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Posted by on Feb 1, 2017 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 2 comments

Democrats Offer the Right Message, but Have the Wrong Messenger

 

 

Last night, Rep. Nancy Pelosi held a nationally-televised “Town Hall Meeting.”

Overnight television ratings were’t available at the time of this writing.  However, one presumes the hour-long Q & A session with the House Minority Leader taking center stage probably drew a few million voters.  It’s also a valid guess that just about everyone tuning in to watch Pelosi were Democratic loyalists, and/or voters repelled by President Trump.  It’s highly doubtful that many independents or Republicans watched the telecast.  I’d even go so far as to say the number of opinions swayed by Pelosi’s remarks during the town hall meeting could probably fit into a telephone booth, assuming there were still any phone booths around, which precisely makes my point.

This begs the question all Democrats should be asking, namely — what in the hell was Nancy Pelosi doing on that stage?

Incredibly, the Democrats never seem to learn the lessons of history, even when it’s a hard reality to face and a bitter pill to swallow.  Despite Republicans offering a dreadfully-flawed candidate at the top of their party ticket stained by the highest negatives in American political history, Democrats still got whipped in the election — at every level.  Republicans won the presidency, the House, the Senate, plus an overwhelming number of gubernatorial slots and state legislatures.  Democrats, who spent just as much money nationally as the Republicans (arguably more, depending on metrics), were humiliated.

Democrat defeats weren’t due to spouting the wrong message.  Not at all.  On virtually every issue, Democrats enjoy the majority support.  Do Americans favor raising the minimum wage?  Check.  Do Americans favor responsible gun legislation?  Check.  Do Americans believe in climate change?  Check.  Do Americans want to improve our national infrastructure?  Check.  Do Americans want to protect a woman’s right to chose?  Check.  On nearly every issue, the Democrat message wins the hearts and minds of most people.  Accordingly, since the message wins the popularity contest (and by an overwhelming majority on some issues), the explanation for disproportionate losses must lie elsewhere (yes, gerrymandering has a lot to do with it).

Here’s a novel thought:  Perhaps it’s the messenger.

Given the mass rebuke of Democratic candidates across the board, in all regions of the country, one might have expected plenty of heads to roll after the disaster.  Certainly, it seemed reasonable to expect Democratic Party leadership to gracefully step aside and allow a younger, more energetic crowd with new ideas — not only about how to govern but how to campaign — to step forward and carry the progressive torch.  But instead, Democrats gave virtually all its leaders a contract extension.

Using a sporting comparison, there’s a reason why the NFL’s Jacksonville Jaguars fired the entire coaching staff after the team finished 3-11 last season.  Even though they’re all probably good and decent people, each talented and knowledgeable in his own right, the ax fell because coaches failed to accomplish their objectives.  Not only did they fail to win, they also lost badly.  Yet, Democrats continue to slumber blindly onward with the same impotent leadership, oblivious to how much of the country sees them.

One of the very first acts by Democrats who assembled in the new congress in early 2017 was to re-elect Nancy Pelosi to what amounts to the de facto face of the party, along with Chuck Schumer, her counterpart in the U.S. Senate.  One might argue there’s justification for choosing Pelosi (and Schumer) and allowing them to continue in their leadership posts.  After all, congressional staffs are immensely critical in the legislative process and it would be hard to argue there are better staffs than Pelosi’s and Schumer’s.  There’s also long traditions in congress, which reward seniority.  Political insurrections might happen in some elections, but they aren’t common on Capital Hill.

Yet, television and town halls require a completely different skill set than the wonkish acts of governance.  If President Trump’s election victory teaches us anything — it’s that we’ve now rocketed into a completely new age of political marketing and showmanship.  Voters aren’t interested much in policy details and studies, nor even facts.  I know, that’s a frightening conclusion.  But no once can refute it.  Facts don’t matter.  Instead, they want a circus.  So, Democrats need to give it to them — wild tigers, elephants, trapeze artists, and even clowns.  That’s how to create the Big Tent and win election victories.

Fortunately, Democrats have a number of outstanding ringmasters ready and eager to spread the progressive message.  Instead of Nancy Pelosi, Democrats would have been advised to offer  the town hall spot to Sen. Al Franken, or Rep. Tulsi Gabbard, or Sen. Amy Klobuchar, or even Sen. Cory Booker (despite his inexplicable vote against allowing pharmaceuticals into the United States from Canada, which angered many on the Left).  Want to pick a better national spokesperson for the party then Pelosi?  Here’s how to do that:  Pick up the congressional phone book, open it up to any page, and point to any name.  It’s that bad.  It’s that dire.

To be fair, Pelosi is right on most issues that matter.  She was way ahead of the rest of the country on civil rights.  She’s also done admirable work in the past and can continue to be a political force.  Yet, when picking a champion for change, it’s baffling why someone was selected who has such high negatives.  Pelosi is the anti-populist.  You know it’s “game over,” when Sen. Mitch McConnell is out-polling the Democratic Minority Leader in national polls.  Why even bother holding a town hall if it’s going to be fronted by someone considered by a majority of voters to be a pariah?  It’s self-defeating.

Still, the Democrats not only refuse to clean house.  They won’t even look at themselves in the mirror.  Even with what would seem to be overwhelming advantages coming up in the next election (2018) given the chaos we’ve witnessed in recent weeks, Democrats could very well blow it again unless some key lessons are learned from recent history.

Nancy Pelosi’s mystifying showing at a town hall meeting might not seem like a very big deal in the grander scheme of bigger issues.  Yet the truth is, it’s yet another painful indication that Democrats remain completely oblivious to how they’re perceived and what’s going on across America.

 

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Posted by on Jan 26, 2017 in Blog, Essays, Las Vegas, Politics, Travel | 1 comment

How You Can Help Save and Protect Red Rock Canyon

 

 

I woke up this morning to the majesty of contrasts that is the Red Rock Canyon National Conservation Area, better known simply as “Red Rock Canyon.”  Everything within sight, from the desert cactus to mountain pines, was covered in white snow.

Most Las Vegas visitors, and even many locals, may not know about the natural splendor nestled in the mountains due west of The Strip just a half-hour drive away.  Red Rock is an oasis for the mind and a vacation for the soul.  It seems light years apart from the fabricated latticework of 1.5 million people, continuing to crawl with an alarming expansion beyond the sustainable resources necessary to ensure a healthy balance between what we build and the natural world around it which cradles our city like a protective glove.

Red Rock is a vast “pause button,” ready to be hit any time, a temporary escape to a quiet place still mostly unspoiled by sprawling urbanization, except for a few roads and the occasional traffic sign.  In a city blanketed with casinos, cookie-cutter tract homes, and look-a-like strip malls, Red Rock has become our common escape, even if just for a few fleeting seconds with an affectionate gaze in the westward direction of the snow-capped mountains.  Like a seductive temptress, we long for our next encounter with beauty.

Note:  Here’s a short article I wrote last year about my hike in the canyon, along with several photos. [CLICK HERE]

Sadly, each time I’ve driven into Red Rock in recent years, commercial development looks to be creeping closer and closer to the park.  Now, when driving up Charleston Blvd., which eventually leads directly into the heart of Red Rock Canyon, it’s shocking and sad to see the extent to which homes and shopping centers have stretched to the valley’s outer boundaries and very nearly into the canyon area itself, which is now seriously threatened.  Towards the north, specifically the Lone Mountain area, commercial and industrial development has been even more aggressive.  Lone Mountain was once on the outer fringes of the west side of Las Vegas.  Now, it’s been engulfed by a freeway, thousands of new homes, and a monochrome of dust and blowing debris which seems to swirl around constantly.

South of the Red Rock area, there’s a controversial proposal by developer Jim Rhodes to convert prime land currently occupied by a gypsum mine to construct more than 5,000 additional homes, which is likely to bring in another 10,000 cars and unforeseen disturbances to the area, such as noise and pollution.  A city where air quality is marginal at best and often covered in a thick haze on bad days chokes on its own exhaust fumes.

A few nights ago, a meeting was held here in Las Vegas where many critical issues important to our region were discussed.  I was stirred into action by the presentation of Justin Jones, who’s a board member of the organization known as Save Red Rock.  I learned that this non-profit is fighting to protect one of Las Vega’s last natural resources, not just for us, but for future generations.  Jones stated if we don’t take action now, it might be too late in the future.  He also noted that big-money developers have filed a lawsuit against Save Red Rock, purely in an effort to silence opposition, thus squashing citizen advocacy and democracy.  Fortunately, many people with the local community, Democrats and Republicans alike, are now speaking out and making their voices heard.  But that might not be enough given the power of developers who look towards Red Rock as a potential piggy bank.

We aren’t opposed to responsible development.  Indeed, there are plenty of attractive neighborhoods in our city where new homes can be built and new businesses can be created.  That’s something every community needs to remain vibrant  In fact, many established parts of Las Vegas are desperate for investment of this kind, and even offer generous tax incentives.  So, why allow unbridled expansion into one of the most gorgeous areas of Southern Nevada, when so many other opportunities exist for local development and revitalization?

If you’re interested in learning more, please visit the website SAVEREDROCK.ORG.  There’s also a petition you can sign for an upcoming public hearing with country commissioners (in February), which will show your support for protecting the natural majesty of this critically important and precious public recreation area.  Consider signing the PETITION HERE.

Once Red Rock is gone, it’s lost forever.  We must act now.  Please help and also tell your friends and neighbors.  We need your voice, your signature, your support, and most of all your action.  Please do it now.

 

READ THE FACEBOOK PAGE, with comments, HERE.

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Posted by on Jan 23, 2017 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 1 comment

The United States of Jesusville

 

 

Last week’s presidential inauguration lasted a relatively brisk 90 minutes.  About half of the official swearing-in ceremony was comprised of speeches.  The other half was filled with lively music and assorted patriotic fanfare.

Lost in the controversial aftermath of political protests and petty partisan bickering over attendance figures on the mall that day, was the disturbing amount of time given to religion.  The nation’s biggest platform was frequently turned over to religious authorities.  Prayers dominated the order of the day.  In fact, prayers accounted for nearly as much stage time as President Trump’s much-anticipated inaugural address.  There was the actual swearing in process also, buttressed by not just one, but two versions of The Holy Bible.  A copy of Trump’s own The Art of the Deal was reportedly ready on stand by.

For we secularists, calls for public prayer are typically but a minor annoyance.  Most of us do respect the rights of others to pray and/or show other outward signs of their faith.  We stand quietly while others choose to worship, even though we believe such rituals make about as much sense as praying to the Easter Bunny.  Everyone, everywhere should be afforded the right to demonstrate their beliefs (including we), both in private and public.  However, our patience does get tested.  Our tolerance is abused.  While we’re perfectly willing to pretend-pray and play along, we don’t like getting smashed over the head by the imposition of a pious religious order.  That’s precisely what happened in Washington last Friday.

President Trump’s 17-minute inauguration address was framed by six — count ’em SIX — prayers.  Three prayers were held at the beginning of the ceremony [Pastor Paula White,  who is Trump’s “spiritual adviser,” followed immediately by Cardinal Timothy Dolan, and then Rev. Franklin Graham].  That was followed by three more prayers near the end [Rabbi Marvin Hier, Bishop Wayne T. Jackson, and Rev. Sam Rodriguez].  All that was missing was the Little Drummer Boy and a partridge in a pear tree affixed to a giant cross that screams “Jesus Saves.”

Usually, non-denominational religious rituals include a benediction from each of the so-called “Big Three” — which is Christianity, Judaism, and Islam.  But this year, Christians covered the point spread and smashed the over easier than the New England Patriots in the championship game.  At Trump’s inaugural, there were five Christians and one Jew upon the Deus.  What ever happened to the Muslim?  Islam was shut out.  Perhaps the imam’s car got caught in traffic at the “largest crowd ever to witness an inauguration,” according to White House propagandist, Sean Spicer.  We’ll have to check on that.

Were five Christian prayers necessary in order to bestow the imaginary blessing of the world’s phantom superpower upon the incoming Trump Administration?  Might just one, or two, or even three prayers have been sufficient?  Gee, even three seems like overkill.  One realizes that not only are all the religions divided among themselves, denominations too are subdivided into different belief systems, each requiring plenty of grandstanding and gerrymandering.  And so, a sort of Christian ice cream cone was stacked with all the most popular flavors of Baskin-Robbins at the inauguration.  The only thing missing was hot fudge and a cherry.

Once the swearing in ceremony officially ended — for those horrified at the sight of this historic moment, the swearing at began.  The billionaire ruling class accompanied by their congressional puppets and new cabinet appointees and excused themselves over to Union Station, just a 10-minute walk from the Capital.  That where the inaugural luncheon was officially held and began with….(take a wild guess)….yet another prayer.  Some verses were quoted out of a holy book written 2,000 years ago laden with contradictions which mysteriously even condones slavery.  I don’t remember what was said exactly.  I doubt anyone was listening, or paying much attention since everyone’s hickory smoked brisket was getting cold on the plate while the mullah rambled on about the ancient Corinthians.  There were a lot of thou’s and ye’s slung around, though.

In the spirit of bipartisanship, President Obama’s inauguration ceremonies had plenty of religious fanfare, also.  And, I was just as annoyed about it then as I am now with this new Administration.  In fact, religious gets used as a political prod by many politicians in both parties.  But this was akin to smoking the frankincense.  Curiously, most in attendance at these types of public events don’t appear take prayers very seriously, as evidenced by the bitterly deep political divide fueled by institutionalized greed and avarice for money and power that’s come to inflict the ruling class.  It’s as though once the praying ends, it’s open season and the political pickpocketing begins.  Let’s steal and kill for Jesus.

Next came Day Two.  Any notion that the first full day of the new Administration would take on a more serious tone was shattered when, on the following morning, less than 24-hours after seven prayers were offered, President Trump’s first order of business was to attend something called a “National Prayer Service,” held at Washington’s National Cathedral.  Somehow, instead of just Christians and Jews peppering the pews and slinging the sermons, a Muslim and Hindu miraculously passed through security.  Once again, we’ll have to look into that.

Prayers and preaching has no place in or at any official government function, assuming one shares a literal interpretation of the Constitutional separation of church and state.  Millions of American secularists share this view.  Fortunately, the previous Administration even acknowledged what’s become the fastest-growing of all factions on religiosity (which is the “nones” — meaning those having no religious belief).  We aren’t growing smaller.  We’re increasing in size.  But you wouldn’t know any of this given the holy liturgy of events over the past three days and all the lapdog attention afforded to Christian evangelicals.

Surely, there’s at least one thing on which we can probably all agree. believers and secularists alike.  There’s plenty of praying going on right now, right this very instant.  Even many of those who strongly oppose President Trump and his policies are out there praying.  They’re praying with as much conviction as anyone else.  I sometimes wonder how any spiritual being, real or imagined, could handle the disparate prayers of so many contradictory hopes and wishes.  All this praying is enough to make any god ignore the incessant chatter and flip the off switch.

 

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Posted by on Jan 22, 2017 in Blog, Essays, Personal, Politics, What's Left | 17 comments

Trump’s War on Logic

 

 

The first course I ever took at the University of Texas was logic.

It wasn’t by design that I signed up for “Logic 101.”  It was by accident, really.  Logic sounded like an interesting subject and besides, the classtime fit perfectly into my schedule.  Thankfully, that unintended course taught me more about how to think than any other endeavor.  Being exposed to the rigorous practice, that’s to say the trial and error of how to properly test and discuss an idea set the tone for the remainder of my college years, and for my personal and professional life.

Taking Logic 101 also provided me with a clearer understanding of how and why science isn’t merely one subject of many, to be segregated into a separate classroom on its own aside math or literature.  Science was actually was the nitty-gritty all-inclusive machinery, of both means and methods, the gateway to every question in the entire universe — including what we (think we) know and what we’ve yet to discover.  Science is the handy toolbox allowing us to unlock all human curiosities.

All students everywhere should be required to take logic as a prerequisite for graduation.  If someone isn’t able to think critically, what’s the point of getting an education?  Without logic, whatever else follows is like constructing a skyscraper on top of quicksand.  The foundation collapses.  No amount of subject knowledge later on can compensate for a lack of understanding of how logic works, in other words — thinking logically.

When one speaks of logic, what this really means is thinking critically.  One must always be open to new ideas, even ideas which might initially seem strange or be objectionable, even repulsive.  Otherwise, there’s no opportunity to learn and evolve.  I’m terribly troubled where I hear someone say their mind can’t be changed on any given subject.  That’s not just close-minded.  It’s inherently self-destructive to the betterment of the body, mind, and soul.  Virtually all of us, anyone who is human, has changed an opinion on one subject or other — based either on personal experiences or when confronted with a preponderance of evidence.  That’s critical thinking.  That’s logic in practice, or at least the ideal reaction to logic.

Sadly, logic has become decreasingly relevant in modern society, particularly on social media, and even more so in today’s toxic political environment.  Logic is almost to the point of extinction.  Compelling evidence suggests that logic no longer matters, at all.  Hence, to be thoroughly logical (and trustworthy) with my readers, what I wrote in the previous paragraph isn’t quite true.  Yes, the sad fact is — you can build a house on quicksand.  Indeed, someone can be both successful, very successful, and illogical.  The new President of the United States is the perfect example.

President Trump and many of his most outspoken supporters often engage in illogical tactics.  A certain level of rhetoric is to be expected, of course.  But this is something quite different, something historically unprecedented.  The Trump Campaign, which has now morphed into the Trump Administration clearly intends to continue the same tactics used over the past two years, which is to deflect, to confuse, to frustrate, and ultimately to wipe out far more logical counterarguments.  This is entirely willful and premeditated.  The Trump camp knows precisely what they’re doing.  Unfortunately, it works.  Dark is the new light.

On what is the first full day of the new Trump Administration, today’s poisonous basket of outrageous, demonstrably false statements — made repeatedly by both President Trump (at CIA Headquarters) and a scumbag named Sean Spicer (at the White House Press Briefing) — prove beyond a shadow of any doubt that the new Administration intends to invent its own data, squash any conflicting facts, and then go on the attack all those who’s job it is to actually seek information and tell the truth in the public interest.  This isn’t just annoying, it’s absolutely terrifying.  Even Trump supporters should be alarmed when on the second day of the job, both the President and the Press Secretary tell bold face lies to cameras, particularly on an issue with most would consider to be trivial.

A minor issue which should have been yesterday’s news and largely forgotten was reignited by President Trump himself (not the media), who on the solemn occasion of supposedly honoring the hard-working professionals within the intelligence community, instead launched into a petty Dr. Strangelove-like tirade on one of the most irrelevant topics of any Day One presidency in the history of the United States.  Upright in front of the wall of honor, a marble memorial which pays tribute to the men and women of the CIA who gave the ultimate sacrifice (their lives), President Trump mocked the occasion and flipped into another campaign speech and then, much to the astonishment of the former CIA Director who was watching, used the awkward occasion to behave like a bratty thin-skinned kindergartner, bickering with his fellow schoolboys over who gets to play with the ball.  Several minutes were wasted arguing over the most trivial subject (the number of attendees at Trump’s inauguration), which had been settled already with proven facts by just about every media outlet in the world, with ample photographic and statistical evidence.

Yet, this behavior wasn’t anything unusual for a man and the movement which scares the hell out of many sane people who are more used to a Commander in Chief with which we have a common baseline for decision-making, despite past partisan differences.  Even those who hated LBJ or Ford or Carter or Bush knew there would be basic agreement on a set of easily verifiable facts.  If The Trump Administration can’t even accept basic factual evidence on something as meaningless as mall attendance at his inauguration, what happens at 2 am in the Oval Office when some kind of real executive decision needs to be made about North Korea firing a nuke or ISIS launching another terrorist attack?  What will the new President do in the not so distant future when bad inevitably things happen and we need strong and steady leadership which takes facts and evidence into account?

Well, it appears that the zebra never changes its stripes.  Self-delusion has been the modus operandi of Donald Trump his supporters, not just from the moment Dear Leader first announced his reality television show-brand driven candidacy, but from the very foundation of the ultra-reactionary Tea Party movement, which took fertile root in the rich dung of division and hate, then sterioded by a frantic obsession to destroy absolutely everything associated with the Black guy living in the White House with the Muslim-sounding name.  Logic be damned, even when the Obama Administration unquestionably saved the nation from plunging into a Great Depression, cut unemployment by 40 percent, saved the auto industry from total collapse, withdrew troops from two unwinnable foreign wars, or even tripled the grotesque profits of greedy Wall Street, which is something conservatives should have been rejoicing.  Had Republican posted President Obama’s identical record, conservatives would be lobbying for another face carved into Mount Rushmore.  The trouble was — the Republican hardliners couldn’t take any credit for all the good stuff this time.  So, when the facts weren’t political convenient, they made up their own.  And that’s exactly what President Trump and his supporters have done, and continue to do.  Nothing, it seems, will change.

Writer/pollster Nate Silver coined the term “the Spread,” which best describes the popular tactic used by Trump and his supporters, particularly on social media.  I’m told this term stems from his days as a high school debater.  The dubious tactic goes like this:  When losing an argument, respond aggressively by slinging lots of outrageous charges and counter-arguments, really fast.  Being bombarded with an abundance of nonsense often succeeds because it buries the more logical argument with confusion.  The solid fact-based argument eventually gets forgotten.  The more thoughtful fact-based debater is snowed under by an avalanche of misinformation.

From pivoting to different topics, to ad hominem attacks, to constructing false straw men, the Trump Administration has mastered one thing, at least, and it’s both dubious and destructive.  Telling a bold lie over and over and over again until it’s finally believed is an old tactic that was once used so effectively that it eventually led to one of the worst periods of human history.  Indeed, that’s all it took.  A few lies were repeated often enough and were by a charismatic leader that enough people believed them, and then they shut off their brains and abandoned logic.

If history repeats itself as some have suggested, we are living in dangerous times.

 

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Posted by on Nov 11, 2016 in Blog, Essays, Politics, What's Left | 1 comment

The New Trumptington

 

alligators-in-the-swamp-06

 

Gators and Mosquitoes swimming in the New Trumpington:  The president-elect isn’t “draining the swamp” — it’s about to get bigger and far more dangerous

 

Donald Trump was elected on Tuesday based on a quite powerful but simple pledge that resonated with millions of Americas:  “I’ll drain the swamp in Washington, D.C.,” he said.

Sounds good.  Even many of those who voted for someone other than Trump, or didn’t bother to vote at all, would likely agree with this fashionable conviction that our federal government all too often doesn’t represent our interests.

What does is mean to “drain the swamp?”  One assumes that an incoming Trump Administration could spell the end of powerful special interests, swindling lobbyists, the corrupting influence of big money in politics, and the troublesome practices of jaded jackals and legal leeches who have collectively and quite willingly transformed the shrine a people’s democracy into — not a place of patriotism and pride — but a justifiable target of our mass anger and ire.

Yet, only days after getting elected, early signs indicate the D.C. swamp isn’t about to get any smaller.  To the contrary, the murky political waters of infested Washington are about to become much larger and far more dangerous.

Consider if you will the reaction of financial markets, which are perhaps the truest (impartial) barometer on the real presumptive winners and losers in Washington the New Trumpington.  Wednesday and Thursday, two days following the election, the biggest stock gains were posted by the following:

— Private prison companies

— Defense contractors

— Pharmaceutical companies

— For-profit colleges

— Financial speculators / Wall Street investment houses

 

screenshot-2016-11-11-at-9-17-31-am-edited

 

Translated, this means the same scumbags who currently profit off the incarceration of millions (of mostly non-violent drug offenders), the military and intelligence industry (which has fearmongered us into a permanent state of global war), the fat cat financial barons (who produced the worst economic collapse since the Great Depression just a few years ago), the big drug companies (who gouge Americans on the price of medications charging double and triple the prices in other countries), and the scam-ridden diploma mills (like scandal-plagued and now defunct Trump University) appear to be the biggest winners from Tuesday night’s stunning electoral fallout.

So, what does this all mean for the rest of us?

The New Trumpington looks to be a frightening place.  Even if we give Donald Trump an extraordinary degree of benefit of the doubt and if we were to assume that he earnestly means what he says about cleaning up the mess, his transition team and many of the names now being floated for top cabinet positions is a clique of buttressed beltway insiders with glaring conflicts of interest, ties to troubling institutions that have failed us, and burned-out former politicians who are desperately looking for one final government gig before they tumble into the grave (Rudy Guiliani, please pick up the white courtesy phone).

The Trump inner circle includes someone named Ken Blackwell, who is reportedly going to head the president-elect’s transition team on all matters of domestic policy.  For those unfamiliar with Blackwell, he’s a senior fellow at the notoriously right-wing religious organization known as the Family Research Council — which is infamous for opposing gay rights and protections, promoting Bible-based creationism being taught in public schools, opposing all forms of gambling, and working tenaciously to oppose women’s reproductive rights (not just in the U.S., but even in overpopulated nations plagued with starvation).  Read more HERE.

Myton Ebell is being pegged as the primary counsel to the incoming president on environmental matters.  Trouble is, he’s an avowed denier of global climate change.  Read more about Ebell, his past statements, and what his role could mean for the rights of animals, the stewardship of out environment, and the future of the planet in this article from Scientific American.

Wait, there’s more terrible news for the environment.  Republican hired gun Mike McKenna has been hand-picked for a key role on Trump’s transition team, and what’s likely to be a cushy future political appointment.  According to public disclosures, in 2016 McKenna’s clients as a D.C. lobbyist included the Koch Companies (yeah, those Koch Brothers), Southern Company Services, Dow Chemical, and Competitive Power Ventures Inc.

But that’s not even the worst of it, yet.  It’s been reported that Sarah Palin, the half-term, half-wit former governor of “Drill Baby Drill” infamy, is being trial-ballooned as the next Secretary of the Interior.  Gulp!  This isn’t some sick Saturday Night Live skit, folks.  There exists the very real possibility that the nation’s most coveted natural treasures will soon be put into the hands of someone who’s completely clueless on matters of the environment who’s willing and eager to plunder the nation’s public lands off to the highest bidder.

So far, I’ve just scratched the surface on the environmental impacts of what a Trump presidency will mean.  You can be absolutely certain that a similar level of scrambling behind the scenes is taking place in secret circles dead set on digging their fangs into health care, finance and investment, the criminal justice system, national defense, and other vital institutions both public and private which impact our lives on a daily basis.

The swamp creatures are here.  They’ve not only arrived.  They’ve been here inside the Beltway, all along.  Swamp Thing is real.  Rudy Giuliani, Chris Christie, and Newt Gingrich are lurking, waiting for their phone calls.  Indeed, there’s a very good chance that one or more of these scandal-plagued cretins gets picked for a top spot in the Trump Cabinet.

Has the water gotten any lower in the swamp, yet?

Nope.

Welcome to the new Trumpington, which sounds a whole helluva’ lot like the old Washington of eight years ago.

 

Read more:  Trump campaigned against lobbyists.  Now, they’re on his transition team.

 

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