Saturday Report 11/11/23 - If Trump gets a second term, be worried. And if a bunch of independents (like Joe Manchin & Jill Stein) jump in to erode the democratic vote, be VERY VERY worried...
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— If Trump gets a second term, be worried. And if a bunch of third-party candidates like Joe Manchin & Jill Stein jump with the goal of eroding the Democratic vote, be really worried... Trump has now declared that if he’s elected he’ll end democracy in America in the first week after he’s inaugurated by invoking the Insurrection Act and sending the military into the streets to put down protests and impose martial law. Next, he says, he will begin the mass arrests of people who have offended him, from President Biden to activists like me and you. And this week his chances of getting elected got a big boost. In Florida in 2000, Ralph Nader on the Green Party’s ticket got 97,488 votes, while George W. Bush “won” Florida by 537 votes. It strains credulity to assert that the majority of Nader’s voters would have either voted for Bush or not voted at all, which is why when David Cobb ran for president on the Green Party ticket in 2004, he explicitly told people in swing states not to vote for him but to cast their ballots for John Kerry instead. Jill Stein had no such moral compunction with her Green Party candidacy in 2016: Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin provided Trump’s margin of victory in the Electoral College over Hillary Clinton, and, in each of those states, Stein pulled more votes than Trump’s margin. In Michigan she got 51,463 votes and Trump won by 10,704; in Pennsylvania she won 49,678 versus Trump’s margin of 46,765; and in Wisconsin Stein carried 31,006 votes but Trump only won by 22,177. In other words, had liberals not voted for Ralph Nader in Florida in 2000, Al Gore would have become president and we never would have been lied into two unnecessary and illegal wars; had people in Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin not voted for Jill Stein in 2016, Hillary Clinton would have become president and America would have been spared the trauma of 500,000 unnecessary Covid deaths and the ongoing assault to our democracy. This is apparently not lost on sour-grapes Jill Stein, by the way; she just announced she’s going to take another shot at helping get Donald Trump elected. Like Joe Manchin, her greed, vanity, and cynicism apparently know no bounds.
— Speaker Mike Johnson wants to end your right to birth control and, by the way, Ohio Republicans claim they’re going to ignore the state’s constitution and prosecute doctors and women who get abortions. When MAGA Mike was interviewed on Fox “News,” he feigned ignorance about his own legislative votes and the bill he sponsored to outlaw birth control pills and IUDs. That’s how dishonest this guy is. Last July the House held a vote on a bill that would have put into law a woman’s right to use birth control pills and devices that are “FDA approved”: Johnson voted against it. He also co-sponsored the Life at Conception Act (HR 431), a so-called “personhood” bill, that would outlaw birth control pills and IUDs as well as in-vitro fertilization (IVF). Slippery Mike also refuses to reveal to Congress anything about his personal finances: he’s using a loophole that only requires members of the House to reveal “interest bearing” accounts, which is the case for most checking and savings accounts. Mike, however, found a bank that offers a checking account that does not pay interest, so we’ll never find out who’s financing him or how much money he has. Along those same lines of Republicans defying the spirit of the law, GOP members of the Ohio legislature say they’re going to introduce legislation stripping from the state courts the ability to enforce the new constitutional amendment codifying the right to abortion. They claim the ballot measure only passed because of “foreign billionaires” (presumably a shot at their favorite boogeyman George Soros, aka “the International Jew”) and therefore they can ignore the will of Ohio’s voters. This is going to get interesting, and hopefully it will help Democrats flip Ohio back to Blue. Finally, Mike Johnson is in Paris today speaking to a conference of international rightwingers headlined by a man convicted of hate speech. As usual, they’re branding this fascist meeting with the word “freedom.” <sigh>
— Will the Senate Judiciary Committee ever vote on issuing subpoenas to billionaire Republican donor Harlan Crow and conservative judicial activist Leonard Leo? Thursday, Committee Chairman Dick Durban tried to hold a vote on Sheldon Whitehouse’s call for the two billionaires to testify before the Senate about their years of grooming Clarence Thomas, Sam Alito, and possibly others. Furious, Republicans on the committee submitted 88 amendments to the motion, effectively killing the subpoena and leading Durban to adjourn the meeting. Those Republicans — in case you’re represented by one and would like to let them know your opinion — are Josh Hawley (MO), John Kennedy (LA), Marsha Blackburn (TN), Mike Lee (UT), Lindsey Graham (SC), Chuck Grassley (IA), Ted Cruz (TX), Tom Cotton (AR), Thom Tillis (NC), and John Cornyn (TX). Democrats include: Dick Durbin (IL), Sheldon Whitehouse (RI), Amy Klobuchar (MN), Chris Coons (DE), Richard Blumenthal (CT), Mazie Hirono (HI), Cory Booker (NJ), Alex Padilla (CA), Jon Ossoff (GA), Peter Welch (VT), and Laphonza Butler (CA).
— Tommy Tuberville really is Trump’s useful idiot, performing Trump’s retribution against a military he believes confounded his coup and preparing the groundwork for his takeover in 2025. I’ve been saying this here and on my radio/TV show for months now: Tuberville was the only senator in Trump’s quarters in the DC Trump Hotel the night before January 6th and apparently deeply involved in planning the coup. Now he’s gutting the top levels of our military because, I believe, they refused to go along with Trump’s desire to have them shoot at protestors during the George Floyd protests and refused to seize voting machines the night of the 2020 election. For a while nobody with any sort of profile was willing to argue his motives were that sleazy and anti-American, but now former Clinton advisor Sidney Blumenthal has penned an op-ed in The Guardian essentially endorsing that view. Tuberville and his fellow travelers in the GOP Putin Caucus are doing everything they can to destroy this nation and our democratic systems and anybody with eyes can see it. When will the mainstream media catch on?
— Could the Swifties be the tipping point for Democrats in 2024? Taylor Swift called on her followers on Instagram to go to vote.org and register for the upcoming elections: over 40,000 did so. Both Jack Kennedy and Bill Clinton were particularly good at getting celebrities to support their candidacies, as was Obama during his re-election in 2012. Hopefully Swift is the leading edge of a vanguard of famous people with large followings who will bring new and young voters into the election next year.
— World population hits 8 billion and we're all living on ancient sunlight. The first 300,000 years of human history, when humanity was living on “current sunlight” (trees for fire, sunlight for crops), produced the first billion people in the year 1800, the same year Thomas Jefferson was elected president. The second billion, though, took only 130 years (1930) because we’d started liberating sunlight energy that had been trapped by plants over a period of hundreds of millions of years and stored as coal, oil, and methane gas. This week, according to the US Census Bureau, the planet hit 8 billion people: 7 billion more than the planet can support without fossil fuels. I wrote about this at length in my book The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight, and if we don’t rapidly transition to cleaner energy sources the human race is facing some really tough times ahead.
— Geeky Science! Only do what you’re good at, and don’t feel guilty about not being able to do what you’re bad at. I’ve been writing about ADHD for decades and have collected hundreds of stories by and about people who found ways to be successful either in spite of or even because of their “Hunter” attributes. My post this week at our new website, HuntersInAFarmersWorld.com, is about embracing what you do well and passing on what you do poorly without self-judgement. I tell the story of when Louise and I owned an advertising agency in Atlanta and hired a “Farmer” to do the paperwork for our 3 salespeople because they were all ADHD “Hunters” who were terrible at details but brilliant “on the hunt” for new clients. Check it out.
— Crazy Authoritarian Alert! Is Trump thinking about Tucker Carlson for VP? Donald Trump was interviewed this week on a rightwing radio talk show and agreed
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