We are a ‘secular government,’ dammit!

I keep hearing about how U.S. House Speaker Mike Johnson cloaks himself in the New Testament, about how he is pushing the doctrine of “Christian nationalism.”

Sigh … I want to remind the speaker and those who adhere to his reported view of how government should function of this irrefutable fact: You won’t find the word “God” anywhere in the U.S. Constitution. Why is that? Because the men who wrote it consciously avoided using such language because they had fled religious oppression in Europe. They wrote a secular document that establishes that human beings should determine our laws and that they should not be influenced by a specific religion. Yes, I am talking about Christianity. The founders established in Article VI that there must be “no religious test” to determine who should run for public office. The First Amendment to the Constitution lays out a number of civil liberties that deserve protection from government interference; the first one of them is religion, as the amendment declares that “Congress shall make no law” that establishes a state religion. Speaker Johnson needs to put a sock in his proclamation of faith. It is admirable that he is a man of strong faith. That is as far he should go, and he must end this rhetoric that attaches references to God to legislation enacted by fallible men and women.

Biden inquiry: waste of time … and money

Congressional Republicans approved the President Biden impeachment inquiry a few months ago.

Their aim — and, yes, their desire — is to find something on which to impeach the president. They have come up empty. There’s no “there, there,” to borrow a phrase from the late Gertrude Stein.

It just appears to me that there never will be evidence of a “high crime” or a “misdemeanor” on which to impeach the president.

If ever we are witnessing a vendetta, this is it. Republicans still are steaming over the House’s impeachment — twice, in fact — of the president who most recently wore the GOP label. (Be advised that I won’t mention the moron’s name on this blog). 

Yeah, I know the Senate acquitted him but only because the GOP majority in the upper chamber lacked the guts to convict him of (a) soliciting a political favor from a foreign head of state and (b) inciting the mob to storm the Capitol Building on Jan. 6. I point out, too, that on the second impeachment, the Senate recorded 57 votes to convict the POTUS of inciting the mob, but the constitutional standard required the Senate to find 67 votes to boot the president from office.

In both cases, you had actual high crimes on which to convict, but it didn’t happen.

Republicans are launching their own inquiry into whether to impeach Joe Biden. I am still scratching my noggin and wondering: What in the name of vengeance is the crime? What has Joe Biden done, specifically, to merit this phony inquiry? 

Has anyone produced anything resembling a crime, or an allegation of a crime? No! They have not! Instead, we now hear that a key witness who was supposed to produce the goods has been indicted for lying to the FBI. Pretty damn credible, eh?

This matter will produce the same result that the GOP witch hunt into “Benghazi” produced. Not a damn thing!

It is a monumental waste of time. Indeed, it is a waste of money that Republicans keep telling us we cannot afford to spend on important issues that matter.

Hey, it wasn’t a blowout!

Time for an admission from yours truly. I have been misrepresenting the nature of Joe Biden’s victory in the 2020 presidential election.

So, today I am going to offer a mea culpa and set the record straight. It’s important to set the table for the probable rematch between President Biden and the fool he defeated four years ago.

Biden captured 306 electoral votes in 2020; he needed 270 of them to win. I took a quick look at the results from four key states that will be contested heavily this time around.

Arizona, Georgia, Wisconsin and Pennsylvania all voted for Joe Biden in 2020. Biden’s margin of victory in all four states was around 123,000 votes … total!

Had his opponent flipped 64,000 or so votes in those four states in 2020, he would have captured the 65 electoral votes that went to President Biden, who would have finished with 241 electoral votes, with 297 of them going to the former Idiot in Chief.

Imagine, too, that even with Biden’s 7 million popular vote cushion, he still would have lost to The Former Guy.

This is worth mentioning because the stakes in 2024 are even more grim than they were in 2020. The one-time Moron in Chief has vowed to be his supporters’ “retribution.” He has actually pledged to sic the Department of Justice on his foes … and to think he and his MAGA cult followers have accused President Biden of “weaponizing” the DOJ.

This idiot has yet to concede that he actually lost the 2020 election and vows to assume dictatorial powers “if only for a day” if he darkens the Oval Office door yet again.

Americans must not let this guy anywhere near the center of power ever again. Not … ever!

Mayor wants to build city identity

Princeton (Texas) Mayor Brianna Chacon and yours truly are of like minds on an important subject.

We both happen to agree that the city over which she presides lacks a personality, an identity, a characteristic that defines it.

She wants to change the direction the city has been traveling for the past decade or even longer. I happen to agree wholeheartedly with her intent.

To be clear, I am going to declare that I wrote about this very thing some weeks ago. Chacon a few days ago mentioned it publicly in a State of the City speech she delivered at the Princeton school district administration building. I will not presume for an instant that she got the idea from my blog. However, it is heartening to believe that we are of like minds.

Seek an identity, Princeton | High Plains Blogger

Chacon announced her intention to enact a residential building moratorium. She wants to build up the city’s infrastructure, to bring it up to speed to provide for the thousands of people who have moved here in the past two decades.

The population today is estimated at about 28,000 residents, which is roughly 11,000 more people listed on the 2020 Census. “We grew too quickly,” Chacon told the Princeton ISD admin building crowd. Princeton has become a classic “bedroom community” comprising thousands of new homes.

Residents say they love living here, Chacon said, adding that the city needs to “give them a reason” for why they have embraced this community.

Chacon said she is excited about the city’s decision to hire Mike Mashburn as its new city manager. She believes he brings a refreshing new outlook to municipal management. It’s too early to tell whether Mashburn is the right man for the task, but I, too, am optimistic.

Chacon said the city’s identity is hidden from view. “We have been piecemealed together,” she said of Princeton’s growth history. Her intent, as I heard her say it the other day, is to craft a municipal identity for Princeton, giving it a personality.

Brianna Chacon and I are singing off the same page. Welcome aboard, Mme. Mayor.

Haley would pardon traitors? Wow!

Nikki Haley had me for a little while … then she lost me with a bizarre proclamation.

She said this past weekend that if she’s elected president should pardon the guy she’s trying to beat for the GOP nomination if he’s convicted of federal crimes, including one that alleges he tried to overthrow the federal government in the wake of the 2020 presidential election.

Wow, man! That is some leap for a candidate who doesn’t appear to stand a chance of being nominated by the Republican Party let alone being elected by all Americans this fall.

Ponder for a moment what the former South Carolina governor and former U.N. ambassador is promising. She would issue a full presidential pardon to an individual who could be convicted of siccing the traitorous mob on the Capitol on Jan. 6; the mob threatened to “hang Mike Pence!” if the VP went through with his constitutional task of certifying the results of the vote that elected Joe Biden president.

All of this is pure speculation, of course. Haley is trailing the criminal defendant running for POTUS in every poll being conducted; the margins are astronomical.

I actually pondered whether I would vote for her were she to somehow be nominated this summer. That pondering moment has now officially passed, given the absurd pledge she made to pardon the idiot she wants to defeat for the GOP nomination.

It was nice knowin’ ya, Nikki Haley.

Haley faces last stand

Nikki Haley is facing a potential last stand in South Carolina, where she once served as governor and where she appears to be headed for a drubbing by an individual who has no business running for — let alone occupying — the presidency of the United States.

Haley says she isn’t quitting, regardless of where she ends up when the votes are counted Saturday. She’ll continue to battle the GOP frontrunner all the way to the finish, she said.

We’ll see about that.

The former POTUS is facing a court date in March. Another one might loom soon after that one. Then there might be a major court battle for the former Liar in Chief to wage. That’s the one alleging that he instigated a hostile takeover attempt of the government, by blocking the counting of 2020 electoral votes that determined that Joe Biden had been elected president.

The former POTUS has been living the Big Lie since Biden defeated him. He has been convicted of sexually assaulting an author, been levied fines totaling nearly a half-billion dollars. There’s more to come.

Still, he’s the GOP frontrunner in a contest where character no longer matters.

He leads Haley by 20-something or nearly 30 percentage points. How the former governor justifies staying in the race is a mystery.

She said she’s in it for the duration. It might be that she cannot stomach the idea of remaining faithful to the pledge she made to support the GOP nominee if it isn’t her.

Time is about to tell us the truth about that pledge … and whether Nikki Haley is in it for keeps.

End the all-star games!

Here’s a thought, and I admit it’s not an original one … but the National Basketball Association needs to end the annual all-star game.

The same for the National Football League and the National Hockey League. End ’em! Don’t bother putting on these charades where the athletes play zero defense.

The NBA’s latest disaster this past weekend had one of the teams scoring 211 points. 211 points! What the hell?

This is preposterous! I get that the athletes don’t want to get hurt. I don’t blame them for that. I do believe that the NBA is doing a disservice to them and to the fans who show up to watch these guys perform. Same for the NFL, which too often has players going through the blocking and tackling motions. Oh, and the NHL, which often produces all-star games with scores like 12-10.

OK, that all said, Major League Baseball should continue its all-star contests, which because of the nature of the sport can produce actual competition featuring players working hard to win the game.

Perhaps the most famous — or infamous — MLB all-star moment came in 1970 when Cincinnati’s Pete Rose sought to score a run and crashed into Cleveland catcher Ray Fosse who was guarding the plate. Rose was running full tilt down the third base line. The crash injured Fosse so seriously that he never was able to play the game at a high level; the event essentially ended his playing career.

The rest of the major pro sports leagues, though, need not bother to stage these idiotic exhibitions. They aren’t worth watching.

Loathe the man and his standing

My noggin cannot comprehend a lot of things in life, so to be clear I want to stipulate that at times I am not the sharpest knife in the drawer.

Among the more incomprehensible elements of life that puzzles me is the standing that the 45th POTUS continues to have among Americans who think he deserves another term in the White House.

I won’t regurgitate the many negative comments I have made about him since the moment he and his wife rode down the NYC office tower escalator in June 2015 as he announced his first run for the presidency.

I’ll make one exception, though. I want to remind every reader of this blog of this fact, which is beyond dispute: This bozo spent his entire adult professional life — every … waking … minute of it — with one goal in mind: self-enrichment and self-aggrandizement. He did not devote a single moment of his miserable life to public service.

Yet he stood there and proclaimed himself to be the champion of the “little guy,” the individual he personally loathed as a “loser” and a chump. He called himself a populist, even though he likely doesn’t know the definition of the type of pol he proclaimed himself to be.

His goal in life was to make lots of money for himself. It has been revealed now in court proceedings brought against him that he is as Mitt Romney described him: a “phony and a fraud.”

Anyone human being who feels the need to declare out loud the he is “really rich” and “really smart” never achieves such wealth, nor is he smart enough to know that undeniable fact.

Yet here this guy stands. He was impeached twice by the U.S. House. He has been indicted four times by federal and state grand juries on 91 criminal counts. He vows to be “your retribution” if he’s elected later this year.

And they still believe in this guy?

God help us if this all comes to pass.

What about Article VI?

A weekly newsletter published by a gentleman in Amarillo makes an astonishing assertion about whom he believes to be the “most powerful figure” in Texas.

Steve Pair cites the work of Tim Dunn, a Permian Basin oilman who is working to elect only Christians to public office in Texas.

Pair writes: Tim Dunn, isn’t an elected official. But behind the scenes, the West Texas oilman is lavishly financing what he regards as a holy war against public education, renewable energy, and non-Christians.

Wow! I know a little bit about the work Dunn has done and the havoc he has brought to West Texas politicians and politics over the years. He runs Empower Texans, a far-right-wing political action committee that takes aim at GOP officeholders. Former state Sen. Kel Seliger of Amarillo was a favorite target of Dunn’s group, drawing the unvarnished wrath of Seliger.

The point I want to make, though, is that attacks on non-Christian candidates violates an article in the Constitution that was drafted and ratified by our nation’s founding fathers.

Article VI concludes with this: ” … but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States.”

The founders could not possibly be clearer than what they declared in the late 18th century when they cobbled together our nation’s governing framework.

The impossible is now — gulp! — possible

What once was deemed in my own mind to be an impossible occurrence has dramatically become possible … even remotely so.

I mention this only because what I once thought would never occur very well could happen in about 10 months, when we have our 2024 presidential election.

The idiot whom President Biden defeated in 2020 just might reverse that outcome when they count the ballots at the end of this year’s campaign.

All of this begs a question that has been tearing at my gut for the past little bit: How in the world is the president of the United States going to respond to the formalities associated with handing over the keys to the White House to the president-elect?

Joe Biden is steeped in tradition. He knows what he’s supposed to do, in that he knows to extend an invitation to the man that defeated him to meet in the White House. Again, though, how does the president do so when the invitee is an individual who:

  • Never acknowledged losing the 2020 election.
  • Savaged the current president during his entire term in office.
  • Has vowed to run the country like a dictatorship if only for a day.
  • Cozies up to the very dictator against whom this nation has been aiding Ukraine in its fight against Russian aggression.
  • Has told Russia he would bless any effort for that rogue nation to do “whatever the hell they want” against any NATO nation that doesn’t pay its fair share of dues?

Joe Biden vowed to seek to save the “soul of this nation” when he declared his 2020 presidential candidacy. By my reckoning, he has largely succeeded in that mission. Now, though, he just might have to surrender to the nitwit who preceded him as our commander in chief and head of state.

So help me, it pains me to acknowledge what might occur when they count the ballots on Nov. 5. Just try for a moment to put yourself in Joe Biden’s shoes as he ponders what well could be stirring in his own mind.