and as great as 20%+.

And this is telling, as well:

“Fox News Republicans are more likely than all Americans and non–Fox News Republicans to say that Confederate symbols are more symbols of Southern pride than symbols of racism. More than nine in ten Fox News Republicans believe that both Confederate flags (92%) and monuments to Confederate soldiers (94%) are symbols of Southern pride. Non–Fox News Republicans are only somewhat less likely to say the same about flags and monuments (81% and 87%, respectively). All Americans are much more divided, with 47% who say the flag is a symbol of Southern pride and 59% who say the same of Confederate monuments.”

And interestingly, they also believe that they are victims of discrimination:

“Consistent with their other views on discrimination, more than eight in ten Fox News Republicans (83%) agree with the statement that “discrimination against white Americans has become as big a problem as discrimination against Black Americans and other minorities.” Two-thirds of non-Fox News Republicans (66%) agree with the statement, compared to just 42% of all Americans.”

Fox News Republicans
• Urban/Suburban 79
• White 81
• Male 57
• Evangelical/Mainline Protestant 36/21
• No College Degree 70
• Attend religious services once or more weekly 46
• Almost evenly distributed ages 30-65+ 30-49/30; 50-64/28; 65+/32
• Household income $50,000-$100,000 43

The survey was conducted in all 50 states by Read the rest of this entry »

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Research: Most Religious Americans Support Broad Cannabis Legalization

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 2, 2021

A Pew Research Center survey conducted April 5-11, 2021 among 5109 randomly sampled U.S. adults who were all members of Pew Research Center’s American Trends Panel – a group of over 10,000 adults randomly selected from throughout all 50 states who regularly participate in Pew’s surveys – found that most religiously affiliated Americans favor broad cannabis legalization.

Compared with other religiously affiliated groups, at 44%, White Evangelicals were Read the rest of this entry »

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Is White Supremacy The New World Order?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 31, 2021

Let’s get one thing straight: The United States Department of Justice, agencies of National Security, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation should waste no time in rounding up White Supremacist scum and prosecuting them for every imaginable crime, hate crime, treason, using RICO statutes, and every law enforcement tool available to them.

The Capital Police should have used flame throwers to quell the goddamned insurrectionists, and cooked those domestic terrorist motherfuckers to a toasty, black, crispy piece of garbage.

Every. God. Damn. One. Of. Them.


From the Past, a Chilling Warning About the Extremists of the Present

By Neil MacFarquhar
May 1 ,2021

June 18, 1984 – Alan Berg, a liberal Jewish attorney talk show host in Denver, Colorado at KHOW Radlo, lies slain in the driveway of his townhome, next to his black VW Beetle convertible. He had returned from dinner date with his wife and was gunned down in retaliation for speaking his views opposing White Supremacy and racism by members of White Supremacist group “The Order” who illegally modified a semi-automatic MAC-10 to become a fully automatic submachine gun, and was shot 12 times. (Photo By Lyn Alweis/The Denver Post via Getty Images)

They robbed an armored car outside a sprawling Seattle shopping mall.

They bombed a synagogue in Boise, Idaho, and within weeks assassinated a Jewish talk radio attorney host in Denver.

Then a month later, they plundered another armored car on a California highway in a spectacular daylight heist that netted more than $3.6 million.

What initially seemed to F.B.I. agents like distant, disparate crimes turned out to be the opening salvos in a war against the federal government by members of a violent extremist group called the Order, who sought to establish a Whites-only homeland out West.

Their crime spree played out in 1984. Fast forward to 2021. Federal agents and prosecutors who dismantled the Order see troubling echoes of its threat to democracy in the Capitol riot and the growing extremist activity across the country.

“When you see the country as politically and philosophically divided as it is today, that makes it more likely that somebody could take advantage of these times to bring about another revolutionary concept like the Order. We stopped the Order. We did not stop the ideology,” said Wayne F. Manis, the main F.B.I. agent on the case.

Those who tracked the Order say the legacy of the group can be seen in the prominent role that far-right extemist organizations like the Proud Boys and the Oath Keepers played in storming the Capitol on January 6.

“Many of the participants of these groups today come from the same sources as the Order. I think they might be just as committed to totally changing democracy as we know it,” said Gene Wilson, the lead prosecutor, who went on to become a U.S. Magistrate Judge in Seattle before switching to private practice.

The agents who played central roles in disbanding the Order still consider it the most important case of their lives. Given the Order’s “potential for violence and destruction,” said Mr. Manis, no other domestic group posed a similar threat to the United States.

The Order collapsed after Read the rest of this entry »

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iPhone Coronavirus Party In Vietnam

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, May 30, 2021

Who doesn’t like their iPhone?

The world’s most popular smartphone is ubiquitous.

And we Westerners must genuinely appreciate the slave labor used to manufacture the parts that go into the handheld electronic communication device.

And without access to cheap slave labor from our Oriental brothers and sisters in Vietnam, China, and other Southeast Asian nations, we couldn’t enjoy using the electronic devices that so captivate our attention, anesthetizing us to their, and others’ suffering.

The liberal ideal of so-called “free trade” has been perverted.

Rather than being used by our nation as a tool to sow seeds of freedom, and cultivate the fruits of liberty, it’s being abused to enslave others far from our shores in the guise of “profitability” and “progress.”

Aided and abetted by their Wall Street corporate masters and pecuniary overlords, American slavery has been exported as a material good to enrich the few at the expense of the many.

And Republicans scoff at Massachusetts Democratic Senator Elizabeth Warren’s chastizement of JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon and other banksters who enriched themselves, and their corporate coffers, by TENS OF BILLIONS OF DOLLARS by simply continuing to charge overdraft fees to their customers who’d lost their livelihoods, jobs, and income during the the coronavirus pandemic – even though the Federal Reserve not only cut them significant fiscal slack, but also encouraged them to pass such beneficence along to their customers by forgiving such fees.

They did no such thing.

And what will democratic, freedom-loving American beneficence and largesse do in this instance?

My bet is on “Nothing.”

Gotta’ make no’ munny fuh massa’.


Vietnam Detects New Highly Transmissible Coronavirus Variant : Coronavirus Updates

https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2021/05/29/1001590855/vietnam-detects-new-highly-transmissible-coronavirus-variant

Vietnam has detected a new coronavirus variant that is highly transmissible and has features of two other strains.

“Vietnam has uncovered a new COVID-19 variant combining characteristics of the two existing variants first found in India and the U.K.,” Health Minister Nguyen Thanh Long said, according to Reuters. “That the new one is Read the rest of this entry »

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Trump Indictment Imminent

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, May 25, 2021

WashingtonPost.com
National Security

Prosecutor In Trump Criminal Probe Convenes Grand Jury To Hear Evidence, Weigh Potential Charges

by Shayna Jacobs, David Fahrenthold
Tuesday, 25 May 2021

NEW YORK — Manhattan’s district attorney has convened the grand jury that is expected to decide whether to indict former president Donald Trump, other executives at his company or the business itself, should prosecutors present the panel with criminal charges, according to two people familiar with the development.

The panel was convened recently and will sit three days a week for six months. It is likely to hear several matters — not just the Trump case ­— during its term, which is longer than a traditional New York state grand-jury assignment, these people said. Like others, they spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss an ongoing investigation. Generally, special grand juries such as this are convened to participate in long-term matters rather than to hear evidence of crimes charged routinely.

The move indicates that District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr.’s investigation of the former president and his business has reached an advanced stage after more than two years. It suggests, too, that Vance thinks he has found evidence of a crime — if not by Trump, by someone potentially close to him or by his company.

Vance’s investigation is expansive, according to people familiar with the probe and public disclosures made during related litigation. His investigators are scrutinizing Trump’s business practices before he was President, including whether the value of specific properties in the Trump Organization’s real estate portfolio were manipulated in a way that defrauded banks and insurance companies, and if any tax benefits were obtained illegally through unscrupulous asset valuation.

The District Attorney also is examining Read the rest of this entry »

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A Radicalized Supreme Court

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 24, 2021

Democratic senators say if the Supreme Court strikes a blow against Roe v. Wade by upholding a Mississippi abortion law, it will fuel an effort to add justices to the court or otherwise reform it.

The Supreme Court’s conservative majority this week agreed to hear the Mississippi case, which could dramatically narrow abortion rights by allowing states to make it illegal to get an abortion after 15 weeks of pregnancy.

“It will inevitably fuel and drive an effort to expand the Supreme Court if this activist majority betrays fundamental constitutional principles,” said Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee.

“It’s already driving that movement,” he added.

Senator Blumenthal said it doesn’t mean that a Congress led by Democrats would immediately be able to add justices to the court, but he suggested it would add momentum to reform efforts at a minimum.

“Chipping away at Roe v. Wade will precipitate a seismic movement to reform the Supreme Court. It may not be expanding the Supreme Court, it may be making changes to its jurisdiction, or requiring a certain numbers of votes to strike down certain past precedents,” he said.

No one knows for sure when the Supreme Court will hand down its decision on the Mississippi abortion law, but it is widely expected to hear arguments after it convenes in October. That could set up a decision next year.

Rhode Island Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D), another member of the Judiciary Committee, said the court’s review of the Mississippi law raises serious concerns.

“It really enlivens the concerns that we have about the extent to which right-wing billionaire money has influenced the makeup of the court and may even be pulling strings at the court,” he said.

“We’ve got a whole array of options we’re looking at in the courts committee,” Senator Whitehouse said of the Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States, which President Biden established by executive order in April.

Senator Whitehouse said even if Read the rest of this entry »

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In Praise of Natural Black Women

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, May 21, 2021

“Take It Off” – track 1 on his 1987 album “High Priest” – is a song sung by a White man (Alex Chilton) praising the beauty of a natural Black woman.

If you’ve given any attention to some of recent videos by Black female artists like Megan Thee Stallion, Cardi B, Doja Cat, Nicki Minaj, Armani Caesar, Bbymutha, et al, you’ll notice that (obviously fake) long, pointy fingernails are all the rage, as are fake eyelashes, and all the stuff Alex Chilton sings about in his 1987 version of the song… including Read the rest of this entry »

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Electric Automobiles: Putting The Naysayers To Rest

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, May 17, 2021

A friend in Alabama, whom is the quintessential example of a Trump supporter – a White, poorly-educated, hard-shell, far right-wing, Christian Baptist Evangelical RINO – recently sent this to me.

I have no idea where he found it – I didn’t ask, and he didn’t say – though I rather suspect that, more likely than not, he found it on Facebook somewhere. (And indeed, that is the case.) So I can’t, and won’t attempt, to vouch for the claims made in the accompanying description, which is, as it’s read, but an oblique, limp, halfhearted, milquetoast denunciation of renewable energy and Electric Vehicles – and a phenomenally poor one, at that.


“This is Read the rest of this entry »

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Israeli Racism: Calling a Spade, a Spade

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, May 13, 2021

In every story you read about the matter, simply substitute the word “White” for Israel/Israelis, and substitute the word “Black” for Palestine/Palestinians.

It’ll become much more clear.

The scenario in Gaza with the Israelis attacking their own residents, is frankly, a Jewish version of “Jim Crow” laws in America which prevented Blacks from being considered FULL citizens with an EQUAL RIGHT to the land.

Just you think about it.

What if White Americans relegated and segregated Blacks to live in a very tiny, certain area of this land – like, being required to live in Mississippi, and being denied the right to live anywhere else?

Benjamin Netanyahu, Israeli Prime Minister, leader of the far-right Likud party

That’s what Israelis are doing to Palestinians.

“As leader of the right-wing Likud party which has dominated Israel’s national parliamentary government, the 120-member Knesset, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has had a record-breaking uninterrupted 12-year tenure.

“The “left-extreme left” government Netanyahu warns of (adding that it will not survive for more than a day) will include (if it will actually be formed) three right-wing parties (Yamina, New Hope, and Yisrael Beytenu), all three of which consist of both conservative and liberal elements, which together command 20 Knesset seats. It will include two centrist parties, with a slight inclination to the Right (Yesh Atid and Blue and White), and two left-wing parties – the Labor Party and Meretz – neither of which would be counted as “extreme left” anywhere in the democratic world (well, Donald Trump excluded). Yes, and it, too, will require Arab support from the outside.

“As long as Netanyahu remains an actor in Israeli politics, no one can form a government without some form of Arab support – and that, in my opinion, is one of the few positive results from the current situation. The Arabs constitute around 20% of the citizens of Israel, and with all the necessary precautions, not letting them play some sort of role in Israel’s government system is antidemocratic.”

–– “Netanyahu’s dream of right-wing government may not happen – opinion,” by Susan Hattis Rolef; April 25, 2021 20:44, The Jerusalem Post

“​​Yamina chairman Naftali Bennett said on Monday that he told Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu that his Likud party can count on his faction’s vote to form a right-wing government.

“The two met at the Prime Minister’s Office in Jerusalem shortly after Bennett’s statement. A joint statement said they agreed negotiation teams would continue talks.

“As you may already know, I could’ve already been a prime minister by now,” Bennett said on the matter on Monday. “But, my main objective is to thwart a fifth election round,” he added.”

–– “Bennett Says Ready to Join Right-wing Government With Netanyahu’s Likud,” by Jonathan Lis; April 12, 2021, Haaretz

https://www.npr.org/2021/05/05/993933467/netanyahu-opponent-yair-lapid-given-4-weeks-to-form-new-government-in-israel

And then, imagine if White Americans regularly attacked and bombed those segregated Black Americans.

That’s what Israelis are doing to Palestinians.

Reckon what Read the rest of this entry »

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The “Gig” Economy is A Rigged Economy

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, May 13, 2021

“If I don’t have gas, I don’t work,” said Ronald Ross, 47, a DoorDash driver in Atlanta, as he fueled up his Chevy sedan.

Asked about government requests to avoid hoarding, he said:
“Forget that. It’s first come first serve. People have to look out for themselves. As long as they’re peaceful and all.”

https://www.reuters.com/business/energy/panicked-drivers-southeast-us-swarm-pumps-ignore-pleas-stop-hoarding-2021-05-12/


I ordered pizza recently from Little Caesars – they use DoorDash. They don’t have their own delivery driver employees like most other pizza companies do – even small ones. And unlike other standard traditional transactions in which one pays the vendor for their product, in the DoorDash model, you pay them EVERYTHING. The merchant does not bill.

DoorDash charged very handsomely for the service (various “fees” and such), and their total was about $10 – almost ½ the pizza price – most of which ($9) went to them.

There was a space for a tip. I purposely left it blank because Read the rest of this entry »

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Insurrectionist Writes Jailhouse Letter

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 12, 2021

In Exclusive Jailhouse Letter, Capitol Riot Defendant Explains Motives, Remains Boastful

The material obtained by ProPublica sheds light on the radicalization of a January 6 defendant whom prosecutors have characterized as a “serious danger … not only to his family and Congress, but to the entire system of justice.”

by Joshua Kaplan and Joaquin Sapien
May 11, 12:30 p.m. EDT

https://www.propublica.org/article/in-exclusive-jailhouse-letter-capital-riot-defendant-explains-motives-remains-boastful

In a letter sent from behind bars, a key defendant in the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol said he and fellow inmates have bonded in jail, and boasted that those attacking the building could have overthrown the government if they had wanted.

The letter is signed “the 1/6ers” and expresses no remorse for the assault on the Capitol, in which five people died. While no names appeared on it, ProPublica was able to determine, through interviews with his family and a review of his correspondence from jail, that it was penned by Guy Reffitt, a member of the Three Percenter right-wing militant group accused of participating in the riot. The letter said the inmates arrested for their role in the attack regularly recite the Pledge of Allegiance inside the Washington, D.C. jail and sing the national anthem “all in unison, loud and proud most everyday.”

“January 6th was nothing short of a satirical way to overthrow a government,” said the letter, written by hand on lined yellow paper. “If overthrow was the quest, it would have no doubt been overthrown.”

The letter sent to ProPublica is believed to be one of the first public statements from a January 6 rioter currently in detention. ProPublica also obtained text messages with Reffitt’s family and was able to ask a few questions of him via text from the D.C. Jail, with his wife, Nicole Reffitt, acting as a relay. Guy Reffitt declined to participate in a fuller interview on the advice of his lawyer, his wife said.

Reffitt faces a variety of charges, including obstructing an official proceeding, which carries a maximum sentence of 20 years. He is awaiting trial and has pleaded not guilty. In text messages he sent last month to his wife, Reffitt said he was resigning from the Texas Three Percenters.

An excerpt of a letter witten by Guy Reffitt, sent to ProPublica from jail.

Last week, Reffitt told ProPublica via his wife that more than 30 people arrested in connection with the Jan. 6 attack had discussed the letter while in custody. He said that the “1/6ers” are “not organized” and that there are “no leaders,” just “people chatting about things” because they are “stuck here together.”

Reffitt said that the suspects communicate with one another with what are known as “kites,” jailhouse slang for messages passed from cell to cell. They are also able to socialize during the two hours a day they’re let out of their cells. The Department of Justice declined to comment.

Those detained in connection with the Capitol siege have been treated by D.C. officials as “maximum security” prisoners and kept in restrictive housing, according to media reports. Three defendants that Nicole Reffitt said she understood to be parties to the letter denied any knowledge of it when contacted by ProPublica. One of them said he became friends with Guy Reffitt inside the D.C. Jail, but had been moved to another unit by the time the letter was penned.

Nicole Reffitt said she helped her husband write the letter and solicit support through phone calls and a jailhouse messaging app inmates are allowed to use periodically to communicate with the outside world. The D.C. Jail has held dozens of defendants in connection with the riot, on charges ranging from obstructing an official proceeding to assaulting a police officer with a dangerous weapon.

The letter counters the notion that Read the rest of this entry »

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Mother’s Day Mass Shootings 2021: It’s Mourning In America

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, May 9, 2021

The second Sunday in May in the United States is always Mother’s Day. This year – 2021 – it’s on the 9th of May.

Typically, Mother’s Day is a special day in the nation set aside to honor mothers nationwide.

Anna Jarvis, daughter of Ann Reeves Jarvis, remained a childless spinster her entire life, initiated the idea of Mother’s Day in 1908, and in 1914, Mother’s Day became an official U.S. holiday.

By about 1920, however, Anna became disgusted with what she perceived that Mother’s Day had become – an commercialized business opportunity for florists, card companies, and other merchandisers – and denounced the day, and urged others to stop buying Mother’s Day flowers, cards, and candies.

But one thing Anna Javis never saw coming, was mass shootings across the nation around, or on, Mother’s Day.

Doubtless, she would have spoken out about, and condemned that, as well.

While this is being written, Read the rest of this entry »

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Research: 550,000+ Firearm-Related Hospitalizations 2000-2016

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 5, 2021

States in the Deep South lead the nation in average per capita firearm-related hospitalizations.

Average Firearm Injury Hospitalization Rate per 100,000, 2000–2016

1.) Louisiana – 24
2.) Tennessee – 18
3.) Alabama – 16
4.) Missouri – 16
5.) Maryland – 16
6.) Michigan – 14
7.) Illinois – 13
8.) North Carolina – 13
9.) South Carolina – 13
10.) Mississippi – 13
11.) Arizona – 13
12.) Arkansas – 12
13.) Delaware – 12
14.) Pennsylvania – 12
15.) Nevada – 12
16.) California – 12
17.) Oklahoma – 11
18.) Texas – 10
19.) Kansas – 10
20.) Indiana – 10
21.) Ohio – 10
22.) Kentucky – 9
23.) Virginia – 8

The national average is 10.

Ongoing and recently updated research by the RAND Corporation – a nonprofit, nonpartisan, research organization working in the public interest to develop solutions to public policy challenges to improve communities nationally, and worldwide by making them healthier, and more prosperous, safer, and more secure – showed that nationally:

“In 2018, 39,740 individuals in the United States were killed by firearms, making firearm violence the second leading cause of injury death in the United States (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [CDC], undated).

“As part of the Gun Policy in America initiative, RAND researchers developed a longitudinal database of state-level estimates of inpatient hospitalizations for firearm injury between 2000 and 2016. This database was first released in 2021 and is free to the public.

RAND researcher Dr. Andrew Morral, PhD who is the Senior Behavioral Scientist, and Director of the National Collaborative on Gun Violence Research there, tweeted recently (April 28) that:

“Why are firearm hospitalizations not correlated with gun ownership in observed state hospitalization data or our estimates? Because they chiefly result from criminal assaults (vs. suicides) and these are not correlated with household gun ownership.”

This type of research is a phenomenally difficult proposition, and highly complicated undertaking, and the entirety of the paper is spent detailing and explaining their methodology, and sources, because not every state provides information to, or participates in HCUP, the Healthcare Cost and Utilization Project.

As well, data had to be compared and cross-referenced with other similarly related databases, such as the FBI’s annual UCR – Uniform Crime Report.

And then, they get into the math – the statistical analysis – and explain the formulae used, which then has to be checked with other external mathematical models to determine, and ensure a high level of accuracy. In short, this is not “relaxing reading” by any stretch of the imagination – it is highly technical explanations of phenomenally difficult work, which only indirectly points to the significance of their findings.

HCUP is the Nation’s most comprehensive source of hospital care data, including information on in-patient stays, ambulatory surgery and services visits, and emergency department encounters. HCUP enables Read the rest of this entry »

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Gun Control Now A Matter Of National Security

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Why Gun Control Is Now a Matter of National Security

Opinion
By Steven Simon, Jonathan Stevenson
04/22/2021 06:30 PM EDT
https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/04/22/why-gun-control-is-now-a-matter-of-national-security-484323

Steven Simon, an International Relations Professor at Colby College, served on the National Security Council during the Clinton and Obama administrations, including as Senior Director for Counterterrorism.

Jonathan Stevenson, a Senior Fellow at the International Institute for Strategic Studies and Managing Editor of Survival, served on the National Security Council as Director for Political-Military Affairs, Middle East and North Africa, from 2011 to 2013.

For all the tragic mass shooting headlines this year, the American gun control debate seems permanently stuck. Last week, nine people were killed by AR-15 fire in Indianapolis; before that, 10 died in Boulder, and eight in Atlanta. Despite the anguish over the past month — and despite a push by President Joe Biden — Congress looks unlikely to take any immediate action.

We share Biden’s view that the level of U.S. gun violence is a “national embarrassment.” But as National Security Council veterans who have specialized in counterterrorism — with direct experience involving far-right American terrorism, burgeoning jihadism, and Northern Irish extremism in the 1990s — we also see a new threat rising, one that has the potential to change the urgency of the debate: the growing, and heavily armed, American militia movement, which made a show of force on January 6.

Armed demonstrators protest outside of the Michigan State Capitol on January 17, 2021 in Lansing. – Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Increasingly, as militias acquire and stockpile weapons, they’re turning guns from a public-health concern into a threat to national security. And it’s possible that if proponents of reform — including advocacy groups, congressional leaders and Biden — began addressing it that way, they’d have a chance of energizing the debate against the National Rifle Association and its allies. Indeed, the shock of the insurrection has increased the political burdens of an NRA in internal disarray and offered a new perspective on the need for significant gun control legislation.

As America learned on January 6, anti-government militia groups are more than willing to jump walls, break doors and disrupt the underpinnings of our democracy. These groups, with transnational ties, also enjoy easy access to high-power, high-capacity, small-caliber semiautomatic weapons—many of which can be converted to fully automatic. The concern isn’t that these weapons will somehow enable militias to challenge the U.S. military on the battlefield, which they certainly will not. It is that they make mass casualty attacks against political or cultural adversaries both easy to carry out, and easy to frame as inspirational events of the kind that mobilize insurrection.

The executive orders Biden issued earlier this month imposing restrictions on gun kits and devices that turn pistols into rifles are marginal safeguards and rather thin gruel overall. But his call for reviving the federal ban on assault weapons is more promising and an acknowledgment that serious action is required. An important additional measure would be more rigorous required background checks. At least one key Republican senator, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, has expressed openness to working with Biden on a gun bill.

Generating bipartisan consensus for an effective crackdown on firearms will always be difficult. While gun control is now unlikely to lose existing supporters, it is also unlikely to win many new ones. But reframing the issue as a national security imperative could galvanize passive backers now focused by the assault on the Capitol on maintaining political stability in the United States. A plausible objective would be to Read the rest of this entry »

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FBI Data: Marijuana Arrests STILL Number 1 Nationally

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, May 4, 2021

The Federal Bureau of Investigation annually publishes a UCR, or Uniform Crime Report. It’s a statistical overview of crime and arrests in the United States compiled from reports from the Local, State and Federal Law Enforcement Agencies. Because of the vast volume of data, it takes quite a bit of time and concerted effort to organize the data into comprehensible form. Typically, such reports are at least a year behind. For example, the most recent year for which complete UCR data is available is 2019.

“The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program counts one arrest for each separate instance in which a person is arrested, cited, or summoned for an offense. The UCR Program collects arrest data on 28 offenses, as described in Offense Definitions.

Nationwide, law enforcement made an estimated 10,085,207 arrests in 2019. Of these arrests, 495,871 were for violent crimes, and 1,074,367 were for property crimes.

The highest number of arrests were for drug abuse violations (estimated at 1,558,862 arrests), driving under the influence (estimated at 1,024,508), and larceny-theft (estimated at 813,073).

– from “Crime in the United States, 2019” the FBI’s annual Uniform Crime Report

Other similarly-related substance misuse/abuse arrests, and their figures are Read the rest of this entry »

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Didn’t Feel The Bern? It Was Because Of Hillary.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, May 1, 2021

Donna Brazile, publicity photo

There are probably plenty of reasons to dislike Donna Brazile, the twice-former interim DNC Chair – not the least of which was the discovery that, following a WikiLeaks email dump, she’d been sharing debate questions with Hillary, and subsequent to a second release of the tranche, she resigned in shame from her position at CNN as a political commentator/pundit.

Perhaps she was trying to redeem herself, or, maybe she was trying to hold a light illuminating the damning evidence of HRC’s unethical behavior and corruption (though not illegal), or maybe she was hoping to drive another nail into Hillary’s political coffin, or “throw some others under the bus,” and even if it was a cathartic political “kiss and tell,” her motivation for what she wrote is not the question.

It is ~what~ she wrote in her book “Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House” that tells the story.

She discovered that because of the party’s fiscal indebtedness, a backroom deal had been struck with Hillary and the DNC in August 2015, just Read the rest of this entry »

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At Least 50 Reasons Why Georgia SB202 Is A Bad Bill

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, April 29, 2021

FIFTY REASONS WHY GEORGIA SB 202 IS A BAD BILL

SB 202 Linked Here For Citations

HYPERCRIMINALIZATION: Georgia’s new law codifies mass disenfranchisement and intimidation and further expands criminalization policy in the voting process.1.Mass Challenges:Codifies that a single person can challenge the voter registration of an unlimited # of voters at once, resulting in that voter being purged. (lines 575576)

1. Mass Challenges: Codifies that a single person can challenge the voter registration of an unlimited # of voters at once, resulting in that voter being purged. (lines 575576)

2. Mass Challenges: Codifies that a single person can challenge the rights of an unlimited # of voters to cast their ballot in the upcoming election. 364k Georgians were frivolously challenged in the runoffs. In just 29 counties, 15,000 Black voters, 2,000 Hispanic voters, and 1500 AAPI voters were challenged.(lines 622623)

Georgia’s nickname is the “Peach State,” and it is one of the 13 original colonies.

3. Mass Challenges: Mandates counties hold mass challenge hearings that challenged voter must show up towithin 10 days of frivolous challenge. (line 581)

4. Linewarming/Criminalization: Makes it a crime for volunteers or groups to hand water or snacks to voters in line. (lines 18731875)

5. Linewarming/Criminalization: Makes it a crime for *voters* in line to accept water or snacks from a volunteer or group. Bill later amended to allow an “unattended receptacle” near line. (lines 18731875, lines 18871889)

6. Criminalization: Creates a new misdemeanor for voters if the voter allows someone other than those authorized under state/federal law to see them marking their ballot at home. (lines 1339, 13471349)

7. Criminalization: Creates a new felony for anyone that witnesses someone else mark their *absentee* ballot at home unless they are providing legally authorized assistance or are a child. (lines 24492454)

8. Criminalization: Creates a new misdemeanor for handling a completed application for anyone not authorized by law to assist voter. (lines 979981)

9. Criminalization: Adds new misdemeanor for photographing your own *absentee* ballot or someone else’s. (expanding existing law to ensure VBM also criminalized) (line 2460)

10. Intimidation: Creates new fraud hotline that will accept “anonymous tips” and AG can launch investigations or prosecute within 3 days. (lines 171178)

POWER GRABS/CONSOLIDATION OF ELECTION AUTHORITY: Georgia’s new law removes significant power from the Secretary of State and gives the GOPled, gerrymandered state legislature majority control of the State Election Board.

11. Removes SOS Power: Removes the Secretary of State as Chair of the State Election Board (line 185).

12. State Legislature Controls SEB: Grants state legislature power to appoint new chair of State Election Board (SEB). Meaning state legislature will choose 3 out of 5 State Election Board members going forward, a majority. (lines 185 189)

13. Removes SOS Power: Removes the SOS as a voting member of the State Election Board (lines 252253).

14. Removes SOS Power: Bill amended at last second to remove SOS power to appoint members of performance review board. (lines 500503, line 521, line 540 || vs. lines 499502, line 520, line 540 of bill as passed SEI committee: LC280338S)

15. Removes SOS Power: Requires SOS provide all necessary support/assistance to SEB for county takeovers at the sole discretion of SEB (lines 270281).

16. Removes SOS Power: Bans SOS/counties from proactively sending vote by mail applications without a request. (lines 966970)

17. Legislative Power: Allows state legislature to overrule any emergency election rule (lines 24912494)

COUNTY ELECTION BOARD TAKEOVERS: Georgia’s new law removes judicial oversight from the county intervention process and grants a GOPcontrolled State Election Board the power to replace county BOEs and local elections officials that have significant voter access and election certification responsibilities.

18. No Judicial Oversight: Removes judicial oversight from county takeover process. Georgia already had a process to deal with lowperforming counties, but it required judicial oversight of the State Election Board (SEB). The new process replaces judicial oversight with opaque investigation/takeover powers. (See Georgia Code § 21232 for previous process) Read the rest of this entry »

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What is socialism?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

Socialism is when the government controls the means, and the method, of production.

In essence, socialism is a “government factory.”

But let’s examine some things that could be claimed are “socialist.”

Money.

The coinage and currency in your pocket is made by the United States government upon government-owned machines – stamping mills, and presses, with government-owned metals, government-owned paper, and government-owned inks.

But it’s not socialist.

Why not?

Because Read the rest of this entry »

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Banana Republicans Go Off Half-Cocked

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, April 28, 2021

The idiom to “go off half-cocked” came from incidents in which a flintlock or matchlock gun would fire prematurely, before the trigger was pulled.

As used in modern context, it means:

• to take a premature or ill-considered action; to act too soon, prematurely, or without reflection;

• to do or say something without preparing for, or thinking about it;

• to go into action too early, or without thinking.

That certainly seems to be the case with several Banana Republicans recently. Banana Republicans lead Banana Republics, right?

An article published last week by the notoriously unreliable British tabloid “The Daily Mail” – which is infamous for habitually and recklessly publishing sensationalistically inaccurate fear-mongering stories – stated a deliberate lie which falsely claimed that President Joe Biden’s climate proposals would deliberately limit Americans’ red meat consumption.

Shortly after that scurrilously false story was published, numerous Read the rest of this entry »

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Topsy Turvy America

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, April 26, 2021

In America, you can get arrested for drinking a beer in public.

In Germany, one can legally walk around in public while drinking a beer. To do so is neither illegal, immoral, or unethical.

Of course, illegality, immorality, and unethical behavior are three entirely separate, and unique things. Suffice to say, they’re not the same.

In America, one cannot walk around in public while drinking a beer, or any other alcohol-containing beverage. In many, if not most, places, it’s illegal to do so – save, perhaps, for a few specially-designated areas, or upon certain occasions in those areas.

For example, it’s not uncommon to see pictures, or read news stories of college-aged students who can otherwise legally consume alcoholic beverages (being aged 21, or older), and even adults, who while enjoying almost any public beach in America, are accosted by local law enforcement authorities who either confiscate, or demand that the beer owner(s) destroy those ice-cold beverages by pouring them out, and sometimes, even arrest them, haul them off to jail, where they’re fingerprinted, photographed, and incarcerated, however briefly, as if they’re genuine threats to society, or had committed some grievously atrocious felony.

Of course, it almost goes without saying, that if anyone, anywhere in America was walking around in their local Wal-Mart, shopping while drinking a beer, the police would be called to the scene, and doubtlessly, the shopper/drinker would be arrested, and the story of it published on the worldwide web of the Internet for all the world to see.

Typically, in most all such instances, those individuals would be violating so-called “open container” laws, which forbid the public consumption of alcoholic beverages.

Yet interestingly enough, morbidly obese people can walk around in public eating hot dogs, doughnuts, and junk foods of seemingly innumerable variety and type, wash it all down with gallons of soda pop, and it’s not illegal to watch them commit their slow suicide in public, and no one dares think about calling the cops on them.

While it might seem that Read the rest of this entry »

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Telling Tall Tales: Shared Mythology in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, April 25, 2021

Today I happened upon a description of a beer made by Cigar City Brewing of Tampa, FL – Double Barrel-aged Hunahpu’s – which is a 2016 release of an Imperial Stout, aged in rum barrels & apple brandy barrels and blended together.

As rated and ranked by the crowd-sourced beer enthusiast’s website BeerAdvocate, where reviewers rate beers according to various measures of quality, not upon “popularity” based upon sales volume, per se, Hunahpu’s Imperial Stout was graded 100, which is a perfect score, and was ranked 2nd within the category of Imperial Stouts, had a 3rd overall weighted rank, while the website’s contributors gave it an overall rating of 4.78 out of 5 truncated mean for all beers on the site. Its flavor notes read “Stout aged on Peruvian cacao nibs, ancho and pasilla chiles, cinnamon and Madagascar vanilla beans aged in apple brandy and rum barrels before being blended together.”

After having read the review notes, I navigated over to the Cigar City Brewing site to see the brewery’s page for the brew, to see what they said about it, and read that they describe it as being:

“Extremely dark in color with a brown head with notes of big notes of chocolate and espresso, moderate notes of vanilla and cinnamon and mild notes of tobacco and chilis. Flavor opens with a big blast of chocolate and moderate espresso with notes of dark toffee and interjecting notes of vanilla with lingering hints of cinnamon and tobacco and chili notes with a mild Scoville heat in the finish. Extensive aging in both rum and apple brandy barrels adds candied apple, allspice, vanilla and oaky tannic qualities to this rare and complex stout.”

I also found the following about the beer’s curious name:

Did you know?

In Mayan mythology, Hun Hunahpu was the father of the Mayan hero twins Hunahpu and Xbalanque. Hun Hunahpu, along with his brother Vucub Hunahpu, was tricked by the Dark Lords of the underworld and slain. Hun Hunahpu’s corpse morphed into a cacao tree, his head becoming a cacao pod, which in typically awesome mythology fashion, spit upon the hand of a young maiden named Xquic who promptly became pregnant with the hero twins. The twins would ultimately grow up to avenge their father and uncle and defeat the Dark Lords and ascend the heavens to become the moon and sun.

That’s quite a tale, to be certain, and as I read it, the preposterous absurdity of it all was reminiscent of another well-known fairy tale told by observant Jews, Christians, and Muslims alike.

Artist’s depiction of the Hebrew exodus

That tall tale is of Moses, regarded as Read the rest of this entry »

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Missouri Republican Lawmaker Ousted For Child Sex Abuse Of Adult Daughters

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, April 24, 2021

Once again, Banana Republicans are caught with their pants down.


ajc.com

Republican Missouri Lawmaker Expelled Over Child Sex Abuse Charges By Adult Daughters

Rick Roeber expelled after GOP House-led investigation

By Tim Darnell, Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Saturday, 24 April 2021

The Missouri House of Representatives voted Wednesday to expel a suburban Kansas City lawmaker over allegations he sexually abused two of his children years ago.

By an almost-unanimous vote, the GOP-led House expelled Rick Roeber, a Republican who was elected in November to represent the Lee’s Summit community.

Republican child sex abuser Rick Roeber of Missouri State House

The vote came after an ethics committee report on Monday that formally accused Roeber of sexually abusing two of his now-adult children when they were 5 and 9. The committee found their allegations credible.

The expulsion was the first time the Missouri House had expelled a member in more than 150 years.

No one opposed Roeber’s ouster, though one lawmaker voted “present” to sidestep taking a position.

“It is unacceptable what he has done to the home life of these children,” GOP House Speaker Rob Vescovo said, according to The Associated Press, during a speech from the chamber floor. “And I find him in the worst capacity to represent the people, and more specifically represent the children, of the 34th District or the children of the state of Missouri.”

Roeber previously told the committee that he didn’t sexually abuse his children.

Several of Roeber’s children testified to House investigators this year he also frequently beat them with a belt, choked them and once drowned a litter of puppies.

One child who said Roeber was sexually abusive told investigators that Read the rest of this entry »

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On The Dole: Marjorie Taylor Greene Profits From Low-Income Federal Subsidy Program

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, April 24, 2021

Is Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Green Pretending?

Cue Eric Clapton’s 1989 hit “Pretending.”

Clay Bennett is a native Alabamian, and Pulitzer prize-winning, long-time political cartoonist for the Chattanooga Times-Free Press.

While Marjorie Taylor Greene has claimed business success credentials as a candidate for Georgia’s 14th Congressional District – while spouting the bizarre lies and not-even-specious rhetoric as part of the QAnon conspiracy – what she has NOT said is that Federal subsidy of low-income housing, and Federal tax credits associated with them, has played a significant role in that “success.”

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution recently published an investigative article about Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, the Republican QAnon conspiracy theory supporter who moved her campaign headquarters from the state’s 6th to the 14th Congressional District exclusively in order to campaign for the U.S. House of Representatives. The Constitution does not require a Member of Congress to reside in the district they represent, only the state.

The 14th CD is located in the state’s uppermost northwest corner, bordering Alabama and Tennessee, a portion of which is considered part of the Chattanooga, TN Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Located slightly north of the state’s capitol city, from 1992-2018, GA’s 6th CD has, until recently, been a largely Republican-dominated suburb of the Atlanta MSA which has produced the likes of Newt Gingrich, Johnny Isakson, and former Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price.

Georgia’s 14th CD includes Dalton, which has long been known for the numerous carpet and floor covering firms which supply a significant portion of all carpet sold domestically and internationally, and with at least 150 factories, is colloquially known as the “Carpet Capitol of the World.”

It is in that region that Marjorie Taylor Greene projected herself to district 14 voters not as a “carpetbagger,” nor as a “scalawag” – even though she is an opportunist Republican profiteering from Federal poverty programs – but as a business owner/entrepreneur alongside her spouse, Perry.

The term “carpetbagger” refers to:

“a traveler who arrives in a new region with only a satchel (or carpetbag) of possessions, and who attempts to profit from or gain control over his new surroundings, often against the will or consent of the original inhabitants.”

While scalawag refers to:

“White southerners who, for various reasons, saw more of an advantage in backing the policies of Reconstruction than in opposing them.”

And in an ironic video she recently shared with her supporters, she attempted to cast aspersions upon, and belittle fellow Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a Democrat from New York’s 14th CD with whom she indicated that she’d spoken, and challenged her to a debate on her “Green New Deal” saying that “she just has a government job” – the same type job Greene has.

2. As a business woman in the construction industry, I’ve spent the last two decades alongside my husband, Perry, building our company and creating in jobs. The politicians in DC and really at all levels of government have let us down.”

The top of her campaign platform was Read the rest of this entry »

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TN GOP Governor Bill Lee Expected To Sign “Show Us Your Genitals” Law

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, April 23, 2021

50th Tennessee Governor Bill Lee (R)

It makes me wonder… why are Banana Republicans so interested in others’ genitals – especially CHILDREN’S GENITALS?

Sounds VERY creepy to me.

In fact, it sounds very much like something a pedophile would do, or support.

What’s the possibility, eh?

Now, I’m not suggesting that the bill’s authors are pedophiles, but “if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck,” it’s probably a cow… right?

Maybe a pedophile influenced, or wrote the bill, eh?

But then, why are Tennessee’s GOP legislators listening to pedophiles, eh?

Of couse, this sounds very much like a remedy in search of a problem, rather than vice versa. Seriously. I mean, how “bad” a problem is the so-called “problem” it purports to remedy?

I’ve yet to read any news items about any such matters. You know… something like “Man Shoots Trangendered Victim In Public Toilet,” or “Teacher Shoots Transgendered Teen In Lockerroom” something else patently and absurdly similar. After all, we’re assaulted daily, 24/7 with Read the rest of this entry »

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Prediction: South Dakota GOP Governor Kristi Noem Will Report COVID-19 Infection Soon

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, April 22, 2021

Why?

She and Ted Nugent were snuggling together on the same aircraft for several hours while Ted was COVID-19 positive.

The backstory:

The once-and-former rocker, “Jailbait” singer/songwriter, and Motor City Moron Ted Nugent recently announced that he had become infected with the COVID-19 virus.

LEFT to RIGHT: Donna Mosing, spouse of Greg Mosing; Kristi Noem; Ted Nugent, spouse of Shemane Nugent.

However, a week before he made that announcement, Nugent’s wife Shemane posted a photo on Instagram which cross-posted to Twitter, of them standing with South Dakota Republican Governor Kristi Noem and Republican donor Greg Mosing and his wife, Donna, alongside a private jet aircraft. None of them were wearing any type of protective nose/mouth covering.

She wrote: “Thank you for a great trip with Governor Kristi Noem, on Rockstar One (think Air Force One!).”

https://www.instagram.com/p/CNoaOJ3MyFj/

Publicly available data for the aircraft – N131GM – shows that Read the rest of this entry »

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Birmingham, Alabama Mayor Randall Woodfin Pardons 15,000 Cannabis Offenders On 420

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Birmingham, Alabama Mayor Randall Woodfin has used the executive authority of the mayor’s office to issue blanket pardons for all misdemeanor marijuana-related offenses issued by the city from 1990-2020.

His actions were on April 20th, a day adopted by cannabis advocates as their celebratory day, and he Tweeted that,

“Today, I issued a pardon of 15,000 people convicted of marijuana possession in Birmingham between 1990-2020. These pardons are Read the rest of this entry »

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What Is Inflation?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, April 20, 2021

An inflation is defined as when prices in general go up. Not every price, and not each price the same amount, but a general rise in prices is all that the word “inflation” means. Goods and services, in general, go up in price. Number one.

Number two: Simple. The people who decide on prices are employers – the people who own and operate businesses – ’cause that’s where most goods and services come from. And under a private enterprise system, the individuals who set the prices are the owners, operators, chief executives of corporations. So the first question to understand, first point, is that, if you have a general rise in prices, it’s the business community that’s doing that.

Now, the next question: Why would the business community do it?

Well, the first answer again, is simple – is because it’s profitable. It’s the easiest, quickest, and best way to make more profits – which is to take whatever it is you’re producing, and charge more for each unit of it that you sell. In other words, to raise the price. So in many cases, there’s an inflation because businesses are raising prices to make more profits.

But of course, business Read the rest of this entry »

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Ted Nugent Has COVID-19

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, April 20, 2021

After denying its existence, the washed-up once-upon-a-time rock musician, pedophile, and Motor City Moron

Ted Nugent has announced that he has become infected with COVID-19.

Not COVID 18, COVID 17, COVID 16, COVID 15, but COVID-19.

Perhaps this is Bill & Ted’s Excellent Adventure, v2.0, eh?

Y’know, deep within, I had a feeling that it would only be a very short matter of time before he changed his tune… after becoming infected.

And sure ‘nuff… that’s what happened!

Musician Ted Nugent said yesterday, Monday 19 April 2021, that he tested positive for COVID-19 and had been experiencing intensely severe symptoms, even though he called the pandemic a “hoax” in the recent past.

During a FaceBook Live broadcast yesterday he said, “I was tested positive today. Everybody told me I should not announce this, but can you hear it, I have had flu symptoms for the last 10 days and I thought I was dying. I got the Chinese shit. Just a clusterfuck. I got a stuffed up head, body aches… oh my god, what a pain in the ass. I literally can hardly crawl out of bed, the last few days but I did. I crawled.”

[When faced with stark reality, suddenly, his tune changed. Fascinating.]

He also expressed Read the rest of this entry »

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