Category Archives: national news

Loony bin wing strikes back

The loony bin wing of the Republican Party comprises two Texas congressmen who were among just nine House members to vote against legislation that aims to fast-track baby formula which — you likely have heard — is in critically short supply.

Reps. Louie Gohmert of Tyler and Chip Roy of Austin voted “no” on a bill that seeks to grant women on federal assistance greater access to the formula.

Texas is among the worst-hit states in this current crisis. President Biden has just invoked the Defense Production Act to facilitate delivery of the formula to families with infants.

The Texas Tribune was unable to obtain a comment from Gohmert. Roy delivered a message. The Tribune reported: “The only way to get more formula to American families is to fix the crony policies that prevent more U.S. companies from producing it, remove barriers to innovation, and allow imports from trusted nations; the legislation Democrats put forward does none of that,” he said. Calling the Biden administration “demonstrably incompetent,” he called the shortage “the direct result of unnecessary federal regulations and of a bloated bureaucracy that failed to recognize the problem before it spiraled out of control.”

Two Texas Republicans vote no on bill to help poor mothers get formula | The Texas Tribune

Well, Congress was able to act in that rare bipartisan fashion to approve the legislation, no thanks to the stubbornness of two Texas Republicans.

Shame on them.

Paging Rex Tillerson … hello?

Of all the individuals from the Donald J. Trump administration who have fallen off the grid, one of them stands out to where I want to know what he must be thinking about the trouble that continues to swirl around the ex-POTUS.

Rex Tillerson. Perhaps you recall he was Trump’s initial secretary of state. Trump nominated the tough-talking Texan, the one-time Exxon-Mobil chief executive officer to lead our diplomatic corps. He didn’t last very long in the job, about 13 months.

He called Trump a “fu**ing moron,” never denied saying it and then got canned via Twitter message that Trump fired off.

Tillerson wasn’t an effective secretary of state, to be sure. How could he be, given that he reported to a numbskull who undercut him at every turn?

And, yes, he was right about the moronic status of the then-POTUS.

What in the world is this fellow thinking these days as we watch the 1/6 committee zero in on Trump, his key aides and the events that led to the insurrection against the government?

He probably doesn’t wish to be thrust back under the glare of the political spotlight. Some of us, though, want to hear what’s on his mind and in his heart.

Are you out there, Rex?

Step aside, Texas GOP

Texas Republicans have taken their share of hits from critics over the quality of the candidates they nominate for public office.

I am going to pronounce at this moment that the Texas GOP has been eclipsed in the loony bin category of political nut jobs by their colleagues in Pennsylvania, where a true-blue 2020 election denier has been nominated to run for governor of that great state.

Doug Mastriano is now the GOP nominee Pennsylvania governor. He served in the state senate. His foe this fall will be Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro, the Democrat who ran unopposed in his state’s primary.

Far-right election denier Mastriano wins GOP race for governor in Pennsylvania (

Mastriano, to be brutally candid, is a seriously dangerous man to run one of the nation’s most populous and important states.

He believes President Biden and Democrats stole the 2020 election from Donald Trump. He would get to appoint the next secretary of state in Pennsylvania and would be likely to find a fellow denier to lead that state’s election in 2024.

He tried to get fake Trump electors seated for the certification of the 2020 results in Pennsylvania; Biden won the state’s electoral votes, but Mastriano sought to overturn those results.

Oh … my.

I now will declare my own preference for Pennsylvania governor. Josh Shapiro must win to preserve the rule of law and to save the democratic process in one of the states where it all began in the United States of America.

Biden delivers comfort, resolve

Joe Biden’s job description includes far more than signing documents in the Oval Office and making decisions that involve sending young men and women into harm’s way.

The president also must serve as comforter in chief. That role isn’t written anywhere. It’s just what presidents are called upon to do when the moment presents itself.

That moment arrived the other day when a white supremacist lunatic opened fire at a Buffalo, N.Y., supermarket; the gunman killed 10 Black Americans and injured three others.

Buffalo is shaken to its core. Its residents are horrified at the actions of a teenager who (allegedly) drove to the community, scope out the store and then committed the dastardly act.

Joe Biden demonstrated one of the key elements he brings to the presidency. He has suffered personal grief himself. He has buried two of his children and his wife. He spoke to Buffalo as a man who — and please pardon the phrase — feels their pain.

The president showed the entire world why many of us — such as me — are glad he is in the office he occupies.

Think for a minute of the Charlottesville, Va., riot in 2017. Klansmen, Nazis and assorted white supremacist goons gathered in that city to protest the taking down of a Civil War statue. A riot ensued when these individuals engaged with counter protestors. What did Donald Trump tell us? That there were “good people, on both sides.”

No. There were not.

The Editorial Board: Biden meets with survivors of the slain and lifts up a shaken and suffering city | Editorial |

The Buffalo News offered an editorial that stated, in part: But it was Biden’s words that carried weight in Buffalo on Tuesday. He offered an emotional roll call of the dead, but promised their survivors that some unexpected day, a memory of their lost loved one would bring a bittersweet surprise: “It’s going to bring a smile to your lip before it brings a tear to your eye,” the president said.

The president of the United States performed one of those unwritten tasks. The goodness of this man was evident as he sought to lend comfort to a stricken community.

Headed to Land of Oz?

Pennsylvania’s Republican Party voters appear to be punching their tickets for a trip to the Land of Oz. God help them!

Mehmet Oz is leading — albeit barely — over Dave McCormick in the GOP primary balloting for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Republican Pat Toomey, who is retiring.

I won’t spend a lot of time on this nonsense, given Oz’s lack of credentials or credibility. He got the endorsement from Donald J. Trump for reasons that have nothing to do with public policy. Trump likes celebrities, and Oz fits that description.

I consider Oz, once a practicing physician, to be a quack. Trump thinks he’s the greatest.

I am going to pull hard for Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. John Fetterman, who won the Democratic primary easily, to defeat the GOP winner. Whether it’s Oz or McCormick, it matters little. They’re both repugnant.

If it’s Oz, then Fetterman can start with the fact that Oz doesn’t even live in the state he wants to represent in the Senate. He’ll figure out the rest of it.

GOP is capable of nominating weirdos, nut jobs

MAGA candidates are running amok in the Republican Party primary elections throughout the nation.

One or two MAGA goofballs are likely to be nominated for high public office by Republican voters in places such as Pennsylvania and North Carolina. There will be more of them.

They have earned the endorsement of Donald J. Trump — the MAGA in Chief.

My favorite candidate to earn the Trump seal of endorsement has to be Mehmet Oz, the one-time Dr. Oz who’s running for a U.S. Senate in seat in Pennsylvania. Get this: Oz doesn’t live in Pennsylvania. That didn’t matter one little bit to Trump, who gave Oz his endorsement because, I suppose, he’s a celebrity; Trump likes celebrities, right?

I’m not sure whether Trump’s anointing of Oz is going to work; he’s facing another MAGA-ite in Pennsylvania.

Republican voters have some key decisions to make. Do they want to throw their party over to the cult leader who keeps putting his ample ass into these primary fights?

Aww, hell. I don’t care if they do. Let them follow their cult leader over the cliff.

Trump is a menace to our governmental system simply by being on the fringes of a major party’s primary fight. Accordingly, it will fascinate me to no end to watch how the GOP primary season plays out.

Whether it becomes a MAGA haven or returns to semblance of its senses will depend on whether the voters have become intoxicated by the snake-oil swill served up by The Donald.

Silence is instructive

A gunman opened fire in a Buffalo, N.Y., supermarket, killing 10 people and injuring three others.

The condemnation of the shooter’s actions has come almost exclusively, or so it appears, from the left, from the liberal side of the political divide.

I am waiting — with decreasing patience — to hear something from the right wing, from the conservative wing of the great divide. It’s not coming. At least not within my earshot.

What the … ?

I am at this moment shuddering at the thought that thoughtful, conservative Americans have elected politicians who — for whatever reason — are afraid to speak out against the hateful actions of the individual who drove to Buffalo, staked out the supermarket and then opened fire. A white guy shot 10 Black people to death in a fit of rage over something called “replacement theory.”

Someone will have to assure me that these pols’ silence doesn’t equate tacit or even overt support of what took place.

I am waiting.

Now … for my favorite

Those who read this blog regularly know that I have spent countless hours blasting politicians and assorted other public figures for reasons that run far and wide across the field of thought.

At this moment, I intend to take a look at another type of pol and public figure: the individuals who do good for us and those who fit the mold that comports with my own bias.

The most loathsome politician walking among us — hands down! — continues to be Donald J. Trump. I won’t waste my time — or your time, for that matter — rehashing what I already have put on the record about The Donald.

Who’s my favorite politician? I need to give that some serious thought.

What do I want in a politician? I want that person who is able to work with pols of both major parties. I want him or her to be able to compromise without surrendering his or her principles. I want my favorite pol to be aware of his or her place in history at all times. I want that politician to be able to make brave decisions in tough times.

I guess you could surmise I am talking about President Biden. Hmm. I might be.

I consider myself to be a “good government progressive.” I am not wedded to strict ideology. Being a 70-plus-year-old red-blooded American patriot, my strict ideology days are long behind me. I used to admire ideologues when I was in my 20s and 30s. Then I learned about all those shades of gray that color our arguments.

Let me ponder something for just a moment. My favorite politician or public figure?

I’ll take the plunge and declare it to be Joseph R. Biden Jr.

I want him to succeed. Given the goals he has declared for the nation, we all will benefit from his success.

Looking for evil intent?

The right-wing goon squad that is on the hunt for evil intent involving President Biden and his son, Hunter, are going to stop at nothing to concoct some nefarious plot that — as I look at it — defies logic.

Hunter Biden went to work years ago for a Ukrainian energy company, serving on the board and raking in a lot of dough for doing, allegedly, nothing to earn it. I get that it doesn’t look good for someone to trade on his famous parent’s name for considerable profit. Hey, it happens; e.g.: Donald Jr. and Eric Trump.

What about dear ol’ Dad, though? Are we supposed to believe that a man who has spent virtually his entire adult professional life in public service is going to throw it all away with an obviously careless and corrupt practice? The right-wingers want us to believe that President Biden himself profited from Hunter’s association with the energy firm.

Yes, that the president of the United States of America hauled in cash and fattened his own bank account. How does someone with half a brain even think he can get away with such a thing when the public is watching his every move?

Joe Biden served for eight years as vice president in the Barack Obama administration. Prior to being elected VP, he served for 36 years as a U.S. senator from Delaware. Prior to that, Biden served on a county council as a Democratic representative.

I did the math: That’s 52 years of public service. 

And yet the right-wingers want us to believe that a man who’s been under the public’s prying eyes would be stupid enough to take money while his son is working as a board member for a foreign-based energy firm.

One more point. During the first impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump’s quest for a political favor from Ukraine, a prosecutor in that country declared categorically that neither Joe nor Hunter Biden committed any crimes.

Still, the hunt goes on. To what end? To seek to destroy the career of the man who defeated Donald Trump.

Don’t wait for ‘tipping point’

Bad news is tough to deliver, but I feel the need to deliver it to those who believe the Buffalo, N.Y., supermarket massacre is going to result in a “tipping point” that prompts legislation to prevent this kind of gun violence.

The nation grieves once again as it mourns the deaths of 10 innocent victims who were gunned down in a supermarket by someone who (allegedly) acted with intense racist intent. The suspect is a white teenager; virtually all of the victims are African-American. The suspect drove 200-plus miles to Buffalo to perform his dastardly act.

Tipping point? Will this event bring some Republicans in Congress to join their colleagues in seeking some sort of legislative remedy to this sort of senseless violence?

My “gold standard” for an event that would spur some action occurred in late 2012 in Newtown, Conn. A lunatic killed 20 first- and second-graders along with six educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School. He then killed himself.

It was the darkest day of President Obama’s time in office. The president’s eyes welled up with tears as he told the nation of the slaughter that occurred. Did that event — given the context — result in any sort of legislative remedy? No. It didn’t.

Congress’s failure to act turned out to be the biggest disappointment in Barack Obama’s two terms as president.

I wish I could predict that this latest spasm of violence would prompt action from those who represent those of us who demand action. I cannot go there!

My profound fear is that we’re going to express our horror, offer our prayers to the family members of the victims and then wait for the next explosion of violence.