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Wednesday, June 29, 2022

When Good Men Do Nothing


 

The lack of faith is not doubt. It is certainty.
Abigail van Buren


Have faith. 

That's what you tell me. 

Have faith. Just believe. 

Have a little faith, Jim. The DOJ is moving quietly. Building a case. Have faith in Merrick Garland.  These things take time. 

Like a dying Shepherd Book saying to Malcolm Reynolds, "I don't care what you believe in, just believe."

Just believe. 

Have faith. 

Why? 




Faith? 

That's long wait for a train that don't come, so long as I'm already quoting Firefly

Why the hell should I have any faith that Donald Trump will finally get what's coming to him?

Why should I have any faith in the Department of Justice? 

Why?

Go on, tell me. It's been a grim couple of weeks, I could use the laugh.

Have faith.

You've got to be kidding me. 

Trump was impeached twice

Nothing. Not a mark on him. Hell the MAGA crowd loves him even more for being impeached, for owning the libs. Ha ha! Still here, Chumps!

The Mueller investigation was going to bring him down. 

Have faith, you said, as it dragged on and on. You'll see. Mueller will get him. And ... again, nothing. In fact it was Mueller and the FBI who ended up laughingstocks. Oh, Mueller might have been right, but without an indictment? Trump and Republicans could spin it however they wanted, and oh boy did they. Russia! Russia Russia! Doesn't matter what the Mueller Report actually said, the only thing that matters is Trump didn't go to jail. Once again, he owned the libs ha ha, Losers! 

Okay. But what about New York? Any day now, they're gonna bring charges. 

Indictments. Any day now. 

You'll see. Real soon. Yeah.

Except that day just never seems to come. Trump delays and appeals and denies and it just goes on and on and on until one day it just quietly goes away. He paid somebody off or they dropped the charges like they always do. What's that? Oh, yeah, that New York thing. Yeah, whatever happened to that? Nothing, that's what. 

Georgia, though, right? 

Oh, we got him now! Yeah. Georgia. Election fraud. He's going down! Republicans, the Republican state government, yeah, they're gonna indict Trump any minute now! Just watch! 

Any minute now. Yeah.

Any minute. 

You'll see. 

Trump has been the center of a criminal enterprise for decades. Fraud. Confidence games. Bad real estate deals. Mob connections. Decades? Hell, his whole life. His father. His grandfather. His goddamn kids. Crime is the family business. 

And...

Nothing. 

They're all still walking around (or riding around in a golf cart as the case may be). 

Hell, Trump's talking about running for president AGAIN. 

Nothing ever sticks to this guy, not even hairspray. 


Why the hell should I have any faith that he's going down this time? 


What in Trump's history would give me any faith at all? 

What in America's history? 

Shit, we pardoned fucking Nixon, right? He got away with it. People look back on him now with fondness. Oh, Tricky Dick, he was a crook, but he loved America! 

Ronald Reagan sold weapons to our enemies -- literally sold weapons to our enemies -- and we did nothing. Less than nothing. We let him get away with treason right out in broad daylight. Oh, that's just Ronny. You know how he is. And the Lieutenant Colonel who led that caper? Yeah, he got a pardon and he's a fucking hero nowadays with his own radio show. 

If Trump was a business woman who happened to trade some stocks, he'd have spent a couple months in jail next to Martha Stewart. 

If Trump was a Jew who scammed a bunch of people out of their money, he'd be in prison next to Bernie Madoff. 

If Trump was a poor black man who tried to pass a fake $20, some overfed cop would have knelt on his neck until he was dead right next to George Floyd. 

But rich powerful white men like Trump?

Nothing.

They get away with it. 

And they get away with it every day in this country. 

Trump's been getting away with it for his whole damn life. 

And...

Oh, what's that? 

What? This time it's different, you say? 


LOL


Yeah. 

Sure it is. 

People like Trump have been stirring up violence since long before this country was founded. 

Shit, take a look at the Supreme Court lately, there's some violence for you. 

How about the rich sons of bitches who implode the economy every other decade? Last time you lost your jobs, your homes, your savings, your retirements, your kids' college funds, your businesses, the whole damn world economy flatlined because some unbelievably rich assholes tried to make themselves even richer. 

And not one of them, not a single one of them was ever once held to account. 

They got away with it. 

Hell, they didn't even lose any money. They got richer. They became even more powerful. 

Don't believe me? Look up John Thain. 

Right now, rich white men like the Kochs are pulling the strings, squeezing you at the pump, at the grocery store, getting fatter and richer and even more untouchable at your expense, while their gullible foot soldiers blame everybody but those actually responsible. 

The MAGAs who stormed the Capitol? They're going to jail. 

But their leaders? The rich powerful white men who egged them on with fistpumps on national TV? 

Nothing. Not one of the people actually responsible have been indicted, let alone send to jail. 

And that's important. 

Because in a very few short months, Americans are going to the polls to vote in the midterms. 

And who they blame for their (alleged) misery is going to determine what happens next. 

Now, your vote is already fighting an uphill battle. 

As any number of you have repeatedly pointed out to me over the years, the game is rigged. 

And you're right, it is. 

It's all sorts of rigged and always has been. 

But, now Republicans have turned disenfranchisement into a goddamn sport. From new laws making it impossible for poor minorities to vote, to armed voter intimidation at the polling stations, to impossible Voter ID laws, to gerrymandering, to rigged election maps, to gaming the Electoral College, to just out and out passing laws that give Republican state legislatures the power to simply ignore voters and declare whoever they want as the winner. 

And now they've got a Supreme Court that will gleefully let them get away with it. 

But that doesn't mean your vote doesn't count. 

It means your vote counts more than ever.

Every single vote against these fascist assholes is vitally important. 

Every single one. 

There's no margin at all. None. Zero. 

Every single vote counts. Some of these races are going to be decided by a hundred votes, by less than ten, by one vote. 

One vote.

Your vote.

But...

It's the midterms. 

Half the country barely shows up for the General Election, the midterms are a disaster. 

Especially when the (Left, liberals, progressives, undecideds, whatever term you want to use for whatever part of the population who allegedly still opposes this galloping fascism) barely shows up on a good day. 

Yeah, yeah, I hear you screaming in rage at me. WE SHOWED UP!

Sure, you show up. 

But the truth is that a hell of a lot of the "resistance" doesn't. 

They just don't. 

You can get mad at me for saying that all you like, but if even half the eligible voters show up for a midterm, we call that a good turnout. I know it. You know it too. So there's no point in pretending otherwise. 

And yes, maybe -- just maybe -- this time, given recent SCOTUS decisions enough people will be pissed off to turn out in record numbers. Maybe. Let's hope so.

But I wouldn't count on it if history is any guide. 

Look, you can trace the rise of Trump and the howling mindless mob of MAGAism right back to the midterm elections of 2010 when the country was mad at Obama for not fixing everything fast enough and not giving them a baby unicorn to boot, and so they handed Congress over to the fucking Tea Party out of spite. 

So, forgive me if I don't have much faith in the sustainability of your outrage. 

And again, you can get mad at me for saying it out loud, but there it is. Go look up the voter numbers for 2010, you'll see. I can go back and pull up the screen caps of the comments I read back then, but you don't need to take my word for it, we live in the Information Age, go look for yourselves. 

Trump is the direct (heh) intellectual descendent of the squawking mindless miserable ignorant racist misogynistic clanging violent fanatical hate that was the Tea Party. 

But more than that, where we are right now is the direct result of what happens when good people don't show up. What's that quote about triumph of evil and good men doing nothing? You know the one, even if you incorrectly attribute it to Edmund Burke or Ben Franklin. 

And why?

Why don't they show up? Why do good men stand by doing nothing and allow evil to triumph? 

You don't have to look very far. 

You don't have to guess. You don't have to take my word for it. You don't have to run a poll and hope for honest answers. Why don't they show up? They'll tell you. They are telling you. They've been telling you. 

Look, folks, I interact with something like half a million people every day and I'm neck deep in Americans telling me why they're not going to show up. 

They're not inspired. 

They're sick and tired of nothing ever changing, that things not only don't get better, they're getting worse. 

They're mad Joe Biden hasn't delivered them the pony they were promised, just like they were mad at Barrack Obama and Bill Clinton and John F. Kennedy -- and probably George Washington too. 

They're sick of shitty choices. 

They're sick of the people they had to vote for not making bold moves to save the Republic. 

And yes, I have mocked that attitude, those very words, right here, over and over and admonished Americans to grow up and do their pragmatic duty anyway.

But still, there it is. 

Most of all they're pissed that rich white men are never held to account. 

And you know what? I am too. 

You bet I am. 

Look, I hate to be this way, I do, but there are Mafia Dons in prison right now looking at Trump like, goddamn, when are they gonna indict this guy? 

I mean, Tricky Dick Nixon was a piker compared to Trump. 

At this point I don't really care if they arrest Trump for outstanding parking tickets. Something. Anything. 

Because if we hit the election without an indictment, then it's over. 

It's OVER.

This isn't about justice. 

This isn't about "The Law."

This is about politics

And politics are about appearance. About what the public believes. 

Politics are about being inspired. 


You're right. It's about faith


If we go into this election with America believing Trump and his cronies will again get away with it, if we don't have faith -- real faith -- that this time these goddamn crooks are going to prison, then the people who need to show up won't, and those who want to own the libs will

And you don't have to look any further than 2010 to see it coming. 

Yeah, Merrick Garland is the guy who put away Timothy McVeigh, I got it. So what? 

I hear the lawyers cautioning me to patience. Slow, steady, build a case, ironclad, so Trump can't wiggle out. I got it. I hear you. 

I hear you. 

But you're not hearing me. 

Slow and steady won't win this race. 

And we've heard these promises before. 

There is literally no history you can point to in Trump's past to prove your case that this time, at long last, he'll finally get what's coming to him. None. 

The public has to believe that this time something will actually be done.

A firewalled, tightlipped DOJ might be good for Justice, but right now it's bad for Democracy

You can win the battle and lose the war.

That's what happened to Hillary Clinton. She won all the battles, but she lost the war. 

Clinton was educated, experienced, prepared. Trump was ... Sarah Palin with better hair and a spray tan. Proudly sexist. Loudly racist. A blustering, bombastic, bloviating ignoramus. 

Remember the debates? 

Clinton answered all the questions. Succinctly. Competently. With knowledge and experience. She had a real plan for everything. Trump never answered a single question. His responses showed his utter ignorance, his complete inability to address reality, to answer a single question in a straightforward manner. The guy was a fumbling idiot, utterly ill-prepared to be president of the Country Club let alone America. 

And yet, they called the debates for Trump. Because the crowd hated Clinton, she was too prepared Republicans said, too smug and confident like she thinks we owe her a vote said Democrats. And they loved how Trump put on a show.

You saw it. 

Republicans saw it. 

And they elected him anyway. Because they knew they'd get what they wanted -- and they did. 

Because politics isn't about what's right. 

It's about who wins the mob. 

That's what Mueller didn't understand. He was a lawyer. A G-Man. An FBI Agent. A professional. He thought he could just put the evidence on the table and America, Congress, the Justice Department, would do the right thing. 

Do I need remind you how that turned out?

Of course, they weren't going to do the right thing. Not when Republicans, Christian Conservatives, the hardcore Right, they finally got what they wanted. 

Then 2020, and yeah, we threw Trump out of office, but he owned us all anyway, didn't he? 

Republicans got what they wanted. Yes they did. They got rid of Roe v. Wade. Sure, we won the battle, won the election.

And lost the goddamn war. 

And now they're coming for more and they're probably going to get it. 

Roe was just the first fort to fall. Now they're coming for the rest of it, like Nazi tanks plowing through the forest around the Maginot Line. They're coming for everything you said you care about. Everything from same sex marriage to contraception to voting rights to gun control to the climate to education, all of it. They said so. 

And you can hear the roaring of their army approaching. 

If you don't show up this time, there's going to be no way to stop them. 

Every single vote matters. 

Every one. 

And if those who need to be inspired, who are disgusted by politics as usual, who already hate their choices, who are convinced that nothing ever changes and the only solution is to burn it all down, if those voters aren't given at least a reasonable hope that this time the old rich white man who did this to us will be held to account, then they aren't going to show up. 

They will not. 

They will hand the Republic over the horrible remnants of the Tea Party just to watch it burn. 

They said so. They've been saying so. And they have repeatedly demonstrated their willingness to carry though with not showing up. 

Quod Erat Demonstrandum. 

This isn't about indicting Trump. 

This is about what kind of country we want to live in. 

This is about the supreme court. It's about rights. It's about gun violence. It's about who can marry who. It's about who can vote. It's about autonomy over your own body. It's about keeping the goddamn church out of government. It's about the environment. It's about the economy. It's about decent jobs. It's about healthcare. It's about feeding the hungry. It's about what we can teach in schools. It's about history and who gets to write it. It's about who is a full citizen of this country and who is not. It's about all of that and so much more. 

Most of all, this is about the future we leave to our kids and our grandchildren. 

Have faith?

No. 

Faith is for invisible gods who live in the sky. Not government. 

Americans needs to know that the Department of Justice is going to bring these seditious sons of bitches to justice. All of them. Especially Donald J. Trump. 

We need to know it. 

We need proof, not faith. 

Folks, we won every battle in Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq. 

And still lost the wars. 

Well, maybe we didn't exactly lose those wars, but we sure as shit didn't win them either. 

And that, right there, is the metaphor. 

It's not enough to just not lose. 

It's not enough to just hold the line. 

You have to win. You have to win hard, decisively, overwhelmingly, in enough numbers to not only fix what these fascist bastards have already broken but to send them back into the sewer where they belong, to push the faces of these goddamn Nazis down into the muck and hold them there until they stop kicking. 

Is it fair? That people are like this? That voters are fickle? That politics isn't about truth or fact but rather putting on a show? 

Hell no it's not fair. 

But that's how it is. 

And if you want to win, then Merrick Garland has got to move. Now. 

You tell me to have faith. 

Well, then you have to give me something to have faith in. 

More than that, the American people shouldn't have to have faith.

America should know with certainty, or at least a high degree of confidence, that the government they elected will do the right thing. 

You've heard me say many times: If you want a better nation, you have to be a better citizen.

And that is true.

BUT, in America, citizens and government are inextricably tied together, one and the same, and therefore the converse is also true.

Thus: If you want better citizens, you have to be a better government. 

For Merrick Garland, that time is now. 


I do respect people's faith, but I don't respect their manipulation of that faith in order to create fear and control.
-- Javier Bardem


154 comments:

  1. Replies
    1. Well, we've now taken down the names; all we have to do now is "kick ass", right?

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    2. Is it possible that the DOJ is AFRAID to prosecute Trump? That they're worried about riots or worse from his voter base? I hate to think it, but it seems like it's a possibility.

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    3. Faith is is too often misplaced, and we've been burned too often when told to "have faith". Nope. Not today.

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    4. I think if they DON'T at least imprison him for life if not hang him there will be violence.

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    5. To “Unknown”, I wonder the same thing. Often.

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    6. Also to 'Unknown'; the requirement, the bare minimum, for convicting Trump or even other major figures of literally anything is finding twelve people who aren't fanatics of his.

      In a country currently in the throes of what happens to every human society when fascism becomes an option. So, where one third of the country (minimum) is willing to do as much harm to the rest as possible if any given strongman tells them to.

      Beyond riots or any other kind of threat, how do you begin to filter for that?

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    7. have faith that the Dems will continue to use Trump as a fund raising tool until they lose it all .....

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    8. Worried about what trumpf’s base will do if he’s indicted? Better to face that now while we have a Democrat as Commander in Chief.

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    9. I have a different take.

      I exercised my legal right to a safe and effective medical procedure in 1979 before my last year of college at UVA.

      Went on to law school and a marriage of 36 years so far and three fantastic gown children.

      I would have been so fucked, and so would the putative dad but not quite so fucked as I.

      I’ll vote. Of course I will.

      But I’ll do so knowing it is pointless because am now less of a citizen than I was 10 days ago. Rich old white men rule this earth and the fact that I find that offensive and grotesque doesn’t change reality.

      There is some female energy out there surrounding the midterms. But there is also a malaise in women that we lost Roe and that was our way out of the inevitability of the female destiny.

      What can anybody do to get women back on an admittedly uneven playing field?

      The answer is NOT ONE GODDAMN THING.

      Elect all the democrats on the slate in every state, codify Roe and guess what? SCOTUS will declare it unconstitutional because if you missed that detail, SCOTUS just gave that power to the states.

      I’ll vote. Of course I will. I’ll do so though with a heavy heart understanding that in my country I and my daughter and my granddaughter are less worthy of autonomy than my husband, my sons CD and my grandson.

      It is not possible to overstate the impact this will have on young girls and women, not only in their reproductive rights, but also how they view themselves in relation. To their families, their communities and authority.

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  2. At this point, I think the only way Trump will pay for his crimes is if some poor frustrated whackadoodle gets close enough to shoot him. Note I do NOT advocate such a thing, assuming his lifetime entitlement of Secret Service protectors would somehow foul up enough to allow it to happen. It’s just that he’s a true Teflon Don.

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    1. And since he has no moral ethics or sense of shame, trump doesn't care about anything except himself.

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    2. Sadly, he would then become a martyr. Not sure how to win this one.

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    3. Hinckley did just get released, so...

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    4. What is it that the Rs / Gunuts keep telling us we need all those guns for? Something about government out of control blah blah? Sooner or later, someone with nothing left to lose is gonna take them at their word.

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    5. My thought exactly. I’m surprised someone hasn’t already…

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    6. We can't allow any of these horrible people to become martyrs. Best scenario is dies embarrassingly in prison akin to Elvis.

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    7. Tina- Former President’s are now longer given Secret Service for a lifetime! They are given a stipend for Secret Service detail, office supplies, staff for 10 years. Those past presidents before Bush gets this for life, each subsequent allotted 10 years only ( which for Dump & family is a major expenditure which should never have happened)!

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  3. Thank you. We needed this.

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  4. Jim Wright. Saying what needed to be said, needs to be repeated at the top of the hour every hour untill the need is satisfied. Proud patron.

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  5. (Psst. I think you meant “decent jobs”, not “decedent jobs”. Also, “inextricably” tied together.)

    Great post as always. I always wait for them and read them all the way through. I hope people listen and vote.

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    1. I really hate when people do that "psst" thing. Just say it.

      Thanks for pointing out the errors. They're fixed now. // Jim

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    2. Psst, Jim, you did good with this editorial. Bravo.

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    3. I hope and I am trying to hold onto that hope that the DOJ will indict Trump and others. I have voted every election all my life though my parents did not, I raised all five of my children to vote and they do. It is the very least we can do.

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  6. I was so incredibly proud of my daughter last night. She went into Columbus and marched for her rights. She's 21, and took a sign reading "If I wanted the government in my body, I'd **** a Senator. Not the language I usually want to hear from my baby girl, but, now's not the time to be a lady. (I blanked out the word, so as not to be offensive here, but I'm sure you all get the gist.) I couldn't go with her, since I have her younger brothers and my husband was working late, so I was terrified the entire time she was gone, because these things can get violent. But, she said that there was a lot of chanting, a lot of marching, a lot of people taking pictures, and it wasn't until the end that they met any counter-protesters, but they didn't seem organized.

    I never wanted to live in a time where my daughter would have to march and protest to keep her rights. But I feel like maybe I raised her right, and raised her strong enough to do it. It scares me, for her. I want Garland to step up. I want him to do his job, or be replaced with someone who will. Because if they hold TRUMP accountable, then maybe we can look at Justice Thomas and his wife, and their part in this, and look at the impeachment process for him.

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    1. The word is "fuck," yeah? We can't effect change whilst simultaneously clutching our pearls about verbiage. It's just a word.

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    2. Besides, American English really only has one genuine curse word remaining, the one decent, polite people have to refer to by its starting initial.

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    3. You could have brought her brothers. My son was 2 1/2 months old at his first Pride, 4 months at his first pro-choice rally.

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    4. A couple things, I don't tend to curse where it's not going to do any good. I believe in manners, and I tend to agree with the sentiments expressed around here. As for taking her brothers, one was at work and doesn't drive, and one has severe social anxiety, and I'm not forcing him into a huge crowd and having to help him through a panic attack. There's also the whole "people like to shoot people who don't agree with them" thing. My kids are their own people, I'm not going to drag any of them along to anything. They get to support things they wish, how they wish.

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    5. You raised a strong woman!

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    6. Joanna, you've done good and you're doing good. You've raised your daughter well -- more power to her! And you did the right thing for your son with the social anxiety. Both our children have both mental and physical health issues (since childhood); our adult daughter has what I call "pathological" general anxiety (along with diagnosed OCD and probably depression, undiagnosed). So my wife and I know how full your hands must be. Plus, as you point out, there's the too possible danger at such events.

      Regarding the cursing: I (in my mid-60s) was raised not to curse, so I don't. I too use asterisks in writing; I save the out-loud cursing for special occasions, like the time I accidentally closed a locked car door on my thumb and had to fumble around in my back pocket with my other hand to find the car keys so I could open the door! I don't believe change requires us to curse like Dick Cheney or Lindsey Graham, fortunately, because I don't want to model myself after any of them or their ilk. (Listening to Jim, on the other, would be quite a treat I imagine, and I would gladly get in line to buy any recording he offered to the public!)

      Take care.

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  7. You are spot on, as usual. We have run out of time waiting for someone to fix this.
    No one is coming to save us.
    We have to save ourselves.
    We have the power and it's called voting.
    I do not believe in God, but have always remembered the final line in JFK's inaugural address.
    “With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God's work must truly be our own.”

    I do not believe in God, but I used to believe in my fellow man.
    The clock is ticking.

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  8. Try'na be patient. But if you (Garland) are waiting for all the crime to abate long enough to build a case on it all, you're never going to deliver. It never pauses with that guys. More each day. Do it now. With what you have. Now.

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    1. It concerns me a little more very week that Garland was Moscow Mitch's suggestion as to what the Rs would accept as a Supreme Court justice.

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    2. It drives me up a wall to hear the patient establishment types make comments seeming to imply that the investigation of ALL Trump's crimes must be completed before any indictment can happen. That would take an eternity-- and he can COMMIT crimes far faster than the magisterial, complacent forces of Justice can possibly find out about them and document them to an adequate standard. He needs to be indicted and jailed NOW-- yesterday would have been better. His crimes will end with his death, and the documenting of them will taken centuries.... IF he doesn't manage to scramble back into enough power to burn all the investigators on a pile of documents, making a sacrificial pyre of the very notion of the truth.

      NEVER has the religious right's indoctrination of their children to place Faith (belief without evidence backed up by fear of power) above reason. They are primed to obey not only with their actions but with their minds; the central symbol of their fervid loyalty means whatever the Leader says it does, because they have neither the will nor the capacity to read the Bible or Constitution and point out that neither SAYS what their grifter leaders claim.... and in fact, both SAY things according to which their grifting leaders are bad men they should not follow, but rather abjure and prevent others from following.

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  9. I wish I could argue with you on anything you said above.

    Unfortunately, I've been saying the same things myself for 20+ years.

    I doubt that, with Thomas on the bench, that they'll come after my marriage (the only one of these progressive "precedents" that affects me personally), but damnitall, 25 years or so ago, I thought that our society was making some progress... slow, but sure. I thought that we were going to hand... I dunno, SOMETHING to my child's generation that was worth being proud of.

    After 2010? I've been fucking depressed virtually continuously.

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  10. I'm a retired attorney. I know how hard it is to build a case against a very powerful person. I can't say that I have "faith" that it will succeed. Frankly, the citizens of America allowed this to happen. We saw the radicalization of the Republican Party and refused to deal with it. In my case, I ran (screaming) but had no idea how to overcome the intrusion of the KKK, the John Birch Society, and more into the party. I made a lot of noise as one individual, but my reach (like most of us) is incredibly small and I couldn't even drag my relatives out of the cult.

    Do I believe Trump will be charged? Maybe. Convicted? I have no idea. Do I believe things will continue to be bad. Yes. Because from my perspective as a 70-something person, we continue stay on a rocket-sled to tyranny. Democrats are too busy fighting with each other to be effective.

    I can't even convince the local young people to register to vote. Only the ones from the far right are registering and voting. The rest tell me that their vote doesn't count.

    Freedom was nice while we had it.

    Keep speaking out. You have a bully pulpit. I wish we'd had you 50 years ago.

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    1. You are spot on. I, too, demonstrated and marched back in the 1960's for the right to vote and for civil rights and for the ERA and for bodily autonomy for myself and all females. My daughter thanked me; my grand-daughters are shocked at the current state of affairs (and one already moved to Canada rather than put up with Americans any longer). I've written letters, emails and telegrams; I've phoned, walked precincts, stuffed envelopes and volunteered at candidate's offices; I've put up signs and participated in phone banks; and I've voted in every election since 1955. Frankly, I'm tired. My granddaughters and great-granddaughters will be forced to pick up and carry the torch. I can't do it any longer.

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    2. The young who say they don't vote because their vote doesn't count don't realize that the reason their vote doesn't count is that they and their cohort don't cast it. If they voted and worked to bring their cohort to the polls ....

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  11. Thanks for this...every word...

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  12. Thank you Jim, you say what most of us are thinking but cannot articulate as well as you.

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  13. Thanks Jim. So true, every word. Faith and $3.50 will get you a coffee. A man that I argued the stupidity of faith with for years, became a pastor... and 5 days ago died at 52 of cancer. Fuck faith.
    Show me an indictment. Biden's numbers are bad because many who voted FOR Biden and are, as you explained so well, disillusioned with the results. Yes, it wasn't Biden but Mancinema that destroyed their dreams... but they don't really care any more.
    Anyway, thanks again for a beautiful dose of reality... that we vote and win... or don't and no longer have a country. Cheers

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    1. What is Mancinema? A typo?

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    2. Manchin & Sinema

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    3. Joe Manchin and Kirsten Sinema

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    4. Joe Manchin and Kristen Sinema, Mancinema, the two senators who are Republicans under cover(barely) pretending to be Democrats and roadblocking the Democratic party's entire agenda.

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    5. Manchin and Sinema

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    6. Senators Manchin and Sinema

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    7. A portmanteau of Manchin and Sinema, as in everyone's least favorite DINO Senators.

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  14. Once again, you are spot on. I know that I can only do my very best to convince people to register and vote and after reading this I know how important that is.

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  15. J. Harley PummillJune 29, 2022 at 12:24 PM

    How many times have I had the conversations/discussion/debates outlined in this piece? Is Ga-jillion a real number? Especially in regard to Trump going to jail. “No he’s not”, I tell them, “rich white guys don’t go to jail.” The only way rich white guys go to jail is if they’re charged with a crime against another rich white guy. (Bernie Madoff). They may, after dragging their case on and on for years, MAY have to pay a fine. Like the Sacklers. “What?? You made a hundred billion selling a product you knew to be addictive, killing thousands in the process?? Give us eight billion and we’ll call it even.” There are two justice systems in the US… the that we deal with that has us tazed, thrown to the ground and arrested if we don’t follow an LE officer’s instructions to the letter, and the one that allows rich motherfuckers like DJT to throw money and lawyers at it til the clock runs out.

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  16. As always, a thoughtful breakdown for the folks in the back. Vote, volunteer to drive people to the polls, help your local polling centers. This is your future and all your family down seven generations. Fight for your country and all our future’s or it’s truly going down in flames.

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  17. I wish I could email this right to Garland and anyone else who may actually have the pet to DO something!

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    1. I've been sending passionate emails to the DoJ weekly and am thinking about GOING to DC to ask whether anyone received them... and reiterate that there's a timer ticking down, every moment of every day, approaching the point of no return, after which the fall of this republic will not be averted by their being "right". Process is sacred, but outcomes matter more; the point of liberal faith in process is founded on the fact that the right processes result in best outcomes. This corruption of American government by power and money-- and the arrogance of our ruling class and the stupidity of our religion-besotted populace-- have brought us to the precipice of a violent maelstrom that will make both twentieth century world wars look like minor schoolyard scuffles. Hitler was a better man than Trump, which is not to say anything good about him-- his beliefs were sick and wrong-- but Trump believes much the same things, without the veneer of mistaken social-darwinist tribal "morality", and solely as the backdrop to his personal selfishness so extreme it would have landed a poorer man in a mental institution long ago.
      (For God's sake, he bullied his elementary school teachers and threatened them with his Daddy's money and influence!)

      The German military was strong, but had nothing like America's military might, either in comparison to other nations or in absolute terms. Every moment Trump was in a position of authority over it felt like a precipice, because he is entirely capable of destroying the world and ending the species if it offers him the chance of being king of the ruins... or even just the chance to avoid the humiliation of loss and apocalypse of accountability. Given that nothing is real to him except people's image of him, he wouldn't even care about destroying the world, as long as that mean he wouldn't have to live with people knowing him for what he is instead of the cultivated PR cartoon of Rich Horndog Bossman that is his real life's work. If you look into the literature on narcissism and how narcissists behave, and realize the WORLD is his scapegoat, you'll realize he must be kept out of power at all costs.

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  18. Not voting has consequences. Now, where have I heard that before... Well written Jim.

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  19. You had me at Firefly

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  20. Jim, I agree with everything you said and I am angry with my fellow citizens who haven’t shown up in the past. It is absolutely vital to our future that we hold the scoundrels in the Republican Party accountable for their lies and misdeeds. But we must also hold their propaganda pushers, such as Levin and Hannity to the same standard for their lies, distortions, and misdeeds.

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  21. You're absolutely spot on! One day, years from now, as historians sift through the ashes of what once was the Good Ole US of A, someone will see this page and say: "This guy Jim saw it coming, why didn't anyone listen to him?" And the answer will come: "Well, a few people clearly did, but not nearly enough of them!"

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  22. Thanks, Jim, once again.

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  23. The left will never turn out to vote. Even if we put Trump in jail they'll never turn out. They're convinced both sides are the same and don't let anyone show any evidence otherwise. Their privilege is monumental, and it's never enough. Instead we have to rely on the fickle middle who actually do vote but only care about shit like gas prices rather than what Trump did.

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    1. Brandon GuilloryJune 29, 2022 at 2:18 PM

      The Left will turn out when The Democratic Party does what Jim Wright is asking Merrick Garland to do: flex the power that they were given to enact the change that their lip service spoke of that got them the votes in the first place.

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  24. true thoughts and words and We The People will fail us again.

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  25. Unfortunately, we the "choir" to whom you're speaking know you're absolutely right, but not enough of us will read your inspired words. At age 77, losing "faith" in courts doing the right thing has been one of the worst parts of the last 7 years along with the absolute unbelievable surprise of realizing the true feelings of so many of my fellow Americans. Who knew? I sure didn't.

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    1. Same, and how disheartening.

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  26. As always brilliant. I was ready to go vote then I remembered I am danish. Looking at the US from 5000 miles away I believe your next election is going to be the beginning or the end of whatever measure you have of democracy. Choose wisely. Why do I care? Because the US is one of 4 competing forces in the world. US, China, Russia and the EU. If you fail to live up to your role in the world we will all be poorer. All 4.

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    1. There are demographic forces in play that will diminish Russia and China as world powers, so if the United States throws away its leadership, you in the EU will pretty much have it all.....at least until climate change that the US stopped caring about makes most of the current civilized world either underwater or too hot for human civilization.....

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  27. I sat in my bedroom last night with the gun safe door open and looked at my 30-06 and the boxes of hunting ammo. And I thought. And thought. Soon, maybe. But not today. It isn't time yet. But soon. The other side of my brain said 'When will it be time?' You'll know, I said. The stench of a fascist theocratic state will come wafting down the street followed in close order by jack-booted thugs looking for anything that doesn't follow their interpretation of The Holy Bible. When they start pulling women from their homes and forcing them to wear long dresses and covering their faces. That's when it will be time.

    And I closed the safe door and locked it. Personally, I think once the outcome of the November vote is published, the countdown timer to doomsday will start ticking.

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  28. I need a reprieve from my anger, gonna grab my bull horn and head outside to read this to all the oblivious dog walkers on my street. Keep at it, sir.

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  29. Wow, this is so good.

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  30. I'm the child of an immigrant who came to the U.S. as an adult in search of a better life. He's gone now, and I shudder to consider what he'd think of this country that he was so proud to call home.

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  31. You're right there, but you diminish even your own rage by references to not getting "the ponies they were promised". Biden has come so woefully short of inspiring Americans when it comes to increased police budgets, military budgets, codifying Roe, and the list goes on. Nobody wants a pony. We want exactly what most of your point is - some indication that the little guy matters or that the rules are at least somewhat the same. I read every word, and I appreciate you using your voice to more loudly say what many of us are thinking. Thank you.

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    1. Yah. Just fuckin' vote, man.

      You're being offered the choice between week-old, dry chicken breast smothered in canned yellow gravy on one hand, and a plate full of broken glass garnished with hog shit. "But it's all the same."

      No, it fuckin' ain't.

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  32. Faith? Yup, I'm fresh out of it! Spot on, Chief. And not a pretty picture!

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  33. Learn how to count because for all their supposed faults the one thing
    Pelosi and Mitch have in common is they know how to count.
    The mission and goal is simple. Vote Democrat and keep voting Democrat. 62 Senators is the simple goal. I said simple, not easy. Once we have 60+ Senators then we can demand they do certain things, like impeach Thomas, Kavanaugh, Gorsuch and Barret for lying under oath, or eating a ham sandwich on Sunday I'm not fussy but I understand wielding power. 62 Democratic Senators and then we can start holding them to account. Until that happens The Democratic Party really is helpless because that is how the rules are written.

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    1. Brandon GuilloryJune 29, 2022 at 2:14 PM

      We've seen The Republican Party do more with less senators. There will always be at least one patsy for the Democratic Party to hide behind and rationalize keeping the nation in a conservative pattern before losing the power they never wielded in the first place to the regressives.

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    2. Obama had 60 senators for 8 months, a fillibuster proof majority, what did he do with it?

      People should still vote but we have a right to be aggrieved and critical when we give them the votes they asked for and they piss it away.

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    3. We need 62 Democrats “ died in the wool Democrats! Not Manchin that makes millions off of coal and keeps his con soon poverty by voting against everything that would help them! And Senima the creation that hasn’t any loyalty but to republicans that gave her my ney! Get these two gone with the wind and a new sheriff will be in town! Let’s do the ground work to also get our Dems elected, and then send these criminals to Guantanamo: trump!& family, Hawley, Gaetz, Cruz, deSantos, Abbott, Lee, Thomas both Clarence and Ginny, Kavanaugh, Barrett, Gorsuch, and goodness sake get rid of spine less SCotus Chief Justice Roberts what a toad! I bet Chief Justice Warren is turning over in his grave!
      One thing that pisses me off about Roe v Wade: a majority of white republicans males voted for abortion rights in ‘73 and now the self serving evangelical devils are tearing our country apart! One state at a time by religious zealots whatever happen to The Constitution separation of Church & State!

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  34. Right on, as usual. I wish I could vote in every state contest.

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  35. You are of course correct on all points. And yet Boebert won her primary yesterday. WTAF??! We need to grind the GOP and their candidates into the mud, we can’t afford to be nice. No more “when they go low, we go high” BS.

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  36. I’ve been having exactly this conversation on the group FB page. Sit on your ass and have faith? Hell no, that is for fools. But I think you need to have some faith in people including yourself to show up. Faith plus getting involved, by contributing to campaigns, volunteering, whatever you can do. Some of the comments gave me chills. If too many feel there’s no point, we’re toast, so faith + effort is what’s necessary. Just my opinion, which is worth every penny you paid for it.

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  37. My question has been "Where is James Earl Ray when you really need him?" LOL

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  38. God I hate how right you are some times.

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  39. Never think you're too pretty to die.

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  40. The only thing that will be right is as the gavel bangs at the end of the last televised Jan 6th hearing, the DOJ swarms in, arrests Trump, and we get to see him do the perp walk in an (ironically) orange jumpsuit. AND THAT HAPPENS BEFORE THE MID-TERMS. Then, get his friends too and CONVICT them all for crimes against the nation.

    But, I'm way too old and cynical, so I realize that is just a happy dream. So, I will continue to do what I have done since I was first eligible to vote. I'll come out to every single election and make my voice heard.

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  41. I will vote, I always vote. It may be the last time if "they" have their way. I am deeply discouraged though, in general. What's the point of progress if it can be stripped away in one bullshit presidency? How can anyone fix a 6-3 court in a timeframe that will work for the American young people? None of the issues affect me personally, but I am heartbroken for friends and co-workers and my daughter and the world they will live in.

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  42. Somehow, a remote lizard part of tRumps tiny diseased brain is cleverer than all the Democrats in Congress, Senate, Biden Administration, along with Harvard, Yale, and assorted high level Law Professors, and all the best minds at the DOJ, FBI, and Homeland Security. If all these smart people can't outsmart a rumpled, idiotic clod that throws his lunch at the wall having a hissy fit, we're done for. I sort of felt it was over when he won in 2016. We've been the sinking Titanic ever since.

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    1. Madame Medusah, brilliant response!

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    2. In 2021 Brooklyn Park MN the mayor was voted in by 2 votes.
      https://www.kare11.com/.../89-795c46d3-0661-489a-bf15...

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    3. But our heart will go on.....

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  43. "The public has to believe that this time sometime will actually be done."

    I think "sometime" should be "something". Maybe already mentioned above.
    You're so damn spot on as always.

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  44. I lived and worked in an Eastern European, former Soviet-bloc country in the 90's. I had a colleague who, for years, amazed me with stories about life under a Communist regime. Finally, one day, I expressed my sorrow that so much of his life had been wasted living in this system. He replied that he found it hard to regret much of what had happened - after all, he said, he made great friends, met his wife and raised his daughter during those years. The one thing, however, that stuck in his craw, was that all the important people in the country - from Party leaders, to the police, to the girls who staffed the shops (and held sway over who could buy what) - were the absolute dregs of society: stupid, venal, lazy, indifferent to others, etc. Now, over 25 years later, I'm in absolute shock to find myself living in a country that seems to be no different. You're spot on, Jim: unless we (citizens AND government) get off our collective asses, these same type of people are going to finish off destroying the United States.

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  45. I agree with you , Jim.
    Perhaps more of us will turn out for the midterm elections—if the overturning of a 49 year old law by a politicized and “activist” SCOTUS doesn’t incentivize us, then we are truly lost.
    But we need to do more than just vote in this one election, we have at least 40 years of voting and mobilization ahead of us. We should have taken to the streets and shut business and government down after the reversal of Roe v Wade was announced along with the declaration of what is ahead by Clarence Thomas. It’s all done in the open, we clutch our pearls and gasp but just move along. The GOP, now the party of Trump “because of all the good things he did prior to January 6”, knows that our response will be weak and our anger unsustained.
    We will require a lot of votes along with a lot of money and a LOT of activism if we are to turn this thing around. Strategic planning and implementation by the Democrats and Independents is also required and hopefully this is already underway.
    I am just a cynic hoping for proof otherwise.

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  46. Brandon GuilloryJune 29, 2022 at 2:10 PM

    "Look, you can trace the rise of Trump and the howling mindless mob of MAGAism right back to the midterm elections of 2010 when the country was mad at Obama for not fixing everything fast enough and not giving them a baby unicorn to boot, and so they handed Congress over to the fucking Tea Party out of spite."

    This right here is where you failed to connect how you feel right now about the system's inability or unwillingness to hold Trump accountable and the '08 Left-Wing Democratic voterbase's feelings about the Democratic Party's inability or unwillingness to enact the very policies that they were elected to implement in the first place. We know that they actually have the power to pull the trigger, as evidenced by The Republicans finding ways to do more with less.

    Hell, Obama ran on codifying Roe v. Wade in the first 100 days of office but then reneged, stating that (paraphrasing) it's not that high on his list of things to do.

    The very pragmatism that Dem voters closer to the right have preached to those closer to the left only works when those in power ACT. Your entire thesis is exactly the kind of thinking that those in 2010 came to the conclusion of. It wasn't "ponies and unicorns " that kept them home, it was the lack of accountability for inaction from the "Going too far left is scary" crowd.

    At what point do we actually listen to what the Democratic Party has been saying through their inaction and realize that they just aren't "good people"?

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  47. There might be a universe where Donald Trump sees justice for his crimes, but it isn't this one. Consider: Conviction requires that an entire jury vote for it. Where do you think we're going to find a jury like that? Not inside the United States, that's for sure. He's built himself a sufficiently large and powerful cult that he has become what he's always believed himself to be: Above the law. So sure: Go ahead and indict the man. Put him on trial. It might even be a nice show. But Trump will go free at the end of it. He knew what he was talking about when he predicted that he could get away with shooting somebody in Times Square.

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  48. I wrote this before the last presidential election in a thread on Reddit. My thoughts haven't changed and unfortunately this still applies and is happening in real time. I can see this all on the immediate horizon but so many just don't seem to care or understand. I feel like I'm screaming in the wind- "all sound and fury signifying nothing". Jim, I hope you with your reach can convince people how critical this coming midterm really is.


    So you won't vote for Biden because he's "ignoring the left". Think about this.

    The republicans have spent the last 4 years packing every court they can with ideologues who are unqualified for the sole reason to sway the court system to the right.

    If trump wins the presidency in 2020, they can pack the supreme court to a 7-2 majority.

    What does that mean in practical terms?

    It means liberal causes... let alone progressive causes, are officially dead.

    Our party, our beliefs will be extinct.

    They will never be enacted in your lifetime.

    Every law is going to be decided by the judicial appointees of the federalist society. Every vote & every act of congress will be challenged and end up in court to be decided by evangelical judges and an alt-right supreme court.

    No medicare for all. No student loan relief. No living wage.

    But that's just their cream on the shit shake.

    Forget about social security; forget the post office; forget medicare; forget medicaid; forget SNAP, forget abortion and planned parenthood, forget the environment and clean energy, forget privacy, forget the constitution, forget any federal help for the poor.

    Remember all those programs from FDR & Eisenhower that helped create a middle class and kept the elderly & infirm from being destitute?

    All of it will be gone in under 4 years.

    That's what you're voting for this time.

    This is it. Literally.

    After 2020, we will either be a democracy that values people or we will officially slide into being an evangelical, authoritarian dictatorship. They'll have the courts and the presidency and that's game over for any cause that's not backed by the religious right.

    They're a plague and we're about to be over run.

    So sure. Vote your protest conscience. Give the country to those bastards.

    But don't come crying to anyone when the only way to throw off their abuse becomes picking up a rifle. We are on the verge of a very ugly, very destructive period of time and everyone's vote counts almost like never before in history.

    We've a democracy if we can keep it.

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    1. You won't get the world you wish for by voting Democratic. Liberal and progressive causes rot on the vine when Democrats have control because Democrat elected officials aren't liberal or progressive, they're conservative centrists. Conservative in that they're hellbent on maintaining the status quo and not progressing in policy.

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    2. What part of the above do you not understand? Granted, the Democratic Party is not going to get us to a liberal paradise following the next election, but if the choice is between going back to what we had prior to January, 2017, and giving up on everything that made America a desirable place to live, which seems to be a reasonable description of the choices in the next election, then voting Democratic would seem to be the only logical choice.

      If you know of an alternative approach with a non-zero probability of staving of the total annihilation of American democracy, please enlighten us. Otherwise it seems reasonable to suppose that I'm replying to a Russian troll or something similar.

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  49. Agreed. I'm holding my breath as I wait for when the Dems(and Ms. Cheney) drop the bomb, and my best guess is it'll be right before the mid-terms happen. Kind of like what that bastard-in-personality Comey did to Clinton in 2016.
    Our country is on a fulcrum and I hate it.

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  50. Do you mean John Thain?

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  51. As we were headed to the polls to vote yesterday, I said to my husband “it a sad state of affairs that we no longer vote for someone we like as much as we vote against the crazy dangerous people trying to destroy our country.” It feels like trying to plug up the dam with our thumbs.

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  52. THIS! A thousand times THIS! Thank you for spelling it out so perfectly!

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  53. Vote Hard With A Vengeance.

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  54. Wow. I am both in tears of frustration, and filled with hope that maybe, just maybe, justice will truly be served. Thank you for your words.

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  55. I have voted in every election since I finally became old enough in 1982. I vote midterms, city and state, even goddamn school board because I do NOT want these corrupt, 'religious' bastards to destroy my country.

    Fuck the Trumpeteers and their enablers. Fuck them all.

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  56. Just one "yes, but" thought here - I'm sure Garland and the DOJ are very aware that the two failed impeachments just made TFG and the Magas much stronger. So if he doesn't have ducks in a row and brings charges that don't stick, he'll have made things that much worse. You're totally right about the need for action ahead of the midterms though so I sure hope the timing speeds up.

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  57. We don’t want “faith based “ voters. We need every thinking voter to show up, because the people who desperately want to have a state religion are going to vote and they need to be marginalized, hard.
    Hell, I hope to see angry women carrying rifles show up to protest March (daddy always said stay out of the way of an angry woman with a gun). Iwant teachers leading Muslim prayers, just to let the Christian Right know how badly they screwed up. I want everyone to vote.
    Trump has forgotten to shut up and let the lawyers talk for him. So let him get hoisted by his own petard. Okay Trumps rants against former staffers show how incredibly incompetent he is at picking staff., so what other incompetency does he have.
    I am going to vote against every single republican. And I have been a registered republican for 50 years.

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  58. Excellent and sobering essay. I get that people are uninspired, disappointed, but that just makes me want to get out and vote even more. I'm terrified. We are pretty much out of time.

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  59. Sorry Jim - I think you’re wrong. It took 2 years from Watergate to resignation. And it took Merrick Garland 2 years from the Oklahoma City bombing to convict McVeigh and Nichols. January 6 involves thousands of crimes and hundreds of criminals, many most of us do not even realize were involved. Take a few minutes and read this, originally from The NY Times but now out from behind that paywall: https://globalonlinemony.com/thomas-windom-is-helping-drive-the-investigation-into-trumps-push-to-keep-power/

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  60. I sincerely hope you're wrong, but I highly doubt it. At best, turnout will be higher because what's happened in the last year or so is unlike anything that had happened before, so maybe it's enough over the top to get people to the polls in numbers not seen in years.

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  61. Love every word of this. Some of these comments are about living in fear. We cannot continue to do that and remain the country we were and that were supposed to be.

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  62. No one is taking this far enough as to what will happen beyond the incels killing women. If xrump gets in, xutin is in our white house. His smug little face controlling our defense system. We will be Russia with all of its horribleness. What you're seeing in Ukraine will happen here. The part where they take over towns and issue new papers. Or ship you off. While women die delivering rapists babies. They just want the babies for all kinds of reasons. We are heading to some bad stuff yet we all are doing our day to day stuff because we still have to pay bills. Our democrats must have an exit plan because they would be doing something otherwise.

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  63. Typo of "Tump" instead of "Trump": "Clinton was educated, experienced, prepared. Tump was…"

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  64. I agree wholeheartedly. And I’d add : keep the damn government out of church. That door can swing both ways. We don’t want a door. We want a wall. This is one time I’ll agree with “build the wall.”

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  65. While we're asking Mr. Garland to do his job, can someone type up a memo rescinding that old DOJ memo that makes sitting presidents above the law? Just type it up, add it to his inbox for his signature. The barest amount of work for him to do something useful for us.

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  66. Lots to think about here. I try to have faith, or hope, or whatever, because that keeps me from the dark spiral into depression.

    And fuck yes, I vote.


    Typo patrol:

    * And if the those who need to be inspired

    * Americans needs to know that the Department of Justice

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  67. Brilliant courageous truth. Thank you ❤️

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  68. You echo everything I've lived thru since Nixon & before during the 60s. No one is ever held accountable. There is no balance in the system. R's win even if they don't hold any of the branches of Gvt. The keep the boot on the neck until no breath is left. That's how they win all the time. This country needs to go down hard because people let themselves become non-participants in the democratic process. They've been educated in hate, bigotry, xenophobia, & racism. They love being told what to think, who to hate by Fox News & RW Media. The rest of the media just puts out click bait headlines to please their oligarch owner-overlords. There is no more real journalism in this country. We are a failed state, a Banana Republic & rights being taken away right in front of everyone. In plain sight. This experiment is over.

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  69. Steven Gardner, Keyport, WAJune 29, 2022 at 9:44 PM

    It comes down to this. One party is actively trying to dismantle The Republic. The other is doing nothing to stop them. Yes, they are both complicit, but damn it. Even the "doing nothing" party is STILL BETTER THAN THE ALTERNATIVE.

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  70. Thank you sir. My plan is to post this every week until the midterms then decide about continuing until 2024. It’s that good and vital for as many to read as is possible.

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  71. Thank you, Jim. Spot on. I hope to heaven and hell they start filing charges soon, we can't take much more of this slow roll.

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  72. We in Georgia still have hope. Tmurp is bring investigated not by the Republican state government but by the Fulton County DA, a democrat in a heavily democratic county. Not to say the SOB won’t wriggle out, but it won’t be because the Republicans control the prosecution.

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  73. Nothing will happen until we march those "Tea Party Nazi's" to the ditches where the bodies lie from those they have murdered. Until they smell the stench of their deeds, they will not believe what they have allowed to have happened. America needs to be reminded of the poem, "First they came..."

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  74. Typo? Sorry to point one last one of these, but possibly you didn't mean to include a "the" in the phrase "And if the those who need to be inspired". (This comment counts as a "please delete after reading".)

    Brilliant essay, as always. Thanks for helping to keep me sane. (Both the commentary and the nature pictures.)

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  75. Well said, Jim. Thanks for continuing to repeat what's always been blindingly obvious. But all of us still need to hear it, and we need to hear it said so clearly and so well. Sadly I'm afraid the ones who most need to be inspired will never read it.

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  76. The 6 January hearings are perilous, and I'm not sure that is really understood. Sure, they've done a great job of demonstrating that something really, really awful happened that day. They've done convinced those who could be convinced. And now, if the Government does nothing to rectify this, then it has just told every American citizen that it doesn't care squat about something really, really awful that everyone knows is awful. Not the way to inspire faith or confidence.

    EMH

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  77. I totally agree! We've got to vote in numbers too big to leave any doubt. And we need to do that in every election from now on because we know the next trump is waiting and watching for the right time!

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  78. Damn right. Merrick Garland could have been a Supreme Court Justice, but Barack Obama didn't want to test the limits of the Senate's advisory rôle and call McConnell on his bullshit. As a result, the filibuster was removed for Supreme Court appointments, and we have 3 hardcore Originalists who want to bring us back to the days of powdered wigs. Mueller faded into the night after Barr buried the report. Now he's trying to look like a good guy because he found a line he wouldn't cross. It's your fault we're in this position! You had the authority to make indictments and send down prosecuting decisions! And now, the aforementioned Merrick Garland, for fear of indictments being seen as overly political, is not going to prosecute Trump and his goons? After everything we've seen? Maybe he's worried about the midterms. The Dems are odds on to lose both houses in November! What we need is a reckoning, a forced taking of sides. Do you stand with the crook, the huckster? Or with the ideal of America. Prosecuting Donald Trump, Roger Stone (again), Michael Flynn (again), Mark Meadows, Steve Bannon (again), and whoever else supported this cockamamie scheme to overthrow election results may be the only way to save not only the future sanctity of the electoral process, and the integrity of the Republic, but also, paradoxically, to save the Republican party from complete moral dereliction of it's duty to govern.

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  79. The next Presidential election will determine who is in charge for the 250 year anniversary of the USA. The question is will we be celebrating the birth or death of democracy?

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  80. This is absolutely spot on! If we don’t organize and get the masses to vote Democratic in order to save our Democracy we’re all going to end up in a country run by a facist pig!

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  81. I thought the rise of the Tea Party during the Obama years was obscene, but unsurprising given the levels of racism in the USA. Sadly what I see from across the Pond is the wittling away of American Democracy.

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  82. Well then pack it up, it's done. The issue is "we" are not really willing to confront anything.

    On Trump, nothing will happen. The only person who seemingly has fight in them is Cheney, someone who voted with Trump 93% of the time. The Democrats they want FITZMAS, errr MUELLER TIME, wait wait wait, Garland the Galliant! Ain't gonna happen. That's the issue. The people in charge don't want to do anything. So they won't. They will all hope someone else does it for them and then blame the voters later and kick the can down the road looking forward not back.

    And everyone who's not a blithering idiot knows this.

    The voters won't do shit either. Oh we will complain about White Supremacy, or patriarchy, or SCOTUS. But when Bill Barr admits he let Trump off the hook because of the need for his religion to be in charge we block that out. When all the National Conservatives write up a fascist declaration because of religion we ignore it. When Christian Battle Flags and crosses show up at Jan 6 which has prayer events during the assault and had the Jericho March prior we won't talk about it. We won't address the fact that we are in a religious sectarian civil war that got hot. Because confronting that means accepting that we all have to do something and it's going to get ugly.

    Ultimately we have a Christian sectarian group printing up a fascist declaration willing to over throw the government, collude with foreign powers, calling for a Franco/Orban and willing to break the law and kill for it. And everyone else sitting around not wanting to admit people will go to jail, there will be mass violence, and the fracture will get worse but if we aren't willing to deal with all that it's already over.

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  83. It was good to see a post from you today.. Love it. Love you. I needed it.

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  84. How to come back from the abyss when you're already over the edge, and so many are holding on to your legs dragging you down into it?
    The few that wanted this have been persistent on all the fronts to get us here, and that inertia can't be reversed in a single effort. It can be slowed, but as you've noted, too many have lost the will to continue the battle. The opposing force is small, but they are organized and have many resources. And they persist, regardless any setbacks.
    So many Americans were babies about masks, not willing to endure a little suffering to make things better. No one wants things in their backyard, no matter the good that may come to the society as a whole. The current population is nothing like the one that saw both the Great Depression and WWII, where sacrifice to prevail was important for a decade or more.
    Society has weakened, and I blame the conservatives. Conservation is supposed to preserve that which is important to society, but they focused on the wrong things, and this is the result. Through their own doing they are destroying that which they claim they want to preserve.
    Maybe it's the wrong perspective, expecting them to preserve society. Maybe they are really carpet-baggers, preserving that which is important to themselves, and leaving ruin in their wake as they move on to other sources of what they desire.
    The important are the "leaders" and those who benefit from them being in office. The rest of us are chattel. Throughout history, regardless the ruling system, the general populace was chattel to be used by the one(s) in charge. Nothing has changed except the system employed to do so (this one having some illusion that one of the chattel has control over their destiny).

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  85. I no longer expect the proper and honest thing to be done. It's all a game. One side whines, the other side stymies. Doesn't matter what side on what, just going to be polar opposites and that's the starting point. Appears to be a scripted show, no one is paying any price for their positions, either legally or politically. (Ok, Hawley went down but he brought it on himself.)

    Anyway, at my age I've given up waiting for the good man to do the right thing. If it happens I'll be elated, but I don't expect it will. I'm going to plan for the worst with no hope for the best. Part of planning for the worst is being that better citizen. But I wouldn't bet on us succeeding.

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  86. Thanks Jim. You are right of course and Mitch and the trumpites aren’t going to stop as long as they keep getaway with this crap! We do need something to have faith in.

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  87. The ones that get to me are the far left - the actual socialists and communists - who won't vote for Democrats and who seem to WANT America to fall to the right wing fascists because they think that, somehow, some way they can't explain, when all is in ruins, they think they'll be the ones who come out on top and get to remake America in their image. They don't realize they'll be up against the wall before they can say "hot to Trotsky."

    I remember voting for both parties in the past. I’ve been voting straight Democrat for at least a decade but, now, watching the normally sane Republicans in my old home state of Massachusetts go batshit crazy, one of them yelling that teachers are "telling our 5-year-old that he can go and suck another 5-year-old’s dick" and then their candidate for governor defending the candidate who said it ... there is no hope for the restoration of sane, pro-American-instead-of-pro-Trump, able-to-work-well-with-others, Republicans. This has literally become a fight for survival and if elections fail, another, rougher means of securing our survival will have to be implemented.

    I *really* hope it doesn't come to that.

    I am not optimistic.

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  88. Good post Jim. I hope that we can overcome these dark times, but my faith in my fellow countrymen is waning. The republican party should be melting down right about now, unfortunately the few remaining R's with some modicum of ethics and courage are few and far between. ( Grudgingly tips hat to a Cheney)

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  89. Excellent post, I hope this time things are different, but I am with you on this, I do not think they will be. The next decade is going to be a miserable one if things do not change.

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  90. As Masha Gessen said in her Rules for Surviving Autocracy "Institutions will not save you." Sigh - as someone who voted in every election (midterms included) since I was 18, it just hurts to see people throwing out their one right as useless. Especially when I know how many women were harmed in getting that vote. Or when so-called friends claim to use their critical thinking skills to vote against their interest.

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  91. If Garland or his DOJ had been interested in indicting Trump or any other political J6 leaders, then he and Wray should have been holding monthly press conferences since February 2021 to keep the investigation active and give reporters details on what they were doing and why, laying out a narrative for prosecution.
    Instead the FBI sent out a few dozen "do you know this guy" tweets and charged a few rioters; they have done nothing else for the last year.
    I believe this DOJ somnolence was what finally provoked the J6 Committee to act and to hold hearings. And even then, all DOJ did was ask, belatedly, for a few of their transcripts. The DOJ should be embarrassed.
    Regarding Trump, he has kept himself out of legal trouble for the last 70 years by making sure his criminal actions were always ordered by others. In any case, it is difficult to bring criminal charges against a politician for anything other than personal corruption.
    So all in all, Stonekettle, I'm not holding my breath about Garland taking Trump on.

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  92. Damn straight, head on, bulls eye. I have ALWAYS voted, even for the sleepy midterms and special elections. Yes, easy here in Oregon. We BADLY NEED a Dem presence! Put Buttigieg on a speakers circuit.

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  93. As a foreign national, I hope your fellow countrypeople do the right thing and turn out in droves to keep your republic.

    We're too close to you for your fall not to screw us over.

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  94. I don't know why you don't have faith in the DOJ but continue to show faith in voting. The DOJ, in fact all of government, is completely the result of voting. I'm going to both-sides this because they are partners in ensuring no meaningful third or fourth parties exist to spoil their control. Good cop bad cop is the act, and voting is one of the circuses, along with religion, social media and sports, paired with GMOs* as the bread. Keeping the voters fat and happy let the oligarchs win by letting the voters think they won, back and forth to keep the tension palpable and both sides engaged. This has been going on my entire life. Johnson knew of Nixon's conspiracy with the North Vietnamese and kept it quiet. And, as we all know, it is the coverup that tells you where the culpability lies. The Democrats are as fully responsible as the Republicans in giving us the system as it stands today. Their owners demand it.

    The only real change requires a French style revolution, not the revolution-lite of our Civil War I (the one where the pro-slavery side won). but one where the oligarchs, top government officials and religious leaders lose their lives. Unfortunately, our well-regulated militia (aka cops) will protect them, not realizing that it goes against their self-interest and that they are just another circus act.

    So it goes.

    *I am not anti-GMO foods; they are what will keep utter famine at bay during the Special Military Operation and COVID disruptions to food supplies.

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  95. I'll show up, Chief, just as I always do. I don't need to be inspired, or to have faith -I show up because it's my duty to the Republic. I just hope enough others show up to make a difference. Sometimes you fight the good fight because that is simply what you do, even when you have little or no hope of winning.

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  96. I am pleased to report that here in Michigan, the Absentee Ballot requests are at an all-time high for the August Primaries, up several hundred thousand over even 2020's record number. Will it help? Only time will tell. But I suspect the single biggest driver of votes here will be the "Supreme" Court (what an ironic name, these days).

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  97. Hello Jim, I enjoy reading your essays and following you on Twitter. I agree with most of what you say. I just had had a realisation of sorts. The whole purpose of the Declaration of Independence at least one pillar was no taxation without representation. I totally agree with you that the tax exempt status of the church is bs. All this hubbub about founding fathers and originalism… no taxation without representation.. well the opposite is true. No representation without taxation. Why is the church that contributes nothing at all in control of the court and one of the two parties? It’s beyond time to renege the tax exempt status of the church. But while they enjoy their free ride they have the audacity to dictate from the pulpit ??!

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