Thursday, December 31, 2020

2020: The Worst of the Rant


This was the worst year in the American experiment since the war between the states. This is as bad as it will ever get in our lifetimes, folks. It will never again get quite as weird as this. God bless America....


In the fifteen years that I've been writing this site, I have usually composed between 56 and 60 pieces per year. In 2020 I've composed over one hundred and seven. Donald Trump inspires many things....writers block is not one of them

Here is a tiny example of the year that is about to mercifully expire. Good freaking riddance.


January 4:

 have a strong suspicion that Donald Trump is not particularly good at the game of chess. Chess requires the ability to predict what might happen several moves in the future - a talent that Trump obviously lacks. In the year 2011, the current First Fool predicted that then-president Barack Obama would invade the nation of Iran in order to ensure his reelection the following year. He called the imagined future invasion "pathetic" - and it certainly would have been quite pathetic indeed had it happened. It didn't. Instead, in 2015, the Obama administration worked out a series of deals with the Iranians that effectively put their nuclear ambitions on the back burner. Almost as soon as he took office, our esteemed Common-Pervert-In-Chief destroyed the entire deal.

January 7:

Whatever the case may be, we are screwed either way. We will either be forced to continue on for the remaining year with an unhinged maniac like Donald Trump navigating the ship-of-state, or we'll have to content with an imbecile like Mike Pence calling the shots. Either way, America is fucked. Get used to living in a nation in ruins.

Unglued and Unhinged

Iran's response to the killing of General Qassem Soleimani was, to say the least, restrained. They might have retaliated in a way that killed a whole lot of American soldiers but, instead, responded by making sure (I believe)  that the loss of life was minimal or non-existent. In doing so, they avoided a bombardment that surely would have led to an all-out war. Apparently, someone was able to convince The Donald to leave well enough alone. Both sides, hopefully, are satisfied. This incident might have evolved into World War Three, just as the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand (and his wife) in June of 1914 mutated into the carnage of the First World War, or, as it was known for a generation, "The Great War". You see, when that unspeakable conflict ended in November of 1918, no one envisioned a second war on that scale as being even remotely possible. On September 3, 1939 everything changed.

"I don't know him".

You got to hand it to Giuliani. The man will go down in history as a walking disaster. Throughout this entire fiasco, everything he touched turned into shit. The very fact that Trump did not give this unhinged and incompetent twit the sack three years ago speaks untold volumes about the man's grip (or lack thereof) on basic realities that you and I take for granted. To think that nineteen years ago he was a figure of national pride - "America's Mayor" - in the wake of the tragedy of September 11, 2001. Today he has found himself in complete disgrace, more-than-likely within months of being criminally indicted. His fall has been complete and permanent. His reputation is in ashes. When his term as mayor of New York City ended in January of 2002, he should have disappeared. He didn't. Schmuck.

February 19:

Nancy Clements


I took a sentimental journey last weekend to my late mother's hometown of South Bend, Indiana to bid farewell to my aunt, Nancy Babcock Clements. She married my mother's youngest brother, Bob, in the nineteen-fifties. They settled in South Bend where they raised their eight children. Uncle Bob and Aunt Nancy were my godparents. At the time I was christened in August of 1958 they had just given birth to their eldest, Brooke. Since I was in New York and they were seven-hundred miles away in Indiana, the entire affair had to be done by proxy. It's amazing when you consider that I had the talent to complicate family matters even at such a tender age.

Cousin Susan

At her memorial service at St. Patrick's Church in South Bend (the same church that my parents were married in nearly seventy years ago) she was remembered for her kindness and unflinching generosity. Nancy and Bob could easily have succumbed to bitterness and despair, but they never lost their quiet gentleness - even after losing two daughters, Loretta and Susan - the latter of whom died in 1992 through an unspeakable act of murder. Aunt Nancy's passing represents another vanishing thread connected to a childhood that is slowly dwindling away.

Bob, Nancy, Loretta and Susan are together again. There's even more to look forward to tonight. That works for me!

Uncle Bob and Aunt Nancy Clements, 2017

March 2020


 Let me state for the record that the former vice-president was not my first choice to be the standard bearer in this year's political contest. That spot was held in my heart by Elizabeth Warren, followed by Pete Buttigieg. Biden and Bernie were tied for fourth place. Although I  haven't been a registered Democrat since 1998, I tend to vote for Democratic candidates. Four years ago, when they nominated Hillary Clinton, I felt then (as I still do) that they had made a dreadful mistake. Show me a candidate unable to defeat a babbling moron like Donald Trump, and I'll show you a perfectly horrible candidate. As disappointed as I was with Clinton as the nominee, on the morning of Election Day 2016, I dutifully made my way down to the firehouse (my polling place) and cast my ballot for her.
March 15:
They've always talked about "the luck of the Irish". If you think about it, all through their history, the Irish people have been anything but lucky. It wasn't until years after they became Americans that some serious luck start to catch up with them. It should be "the luck of the Americans". All through its history, whenever any serious crisis faced this country, the United States has always been blessed to have a leader of insight living in the White House. All of that changed nearly twenty years ago, on September 11, 2001. When the worst attack on American soil since Pearl Harbor sixty years earlier occurred, America's luck ran out. I don't need to rehash the sins and blunders of the Age of Dubya; It's all too depressing to even think about. Now that we're about to face the worst pandemic in one-hundred-and-two-years, given the intellect and instability of the current occupant of the Oval Office....well....there's not a lot of room for optimism, we'll just leave it at that.
March 28:
Audrey Degan Gargiulo

Audrey Gargiulo was my father's sister. Although she was the oldest of my grandparents' seven children, she survived them all by a decade or more, living to the age of 100. She was laid to rest yesterday in the family plot at St. Columba's Cemetery in Chester, NY. In normal times she would have had a huge send-off - but these times are hardly normal. There were less than ten people attending her wake and burial. She was the last survivor of all my aunts and uncles on both sides of the family. This truly is the end of an era. This is a melancholy day in too many ways to count.
April 7:
I went through a bout of flu last week, thinking I had contracted the deadly corona-virus. It seems that the symptoms have made a turnaround and that I am fine, thank you very much. Although I am still as tired as I have ever been, I cannot emphasize enough that we all need to keep to ourselves as much as we possibly can and continue to practice "social distancing". It's our only hope.

Did you ever - in a million years - think that our once-great nation would sink this low? No, neither did I. Get used to the shit-storm. It's gonna be around for a while.
April 9:
In previous elections, the city of Milwaukee, Wisconsin had one-hundred and twenty-five polling places for their elections. This year, thanks to the Republican-controlled state legislature, they have five. Milwaukee is a fairly large city that is also quite liberal - and quite black. This will force thousands of human beings to be in close proximity with one another - and during a pandemic. This leads me to the only conclusion I can possibly muster: Republicans want dark-skinned people dead.
April 16:
As of this morning, there have been 32,000 deaths in the U.S. from the coronavirus. Donald Trump didn't want to upset the economy in order not to hurt his chances for reelection in the fall. As a result, he refused to sound the alarm on the incoming pandemic. For two crucial months the homicidal little sociopath did very little to stem the tide of this tsunami. This isn't mere speculation on my part, folks, this is an indisputable, documented fact. Why, then, hasn't the old freak been indicted on 32,000 separate charges of criminally negligent homicide?
Any answers, Quiz Kids?
April 20:
Why is Trump so gung ho to open up the American economy so soon? Could it be that a second wave even more serious than the first would give him an excuse to shut down the election in November? Could the disgusting little thug really be that despicable? I'm really starting to wonder. It has been comically obvious since he took office that Donald Trump had all the makings of a despot-wannabe. He appears to be on the threshold of making his dreams come true. As I've been saying since the morning after he was elected four years ago, this is going to end badly.
April 24:
The good news is that we have only nine months to contend with the Orange Jackass living in the house that was once occupied by Abraham Lincoln - I think. My theory is that The Donald has been encouraging his idiotic base to do so many reckless things because he knows that a massive second wave of breakouts in the autumn would allow him to use the pileup of bodies as an excuse to shut down the elections in November. What other reason could there be for him to promote such insane behavior on such a mass scale? Or maybe it's merely a symptom of Trump's already obvious insanity. Am I wrong in these theories? Perhaps. Perhaps not. We shall see.

May 7:

Donald Trump is consciously waging viral warfare on the American people. He is trying to reopen the entire country at a moment when it is not even close to being ready. If this happens there will be an explosion of deaths between now and mid August. Most pandemic experts are predicting nothing less.

May 9:

The leaders of the governments of the United States and South Korea were made aware of the coronavirus pandemic at the very same moment on the very same day. South Korea immediately sprang into action in order to contain the virus. As of this moment their total death toll is around 250 people. The United States, on the other hand, chose to ignore the obvious. It wasn't for another three crucial months that Donald Trump decided that maybe he should declare a national emergency. The silly bastard then went golfing. Was this a great country or what?

May 16:You were forewarned - not only on this site - but by scores of other commentators. This corrupt and disgusting imbecile would eventually go after his political enemies. Anyone paying a molecule of attention should have known that something as outrageous as this would eventually happen. Unfortunately not too many of Americans had their eye on the ball. That is why we find ourselves in the situation we're in today. This is something that transpired for no other reason than the complete and utter stupidity of a significant minority of the American electorate. Pat yourselves on the back.

May 30:


Cold-Blooded Murder
In the wake of the pandemic that has thus far killed in excess of one-hundred thousand Americans and the most devastating economic collapse in ninety-one years, the United States is now forced to contend with the most calamitous example of racial unrest since the night Martin Luther King was murdered fifty-two years ago. It all started on Monday when George Floyd, a citizen of Minneapolis, Minnesota stopped into a store to purchase some goods. When Mr. Floyd paid for his items with an allegedly counterfeit twenty dollar bill, the proprietor of the joint phoned the police. As he told the press later, he didn't believe that George intentionally passed along a fake bill - most people who come into possession of them are innocent. He merely wanted them to investigate the matter. When they arrived, George was still in the vicinity of the establishment. The owner says that Floyd wasn't violent or belligerent, and yet, within a minute-or-so, the poor man was face-first on the ground, an officer's knee pressed against his neck, cutting off blood flow and oxygen.
June 6:

It was a perfectly beautiful day to hold such a beautiful event. What struck me was the crowd. Most of them were very young - and a lot of them were quite white. You've got to give a standing ovation to the millennials of all sizes and colors.  As I've written on this site before, I have nothing but awe and admiration for these kids. My generation was handed the strongest, economically sound nation in the history of the world. And what do we bequeath them? A socioeconomic and ideological cesspool. I have no doubt that it is the people who were born in the last decade of the twentieth and the first two decades of the twenty-first centuries who are going to turn this damaged planet around and shake it up in a way that it's never been shaken up before. I long ago stopped holding my breath waiting for my generation to get with the program. That ain't gonna happen, campers. I don't trust anyone over thirty. Sorry.
June 18:
Seven months and three days to go before this nightmare is behind us....God willing. Did you ever dream that this country would fall as low as it has? I never did. Twenty years ago I believed that America had reached rock bottom when it stupidly elected George W. Bush. He's starting to look like Abraham Lincoln when placed in juxtaposition with Donald J. Trump. My youngest brother Jeff has just announced that if this moron is reelected he is going to apply for French citizenship. There was a time, not so very long ago, when this knowledge would have depressed me. Now I'm wondering what the hell took him so long. Can you blame him?
June 20:
Hello to the people of Tulsa, Oklahoma! I know that a lot of you are anxious to see -  LIVE AND IN PERSON! - President Donald J. Trump when he blows into town today for a mass, indoor rally. I know the feeling. My whole life I wanted to meet a president. I didn't care if it was an ex-president, a current president - or even future president. Any one would do! I finally got my wish in 1983 when I met a future president in the lobby of the not-quite-finished Trump Tower in New York City. Ironically, that future president turned out to be - you guessed it - Donald Trump. In a further irony, my life is not any fuller for having had this experience. In fact, it makes me kind of sick to even have to think about it  all these years later - but that's another story for another day, boys and girls.
June 21:
When you get to the point in your national affairs where George W. Bush is starting to look good, you've reached a sorry state indeed. We've gotten to a place where it seems obvious that Trump and the Republican party have every intention of overthrowing the government of the United States by means of illegal electoral tactics. It's obvious in the way they've been limiting the amount of polling places in states and counties that are trending to vote for the Democratic party in November. And it's hideously obvious by the lengths they are going to prevent African Americans from having access to the ballot box.
June 27:
Trump is setting himself up to be the most prolific mass murderer in the history of the American experiment. His inaction before this week, I believe, entitled him to be charged  with 120,000 cases of criminally negligent homicide. Everything changed this week. When he herded thousands of his half-witted followers into a series of indoor rallies in Oklahoma, Arizona, and a packed outdoor rally in Wisconsin - during a pandemic - the charges could be upped (in my opinion) to cold blooded murder. His objective is to make this pandemic so catastrophic that he thinks he'll be able to use the utter chaos that ensues in the autumn to shut down the national election. He legally cannot do that according to the Constitution. But ask yourselves this question:

Since when does this corrupt jackass and common pervert give a flying fuck about legalities? Seriously.
July 19:
In March of 1965, John Lewis, along with hundreds of other people, was beaten senseless by the Alabama state police as they tried to march peacefully across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma. John suffered a fractured skull on that dark day and almost didn't survive. For the past couple of weeks there has been a petition going around to take the name of the old confederate racist down from that bridge and rename the structure for John Lewis. Humble as always, Lewis objected to the idea. The fact is, he's no longer around to complain. It should be forever known as The John Lewis Bridge. Considering the time we're living through, the symbolism behind such a move would be incalculable. The city fathers and mothers of Selma should know that the time to do this is now.
July 20:
The president of the United States of America is a traitor. I don't believe that he has any intention of removing himself from the White House six months from today, January 20, 2021. 
July 22:
We are just two days shy of six months left on the clock until this corrupt and disgusting administration is thrown onto History's shit pile. We have no other choice but to ride it out and hope that the unhinged, orange sociopath in the oval office doesn't blow us all into a bazillion itty bitty pieces.  And not one of us should be complacent enough to think that Joe Biden has got this thing wrapped up like a Christmas present. He doesn't. We need to do everything as humanly possible to ensure that Donald Trump is not reelected on the third of November. If he is able to retain another four years - whether de does it legally or illegally - this country is doomed. Do you really think I'm exaggerating? Stay tuned.
July 26:
It amazes me that someone with the serious gravitas and grace of an Alexandrea Ocasio-Cortez was born in 1989, the year my father died and two months after my thirty-first birthday. These events in my life seem to have happened only a few weeks ago. I thought that we would have to wait generations for someone like her to come along - but here we are and there she is! She is my hero, or in the parlance of the times in which we live: my she-ro. She could very well be the first woman president of the United States. She is only thirty, and has another five years before she is even eligible for the damned job. But it could happen. She fills me with more hope than I've come to expect from the American Dream in a very long time. I awaken most mornings these days with an optimism that has been deceased in me for years. It's coming back to life, bit by bit. AOC is one of the reasons for that.
August 10:
Branson and Trump
We have five months and ten days left until this nightmare of an administration is mercifully behind us. What is beyond certainty is that Donald Trump is a sore loser. The truth of the matter is that the man has been a loser most of his miserable life; that is why the disgusting imbecile is so chronically grumpy. His smile is more akin to a sneer than anything else. He once told Virgin CEO Richard Branson that he loves nothing more than getting even with people who have crossed him. Between Election Day 2020 and Inauguration Day 2021, the soon-to-be former president will have two months, two weeks and three days to "get even" with the American people for banishing him from the White House. That will be the time to be on your toes, folks. The damage he will attempt in that period could very well be long lasting. Hang on.
August 12:
I came to consciousness early in the morning to the news that Joe Biden had chosen the woman who is to be his running mate in 2020. It's Kamala Harris, whom I've been rooting for to take the spot for months. Things rarely go my way as far as American politics is concerned so you will please forgive me for savoring this scrumptious moment. No current member of the senate has impressed me more than the gentlewoman from California. I knew from the moment I first heard her speak a little over four years ago that she was going to be a star. I was just looking at a photograph of the 2004 Democratic nominees: two guys named John  (Kerry and Edwards). That will probably be the last time that we ever see two white guys as the nominees of the Democratic Party. After 2020, there will be no way of going back to the way things used to be. This is a jolly good thing. Don't expect diversity from the GOP any time soon. Ain't gonna happen, Bubba. 
August 15:
Trump refuses to hand over a dime. He is trying  to stop the mail-in/absentee ballots from being delivered on time - if at all - and he said as much. The fact that millions of senior citizens rely on the mail to receive life-saving medications every month of the year means not a thing to this disgusting, homicidal Neanderthal. All that matters to Donald Trump is WINNING - by any and every means necessary, and at every and any cost. And if that cost should include the lives of you or your loved ones? Well, that's what we call "tough shit", amigo! This despicable bastard is your president. I mean - c'mon, folks! This is a guy who admitted on a nationally televised program that he finds his own daughter sexually attractive. We knew this about him before the election of 2016! Were you expecting any better? Seriously.
August 18:
Since [Louis] DeJoy has impeded the delivery of a mass amount of mail he deserves a lot more time in the slammer than a measly six months. He would be lucky to get off with six years. Removing 681 letter sorting machines from various cities across the nation with huge minority populations that hope to vote by mail in November is corrupt on a scale no one has ever witnessed. Removing thousands of outdoor mailing boxes is an unspeakable crime against the citizens of this country. The practice was immediately halted once a loud enough cry was made at almost every level of the political spectrum. Apparently no more boxes will be removed - but the ones stolen from mostly poor and minority communities will not be replaced. The damage has been done - and quite swiftly.
August 20:

Trump knows damned well that the next administration (with the might of the Department of Justice behind it) will easily be able to siphon through the mountain of corruption and illegality behind the most disgusting American administration in the history of greed and mediocrity. 2020 will be the most important election day since 1932. We need to get out the vote and win. Only then will Donald Trump and these corrupt buffoons doing his bidding (and that would include Vladimir Putin) will be held accountable.
August 24:
George W. Bush could easily have beaten Johnson and Buchanan for the title of Worst Ever. Fortunately for him, he was saved from that dubious distinction by the arrival, on January 20, 2017, of Donald John Trump. In the year 2070, the president of the United States - who in all likelihood hasn't even been born yet - will still, on a daily basis, be dealing with the damage that Trump did to this nation so many decades before. The aftershock of the electoral madness of 2016 will be with us for a very long time.  The reverberations will outlive most of you reading this; perhaps all of you - perhaps even your young children. Get used to living in a nation in ruins.
August 25:
Last night was something unprecedented. By taking these assholes seriously, one could be forgiven for believing that if Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are elected on November 3, the collapse of western civilization is all-but-imminent. Church will be outlawed - as will education for children, heterosexual marriage, the flag, Mom, Pop and apple pie. One nitwit even proclaimed that Joe and Kamala wanted to create a "socialist utopia". Apparently not one person of the scores of people who vetted that speech had the brains to understand that "utopia" is defined as a perfect, harmonious society. These people are oodles of fun to watch; and to think that last night['s debate] was only the first of three!
August 31:
During his inaugural address thirty years ago, Donald Trump told the American people that the era of "American carnage" was over. This monumentally stupid man was wrong, of course. The carnage was just beginning. In sixty-four days the polls open up in America for what will be the 58th national election since the first one in 1788. Were I to tell you that 2020 is the most important campaign in our history I would be exaggerating - but only slightly. The only two elections that rank close to November 3 are 1864 - when Lincoln was reelected; and 1932 - when Franklin Roosevelt was chosen by the electorate over the conservative Republican Herbert Hoover. Like 1932 and 1864. The results of the 2020 presidential campaign will depend upon whether or not the United States of America has a future. It's as serious as that.
September 3:
He has repeatedly undermined the health of the public by holding rallies where his half-witted followers are not obliged to wear face masks in order to protect them from the COVID-19 virus. Ten days after he held one in Tulsa, Oklahoma, many people who attended that event began to show symptoms of the illness. Some of them even died - including longtime Republican operative and onetime presidential candidate Herman Cain. He continues to hold these events - as he did two days ago - in front of an audience that included a number of veterans of the second world war, not one of whom was under the age of ninety-three. 
September 3:
My uncle, Edward J. Degan, Jr. is buried at a military cemetery in France. He was killed in the Battle of the Bulge late in the evening of December 15, 1944. He was literally cut in half by a nazi tank shell. It is believed that he was the first soldier to fall in that conflict. He was five days shy of his 24th birthday when he died. This December 20 is the centennial of his birth.
September 11:
This is as big and as bad as it's ever gotten before. Trump is actively trying to steal the November election by any and all means possible. The next four months are going to be more violent than at any point since the war between the states over  century and a half ago. Donald Trump will be the instigator of that violence. Remember that since George W. Bush stupidly lifted Bill Clinton's ban on assault weapons nearly twenty years ago, a whole lot of not-too-bright Americans have been arming themselves with these dangerous guns. If Trump is defeated on November 3, expect many of these blithering nincompoops to take to the streets.
September 16:
When asked by a local Nevada reporter if he was worried about spreading the coronavirus by holding a rally in such closed quarters, he replied that he was not worried at all due to the fact that he was a safe distance from the audience. In other words, FUCK EVERYBODY ELSE, I'LL BE FINE. This is the man that the American electorate foolishly chose as commander-in-chief four years ago. We are now the laughingstock of the planet earth. It will take at least a generation before we have anything near the respect we had even under the administration of George W. Bush. This is completely embarrassing.
September 28:
In his answer to a question in the White House press room last week as to whether or not he would leave the office of the presidency if Joe Biden were elected by the voters on November the third, Donald Trump responded by saying “We’ll have to see”. Clearly this irresponsible jackass does not understand the Constitution, which says that the winner of the election automatically assumes the office at exactly 12 Noon on inauguration Day. For most of our history, that day fell on March the fourth. Since 1937, it has fallen on the twentieth of January - which is a jolly good thing, too. Can you imagine another one month and twelve additional days of this grotesque fool running the ship of state? No, me neither.
October 1:
On the evening of September 29, 2020, we bore witness to Donald Trump in his truest, most undeniable form. If you need anymore proof what a horrible mistake it was to send this half-witted piece-of-shit to the home that was once occupied by Lincoln and the two Roosevelts, then there is little hope left for you. Good luck trying to live a functional life. Last night, the president of the United States became so unglued during his debate with Joe Biden, that it was truly cringe-worthy in a way that is almost impossible to adequately explain. In the life of this country, there will never be a moment as completely weird as the one we are living through at the moment. There will never again be an era as despairing as the one in which we are living through at this time. As the Moody Blues once sang, "Isn't life strange?"
October 7:
Since all of the grownups have either resigned of have been fired from this administration, there seems to be no responsible voices whispering into Trump's ear any longer. The entire joint is drenched with political hacks and right-wing extremists. Since the nineties it has been obvious to anyone paying attention that the man is mentally ill; but in the last three days his insanity has gone crashing into full-tilt-boogie mode. And remember, he has the nuclear codes within an arm's reach of his tubby torso. We are past the time when the 25th Amendment should have been invoked and the responsibilities of the presidency handed over to - and I cannot believe that I am even writing these words - Mike Pence. That is how completely extreme things have gotten.
October 13:
Last night, The Donald had yet another mass campaign rally in the midst of the worst pandemic in over a century, this time in Orlando, Florida. Once again, the event was attended by by many of his half-witted followers, a lot of them not wearing potentially life-saving masks. I am convinced  that Trump is attempting to stir-up a spike in this epidemic that will inflict so much death and disease by Election Day that he will be use the mass chaos as an excuse to shut down polls across the country. When this disgusting administration is finally finished, the hideous old freak should be prosecuted for mass murder - among too many other things to count. 
October 21:
It's been in the running since May when Junior Trump made a pitch to his demented MAGA-brained followers to join the "Army of Trump". It appears to be what I suspected it of being from Day One: an opportunity for Dad to create his own private S.S. - loyal only to him. This week they are calling on this army of the faithful to make themselves known at polling places throughout the land to serve as "poll watchers" on Election Day. This is going to be interesting.
October 25:
We're not as far away as you might imagine from the worst that can possibly come to the American Experiment. With nine days left until the election of 2020, and with COVID cases skyrocketing across the country (in spite of the pleas from public health officials for people to wear masks and practice social distancing) we find ourselves teetering at the very cliff's-edge of our existence. For those of you who mistakenly find yourselves thinking that the hideous old freak has done as much damage to this republic as is possible for one man to do, and that he cannot possibly do any more, you might want to reassess your position on that point. The disturbing fact is that, in the two months, three weeks and five days left until Inauguration Day, Donald Trump is perfectly capable (and quite willing, I'm sure) of doing a lot more damage to this already thoroughly damaged nation. Does that sound like a stretch? Perhaps it is. I'll tell you what: let's all vote for the silly bastard on November 3 and see what happens.
November 1:
All bets are off if this asshole is reelected. Don't get out the vote as if your life depends upon it. Get out the vote because your life depends upon it. Do you have any friends or loved ones who tonight are lying in cemeteries for no other reason than the fact that Donald Trump was elected four years ago? Then you might have an idea of what I'm talking about. Think about it.
November 13:
FUN FACT: The day is Friday the thirteenth. The year is 2020. What could possibly go wrong?
Joe Biden is now the president-elect. There is no denying it. Kamala Harris will be sworn in on January 20 - not only as the first woman in that office - but as the first person of African descent to hold it. There is no denying that either. It should also be noted that Biden is the first Catholic to be elected to the presidency in sixty years. It's a perfect illustration of how things have changed in the United States. Sixty years ago when Jack Kennedy campaigned for the White House, the biggest issue of that run was his religion. In 2020, the issue of Biden's Catholicism was never even mentioned, not even by the most hateful of religious bigots representing the loony right wing - or, at least, I didn't notice it - and I tend to pay close attention to these things.
November 22:
Fifty-seven years ago today, our democracy came under a lethal assault when a demented little freak pointed a cheap, mail-order rifle at the head of the president of the United States from the sixth floor of a warehouse in Dallas, Texas. Today, democracy finds itself under assault once again, only this time around, the assailant is the president of the United States. Donald Trump is the tenth president to live in the White House since the time of Jack Kennedy. It defies reason to believe that the quality of American politicians (not to mention the American people) could have degraded to this point.
November 27:
Also, this week The Donald pardoned Michael Flynn for his committing perjury when talking to the FBI about his meetings with the Russians four years ago. This is only the first of many pardons in the next month-and-a-half. The problem here is that he can only pardon people for federal crimes - not state crimes. In other words, if Eric or Donald showed up at the Washington Monument with a couple of AK47 and mowed down thirty innocent people, a pardon from Papa would be prompt and certain. If I get busted for DUI here in New York and given a year in the slammer, I'm out of luck. Justice in America is a curious thing, you know?
December 2:
Okay, this is no longer even remotely funny. Rudy Giuliani needs to disappear from public life - FOREVER. I was saying as much ten years ago, but things have gotten even more drastic recently. If only he had had the sense to go gently into the good night of relative obscurity when his term as mayor of New York City ended in 2002. His legacy would have today been set in stone. He would have forever been remembered as "America's Mayor" following his (mostly) heroic behavior in the days and weeks following the horrific attacks on the Big Apple on September 11, 2001. That legacy is now ashes on the alter of public opinion. He will forever be remembered as Donald Trump's crazy spokesman. When his obituary is finally published in the not-too-distant future, the photograph at the top of the headline will no-doubt be of him with hair-dye dripping down both sides of his face - not a particularly good way to exit the public stage.
December 10:
The Donald and his silly minions are determined and hell-bent on subverting the democratic process on January 20, 2021. My biggest fear is that - for the first time in the history of this country - there will not be a peaceful transfer of power. If he calls for an army of his armed, MAGA-BRAINED followers to descend upon Washington to defend their leader, you can expect a very ugly and brutal scene on the streets of D.C. The question is: will he? Anything is possible with this deranged fool. I've been paying attention to this guy for nearly forty years. Four years ago I would tell anyone who listened that this was going to end badly. But even I never dreamed that things would quite get this weird. These are interesting times.
December 17:
Bill Barr has achieved the seemingly impossible. He has made me nostalgic for John Mitchell and Ed Meese. He made me forget about John Ashcroft! I never dreamed that such a thing would be even remotely possible. Strange days, indeed. As Donald Trump's "private attorney" these last two years he has done much damage - not only to the Department of Justice - but to the very idea of Justice in America itself. From his interfering in the sentences of some of Trump's chief cronies - with Mike Flynn and Roger Stone being the most notable examples, to his issuing a misleading version of the Mueller Report where he led Congress to believe that Trump had not obstructed justice (he had).
December 27:
The very fact that this "president" is attempting to overthrow the will of the American people is too sickening for discussion. Just when one thinks he has accepted the inevitable, the silly bastard drops a hint that he will be commander-and-chief for the next four years and beyond. He is trying to make "the base" believe that the election was stolen and that all of the mail-in ballots that went to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were fraudulent. The fact of the matter is that the total for Biden would have been even greater than it was had Postmaster General Louis DeJoy (at Trump's orders, no doubt) not junked thousands of post boxes in minority neighborhoods  all across the land. This very act alone should send both men to the federal slammer for a very, very long time.
As this horrible year ends I have nothing warm and fuzzy to offer you. Sorry about that, folks. This has been the worst year it has ever been my extreme displeasure to witness - and I'm old enough to remember 1968! Compared to 2020, '68 was lollipops and roses.
So there you have it folks. To quote The Who:
"I've got a feeling '21 is gonna be a good year".
We can only hope.
Tom Degan
Goshen, NY

Sunday, December 27, 2020

A Belated Holiday Greeting

In the nearly fifteen years I've been writing this blog, I have always composed a special message at Christmas. Even during the darkest days of Dubya (whom I miss. Somebody shoot me please) I've always been able to come up with something positive to put you in the Christmas spirit. Not so in 2020. This year has been such a complete drag that, to be perfectly honest with you, I was too depressed to write anything. I'm sure that won't be the case next year, God willing. At high noon in twenty-four days, there will be a new president residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, and Donald Trump will be on his way to grim and bitter exile to pack his belongings for Leavenworth.

The very fact that this "president" is attempting to overthrow the will of the American people is too sickening for discussion. Just when one thinks he has accepted the inevitable, the silly bastard drops a hint that he will be commander-and-chief for the next four years and beyond. He is trying to make "the base" believe that the election was stolen and that all of the mail-in ballots that went to Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were fraudulent. The fact of the matter is that the total for Biden would have been even greater than it was had Postmaster General Louis DeJoy (at Trump's orders, no doubt) not junked thousands of post boxes in minority neighborhoods  all across the land. This very act alone should send both men to the federal slammer for a very, very long time.

Yeah, 2020 was a drag alright. The thing that amazes me more than anything is that, had the COVID-19 pandemic not reared its ugly head, the Donald probably would have been re-elected! Yesterday the number of deaths in a single day reached an all-time record: over three-thousand. It's almost certain that a majority of those dead were lulled into thinking that the virus was no big deal. The culprits behind that thinking - more than anyone else - are Donald Trump and Fox Noise. There should be a class action lawsuit brought by every family in America who lost a loved one (or more) against Rupert Murdoch's entire media empire to place it out of business forever. I miss the good old days when they were only a danger to the nation's civic awareness. They've become a danger to human life. The entire organization needs to be shut down once and for all. Murdoch's citizenship should be revoked. Deport the old geezer back to Australia.

As this horrible year ends I have nothing warm and fuzzy to offer you. Sorry about that, folks. This has been the worst year it has ever been my extreme displeasure to witness - and I'm old enough to remember 1968! Compared to 2020, '68 was lollipops and roses.

So hang in there, boys and girls. The next twenty-four days will see us in for the ride of our lives. Some of it will be stomach-churning, some of it will be mind-blowing - yes, some of it will even be horrifying. But at least it won't be boring! That's the only bright side of living in Donald Trump's America.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY
Since I started this site in 2006, I have tried to post between fifty-five to sixty-five articles each year. The one you are reading now is the 105th piece I've posted since January 4, 2020. Donald Trump inspires many things. Writers block is not one of those things.
Green Christmas
by Stan Freberg
Here is a modern day Christmas parable we should all heed, This was recorded in 1958, the year I was born.

Stan Freberg spoke to us then; he speaks to us still.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Which Way You Going, Billy?

"Bill Barr kowtowed to President Trump's worst whims, unleashed federal law enforcement on peaceful protestors, and allowed the Trump administration to throw out law and order for the president's political allies. A disgusting legacy and stain on democracy."

Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.)

Bill Barr has achieved the seemingly impossible. He has made me nostalgic for John Mitchell and Ed Meese. He made me forget about John Ashcroft! I never dreamed that such a thing would be even remotely possible. Strange days, indeed. As Donald Trump's "private attorney" these last two years he has done much damage - not only to the Department of Justice - but to the very idea of Justice in America itself. From his interfering in the sentences of some of Trump's chief cronies - with Mike Flynn and Roger Stone being the most notable examples, to his issuing a misleading version of the Mueller Report where he led Congress to believe that Trump had not obstructed justice (he had).

That so many people at the beginning of Barr's term thought he would be a good choice to replace poor old Jeff Sessions was a bit unnerving to me. They apparently forgot his behavior for the brief time he served as attorney general for George H.W. Bush over thirty years ago. As the Bush 41 era was winding down, Barr had maneuvered pardons for men like secretary of state Casper Weinberger - who would surely have otherwise done some serious time in the slammer because of his machinations during the Iron Contra Affair. Trump is not the first master for whom Billy Barr has done the bidding. He really needs to be - forgive the lousy pun - disbarred.

It's not clear at this point whether or not Barr resigned or was fired. Is it possible that he is aware of plans the Donald has concocted for the next thirty-four days that even he wants no part of? That's a distinct possibility? Why not just stick it out until the end?

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


Woman is the Nigger of the World
by John Lennon
On the occasion of his 80th birthday in October, the estate of John Lennon released a two-CD set of digitally remastered tracks of his most influential recordings. Incredibly,  in an obvious bow to political correctness,  this song - which I believe to be his greatest - was omitted from the collection. Shame on them. This reminded me of the movement in recent years to ban Mark Twain's Huckleberry Finn from the nation's schools because of the presence of THAT WORD.
This is one of the most important recordings of the decade of the 1970s. To consign it to our cultural dustbin is wrong on too many levels to even count. It needs to be heard. Don't be afraid of it. To succumb to fear only diminishes all of us. Were they afraid of controversy? Really??? This is John Lennon we're talking about after all. As Lennon noted in one of the last interviews he ever gave in his life, the only people who were offended by the song were all of the uptight white liberals. In fact, when civil rights icon Dick Gregory first heard a demo of the song, he urged Lennon to record it.
Woman is the Nigger of the World.  Think about it.  Do something about it. Sing it. Share it.