Saturday, June 12, 2021

Trump Spied On Members of Congress Conducting Presidential Oversight

Maybe we ought to call it #CorruptionGate. 

Or #SpiesForTrump.

It wasn't that long ago the former reality star and president was telling Americans that the Obama administration was spying on him.

Trump shed crocodile tears at rallies claiming the Democrats were after him and had bugged Trump Tower during the 2016 presidential campaign.

What really happened is another story. 

Trump set the Department of Justice on a witch hunt to dig up dirt on members of Congress and their staff. Even a minor from one family.

In pursuit of leaks of classified information about contacts between Trump associates and Russia, the DOJ subpoenaed Apple for data from the accounts of Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee.

The story gets more sinister. The prosecutors also secured a gag order against Apple, preventing it from informing customers their metadata had been seized. The order was recently lifted, and that's how this story got out.

This new drama has exposed another layer of corruption under the Trump regime. Some are saying this is the worst thing Trump did while POTUS.

Frankly, I disagree. His coup attempt is pretty high up there to me. But here's the thing; there's going to be more revelations uncovered in the weeks, months and years to come.

Trump's relationship with AG Bill Barr as his personal attack dog is already well established.

What happened - and never should have - is Trump used his presidential powers to target the legislative branch, and his personal enemies. This flagrant abuse of presidential power is appalling and frightening.

The guardrails of democracy barely survived four years under Trump's authoritarian regime. I seriously doubt it would have survived were he re-elected.

Friday, June 11, 2021

Happy Birthday Donny! Trump's Personal PAC Continues To Sucker Donors

Since Trump's minions put together a personal PAC for the former president, he's been leeching from his loyal followers.

The PAC, Save America Trump is constantly dunning supporters for money. The whole mission of his putrid PAC is to maintain a steady source of income while his actual businesses are failing.

Donors are asked to cough up money with all kinds of lame excuses for why the disgraced billionaire(?) needs it.

The latest - and perhaps greatest - of these ridiculous reasons for giving money to Trump to spend as he sees fit is...

The PAC's latest announcement; "Let's SURPRISE Trump "with a record breaking fundraising day" by making an EXTRA donation to his Orangeness.

The way the shady "opt in" scheme is designed the website automatically ticks a box saying the follower would make an extra donation in June in the same amount they give monthly, as a present for Trump's birthday on June 14th.

Save America has few restrictions on how the donated money should be spent. 

To be clear, It is NOT affiliated in any way with the Republican Party. This is a cult thing. There's no other way to explain it.

The grift is working. Trump has already managed to suck $85 million hard-earned dollars into his PAC piggybank. 

Trump's two idiot sons and daughter are urging the sheep to send money before a certain deadline - "Hurry" one message encouraged,"...there's only an hour left!"

As I watch the orange Kool aid drinkers gladly contributing to Trump's corrupt agendas, I must grudgingly admit he's the most prolific Con Man in history. Not just in the USA, but the rest of the world.

Thursday, June 10, 2021

Trump's Assault Against Media Organizations Was Worse Than You Thought

Trump's four-year run assaulting media organizations that didn't deify him was more insidious than most Americans realized.

Beyond Trump's well-known battles with the press before becoming president, his disastrous reign brought the power of the presidency against mainstream media organizations and journalists in general.

Recent reports have exposed just how far Trump abused the office to go after his so-called enemy... the fake press. 

That meant years of meritless lawsuits and investigating individual journalists he wanted to get dirt on the sly.

The Justice Department recently notified reporters at CNN, The Washington Post and The New York Times that personal records had been seized by Trump's DOJ under Bill Barr.

This public confirmation of Trump's corruption adds to the enormity of the damage he did to our democracy. Trying to steal an election on his way out was his swan song.

Leaders of CNN, The New York Times and The Washington Post are scheduled to meet on Monday with AG Merrick Garland to clear the air.

Garland already announced he WOULD NOT demand journalist's records in leak investigations. 

That'll in itself will be a first for a DOJ that has historically had a bad habit of letting presidents get away with nearly everything.

It's one small step for democracy and for the freedom of the press. At least it's a start.

Wednesday, June 9, 2021

Here's Why the Super Rich Get Away With Paying No Taxes

If there was ever any doubt how privileged the super rich in America are it's been erased with a leak from the IRS showing people like Jeff Bezos, and Bill Gates, don't pay taxes like you and I do.

While the IRS is busy looking for the perp who blew the whistle on the super-rich's taxes, nothing is going to come from revealing what people already knew.

If you're rich enough to belong to the wealthy stratosphere of Americans that don't get taxed the last thing you want to hear about is tax reform.

But is that even possible? With Republicans siding with the super-rich any reform bills are dead upon arrival.

What we have is a US tax code favoring the wealthiest, and little desire among lawmakers to change things in Congress.

The irony is all those "see-no-evil" lawmakers are NOT representing the average American who put them in office.

With our current tax codes the wealthy are insulated from the reality the rest of us face.

As long as the super-rich are able to keep bribing corrupt lawmakers with massive donations there's no way things are going to change.

The average American lives in one America where everyone isn't treated equally, and the one percenters live in another more exclusive America where money is their god.

Until American voters wise up and get rid of the parasites in Congress, the super-rich are running the country.

Tuesday, June 8, 2021

Why Is The Biden Administration Protecting Trump?


The Biden Administration's Department of Justice is protecting Trump from a civil suit where he's accused of raping a magazine columnist.

Yesterday the DOJ argued in a brief that it should be permitted to substitute itself for former president Trump as defendant in a defamation lawsuit.

The flawed argument goes that Trump was an employee of the government and that he acted "within the scope of employment" the department, rather than Trump personally, should serve as defendant in the case.

Meanwhile the White House claimed it wasn't consulted by the DOJ on the decision to file the brief. 

Why not? Isn't part of Biden's job to right the wrongs under the Trump administration? Wasn't there supposed to be an accounting for Trump's crimes?

It's looking more and more like the Biden administration is ignoring the damage Trump did in four years.

Despite holding the majority in the House and Senate, democrats are kowtowing to to a couple of members in their own party and not holding Trump accountable for anything.

Today two senate committees released what was touted as the most comprehensive report yet on the Jan. 6 insurrection, and there wasn't one mention of Trump being involved.

Apparently both reports were watered down before they were even examined by the two committees. 

Members of the committees intentionally avoided the most politicized topics to keep the investigation bipartisan.

In essence the report was not comprehensive when it came to looking at ALL of the causes of the riot, despite claims it was.

There's several more congressional committees looking into the assault on the Capitol building.

Don't be surprised if they don't mention Trump or his cronies who fomented the attack on our democracy. 

The Republicans in Congress don't want the whole story of how Trump's followers did his bidding and stormed the Capitol.

Democrats made a feeble attempt at getting the Republicans to allow for an independent commission, but it was shut down with prejudice.

It's puzzling and disappointing to see the Biden administration allowing Trump's crimes to go unpunished.

Monday, June 7, 2021

Happiness Is A Warm Gun In America

I graduated from high school in 1968, the same year The Beatles premiered their new song, "Happiness Is A Warm Gun."

Those in the know at the time deciphered what the phrase really met - it was about sex, specifically a man's penis after intercourse.

Since then the phrase has taken on a more ominous interpretation in our gun-loving society. Americans love their guns so much that they're unwilling to pass any gun-safety laws.

Between the NRA and right-wing extremists the assault on gun safety has worked for decades. 

The 2nd Amendment is re-interpreted by the powerful gun manufacturing companies that lavish millions on corrupt Republican lawmakers in Congress who oppose any legislation to make guns safer.

That's in spite of the fact:

**America is the gun mecca of the world. 

**Mass murders continue to increase every year

**No other nation in the world has an armed citizenry like our militia groups and other bad actors who oppose the government and laws of the land.

Daily news stories of gun-related deaths reveal how bad things are:

A Sampling of TODAY's Headlines

**Two arrested in the suspected road rage shooting death of a 6-year-old

**10-Year-old killed in New York City after suspect repeatedly shoots into a Queens home

**MASS SHOOTINGS leave fatalities in Chicago, Portland, Miami-Dade and other cities

I don't have enough space to list the dozens of gun-related violence stories released just today. You get the point however. These articles sound like they've been snatched from a 3rd world country under siege from within. 

A year doesn't go by without some news item suddenly causing a surge in gun sales. They're always based on fear that the government is going to take their guns away. It's a groundless fear, but works every time.

2020 Facts:

The South accounted for nearly half of all US gun sales in 2020.

**The Midwest and the West were very close at 23 percent and 21 percent respectively.

**Gun sales in the Northwest fell firmly in last place at just 11 percent.

**There were 15 guns sold for every 100 adults living in Wyoming.

The sad thing about living in a heavily armed country like America, is that you're more likely to be killed by a gun than any other nation in the world.

Sunday, June 6, 2021

After Saving Human Lives For 5 Years A Heroic Rat Retires

Magawa wearing his gold medal for bravery

This story should be made into a movie.

How often do you hear about rats saving human lives? I've got a good one for you today.

Meet Magawa, an African giant pouched rat who sniffed out landmines in Cambodia for five years. 

His handlers have retired him because the average lifespan for his species is 6-8 years and they want him to enjoy the fruits of his labor. 

The heroic rat helped clear more than 2.4 million square feet of land and saved an unknown number of people from injury or possible death.

Magawa - whose name means courage - is the most successful graduate of a program funded by a Belgian nonprofit group teaching rats to detect land mines for more than 20 years.

The rats, which have a strong sense of smell, can detect the chemical compounds found inside explosives. 

They're trained - by an organization named APOPO - through a process using bananas and other food rewards in exchange for successfully completing a task.

The rat's super power is being faster than a human with a metal detector. They're also too light to set off a landmine (it takes an average of 11 pounds. The rats only weigh 3 pounds). When they stop and scratch the ground, it's time to start digging.

Oh, by the way. They're always right!

During Magawa's service to his country, he found 71 land mines and 38 items of unexploded ordnance. 

Last September Magawa was awarded a gold medal for bravery from the British charity PDSA, an honor that had previously only gone to dogs.

So what do you think?

Would Magawa's story make a good animated movie?

Quick note - I was a combat engineer in Vietnam in 1970. My primary job was minesweeping. I sure could have used Magawa's help!!

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