Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Trump Says He Would Eat a Live Baby to Keep America Safe

Last night’s Republican debate produced some of the most heated moments of the 2016 Presidential race to date. The debate among the Republican frontrunners had the candidates in a verbal sparing match after a moderator asked the question: “What would you do to keep America safe from terrorism.” Former neurosurgeon Ben Carson answered first.

“At this very moment, I have a team of engineers working on what I call “TerrorScan,” a walk-through scanning device much like the ones used at airports, except this machine will detect terrorists. As President, I will make sure that every Muslim who comes to our shores will have to pass through the “TerrorScan.”

Ted Cruz spoke next.

“That’s a ridiculous idea, Ben. As your next President, l will only allow Muslims into America if they denounce Islam and convert to Christianity. Islam is a religion that breeds violence, totally unlike Christianity, which is a religion of peace. I will create a Christianity test all Muslims will need to take and pass in order to enter this country.”

Carly Fiorina responded.

“I will deny entry to any Muslim. If you haven’t seen the video of terrorists beheading nuns and wiping their rear ends with pages from the Bible, I urge you to watch it. It is horrifying and I don’t want those things to go on in my America. No more Muslims.”

But the loudest roar of approval from the audience came after Donald Trump’s unusually brief statement.

“How would I keep America safe from terrorists? I tell you, I would do anything to keep this country safe. This is serious business. If you came up to me and said, “Donald, the only thing that will keep America safe is if you eat a baby alive, then I would do it. I make that promise to you here and now. I would do it.”

After the debate, some pundits worried that Trump might lose the “mother vote,” but Trump’s campaign clarified his comment, saying that Donald would only eat an orphan baby.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Looney Tunes Tuesday: Your Daily News (with a cat thrown in)

The news on most days is generally a soul-numbing compendium of human violence, ignorance and hubris, but today’s stories seem particularly otherworldly. Here are snapshots of a few of this morning’s most entertaining stories.

The Woodland, NC Planning Commission banned a solar farm for fear it would suck up the sun’s energy and harm nearby vegetation.

Responding to a vague 911 call about a suspicious person in an Atlanta, Georgia neighborhood, cops broke into the wrong home, shot the homeowner’s dog, the homeowner and a fellow cop.

Donald Trump says EPA water regulations prevent him from washing his hair properly.

A Grand Rapids man took his rifle to a convenience store to kill a Muslim. He forced the dark-skinned cashier to the back room and put the rifle barrel in the man’s mouth, saying “I shot people like you overseas in the Middle East.” Problem was, the convenience store clerk was Indian and not a Muslim. He fought off the rifleman, but sustained a gunshot to his cheek.

The hottest product in China right now is bottled fresh air from Canada. In a related story, a Japanese company is selling a fabric spray that contains the scent of a cat’s forehead.

Speaking of Japan, in recent days 14 mysterious boats have washed up on Japanese shores containing two dozen headless and badly decomposed bodies. Many think the dead are from North Korea.

And in the “to nobody’s surprise” section, recently revealed documents show that the United States has been turning a blind eye to Shi’ite militias in Iraq who have been torturing and murdering Sunni jihadists for over 10 years, adding greatly to the instability of the region.

Saturday, December 12, 2015

The Corporate Media And Their Biased Coverage of Bernie Sanders

Fingers can point in many directions to explain the relatively rapid descent of America into a political morass where an egomaniacal fascist like Donald Trump can be considered a serious candidate for the Presidency — income inequality, the death of the Middle Class, Wall Street greed, the rise of the surveillance state, constant war — but at the top of my list is the corporate media.

President Eisenhower’s warning about the rise of the “military/industrial complex” is heavily cited as a forecast that unfortunately came true, but there arose a third force that Ike did not see at the time that now forms a triumvirate of nightmarish influence over this country, the corporate media.

Owned by a handful of extremely wealthy elitists, the corporate media is the one percent’s propaganda tool used to keep Americans distracted, uninformed and good little consumers. A most recent example of this is the skewed coverage of the candidates running for President by the major news outlets.

According to the Tyndall Report, which tracks stories on the network news programs, between January 1, 2015 and the end of November, ABC “World News Tonight” devoted 81 minutes of coverage to Donald Trump and less than one minute to Bernie Sanders. The report found that all of the major news programs were guilty of Trump overkill with a total of 234 total network minutes for the Donald compared to just 10 minutes of reporting on Sanders. That’s over almost a year period.

There are two reasons for this obvious bias on the part of the mainstream corporate media. First there’s entertainment value. Trump is outrageous, monstrous and a born entertainer. He shocks every time he opens his mouth and that makes for great entertainment (under the guise of news) that viewers eat up, whether their Republicans or Democrats. Sanders, on the other hand, is seen as a crotchety old man and too much of a scold. Boooring.

But there’s a stealthier effort going on here as well. Of all the candidates running for President, none of them represent as big a threat to the elites as Sanders. For all of his insane statements, Trump is one of them, and Sanders is definitely not. Sanders and his Democratic Socialist agenda represent a threat to the status quo, the deep state the ruling elite, and because of this, they want him on television, and exposed to the public, as little as possible.

Just like Time magazine’s failure to make Sanders “Person of the Year” despite his win in the popularity poll, the corporate press will do everything in its power to keep the progressive Democrat in the wings, while giving the howling fascist demagogue Trump center stage.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Short Scary Story - The Boy in the Mirror

You're son is a budding psychopath who claims he's being controlled by a boy in his bedroom mirror. Is it just his twisted imagination or something more? Find out at That's Going Too Far!

Monday, December 07, 2015

Should We Allow America To Destroy Itself in Order To Save It?

Ralph Nader has been saying it for decades: The two-party system in America is a lose/lose game, with both parties prostrating themselves to the moneyed gods of Wall Street and K Street while the American people sink deeper into a listless sleep to avoid dealing with the ugly reality of a dying democracy.

A recent article in Salon grapples with the issue that Nader and others have raised, which is, at its core, that we may need to let America hit rock bottom before a large swath of citizens will wake up to the reality that conservative ideology in general, and the Republican Party in particular, offer nothing that will help this country become a healthy democracy again.

The title of the Salon article is, “Just Let the Republicans Win: Maybe Things Have to Get Really Bad for America to Wake Up.” The author discusses the pros and cons of not voting for Hillary if she receives the nomination from the Democrats, and I think many of the arguments are on the money. If we progressives keep acquiescing to the establishment Democrats, we will keep getting candidates like Bill Clinton, Kerry, Obama and now Hillary, luke warm liberals who, once they’re in office, rush to the ideological center to keep the one percent happy.

Roosevelt’s New Deal may not have seen the light of day if not for the Great Depression. We as a country might need to fall hard again to remind ourselves that America is supposed to have a government of, for and by the people, not the billionaires or corporations or the military/industrial/media complex.

Like the Salon article’s author, I have yet to decide what I’ll do if Hillary wins the Democratic nomination. The one option not discussed in the essay is a massive write in campaign for Sanders. Either way, 2016 could be the election when progressives say enough is enough, and let this country have the President it deserves.

Saturday, December 05, 2015

Unveiling the Cheney Bust: U.S. Honors an International Criminal

On Friday, the House of Representatives unveiled a marble bust of Dick Cheney in the Emancipation Hall of the U.S. Capital. Instead of putting Cheney and the rest of the Bush administration in jail for crimes against humanity, he is honored with a statue and lauded by those attending the ceremony (including Vice President Joe Biden) for his illusionary service to his country.

To mark this display of unbelievable hubris, I offer this new definition of American Exceptionalism: If you are exceptionally rich and powerful, you can get away with anything.

Thursday, December 03, 2015

More Facts to Shut Up Your Ignorant Uncle Al This Holiday Season

In a recent poll of historians, 61% agreed that George W. Bush was the worst President the United States has ever had. So as you try to enjoy your eggnog at the Christmas family gathering, but a drunk Uncle Al starts yapping about how bad a President Obama is, use your phone to pull up this handy chart, and tell Uncle Al to shut his pie hole. You're welcome.

Tuesday, December 01, 2015

Hate America? Vote Republican.

Where do we as a society draw the line between far right wing ideology and mental illness? How have we gotten to the point in the United States where we will have a presidential election featuring one candidate who straddles that grey line, who makes Elmer Fudd look like a Mensa member, and who, if elected President, will almost certainly drag our country into the depths of despair?

Think about a President who would condone the actions of the American terrorist who killed three people at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado. Think about a President who doesn’t believe in man-made global warning and who’ll do nothing to reduce our toxic emissions, and may even push to increase them. Think about a President who doesn’t accept the separation of church and state, and actively pushes an agenda to make America a Christian theocracy. Think about a President who prefers war to diplomacy and sees violent intervention as a strategy of first choice. And finally, think about a President who does not understand or care about our Constitution, and who will think nothing of violating it in the pursuit of creating an ultra-conservative/fascist government.

Our system of governance in America is broken. Next November, we will likely have a choice between a Wall Street-endorsed establishment Democrat and a borderline mental case. This is what we’ve come to, and to all of the liberals and progressives who are in denial, who are certain Cruz or Carson or Trump could never win the White House, all I can say is wake the fuck up. Our elections are rigged and have nothing to do with the will of the people. If the one percent and the Deep State want a Republican to win, a Republican will win.

Although I’m not Harold Camping predicting the end of the world, I think America is at a crossroads. Should any one of the Republican candidates prove victorious next November, it will herald the end of the United States as most of us know it. Our country already has serious problems that need to be addressed, from income inequality to campaign finance reform to a crumbling infrastructure, and the only thing I can say for certain is that if a Republican is elected President, all of those issues and more will only get worse.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

The Far Right Has Found its Fascist Strongman in Trump

His dais is so high, he towers over the millions of devotees sending up a vocal tsunami of loving cheers. Behind him his face is projected, his squinting eyes and puckered lips are ten stories tall, the face of a giant, stern God that rotates slowly from side to side. He wears a tan military coat with a purple sash covered in ribbons and medals that glint in the sunlight. At the perimeter of the throng, military personal stand at attention in lines as straight as razor blades, interspersed with huge tanks and missiles. Finally, he holds out his arms and almost immediately, the massive crowd goes silent. He slowly lowers his arms and leans forward.

“I have made America great again.”

The roar is deafening.

Yes, Donald Trump is the fascist strongman the Far Right in America longs for with a passion. He is the autocratic father, the figurehead of strength and fearlessness that a weak and listless country needs to raise it up from a socialist nanny state to a broad shouldered warrior for freedom. The Donald does not discuss issues, he makes proclamations and issues edicts. Debating facts is for whiny losers. The world he believes in is all that matters, and it is a paternalistic, white, capitalist game board where he sets the rules and if you don’t like it, you can shut the fuck up or his goons will beat the crap out of you.

When considered in the light of the strongman, Trump’s appeal makes more sense to me. Ultra conservatives are drawn to fascism. Extreme Christianity meets politics in this worldview, where the chosen father (God, Christ, Hitler, Jim Jones) is given supreme power to wisely and steadfastly lead the faithful to victory. Charismatic, articulate and absolutely sure of himself, the strongman pulls you into supporting his vision of the world through the power of his will and unwavering certainty. To a believer, it almost doesn’t matter what the strongman says. His words are on another realm hovering above mere logic, rationality and even common sense. The very fact that the liberal media, the elites and the establishment revile him so much only serves to strengthen the resolve of his followers who know that he is here to save us from ourselves. Persecution only strengthens the cause.

In the evil world of the godless, reality-based secularists, Trump is a narcissistic, egomaniacal blowhard who would be restrained in a straightjacket in more rational times, but to his believers, those are his attributes. Jim Jones, Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, David Koresh, Charles Manson — they all combined a mixture of characteristics that drew people to them in a way that defied all logic, and that from the outside looking in, you would be able to see the horror of it all like a car accident unfolding in slow motion you could do nothing about.

Donald Trump is not a brave man. He used a number of deferments to avoid going to Vietnam. Donald Trump is certainly not a smart man nor is he a man that historically has shown any concern for the plight of the less fortunate Americans he wants to preside over, but he does know his flock, and he can play to it like a perfectly tuned instrument.

Could Trump be America’s first strongman, a President willing to blatantly and openly defy the Constitution and the rule of law? As frightening as that sounds, in this day of overt gerrymandering, hackable voting machines, terrorist paranoia and the influence of money in politics, it seems alarmingly possible, although I can’t go so far as to say probable. Not yet, anyway.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Give Your Conservative Relatives the Gift of Knowledge This Holiday Season

As promised, here is the second installment of “How to get your obnoxious, conservative Uncle Al to STFU at the next family gathering.” If he starts rambling incoherently about how terrible Obama is as president, just whip out the chart above on your phone and watch the steam come from Uncle Al’s ears. Hopefully, Al won’t pull out his concealed weapon and threaten you, because we know he sees violence as a viable means of ending arguments, but what the heck, it’ll be a holiday to remember.

Merry Xmas

Friday, November 20, 2015

Latest Short Scary Story - "I'll Never Die"

I'm not very comfortable with self-promotion, but I posted a short scary story on Reddit that has been getting a lot of favorable responses. Here are some examples:

 “This is fantastic :) Well done.”

“Kudos. Applause”


“I. Love. This.”

“Loved every second of this story, kudos!"

It's now posted on my short story blog, "They're Only Shadows." Check it out. Thanks.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Why Can’t We Understand There Will Be No Military Victory in the Middle East?

The war drums grow louder. If the Paris attacks show us anything, they reveal that the West has learned nothing about the Middle East over the past thirty years. The calls from Western leaders for more bombs, more troops and more civil liberty restrictions play directly into the hands of the terrorists, and will solve nothing.

We helped create Al Qaeda and ISIS by financially and militarily supporting those groups fighting the Russians in the 1990s, fearing the expansion of the Russian empire more than the threat of terrorism, and now it has come back to bite us in the ass. Worst of all, we’ve continued supporting ISIS in the hopes they will overthrow Assad in Syria. We never seem to learn that attempting regime change through proxy fighters always has unintended consequences that are bad for the U.S.

We will never bomb away terrorism, and in our futile attempts to destroy ISIS we actually create more terrorists, yet our leaders call for more blood. The terrorists who carried out the Paris attacks were Europeans, so should we drop bombs on Brussels or London?

Our foreign policies regarding the Middle East need to change. Bush and Cheney poured the gas and lit the match by invading Afghanistan and Iraq, and, after 12 years, it should be obvious to anyone that continued military action in the region only perpetuates more terrorism in the West, and will not stop it. It’s time for all of the factions to talk to each other, and for the West to stop the military madness before we ignite WWIII.

Monday, November 16, 2015

The Foolish and Frightening Republican Response to the Paris Attacks


How many other ways can I describe the Republican’s response to the Paris terrorist attacks?

If Trump were President, he would “seriously consider” closing all American mosques, and he tweeted that the attacks might have been prevented if Paris didn’t have such strict gun control laws. Cruz, Rubio and Bush want to drop more bombs on ISIS than Obama because it’s been working so well. Louisiana Governor Jindal wants to bar all Syrian refugees from our borders. The pundit who is paid to be wrong about everything, Bill Kristal, wants to send 50,000 troops to fight ISIS. Ben Carson can’t name America’s international allies and is absolutely clueless about what America’s reaction to a terrorist attack should be. And in related news, Jeb Bush only wants us to help Christian Syrians. According to Bush, in this situation, Jesus would want Syrian Muslims to rot and die.

George Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld helped get us where we are today with their ill-conceived, ill-planned attacks on Afghanistan and Iraq, and Republican voters seem to want to elect a President who vows to make the situation in the Middle East worse than it already is. Without connecting the simplest dots, the GOP loons are advocating actions that could ignite WWIII. And in the case of a few of the more religious zealots like Carson and Cruz, this could very well be their intention.

I think all of the Republican candidates should be required to be participants in the show “Are You Smarter Than a Five-Year Old?” The answer for all of them would be a resounding “no.” Voting for anyone who is running on the Republican ticket for President is an act of national suicide and those people should be forced to wear red stickers that say, “I Voted…for America’s Destruction.”

The Paris attacks gives us a glimpse at the leadership skills and crises responses of the Republicans running for President, and that should scare the hell out of all of us.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

New Short Scary Story - The Cellmate

Tray McNair was a prisoner in the city jail, but he soon becomes the prisoner of a much darker force. Check out my latest short scary story at They're Only Shadows.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Terrorist Strike in Paris and the Other Major News Story of the Day

Today we mourn and send our sympathies to the families and friends of the dead and wounded in yesterday's attacks in Paris. Killing innocent men, women and children is the coward’s way, and those responsible for the Paris attacks must be brought to justice for the crime of murder. Acts of terror such as this are just that, actions intended to terrorize and intimidate enemies, so the best way to battle these atrocities is for the citizens of France to stay strong, courageous and unified.

 That said, I want address a related comment I saw on Reddit. A person added a post with the headline: Pay close attention to what events that are being overshadowed by the Paris attacks. Now this can be understood in two ways. The author could be implying that the attacks were staged to cover up an important piece of news or that we shouldn’t lose sight of other significant news happening during this time period. I lean toward the second interpretation, but either way, there is a major story in the news today that is probably not getting the attention it deserves.

In an article in Slate, we now know that in the months prior to 9/11 Bush, Cheney and National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice received urgent intelligence on numerous occasions that there was an imminent attack about to happen on U.S. soil, and did nothing. Here is an excerpt: 

"In a blockbuster account by Chris Whipple, based on interviews he did for a Showtime documentary, former chief of the CIA’s counterterrorism center Cofer Black and former CIA director George Tenet described how they spent the months leading up to 9/11 trying to warn the White House that a spectacular attack was imminent and that the country needed to take urgent action, but to no avail."

Tenet became so alarmed by the intel the CIA was receiving that he called for an urgent meeting with Rice to warn of an imminent terrorist attack. Rice did nothing in response.

 What this means is that there were many more serious and specific warnings about a terrorist attack in American than the Bush administration ever admitted to. Condi Rice’s statement after 9/11 that nobody could have imagined planes hitting skyscrapers turns out to be a blatant lie, as there were many such warnings. The question of course, is why?

 Was it the sheer incompetence of the Bush White House to brush off such dire warnings or was something else going on? Why weren’t Tenet’s concerns addressed and serious efforts made to thwart such a terrorist plot? Was it incompetence or the “new Pearl Harbor” that Cheney and the neocons in Washington needed to initiate their wars in the Middle East?

Friday, November 13, 2015

America the War Machine

Like all Americans born in this country, I was raised on propaganda. I was told America was exceptional, we only fought wars when we had to and the cause was righteous, war was always a last resort and we, as a country, worked to maintain peace and freedom around the globe. These are, of course, lies. Let me introduce you to author Nick Turse who wrote a book titled, “Tomorrow’s Battlefield: U.S. Proxy Wars and Secret Ops in Africa.” Here are some facts from that book that demonstrate exactly how hard America works for international peace and freedom. 
  • American special ops have been sent to a record 147 countries — that’s 75% of the nations on the planet.
  • This represents a 145% increase from the days of George W. Bush.
  • On any given day, elite U.S. forces are on the ground in 70 to 90 countries.
  • The U.S. military is involved in more than 90% of Africa’s 54 nations.
 In a recent poll, people from around the world were asked what country they felt was the biggest threat to world peace, and the U.S. won hands down. We have turned into a military monster whose answer to every international challenge is a bomb or a bullet. We murder innocent people routinely with our drones. We actively work to overthrow leaders we don’t like, despite the will of the people. The U.S. is by far the world’s largest weapons exporter, and we spend more on our military than China, Russia, the UK and 10 other countries COMBINED.

The U.S. has become a giant murder and mayhem machine, shooting up foreign countries for fun and profits, and to continue justifying its obscene defense spending. We are not respected around the world, but feared. What country will we invade or bomb next? What foreign leader will be assassinated next? In what country will we instigate a phony people’s uprising next? Which whistleblower will be arrested or murdered next?

Thanks to the politicians who manufacture the fear and the industries who make trillions in profits from war, we’ve managed to turn America the beautiful into America the despised. Our brand is no longer freedom and democracy, but death and destruction. How long will the rest of world put up with us?

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

New Short Scary Story - It Runs in the Family

Spiders. I hate spiders, but they can be fun to write about. Check out my latest short scary story at They're Only Shadows and get a case of the creepy crawlies.

Tis the season to torch the arguments of your FOX News-watching relatives

As Thanksgiving and Christmas loom closer and closer on the calendar, we’re all preparing for fun-filled family gatherings and…Uncle Al. Almost every family has an Uncle Al, the loud, obnoxious conservative who, after a few cocktails, starts railing against the communist Kenyan guy in the White House and all of the liberal political correctness of the holiday season. He watches FOX News and believes he is hearing the unvarnished truth the leftist media won’t publish.

As my contribution to the family holiday festivities, during the season I will be posting real facts to counter the gibberish of Uncle Al, simple, easy to understand retorts that should (but probably wont) shut dear Al’s pie hole. The first is related to the economy. If Uncle Al starts saying anything like, “Obama’s ruined the economy,” or “Name one good thing Obama’s done,” just pull up the above chart on your iPhone and show it to Al. I guarantee you he won’t like it.

Happy Holidays, Bill O'Reilly.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Ben Carson Should Not Be Allowed Anywhere Near the White House

Just a couple of observations about Republican presidential candidate Ben Carson.

Carson has said some very strange and troubling things during this campaign. He has also, so it appears, lied about parts of his life story, and was in full defense mode all of last week after the media checked into some of his claims. But here’s the thing that gets to me: Who makes a serious run for the presidency and DOESN’T expect his or her background to be investigated? It was the same thing for Bush, who apparently thought his personal history should be off limits to journalists.  Yet Carson is shocked, shocked I tell you, that his past is being scrutinized by the media. WTF? You’re a freakin’ brain surgeon and you don’t have the ability to understand that as a presidential candidate your past will be investigated? Something’s off here and it’s either the size of his ego or IQ.

The second issue relating to Carson is truly a fundamental one. As mentioned above, Carson has said some seriously batty stuff during this campaign, like the biblical Joseph built the pyramids to store grain and that being in prison can turn you gay. The way I see it there are only two situations that can explain Ben Carson’s loony beliefs: Either he really believes what he’s saying, which is a serious indictment of our education system in America, or that he is only saying crazy things to appeal to the Right’s lunatic fringe, which makes him one of the most disingenuous, manipulative people to ever run for office. I don’t really know the answer to this conundrum, but as more and more evidence emerges that he is a pathological liar, I might cast my vote for the latter.

Monday, November 09, 2015

It’s Hard to Believe, But America is Using Drones to Perpetuate the War on Terror

In the concluding paragraph of an excellent piece in Counterpunch titled, “Reaper Madness: Obama’s Whack-A-Mole Killing Machine,” Doug Noble writes,

“What I’ve tried to show here is something more:  that these military miscreants have also known all along that their drone technology and targeting strategy are militarily bankrupt. They could not but be aware from military history and doctrine that these approaches have absolutely no possibility of defeating terrorist groups or keeping America safe. They must know that in fact the opposite is true, that their nefarious enterprise only further endangers us all. And yet they will continue ever more brazenly their Reaper madness, the scholars here all agree, until we find some way to stop them.”

This begs the question: Why, if the military knows drone strikes are counterproductive, de we keep using drones? I believe there’s only one plausible answer. America must have an enemy. In order to sustain our bloated, massively expensive military/industrial/media complex, we must have an evil “other” to do battle with, to justify the obscene amounts of taxpayer dollars being sucked into the black hole of “national security.”

The end of the Cold War and the communist empire ushered in a vacuum that was quickly filled with a new enemy, international terrorism. The 1990s saw the rise of the Taliban and Al Qaeda, organizations the U.S. helped create and arm, but it wasn’t until the new Pearl Harbor of 9/11 that the war on terror shifted into high gear.

From the American perspective, the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq were just what the military ordered, but after well over a decade of fighting, it became obvious to even the most hawkish cheerleaders (except Dick Cheney) that the wars were a debacle that did far more harm than good. But we couldn’t just pick up our marbles and go home without somehow continuing the war on terrorists and unfriendly regimes in the region, so we sent in the drones.

Although many experts outside of Washington D.C. agree that the use of drones is ineffective and even counterproductive, Obama is enlarging the program, which for me, means that by the government’s reasoning, that’s exactly the point. Killing civilians means keeping the populace stirred up and angry at America which means more terrorists that we need to fight and the cycle continues ad nauseam. As horrible as it sounds, what other explanation can there be? 

The war on terror is a self-perpetuating farce designed to focus Americans away from the issues we face at home and keep the military/industrial/media complex fat and well-funded.

Saturday, November 07, 2015

Despite All Logic, a Republican Could Win the White House

So let’s take a step back and see where we’re at with the Republican presidential candidates after a couple of debates. We have the back-of-the-pack group who, if they had any sense whatsoever, should all throw in the towel and issue public apologies for wasting everyone’s time. Among the so-called front runners we have a guy who calls himself a libertarian, but who is really a Tea Party conservative minus the religious fervor, a woman who is trying desperately to rewrite her personal history of business failures, several religious fanatics, a bumbling Bush, a whiny, arrogant billionaire and, at the steering wheel of the crazy bus, a neurosurgeon and pathological liar who believes that the biblical Joseph built the pyramids.

The Republican presidential candidates are living, breathing representations of everything that is wrong with America, from a parochial, puritanical religious extremism to a rejection of science to war mongering to an allegiance to the wealthy and powerful over the rest of America’s citizens. If any one of them manages to win the White House, and Republicans maintain control of Congress, this country is in serious trouble.

To make matters worse, there are troubling stories out of Kentucky and Ohio that election results in those two states may have been rigged. In the Ohio case, there is clear evidence of votes flipping related to the legal marijuana ballot, with screen shots showing the votes changing automatically from “yes” to “no.” In every election since voting machines were introduced, there have been questionable results, almost always favoring Republican candidates. This is a huge issue that goes to core of what makes a democracy and democracy and should be a high priority for the Justice Department, but it doesn’t seem to be.

Gerrymandering, electronic vote hacking, state requirements making it harder for minorities to vote, fat cats bankrolling campaigns…Republicans are growing more and more desperate as their base of voters grows older and dies off. The most depressing aspect of this is that the tricks work, just look at Bush’s 2000 win, and no one within the system is strong enough or brave enough to take on the fight.

If anyone thinks that there’s no way one of those Republican lunatics could win the Presidential election, I’m afraid there’s ample evidence that it could indeed happen, if only by hook and crook.

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Yesterday’s Elections and the American Death Spiral

As yesterday’s local and statewide elections demonstrated, American democracy continues its downward death spiral. Politically disillusioned, disappointed and dis-engaged young people, people of color, liberals and progressives stayed away from the polls in droves, allowing older conservative white voters to rule the day. That is the death spiral in which we find ourselves. Many would-be voters have simply given up. And you know what? It’s hard to blame them.

In the nineties we voted for a presidential candidate who sounded liberal during his two campaigns, but once in office, slid to the right. We did it again in 2008 and 2012, falling for the liberal, populist rhetoric of Obama, only to see him shape-shift into a moderate Republican after he was given the keys to the White House. And it’s not just in our heads. A recent study by Princeton University professors revealed that the average American, whether that person votes or not, has virtually no influence in government policymaking. The concluding paragraph of Testing Theories of American Politics: Elites, Interest Groups and Average Americans reads:

Despite the seemingly strong empirical support in previous studies for theories of majoritarian democracy, our analyses suggest that majorities of the American public actually have little influence over the policies our government adopts. Americans do enjoy many features central to democratic governance, such as regular elections, freedom of speech and association, and a wide-spread (if still contested) franchise. But we believe that if policymaking is dominated by powerful business organizations and a small number of affluent Americans, then America’s claims to being a democratic society are seriously threatened.” 

I would argue that far from being merely threatened, democracy in America has been hijacked by the one percent, with the help of the Supreme Court, and we now live in an oligarchy. I don’t encourage people not to vote, but I understand the reasoning. Elections have become exercises in futility and the only citizens that have any influence in Washington are those with the deepest pockets.

Tuesday, November 03, 2015

The Girl Next Door - A New Scary Short Story

The girl next door isn't exactly the kid you'd like your child to play with. Find out why by visiting They're Only Shadows.

Monday, November 02, 2015

America’s Deadly Reality Gap

Why is there such a Grand Canyon size reality gap in America? How is it that a significant number of citizens can live in a reality that allows them to take the Republican presidential candidates seriously? How can there be so many people that seem to agree with the inane, hateful, dumber-than-a-five-year-old comments that leak out like waste from a broken sewer line from the mouths of Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Ted Cruz and the other mental asylum escapees?

This country’s red states and rural areas in blue states have more in common with third world countries than the rest of the United States, with their substandard education, religious extremism, anti-science bias, rigid patriarchy and bigotry. Ben Carson is now leading the Republicans because he saw what Trump was doing and new he either had to go batshit crazy or go home. He clearly chose the former, and every day there’s a new headline with a Carson quote that’s more insane than yesterday’s, and conservative America can’t get enough.

America has truly become an ideological two-state country. Unfortunately for all of us, amoral Republican candidates are more than willing to represent the interests of the military/industrial/media complex, and their legitimacy is propped up by billionaire’s, who could give a shit about what happens to we mere mortals, and their propaganda machine, also known as the national news media.

Of course, it all comes back to money and power. If you got it, you call the shots. If you don’t, and that’s 99 percent of us, you get to watch the show they like to call democracy, which is really an oligarchy, and pretend you have a part to play in this 21st century tragedy. 

Saturday, October 31, 2015

I'm going to scare some people tonight

I'm going to dress up tonight as Bernie Sanders and scare the crap out of my conservative neighbors.

"For God's sake don't open the door, Sharon. It's a...a...SOCIALIST!

Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Republican's Benghazi Blunder

The political sites I visit online are all leading off with articles about Hillary Clinton extending her lead over Bernie Sanders in the polls. Gee, why the sudden surge in popularity for Hillary? Let me think….


That’s right, folks. We have the walking brain-dead Republicans to thank for Clinton’s sudden rise in popularity. It apparently never occurred to any of them that a calm, articulate, intelligent woman being hounded for eleven hours by a rabid, redneck lynch mob might not play well with the public. So wrapped up in their delusional hatred of Clinton, Congressional Republicans gave full voice to their ignorance and ineptitude last week, and voters are responding accordingly.

The failure of the Benghazi witch hunt is just the latest example of how out of touch with reality Republicans have become. Just look at their presidential candidates. Their only concern right now is who can throw the largest chunk of red meat to their loony followers and, as of today, that honor goes to Ben Carson. I can hear Carson preparing for tonight’s Republican debate right now.

Carson: I don’t believe abortion is right under any circumstances.
Consultant: Crazier.
Carson: I don’t think abortion is right under any circumstances, and any woman who even thinks about it should be arrested.
Consultant: Give me more crazy, Ben.
Carson: I don’t think abortion is right under any circumstances, and all women should be jailed for the term of their pregnancy to prevent any abortions.
Consultant: Perfect.

No one, not even some Republicans, believed the Benghazi hearings were anything but a partisan hit job on Hillary. The fact that the pinhead Gowdy and his posse thought this public hearing would be a good thing for Republicans simply blows my mind. Lost in their delusional fog, Republicans continue to believe that they can bend reality to justify their ideology, but that never has and never will work.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

The Chess Match - A New Scary Short Story

Chess is more than a game for Kevin Holt, as his deceitful wife discovers too late. Read The Chess Match and other short scary stories at They're Only Shadows.

Monday, October 19, 2015

More Iraq Lies Unearthed

A newly released memo shows that in 2002 then British Prime Minister Tony Blair pledged his support to the Bush Administration for an invasion of Iraq a full year before the attack took place. During that year, he lied continuously to the British people claiming that he was seeking peaceful means for dealing with Iraq, while he had actually committed himself to be part of an armed invasion of that country.

That’s bad enough, but it also strengthens the argument made by some that the Bush administration had been planning an attack on Iraq from day one. Depending on where you stand, 9/11 was the fortunate Pearl Harbor moment that allowed the administration an opening to invade Iraq, or was a government orchestrated event intended for just that purpose.

It has to make one wonder. We know Cheney and Bush wanted very badly to bring down Saddam Hussein, that they were loathe to leave the vast oil reserves in Iraq to an avowed enemy and (from the PNAC documents) wanted a strong military presence in the Middle East. So along comes 9/11, and in our moment of panic, the media and the American people gave the neocons in the administration a blank check to take away our Constitutional rights at home and kill hundreds of thousands of people in the Mideast. Doesn’t that strike you as an amazing coincidence?  On a September morning early in Bush’s first term, the physical manifestations of our economic and military might are attacked and thousands of Americans die, and this event allows him to do exactly what he and Cheney and the other administration necons want to do. 

For me, it is too much of a coincidence. From my reading and research, I am convinced 9/11 was an inside job, a false flag event, intended to gain support for an illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Morning After

Perhaps even more interesting than the Democratic debate itself is the reaction of the mainstream press on this morning after. The media has quickly declared Hillary Clinton the winner, but polls taken after the debate (CNN among others) indicate those watching it felt that Bernie Sanders won. What’s going on?

Let’s start with the obvious. CNN is owned by TBS, aka Time Warner who is Hillary’s seventh largest donor. In addition, Anderson Cooper, the debate moderator, works for the Clinton Initiative. Only six or seven mega-corporations own virtually all of the media and entertainment in America, and they are, of course, run by the 1%. Do you think they want a democratic socialist to sit in the Oval Office? Of course not.

One glaring example I came across this morning was on Yahoo’s landing page. There were three featured stories on the debates. None of these teasers included a photo of Sanders or mentioned Sanders in their leads. They all focused exclusively on Clinton, with one dual image of Clinton and Joe Biden, who wasn’t even in the debate. The mainstream media’s agenda couldn’t be any clearer than that.

You don’t have to be a conspiracy theorist to believe this country’s elites are stacking the deck against Sanders, and today’s reaction to the debate is living proof. America’s wealthiest citizens fear a Sander’s win, and for good reason. The question I and others have is how far will they go to keep him out of the White House?

Friday, October 09, 2015

Why the Mainstream Media is Failing Us

I think Paul Kurgman is brilliant and agree with his positions most of the time, but his latest commentary, published in the New York Times today, comes off being a bit on the naïve side. In this piece, Krugman wonders why the media keeps allowing Republicans to say the most ridiculous things without any push back. The Benghazi hearings are a perfect example. It’s been clear from the start to anyone paying attention that the Congressional hearings were nothing more than an effort to score political points against Hillary Clinton, yet the mainstream media has treated this blatantly political circus as if it were a serious inquiry.

In his essay, Krugman writes:

"Sometimes I have the impression that many people in the media consider it uncouth to acknowledge, even to themselves, the fraudulence of much political posturing. The done thing, it seems, is to pretend that we’re having real debates about national security or economics even when it’s both obvious and easy to show that nothing of the kind is actually taking place."

He’s clearly right about the failings of the mainstream press, but neglects to mention the true motive behind the networks’ approach to politics in America: Money. In a capitalist society such as ours, profits are all that matter, and everything else needs to take a seat at the back of the bus. This includes morality and even truth. The reason why the media pretends “we’re having real debates about nation security and economics” is purely financial. The truth would alienate viewers, and no network wants to do anything that will cause their viewers to switch channels or cancel a subscription.

So we live in a fantasy world were the most outrageous lies can be said with a straight face and reported as fact. Instead of a government-controlled media we have a corporate controlled media that serves the interests of the one percent, which basically amounts to the same thing. It’s all propaganda dressed up as objective news.