Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 148: Reality Producer Trump Searching for Stage

"Trump should accept his re-nomination at Disney's Fantasyland." - Dave Stancliff

Dear Diary,

When fading reality TV star Trump, pole-vaulted into office on the backs of white supremacists and Q-Anon conspiracists, a national stage was set for a four-year reality show... with no commercials.

Our liar-in-chief never lost sight of staging events thus far into his chaotic regime. His press briefings always feature some sort of entertainment - whether it's parrying the press with bullshit - or making outrageous accusations to divert the news of the day.

As the biggest narcissist to ever squat in the Oval Office, Trump was flabbergasted when he couldn't bully the coronavirus and hold a full-fledged Republican National Convention in Charlotte, North Carolina. Or, Florida. Or, anywhere.

Watching his stage for accepting the GOP re-nomination shrink before his beady eyes, Producer, Don the Con, went into action. 

It didn't take long for Trump to eye the White House as a viable alternative, because he'd look more presidential in that setting. 

Forget about ethical rules and the horrible optics a majority of Americans would see as a president once again ignored history and traditions, to defile them in a partisan staged event for his re-election.

Unlike past staged settings, Trump is getting some pushback from seasoned GOP lawmakers who realize his proposal would be a sacrilege the party may never recover from.

Ever the showman, Trump is looking around at equally historic spots to embrace his nomination. He may SETTLE for the Gettysburg Battlefield in Pennsylvania, but the White House is still his first choice.

Why Gettysburg, the site that turned out to be the turning point in the Civil War? That battlefield is hallowed ground with 51,000 soldiers buried there after a three-day battle.

I suspect it has something to do with the significant amount of time that Trump's put in recent weeks pushing the movement to remove Confederate monuments, and rename US military bases named after Confederate figures.

There's also another reason why Gettysburg resonates with our ego-driven leader; President Abraham Lincoln delivered one of the most important speeches in US history - the Gettysburg Address - there on the battlefield.

Trump's pathetic attempt at "stolen glory," comparing himself to Lincoln, makes me want to vomit. The orange maroon has dared to say he's done more for blacks than Lincoln numerous times in past hate rallies and press briefings.

It's possible Trump's aides had some input into him making his acceptance speech in the Keystone State because it is a critical swing state, and the largest collection of Republican voters in Pennsylvania are located there. That Joe Biden is leading in the highly contested state's polls was probably another motivation for the location.

The thing that stands out to me, and I'll bet future historians too, will be Trump's unethical and partisan use of his office. Nothing has been sacred in his attempts to consolidate power and to get re-elected.

Quote for the Day: "Choose your audience wisely, for its not your performance that varies but their response is what matters!" -Ramama Pemmaraju

Monday, August 10, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 147: Why Kodak is not Manufacturing Drugs After Trump Touted the Company

Dear Diary,

Revelations of everyday corruption during the Trump regime are so common they get little media attention these days.

Trying to survive during a never-ending pandemic is the primary news. With Trump handicapping progress on battling the coronavirus by displaying zero leadership... government corruption is playing second fiddle to breaking news.

It wasn't that long ago Trump made a big deal about saving a great American company like Kodak from going bankrupt. He bragged that by re-tooling Kodak to manufacture drugs, America would be less dependent on foreign pharmaceutical companies. That was then.

This is now: The Wall Street Journal reported that the SEC was investigating Kodak stock purchases by company board members and stock options granted to them before Trump announced the deal on July 28th.

Sen. Elizabeth Warren called for the SEC investigation into potential insider trading concerning options the day before Trump waddled out and announced a bigly deal with Kodak. 

Warren warned the SEC that "substantial amounts of company stock" by Kodak CEO James Continenza and another board member, were purchased prior to the deal "...at a time when Kodak and Trump were negotiating the deal in secret."

The irony to me is that the development bank loan Kodak was going to receive was the first of its kind under the Defense Production Act in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Defense.

One big element of this dark arrangement really stands out starkly... one of the main drugs Kodak was supposed to be producing was hydroxychloroquine. Trump and full-time douche bag Peter Navarro's preferred drug to treat COVID-19. There's no such thing as coincidences with Don the Con's backroom deals.

Kodak's chance for revival by re-tooling and making drugs with a new industry loan is circling the drain in the halls of justice. It looks like Kodak's lobbying efforts, after spending a company record of $870,000 to Trump's minions in government, was a complete bust.

I must say, I wasn't surprised when the press caught up to Trump Friday, and asked him about the Kodak deal. He told reporters, "I wasn't involved in it," and waddled away with no sense of shame.

Quote for the Day: "Corrupt governments are run by corrupt politicians that run corrupt law enforcement agencies." -Steven Magee

Sunday, August 9, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 146: Trump Signs Executive Order: Americans Have To Vote For Him

Dear Diary,

Trump decided a long time ago that executive orders were like waving a magic wand. He could sign one to get anything he wanted.

In theory.

In the real world, many of Trump's executive orders have been, and still are being, challenged in the courts. 

Fact: The Constitution gives Congress authority over federal spending, so Trump does not have the legal authority to issue executive orders determining how money should be spent on fighting the coronavirus.

That hasn't slowed Stump down in the past when he declared a national emergency on the U.S.-Mexico border to shift billions of dollars from the defense budget to pay for his wall that he promised his supporters in 2016.

Congress passed legislation to stop him, but there were too few votes in the Republican-controlled senate to override his veto. 

If the measures that he signed yesterday are challenged by Congress - and it's likely they will be - a similar scenario could play out two months before the general election. Meanwhile all the measures are in limbo. Then it becomes a political football.
What did Thump sign?
To be clear, they weren't bills, despite what our liar-in-chief claimed yesterday.
There were four measures:

The first measure established a payroll tax holiday through the end of the year for Americans earning less than $100,000 a year. 

The second defers student loan payments until the end of the year.
Nice, but not exactly the immediate relief people need.

The third measure would continue eviction moratoriums.

The fourth measure extends unemployment benefits that ran out last week, but at a reduced level of $400 instead of $600. 

While both are important, without a comprehensive stimulus relief program conditions will only get worse than they are now. Not too mention it would be stripping Congress of its powers.

Picking and choosing segments of society to temporally help when practically everyone needs help is a vile political move by a malicious narcissist.

Once again Trump held a rally (falsely claiming it was a press briefing again) at his Bedminster Golf Club and invited his uber-wealthy pals (who pay upwards of $250,000 a year in  membership fees to be entertained by the reality TV president) to witness the "historic event."

It was weird watching a group of millionaires without masks clapping their hands like seals every time Trump lied about everything from the perils of mail-in voting to Joe Biden being a senile puppet of the extreme left.  

Needless to say, it wasn't a pretty picture. 

The optics of out-of-work Americans waiting in food lines and hoping for government help, while Trump paraded around in his club house like an obese peacock campaigning for re-election is going to resonate with millions of non-millionaires in the weeks ahead. 


Future executive orders by Trump I'm waiting to see:

**Americans have to vote for Donald Trump or be declared traitors.

**LED light bulbs and water saving toilets will be banned in the U.S.

**Anyone who sells Trump memorabilia (to include street vendors) will be eligible for coronavirus grants from $1 million and up. 

**A declaration of a new national holiday honoring White Supremacist's in America, on June 17th.

**Trump properties are no longer subject to any kind of taxation. Period.

In Trump's world the coronavirus is going to magically disappear. Meanwhile, he's waving his magic wand in a desperate attempt to salvage his failing campaign.

Quote for the Day: "Here you leave today and enter the world of yesterday, tomorrow, and fantasy." -Walt Disney

Saturday, August 8, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 145: The NRA's Days Are Numbered

Dear Diary,

After decades of corrupting Congress, the National Rifle Association is facing it's comeuppance from New York state Attorney General Letitia James.

 Jame's office is suing the NRA for (among other things):

** The leadership of the organization spent funds improperly;

**The leadership engaged in self-dealing;

**The leadership made false or misleading disclosures to the attorney general and the IRS

The lawsuit also accuses Wayne LaPierre, the NRA's longtime CEO, of using "a secret "poison pill contract" to guarantee himself lifetime income from the gun group.

These are already bad times for the NRA as the group is deeply in debt because of years of accumulated corruption.
The civil lawsuit alleges that when the NRA faced financial shortfalls the corporation (the lobbying wing) turned to its foundation.

The NRA's independent charitable foundation was breeched by LaPierre and cronies, who colluded with the Foundation's Board of Trustees to get millions in illegal loans.

The NRA and it's charitable foundation are also under fire from a separate lawsuit filed by the District of Columbia's attorney general. The lawsuit alleges the charitable foundation became a vessel that supported the NRA's financial interests.

The best thing about the State of New York lawsuit is that it seeks to dissolve the NRA. And it looks like, based upon the information gathered over the last year, the NRA is soon going to be just a bad memory.

The demise of the Trump-loving, conservative cabal the NRA lobby, will leave a lot of Republicans in a bad position. One, they're going to lose a big chunk of their income, and two, they're going to be forced to act on gun safety laws that the NRA has prevented from being passed for decades.

The NRA had a long history of thwarting the rules that govern the non-profits in New York state, Gov. Andrew Cuomo told reporters.

It looks like those days are coming to an end.

Quote for the Day: "The best time to fight corruption was ages ago, the next best thing is now." -Amit Kalantri

Friday, August 7, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 144: Our Reality Show Election Pitts Fiction vs Fact


 Dear Diary,

Trump made made it clear to everyone around him that after he was elected his administration would be the biggest reality show in America.

The dizzying rise from a fading TV reality star to the president of the United States, caused Trump's already outsized ego to blossom like deadly nightshade in Western Asia.

Fact-checking Trump's daily lies hardly raises an eyebrow this far into his failed administration. Everyone - yes, I mean everyone who has eyes, ears, and can read - KNOWS he's a habitual liar. 

Despite that, Trump pumps out fictional scenarios to combat reality with increasing vigor as election day draws near. The most egregious example has to be his denial of what the coronavirus is doing to the country.

Every healthcare expert in the country, and even Trump's Task Force, is warning that it's not safe to open schools across the country this fall. The decision to open, the professionals say, has to be based upon the amount of infections in a county and local school districts. Many other safety caveats have to also be considered.

In direct opposition to the experts, Trump is demanding all school districts open up, and even threatening to withhold funds to districts that don't comply with his royal decree.

As more information about COVID-19 becomes available healthcare experts have found out that children can be carriers of the virus, and a small percentage can get very sick. 

That means teachers (and any other adults in the school) are more at risk of infection, and when the kids go home their family could catch the coronavirus from them.

Trump claims, without evidence, that children are immune and democrats don't want schools to open so that it hurts his re-election chances.

This unnecessary battle between safety facts and fiction during a pandemic is another element of chaos that Trump is infecting into the media. Coupled with his all out attacks against mail-in voting, Trump is doubling down on fictional claims that he believes his supporters want to hear.

This denial of reality is no surprise to anyone who knows Trump's simplistic belief that if you tell a lie long enough it becomes real. 

That Trump suckled on the teat of one of the most infamous lawyers and political fixers in history, Roy Kohn (Senator Joseph McCarthy's lawyer), is common knowledge.

Watching his reality presidency slip further away every day has further unhinged Trump the narcissist, and producer of an alternate world where everyone loved him as the supreme leader.

Make sure to vote for Biden on Nov. 3rd, so we can restore reality and dignity to America. 

Quote for the Day: "Reality exists in the human mind, and no where else." -George Orwell

Thursday, August 6, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 143: History Will Remember Trump For Being a Serial Liar

Dear Diary,

With over 20,000 documented lies to his discredit, Trump has set a leadership bar so low it will likely never be challenged in the foreseeable future.

When I'm finished writing this post, I'm sending a comprehensive list of Trump's lying statistics to the folks at Guinness Book of World Records

In other words, the perfect publication to feature our serial liar-in-charge. The editors may even feature Trump's artificially bronzed face on the next cover if everything works out. 

Being a world-class egotist, Trump will feel honored to be featured in the latest edition of Guinness Book of Records. He'll also probably sue the publication - because that's what he does - but will eventually lose in every court in the land.

Another possibility: negotiate cover deal and let Trump use that portrait of himself that he used to rip off charities (it's his favorite) and in return he would agree not to sue Guinness. Observation; this offer only works if you're dealing with a malicious narcissist.

Trump's talent for telling lies puts him in a special category among American presidents. Watching him speak during his press briefings/rallies is like stepping into an alternate universe where up is down, and down is up.

Historians watching videos of Trump will be struck by his ability to lie without batting an eye. And how stupid he really was. 
More New Books I'd like to See on Trump

1) Trump Tells All: 'How I Fooled Everyone'
 An insider's look at how corruption became rampant during the Trump regime and how the Republican Party enabled him to do whatever he wanted. Telling scenes like Lindsey Graham kneeling before Trump's tiny trumpet, flesh out the whole sordid story.

2) The Art of the Lie: Trump Reveals His Techniques
Trump spins tales of how lying got him where he is today, and how important telling a bigly lie can be for a reader's career. This book is the closest thing to scholarly he's ever done by sharing his unmatched ability to lie. A master's edition on how to deceive in 10 easy steps by his favorite ghost writer.  

3) How Whining, Even Though You're Wrong, Can Be Weaponized
With input from Trump's closest minions, this manual for manipulating people takes the reader through a series of situations where whining can be a winning preposition when cornered by facts. A special section features GOP Cry Babies to watch for in 2021 politics.

Quote for the Day: "Be bad, but at least don't be a liar, a deceiver!" -Leo Tolstoy

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 142: It's Happened - Americans Have Become Shock Proof!

Dear Diary,

It was a slow destructive process during the first three years of Trump's takeover, but things have picked up in the last nine months.

That's because Trump is delivering non-stop lies and treasonous tweets daily.

Stories that would have been major scandals in any other administration have a lifecycle of 24-hours before the next shocking headline is delivered. 

The result is Americans have become shock proof. Not numb. Just no longer surprised at the depth of The Donald's depravity and depredations against our democracy.

Try as I might, I can't think of another president in American history who would have stood up for a notorious serial sexual predator - Jeffrey Epstein - numerous times during his presidency. 

No past president would have stood up for Epstein's co-conspirator Ghislaine Maxwell, Epstein's partner in abusing young girls for years.

But Trump does it, and we forget by the next day because he's pushing Lysol injections again and claiming the coronavirus is going away next month.

The terrible news that our GDP took the biggest hit in history, was hours old when Trump grabbed the headlines by suggesting he wanted to delay the elections. This constant chaos has become so common little of it surprises me, and I suspect many others, anymore.

Sometimes, I think back to my days as a newspaper editor and publisher, when any of these daily stories would have been a banner 90 point headline on the front page. It's sobering how quickly they plunge into obscurity today.

In an age when the president of the United States has been recorded bragging about his female conquests, and "...how you can grab their pussies, if your famous," Trump's managed to maintain a cult-like following. 

The rest of America, that doesn't belong to the Trump cult, is disgusted with his corruption and divisiveness. They have all become shock proof. Trump can shout "Squirrel!" and point all he wants, but people are no longer fooled. 

He's an old charlatan whose exposed himself repeatedly and Americans get the message.

Trump's clumsy-handed efforts at denying responsibility and distracting from reality, are failing. Polls point that out. Biden is leading in nearly every category a candidate could hope for.

No one will be surprised if Trump contests the election results. He's already promised to throw a presidential hissy fit well in advance of the results. 

It's a good thing that Americans have been primed before election day. 

Quote for the Day: "Americans became desensitized to scandalous revelation, whether it involved sex or drug use or cheating on a college exam. You could disappoint us, certainly, but we were now a very hard country to shock." -Matt Bai

Tuesday, August 4, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 141: Suffer The Children: Schools Opening Despite Outbreaks

Dear Diary,

The topic of children going back to school now is as hot as the blazing temperatures across the country, and Trump's temper tantrums against science and reality.

Because there's been so much mixed-messaging from the White House, the virus is running rampant. Trump and minions are insisting the whole country go back to school this fall, but school authorities are warning it's not yet safe to go back to in-school teaching everywhere. 

WHAT HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS ARE SAYING

1. The area that the school district is in should have the spread contained before throwing the doors open to students.

2. There's numerous cautions that can be taken, from wearing face masks to social distancing and taking temperatures. But there has to be other factors taken into account in addition to those recommendations. For example busing.

3. Children can get the virus, although they aren't generally as seriously affected as adults. There has been exceptions however. Children are carriers, according to recent studies, that can bring the coronavirus home.

4.Most schools don't have the funding to pay for the additional money that would be needed to make schools safe.

HERE'S WHERE THE SITUATION GETS MESSY

Parents...

Some are desperate for their children to go back to in-school teaching for a myriad of reasons. From children's mental health to an ideology that denies science.  

Still others are too concerned about their children's (and their own) safety to expose them to in-school teaching in the middle of a spreading pandemic.

The worst thing I see happening is the controversy the subject is causing. Instead of a unified and scientific national approach there's chaos. In our politically charged universe nothing is safe... not even children's lives!

Quote for the Day: "Children are our most valuable resource." -Herbert Hoover

Monday, August 3, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 140: The Dog Days of Trump's Regime

Dear Diary,

It's the start of another chaotic week as the nation warily edges toward the elections in November. The country is mired in the dog days of summer.

Fun fact; dog days were historically the period following the heliacal rising of the star system Sirius, which Hellenistic astrology connected with heat, drought, sudden thunderstorms, lethargy, fever, mad dogs, and bad luck.

The nation is also enduring the dog days of Trump's regime, as he strikes out like a mad dog threatening to delay the elections, while also attacking mail-in voting as a fraudulent process.

Like a rabid dog chasing a mailman, Trump is busy sabotaging the United States Postal Service after appointing a big donor to his re-election campaign as it's new head honcho. Mission: slow down the mail as much as possible to cause a cluster fuck in November.

With the help of a pack of other deranged dogs like Jim "Gym" Jordan; "Moscow Mitch" McConnell; Mike Pence the patsy; leading lapdog Bill Barr; Lyin' Ted Cruz; "Gaslighter" Matt Gaetz; "Gomer" Louis Gompert; and the rest of his loyal bloodhounds, Trump has managed to nearly derail our democracy in one term.

It's frightening to see just how fragile democracy can be.

The United States of America is ground zero for the global pandemic. We're doing worse than the rest of the world in containing the virus with no end in sight.

The coronavirus is raging while record hot temperatures are being recorded from coast-to-coast. Our economy is staggering under the increased burdens that come from having no real leadership.

As tough as these dog days of Trump's regime are, they're only going to get worse in the fall approaching Nov.3rd. It doesn't take a prophet to know that Trump is prepared to interfere and discredit the election in any way possible.

I suspect when Trump loses the election authorities will have to wheel him out in a cage and take him to a kennel for mentally ill dogs somewhere in Puerto Rico...

Quote for the Day: "Every summer: 'Let's make this the best one yet!' End of Summer: "Wow! This summer sucked!" -Unknown

Sunday, August 2, 2020

Pandemic Diary Day 139: Where Were Our Politicians When Emergency Funds for Millions of Americans Ran Out?


Dear Diary,

When Congress failed to restore emergency stimulus funds for millions of Americans Friday, it plunged our beleaguered country even deeper into the current maelstrom.  

For the record, I've documented who, what, when, and where some politicians and political pundits were when the current lifelines to desperate Americans were severed as the deadline ran out Friday night.


TRUMP

As the country remained in numerous intensifying crises from the raging coronavirus epidemic to anti-racism protests and benefits running out, Trump played golf. And tweeted lies and conspiracies.

"Mr. Not Having Time" to play golf because he'd be too busy when he was elected, logged in his 283rd trip to the golf course while in office, and his 376th day at a Trump property.

While Trump played golf (ala Nero playing the harp while Rome burned) the US death toll from COVID-19 topped 153,000 with more than 4.5 million cases - by far the largest totals in the world.


Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert

One of a group of maroons that defies face mask wearing in the Capitol, Louie "Gomer," has been strutting around like a rooster without his face mask on. After finding out he had the coronavirus Wednesday, Louie had to go into quarantine.

So, he spent his Friday claiming he may have got the virus by - wait for it - wearing a face mask. Oh, yeah. He said that in a video for the alt right face mask idiots.


Brian Murphy

Department of Homeland Security acting undersecretary, Brian Murphy, was removed from his post and reassigned to a different, undisclosed position Friday when word got out what he was doing in Portland.

Murphy was compiling reports on journalists in Portland, Ore., and collecting electronic messages belonging to protestors. He was even making up "Baseball cards" of protestors and passing them out.

Democrats are calling for an investigation.


Joe Scarborough

In a piece published Friday, political pundit Joe Scarborough chastised the self-described conservatives who remained silent earlier in the week when Trump touted the idea of delaying the 2020 election over debunked concerns about mail-in voting fraud.

For the record, the orange anus can't delay the election. Period.


Jim Jordan

U.S. Republican Rep. Jim "Gym" Jordan was playing to the cameras Friday morning as he bullied, belittled, and attacked Dr. Anthony Fauci during a House Oversight and Reform Subcommittee hearing on the coronavirus crisis.

As usual he was playing for an audience of one, his master Donald Trump. Anyone who happened to catch the exchange between the two could see what a dramatic clueless moron Gym is.


The bottom line.

Friday was another stark snapshot of how dysfunctional our government is. 

Quote for the Day: "Great leaders create more leaders, not followers." -Roy T. Bennett