Here I sit on a Saturday just before Tuesday's election. Not being some sort of Great-Value label Nostradamus, I won't even begin to talk about how it turns out. By the time you read this, you'll know anyway. But, just a few observations to make as Republicans no-doubt bask in their new victories. Oh wait, I guess that is a prediction, isn't it? Well, given the Chernobyl that is the midterm Democratic campaign, it's a fairly safe bet.
But, this week some things stood out for me. Firstly, speaking of Chernobyl, there is the future of Ukraine. While at one time during the Cold War, President Kennedy swore we would protect democracy at all costs around the world, we are having some problems right here at home.
"Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty. This much we pledge--and more."
And as for other nations under siege, well, you know the one I mean, the future will be dicey. Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, whom I am loathe to bother quoting as she makes Forrest Gump sound like Isaac Newton, said this as the warm-up act for the former President's latest Nuremberg rally...
"Under Republicans, not another penny will go to Ukraine. Our country comes first."
Greene, who as David Warner said in "Time Bandits," is mercifully free of the ravages of intellect, said this as Forbes Magazine reported on the state of the Russian invasion/genocide in Ukraine..
"The Russian army is losing at least a battalion’s worth of vehicles and men a day as twin Ukrainian counteroffensives roll back Russian territorial gains in eastern and southern Ukraine. That’s hundreds of casualties and scores of vehicle write-offs every day."
So, one can only imagine the relief the dime-store Mussolini in Moscow feels upon hearing her comments. In fact, Putin might be emboldened to step up so-called "cleansing operations" in the beleaguered country, like the one described in this AP story...
Just let that photo sink in and ask yourself if we can walk and chew gum with our border and prevent further slaughter in Ukraine at the same time. By the way, Greene was met with thunderous applause by the gathered faithful.
And speaking of faith, the late in the campaign commercial for Florida Governor Ron DeSantis was, uh, interesting.
Yes, on the 8th day, the Lord created this guy. I repeat, not computers, lasers or quartz watches, but this guy. Were it true, it would indeed be enough the shake my faith, but instead it is simply sacrilegious. Given the fealty shown by people of supposed faith to a philandering, lying, dishonest carnival barker, I shouldn't be surprised that they swallow this tripe hook, line and sinker. But it does make one want to turn over the money-changing tables in the temple of politics.
While on the subject of election nonsense, have you heard the kitty litter urban legend? Well, sit down and brace yourselves for the strangest rumor since Democrats began kidnapping babies in the basement of a pizzaria in Washington to use their blood in ritualistic ceremonies to restore their youth. What, you didn't believe that? Do your own research, for crying out loud!
In this rumor, the business of gender confusion and pronoun selection has run amuck and students are now identifying as cats. Apparently, according to at least 20 Republican politicians including our two favorites, Marjorie Taylor Greene and Lauren Boebert, along with the guy who may be New Hampshire's new senator as I write this and Oklahoma's next Superintendent of Education, schools are accommodating these "furries" with cat litter boxes in restrooms.
With no evidence, save on the internet, some people seem willing to believe the most mind-numbingly stupid things. Even with evidence like, oh, say, a presidential birth certificate, they continue to swallow political fairy tales. And when politicians like Boebert muster up all the cumulative knowledge gained in studying for her GED and regurgitate this farcical drivel, we are well on the road to Idiocracy.
One hopes that Kevin McCarthy puts Greene on the education committee to put an end to this feckless, fanatical, feline foolishness.
Then there is the email I got from Kash Patel.
Some explanation. Mr. Patel is a former government official that President Trump assigned to various positions in his administration, as described on his Wikipedia page...
"Patel was hired in February as a staffer for President Trump's National Security Council (NSC), working in the International Organizations and Alliances directorate, and in July 2019 became Senior Director of the Counterterrorism Directorate, a new position created for him.
He is said to have been a back channel contact with the former Ukrainian government when the extortion attempt was made to get the "goods" on Hunter Biden. Again, from his Wikipedia page.
Patel is the author of a children's picture book, titled The Plot Against the King, that perpetuates the false claims of election fraud during the 2020 US elections."
His final position appears to be as a Presidential Cabana Boy as he has become a most vociferous defender of the former Potus' handling of classified documents, which is to say, tossing them in a closet with the pool supplies. He has been so outspoken and devoted that when a grand jury was convened on the matter, he agreed to spill his guts only in return for immunity. The results should be delicious.
Well, as mentioned, I got an email from old Kash today. It was a fundraiser for the guy who may or may not be the Governor of Pennsylvania now, Doug Mastriano. Here it is. I have been on this mailing list for the same reason that Frank Sinatra sang Fly Me to the Moon. So you don't have to.
I think the part I object to most is the greeting, "friend." It's especially interesting to me that this email arrived one day after his testimony before a grand jury about the events at Mar a Lago, again, only after being granted immunity. I also wonder about the use of the phrase "America First" given its association with Charles Lindbergh and the other Hitler admirers before WWII. But maybe it isn't so curious at all.
In terms of political discourse, let's look at where we are here in the land of the free. On Tucker Carlson's nightly fright-fest on Friday, he had a guest on to talk about the attack on Speaker Nancy Pelosi's husband.
And in true Tucker fashion, the conversation completely ignored the police report, video and attacker's confession to elaborate on the current fashionable conservative meme that Paul Pelosi invited a gay rent boy over to break into his house and hit him in the head with a hammer. Because, of course, there's no greater turn-on than a concussion.
And, as you might imagine a conversation that starts with this as a plausible scenario quickly went downhill. It got to the point that the guest, whoever the hell this guy was, lamented that Nancy went to all the trouble to get a breast augmentation in her 80's and it still didn't keep Paul interested. The direct quote was...
“This woman has taken the hard-earned money she’s made from insider trading and invested in a pair of cans at 82 years old and comes home to find out that her husband’s playing hide the hammer with a Black Lives Matter guy.”
Carlson found that hilarious, by the way. It seems somehow wrong to mention that the Speaker has never been bereft in that department.
Yes, JFK noticed, too. But the sheer, insulting cheapness of this line of argument seems beneath contempt, though, that has never been a limbo pole Tucker was incapable of slithering under.
Now, political violence has never been confined to one political party or even point of view. But the collective reaction from many to this attack tells us a lot about where we are. I'm trying to picture jokes about an attack on, say, Elaine Chao, the wife of Mitch McConnell. He is the highest ranking Republican in the Senate and I am having a lot of trouble imagining similar comments being made in this situation, but maybe that is a failure of my imagination.
Of course we all remember the hilarity that ensued after the liberal guy shot up the Republican congressional softball practice, nearly killing Representative Steve Scalise. It was a laugh riot, I tell 'ya. For the slower kids in class, that was irony.
But maybe there are no more limits and this is simply the new normal. As I said, just a couple of observations about the state of things on this Saturday before the vote.
And however it went, I hope every winner and loser accepts the results with the good grace and civility we all expect.
Oh, hell. Who am I kidding?