Did the title perplex you? I have a feeling you may be in the majority if it did. For the many who did not know it, the holiday will be revealed at the end. The substance of today’s article will be a bunch of rambling comments. (This is becoming a necessary format for me.) Let’s explore.
My first holiday reference has nothing to do with the title but I thought I’d continue with that theme. John Bolton’s book was scheduled to come out on St. Patrick’s Day which was March 17th; nearly a month ago. The Trump administration has thus far successfully censored it. This is troubling! I have no intention of reading, buying or promoting the book when it comes out. When the government controls the press we have ceased to be a democracy and a representative democracy cannot function in the dark.
A while back Paul Krugman labeled the Trump economy “deficitpolooza”. That was fitting and before the $2.2 trillion economic bailout package that they are (not very competently) trying to administer. Now there are plans underway for another economic bailout package that may well total another $2 trillion. Dr. Krugman’s term may well be understatement, not hyperbole.
Last week the United States took the lead in the number of coronavirus cases and deaths. Sometime this week the total number of reported coronavirus cases in America will exceed the total population of Wyoming. Right wing mythology aside, we are far from the peak let alone the end.
Trump appears to be leaning toward a premature lifting of social distancing suggestions. (The self-described – but not accurate – Trump administration’s “Bold” actions do not include social distancing edicts.) There is proof that social distancing has thus far yielded better outcomes. That politically high risk leadership has come from governors and local elected officials not the White House. Perhaps Trump can come out with a new line of hats: MASA as in Make America Sick Again.
I hope I am incorrect, but I’m sticking with my prediction that America will experience a second wave of the coronavirus this fall. It will interfere with the November election which is an outcome that favors Trump and Republicans in general. When it happens Trump will claim he did everything possible and besides, “Who knew” a second wave was possible. The answer is anyone who has studied history and/or reads this column.
There are 350,000 jobs in solar and wind power; 50,000 and declining in coal. With that frame of reference consider the following: the Republicans are fighting to include a break in the economic bailout packages for big coal that would lessen the contribution the industry makes to the Black Lung benefits fund. I won’t even get into the moral arguments because the GOP doesn’t have any. Why would we subsidize a dying industry on the back of the American taxpayers and the damaged lungs of retired miners?
For those of us who are hoping John Roberts will be the fifth vote of reason on the Supreme Court some evidence to the contrary was presented last week. In a 5-4 decision the Court upheld the ruling in favor of the Republican Wisconsin Legislature’s overruling of Democratic Governor Tony Evers who declared that in person voting couldn’t take place in Wisconsin last Tuesday due to social distancing and extended the mailing voting period to accommodate the change. We have a chance on some social issues, (the Republicans just use the religious right), but on voter suppression self-preservation takes over. They know they can’t win the battle of ideas so they resort to rigging elections via gerrymandering and voter suppression.
If anybody out there still doubts that right wing terrorism is a problem in America I offer the fact that recently Dr. Anthony Fauci’s security had to be beefed up (at the taxpayers’ expense). Fauci is a 79 year-old scientist who stands about 5’6” tall and committed the “sin” of telling the truth which often contradicts what comes out of Trump’s mouth. This “danger to society” is just trying to minimize the deaths in America from the coronavirus pandemic.
Today is Dyngus Day and I’d like to wish all my readers in Poland along with all those of Polish ethnicity wherever they are a Happy Dyngus Day. Social distancing will make it much different; but without the social distancing it will be the last Dyngus Day on earth for many.
The good news is that it is going to get better if we do the right things. The bad news is that it is going to get worse first.
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