Warm Southern Breeze

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Posts Tagged ‘history’

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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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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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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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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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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Former Vice President Walter “Fritz” Mondale Has Died

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, April 19, 2021

Former Vice President Walter F. Mondale, photographed at his Mill District condo on April 30, 2019, in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

In 2007, former-Vice President Walter “Fritz” Mondale (1928-2021) was asked to describe his proudest accomplishment in President Jimmy Carter’s administration.

He said, “We told the truth, we obeyed the law, and we kept the peace. It may not sound like much, but if you’ve got that, you can handle the rest.”

Fritz Mondale died peacefully in his sleep, April 19, 2021, of natural causes, surrounded by family, at his Minneapolis, Minnesota home, aged 93.

President Biden acknowledged Mondale’s passing in remarks made from the White House, and said in part that,

“Through his work as a Senator, he showed me what was possible. He may have been modest and unassuming in manner, but he was unwavering in his pursuit of progress; instrumental in passing laws like the Fair Housing Act to prevent racial discrimination in housing, Title IX to provide more opportunities for women, and laws to protect our environment. There have been few senators, before or since, who commanded such universal respect.

“He not only created a path for himself, he helped others do the same. Walter Mondale was the first presidential nominee of either party to select a woman as his running mate, and I know how pleased he was to be able to see Kamala Harris become Vice President.

“In accepting the Democratic Party’s nomination for President, he described the values he was taught to live by: “to play by the rules; to tell the truth; to obey the law; to care for others; to love our country; to cherish our faith.”

“As a Senator, an Ambassador, a Vice President, and a candidate for President, he lived and spread those values.”

Then-former Georgia Governor Jimmy Carter, LEFT, and Vice Presidential running mate Minnesota Senator Walter Mondale celebrate Democratic primary victories at Mondale campaign headquarters in Minneapolis, Minnesota, on March 13, 1984.

Walter Mondale made history by being the first candidate of any party to name a female as a Vice Presidential running mate.

He chose Read the rest of this entry »

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Quoting Lincoln: Did he REALLY say that?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, March 25, 2021

You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.

That statement is almost always misattributed to Abraham Lincoln, but there is NO EVIDENCE to support any claim that he ever said such a thing.

President Abraham Lincoln, albumen silver print photograph made February 1865 by Alexander Gardner

Think of it as “fake history.”

It is perhaps the most famous of apparently apocryphal remarks which are widely misattributed to the late, former President.

Despite the various citations as being from:
Lincoln’s “Lost Speech” as a Republican candidate for the party’s Presidential nomination at the Bloomington Convention in Bloomington, Illinois on May 29, 1856, or;
On September 8, 1858 in Clinton, Illinois, an account of which was published in “Report in the Bloomington “Pantograph,” September 9, 1858, which is also extant as ‘Speech at Clinton, Illinois, September 8, 1858’ in ‘The Complete Works of Abraham Lincoln, v. 3,’ or;
As being from the 4th Lincoln/Douglas debate September 18, 1858 in Charleston, Illinois – there are NO contemporary accounts or records that substantiate any claim that he ever made any such remark.

The earliest known appearance of any remotely similar statement is found in Read the rest of this entry »

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Guess Which One?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, March 10, 2021

Which one’s which?

Find the M-16 and the AR-15.

And, did you know?

ALL parts are interchangeable on the M-16 and the AR-15.

Every single one of them.

Why is that?

When Eugene Stoner (1922-1997) of the Armalite corporation originally designed the weapon, it was at the behest of the United States Department of Defense which sought a firearm that was lightweight (under 6 pounds) had a high-capacity magazine (30 rounds), and could penetrate BOTH sides of a steel helmet at 500 yards. It was called the AR15, for Armalite Rifle version 15. There had been several previous iterations to the rifle, all of which were intended exclusively for military use.

The .223 caliber round (the bullet, not the shell/casing) had been introduced to market and made available to the civilian market by Remington, which commercially introduced the .222 Remington as a varmint cartridge in 1950 – a round intended for pest control.

Bullets are measured in size, which is called “caliber,” and refers to its diameter/circumference, and weight, which is measured in “grains.” So, a 60 grain bullet would weigh 3.887935 grams.

Sometimes also called “ball ammo,” bullets so described are lead bullets completely covered with metal, also known as FMJ, or Full Metal Jacket. Unlike hollow point bullets – bullets which have a hollowed-out center – ball ammo/FMJ bullets do not expand upon impact. Instead, they penetrate a target and quite possibly even penetrate the object behind the target.

There are also numerous varieties and shapes of ball ammunition which range from “boat tails,” flat nose (sometimes called dum-dum bullets), and ones with truncated cones. Each shape has a specific use, but all are made for one purpose in mind: Penetration.

Though the years, the development of the .223 caliber round, and the Armalite Rifle proceeded. The military was increasingly interested in both.

In 1957, events began to accelerate with development of both. Eugene Stoner had developed a rifle called the AR-10 in response to the Army’s request for a “small-caliber, high-velocity” (SCHV) cartridge – the entire shell casing and round, filled with gunpowder, a primer, and bullet. And that year, the Infantry Board had agreed upon the preliminary specifications, which called for a 6 pound, select-fire .22″ rifle with a conventional stock and a 20 round magazine. The proposed chambering had to penetrate the standard issue steel helmet, body armor, and a .135″ steel plate at 500 yards, while maintaining the trajectory and accuracy of M2 ball from a M1 Garand, and equaling or exceeding the “wounding” ability of the .30 Carbine.

In January 1963, just as the Vietnam “conflict” was simmering slightly below a boil, U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara ordered the AR-15 adopted to replace the M14 which had been the standard issue infantry rifle, and standard issue for all branches of service for several years. His decision was based upon Read the rest of this entry »

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Impeachment v2.0 Day 5: We’re through now. Verdict: Not guilty by reason of insanity or mental defect.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, February 14, 2021

The United States Senate voted largely along party lines Saturday, 13 February 2021 to NOT CONVICT the former President of the United States, Donald J. Trump of the charge of inciting insurrection.

Republican Senator Richard Burr of North Carolina joined Republican Senators Mitt Romney of Utah, Bill Cassidy of Louisiana, Susan Collins of Maine, Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Ben Sasse of Nebraska, and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, and all 50 Democrats in voting GUILTY to convict. But, 57 votes was 10 shy of the 2/3 required by the Constitution in order to convict.

The Senate Minority Leader Moscow Mitch McConnell had the temerity, audacity and unmitigated gall to actually give a brief speech on the Senate floor following his “NOT GUILTY” vote for Donald J. “Loser” Trump, which follows at the conclusion of this entry.

Feb 13 59 (57-43) Not Guilty Guilty or Not Guilty H.Res. 24

The Roll Call vote by member may be found here:
https://www.cop.senate.gov/legislative/LIS/roll_call_lists/roll_call_vote_cfm.cfm?congress=117&session=1&vote=00059

This

Valentine’s Day “We love you Donald” edition

is brought to you by:

Senate Minority Leader “Moscow Mitch” McConnell who wrote email to his Senate minions saying,

“Colleagues, as I have said for some time, today’s vote is a vote of conscience and I know we will all treat it as such. I have been asked directly by a number of you how I intend to vote, so thought it right to make that known prior to the final vote. While a close call, I am persuaded that impeachments are a tool primarily of removal and we therefore lack jurisdiction. The Constitution makes perfectly clear that Presidential criminal misconduct while in office can be prosecuted after the President has left office, which in my view alleviates the otherwise troubling ‘January exception’ argument raised by the House.

“Given these conclusions, I will vote to acquit.

“Mitch”

Yeah… that Kentucky heathen not only voted to acquit the POS45, aka Liar in Chief, leader of the Cult of Trump, but passed the buck.

Not guilty, not guilty 2x, guilty. Alcee Hastings was impeached and found guilty of on charges of perjury and conspiring to solicit a bribe, and was removed from office as a Federal judge in 1989. He’s been a United States Representative for Florida’s 20th Congressional District since 1993.

Here’s the thing, though: For a man who claims to have an interest in historicity for the purpose of the Senate, he is DEAD WRONG about his opinion that, as he writes, “I am persuaded that impeachments are a tool primarily of removal…”

  As a matter of history, there has been of late at least a moderate amount of discussion and news made about an historical matter involving circumstances very similar to this one (in which the impeached individual is no longer in office), insofar as the two individuals impeached had ALREADY been resigned from, or otherwise out of office when their impeachment occurred.

Concerning the historical record, the FIRST impeached Federal official was Read the rest of this entry »

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Senate Banana Republicans Will Let Trump Go Free, And In The Process, Damage Themselves

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, February 8, 2021

Banana Republicans in the United States Senate do NOT, and will NOT need, “smoking gun evidence” to convict Donald Trump of Insurrection, because in their warped imaginations, he did nothing wrong.

Those feckless individuals have not merely bowed the knee to Trump, or fallen prostate at his feet to lick his boots and the ground he walks upon, but by so doing, they have unambiguously signaled that they are not merely corrupted, but are traitorously and treasonously aligned, as well.

Allan Lichtman

Their fealty, their loyalty, their oath, though it may have appeared so, is NOT to the Constitution, but to some other nation, some other government, one that is NOT the United States of America – The Cult of Trump.

The benighted Moscow Mitch McConnell and his equally benighted Kooky Kentucky Klown pal Rand Paul are still up to no good.


Here Is The Smoking Gun Evidence To Back Impeachment Of Donald Trump

By Dr. Allan Lichtman, PhD, opinion contributor
02/08/21 10:00 AM EST

Allan Lichtman is a Distinguished Professor of History at American University, and an election forecaster. He is the author of “The Embattled Vote in America: From the Founding to the Present.” He tweets @AllanLichtman.

While the House impeachment managers have focused on events leading up to the Capitol breach, it was the real time response from Donald Trump to the rioters which yields smoking gun evidence of his intent to incite the insurrection. Trump failed to promptly call off his followers or to summon timely assistance for the police, despite pleas from his fellow Republicans caught up in the mayhem. His final words that day connect his incendiary statements about a “stolen election” to the storming of the Capitol.

As he watched the insurrection unfold on television, with some delight according to witnesses, Trump made no immediate demand that the rioters leave the Capitol. He failed to heed the pleas of Republicans in Congress, who desperately tried to call him with no response. “We are begging essentially, and he was nowhere to be found,” Representative Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio said. We know Trump did call Senator Tommy Tuberville of Alabama after mistakenly dialing Senator Mike Lee of Utah. Trump called Tuberville not to ask about his safety or to offer assistance, but to discuss a strategy for objecting to the count of electoral votes.

When rioters breached the Capitol in full view of cameras, Trump did not appear on television to denounce them or tell his followers to cease and desist. Instead, he stoked the incitement with a tweet to attack his vice president and double down on claims about a stolen election. He wrote, “Mike Pence did not have the courage to do what should have been done to protect our country and our Constitution, giving states a chance to certify a corrected set of facts, not the fraudulent or inaccurate ones.”

Trump later sent a tweet in the passive voice, “Stay peaceful!” He sent a similar message more than half an hour later. He still had not appeared in person on any medium at this point. Trump eventually released a video that told his supporters, Read the rest of this entry »

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James A. Garfield on Separation of Church and State… in 1874

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, February 8, 2021

James A. Garfield

It’s always interesting to see how our forebears thought about certain fundamental matters to our nation’s governance. We have historians to guide us, who make it their life’s work to study, and investigate the men, women, and circumstances of their lives, and the times in which they lived. We can, and should be grateful to, and for, them; for they bring to life those things which, though they may seem dead, are still often, very much alive.

Following is an excerpt in whole, as found in the Congressional Record – a verbatim record of remarks made on the floor of the House of Representatives – of a statement made by then-Ohio Representative James A. Garfield, from the 19th Congressional District, who later became President of the United States, and was also, at age 50, ingloriously, the second President assassinated.

Interestingly, he survived being shot on July 2, but eventually succumbed to infection September 19, which was introduced by doctors who frequently inserted their unsterile hands into the wound in efforts to remove the bullet. Today, unless a bullet is lodged near a vital organ, or blood vessel, and is thought to possibly migrate, they’re left in situ (in place) because, the theory being, that the heat generated by firing kills any bacteria which may be introduced, and sometimes, cauterizes the wound.


Mr. GARFIELD. I desire in a very few words, not to argue the merits of this case but to give the ground on which the Committee on Appropriations made their recommendation. Having stated that ground, I shall leave the question to the discretion of the House.

I agree with everything that the gentleman from Massachusetts [Mr. E. R. Hoar] has said about Read the rest of this entry »

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The Midnight Train To Georgia Has Left The Station

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, February 6, 2021

The Number 1 smash hit popularized by Atlanta, Georgia-based family band of Gladys Knight and the Pips in October 1973 was the work of a native Mississippian from Pontotoc named Jim Weatherly.

His family reported that Jim died recently at his residence in Brentwood, Tennessee, a tony suburb of Nashville, of natural causes, aged 77.

Weatherly wrote two additional tunes that became hits for Gladys Knight and the Pips: “Neither One of Us (Wants to Be the First to Say Goodbye)” and “Best Thing That Ever Happened to Me” – which was originally recorded by country singer Ray Price.

A star quarterback for the University of Mississippi, aka “Ole Miss,” in the 1960s, after graduation, Weatherly, who had already formed a band with some classmates, moved to Nashville where he hoped to find his fortune. Nashville, however, long known as a very cliquish town musically, rejected him. So he and his band moved to the Los Angeles area where he became a songwriter in that area’s then-hot music scene. It was a “training ground” for many musicians who later became immensely popular, super-star caliber artists, including Glen Campbell, Jackson Browne, Tom Petty, Eric Clapton, Ringo Starr, Brian Wilson, Beck, and many others who populated the Laurel Canyon area – a mountainous canyon region in LA’s Hollywood Hills West district, in the Santa Monica Mountains.

Although Laurel Canyon is a rocky, arid, and largely agriculturally inhospitable area, it was fertile ground for artists like Joni Mitchell, David Crosby, Stephen Stills, Graham Nash, and Neil Young, Linda Ronstadt, The Byrds, Frank Zappa, Jim Morrison, Buffalo Springfield, Love, Michelle and John Phillips of the Mamas and the Papas, Roger McGuinn, Gene Clark, Chris Hillman, J. D. Souther, Judee Sill, Carole King, the Eagles, Richie Furay (of Buffalo Springfield and Poco) and many, many more, almost too numerous to mention.

But, lesser known is the backstory of Jim Weatherly’s first hit song for Gladys Knight and the Pips.

After his college football days ended, Weatherly worked in Los Angeles as a songwriter.

During his off-time in LA he often played flag football with other creative types who had athletic backgrounds – among them, Lee Majors, who himself was a former college football player and was then starring in The Big Valley as Heath Barkley, alongside the lead and central character Victoria Barkley, played by renown actress Barbara Stanwyck. The Big Valley was a unique western television serial whose central character was a woman (Stanwyck), who had taken Heath as her own, though he was the illegitimate son of her character’s late husband Thomas Barkley, following his death.

Jim Weatherly was inducted to the Songwriters Hall of Fame at their 45th Annual Induction and Awards ceremony at the Marriott Marquis Theater on June 12, 2014 in New York City.

The Big Valley was Read the rest of this entry »

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The GOP is a hot mess. Should we tear down the Lincoln Memorial?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, January 31, 2021

Some people – mostly Banana Republicans and similar GOP types – have minds like concrete:

Thoroughly mixed, and permanently set.

That includes Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Green, R-14 (aka “MT-headed Greene”), and most all of the former “Party of Lincoln.”

In fact, the GOP could now be considered almost-fully matured.

But, we should not tear down the Lincoln Memorial, because frankly, the currently sorry, stinking condition of the once-Grand Old Party is not his fault. Not by a long shot.

What we are seeing now is the natural result and full outcome, the fruit-bearing, of seeds that were planted in 1964. This is their natural fruit. That was the year the GOP suffered one of the most significant losses in American Presidential electoral history. Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater was the party’s nominee, and the incumbent Democrat Lyndon Baines Johnson (LBJ) was President, having succeeded to the office after the assassination of President John Fitzgerald Kennedy (JFK) in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963. He was seeking a second term.

The GOP’s National Convention was held in Daly City, California (adjacent San Francisco on the north) at Cow Palace, a former livestock arena, July 13-16, 1964.

New York Governor Nelson Rockefeller was a keynote speaker, and on one occasion requested, and was granted, 5 minutes to address the delegates. He was booed continuously for over 16 minutes.

Perhaps you’re wondering, ‘Why, whatever for was he booed?’

He was seeking inclusion of language in the official party platform that condemned, and rejected (there’s the so-called “cancel culture” at work) Ku Klux Klan, Communists, John Birch Society members, and other domestic terrorists and White Supremacist racists including Dixiecrats – Southern Democrats who supported segregation, racist policies and laws – who had infiltrated the Republican party.

Read it again:

“…Ku Klux Klan, Communists, John Birch Society members, and other domestic terrorists and White Supremacist racists including Dixiecrats – Southern Democrats who supported segregation, racist policies and laws – who had infiltrated the Republican party.”

Yes, you read that correctly.

Ku Klux Klansmen rally in support of Republican Arizona Senator Barry Goldwater, the 1964 GOP Presidential nominee.
Image: Universal History Archive/Getty Images

In 1964, the GOP accepted, and welcomed the inclusion of Communists, the Ku Klux Klan, John Birch Society members, and other radicalized elements, into the party.

That’s a very bitter, and hard pill to swallow, but it’s the unvarnished truth.

Oh… and his motion was overwhelmingly rejected.

Here’s full-length video of his address:
https://www.c-span.org/video/?c3807346/governor-nelson-rockefeller-addresses-64-convention

Here’s what Governor Rockefeller said in his address: Read the rest of this entry »

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Will POTUS Joe Biden Reverse Trump’s Corrupt Pardons?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, January 25, 2021

WashingtonMonthly.com

Can Trump’s Pardons Be Reversed?

by Holly Brewer and Timothy Noah

President Ulysses S. Grant did it, and George W. Bush, and the Constitution would seem to encourage it.

January 22, 2021
2:07 PM

We’ve seen a lot of hand-wringing about President Donald Trump’s eleventh-hour marathon of glaringly unethical pardons, but only a little consideration (see 1-here, 2-here, 3-here, 4-here, and 5-here) about whether the Constitution permits them. A decent case can be made that it does not—and that at least some of these pardons can be reversed.

The relevant passage is Article II, Section 2, in the so-called “Commander-in-chief clause.” The president, it says, “shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.” Nobody knows precisely what that means, but Trump has been under impeachment and awaiting Senate trial — for the second time — since January 13, 2021.

The most interesting real-life precedent for restricting a president’s right to issue pardons concerns President Andrew Johnson, who in March 1868 became the first of three presidents to be impeached by Congress, and two months later became the first to win Senate acquittal.

In March 1869, Johnson, on his last full day in office, pardoned Jacob and Moses Dupuy, who’d been convicted of defrauding the Internal Revenue Department, and Richard C. Enright, who’d been convicted of conspiracy to defraud the government. On assuming office, Johnson’s successor, President Ulysses Grant, reversed all three by calling back the U.S. marshals out delivering the pardons. A fourth pardon that Grant meant to reverse, to one James F. Martin, was permitted to stand because Martin had it already in hand, according to the late P.S. Ruckman, Jr., a political scientist at Rock Valley College in Rockford, Illinois. Grant’s reversal of Moses Dupuy’s pardon was challenged in court and upheld on the technical grounds that Dupuy never received it. (Ruckman, an expert on presidential pardons, Read the rest of this entry »

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The King of Talk Radio has Died in Los Angeles

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, January 23, 2021

AJC.com

Talk show host Larry King, face of CNN for 25 years, dies at 87

by Rodney Ho

Larry King died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles, according to a tweet by Ora Media, the studio and network which he co-founded. No cause of death was given, but The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and other media outlets had reported earlier this month he was hospitalized with COVID-19.

Larry King in his office prior to his CNN show in the Hollywood section of Los Angeles Friday, Feb. 11, 2000. (AP Photo/Rene Macura)

He has had many health problems over the years including Type 2 diabetes, heart attacks and two bouts with cancer.

His 9PM show “Larry King Live” ran from 1985 to 2010 on CNN, and for many years, the inquisitive man with his signature suspenders and hunched shoulders hosted CNN’s top-rated show, and he and CNN founder Ted Turner became close friends.

His long-running USA Today column, with its random thoughts and observations separated by ellipses, was a precursor to a Twitter feed.

Marlon Brando, right, gestures while talking with Larry King during a break in the taping of CNN’s ‘Larry King Live’ in Los Angeles, Friday, April 5, 1996. Brando denied his opinions are anti-Semitic, but militant and mainstream Jewish leaders said his comments about Jews controlling Hollywood were ‘sloppy’ and shameful. (AP Photo/Larry King Live, Danny Feld)

Over the decades, King interviewed hundreds of celebrities, news-makers and politicians ranging from Read the rest of this entry »

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John C. Calhoun and the Racist Roots of the Senate Filibuster

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, January 22, 2021

Following are excerpted portions of the in-depth interview, which may be read in its entirety, or heard, via the link at the end this entry.


Book ‘Kill Switch’ Examines The Racist History Of The Senate Filibuster

TERRY GROSS, HOST: Congress is trying to return to normal after the insurrection. But what is normal? There are more threats of violence surrounding the inauguration. The norm-breaking that became the norm during the Trump presidency is about to change with the Biden administration. Another change will be the new Democratic majority in the Senate. After newly elected Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock are sworn in, the Senate will be evenly divided, 50 Republicans and 50 Democrats. But Vice President Kamala Harris will have the tie-breaking vote.

But how much power does that actually give Democrats in the Senate? A majority is not enough to pass legislation anymore and hasn’t been for a long time because of the modern use of the filibuster. It takes three-fifths of the Senate to override a filibuster, which means the minority only needs 41 votes to prevent any bill from even coming to a vote. My guest Adam Jentleson says the modern use of the filibuster has crippled American democracy, enabling the minority to systematically block bills favored by the majority. He’s the author of the new book, “Kill Switch,” about the rise of the modern Senate. He knows the ins and outs of Senate rules because he worked as Harry Reid’s deputy chief of staff when Reid was the Democratic leader. Jentleson joined Reid’s staff in 2010 and stayed until 2017.

“Kill Switch” is a history of how the filibuster started as a tool of Southern senators upholding slavery, and then later was used as a tool to block civil rights legislation. The book concludes with Senator Mitch McConnell’s advances in the use of filibuster as an obstructionist tool. Jentleson is now public affairs director at Democracy Forward, which was founded in 2017 to fight corruption in the executive branch.

ADAM JENTLESON: Slowly, over the course of time, but primarily to serve the interests of slave states and try to preserve slavery against the march of progress and a growing majority of both states and Americans who wanted to abolish slavery. The filibuster did not exist in name or practice until about the middle of the 19th century. So this was well after all of the Founding Fathers had passed away. James Madison was one of the longest lived and an ardent opponent of the filibuster to the extent that it sort of was coming into existence in the 1830s. And he passed away in the early 1830s.

John C. Calhoun (1782-1850), United States Representative of South Carolina-CD6, 10th Secretary of War, 16th Secretary of State, Senator of South Carolina, and 7th Vice President (1825-1832), ardent slavery proponent, and slave owner.

So the progenitor of the filibuster, its main innovator, was John C. Calhoun, the great nullifier, the leader, father of the Confederacy. And Calhoun innovated the filibuster for the specific purpose of empowering the planter class. He was a senator from South Carolina. His main patrons were the powerful planters. And he was seeking to create a regional constituency to empower himself against the march of progress and against – what was becoming clear was a superior economic model in the North. So Calhoun started to innovate forms of obstruction that came to be known as the filibuster.

GROSS: So you describe John Calhoun as, like, basically, the father of the filibuster. Let’s be clear who he was. I mean, he not only wanted to protect slave owners, he argued that slavery created racial harmony and improved the lives of slaves. You quote him in the book. He said, never before has the Black race of Central Africa, from the dawn of history to the present day, attained a condition so civilized and improved, not only physically, but morally and intellectually. Amazing that he could justify that slavery was improving the lives of enslaved people.

JENTLESON: That’s right. And it’s important to note at this time, you know – not to give people of that era too much credit for being enlightened. But, you know, there was a shift in public opinion going on regarding slavery in the United States. The abolitionist movement was beginning to gain traction. And, you know, while folks weren’t exactly at the enlightened state of believing in full equality, they recognized that slavery had – was, at best, a necessary evil, emphasis on the evil.

And so Calhoun took it upon himself to argue that there was nothing evil about it. In that same speech that you quoted, he went on to explain that slavery was not a necessary evil, but, quote, “a positive good.” He was such an ardent defender and such a vehement racist that he couldn’t even accept the sort of antebellum acknowledgement that there were parts of the institution that were evil. So it was very clear what his motivations were. He wanted to preserve slavery. And the filibuster was what he deployed to achieve that goal.

GROSS: So we’ve established that needing a supermajority to pass legislation was not what the founders wanted. They wanted simple majorities. You’ve talked about how the filibuster was initiated in the mid-19th century and the ways it was used to enable slave owners and to keep the institution of slavery. But you write that the only time the filibuster was used during Jim Crow with any consistency was to block any form of civil rights legislation and that this happened through the 1960s.

So give us an example of that – like, of the systematic use of the filibuster to block civil rights legislation.

JENTLESON: So what Southern senators faced starting in the 1920s was majority support for civil rights bills. These were rudimentary civil rights bills. These were anti-lynching bills and anti-poll tax bills, but they were civil rights bills nonetheless. These bills started passing the House with big majorities. They had presidents of both parties in the White House ready to sign them, and they actually had enormous public support. Gallup polled the public on anti-lynching bills in 1937 and found 70% of Americans supporting federal anti-lynching laws. And they polled anti-poll tax laws in the 1940s and found 60% support. So Southern senators started to block these bills in the name of minority rights Read the rest of this entry »

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Safety and Security in the Southern States during a Democratic Administration

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Apprehension seems to exist among the people of the Southern States that by the accession of a Democratic Administration their property and their peace and personal security are to be endangered. There has never been any reasonable cause for such apprehension. Indeed, the most ample evidence to the contrary has all the while existed and been open to their inspection. It is found in nearly all the published speeches of him who now addresses you.

Perhaps you’ll recognize the opening words of Abraham Lincoln’s First Inaugural Address, delivered March 4, 1861. There is one very minor, only slight change, however, and it is the substitution of the word “Democratic” for the word “Republican.”

That is purposeful, and deliberate, to illustrate a case in point.

Photograph shows participants and crowd at the first inauguration of President Abraham Lincoln, at the U.S. Capitol, Washington, D.C. Lincoln is standing under the wood canopy, at the front, midway between the left and center posts. His face is in shadow but the white shirt front is visible. (Source: Ostendorf, p. 87) “A distant photograph from a special platform by an unknown photographer, in front of the Capitol, Washington, D.C., afternoon of March 4, 1861. ‘A small camera was directly in front of Mr. Lincoln,’ reported a newspaper, ‘another at a distance of a hundred yards, and a third of huge dimensions on the right … The three photographers present had plenty of time to take pictures, yet only the distant views have survived.” (Source: Ostendorf, p. 86-87)

Slave Southern states nowadays are largely Republican political strongholds.

That is not accidental. It is deliberate, and has been an ongoing effort in the Republican party since at least 1964, or, perhaps even earlier.

States below the Mason-Dixon line – a surveyor’s line of demarcation delineating primarily the southern border of Pennsylvania, and the western border of Delaware, from Maryland – sometimes also known as, or referred to as “slave states,” i.e., states where slavery as an institution was considered not only legal, but morally upright, ethical, and good – were once largely Democratic strongholds until around the mid-1960’s, or thereabouts.

The tables, however, were largely turned, and the tide began to shift in earnest beginning with the candidacy of Arizona United States Senator Barry Goldwater, who was the failed Republican candidate for President in 1964, opposite President Lyndon Baines Johnson of Texas, who as Vice President, succeeded to the Presidency upon the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963 in Dallas, Texas.

At the GOP National Convention that year, New York’s Republican Governor Nelson Rockefeller ominously warned of the invasion of the GOP by radicalized elements from the South, which included members of the Ku Klux Klan, John Birch Society, Communists, and other domestic terrorists. In his address to the party’s delegates at the July 1964 Republican National Convention at Cow Palace in Daly City, California, he was given 5 minutes to address the delegates, and was booed for over 16 minutes. He was requesting adoption of a resolution to the 1964 official party platform condemning those groups and individuals whom belonged to them, who had infiltrated the Republican party, and sought to include the following language: “The Republican Party fully respects the contribution of responsible criticism, and defends the right of dissent in the democratic process. But we repudiate the efforts of Read the rest of this entry »

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Open Letter to POTUS Abraham “Honest Abe” Lincoln

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, January 18, 2021

Dear President Lincoln,

You and George Washington had something in common, aside from Presidency – you were both honest men.

There’s a story told, that as we understand it now, is but a mythical fable of someone’s vivid imagination, although every lie has an element of truth. That fable was first apparently crafted by the Reverend Mason Locke Weems (1759-1825), the first person ordained by the Anglican Church for the Episcopal Church in America after the American Revolution.

Though he first studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh, and in London, his calling was apparently to the Christian ministry, and he never practiced medicine.

His 1784 ordination – first as deacon, as customary, September 5, and then as priest on September 12 – was remarkable in part, because he was the first beneficiary of the English Parliament’s passage of the Enabling Act on August 13, 1784, which thereby enabled English bishops to ordain clergy for the American Church without requiring them to swear a loyalty oath to the English sovereign.

He later served as rector in two Maryland parishes – All Hallows’ Parish in Anne Arundel County, 1784-1789, and then from 1790-1792 of Westminster Parish in the same county.

For about 20 years, he was also an itinerant preacher at various Virginia parishes, most notably among them the Pohick Church, where George Washington (1732-1799) attended, before the Revolution. That enabled him to refer to himself as “formerly rector of Mt. Vernon Parish.”

From around 1791 until his death, he became an author, and book peddler for publisher Matthew Carey. Though he wrote and had published various moralizing tracts and biographies of individuals of renown in that era, such as Benjamin Franklin, William Penn, and General Francis Marion (a Continental Army General nicknamed the “Swamp Fox” for his elusive tactics), his most famous biography was of George Washington – “The Life and Memorable Actions of George Washington, General and Commander of the Armies of America” – and first published in 1800. It proved to be quite a success, especially with school-aged children, and in its fifth edition in 1806 – albeit with a slightly different title, “The Life of George Washington: With Curious Anecdotes, Equally Honourable to Himself, and Exemplary to His Young Countrymen” – for the first time, there appeared the anecdote of Washington and the cherry tree.

Knowing Weems was a minister, and that he Read the rest of this entry »

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Political Corruption Abounds

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, January 2, 2021

There is little-to-no question that the damage done to the Republican Party by the Liar/Narcissist/Loser in Chief has taken a toll upon the party, and it may well be years before they can recover from the 4-year onslaught.

There is also little-to-no question that they have been their own worst enemy. That is not to say that the Democrats are all light and goodness, for they are not. Hillary Rodham Clinton did her damndest to hobble the party by literally having the party’s directors and upper level managers sign a contract over to her relinquishing, and ceding control of the party to her. While that was not illegal, it was unethical has hell, and spelled the end of Bernie Sanders candidacy, who, with crowds surpassing those of Hillary and Trump combined, and with a political history that was unwavering and consistent, appeared TWICE as if he would be the party’s nominee. But for Hillary.

Her corrupted actions were detailed in a book authored by Donna Brazile, which was entitled “Hacks.”

And, perhaps you may recall how she later revealed in her book, an excerpt of which was made into a Politico article, what she’d found when she was briefly DNC chair, specifically, how a back-room deal was struck between Hillary and the DNC a year before the 2016 election campaign season began.

So, let’s recap.

Here’s two of the article’s first three paragraphs, which are excerpted from her book Hacks: The Inside Story of the Break-ins and Breakdowns that Put Donald Trump in the White House:

“I had promised Bernie when I took the helm of the Democratic National Committee after the convention that I would get to the bottom of whether Hillary Clinton’s team had rigged the nomination process, as a cache of emails stolen by Russian hackers and posted online had suggested. I’d had my suspicions from the moment I walked in the door of the DNC a month or so earlier, based on the leaked emails. But who knew if some of them might have been forged? I needed to have solid proof, and so did Bernie.

“So I followed the money. My predecessor, Florida Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz, had not been the most active chair in fundraising at a time when President Barack Obama’s neglect had left the party in significant debt. As Hillary’s campaign gained momentum, she resolved the party’s debt and put it on a starvation diet. It had become dependent on her campaign for survival, for which she expected to wield control of its operations.”

“When I got back from a vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, I at last found the document that described it all: the Joint Fund-Raising Agreement between the DNC, the Hillary Victory Fund, and Hillary for America.

“The agreement—signed by Amy Dacey, the former CEO of the DNC, and Robby Mook [Hillary’s Campaign Manager] with a copy to Marc Elias [General Counsel for Hillary’s campaign]—specified that in exchange for raising money and investing in the DNC, Hillary would control the party’s finances, strategy, and all the money raised. Her campaign had the right of refusal of who would be the party communications director, and it would make final decisions on all the other staff. The DNC also was required to consult with the campaign about all other staffing, budgeting, data, analytics, and mailings.”


theatlantic.com

The Unbearable Weakness of Trump’s Minions


Senator Josh Hawley isn’t just engaging in civic vandalism—he is an emblem of a weak and rotten Republican Party.

Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri
Ryan Christopher Jones / The New York Times / Redux

Those hoping for a quick snapback to sanity for the Republican Party once Donald Trump is no longer president should temper those hopes.

The latest piece of evidence to suggest the enduring power of Trumpian unreality is yesterday’s announcement by Senator Josh Hawley of Missouri that he will object next week when Congress convenes to certify the Electoral College vote.

Hawley knows this effort will fail, just as every other effort to undo the results of the lawful presidential election will fail. (A brief reminder for those with faulty short-term memories: Joe Biden defeated Trump by more than 7 million popular votes and 74 Electoral College votes.) Every single attempt to prove that the election was marked by fraud or that President-elect Biden’s win is illegitimate—an effort that now includes about 60 lawsuits—has flopped. In fact, what we’ve discovered since the November 3 election is that it was “the most secure in American history,” as election experts in Trump’s own administration have declared. But this immutable, eminently provable fact doesn’t deter Trump and many of his allies from trying to overturn the election; perversely, it seems to embolden them.

One such Trump ally is Tommy Tuberville, the newly elected senator from Alabama, who has suggested that he might challenge the Electoral College count. And there are others. But what makes Hawley’s declaration ominously noteworthy is that unlike Tuberville—a former college football coach who owes his political career in a deep-red state to Trump’s endorsement in the GOP primary against Jeff Sessions—Hawley is a man who clearly knows better. According to his Senate biography, he is “recognized as one of the nation’s leading constitutional lawyers.” A former state attorney general, Hawley has litigated before the Supreme Court. He graduated from Stanford University in 2002 and Yale Law School in 2006. He has clerked for Chief Justice John Roberts; he taught at one of London’s elite private schools, St. Paul’s; and he served as an appellate litigator at one of the world’s biggest law firms.

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It is one thing for Hawley to position himself as a populist, something he had done even before he was elected in 2018; it is quite another for him to knowingly engage in civic vandalism and, in ostentatiously unpatriotic ways, undermine established norms and safeguards. This is precisely what Senator Hawley is now doing—and he is doing so in the aftermath of Trump’s loss, when some political observers might have hoped that the conspiracy mindset and general insanity of the Trump modus operandi would begin to lose their salience.

A longtime acquaintance of the Missouri senator explained to me Hawley’s actions this way: “Hawley never wants to talk down to his voters. He wants to speak for them, and at the moment, they are saying the election was stolen.”

“He surely knows this isn’t true,” this acquaintance continued, “and that the legal arguments don’t hold water. And yet clearly the incentives he confronts—as someone who wants to speak for those voters, and as someone with ambitions beyond the Senate—lead him to conclude he should pretend the lie is true. This is obviously a very bad sign about the direction of the GOP in the coming years.”

Think about this statement for a moment: The incentives Josh Hawley and many of his fellow Republicans officeholders confront lead them to conclude that they should pretend the lie is true.

Those who have hoped that Republicans like Senator Hawley would begin to break free from Trump once he lost the election have not understood the nature of the change that has come over the party’s base.

Trump was the product of deep, disturbing currents on the American right; he was not the creator of them. Those currents have existed for many decades; we saw them manifested in the popularity of figures such as Sarah Palin, Patrick J. Buchanan, Newt Gingrich, Oliver North, and many others. But their power grew in force and speed over the past decade. In 2016, Trump tapped into these currents and, as president and leader of the Republican Party, he channeled those populist passions destructively, rather than in the constructive ways that other Republicans before him, such as Ronald Reagan, had done. (Even if you’re a progressive who loathed Reagan, the notion that he was a pernicious and malicious force in American politics in the style of Trump is simply not credible.)

What is happening in the GOP is that figures such as Hawley, along with many of his Senate and House colleagues, and important Republican players, including the former United Nations Ambassador Nikki Haley, are all trying to position themselves as the heirs of Trump. None of them possesses the same sociopathic qualities as Trump, and their efforts will be less impulsive and presumably less clownish, more calculated and probably less conspiracy-minded. It may be that not all of them support Hawley’s stunt; perhaps some are even embarrassed by it. But these figures are seismographers; they are determined to act in ways that win the approval of the Republican Party’s base. And this goes to the heart of the danger.

The problem with the Republican “establishment” and with elected officials such as Josh Hawley is not that they are crazy, or that they don’t know any better; it is that they are cowards, and that they are weak. They are far more ambitious than they are principled, and they are willing to damage American politics and society rather than be criticized by their own tribe. I’m guessing that many of them haven’t read Nietzsche, but they have embraced his philosophy of perspectivism, which in its crudest form posits that there is no objective truth, no authoritative or independent criteria for determining what is true or false. In this view, we all get to make up our own facts and create our own narratives. Everything is conditioned on what your perspective is. This is exactly the sort of slippery epistemic nihilism for which conservatives have, for more than a generation, reproached the academic left—except the left comes by it more honestly.

The single most worrisome political fact in America right now is that a significant portion of the Republican Party lives in a fantasy world, a place where facts and truth don’t hold sway, where “owning the libs” is an end in itself, and where seceding from reality is a symbol of tribal loyalty, rather than a sign of mental illness. This is leading the party, and America itself, to places we’ve never been before, including the spectacle of a defeated president and his supporters engaging in a sustained effort to steal an election.

The tactics of Hawley and his many partisan confreres, if they aren’t checked and challenged, will put at risk what the scholar Stephen L. Carter calls “the entire project of Enlightenment democracy.” This doesn’t seem to bother Hawley and many in his party. But what he should know—and, one hopes, does know, somewhere in the recesses of his heart—is that he has moved very far away from conservatism.

Whether the Republican Party can be salvaged is very much an open question. I don’t know the answer. But here is what I do know: Patriotic Republicans and conservatives need to fight for the soul of the Republican Party, for its sake and for the sake of the nation. America needs two healthy and sane political parties. Trump’s departure on January 20 should open up space for at least a few brave and responsible figures to arise, to help ground the GOP in truth rather than falsehoods, reality instead of fantasy, and to use the instruments of power for the pursuit of justice.

Their task won’t be easy; right now the political winds are in their face rather than at their back. Trump’s hold on the GOP remains firm, and separating from Trump and Trumpism will trigger hostility in an often angry and radicalized base. The right-wing ecosystem is in a mood to find and (figuratively) hang traitors, whom it defines as anyone in the Republican Party who doesn’t acquiesce to Trump’s indecency and paranoia. Which in turn means that those hoping to lead a Republican reclamation project need to find ways to be shrewd and persuasive, to be crafty while maintaining their integrity. They need to connect with the base but find ways to elevate it instead of pandering to it. In better times, many Republican leaders have done so, starting of course with Abraham Lincoln, “the great hero of America’s struggle for the noblest cause,” in the words of his early 20th-century biographer Lord Charnwood. But others have done so as well.

Our collective hope should be that principled Republicans will find their voice and prevail—one courageous step at a time, one act of decency at a time, one year at a time.

Read the rest of this entry »

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SCOTUS Fun Facts!

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, October 28, 2020

Merrick Garland was nominated to the Supreme Court by President Barack Obama in March 2016. The Senate never voted on his nomination.

Led by Republican Senate Majority Leader “Moscow Mitch” McConnell, the Senate took no action on POTUS Barack Obama’s nominee Merrick B. Garland on March 16, 2016.

The last time the Senate had NOT considered a SCOTUS nominee was 61 years 4 months 8 days prior with Harlan Johnson, who was nominated by Dwight D. Eisenhower on November 9, 1954.

The first nominee to have NO ACTION taken upon his nomination was… Read the rest of this entry »

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Amy Coney Barrett Served On Gay-Hating Schools’ Board

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, October 21, 2020

This is what the soft hatred of bigotry cloaked in religious garb looks like.

This revelation should come as no surprise, that a radicalized right-wing religious zealot should serve at a high level on the Board of Directors for three schools in three separate states under a common umbrella would discriminate.

Below her image are three more images of the same type thing.

This person must NOT be confirmed to the nation’s highest court!

And toward that end, perhaps it may alarm you to know that a Ku Klux Klansman has been seated on the nation’s highest court.

No, it’s not any of the current members.

It was Hugo Black, of Alabama.

https://timeline.com/hugo-black-justice-klan-4877fcf6ac75

You can read Matt Reimann’s excellently succinct August 15, 2017 article via the link above. Of note, Mr. Justice Black was also a “textualist” on matters of interpretation of the Constitution – the same thing late Justice Scalia said he was, and which Judge Barrett says she is.

The primary problem with that alleged “style” of interpretation, is that it’s nonsensical. Here’s a succinctly brief statement why from Chicago, IL Mayor Lori Lightfoot:

“CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) — Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she is preparing for when Amy Coney Barrett takes her seat on the U.S. Supreme Court. She was asked to share her thoughts Tuesday on the judge and minced no words.

“Mayor Lightfoot was first asked if she views the U.S. Constitution as Judge Barrett does, as an “originalist.”

“Originalists firmly believe all statements in the U.S. Constitution must be strictly interpreted based on the original understanding at the time the Constitution was adopted. They do not believe in the concept of a “Living Constitution” that can be interpreted in the context of current times.

““You ask a gay, black woman if she is an originalist? No, ma’am, I am not,” Lightfoot laughed.

““That the Constitution didn’t consider me a person in any way, shape or form because I’m a woman, because I’m black, because I’m gay? I am not an originalist. I believe in the Constitution. I believe that it is a document that the founders intended to evolve and what they did was set the framework for how our country was going to be different from any other.

““But originalists say that, ‘Let’s go back to 1776 and whatever was there in the original language, that’s it.’ That language excluded, now, over 50 percent of the country. So, no I’m not an originalist.”

“Mayor Lightfoot said she’s deeply worried about some of Judge Barrett’s stated views, for instance, being against gay marriage.

““I deeply worry about this woman’s stated views. She’s on the record on a number of different things, not the least of which is thinking that gay marriage is something that shouldn’t be countenanced. And she’s got soulmates in Justice Thomas and others, who think that the decision by the Supreme Court…should somehow be rolled back,” Lightfoot said.

““What should I tell my daughter — that somehow now my wife and I are no longer married? That we’re no longer legitimately recognized in the eyes of the law? That is dangerous, dangerous territory. And what about a woman’s right to choose? We’re gonna keep re-litigating this issue, and we’re gonna make abortion illegal, as Amy Coney Barrett thinks it should be?

“The Mayor also called Republicans “hypocrites” for pushing the Barrett nomination when they put off taking up the Merrick Garland nomination by President Obama.

“”The hypocrisy is something that is a bitter pill for me to swallow,” Lightfoot said.”

Here’s an excerpt introduction from the article “A U.S. Supreme Court justice was in the Ku Klux Klan—and he remained on the bench for 34 years. Hugo Black was exposed just after his confirmation, but it made no difference.“:

The September 13, 1937 front page of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette printed an image of Black’s KKK resignation letter.

“Hugo Black had been associate justice of the Supreme Court for less than a month when the news broke. In September of 1937, an exposé by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette found proof of Black’s membership in the Ku Klux Klan. He had joined in September of 1923, and resigned in July, 1925, as one of his first moves before running for one of Alabama’s U.S. Senate seat. Ironically, the smoking gun was Black’s resignation letter, written in legible longhand on Klan stationery, which appeared on the paper’s front page.

“Franklin Roosevelt, who nominated Hugo Black, was implicated in the scandal, which threatened to have far-reaching consequences for the president’s New Deal image. What was once seen as shrewd politics — the New Deal-friendly textualist was confirmed with a 63–16 vote — had become a disgrace. “Millions of Americans,” wrote one Indiana newspaper, “will not forget this sole tangible accomplishment of President Roosevelt’s attempted ‘liberalization’ of the Supreme Court.”

“When asked by the press to remark on the scandal, Roosevelt brushed questions aside, saying, “I only know what I have read in the newspapers. I know that the stories are appearing serially and their publication is not complete. Mr. Justice Black is in Europe where, undoubtedly, he cannot get the full text of these articles. Until such time as he returns, there is no further comment to be made.”


apnews.com

Barrett Was Trustee At Private School With Anti-Gay Policies

By Michelle R. Smith and Michael Biesecker
October 21, 2020 at 10:51:08 AM CDT

Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett served for nearly three years on the board of private Christian schools that effectively barred admission to children of same-sex parents and made it plain that openly gay and lesbian teachers weren’t welcome in the classroom.

The policies that discriminated against LGBTQ people and their children were in place for years at Trinity Schools Inc., both before Barrett joined the board in 2015 and during the time she served.

The three schools, in Indiana, Minnesota and Virginia, are affiliated with People of Praise, an insular community rooted in its own interpretation of the Bible, of which Barrett and her husband have been longtime members. At least three of the couple’s seven children have attended the Trinity School at Greenlawn, in South Bend, Indiana.

The AP spoke with more than two dozen people who attended or worked at Trinity Schools, or former members of People of Praise. They said the community’s teachings have been consistent for decades: Homosexuality is an abomination against God, sex should occur only within marriage, and marriage should only be between a man and a woman.

Interviewees told the AP that Trinity’s leadership communicated anti-LGBTQ policies and positions in meetings, one-on-one conversations, enrollment agreements, employment agreements, handbooks and written policies — including those in place when Barrett was an active member of the board.

“Trinity Schools does not unlawfully discriminate with respect to race, color, gender, national origin, age, disability, or other legally protected classifications under applicable law, with respect to the administration of its programs,” said Jon Balsbaugh, president of Trinity Schools Inc., which runs the three campuses, in an email.

The actions are probably legal, experts said. Scholars said the school’s and organization’s teachings on homosexuality and treatment of LGBTQ people are harsher than those of the mainstream Catholic church. In a documentary released Wednesday, Pope Francis endorsed civil unions for the first time as pope, and said in an interview for the film that, “Homosexual people have the right to be in a family. They are children of God.”

Barrett’s views on whether LGBTQ people should have the same constitutional rights as other Americans became a focus last week in her Senate confirmation hearing. But her longtime membership in People of Praise and her leadership position at Trinity Schools were not discussed, even though most of the people the AP spoke with said her deep and decades-long involvement in the community signals she would be hostile to gay rights if confirmed.

Suzanne B. Goldberg, a professor at Columbia Law School who studies sexuality and gender law, said private schools have wide legal latitude to set admissions criteria. And, she said, Trinity probably isn’t covered by recent Supreme Court rulings outlawing employment discrimination against LGBTQ people because of its affiliation with a religious community. But, she added, cases addressing those questions are likely to come before the high court in the near future, and Barrett’s past oversight of Trinity’s discriminatory policies raises concerns.

“When any member of the judiciary affiliates themselves with an institution that is committed to discrimination on any ground, it is important to look more closely at how that affects the individual’s ability to give all cases a fair hearing,” Goldberg said.

The AP sent detailed questions for Barrett to the White House press office. Rather than providing direct answers, White House spokesman Judd Deere instead accused AP of attacking the nominee.

“Because Democrats and the media are unable to attack Judge Barrett’s sterling qualifications, they have instead turned to pathetic personal attacks on her children’s Christian school, even though the Supreme Court has repeatedly reaffirmed that religious schools are protected by the First Amendment,” Deere said in an email.

Nearly all the people interviewed for this story are gay or said they have gay family members. They used words such as “terrified,” “petrified” and “frightening” to describe the prospect of Barrett on the high court. Some of them know Barrett, have mutual friends with her or even have been in her home dozens of times. They describe her as “nice” or “a kind person,” but told the AP they feared others would suffer if Barrett tries to implement People of Praise’s views on homosexuality on the Supreme Court.

About half of the people asked not to be identified for fear of retaliation against themselves or their families from other members of People of Praise, or because they had not come out to everyone in their lives. Among those interviewed were people who attended all three of its schools and who had been active in several of its 22 branches. Their experiences stretched back as far as the 1970s, and as recently as 2020.

NOT WELCOME

Tom Henry was a senior at Trinity School in Eagan, Minnesota, serving as a student ambassador, providing tours to prospective families, when Barrett was an active member of the board.

In early 2017, a lesbian parent asked him whether Trinity was open to gay people and expressed concern about how her child would be treated.

Henry, who is gay, said he didn’t know what to say. He had been instructed not to answer questions about People of Praise or Trinity’s “politics.”

The next day, Henry recalled, he asked the school’s then-headmaster, Jon Balsbaugh, how he should have answered. Henry said Balsbaugh pulled a document out of his desk drawer that condemned gay marriage, and explained it was a new policy from People of Praise that was going into the handbook.

“He looked me right in the eye and said, the next time that happens, you tell them they would not be welcome here,” Henry recounted. “And he said to me that trans families, gay families, gay students, trans students would not feel welcome at Trinity Schools. And then he said, ‘Do we understand each other?’ And I said, yes. And I left. And then I quit the student ambassadors that day.”

Balsbaugh, who has since been promoted to president of Trinity Schools Inc., says his recollection of the conversation “differs considerably,” but declined Read the rest of this entry »

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“The Notorious RBG” – A Very Short Story

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, September 25, 2020

The Supreme Court, and the legal profession in general, are steeped in tradition – perhaps even more so than the United States Senate.

If you’ve ever heard any of the oral arguments before the nation’s highest court, you’ve likely heard the opening remark, “Mr. Chief Justice, may it please the court.”

However, if you’ve never heard an oral argument, you’re fortunate to be living in this age, because oral arguments in the nation’s highest court are recorded and archived for posterity sake. Audio recordings of the arguments may be found Read the rest of this entry »

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Abraham Lincoln: “I am not… in favor of… equality of the… races.”

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, September 23, 2020

The more things change, the more they remain the same.

That oxymoronic statement is likely more moronic than oxy. And yet, we as human beings are capable of change. Change is the only constant. Sometimes, we change for the better, while at others, the worse. But change we must. Again, change is the only constant.

Change implies that a state of being exists in which either progress or regress is possible. (I have opined on that subject previously.) There is no such thing a genuine stasis. Even within the human body, stasis ulcers, also known as venous stasis ulcers, bought about by blood “pooling” – typically in the lower extremities – causes a deterioration in the character and quality of the surrounding flesh. Venous stasis ulcers develop because of venous valve malfunction, and accompanying high return pressure, and occur typically in the feet, ankles, and lower legs. In turn, swelling occurs in the extremity. If you’ve ever wondered why blood only goes in one direction, it’s because of one-way valves in the veins. When the valves malfunction, the return pressure is transmitted AWAY from the heart (venous blood circulates returning TOWARD the heart, in order to be re-oxygenated by passage through the lungs).

But again, let one thing break down, and the entire surrounding environment starts deteriorating. (I would say “goes to hell,” but some might say that’s “unprofessional.”)

Point being, is that condition itself demonstrates that change occurs, and that not all change is good.

On the other hand, positive change yields positive results, and positive change is possible.

What you’re about to read may shock you.

It did me.

For whatever reason, I long had the impression that Lincoln had always been a proponent of racial equality.

That’s not true.

However, he changed.

Exactly how, and when that change began to occur is largely unknown, but his changing opinions about slavery reflected the development of his thought on racial equity. And for that, he became a target, literally, of Southerners who sought his assassination for that reason.

They did mange to succeed in killing him following Lee’s surrender to Grant at Appomattox, in Washington, D.C. at Ford’s Theatre, through John Wilkes Booth who throughout the Civil War was a Confederate spy.

Lincoln’s remarks in full may be found via the link to the National Park Service website.
A New York Times article dated December 28, 1860 which addresses Lincoln’s remarks may be found here:
https://www.nytimes.com/1860/12/28/archives/mr-lincoln-and-negro-equality.html


“While I had not proposed to myself on this occasion to say much on that subject, yet as the question was asked me I thought I would occupy perhaps five minutes in saying something in regard to it. I will say then that I am not, nor ever have been, in favor of Read the rest of this entry »

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Dog Whistler For Sale

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, September 22, 2020

UrbanDictionary.com states this about the popular cultural meaning of “Dog Whistle:

“Dog whistle is a type of strategy of communication that sends a message that the general population will take a certain meaning from, but a certain group that is “in the know” will take away the secret, intended message. Often involves code words.

“Republicans say they want to make civil rights for gays a state issue, which is really just a dog whistle strategy for saying that they will refuse to grant equal rights on a federal level.”


Trump To White Minnesota Audience:

“You Have Good Genes.”

by Christopher Wilson – Senior Writer, Yahoo News
September 21, 2020

It’s called a “dog whistle,” a word or phrase in a speech that is unobjectionable on the surface but conveys a coded message to partisans, by analogy to high-pitched sounds that are audible to dogs but not to people. Richard Nixon leaned on it heavily during his 1968 presidential campaign, referencing “law and order” and a “war on drugs,” further codifying racial appeals from Barry Goldwater for “states’ rights” and “freedom of association.” Ronald Reagan took it to another level in 1976, demonizing a “welfare queen” who fraudulently collected $150,000 in government benefits, a barely concealed appeal to the race and class resentments of White voters toward Blacks.


Ed. NOTE: Reagan’s demagogic demonization of an ostensibly Black woman as a “welfare queen” is a highly-popularized modern-day Republican myth. Linda Taylor, a Tennessee-born White Chicago-area resident, was given the miscreant moniker by the Chicago Tribune in October 1974, which also focused upon her personal possessions – jewelry, furs, and a Cadillac – though the real story of her behavior was much worse, and more complicated than a relatively minor case of simple welfare fraud. In 2013, Josh Levin, Editorial Director for Slate, wrote an extensively detailed report of the real-life character who Reagan mythologized on his campaign trail, exclusively in an effort to capitalize upon the “shock and awe” factor to gain voter support for his candidacy. Reagan’s use of exaggeration as a raconteur was renown, and in a January 1976 campaign rally, as any good story-teller would, he embellished that character by claiming, “In Chicago, they found a woman who holds the record. She used 80 names, 30 addresses, 15 telephone numbers to collect food stamps, Social Security, veterans’ benefits for four nonexistent deceased veteran husbands, as well as welfare. Her tax-free cash income alone has been running $150,000 a year.” While much has been written about Reagan’s well-known penchant for demagoguery, little of what he claimed was true, though he made significant political hay with it by portraying one isolated problem as a wholesale representation of systemic organizational failure, which he later used to justify reducing spending on social welfare programs. While Taylor did go to prison for committing about $8000 in welfare fraud (the 2020 value of which would be about $36,500), she was more memorable for her theft-claim and bigamy scams, which frauds were discovered only years later, along with probable murder and kidnapping for which she was never indicted. Levin wrote, “For Linda Taylor, people were consumable goods, objects to cultivate, manipulate, and discard. For Ronald Reagan, Taylor was a tool to convince voters that the government was in crisis.”


By that standard, President Trump’s riff about the “good genes” found among the people of Minnesota — an 80 percent white state — wasn’t a dog whistle. It was a train whistle, folding in Trump’s long-held belief that some people, himself especially, are simply born with superior traits to others.

“You have good genes, you know that, right?” Trump said during his Saturday rally in front of a nearly all-white crowd in Bemidji. “You have good genes. A lot of it is about the genes, isn’t it, don’t you believe? The racehorse theory. You think we’re so different? You have good genes in Minnesota.”

The racehorse theory is the belief that some humans have a better genetic endowment than others, and by breeding two superior people you end up with superior offspring. The belief in eugenics, the pseudoscience of trimming out “inferior” bloodlines to increase the quality of the gene pool, is part of a long, racist history in America, from forced sterilizations to research funded by the Carnegie Institution, among other wealthy foundations. Earlier this month, charges surfaced that a doctor at an ICE facility was performing unwanted and likely unnecessary hysterectomies on detained immigrant women, which would prevent them from having more children.

“It’s not just eugenics in theory, but it’s eugenics in practice,” said Steve Silberman, a historian whose Read the rest of this entry »

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Potential Supreme Court Nominee: Right Turn Only?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, September 21, 2020

It’s said that, “a picture is worth 1000 words.”

In that case, here are two.

And 822 words.


The Supreme Court may be about to take a hard-right turn
If Donald Trump manages to install a new justice
September 21st 2020

RUTH BADER GINSBURG, the trailblazing liberal justice who died aged 87 on September 18th, will lie in repose at the top of the Supreme Court’s steps on Wednesday and Thursday. As mourners pay their respects, Donald Trump and his advisers will be huddling a few miles across town to pick a nominee to replace her. The choice, Mr Trump said on September 21st, will be revealed on Friday or Saturday — days before Ms Ginsburg is to be buried in a private ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery alongside Martin, her spouse of 56 years, an Army veteran who died in 2010.

Though she gained widespread celebrity as a lion of the liberal legal movement later in her career, Ms Ginsburg arrived at the Supreme Court as a moderate in 1993. The president who tapped her, Bill Clinton, said “she cannot be called a liberal or a conservative” as she has “proved herself too thoughtful for such labels”. Indeed, several progressive groups, including the Alliance for Justice, expressed misgivings at the time that she might not be bold enough on the bench.

Those worries gradually ebbed as Ms Ginsburg began a steady path to the left, leaving her, at the end of her career, paired with Sonia Sotomayor as the more progressive half of the liberal quartet of justices. But with Mr Trump in the White House Read the rest of this entry »

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Sen. Lindsey Graham on SCOTUS pick: “I want you to use my words against me.”

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, September 20, 2020

“I want you to use my words against me:
If there’s a Republican president in 2016,
and a vacancy occurs in the last year of the first term,
you can say ‘Lindsey Graham said,
‘Let’s let the next President,
whoever it might be,
make that nomination,”
and you could use my words against me,
and you’d be absolutely right.”

– South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham, to the Senate Judiciary Committee March, 10, 2016

https://www.c-span.org/video/?c4907933/user-clip-sc-sen-lindsey-graham-judiciary-committee

BACKGROUND: Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia had earlier died unexpectedly during his sleep while on a hunting trip in Texas on February 3, 2016, thus creating an opening on the nation’s highest court. Within an hour of the national notice of Justice Scalia’s death, Senate Republican Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) had issued a statement to the effect that he would not grant any consideration (floor vote) to any nominee from President Barack Obama.

Republican Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, had made his intentions known that he would follow the so-called “Biden Rule,” which referred to then-Delaware Senator Joe Biden’s speech on the Supreme Court confirmation process, given June 25, 1992 on the Senate floor. [C-SPAN linked video]

NOTE: Senator Biden’s verbatim remarks on Thursday, June 25, 1992 may be found in the Congressional Record, Volume 138, part 12, beginning on page 16307, and continuing through to page 16321. At that point, Senator Strom Thurmond of South Carolina began to make his responses, all of which are found on page 16321. The file may also be downloaded from this site here: Congressional Record Senate 6-25-1992 Biden–Reform of Confimation Process speech aka “Biden Rule”

In that speech, Biden argued that then-President George H.W. Bush should wait until after the November General Election to put forth any nominee to any potential Supreme Court vacancy which might arise during the summer, or if not, should establish a precedent, and nominate a moderate whom would be acceptable to the then-Democrat-controlled Senate.

Republicans later began to refer to that concept as the “Biden rule,” though Biden reiterated that he had always thought that the President and Congress should “work together to overcome partisan differences” when considering judicial nominees.

South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham, (R)

Linked above from C-SPAN are South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham’s full remarks (approximately 6 minutes) to the Senate Judiciary Committee on March 10, 2016 on the matter of consideration of SCOTUS nominees in an election year.

In his remarks, he noted that he had voted FOR Elena Kagan, and Sonia Sotomayor NOT because he agreed with them ideologically, but because he thought they were qualified.

In those same remarks, he also warned also of an increasing tendency of the Senate toward rancor, like in the House of Representatives, and of ideological partisanship accompanying judicial nominees, some of which COULD in the FUTURE be significantly detrimental to the nation because of a nominee’s unfitness for the bench, and an ideological unwillingness of the controlling party to compromise, or for an unwillingness of dissenting members in the controlling party to vote against an unqualified candidate put forth by the controlling party.


C-SPAN VIDEO DESCRIPTION: The Senate Judiciary Committee held a business meeting on whether to hold a hearing on a Supreme Court justice nomination to replace Justice Antonin Scalia. Committee Chair Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Read the rest of this entry »

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Click here for our coronavirus response.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, September 14, 2020

This now-iconic image of late country music legend Johnny Cash was made at his San Quentin Prison, California concert in 1969 by photographer Jim Marshall, who had said, “John, let’s do a shot for the warden.” The photo was relatively obscure until 1998 when Cash began working with legendary producer Rick Rubin to create Cash’s American Recordings album series, which revitalized his career shortly before his death, and introduced him to a new generation of fans in several musical genres. Rubin, who produced acts such as The Beastie Boys, Slayer, Metallica, and Tom Petty, had never produced a country artist, and quickly called it a “trendy scene” after being snubbed by Nashville. So he paid $20,000 for a full page ad in Billboard magazine which featured this image, and sarcastically read “American Recordings and Johnny Cash would like to acknowledge the Nashville music establishment and country radio for your support.”

Part of the tragic irony of this coronavirus ordeal is that in addition to the modest bailouts that have been given to Americans, and small businesses, they were also to the corporate community.

The need was tremendously underestimated, and much of the benefits, such as a boost to the unemployment compensation, concluded at the end of July… but the needs and the bills just kept coming. There was no reprieve for them, including the rent, and mortgage payments.

Banksters, you know… they love to tell you how much they love mama, babies, apple pie, and the girl next door, but when it comes time for the rubber to meet the road, suddenly, they’re the enemy who’d rather give you a shiv, than the time of day. After all, they have the money – and LOTS OF IT – and you don’t, so they call the tunes. So, pull yourself up by your bootstraps.

Now, if you think about it, that’s just a bizarre, and nonsensical maxim, because well… you’re standing in your boots, and pulling on the straps is a totally useless exercise. It’s like looking for a mythological sky hook, or a snuffleupagus.

But grit, and determination, you know. That’s the American way – and all sung to Frank Sinatra’s version of “(I did it) My Way.”

The reader should infer significant sarcasm in the remarks above.

However, there is no sarcasm in the following commentary.

In this present situation in which we find ourselves, BIG BUSINESS has, once again, made out like a bandit with the handouts given to them by Congress.

In their earnest desire to make things good for the American people, Congress has seen fit to include families and individuals this go ’round in the latest state-funded bailout of the failed economic system. And, that’s a good thing.

I purposely use the word “failed,” precisely because had it not failed, it would not have exposed the weaknesses inherent in it the way it was. But now that masses of people have “suddenly” discovered that they’re just a paycheck, or two, away from total financial ruin, and homelessness, it signifies that Read the rest of this entry »

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Today is 9/11. What’re you gonna’ do about it?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, September 11, 2020

“American 11: We have some planes. Just stay quiet, and you’ll be okay. We are returning to the airport.”

The controller only heard something unintelligible; he did not hear the specific words “we have some planes.” The next transmission came seconds later:

“American 11: Nobody move. Everything will be okay. If you try to make any moves, you’ll endanger yourself and the airplane. Just stay quiet.”

–– excerpt from The 9/11 Commission Report

Nineteen years ago today, the United States and the world was devastated when 19 al Qaeda-backed male terrorists, at the behest and guidance of their leader Osama bin Ladin (who was later killed during the Obama administration May 2, 2011 in a raid upon his compound in Abbottabad, Pakistan shortly after 0100 local time), in a coordinated effort, hijacked and deliberately flew 4 passenger jet airliners into the World Trade Center’s towers 1 and 2, the Pentagon in Washington, D.C., while a fourth crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania.

Over 3000 people were directly killed that day in those events, over 25,000 were injured, with scores of others suffering long-term health injuries, many of which have been fatal.

The weather that Tuesday morning couldn’t have been more perfect. Skies were clear up and down the entire Eastern United States and seaboard, from Maine to Mississippi – visibility was unlimited, as pilots would say – not a cloud in the sky. And then, at 0845 Eastern Time Read the rest of this entry »

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Georgia Slave Patrol

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, September 10, 2020

History is sometimes unimaginably ugly.

Especially when it concerns slavery.

By reading this, perhaps you can gain a greater understanding of how this abusive practice was effectively translated into vigilantism, and lynch mobs.

Perhaps as well, it’s easy to see the roots of the modern practice of “stop and frisk”  which was used widely in New York City, most notably under then-Mayor Mike Bloomberg, then a Republican, and other such stops and detainments simply because of the individual’s skin color, or ethnicity.

Essentially, such a procedure is a violation and denial of the Constitutionally guaranteed right of freedom of movement.


Beginning in 1757 Georgia’s colonial assembly required white landowners and residents to serve as slave patrols.

Asserting that slave insurrections must be prevented, the legislature stipulated in “An Act for Establishing and Regulating of Patrols” that groups “not exceeding seven” would work in districts twelve miles square. The statute, modeled on South Carolina’s earlier patrol law, ordered white adults to ride the roads at night, stopping all slaves they encountered and making them prove that they were engaged in lawful activities. Patrollers required slaves to produce a pass, which stated their owner’s name as well as where and when they were allowed to be away from the plantation and for how long. Patrols operated in Georgia until slavery was abolished at the end of the Civil War (1861-65).

A Georgia statute ordered White adults to ride the roads at night, stopping all slaves they encountered and making them prove that they were engaged in lawful activities. Patrollers required slaves to produce a pass, which stated their owner’s name as well as where and when they were allowed to be away from the plantation and for how long.
From The Underground Railroad, by William Still

Whites could hire substitutes to patrol for them; absentees were fined. Much of the burden of patrol duty fell to non-slaveholders, who often resented what they sometimes saw as service to the planter class. The Chatham County grand jury complained in the mid-1790s about the difficulty it faced in enforcing the patrol requirement. By the early nineteenth century it became necessary to pay people to perform what had been voluntary unpaid service. In 1819 Savannah‘s city watch received one dollar for every evening they served and shared in any reward for the forced return of fugitive slaves.

To disperse any nighttime meetings, patrollers visited places where slaves often gathered. Owners feared such gatherings allowed slaves to trade stolen goods for liquor and other forbidden items.

River patrols were organized in Savannah and Augusta to combat “midnight depredations” and to

Read the rest of this entry »

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What If Democrats Win… And So Does Trump?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, September 7, 2020

The year 2020 has been one of black swans, to be certain.

Some would say 2016 was the precursor, when Hillary won the Popular Vote, and Trump was elected.

Who saw it coming, eh?

Certainly not the pollsters.

One man did, however, and since 1984 he has CORRECTLY predicted every Presidential Election’s outcome… including Trump’s impeachment.

More on that in a moment.

But just so we’ll understand one another, the term “black swan” in this and other such contexts (not necessarily politically related, however), is the moniker given to events that are outside the context of normalcy, or the normally-expected, are exceedingly rare, difficult to predict, may often have severe consequences, and in hindsight, often have broad acceptance that the event(s) in question were characterized as obvious.

In fact, I would suggest that many who supported the Current White House Occupant now, and then, would also consider him a “black swan” president.

Consider these actual events:

As candidate Trump, on his website, he wrote in partIt’s Time To Drain The Swamp In Washington, D.C.” Interestingly, that page (https://www.donaldjtrump.com/press-releases/donald-j.-trumps-five-point-plan-for-ethics-reform) is NO LONGER ACTIVE, and must be accessed via the Internet Archive (as linked above).

His promises were fairly straight-forward (though neither drastic, nor sweeping, and have been done previously):

First: I am going to re-institute a 5-year ban on all executive branch officials lobbying the government for 5 years after they leave government service. I am going to ask Congress to pass this ban into law so that it cannot be lifted by executive order.

Second: I am going to ask Congress to institute its own 5-year ban on lobbying by former members of Congress and their staffs.

Third: I am going to expand the definition of lobbyist so we close all the loopholes that former government officials use by labeling themselves consultants and advisors when we all know they are lobbyists.

Fourth: I am going to issue a lifetime ban against senior executive branch officials lobbying on behalf of a foreign government.

Fifth: I am going to ask Congress to pass a campaign finance reform that prevents registered foreign lobbyists from raising money in American elections.

Not only will we end our government corruption, but we will end the economic stagnation.

The promise is one thing. However… the reality is much different.

Consider these ACTUAL EVENTS of his administration which call into question the veracity of his claims, and the integrity of his administration:

• His former-Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator, Scott Pruitt, was living in super-cheap housing courtesy of the wife of a man who was lobbying the EPA, and the administrator Scott Pruitt.

• Trump opened the door for 281 lobbyists to work for his administration in his first three years. Former lobbyists now run four agencies, including the departments of Defense and Energy.

• A former coal lobbyist was put in charge of regulating air pollution.

• Trump fired the State Department Inspector General at the request of the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, because the IG was investigating how Pompeo used staff from the Department of State to run personal errands for him, such as picking up takeout food orders, and the family dry cleaning.

• Pompeo spoke at the Republican National Convention, live from Jerusalem, while on a taxpayer-funded trip.

• The Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security used the White House to stage a naturalization ceremony starring the president, which became a video segment for the GOP convention.

• Trump’s White House Press Office recently announced they have compiled a “very large dossier” on Washington Post writer David Fahrenthold, after he reported that “taxpayers have paid Trump’s businesses more than $900,000 since he took office.” (Remember Nixon’s “Enemies List”?)

• Former Florida Attorney General, Pam Bondi, a Republican, attacked Read the rest of this entry »

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The Pornographer and The Preacher

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Jerry Falwell, Jr. in the Bahamas July 2019, Instagram post

If “the farmer and the cowman should be friends,” then the pornographer and the preacher should be too.

Turns out, they did become friends.

By now, if you’ve not heard the name Jerry Falwell, some might wonder what cave in Tora Bora you’ve been hiding in for the last 40 years, or so.

And, if you enjoy any late-night teevee humorists – such as Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Jimmy Fallon, Trevor Noah, Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers, Samantha Bee, Bill Maher, etc., Johnny Carson, Jay Leno, David Letterman, and Conan O’Brien are ancient history – you should continue reading.

And if you don’t, you should STILL continue reading.

Why?

Freedom.

Because you do like it that way, don’t you?

Publisher Larry Flynt with the parody ad mocking Rev. Jerry Falwell, Sr., which initiated Falwell’s lawsuit against the magazine Hustler, and Flynt, its publisher. The case wound its way to the Supreme Court, and enjoyed a rare unanimous decision in Flynt’s favor.

First, some background:

There are now three men who’ve been named Jerry Falwell:
1.) The Reverend Jerry Falwell, Sr. (1933-2007)

2.) Jerry Falwell, Jr., (b.1962) an attorney/real estate developer who is the first born, and son of Jerry Falwell

3.) Jerry “Trey” Falwell, III (b.), the first born and son of Jerry Falwell, Jr.

It’s all your fault.

The Reverend started it all.

He started Thomas Road Baptist Church in Lynchburg, Virginia.

He started the now-long-defunct religious political action group called the “Moral Majority.”

And, he started Liberty University.

He handed the keys of Liberty University to Jerry, Jr., while he handed the keys of the Thomas Road Baptist Church to son Jonathan.

The parody/satire ad in Hustler magazine that started it all. The parody is clearly marked as such at the center bottom, and is listed in the contents section as parody/satire, and states “not to be taken seriously.”

Good ol’ country boys

Like Falwell, Larry Flynt was good Southern boy, having been born in the hills and hollers of Eastern Kentucky in Lakeville, Magoffin County, while Falwell was born in Lynchburg, Virginia – about 216 miles from each other as the crow flies… or a 6+/- hours drive not-so directly East-West from each other. There’s hills and hollers throughout the area, you know. They happen to be called the Appalachians, for short. It’s hard to have a straight road in those mountainous areas.

Like Father, Not Like Son

Part of the greater underlying irony of the matter involving the Rev. Falwell, Sr., is that Read the rest of this entry »

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An Easy Answer to “Cancel Culture,” to Right-Wing Extremists, and Others

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, July 26, 2020

The removal of statuary commemorating or honoring men (typically) who were complicit in slavery has been a question in the public dialogue for many weeks and months.

Some ask, “What about George Washington and Thomas Jefferson?”

“What to do with all those statues?”

Both those men, notable for their role as founders of our nation, were slave owners.

The answer is a fairly easy one (or so I think), though it’s not one typically considered by the boogymen who raise the invented evil spectre of the so-called “cancel culture,” which is evidenced by their whipping up their non-thinking audience into a foaming-at-the-mouth froth.

A friend asked:

“Just that of something If the democrats want to get rid of all things slavery and racist, then should not the democrat party go away they start the KKK, Jim Crowe laws. What are your thoughts?” [sic]

Here’s my reply.


You raise an interesting question, one which exemplifies the complexity of the matter.

I think it’s important to reiterate that statuary of subjects about which public opinion has changed, and which has been, or considering being removed, should either be Read the rest of this entry »

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Giving Honor To Whom Honor Is Not Due

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Where are statues to Adolph Hitler Hermann Göring, Josef Mengele, or the Third Reich ?

There are over 1,747 public symbols to honor the Confederacy.

Statues, monuments, schools, buildings, parks, courthouse & government office grounds, counties/municipalities, roads, holidays, flags, scholarships, songs, and other things have all been named to dignify, commemorate, and honor traitorous loser Confederates.

It’s past time for the South – and the rest of the nation – to bury the myth of the Lost Cause once and for all.¹ ² ³ ⁴

In order to more fully understand the artwork, it must be placed in a proper context to be better interpreted. Further, it provides opportunity for preservation and care.

We see that in the many National Parks and on-site museums at Civil War battlefield sites. So placing such statuary in a museum, or other area -and- given a much more full explanation of the artist, the era, and the events commemorated, we can more fully understand the thing which is being interpreted. Andrew Jackson’s homeplace “The Hermitage” is such an example, and I have visited the site which is a park, museum, and interpretive center, along with other Civil War battlefield sites which also have museums and interpretive centers.

To simply place a thing in the public square with a plaque is a disservice to the art, and the artist, and to those who would interpret it – the viewers.

“Confederate markers do not provide a comprehensive look at the Civil War but rather focus narrowly on the Confederate war effort. In 2008, the Georgia Historical Society conducted a review of the more than 900 Civil War markers in the state. It found that “over 90 percent of the existing markers dealt strictly with military topics, leaving vast segments of the Civil War story untold — with almost no markers describing the war’s impact on civilians, politics, industry, the home front, African Americans, or women.””

Cold Harbor, Va. African Americans collecting bones of soldiers killed in the battle. Photographed by John Reekie, April 1865. Library of Congress. https://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/2018666599/ Title: [Cold Harbor, Va. African Americans collecting bones of soldiers killed in the battle] Creator(s): Reekie, John, photographer Date Created/Published: 1865 April. Medium: 1 negative : glass, wet collodion. Summary: Photograph from the main eastern theater of war, Grant’s Wilderness Campaign, May-June 1864. Reproduction Number: LC-DIG-cwpb-04324 (digital file from original neg.) LC-B8171-7926 (b&w film neg.) Rights Advisory: No known restrictions on publication. For information, see “Civil war photographs, 1861-1865,”(http://www.loc.gov/rr/print/res/120_cwar.html) Call Number: LC-B817- 7926 [P&P] LOT 4167-B (corresponding photographic print) Repository: Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division Washington, D.C. 20540 USA https://hdl.loc.gov/loc.pnp/pp.print

The term Lost Cause first appeared in the title of an 1866 book by the historian Edward A. Pollard, The Lost Cause: A New Southern History of the War of the Confederates. However, it was the articles written for the Southern Historical Society by Lt. Gen. Jubal A. Early in the 1870s that established the Lost Cause as a long-lasting literary and cultural phenomenon.

Early’s original inspiration for his views may have come from General Robert E. Lee.  In his farewell order to the Army of Northern Virginia, Lee spoke of the “overwhelming resources and numbers” that the Confederate army fought against.

The Lost Cause theme was taken up by memorial associations such as the United Confederate Veterans and the United Daughters of the Confederacy. The Lost Cause helped Southerners to cope with the social, political, and economic changes after the Civil War especially in the oppressive Reconstruction era.

Some of the main tenets of the Lost Cause movement were that:

  • Confederate generals such as Lee and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson represented the virtues of Southern nobility. This nobility was contrast most significantly in comparisons between U.S. Grant and Lee. The Northern generals, were characterized as men with low moral standards who engaged in vicious campaigns against Southern civilians such as Sherman’s March to the Sea and Philip Sheridan’s burning of the Shenandoah Valley in the Valley Campaigns of 1864.
  • Losses on the battlefield were Read the rest of this entry »

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All The Gold In California

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, July 6, 2020

Y’know… one thing which I appreciate about the Bloomberg site, is that they don’t seem to be exclusively limited to interests of business, per se.

That is, matters of business MUST, and do, involve people – as employees, and customers – and without either of those two groups of people, no business would exist.

For many years – I don’t know how many, but for a very L – O – N – G time – I have taken exception to, and disagreed with the statement that “the customer is the most important person in any business.”

From my perch in the catbird seat, I demurred, and stated that the EMPLOYEE is the most important person in any business, because a disgruntled employee can cost beaucoup bucks in lost sales/revenues. And many disgruntled employees will sink a company – regardless of who is at the helm. That’s because the adage is true, that the sailors run the ship, not the captain. And they allow the captain to do so (to lead them) by their consent – the consent of the governed. A mutiny is a very serious matter.

Point being, is that happy employees make happy customers, and happy customers buy things, and say good things about the company, and the employees.

It was only relatively recently that I learned that Sir Richard Branson – Founder of the Virgin Group, a privately-held multinational venture capitol conglomerate – says the same thing, that employees are the most important people in any business.

The irony of ironies is that despite the political differences in the many seemingly disparate voices today, is that Republicans, Democrats, and all others, want the same thing: A good job, a decent place to live, secure transportation, ability to feed themselves and their family, education for their children, and to be healthy enough to enjoy it all. Food, clothing, and shelter… those are not hard things to understand. Neither are they difficult to obtain. They’re not like the mythical “unobtainium.”

But we the people, despite what some may say otherwise, are not in a good place in this nation for the long-haul. What has happened, is that within our lifetimes, we the people have been sold a bill of false goods that somehow less is more, that the larger and more populous our nation becomes (we’re right at 330,000,000 – the third most populous on Earth, behind China and India, respectively each with over 1 BILLION more than us), the smaller the government will become, that somehow, mysteriously or magically, at some point, it will eventually disappear – because we’ll all be able to self-govern and therefore do not need external governance.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

And yet, that’s PRECISELY what “the Great Communicator” Ronald Reagan said in his first Inaugural Address immediately after he proclaimed that “government is the problem.”

“In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem. From time to time we’ve been tempted to believe that society has become too complex to be managed by self-rule, that government by an elite group is superior to government for, by, and of the people. Well, if no one among us is capable of governing himself, then who among us has the capacity to govern someone else? All of us together, in and out of government, must bear the burden. The solutions we seek must be equitable, with no one group singled out to pay a higher price.”

Now, my point is NOT to “bash Regan” per se, but to point out the obvious – which is that Read the rest of this entry »

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Honoring John C. Calhoun Community College, Decatur, Alabama

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, July 2, 2020

John C. Calhoun…

The very name brings chills to those who hear it mentioned.

And it should.

Calhoun was not merely a segregationist, but an open and unashamed advocate of slavery.

On Monday, February 6, 1837, on the floor of the United States Senate, John C. Calhoun of South Carolina delivered a speech in which he characterized slavery as “a positive good.”

However, Senator Calhoun’s speech before the Senate is largely absent from the official record, even though there are some extant authenticating sources.

That is, the official record of the proceedings in that era was called “Congressional Globe” and as the predecessor to the modern “Congressional Record” (a verbatim document which succeeded the Globe) it is substantially different, insofar as the Globe’s contents are NOT a verbatim source (like the Record is today), and instead, are the characterizations of a recorder(s), and read much like the minutes of a meeting.

Today, in the Congressional Record, one can read the exact words spoken by any person from the floor of either chamber – House, or Senate.

For that era however, the debates of Congress are found in the Congressional Globe, and for the date in question, the record of the debate may be found here: https://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=llcg&fileName=003/llcg003.db&recNum=172.

24th Congress 2nd Session, Congressional Globe Appendix, Monday, February 6, 1837

However again, fortunately there is a source which does contain the speech. That source is the 1843 book “Speeches of John C. Calhoun: Delivered in the Congress of the United States from 1811 to the present time” which may be found in its entirety on the Internet Archive website here: https://archive.org/details/speechesofjohncc00incalh/page/222/mode/2up?q=a+good-a+positive+good.

Recently, the City of Charleston, South Carolina, which for years had Read the rest of this entry »

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Celebrating Freedom On Juneteenth

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, June 22, 2020

On June 19, 1865, U.S. Army Major General Gordon Granger, along with his command, arrived in Galveston, in the then-District of Texas, he issued General Orders No. 3, and that day read aloud the following:

“The people of Texas are informed that,
in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States,
all slaves are free.
This involves an absolute equality of personal rights and rights of property between former masters and slaves,
and the connection heretofore existing between them becomes that between employer and hired labor.
The freedmen are advised to remain quietly at their present homes and work for wages.
They are informed that they will not be allowed to collect at military posts and that they will not be supported in idleness either there or elsewhere.”

This past Friday, 19 June 2020, marked the 155th anniversary of Juneteenth, a holiday celebrated in 46 states, and the District of Columbia, commemorating the abolition of slavery which occurs annually on June 19.

The date actually refers not to the end of legal slavery in the United States, but to the gap in time after the Emancipation Proclamation, and refers to the date the U.S. Army’s Major General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston, in the then-District of Texas and made an official proclamation of the news that Lincoln had freed slaves in the 10 secessionist rebel Confederate states through the Emancipation Proclamation (EP).

The EP was not applicable to the four border slave states that were not in rebellion – Kentucky, Maryland, Delaware, and Missouri.

To be certain, as a societal evil, slavery was and remains despicably abhorrent, and had long been practiced by humanity throughout history. Efforts to eradicate slavery in the United States were fraught with legal difficulties, most which seriously complicated matters, and placed the status of the newly emerging and growing nation known as the United States in perilous jeopardy.

A statue depicts a man holding the state law that made Juneteenth a state holiday is shown Wednesday, June 17, 2020, in Galveston, Texas. The inscription on the statue reads “On June 19, 1865, at the close of the Civil War, U.S. Army General Gordon Granger issued an order in Galveston stating that the 1863 Emancipation Proclamation was in effect. That event, later known as “Juneteenth,” marked the end of slavery in Texas. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)

An interesting feature, is the date and timing of General Orders No. 3, which reinforced, and supported the Emancipation Proclamation.

The Emancipation Proclamation – also known as “Proclamation 95” – was initially issued by Read the rest of this entry »

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Is DUI Worthy Of Death?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, June 15, 2020

America’s historical laxity on DWI/DUI is infamous.

In some nations, as recently as 1978/9, anecdote suggests that DUI offenders in some nations may have been summarily executed… without trial.

But civilization, you know.

And due process.

There’s something to be said for them both.

And yet, due process is NOT laxity on law.

Consider some contemporary penalties for inebriated drivers in other nations:

  • In Australia, the names of intoxicated drivers are sent to the local paper and are printed under the heading: “He’s drunk and in jail”.
  • In England, drunk drivers face a one-year suspension of license, a $250 fine, and one year in jail.
  • In France, there is a three-year loss of license, one year in jail, and a $1,000 fine.
  • In Malaysia, the driver is jailed. If he is married, his wife is jailed, too.
  • In Norway, the penalty is three weeks in jail at hard labor and one year loss of license. With a second offense within five years, the license is revoked for life.In Russia, the license is revoked for life.
  • In South Africa, the penalty is a ten-year prison sentence and the equivalent of $10,000 fine, or both.
  • In Turkey, drunks are taken ten miles from town by the police and forced to walk back under escort.

Nevertheless, that I’m aware, there’s little-to-no evidence to suggest that DUI is a capital offense – at least in America.

Or, is there?

There’s the late Rayshard Brooks of Atlanta, you know.

He was summarily executed – shot in the back – by Atlanta police officers for DUI.

Yeah.

And he wasn’t even driving.

That’s an “inconvenient truth” which some don’t want to talk about.

And then, I think about what John Adams (1735 – 1826) – American Diplomat, 2nd POTUS, father of John Quincy Adams, and “founding father” of the United States – said at a December 1770 mass murder trial in which he was the Attorney for the Defense.

“Facts are stubborn things;
and whatever may be our wishes, our inclinations,
or the dictates of our passion,
they cannot alter the state of facts and evidence.”

— John Adams, statement made in “Argument in Defense of the Soldiers in the Boston Massacre Trials,” December 1770

At the time, Adams was aged 35.

And the defendants whom were accused of murder?

They were British soldiers of the 29th Regiment under the command an Irishman, Captain Thomas Preston.

Along with 4 civilians, the soldiers accused of murder were William Wemms, James Hartigan, William McCauley, Hugh White, Matthew Kilroy, William Warren, John Carrol and Hugh Montgomery.

The deceased victims of the event colloquially known as the “Boston Massacre” were Samuel Gray, Samuel Maverick, James Coldwell and Crispus Attucks, all who died immediately. Patrick Carr, who was wounded, died 9 days later.

The circumstances of the situation were that, late on the night of Monday, March 5, 1770, a crowd had gathered in front of the Customs House and confronted 8 British soldiers and Captain Preston. The soldiers, armed with muskets fitted with bayonets, formed a semi-circle as the crowd dared them to shoot. The scene was tense, and an unknown man in the crowd threw a club which struck a soldier, whereupon a shot was fired, which was followed by about 6 seconds of silence, followed by a volley of several shots. Many were wounded, including some who died instantly.

Enraged that troops under his command had fired without his order, Captain Preston commanded them to cease fire. Upon restoration of order, the troops departed the scene unscathed, leaving the peaceful civilian protesters feeling powerless.

Shortly, additional reinforcement British troops arrived on scene, which again escalated tensions, which had been significantly reduced following Captain Preston’s orders. Violence again seemed impending, but when Thomas Hutchinson made a quick speech from the balcony of the Town House guaranteeing that Captain Preston and his troops would be tried in court, the peaceful protesters were assuaged, the situation was thereby de-escalated, and the crowd dispersed.

According to the magistrate’s order, Captain Preston and the eight soldiers were to be tried separately.

John Adams headed the defense team, and with Josiah Quincy, the younger brother of Read the rest of this entry »

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Donald Trump… Bless his heart.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Two thoughts.

1.) I am no fan of the current President.

2.) The Current White House Occupant is not only a blithering idiot, and utter incompetent, but is a dictatorially-inclined abuser and bully.

That’s why he demands “loyalty,” rather than honesty and expertise. He micromanages, and fires anyone whom has any disagreement with him – no matter how minuscule.

And to be certain, as I have maintained for years, and continue to maintain, I am not now, nor have I ever been a member of any political party. I’m a GDI – God Damn Independent.

That’s also why ALL polls relating to his job performance/approval rating during the past 4 years have ONLY briefly – March 25 – April 6 this year, and May 15 – 19 – been above 46%.

That’s 12 + 5 days = 17 days. Only 17 days out of 1618 calendar days. Expressed as a percentage, that’s 1.0506%.  In 4 years 5 months 5 days, that’s only 1 day out of every 95 days has been a day in which he had the approval of more than a minority of Americans – 46% – not even a plurality.

The majority – 54% – have never approved of his performance.

Not even once.

The highest his approval rating has been is 47.4% which occurred, oddly enough, on April 1, 2020.

Most of the time, his approval rating has floated between 40% and 44%. It’s now at 42.3%, with the lowest being 37.1% on December 16, 2017. Even his beloved Fox News has found that 1207 Registered Voters who were polled May 17-20 this year overwhelmingly disapproved of him by a 10 point margin, 44 to 54.

In fact, in the totality of all polls conducted since the term of his presidency began, by well-known, highly respected, and legitimate polling organizations such as Gallup, Pew Research, Marist College, Quinnipiac University, Harvard-Harris, Reuters-Ipsos, Emerson College Polling, Monmouth University Polling Institute, etc., the OVERWHELMING and EXCEEDINGLY VAST MAJORITY of all polls conducted since the first one which was done by Reuters from the period 1/20-1/24, NONE have ever been over 3 %age points spread.

So, it’s not even close.

But moreover, the claims made about him – that he is racist, and bigoted – merit examination, and warrant genuinely serious consideration.

And it is in that vein in which we must ponder the question:

Is Donald Trump racist?

The aphorism “the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree” is apropos here, because his late father, Fred J. Trump, was a well-known racist, and was once arrested at a Ku Klux Klan rally in New York City. And though at the time, it was not “front-page news,” per se, the report of his arrest was a matter of record which was published in the New York Times, and is validated by now-public Census records which verify his address, which was also published in the story.

A Washington Post story about the matter dated February 29, 2016 by Philip Bump, National Correspondent, stated in part, that:

“The predication for the Klan to march, according to a flier passed around Jamaica beforehand, was that “Native-born Protestant Americans” were being “assaulted by Roman Catholic police of New York City.” “Liberty and Democracy have been trampled upon,” it continued, “when native-born Protestant Americans dare to organize to protect one flag, the American flag; one school, the public school; and one language, the English language.”

“It’s not clear from the context what role Fred Trump played in the brawl. The news article simply notes that seven men were arrested in the “near-riot of the parade,” all of whom were represented by the same lawyers.”

Fred Trump, Donald Trump’s father, was arrested at a Ku Klux Klan rally in New York City, on Memorial Day 1927. “Brawls erupted in New York led by sympathizers of the Italian fascist movement and the Ku Klux Klan. In the fascist brawl, which took place in the Bronx, two Italian men were killed by anti-fascists. In Queens, 1,000 white-robed Klansmen marched through the Jamaica neighborhood, eventually spurring an all-out brawl in which seven men were arrested. One of those arrested was Fred Trump of 175-24 Devonshire Rd. in Jamaica.”

A contemporaneous story published about the matter in the “Daily Star noted that Trump was detained “on a charge of refusing to disperse from a parade when ordered to do so.””

As well, when he was aged 27, Donald found himself – along with his father – named in a lawsuit by the U.S. Department of Justice.

The charge?

Racial discrimination in housing practices.

Fred Trump, as enumerated in the 1930 U.S. Census. The address listed for “Fred C. Trump” is the same address given for Fred Trump in the 1927 story of his arrest at a KKK rally in the Jamaica neighborhood of New York City.

“In October 1973, the government accused Fred and Donald Trump of violations of the Fair Housing Act of 1968 at 39 Trump-built-and managed buildings in Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island.

“The Trumps were drowning in evidence of systematic racial discrimination. On at least seven occasions, prospective tenants had filed complaints against the Trumps with the human rights commission, alleging racially discriminatory patterns and practices. 

“Investigative journalist Wayne Barrett, writing in the Village Voice, reported that the evidence of racial discrimination against the Trumps was overwhelming.”

For 2 years, the Trumps fought the suit with an attorney whom Donald met in a bar while cruising for sex – “Le Club, located on 55th Street on the Upper East Side of Manhattan, an exclusive watering hole for demimondaine café society” – Roy Cohn.



“During their 63 years of marriage, Fred carried on a long-term affair with his secretary, according to Burleigh [journalist Nina Burleigh in her book Golden Handcuffs: The Secret History of Trump’s Women], who writes that Fred “was such a man of habit that he took her to lunch at the same Italian place near his office in Brooklyn for years.” Trump biographer Harry Hurt wrote that Fred was nicknamed “King of Miami Beach” for his rampant philandering in South Florida back in the day. But Donald himself judged it as a strong union: “I always told my father I made more money than him but he had a very successful marriage, he really did.”

– Elise Jordan, “How Donald Trump’s Mother Did—and Didn’t—Shape His Life,” Vanity Fair, May 7, 2020

From: “Crossing the Line: How Donald Trump Behaved With Women in Private,” by Michael Barbaro and Megan Twohey, May 14, 2016, New York Times

Again, the apple doesn’t fall too far from the tree.

Some have asserted that support of Trump among the Black/minority community is/was significant, and helped in great part to put him into the White House. There’s no evidence to support that claim.

One only need examine his administration for STRONG anecdotal evidence. Dr. Ben Carson, MD is the token Black in his administration, and serves as head of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) – an agency often associated and affiliated with minorities.

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Southern Super Villain: William T. “Bloody Bill” Anderson

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, May 28, 2020

As I’ve pondered the often tragic events of the past several days, weeks, and months of news items concerning the deaths and abuses of men – mostly, but of women as well – of color in our country, from states as far south as Georgia, to as far north in Minnesota, I weep.

When I see, read, and hear of deaths which would otherwise be called “murder” and “assault” at the hands of law-enforcement officials, by every day citizens, retired law enforcement officers, and even mere civilians in public parks, I not only cringe, but throw up in my mouth just a little bit.

The not-so-subtle cheapening of human life, particularly of Black lives, is not merely disgusting, it is fully and completely immoral and entirely irreligious, for it is neither pietistic, and certainly not humanistic.

“The Lost Cause” title page, 1866

And when I think about how and why we got to this point, and wonder how the demonic deification of diabolical deeds, and grandiose glorification of such evil and treachery occurred, I consider “The Lost Cause” as the root cause. It is the single-most practical perpetuation of all such wickedness which continues to live and roam among us.

In a much earlier entry entitled “Terrorism In the South,” and dated October 6, 2016, I wrote about some survivors of the American Civil War, whom have been long dead.

While I confess to not being a student of the Civil War, I do take a modest passing interest in a backgrounder of some of its lesser-known facts, such as the romanticizing efforts of “The Lost Cause” which was, and remains, an attempt to ennoble the matter of slavery, its savageries, and the war by Southerners which sought to perpetuate it.

The Encyclopedia of Alabama writes this in part about The Lost Cause:

The term “Lost Cause” emerged at the end of the Civil War when Edward Pollard, editor of the Richmond Examiner, popularized it with his book The Lost Cause, which chronicled the Confederacy’s demise. The term swiftly came into common use as a reference not only to military defeat, but defeat of the “southern way of life”—a phrase that generally referred to the South of the antebellum period, when plantation slavery was still intact. Since the late nineteenth century, historians have used the term “Lost Cause” to describe a particular belief system as well as commemorative activities that occurred in the South for decades after the Civil War. Commonly held beliefs were that the war was fought over states’ rights and not slavery, that slavery was a benevolent institution that offered Christianity to African “savages,” and that the war was a just cause in the eyes of God. Commemorative activities included erecting Confederate monuments and celebrating Confederate Memorial Day.

Jefferson Davis, President of the Confederacy; frontispiece to author Edward A. Pollard’s 1866 book The Lost Cause

When describing the Lost Cause, historians have employed the terms “myth,” “cult,” “civil religion,” “Confederate tradition,” and “celebration” to explain this southern phenomenon. Many of these terms are used interchangeably, but they all refer to a conservative movement in the postwar South that was steeped in the agrarian traditions of the Old South and that complicated efforts to create a “New South.” For diehard believers in the Lost Cause, the term New South was repugnant and implied that there was something wrong with the values and traditions of the antebellum past. For individuals devoted to the idea of the Lost Cause, the Old South still served as a model for race relations (blacks should be deferential to whites as under slavery), gender roles (women should be deferential to their fathers, brothers, and husbands), and class interactions (poor whites should defer to wealthier whites). Moreover, individuals believed that the Confederacy, which sought to preserve the southern way of life, should be respected and its heroes, as well as its heroines, should be revered. Indeed, white southerners, for whom the Lost Cause was sacred, argued that the members of the Confederate generation fought for a just cause—states’ rights—and were to be honored for their sacrifices in defense of constitutional principle.

One could think of The Lost Cause as a “We’ve always done it this way” kind of thinking – which ironically, are also “The Last Six Words of a Dying Organization.”

Nevertheless, as many historians note, photographs of individuals from that era are exceedingly rare, as are those of the more infamous individuals such as William T. “Bloody Bill” Anderson, a notoriously wicked, savagely brutal, wantonly profligate, dissolutely treacherous guerilla terrorist gang leader of Confederate mercenaries who is widely thought to have personally killed at least 52 human beings, based upon a cord he kept in his pocket, which when found upon his corpse, is reputed to have had as many number of knots in its length.

You could think of “Bloody Bill” Anderson as the “MS-13 of the Civil War.”

To describe his actions and life as reprehensibly reprobate, cravenly pusillanimous, even proliferately profligate, ignominious and pervasive is not strong enough to convey the utter depths of depravity of his darkened soul.

As a young man aged 22, he quickly became a scumbag of the First Order by making money stealing and selling horses – a type of automobile theft of the antiquated day – all along the Santa Fe Trail, as far away as New Mexico.

After “Bloody Bill” Anderson’s father’s death – he was shot in self defense by A.I. Baker, a Confederate-sympathizing judge in the Council Grove, Kansas area, after being threatened by him because the judge had issued an arrest warrant for the son for horse theft after numerous complaints by area ranchers and farmers – he doubled down and became a murdering thief, wantonly hijacking and murdering travelers, stagecoaches, United States soldiers and civilians in and around Missouri.

His loyalty was to no one but himself, and was known to have remarked that he sought to fight as a Confederate mercenary – for money, rather than for principle, or fealty.

Bloody Bill shortly became mixed up with another ne’er-do-well guerilla leader named William Clarke Quantrill around May 1863, who headed the equally infamous guerilla terrorist group Quantrill’s Raiders, to which the equally infamous criminal brother duo of Frank and Jesse James briefly belonged. They, along with Cole Younger and his brothers Jim, John and Bob Younger, another notorious criminal cabal who were also part of Quantrill’s Raiders, and following the Civil War, joined with Jesse’s brother Frank James, to rob trains.

And, believe it, or not, perversely enough, there is a William Clarke Quantrill Society, which reveres the man, and his criminal cabal outlaws, and Read the rest of this entry »

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America’s Grocery Supply Chain Is Healthy

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, March 23, 2020

With COVID-19 cornoavirus proliferating in the United States, and abroad, some grocery shoppers have begun panic purchasing. That behavior is not limited to Americans. Shoppers in other nations have also begun to panic purchase, which in turn, makes it difficult for those who genuinely need groceries to obtain them.

And at least one story has been published about people not being able to purchase much-needed food items, including one about a 51-year-old Critical Care Nurse in England who, after a 48-hour shift, wasn’t able to find any groceries for herself.

“Just stop it please”: Tearful Nurse urges the public to stop panic buying food after she was unable to buy basic items following a 48-hour shift.

Top Out of Stock Categories of grocery store items

There are other readily-observable phenomenological (def. a “method of inquiry concerned with the perception and experience of objects and events as the basis for the investigation of reality”) matters, and events, at work. One such matter is the “80-20 rule.”

Also known as the Pareto Principle, after the Italian economist and sociologist Vilfredo Pareto (1848-1923) who first described it, the rule, or principle certainly applies in this scenario.

Simply put, as it applies to consumption, the rule states that 80% of your product sales will come from 20% of your customers – or, if you prefer, 80% of consequences come from 20% of the causes, which thus asserts an unequal relationship between inputs (cause), and outputs (effect).

The 80/20 rule is borne out also by anecdotal observation, in which an Assistant Grocery Store Manager recently remarked to me that, “There are others who can’t buy things, because the same people are lining up at 6AM when the truck arrives and are buying basketfuls of the same things every time,” adding that, “It’s obviously way more than they need.”

Or, to put it another way, the suffering of 80% of the people who don’t have access to regularly-purchased items, is caused by 20% of the population. Things like that kinda’ gives you pause for thought, doesn’t it?

Further anecdotal evidence may be found among shoppers themselves, who report similarly, which is that a relatively small number of people are purchasing an inordinate quantity of select items, whatever they may be, and thus rapidly depleting available stock and inventories.

Kroger Spokesperson, Melissa Eads in Nashville, TN said that since Thursday, March 12, 2020, Kroger stores have seen a significant increase in the number of customers, and the quantities they’re purchasing. Kroger grocery store officials estimate that most customers are buying at least five times what they would normally buy.

And to buttress the idea that America’s grocery supply chain is safe, and secure, Greg Ferrara, President & CEO of the National Grocers Association has written that, amidst a national profusion of panic purchasing, that:

Food supplies are plentiful throughout the supply chain and are being replenished continuously to meet the demand. Although some consumers may experience temporary out of stocks in some categories or brands, such as hand sanitizer and paper goods, stores are re-filling shelves as quickly as possible. Supermarket associates are working diligently to quickly restock shelves and clean stores. And, while consumers may find purchase limits on some products that are in high demand, such as toilet paper and cleaning supplies, this is simply to ensure as many customers as possible are able to purchase what they need.”

But since when do people give heed to sound advice, eh?

After all, it was a Wisconsin Republican Congressman and Johnny Carson who were the cause of the “Toilet Paper” shortage scare in American, dating back to December 1973… and hasn’t shown any signs of letting up.

Following are industry observations about the grocery industry – or, more accurately as Consumer Behavior – in relation to COVID-19.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Are you ready? FOUR MORE YEARS OF TRUMP

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Official Portrait, President Donald Trump-R (b.1946)

Can you say…

“FOUR MORE YEARS”?

Increasingly, it looks like it’s gonna’ be yet ANOTHER Popular Vote win, and Electoral College loss for the Democrats in 2020.

And, as I have said, in a very perverse way, DT will have been VERY good for America, precisely because his abuses and corruption have pointed out every area of weakness in our laws pertaining to the Office of the President and of governmental operations, but because another recession is coming on, as Wall Street has warned, and is – once again – demonstrating that corruption by Wall $treet, the Banksters, and BIG INSURANCE still harms America.

And we have so MANY, MANY needs!

Reform of our voting systems, so that they can’t be hacked, manipulated, or gerrymandered.

So that life-saving, life-giving medications are readily and freely available to ALL The People.

So that people are AUTOMATICALLY Registered to Vote, and Vote by U.S. Postal Service mail is enabled in ALL 50 states.

So that once again, American Foreign Policy no longer unwantedly meddles in other nations’ internal affairs.

So that Healthcare is readily available to EVERYONE, not just those in cities or suburbs, and that Hospitals are OPENED and not closed.

So that The People can TRULY vote FOR their Presidential candidate of choice by ELIMINATING the Electoral College.

So that Schools and Education are not merely “adequately” funded, but have MORE than enough.

So that racist and discriminatory practices in voting registrations and purges are made ILLEGAL.

So that our Congress (House & Senate) is Term Limited to 20 years TOTAL service.

So that the security, safety, and Read the rest of this entry »

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“Socialism” : A Tired, Old, Republican Punching Bag For Over 110 Years

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, March 2, 2020

Formerly entitled: “Bernie Sanders Said…


On November 19, 2015, Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders addressed a crowd at Georgetown University.

It was not a campaign rally.

In the conclusion of his speech, he said:

“So the next time you hear me attacked as a socialist, remember this:

“I don’t believe government should own the means of production, but I do believe that the middle class and the working families who produce the wealth of America deserve a fair deal.

“I believe in private companies that thrive and invest and grow in America instead of shipping jobs and profits overseas.

“I believe that most Americans can pay lower taxes – if hedge fund managers who make billions manipulating the marketplace finally pay the taxes they should.

“I don’t believe in special treatment for the top 1%, but I do believe in equal treatment for African-Americans who are right to proclaim the moral principle that Black Lives Matter.

“I despise appeals to nativism and prejudice, and I do believe in immigration reform that gives Hispanics and others a pathway to citizenship and a better life.

“I don’t believe in some foreign “ism”, but I believe deeply in American idealism.

“I’m not running for president because it’s my turn, but because it’s the turn of all of us to live in a nation of hope and opportunity not for some, not for the few, but for all.

“No one understood better than FDR the connection between American strength at home and our ability to defend America at home and across the world. That is why he proposed a second Bill of Rights in 1944, and said in that State of the Union:

““America’s own rightful place in the world depends in large part upon how fully these and similar rights have been carried into practice for all our citizens. For unless there is security here at home there cannot be lasting peace in the world.”

“I’m not running to pursue reckless adventures abroad, but to rebuild America’s strength at home. I will never hesitate to defend this nation, but I will never send our sons and daughters to war under false pretense or pretenses or into dubious battles with no end in sight.”

Vermont U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders, Georgetown University, November 19, 2015


The word ‘socialism’ has been used for many years as a fear tactic to persuade people to do, or not do, what the one who is using the word wants them to do, or not do. It’s been around at least as long as since 1931 – and likely, much longer. Perhaps 20 years, or more.

A cursory search of the Congressional Record (part 1 volume 45, p270) showed that in the 1910 Congress, in the Second Session, on December 20, Representative Frank Wheeler Mondell (1860-1939), a Republican, said in part the following:

“Advanced with the extraordinary argument that to take authority from the people locally and lodge it with a federal bureau is “saving” something for “all the people” and from the” interests,” and backed by the demand of a certain section of the press, inspired by socialistic government bureaus, the propaganda has much influence with some legislators.”

Demonizing “the press,” demonizing “socialistic government bureaus,” and claiming it’s all “propaganda.”

Wow.

That stuff reads like it was ripped from today’s headlines in 2020, over 110 years later.

Grand OLD Party, indeed.

Same… tired… old… rhetoric.

But, let’s continue searching in that year’s record.

Senator Porter McCumber (1858-1933), a Republican from Nebraska, addressed that body on February 4, 1910 and as found on page 1481, is recorded to have said in part, Read the rest of this entry »

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Bernie Sanders Addressed Georgetown University On Democratic Socialism

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, February 29, 2020

Try as they might, pundit and naysayers of most all stripe continue to castigate, demonize, and mischaracterize Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders as a “socialist” in the “classical” sense.

The “classical” sense, or definition of “socialism” is when a government controls the means -and- the method of production. Period. End of conversation.

In the United States, there has NEVER been, nor will there ever be, any “government factory.”

So, there’s that to consider.

But, think about the coins and currency (money) in your pocket.

You might have an argument for calling it “socialist,” because it’s
• made by the government,
• on government-owned machines,
• using government-owned paper, ink, and metals,
• by government employees, and is effectively
• owned by the government (on temporary “loan” to you, though it is in actuality, a promissory note, itself – but monetary theory is a topic for discussion another day).

BUT… the reason it’s NOT socialist is that EVERYTHING – the inks, the metals, the papers, the stamping and printing machines… EVERYTHING – was obtained by Publicly Bid Open Contracts FROM THE PRIVATE SECTOR.

Yeah.

So, there’s also that to consider.

And then, there’s our military… which issues official government-owned uniforms to government employees, who work using government-owned equipment, and their healthcare – which is given at NO COST TO THEM -and- TO THEIR FAMILY MEMBERS – using government-owned equipment, in government-owned healthcare facilities and hospitals, with government-owned-and-provided medicines.

And, in that scenario, the government employees control the means –and– the method of production, per se. It’s a “socialist” system if ever there was one!

But,, once again, ALL of those materials, and all the manpower to perform ALL those functions COMES FROM THE PRIVATE SECTOR via Publicly Bid Open Contracts.

Yeah.

So, there’s that to consider, as well.

Guess it must not be “socialism,” eh?

At least since 1931 (and likely at least 20 years or so earlier), the great “demon” of socialism has been a source of name-calling and fear-baiting in government.

The word “socialism” has been tossed around more than a Caesar’s Salad with oil and vinegar dressing. And, it’s only done for political hay-making purposes. In other words, it’s much like “The Boy Who Cried ‘WOLF!'”

Here are two examples from the Congressional Record of 1931:

Congressional Record–Senate, 28Feb1931, p6448

You see, in October 1917, something happened in Russia, and that country changed its name, which included the word “socialist” in it. Thereafter, it was easy to demonize the word, simply because of association with what happened in Russia.

The “something” that happened in Russia was the “October Revolution,” (i.e., the Russian Revolution) in which Vladimir Lenin (1870-1924) and his merry band of men (mostly) known as the Bolsheviks, overthrew the Russian government, which at the time had been long ruled by Czars from the Romanov family, the royal family of Russia – which was a 300-year long imperial dynasty (the 2nd in Russian history), and one of ineptitude, nepotism, incompetence, excess, corruption, and hubris – which in all fairness, also included a few successes, but exceedingly few.

Congressional Record – House 2March31 p6850

It was actually the 2nd (or 3rd, depending upon what source you read) that year, with the first being in March (or February, again, depending upon what source you read). An earlier revolution in 1905 had also happened, and the situation and circumstances of the that revolution was culminated in the 1917 revolutions. Riots, work stoppages, strikes, food shortages, economic upheaval, lack of industrialization, were almost commonplace, and social upheaval was in the air, and in the hearts and minds of Russian civilians.

In the early 1900’s, Russia was one of the most impoverished nations in the world, and most European countries, and did much of the world, viewed Russia as being a backwards, and undeveloped nation, which was also plagued with high poverty, among other social ills. It was only a relatively few years earlier, in 1861, that serfdom had been made illegal in Russia, though it had been illegal in Europe for much longer.

“Serfdom” is a practice of the landed gentry (wealthy real estate/properly owners) in which indentured servitude of the lowest social class members, called “serfs,” occurred, though which the impoverished serfs were in some way indebted to the land owner, typically in exchange for the privilege of working a plot of land for their own purposes, which in more modern times in America is called share-cropping. After serfdom was outlawed, the former serfs had freedom to organize, and they did.

Industrialization, which occurred much later in Russia than in other nations, was the harbinger of significant social change. Between 1890 and 1910, the populations of the well-known cities St. Petersburg, and Moscow, doubled in size. Such overcrowding brought along other social ills such as destitute living conditions for industrial workers, and with it, disease.

Decisions to grow agricultural products in the harsh northern Russian climes were similarly fraught with difficulty, and production was stymied, which in turn brought about food shortages, and their accompanying ills. In conjunction with the Crimean War (1854-56) arising from Russian pressure on Turkey which directly threatened British commercial and strategic interests in the Middle East and India, combined with Russian involvement in other armed conflicts (notably with Japan), their economy was brought to a practical stand-still.

The “Bloody Sunday Massacre” of unarmed peaceful protestors by government troops in St. Petersburg on January 22, 1905, set the stage for even greater civil unrest shortly thereafter.

THE POINT BEING…

History is full of events of people revolting when food and housing – 2 of the 3 most fundamental human needs of food, clothing, and shelter – cannot be obtained.

The same thing happened in the United States, albeit with less violence, during the Great Depression.

President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, aka “FDR”, and his administration, sought to do everything humanly possible to PREVENT another occurrence of a “Great Depression” by correcting laws that led to the problem.

In the years since, Republicans (mostly), have done their damndest to tear down, and destroy everything FDR accomplished – including their wet-dream of privatizing Social Security – in order to hand it over to Wall Street speculators, who are salivating like hungry dogs to get their greedy hands on The People’s money.

As evidence of mostly Republican effort (though in all fairness, some Democrats have been involved, as well – aka “establishment Democrats,” or Wall Street Democrats In Name Only, or DINOs) to tear down the laws and rules protecting the people, look at the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act (repeal and replaced by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act – 145 pages, and signed into law by President CLINTON in 1999, the Glass-Steagall Act passed in 1933, signed by FDR, was 37 pages in length, and forbade the commingling of money from Insurance companies, Stock Brokerage houses, and Banks, i.e., each industry could not perform the roles which the others did), which led DIRECTLY to the “Great Recession” during the George W. Bush administration, in which numerous “too-big-to-fail” banks collapsed, insurance companies went under, people lost jobs, and automobile manufacturers requested a bail-out… while the people got no bail-out.

Following, are the transcribed remarks made by Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders at Georgetown University November 19, 2015 about what he means when he mentions “democratic socialism.”

––––––––––––––••••––––––––––––––

––––––––––––––••••––––––––––––––

––––––––––––––••••––––––––––––––

In his inaugural remarks in January 1937, in the midst of the Great Depression, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt looked out at the nation and this is what he saw.

He saw tens of millions of its citizens denied the basic necessities of life.

He saw millions of families trying to live on incomes so meager that the pall of family disaster hung over them day by day.

He saw millions denied education, recreation, and the opportunity to better their lot and the lot of their children.

He saw millions lacking the means to buy the products they needed and by their poverty and lack of disposable income denying employment to many other millions.

He saw one-third of a nation ill-housed, ill-clad, ill-nourished.

And he acted. Against the ferocious opposition of the ruling class of his day, people he called economic royalists, Roosevelt implemented a series of programs that put millions of people back to work, took them out of poverty and restored their faith in government. He redefined the relationship of the federal government to the people of our country. He combatted cynicism, fear and despair. He reinvigorated democracy. He transformed the country.

Bernie Sanders delivers his long-awaited speech on Democratic Socialism at Georgetown University. He also speaks about his vision for bringing American foreign policy into the 21st century.

And that is what we have to do today.

And, by the way, almost everything he proposed was called “socialist.” Social Security, which transformed life for the elderly in this country was “socialist.” The concept of the “minimum wage” was seen as a radical intrusion into the marketplace and was described as “socialist.” Unemployment insurance, abolishing child labor, the 40-hour work week, collective bargaining, strong banking regulations, deposit insurance, and job programs that put millions of people to work were all described, in one way or another, as “socialist.” Yet, these programs have become the fabric of our nation and the foundation of the middle class.

Thirty years later, in Read the rest of this entry »

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