Tuesday, April 11, 2017

A Nation of Sheep

By now most of you have likely heard of what transpired on a United Airlines plane in Chicago  yesterday: when a 69 year old doctor was beaten by airline security, then manhandled and physically dragged off the airliner.  It seems the airline had a fully booked aircraft when it was discovered they needed four additional seats to transport four United employees. 

Initially the airline offered up to $800 dollars to passengers willing to take a later flight.  There were no takers, so they decided to let the computer pick four people at random to leave the plane.  Three of them took the hike like peaceful little sheep and deplaned without complaint.  The fourth however, Dr. David Dao had to get to Louisville to treat his patients; and refused to be put off the plane.

It was at this point that the security goons were instructed by someone to physically remove the gentleman from the aircraft; and they did.  He was struck in the mouth and began bleeding from the lip as they dragged him like a duffel bag down the aisle of the plane.  Dr. Dao suffered a concussion, a broken nose, and lost several teeth in the brutal removal process. 

Yes everything about what happened was reprehensible; especially the reaction, or lack thereof, from the remaining passengers.  On the cell phone video taken by a passengers ONE woman can be heard kind of protesting the rough Gestapo like action and it was a chorus of one.  There were a couple of sarcastic wise-ass remarks made, but no real protest.   On a flight so full of humans there was a shocking lack of humanity.  The entire lot of them just sat there and not only watched this crime take place, they allowed it to happen by not standing up in defense of their fellow passenger.  As if filming video was the limit of civic responsibility.

The Silence of the Lambs

I'm really curious, were the other passengers indifferent because Mr. Dao was Asian, or because as well behaved cattle they feared the same treatment?  Yes the fine print in the 'carrier agreement' you sign to get a ticket to fly says the airlines can do pretty much whatever they want to you while on their aircraft; but we know nobody ever reads that stuff, so the passengers weren't silent and compliant because the airline goons were allowed to treat humans like garbage...it's some other reason

They were silent because they were afraid that if they stood against this kind of treatment something as bad or worse might happen to them.  The nail that sticks up gets hammered back down.  It's true, they really have turned us into a nation of sheep, and lamentably there may be no way back for us at this late date. Nation of sheep, ruled by wolves & owned by pigs.

To his credit, Mr. Dao managed to slip back aboard the airliner, determined to not be deprived of what he'd paid for.  I believe the news said he wasn't allowed to remain on the flight.  Now, in the aftermath of this incident we see a flurry of "news" stories all from Dr. Dao's past which all seek to somehow discredit him as a decent human being as if to justify what was done to him.
I have no idea whether any of these allegations about Dr. Dao are true, but it simply doesn't matter.  Nothing from his past has anything whatsoever to do with what happened on that aircraft, period.  Those who dig up & make up such things to publish are not journalists, but rather ghouls who are pushing the party line of totalitarianism as if it was normal and right, which if course it is not.  The only thing Dr. Dao was guilty of was being Vietnamese-American and thinking he had the right to stand up for his rights as a citizen.

This man committed no crime, brought no contraband aboard the plane, and said nothing to bring about his forced, bloody eviction from the plane.  All he did was insist on getting what he paid for, and that got him a beat down...and everyone there just watched.  This is nothing new of course, we humans have a bit of a history of not wanting to get involved: whether we see a beating, or children in public being struck for misbehavior, or a woman being abused in public.  We say it's not our business as an excuse to turn away, avert our gaze and pretend it isn't happening.  

We let these things slide at our peril.  Yes today there is a hue & cry for a boycott against United Airlines, which is good and all that, but what would have been so very much better is if the other passengers had refused to permit the violation of thus man's human and constitutional rights in the first place.  We have to make a stand somewhere, sometime don't we?  It might as well be right when the shit is going down, because the way we are doing things nowadays ensures us that when it is your turn to be dragged away by the Gestapo there will be no one left to complain or protest.  If we do not defend everyone's rights then nobody has any left.

© 2017 full re-post with permission only 

See For Yourself

Friday, April 7, 2017

Democracy Dies in Darkness

I had it all worked out in my head, how my new post would once again focus light and criticism upon the foundering Trump regime and it's various keystone cops players. 

It was gonna be funny, I was gonna toss in a generous amount of humor, like "Barbie Hands" is the new POTUS secret service code name, and that Trump refused the tradition of throwing out the first pitch of the baseball season, because his hands are too small to hold a baseball. 

I can't do that post now, maybe not ever, because Donald Trump has once again doubled down on just how low of a lowlife he genuinely is; and I'm no longer in a laughing mood.  Instead of a light hearted, possibly even optimistic bit of comic relief I must now write about what has made my soul vomit.

Trump has always used words and language as a means of attack, to demean and destroy his enemies.  Always before we mostly ignored him, so his vile sputterings caused little real harm.  It's different now that he is the acting president.  He tweets disparaging remarks about a company and their stock drops a few points.  He says offensive things to world leaders who have up till now been allies, and America gets an embarrassing black eye diplomatically.  Trump has now seen how much power his words have, and keeps escalating his rhetoric to create even worse damage such as what we witnessed in horror this week.

On April 1st, Trump publicly states that Syria's dictator Assad should remain in power and not be held responsible for six years of war crimes against his people.
On April 4th Assad again used nerve gas on his own people, killing 80, wounding 300
On April 4th Trump states the Syrian gas attack was Obama's fault.

Donald Trump is responsible for those 80 dead & 300 wounded in Syria.  Without his encouraging words of support and endorsement, would Assad still have launched that attack?  Maybe, it was the third or forth such nerve gas attack in recent weeks. Maybe not!  One thing is very clear, however and that is that days after Trump's appeasement; Assad commits another crime against humanity.  Cause & effect.

This is a milestone in the Trump chronicles that must not be swept away like so many before it.  This is the first time his public statement has directly resulted in 80 people dead in a crime against humanity.  How typical and cowardly of Trump to rush right out after the massacre and cast blame away from himself by accusing his predecessor of being weak.  How typical and cravenly he tried to politicize the attack.  Mr. President, you are a coward.  Simple as that!

Trump is on record as being against any action against Syria.  He even tweeted President Obama, advising against military reprisal.  Of course he doesn't want to act militarily against Syria because they're backed by Russian anti-aircraft units and on scene Russian soldiers and "advisors."  Trump is between a Russian and a hard place on this one, especially considering his bromance with Vladimir Putin.  What will Trump do, dangers abound no matter how he decides.  Perhaps he will pass this one off on his multi-tasking son-in-law.

 It matters not a single whit that Trump announced on Wednesday April 5th that he had changed his mind about Syria and Assad; that was his handlers feeding him sound bytes for the lamestream press.  Trump had but a single chance to be on the right side of history but he wasted his opportunity by trying to cast blame elsewhere. 

My biggest concern here is now that Trump has seen just how powerful his words are; he will conjure up a new grouping of words to see if he can increase the body count.  That's the thing about these narcissistic war mongers; they are addicted to the bloodsport of carnage, and motivated by getting a higher body count than the other despot dictators, and as with everything else, Trump wants more, his must be the bigly best body count.

"Is it progress if the cannibal uses a fork?"
                                                 ~ Stanislaw Jerzy Lec ~

Adding to the formula for disaster Trump is meeting with the President of China, who he accused of raping the United States; which Trump considers to be his job.  I wonder if they'll shake hands.

Trumps administration is fast becoming a dumpster fire with all the scandalous leaks, and flagrant violations of laws & traditions serving as background music for Russiagate.  So many protested so loudly that Steve Bannon was finally kicked off national security council, good riddance.  Little victories.  They'll all add up.

Another one bites the dust.  Investigator Nunes just resigned today amid all the bad press about his breaking bad.  Next we must push for Jeff Sessions to resign in disgrace and return to 1959.  Bad enough he lied under oath to congress and all of us Americans, but now he's talking about coming for my medical marijuana too.  He has to go, or he will drag us all back to 1959 with him. Little victories.  They're dropping like flies.

Trump, the brooding tyrant-in-the-making strolls thru the white house in his clown like seven foot long red tie and Darth Vader like coat which conceals both his bulk and barbed prehensile tail!  He is followed close behind by the scurrying little feet of his feral yes men & nay sayers who share the duty of not letting any reality seep into the dark & putrid  bubble that is Trumpland: the place democracy went to die. 

Some experts are saying that Donald Trump is actually anosognosic, which is a kind of reality denial brain disorder.  Woodrow Wilson suffered from it, and some historians think it led to WW2

In the professional wrestling industry there is a kind of code word among the participants and insiders, "Kayfabe."  It means that everybody is keeping the same secrets, everybody reads off the same talking points...everybody works to sustain the illusion of real.  Kayfabe, kinda almost sounds like pig latin for fake...and that is exactly what is going on with the dumpster fire that is the Trump abomination.

"Follow the trail of dead Russians"
                                      ~ Clint Watts ~

So, 15 thousand Russian trolls were spreading fake news and conspiracy theories, sometimes directly tweeting to Trump when they knew he was online, all trying to effect our election.  Turns out quite a few people on team Trump had some curious and illegal contacts with Russian spies; and most of them also spoke repeatedly with the same Russian diplomat.  The more Trump attempts to conceal the depth of his connections to Russia, the more facts tumble to the surface and more of this smelly iceberg can be seen.

One Trump son states they have a great many business deals on going with Russia, that they have a lot of money flowing in from Russia.  The other Trump son claims they have no business associations with Russia at all? 
Since the day Trump was elected, six soviet diplomats have turned up dead and apparently each time one died; Trump took off to Mar a Lago for a weekend of golfing paid for by American taxpayers.  If he is so filthy rich and can afford to finance his own  campaign and turn down his government paycheck; then how come he can't pay for his own vacations?  Each needless trip to Mar a Lago in Florida costs the American taxpayers 3.5 million dollars.  Adding insult to injury, while there he always dines in his own restaurant so we are actually paying Trump to eat in his own restaurant. 

Not only does Trump run off to Florida seemingly every weekend to golf, he also insists upon hosting foreign dignitaries there as well.  When one considers that Camp David was built for that expressed, exact purpose, it just seems like a real intentional slap in the face followed by the single finger salute every weekend when Trump flies south.  And no, you aren't loosing your mind, Trump actually said many times that he would seldom leave the white house and seldom take time off.  Narcissistic liar.   

Trump invents new wild claim that Obama wiretapped him during campaign; in order to draw attention away from Russiagate scandal. Unfortunately for Trump it seems to be having the opposite effect.  One or more of our on-going spying operations listening in on Russian conversations have discovered several calls with Trump on the other end of the line.

"America First" isn't Trump's rally cry...it's Putin's!

I really dislike the popular trend of belittling Trump voters & supporters as a group by calling them stupid etc.  Firstly it serves no good purpose to do so, just further alienates the various factions which is the opposite of the unity we so desperately need just now.  Secondly I do not believe as many voted for the orange turd blossom as the record indicates.  They cooked the books. There was so much dicking around with the election between the democrats doing it, the republicans doing it and the Russians doing it as well... the old adage still holds; "Too many cooks spoil the soup." 

Trump celebrated the 100th anniversary of America entering into world war one by dropping a 59 cruise missile response to Syrian atrocities.  No doubt a photo-op cooked up with Putin to make Trump appear strong.  Trump is just too much of a coward to risk killing any of Putin's soldiers, so they struck a deal.  "Just leave the runways alone."

So Trump gets to look good while getting rid of 95 million bucks worth of aging Tomahawk missiles.  I saw that sadistically evil smile on his face as he announced the strike on Syria, he was having himself a wargasm right there on camera, just contemplating what the total body count would be, come morning.

This whole sordid affair was cooked up as pure street theater to pull the worlds attention away from "Russiagate" and the raging dumpster fire that is the Trump presidency.  This is just exactly what Trump needed to regain the confidence of his base supporters.  The problem arises if and when Trump decides that if a little of this kind of glue is good, more must certainly be better.  What happens when the morning body count inspires still greater actions and even more corpses.  We need to remember that this is the same man who wanted missile parades, and asked "why we don't use nukes if we have them."  Yes, remember that every day!

With so many bad actors on the world stage it is fairly certain that nothing is as it seems and that goes for this whole Syria story as well.  There is no way to tell what the real actual truth of the matter is but you can bet it ain't being delivered on the TV by talking heads reading from todays talking points.

"You Want it Darker,
We Kill the Flame..."
                            ~Leonard Cohen~

Have you noticed how it is that everything Trump does is in the shadows.  Hides his taxes and lies about being audited; hell, he lies about everything.  He does the exact opposite of what he promises, and never gives specific answers to any question.  There is a decided darkness to how this one does business, and indeed, who he is in business with.  He doesn't want you to know because he thrives in secrecy.  Mushrooms, mold and fungus all thrive in darkness, but democracy dies in it. 

Democracy needs the light of day at high noon, transparency and accountability in order to thrive.  When deprived of these necessities democracy begins to erode into something more like Kleptocracy.  With Donald Trump's ascension to the presidency American democracy has slipped to it's lowest ever ebb tide.  What will be left when the pirates & plunder monkeys are all done?  That's a good question and the answer could get complicated because of so many moving parts.  At times like these the ancients would consult with an augur to cast the auspices for the future; what we would call looking for omens.

Well I am an augur and do I have an omen for your consideration!  On the same day that Trump gave his address to congress and the American people; no fewer than 25 tornadoes erupted across eight Midwestern states.  I'm thinking here that was an actual act of God speaking out against Trump omen.

© 2017 full re-post with permission only 


Michael Franti - "Good to be Alive today"

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