The Ukrainian offensive against the Russians (in a war that should have never been started in the first place) proves an old point all over again. Authoritarian governments are terrible ways to run any country. Corruption and lies in authoritarian governments destroy the interests of the people and lead to death and destruction. Biblically it was termed “without a vision the people perish”; but we see groups of people conspiring to create authoritarian movements in our country today. Republicans surround Trump and lie to keep him in power and relevant. The question is what do they think will happen when such a broken person has power? Voting in our near future (possibly as long as several elections) will be an exercise in purging those who love authoritarians out of government power. Republicans have allowed their party to be turned into a clear threat to democracy. Research the issues and vote like your life depends on it. Climate change has to be addressed in the near future (just like women’s rights, voting rights, and many other issues). The time for games and foolishness is over or humanity will face dire consequences.
Politics in America grows more virulent as the country becomes weaker. Why is this happening? Some people say that America’s democratic structure makes it a weak nation, but we can see the results of autocracy in Russia: pathetic failure on many fronts. The problem in America is not that idiotic characters are elected and continuously lie; it is that so many people are motivated to overlook criminality and deception believing they will gain in the end. IF Republicans regain control of Congress and then the presidency: America will have a Wiley Coyote moment; over a cliff waiting to fall. America’s strength has been core values that were not always dominant, but left this country more virtuous than the competition. Americans now threaten to turn the country over to criminals to achieve law and order as absurd as that is. Abraham Lincoln said that America could not be conquered from without but only from within. We are dangerously close to a majority of Americans agreeing to a suicide pact with Republicans. Make sure that no one is above the law (hold all January 6th conspirators accountable) and don’t reward consistent liars or idiots; seek the truth and act to save the American Republic.
NATO countries are confronting Russia in Ukraine after years of rampage against Democracy by Putin and his oligarchs. Putin seems driven to undermine democratic governments wherever he can based on his track record. Attacks using dark money, social media, and cyber have been breakthrough tools weaponized by the Putin syndicate. Putin has subdued Russia over the last decade plus, and moved on to external targets including the United States. Ukrainians have rightly claimed that their fight is the fight of all freedom-loving people and history proves them correct. Murders in Europe to intimidate dissidents, sneaky invasions to add territory to Russia, Propaganda, Racism, and support for criminal/far-right politicians (Assad in Syria, Orban in Hungary, Trump in the US, for example). America dodged a bullet when we elected Joe Biden and defeated Trump who wanted to walk in Putin’s authoritarian footsteps. Trump and his January 6 conspirators must still be held accountable before we can move on to strengthen our Republic; but Ukrainians are in the same fight. The fight against lying thugs who want to create a world in their own image and a hell for decent people.
A core characteristic of evil is the belief that what one person desires is more important than what others want. Putin and his followers in Russia believe that what they want matters more than what the people of Ukraine want. Ukrainian refugees who abuse persons of color also attempting to escape war are guilty of exhibiting the same characteristic. I am not saying the evil acts are the same. I want to point out and clarify that evil can easily exist in any human being. The way that we can fight evil is to be clear about what it is. Rabbi Hillel described the Old Testament as telling us to ‘treat others as we would wish to be treated’; but modern life is full of examples and prompts that lead us to diminish others to maximize ourselves. Prompts for evil can be subtle or overt; a real estate commercial with testimonials from customers who all happen to NOT be Black or Asian people (are they too different or not transact real estate?), A presidential candidate telling police to handle suspects roughly, a political party denying accountability for criminal behavior while constantly lying and then saying “both sides do it”, state legislatures reducing the rights of women to control their bodies. Jesus told us “you will know the truth and the truth will set you free”. Liars attack decency and reality because they want to set up a world that puts them at the top of a hierarchy with EVERYONE else diminished. Do not buy the fascist idea that your group or tribe will be elevated over others, ultimately liars play everyone else for pawns in their delusional pursuit of power. Real power comes from controlling ourselves, not stealing it from others. Demand the truth and hold liars who damage reality to undermine others and aggrandize themselves accountable. Having a decent world depends on us being warriors against evil in all of it’s forms.
Examples of Republican weakness in the face of an attempted fascist takeover byTrump and his followers continues to grow. Many Republican officeholders appear to have participated in a conspiracy to overthrow a democratic election in 2020; but former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich threatens Democrats with imprisonment if they keep investigating. The saying that power corrupts absolutely is played out daily in front of the American people by Republicans who offer racism and victimization of the other as a rationale to vote for obviously corrupt liars. We can no longer pretend that both sides do it when one party has made an effort to overthrow the will of the people and is planning to block access to the ballot after manipulating voting districts. Tribalism is a powerful force but so is love of the truth and freedom. America is at a crossroads where one road leads to a land of lying politicians whose only goal is power as they increase their control of reality through media propaganda outlets. When you see or hear stories about how terrible Biden and the Democrats are think of Trump and the weak twisted liars running the Republican Party.
The United States and it’s mass media outlets have a problem in identifying and reinforcing the truth. We have many manifestations of this problem: 1) Many Americans including highly educated and famous people do not believe in science and health professionals, or their vaccines despite over 700,000 deaths from COVID. 2) Many Americans believe more in a lying conman than the American voting system or the FBI; despite mountains of evidence of long term corruption by Trump. 3) Republican political strategy is increasingly reliant on comfortable lies like Critical Race Theory being taught in K-12 schools, or January 6th insurrectionists were just tourists. If Americans do not start to wake up to the truth and act on it we risk that Wiley Coyote moment realizing we are over a cliff about to fall.
Don Winslow’s video on Twitter titled “#Joe Manchin Senator for Sale” makes a lot of claims (with evidence) that Joe Manchin is playing the people of West Virginia and America for suckers. Senators who do not represent their constituents, or care about them, are nothing new. Many people claim the same is true with Senator Sinema in Arizona. The telling issue about Don Winslow’s video is the string of devastating facts laid out to support his claim. Is Joe Manchin a millionaire off of a family coal business that is paid by large carbon companies? Is the money from carbon companies the reason he opposes a clean energy grid that would save lives and strengthen America? The litany of charges backed by data against Joe Manchin is frightening because it shows the level of corrupt influence in our government. Trump’s cabinet was notorious for corrupt behavior. Is there justice for all in our country? Why do people at the upper levels of Congress (or Trump and his cabinet) behave in corrupt fashion and rarely held accountable? Research the issues and express your citizenship rights; demand the justice system hold everyone to the same standards of accountability.
The American Republic is under an assault that began with the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Numerous books detail the malevolence of the Trump administration with the assistance of Republicans in congress. Too many people who should recognize the threat to democracy seem to be focused on tribe rather than country or decency. If we go over the cliff of the Trump Republican’s reconstruction of the country by allowing their control of government; the carnage will likely lead existential levels of destruction. Corrupt authoritarian government will focus on lies and cruelty to secure domination inside the country while likely starting a war to maximize confusion. The dominoes will fall in both expected and unexpected ways that will diminish hope and the odds for a return to democracy. Research and act to save our republic and defend the hope for a better future.
It is Labor Day 2021 and many Americans are concerned about a NY Times front-page article attacking Joe Biden. We call it journalism because they are supposed to keep a record of what is taking place, but for what; are they journalists or scribes? You rarely see “journalist” hold people accountable for the truth, so do they look at their journals after the fact, or just write and agree with what they are told? Many Americans noticed when Trump lied regularly and “journalists” moved on to the next question with a lie for an answer. The media was cowardly with Trump, and now they demonstrate anger as they question the Biden Administration about issues that have little impact on average Americans. We need good journalists who pursue and defend the truth, while pushing back on lies. We, as citizens, have to demand journalism be held to a high standard and not just defend their tribe or class. Do high-paid journalists attack Biden because he wants to raise taxes on those making more than 400k (to pay for the Build Back Better plan)? Do they overlook Trump’s madness and massive criminality because he offered tax cuts with renewed systemic white supremacy? Why don’t we know the names and faces of the persons who wrote and introduced the Texas bounty on women pursuing reproductive rights? Research and demand journalism that informs and respects American citizens.
The United States government has a series of incredibly important issues to deal with right now that I will prioritize. 1) Planning and fighting the COVID pandemic worldwide. 2) Legislating the right of citizens to vote in free and fair elections. 3) Planning and funding infrastructure for the climate crisis. 4) Making sure no one is above the law. 5) Expanding human and healthcare infrastructure so that no American is left hopeless. The list goes on but the Afghanistan issue is front and center because the previous President betrayed the Afghan government supported by the United States, and negotiated with the Taliban behind their backs. Then the current president was surprised when the Afghan government we supported refused to fight, but made their own deals with the Taliban. We will continue to suffer humiliation as a country until we confront the evil perpetrated by the 45th president and his sycophants completely, and in full. Research and act to protect our republic and a decent future for the people of this country.