July 2021

Thank you to everyone who volunteered, via last week’s Comments and my email, to educate the MAGAt in my life. You know who you are, you wonderful, cahooting, outlaw, democracy-loving truth-warriors.  By now I hope you’ve received your mail from me, providing that the USPS is still a going concern where you live. Please note that I have removed that portion of last week’s blog to protect our psy-op, wink wink, nudge nudge.

It’s been a very rainy July here on the north shore of Long Island, the wettest July in over 50 years. I like rainy days. I like laying on the couch reading a murder mystery and rainy days give you permission to do just that and feel “productive”. I was reading one murder mystery last week and the story starts out with the main character, an English lady, taking a vacation to Robinson Caruso Island, which is waaaay off the coast of Chile. The character tours the place, then goes back to England via Santiago, and nothing else in the book relates to this trip to Robinson Caruso Island. Why? Why have the book open with a trip to Robinson Caruso Island?

I solved that mystery, easy, because I know how the publishing biz works. . The author took vacation to Robinson Caruso Island and put it in the book so she could use that vacation as a tax write-off. 

I’m a genius.

Anyway, it kept raining and as a result, many of my daily runs were washed out so I was sitting at home many mornings when usually I would be out, running. Maybe some of you know this already, but while I was sitting at home I discovered that, when it comes to a daily 5-mile run, it’s easier to not do it.

It’s sooooo much easier to stay home, make a second cup of tea and a third piece of toast, and lie on the couch with a book. And I like my daily run! But what is going on here is a conspiracy of mind and body. After a human hits the age of 40, all Nature wants is for you to die and make room for the faster, cuter, younger humans. So Nature works in concert with your brain to urge you to slow down, wear Capri pants/grow a goatee, and basically give up.

Ha! I’m on to you, Nature! It’s been gorgeous weather this past few days and I, for one, being that I am 25 years past the age of 40, am not going according to plan. So,

 You might wake up some mornin’
To the sound of something moving past your window in the wind
And if you’re quick enough to rise
You’ll catch a fleeting glimpse of someone’s fading shadow

Don’t be concerned, it’s not me chasing the bright elusive butterfly of love. It’s me plodding on, against every inclination to throw in the towel, giving Nature the old F U.

Last week you might remember that I put out a call for watercolor projects and thank you to those who have responded. We are gathering our reference material for exciting Pet Portraits  so I don’t have a new project for you this week. However, I went digging into my archives and I brought back a blast from the past that I did in 2013 that is still relevant today (because it’s a classic).

I start with a tea bag, for size reference:

Apply resist, let dry:

I think you know where this is going:

 

 

 

 

 

This (below) is a picture of my paint brush, which is a size 00, but I cut some of the bristles off to make it a -000:

What we have so far:

Now for a little sky:

 

Painting in the darkest bits for last:

Now that I’ve painted everything I need over the resist. . . 

. . . it’s time to peel it off:

 

I was painting Claude Monet’s garden in 2013 because I was working on my books about the 9 most thought-provoking gardens in the world and I thought I’d include Giverny. But Giverny is a BIG garden, one that deserved its own book, so I separated it from Gardens of Awe and Folly and made a little book all about it, all on its own.

My publisher passed on the project, so it’s been sitting in my closet for years. I looked at it today, first time since 2016, and I still like it. I might re-work it and get it out in time for the 100th anniversary of Monet’s death in 2024.

And now for the regularly scheduled blog:

I like to start our round up of the week’s news with something feel-good:

 

Thomas J. Barrack Jr., a close friend of former President and current Shitbag Donald Trump and one of his top 2016 campaign fund-raisers, was arrested in California on Tuesday on federal charges of failing to register as a foreign lobbyist, obstruction of justice, and lying to investigators.

The seven-count indictment accuses Barrack, 74, of using his access to Shitbag Trump to advance the foreign policy goals of the United Arab Emirates and then lying to federal agents about his activities during an interview in June 2019.

Federal prosecutors said  Barrack used his position as an adviser to Shitbag Trump’s campaign to publicly promote the Emirates’ agenda while soliciting direction, feedback, and talking points via a “burner phone” that gave Barrack a direct line to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Zayed, the de facto ruler of the Emirates.

Once Shitbag Trump was elected, Barrack invited senior Emirati officials to give him a “wish list” of foreign policy moves they wanted Washington to take within the first 100 days, first six months, first year, and by the end of Shitbag Trump’s term.

Barrack hoped that Shitbag Trump would name him to be a Middle East envoy or an ambassador to the Emirates, because Barrack could “deliver more” in such roles.

Although it’s been difficult to successfully prosecute foreign influence cases in the past, the Feds have pretty hard evidence in the form of emails between Barrack and bin Zayed’s underlings stating explicit quid-pro-quo dealings, They (the Feds) waited until Trump was out of office to arrest Barrack, taking away Shitbag Trump’s ability to pardon Barrack. 

This is my personal favorite part of the news cycle:

A 54-year-old Texas man, Alan Scott, who thought COVID-19 vaccines were “poison”, died from the virus last month and was buried by his wife and three sons on Father’s Day.

 

 

Blake Bargatze contracted COVID-19 and required a double lung transplant, and remains hospitalized. He has expressed his regret he did not get vaccinated for the virus, which has so far killed more than 607,000 Americans. 

Bargatze had told his parents he was putting off receiving a COVID-19 vaccine because he felt uncertain about its possible side effects.

“He wanted to wait a few years to see, you know, if there’s any side effects or anything from it,” said Paul Nuclo, his stepfather. “As soon as he got in the hospital, though, he said he wished he had gotten the vaccine.”

Bargatze was the only member of his family who passed on getting vaccinated. Once hospitalized, however, he asked to be inoculated. 

“The night before he was intubated, he wanted it,” his stepfather said. “So it was a little bit too late then.”

 

Linda Zuern lived in Bourne, Massachusetts. She was 70.

A MedFlight had to transport Zuern to a Boston hospital in early June. She fell into a coma and was placed on a ventilator until she died. She hadn’t gotten vaccinated against the virus, her friends said, because she was a moron.

Zuern opposed local vaccinations efforts, both as a member of the county government council, the Barnstable County Assembly of Delegates, and as a volunteer with a local conservative group called United Cape Patriots.

Last December, while serving her third term on the Assembly, she pushed for local doctors to use hydroxychloroquine to treat COVID-19 patients. Shitbag Trump had also promoted the same anti-malaria medication for that very purpose.

Last week, Zuern was one of four people who protested in Provincetown against the state’s VaxBus program. The bus is a mobile vaccination unit to help inoculate rural residents who might lack access to nearby health clinics.

On her social media, Zuern shared posts claiming that COVID-19 was a man-made virus used by “globalists” to push the “UN Agenda 2030” for a one-world government. She also shared posts pushing the QAnon conspiracy theory and  repeating the claim that voter fraud “stole” the 2020 election from Trump.

Fuck you, Linda Zuern.

 

Olivia Guidry, a registered nurse at Ochsner Lafayette General Medical Center in Louisiana, tweeted last year: “This vaccine has been released using recombinant DNA faster than any vaccine in the world. It manipulates your DNA at the tiniest molecular level. Do. Not. Get. It. It’s not safe. Am I the only one thinking they are trying to see how much they can control us? We are a straight-up social experiment.”

She was diagnosed with COVID-19 in early July, according to her sister Brittany Smith. Guidry came down with a high fever and had a seizure before being put into a medically induced coma last Thursday after showing signs of brain damage. She was treated with high doses of steroids and antibodies. She died on July 10.

Well, no one is controlling her now. (How do these kinds of idiots become nurses? Don’t you have learn about science and stuff, in a college, to get a nursing license, or is nursing the degree you get when you flunk out of Circus School?)

 

 

 

Now here’s Shitbag Trump weighing in on a vaccine for a disease that he and his party have called a “hoax”:

Democrats will laugh all the way to a 2022 victory:

Oh, wait…I think the Republicans are on to us:

 

 

 

 

On Fox, businesses that require employees to provide proof of vaccination, commonly referred to as a “vaccine passport,” have been slammed frequently. Tucker Carlson has called the idea of issuing vaccination passports the medical equivalent of “Jim Crow” segregationist laws. Another host compared the requirements to communist East Germany, and Laura Ingraham has falsely claimed that such programs are akin to tracking mechanisms.

However, an internal Fox email leaked last month spells out how Fox employees were instructed to enter their vaccination information into the company’s passport program called “FOX Clear Pass”.

 Employees who prove vaccination can then get a FOX Clear Pass, which allows them to bypass certain screening procedures. 

It’s not just the twerps at Fox News who are coming to Jesus:

Even Steve Scales, the biggest Trump ass-kisser in Congress (representing Louisiana’s First Congressional District) got the vaccine and people are suspicious:

 

 

Speaking of the other Big Lie of the GOP, let’s see how the losers who rioted for Shitbag Trump are doing:

A 32-page sentencing memo filed Thursday in defense of Paul Hodgkins references cancel culture, makes religious overtones and includes lengthy asides about the American Civil War. The memo describes Hodgkins’ role in the riots as minimal as it denotes his good character traits, describing him as an Eagle Scout who volunteers helping animals and people when he is not rioting in Washington, DC.

Hodgkins was never accused of assaulting anyone or damaging property so prosecutors said he deserves some leniency for taking responsibility almost immediately and pleading guilty to the obstruction charge, which carries a maximum 20-years prison sentence.

But they also noted how he boarded a bus in Tampa bound for a Jan. 6 Trump rally carrying rope, protective goggles, and latex gloves in a backpack — saying that these forethought demonstrated he came to Washington prepared for violence.

Still, the judge said that Hodgkins must suffer consequences for his actions and gave eight months.

EIGHT MONTHS.

Yeah, that sounds about white.

 

Then there’s this guy:

 

27-year old grocery store worker Brandon Fellows from Schenectady (a shithole town in upstate New York)  had previously been released on bail while facing a five-count indictment for his alleged role in the January 6 insurrection. 

He is accused of breaching the Capitol and entering the office of Sen. Jeffrey Merkley, where he was pictured propping his feet on the senator’s desk while smoking a joint.

The problem with Fellows is that while he is out on bail, he can’t stop telephoning his probation officer Kendra Rennie. He has sent her long rambling sexually explicit voicemails, including one  that he left in May in which he referenced “the size of his dick and the performance of his genitalia.”

He’s even called his probation officer’s mother, which officer Rennie says ” was intimidation. It was frightening. It made me nervous.”

For background, it should be understood that Fellows has previously told Bloomberg News that he had “no regrets” breaching the Capitol on January 6. He said: “I didn’t hurt anyone. I didn’t break anything. I did trespass though, I guess.”.

He goes on: “We were there for one common cause, which is making a statement that the government is crashing down on us,” he added.

So a judge heard testimony from the probation officer and said that Fellows’ repeated behavior could no longer “be given the benefit of the doubt.”HE BENEFIT OF THE DOUBT. (Yeah, that sounds about white.)

The judge also said that Fellows has previously demonstrated “sustained contempt” for the government, citing one incident in which Fellows sat through his initial Zoom hearing wearing sweatpants and eating his breakfast. Not to mention that Bloomberg News interview.

The judge said: “I am not convinced that you’re a danger to the community, but I do think you’re impulsive. I do think you’re headstrong, and you’re kind of gonna do what you’re gonna do. I tried really hard to avoid having to lock you up, but after months here, I don’t think I can be at all confident that there’s a condition or combination of conditions that you’ll adhere to.”

Fellows tried to worm out of taking responsibility by apologizing for his “annoying” behavior in court, adding: “I wouldn’t want to deal with me if I were on the opposing side.”

It didn’t work. Fellows is in jail, where he belongs, until he goes on trial.

ALL the January 6 rioters should be in jail, right now.

Like these guys:

 

Drug Enforcement Administration Special Agent Mark Ibrahim became the first member of federal law enforcement to be charged in connection with the insurrection at the Capitol on Jan. 6.

Ibrahim, of Orange County, California, is facing felony charges of entering a restricted building and area with a weapon, carrying a firearm on the grounds of the Capitol and lying to investigators from the Office of the Inspector General.

While the affidavit states Ibrahim didn’t actually enter the Capitol building, the affidavit includes a photo of Ibrahim inside the first set of fencing and barricades that surrounded the Capitol before the crowd broke through and alleges Ibrahim was on Capitol grounds that day.

Through his attorney, Ibrahim has insisted that he didn’t enter the Capitol and wasn’t involved with any violence. He also allegedly said he didn’t display his DEA badge or firearm during the day’s events; however, the affidavit detailing Ibrahim’s locations and actions that day shows him posing several times with his badge and weapon exposed.

Investigators found several photos of Ibrahim among the pro-Trump crowd at the Capitol on Jan. 6, including ones where he displayed both his DEA badge and firearm, which were taken at his request, according to the affidavit. In one of the photos, Ibrahim is posing in front of the Capitol holding a flag saying “Liberty or death” with his badge and firearm displayed on his hip.

Ibrahim also sent a photo of himself standing next to one of the barricades that had been broken through earlier to a WhatsApp group chat with at least five other law enforcement officers, according to the affidavit. It also mentioned that he later sent that same group chat a video of him on a lawn located above the Capitol’s visitor center.

During his interview with investigators, the affidavit states that Ibrahim admitted that he was at the Capitol with a friend who was there to document the event for the FBI. Ibrahim’s friend denied his story, saying he had no instruction from the agency.

The friend told the investigators that Ibrahim went to the rally to “promote himself” and wanted the rally to be “his stage for launching ‘Liberty Tavern’ political podcast and cigar brand,” according to the affidavit.

At the time of the event, Ibrahim was a “probationary employee” of the DEA, according to the Office of the Inspector General, and had, weeks before the insurrection, given the DEA notice of his intention to resign. He was on personal leave when he attended the rally on Jan. 6.

When Tucker Carlson of Fox News isn’t lying about the COVID vaccine, he’s lying about the January 6 insurrection. On Wednesday, July 21, Carlson did this:

Dunn’s response was immediate (I’ll type it below so you can read it):

Tonight Fox News allowed its host Tucker Carlson, who has not served a day in uniform, whether military or law enforcement, to criticize the heroism and service of African-American U. S. Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn. Our client has served 11 years in law enforcement and on January 6, 2021, fought against an insurrectionist violent crowd – no doubt many of them Carlson’s supporters – to protect the lives of our elected officials, including Vice President Pence.

Officer Dunn, who would lay down his life to protect a Member of Congress, regardless of being a Republican or Democrat, will testify next Tuesday before the Hose Select Committee investigating the events of the insurrection. Frankly, the last thing Carlson wants is for the truth to emerge of what happened that day and why.

I did not know this until now, that Tucker Carlson’s son, Buckley, works for Rep. Jim Banks, a rabid Trumper from Indiana. Banks is a major asshole, and I will elaborate next week because we have to wrap this shit up.

This is the guy who voted to deny communion to President Biden because of his support for a woman’s right to make her own health care choices when it comes to pregnancy:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sorry, Dear Readers for the delay in today’s blog. Big WiFi problems. Huge. sigh.

Have a great weekend, everyone. WiFi willing, I’ll be back next week.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Every now and then I need proof that I am still the universe’s favorite person.

Dear Reader Jeanie left a comment a few weeks ago about the Blue Jays of Michigan being very stingy with their molting feathers, resulting in the sad fact that she has never had the joy of finding a Blue Jay feather in the grass on a Summer day. So I ascended to my treasury in the north wing of the manor and unlocked my vault and withdrew three Blue Jay feathers from my vast collection — two tail feathers and a primary covert wing feather —  and sent them off to her. 

Why three feathers? No special reason other than I’m human and the human brain seem to have an affinity for things that come in three’s. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness…past, present, future…un, deux, trois… 

So the next day, after I had sent those three feathers off to the wilds of Michigan, I was walking down our street early in the morning and, in the space of a few minutes, three beautiful Blue Jay feathers presented themselves to me, one after the other:

So that there is all the proof I need to remember that the universe is looking out for me, just me in particular, because it loves me and wants me to be happy.

About a week later I was doing my run about two miles from my house and I was remembering my Blue Jay feather obsession and my recent luck finding three in one day and I got to thinking that it was strange that I’ve only found Blue Jay feathers close to my house. “I wonder”, I said to myself, “if  the world is actually lousy with Blue Jay feathers all over the place but I only perceive them in the places close to home where I am accustomed to seeing them.” And no sooner had that thought taken shape in my mind when I glanced over at a tree to my left and there, in its shade, was this:

I’m going to start holding World Peace in my mind and see if the universe can’t make that happen for me, its favorite person.

From the sublime to the ridiculous, let’s talk about ice cube trays. For a long time I have disliked the ice cube trays that are currently engaged in the task of providing us with cooling solids for our adult beverages so last week, when my self-esteem was at an all-time high because of all the positive reinforcement I’ve been getting from the universe, I spent five minutes googling Best Ice Cube Tray and reading the reviews and I bought us some new ice cube trays. The ice cube trays arrived via UPS on Friday and the ice cubes they make are really swell.

I know you’re really happy for me and this sudden improvement in my quality of life but wait, there’s more. These ice cube trays think so highly of themselves that they came with a User Manual:

If you want to mildly amuse yourself, imagine that you’re the guy in charge of writing the User Manual for other items in your house. Wash cloths: For best results use with soap and water, but not in that order.  Spoons: Good for soup, steak not so much.  Flip flops: They go on your FEET, OK? Your FEET.  Pencils: Step one, apply pointy end to paper. Step two, push.

You know who would end a User Manual for an ice cube tray?  My cat Bibs. Bibs is seriously a moron. He’s been our cat for 16 years and he still hasn’t figured out the we are not going to kill him. He’ll let us scratch his chin, but get any closer and he’s terrified. He also hasn’t figured out that Taffy is not that crazy about him even though he never lets Taffy out of his sight. Here they are, in typical Bibs-pain-in-the-ass-style napping together on the breakfast patio:

 

 

 

Now for the watercolor idea I have that I teased last week. I have not picked up a paint brush since I finished the last of the Stromness Rock pet portraits, and I miss those blog posts where we all got together and watched paint dry. So, if you would like to gift a friend a pet portrait for Hannukah or mas or Kwaanza or Choesoek or Solstice, whatever, here’s your chance. I will paint it. We all like watching paint dry, right? 

Pet bunny, pet tarantula, or pet miniature goat are all OK. But let’s say you want to gift someone with a portrait of their beach house; I could do one of those. Dead poet portrait? I’ve done Gerard Manley Hopkins; I’m sure I could do any of the Romantics.  Still life with tea cup? Sure. Still life with dead poet? Even better. Give me subject matter, Dear Readers, and let’s get to watercoloring.

Are you in?

 ___________________________

OK, now it’s time for the news.

Trump, speaking last Sunday, July 11, on “Sunday Morning Futures with Maria Bartiromo” on the Fox News Channel, said the Capitol rioters of Jan. 6 were patriots, that some of them were unjustly arrested and jailed, and that a woman who was shot and killed by law enforcement during the insurrection was a great hero.“The crowd was unbelievable and I mentioned the word ‘love,’ the love in the air, I’ve never seen anything like it,” he said of his rally on the Ellipse. Speaking about those who rioted at the Capitol, Trump said: “These were peaceful people, these were great people.”

He added: “Too much spirit and faith and love, there was such love at that rally, you had over a million people,” inflating the size of his rally crowd. (Fact check: the permit for the rally stated that the organizers of the “Save America Rally” expected only 10,000 people; press coverage from the day says that there were “thousands”.)

Referring to his remarks to the crowd before they stormed the Capitol as “a very mild-mannered speech,” Trump also suggested that the blame for any violence that day could be placed on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and other Democrats because they didn’t take the potential for violence seriously.

“They are the ones that were responsible,” he said.

Trump went on to praise Babbitt, a California-based Air Force veteran and conspiracy theorist  as an “innocent, wonderful, incredible woman.”  He then, without a shred of evidence, stated that Babbitt, who was shot by a member of the U.S. Capitol Police while storming Congress, was instead killed by the “head of security” for a top Democrat. “I will tell you they know who shot Ashli Babbitt,” Trump said, claiming the person’s identity is being protected, but the truth is “going to come out.” 

 

Let’s check in with some of those “great” people at Trump’s insurrection. 

This one is my Traitor of the Week:

Pauline Bauer, a Pennsylvania pizzeria owner, is accused of multiple counts of violent entry, disruptive conduct, and obstruction of Congress after she allegedly broke into the Capitol on Jan. 6. Prosecutors allege that Bauer tried organizing buses to transport people to D.C. for a rally that preceded the riot, and that while in the Capitol rotunda she was recorded on video telling a police officer to “bring Nancy Pelosi out here now… we want to hang that fucking bitch”

But in what experts describe as an inadvisable legal strategy, Bauer has demanded to represent herself in court, appeared to threaten a court clerk with prison time, and declared herself a “self-governed individual” with special legal privileges and has filed court documents claiming to be a divinely empowered entity immune from laws.

As a divinely empowered entity, Bauer does not simply appear in court, as she clarified during a June 11 proceeding via Zoom. “I am here by special divine appearance, a living soul,” she told a judge that day, while stating that she did not want an attorney.

“I do not stand under the law,” she said. “Under Genesis 1, God gave man dominion over the law.”

In a document filed last week, Bauer listed herself as a “flesh and blood person” along with a series of strange alternative spellings of her name in a document that she (incorrectly) claimed freed her from some government control.

Sovereign citizens will often refer to themselves as “flesh and blood’ people because they have this longstanding belief that the government has created artificial versions of them for various nefarious purposes. 

In another new filling, Bauer offered a document that “serves as Proof that my living DNA existed on this Land before there was a UNITED STATES of America or Any STATE Thereof.” The attached document was a family tree showing what Bauer said were ancestors born in Virginia and Pennsylvania before 1776. Even if accurate, this has no bearing on U.S. law.

 

 

Excerpts from a new book coming out about the Trump  administration, called “I Alone Can Fix It: Donald J. Trump’s Catastrophic Final Year.” One tidbit that got a lot of attention was about Army Mark General Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who you might remember was the guy in camouflage who went to Lafayette Square for Trump’s bible-toting photo-opt last year during the George Floyd protests:

Miller later apologized on TV and to the press, for his participation in the event because it was a political stunt and the American military does not do politics.

Well. This same General Milley, according to this new book, in the final months of Trump’s one term in office, was strategizing with other White House personnel  how to guard against a coup attempt by Trump or those around him.

 Trump, in a lengthy, insult-laden statement lashing out at Milley over a variety of grievances, said he “never threatened, or spoke about, to anyone, a coup of our Government.”

Yes, it’s true, it’s not a nightmare, THIS guy used to be the president.

 

 

I only have the energy to deal with one asshole Republican at a time, so all I can do about the rest of them is hope that I get the chance one day to spit on their grave.

And here’s a Trump footnote:

 

 

You know, I think this might be the future of the USA:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jesus Christ, will you look at the time. 

Have a great weekend, everyone. Keep your eyes and heart open for the Blue Jay feather of happiness to appear in your life and if there aren’t ay Blue Jays where you live, then keep alive for those little moments that are mood-altering, mind-bending, and magic-making. Or just enjoy a stonking big G&T with your cat. Same thing. 

 

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Teddy was not amused.  Tropical Storm Elsa dropped by late Thursday afternoon, giving us high winds and monsoon rain all through the night. By Friday morning, we were looking at the back end of the bad weather and all we had to do was sit tight until noon and the sun would be shining again.

We were sitting down to the computer on Friday morning, at 7:54 AM to be exact, when all he lights went out. Then we heard a loud *pop* down the street and we knew the damn transformer had blown…again. Last August Tropical Storm Isaias blew in from the west coast of Africa and knocked out power here on the north shore of Long Island for three days.

 

No, Isaias wasn’t the one that famously got Trump’s Sharpie; that was Hurricane Dorian, in 2019, when Trump tweeted that “In addition to Florida—South Carolina, North Carolina, Georgia, and Alabama, will most likely be hit (much) harder than anticipated.”

The Alabama part of this was untrue, and Birmingham (Alabama’s capital city) National Weather Service  immediately corrected the record, operating under the understandable assumption that Alabamians receiving accurate information about a looming natural disaster mattered more than the president’s pride. Trump, unaccustomed to correction, disagreed. So, in the Sharpie incident that will live in infamy, he presented an official NOAA map that had clearly been altered with a Sharpie (Trump’s favorite writing instrument), doctored with black ink to make the hurricane appear to be headed toward Alabama.

Trump was asked by a reporter whether the black line over Alabama was made with a permanent marker.

“I don’t know. I don’t know. I don’t know,” Trump replied.

Bloomberg News was the first to report that Trump marked up the map with Sharpie. ABC, CNN, NBC, NPR, etc. all piled on, and the story went on for days that Trump thought he could get away with drawing a new hurricane trajectory on the NOAA map and get away with it…because he’s too stupid to understand that not everyone is as stupid as he is. Sometimes I forget what it was like to have a moron for a president, and then a little tropical storm comes to town and reminds me.

But I digress. So there we were, me, Teddy, Kimmy, etc., stuck at home with no power. We were lucky that the blackout didn’t last three days — the electricity came back on at 5:13 PM. So that is why we couldn’t meet up like usual on Friday: the wind blew my blog away.

And then we had WiFi trouble and then it was cocktail time and then it was Saturday morning and here it is, Saturday afternoon and I’m back, catching you up on the latest news and wonders of life. Thank you for hanging in there!

Speaking of my cats, the most news-worthy kitty of the week was the black moggy named Binx:

86 people are confirmed dead from the collapse of the Surfside condo with 43 still unaccounted for, which is a heartbreaking loss; but the discovery of this little cat has given the residents and responders a little miracle to feel good about.

Good job, little buddy. Thank you.

I found out last week that, on order to “celebrate” the 4th of July, the birthday of our nation’s founding as an independent country, the Republican owner, David Green, of the privately-owned crafts store Hobby Lobby decided to pervert the holiday:

This is a picture of the full-page “ads” he printed:

Hobby Lobby, with more than 900 stores, is the largest privately owned arts-and-crafts retailer in the world with over 43,000 employees and operating in forty-seven states. The owner, David Green, is a major financial supporter of Evangelical organizations in the United States and funded the Museum of the Bible in Washington, D.C.

In the devastating Burwell v. Hobby Lobby ruling, on June 30, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court allowed certain bosses to block their employees’ access to birth control. The decision on this Supreme Court birth control case applied to more than half of all U.S. workers — that’s the tens of millions of workers at companies in which five or fewer people own more than 50%.

Two privately owned companies brought the case: cabinet manufacturer Conestoga Wood Specialties, and the Hobby Lobby national chain of craft stores, which employs 28,000.

Don’t buy your crafts supplies from Hobby Lobby, is what I’m saying. 

And Franklin Graham, the sone of famous preacher Billy Graham, piped up to support Hobby Lobby: 

Franklin Graham runs a “ministry” that is worth around $754 million, and he himself has a net worth of $10 million, so yeah, the Jesus con has been pretty good to Frankie.

I forgot that Remington Arms, the firearms manufacturer, filed for bankruptcy last year, but even in their diminished state they can still be one of the the biggest assholes in America: 

Remington Arms, the executives of Remington Arms, and the lawyers for Remington Arms suck. BTW, the caption of that cartoon above is Filet Minion, so even the “jokes” of Remington Arms suck.

Donald Trump’s CFO is still indicted for tax fraud, so the shit bag is going around to his little rallies claiming that it’s all just a witch hunt:

 

To distract his supporters and the news media from the open-and-shut case that the New York prosecutors have against Trump Inc., Donald filed a lawsuit to sue Facebook and Twitter , who have permanently banned Trump from their platforms, for First Amendment infringement: 

Oh, wait. It’s not just a distraction — it’s another con!! This is a green shot of Trump’s website:

 

 

 

 

 

 

The conservative wing nuts had a convention (CPAC) this past week and the big story is. . .

At the CPAC, cards were handed out that gave a 7-step plan to re-instate Trump as president. 

 

Here’s the plan:  Oust House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and install Donald Trump in her place.

Donald Trump as Speaker would then call for a vote to impeach, charge, and remove “imposters” President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.

As the Speaker of the House, Trump is third in the line of presidential succession, and he would then take up the presidency.

The plan hinges upon Republicans regaining control of the House, which they plan to do by pulling back the curtain on “the horror show” of the Democrat Party, causing groups such as the Black Caucus to “flip” sides.

The card links to a website that claims to have proof connecting the Democrat party to satanic sacrifices.

A recent study found that around a quarter of Republicans believe that Satan-worshiping pedophiles control the US government.

I don’t have to tell you that there are a lot of crazy, crazy  people in America.

Now for some good news:

Rudy set up a crowd-funding site where people can give him money for the court cases he wants to bring against those who have suspended his law licenses, with a gold of raising $5 million. 

After a week, someone estimated that at the rate that contributions were trickling in with only 49 days left, that he might be able to scrounge up $100,000.

So . . .

Meanwhile, First Lady Jill Biden sent Donald an email, asking him to come pick up the trash he left in the White Hose residence: 

 

 

 

 

This is a good time to remember how Trump supporters, and their Republican congressional enablers, almost started another civil war on January 6 this year:

 

 

About this (above). That’s Republican representative Mo Brooks (from Alabama), who has asked to be dismissed from a federal lawsuit alleging that he incited the Jan. 6 mob assault on the U.S. Capitol, claiming that he can’t be held liable because he was acting as a federal employee while challenging the 2020 election results in a fiery speech just before the riot began.

In his filing Friday, Brooks invoked a 1988 law that protects federal employees from personal liability while acting within the scope of their office or employment. He argued that his speech, tweets and related conduct “were indisputably made in the context of and preparation for” a joint session of Congress on Jan. 6 to confirm the results of the presidential election.

What Brooks said was: “Today is the day American patriots start taking down names,” Brooks said, echoing Trump’s unfounded claims that the election was rigged. Brooks told people in the crowd that they were victims of a historic theft and asked whether they were ready to sacrifice their lives for their country.

So, yeah, just normal everyday government employee stuff.

I’m surprised that Brooks didn’t go with the “Riot? What Riot?” defense made popular by Donald Trump, also known as TFG, The Former Guy on Twitter:

You never know. It might work. The insurrectionists seem to have a lot of friends in Congress:

But nobody likes this guy:

Or these two MAGAts:

 

 

 

It will take a long time for the scum Trump supporters who are charged  for the Jan. 6 insurrection to all get what’s coming for them, but the great thing about capitalism is that you can get results a lot faster than the court system:

It’s a long statement, but the upshot is that Toyota came around really fast:

Top Cat and I have a Toyota, which I will from now on refer to as the Suck It Insurectionistsmobile.

Or maybe we’ll just call it “the car”.

And that’s the news for this week, Dear Readers. 

Next week I want to discuss  with you a change in the gist of this blog, to get back to the old days when I used to do a lot of watercolor here and less bitching about the moons I am forced to share my country with. I’ll be asking for you input, but until then, let’s relax and be glad that we don’t live in Denmark:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have a great weekend, Dear Ones. Stay safe from hurricanes and blackouts, avoid all Republicans, give a wide berth to anyone claiming that America is and always was a Christian country, and for god’s sake stay away from Danish pizza.

 

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July 2020 might be my favorite month of the past few  years but no, it’s not because of the weather which, frankly, has been a fright.

Portland, Oregon hit an all-time high of 112 degrees Fahrenheit (44.4 Celsius) on June 27. That broke a record of 108 F set just a day earlier. Both days topped the previous record of 107 F, reached in 1981 and 1965.

Farther north, the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport hit 104 F  (40 C) a new all-time high that edged out the area’s previous record of 103 F, set in 2009.

The sweltering weather appears to be part of a broader climate change trend. The Pacific Northwest’s average temperature has warmed more than 2 F compared with a century ago, with most of that change in the last 40 years.

The number of extreme heat days has increased in this century: in 1940 Portland had only about 10 days per year when the daily high temperature topped 90 F. By 2020, that number was at about 20 days per year. The projected change, by the middle of the century is for the region to have 40 days per year with temperatures above 90 degrees.

 

 

 

 

It was 97 degrees here on the north shore of Long Island last week (36 C) and although that might not seem a lot to an Australian, to me it was hot enough that I’d take a cold shower fully clothed several times a day. We don’t have AC here at Too Many Cats Manor because this 100-year old house holds on to Winter in its bones for most of the year so, for the week or two that the heat becomes unbearable, we just suffer. And lying on the den couch in soaking wet clothes with a fan pointed directly at you is actually pretty effective in beating the heat. But it did make me wonder how on Earth I could stand it if it got 10 degrees hotter. Portland, Oregon, you have my respect.

Today it is rainy and cool — in the 70s (21 – 23 C)  — and I am sitting here with a sweater on and ruing a promise I made in the heat of the moment. Last weekend at a get-together with friends and friends of friends, friends of friends were telling us about the house they are building in Dallas, Texas. They are moving next month and the wife of the pair turned to me and said, “I hear you do cat rescue.”

Long story short, I am now in charge of two small feral cat colonies that this woman has been feeding for several years. The cats live in a town that is five miles from my house, in an alley that is home to those places where where junk cars are towed, and I will be giving them breakfast and dinner 7 days a week. 

I don’t really want the job but there is no one else who was willing to take the responsibility. The guys at the car crash places give the cats shelter, and an old guy who used to work there (sadly, now deceased)  is the one who started the colonies and he built cute little huts where their food is protected from rain and snow, and the cats look clean and plump and have all been trapped/neutered/released (ears clipped) so it’s they are well-cared for. But that will be me, in freezing rain and blistering heat and dark of night traipsing over there with bottles of water and two kinds of wet and dry food until they, or I, die. Sometimes I wish I wasn’t such a fucking sweetheart of a human being.

But that hasn’t changed the fact that July 2020 is my favorite month of the past few years because raise high the roof beam, sound the trumpets, come all ye faithful and hear the glad tidings of comfort and joy:

 

The indictment charges the Trump Organization, Trump Payroll Corporation, and Allen Weisselberg. Prosecutors allege a 15-year tax scheme, with 15 felony counts, charging

Mr. Weisselberg for failure to pay taxes on valuable benefits he and his family received from Trump, such as tens of thousands of dollars in private school tuition for one of Mr. Weisselberg’s grandchildren, a rent-free apartment on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, and leased Mercedes-Benz vehicles. Mr. Weisselberg’s wife also received her own leased Mercedes.

Weisselberg faces grand larceny, tax fraud scheme to defraud, conspiracy, falsifying business records.

Assistant District Attorney Carey Dunne said, “As spelled out in the indictment, this was a 15-year long tax fraud scheme…it was orchestrated by the most senior execs who were financially benefitting themselves and others…CFO avoided taxes on 1.7 million in income…”

The prosecutors are also working with lawyers from the office of the New York State attorney general, Letitia James, investigating whether the Trump Organization failed to pay payroll taxes on what should have been taxable income and whether Mr. Trump and the Trump Organization manipulated property values to obtain loans and tax benefits,  among other potential financial crimes

 

 

 

Just in case you are thinking that ppppffffttttt, a few tax-dodging charges are small potatoes, here’s the opinion of Preet Bharara, the former federal prosecutor who served as the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York from 2009 to 2017, who was one of the nation’s most aggressive and outspoken prosecutors of public corruption and Wall Street crime during his tenure.

Daniel Shaviro (above), one of the foremost authorities on taxation, is the Wayne Perry Professor of Taxation at New York University Law School where his research focuses on tax policy and distributive justice. So I’m going to trust these guys and I invite you to join me in popping open a bottle of pre-celebratory champagne tonight to toast the demise of Trump and his spawn.

Meanwhile, the Democratic mayor of Albuquerque, New Mexico wants to have a word with the soon-to-be bankrupt kaput Trump:

Mayor Tim Keller used to be the New Mexico State Auditor, so he’s a real stickler when it comes to tax dollar expenditures, and he’ll be in office at least util 2022, so you know that he’s not going to let Turmp slide on this debt. 

Speaking of tenacious Democrats, let’s see what Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is doing:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Speaking of Deep Shit, Trump gave a rally in Ohio on June 26 :

I almost forgot that Trump had a birthday on June 14:

And speaking of Melanoma Trump, she’s pissed that Jill Biden got a cover of vogue Magazine, something that Melanoma was never offered ins spite of her being a “model” and all . . . 

 

Whore, Republican. . . sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference:

In case you can’t read the caption, here’s the story: Edward Snodgrass, a Republican trustee for Porter County, Ohio, admitted to forging his dead father’s signature on an absentee ballot, then voting again as himself. “I was simply trying to execute a dying man’s wishes,” Snodgrass said, and claims that it’s wrong to characterize what he did as “Trump voter fraud.”

In an interview with NBC News, Edward Snodgrass said he made “an honest error” while struggling to take care of his dying father, who had advanced Parkinson’s disease. He said he had power of attorney for several years and because his dad had broken his right arm he’d already been “signing for him.” He said his dad had requested the absentee ballot.

Snodgrass is due back in court July 9 where, according to a plea agreement, he is expected to plead guilty to a reduced charge of falsification and receive a sentence of three days in jail and a $500 fine.

Initially charged with illegal voting, which is a fourth-degree felony, Snodgrass could have faced a prison sentence of six or more months along with a $5,000 fine had he not agreed to a deal.

In other MAGAt news:

 

 

I’ve written about Anna Morgan-LLoyd before, the rioter who got off on probation for her part in the January 6 insurrection because she watched Schindler’s List and was educated. Well, as soon as the judge let her off she went on Fox News (note the quotes around the word RIOT):

The interview comes a day after Morgan-Lloyd said in court that she felt ashamed for the “savage display of violence” on Jan. 6.

She pleaded guilty to parading, demonstrating, or picketing in a Capitol building — a federal misdemeanor. During her sentencing, U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth credited Morgan-Lloyd’s show of remorse in court and said he’d cut her “a break” in his  sentence of three years probation that avoided time in prison.

On Fox, Morgan-Lloyd minimized the deadly attack when asked by Fox host Laura Ingraham whether she considers that day to be an “insurrection.”

“I can only talk about the area I was in, and I don’t believe it,” Morgan-Lloyd, 49, said. “But as I said, that’s only from the area I was at in the Capitol. People were not breaking the windows. We see nothing.”

Jesus, MAGAts are so damn stupid.

From now on, any MAGAt’s sweetheart probation should include a ban from going on Fox TV to downplay the “riot” of January 6, and give Fox the chance to describe the plea deal as “charges fall apart”.


 

 

 

 

And now for something really important:

Prince William and Prince Harry were reunited on July 1 to unveil a statue of their late mother, Princess Diana, on what would have been her 60th birthday.

The statue is located in the sunken garden at Kensington Palace in London.

 

 

OK, I love the inspiration. But that statue is F U G L Y. It is hideous. Is it so hard to get a likeness of a person in bronze? Because this doesn’t even come close.I remember how beautiful and chic Diana was, and I, for one, am disappointed, and I can only console myself with some memes and then, some cats.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have a great weekend, everyone. It’s been a long time, and a lot of gas lighting, and far too much leniency and forgiveness, but it’s time, Dear Ones, it’s time to celebrate the Beginning of the End. It’s going to happen. I feel it in my soul, it’s going to happen: The End of the Trump Era is nigh.

Now go and be happy!

XXOO 

 

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