Tag Archives: Donald Trump

Polls, walks, and addled noir: Coronoavirus update #6

2.4 miles. A magic number — the number of miles I walked yesterday after lunch. Besides the noxious task of keeping illness at bay, noting my increased physical endurance has become part of my routine. Setbacks happen. On Monday I recorded my first class lecture on Zoom only to realize I hadn’t pressed “Record.” My student journalists have accustomed themselves to my stern admonitions against relying on technology during interviews — bring a notebook as well as your phone, etc. Continue reading

Ron DeSantis will let Floridians die

Hoping his master will nominate him in the next two months to head the coronavirus task force when Pence, Fauci, et. al exhaust his patience, Ron DeSantis governs my state as if he wanted Donald Trump’s base to die before Election Day:

DeSantis pointed to crowded beaches in California and the stream of travelers from New York to Florida as evidence that those orders aren’t working.

“And the fact of the matter is, a governor is not going to start imprisoning people just because they leave their house,’’ he said. “So you’re going to have a lot of non-compliance.”

DeSantis announced that while the state won’t halt the number of people who are fleeing to Florida from other states, he will require “anybody traveling from those regions in New York or New Jersey to the state of Florida is going to have to do a mandatory 14-day self isolation.”

And what of the health of the state’s largest concentration of the Three R’s — rich, retired, revanchist — and their contribution to his master’s electoral prospects?

The governor said earlier Monday in a press conference at The Villages that he wants “good data” on the coronavirus to drive his decisions about whether to shut down the state. He implied that it isn’t yet a major concern in many parts of Florida.

“We’ve still got 20 counties with zero infections and I think about 26 that have 2, 3, 5, 7 type of infections,” he said.

But the data he’s relying on may be inadequate and out of date. As of midday Monday, Florida had conducted just over 13,000 tests in a state of more than 21 million people. Because a person may get multiple tests, the number of people who have been tested is less than 13,000

Kudos to the Miami Herald for the last paragraph rebuke. The number of motorists arrested for speeding doesn’t vitiate the need for speed limits; evidence of fraud doesn’t undermine the case for a welfare system; finding only one case in landlocked northern Bradford County doesn’t prove the county won’t see a surge. I’m terrified to speak to certain relatives who remain, to quote Elizabeth Bishop, “awful but cheerful” about Florida (the state with the prettiest name!) already enduring the worst of it.

‘We will not cover live any speech…involving the president’

Confusing objectivity with fairness, political reporters have contributed unwittingly to the decay of their craft. Millions of Americans trust The Media less than a president who spits lies in two- and three-word sentences, then repeating them like Pete Shelley does his solo in Buzzcocks’ “Boredom.” I urge my young charges at the student newspapers to describe what their five senses tell them. They don’t need three sources to confirm a rose is pink, and if a member of student government confidently claims he saw snakes falling out of the ceiling it’s up to the reporter to explain snakes aren’t often found in the library. Continue reading

The impeachment of a president

An impeachable misdemeanor might be an act that subverted the principles of government, such as one that violated the Constitution or that flouted an official oath or duty of law; it could be an act that abused or usurped power. Claiming that the Senate was “bound by no law, either statute or common, which may limit your constitutional prerogative,” {Benjamin] Butler then argued that during the impeachment trial, the Senate, acting as a court, was a law unto itself, bound only by principles of equity and justice where the law of the people was supreme. And since an impeachment trial took place in the Senate, not a judicial court, it was not subject to a judicial court’s restrictions regarding conviction — namely, certainty beyond a reasonable doubt. In an impeachment trial, the managers need only offer a preponderance of evidence o prove guilt. — Brenda Wineapple, The Impeachers: The Trial of Andrew Johnson and the Dreams of a Just Nation.

A white supremacist who like Andrew Johnson cares nothing except satisfying the grievances of a minority white base, themselves extensions of his greed, narcissism, and sociopathy.

I know it “means” shit.

I’m ecstatic.

Fuck you if you’re not happy.

The Lincoln Project has blood on its hands

Lifelong MSNBC denizens George T. Conway, Steve Schmidt, and Rick Wilson (for real: they must rent rooms in the building) cobble together an NYT op ed sure to make Nicole Wallace and Joe Scarborough’s heart pitter-patter. The key bit:

Indeed, national Republicans have done far worse than simply march along to Mr. Trump’s beat. Their defense of him is imbued with an ugliness, a meanness and a willingness to attack and slander those who have shed blood for our country, who have dedicated their lives and careers to its defense and its security, and whose job is to preserve the nation’s status as a beacon of hope.

Congressional Republicans have embraced and copied Mr. Trump’s cruelty and defended and even adopted his corruption. Mr. Trump and his enablers have abandoned conservatism and longstanding Republican principles and replaced it with Trumpism, an empty faith led by a bogus prophet. In a recent survey, a majority of Republican voters reported that they consider Mr. Trump a better president than Lincoln.

To prove they know their historical shit, the column also includes a disquisition on Dan Sickles, about as necessary as the guitar solo in Wings’ “My Love.” But let me return to the excerpt. When Anderson, Bruford, Wakeman and Howe decry the “ugliness” and “meanness” with which the GOP “slander” men and women in the armed forces, I wonder if Rick Wilson remembers the ad he designed for Saxby Chambliss in 2002 in which he turned the amputee Max Cleland into a War on Terror quisling. When the trio lament how conservatism has lost its compass, I point them to Saint Ronnie’s deficits and Bush II’s tax cuts, as a result of which the Democrats succeeding them cleaned up the mess yet were denounced, in a ghastly and masterful act of projection, as tax-and-spend libs by Le Bon-Taylor-Taylor and their ilk. When further in the column the Powerpuff Girls denounce the president’s reduction of the vision thing “to what immediately faces him — the problems and risks he chronically brings upon himself and for which others, from countless contractors and companies to the American people, ultimately bear the heaviest burden,” I ask George Conway if he remembers his role in turning the Paula Jones lawsuit into the Monica Lewinsky case because Bill Clinton’s pecker wasn’t Ronnie or Poppy’s. When Moe, Larry, and Curly question Trump’s moral fitness, I poke Steve Schmidt and point to a photo of Sarah Palin, whom he created and later, when that MSNBC gig beckoned, wanted credit for destroying.

Did I mention the Iraq War?

Culmination or aberration, I ask often. Why not both? An aberrant culmination. Architects in the creation of a political party comprised of resentments toward women for wanting control of their bodies, the poor for begging for a stake in their government, and homosexuals for demanding the protections of the Fourteenth Amendment, Conway, Schmidt, and Wilson want a return to a Republicanism that spoke in reasonable sentences, offended no one by name, and offered token gestures of bipartisan comity — they want Chancellor Palpatine. Until they recognize that the conservatism they think Trumpists have sullied represents that conservatism’s late stage putrescence, they have no right to preen.