Saturday, October 30, 2021

Strange Days in D.C.

A reporter from Rolling Stone named Hunter Walker (I really wish it was Hunter Thompson) uncovered something this past week that is surely to explode in the weeks to come. Apparently, a number of lawmakers (and their staffs) were involved in the planning and execution of what went down in Washington D.C. on January 6, 2021. I have a strong suspicion that the Rolling Stone report will end up  being the mere tip of an insanely nasty iceberg. These are definitely strange days in D.C. I never even dreamed I would live to see something as completely weird as this infect America's political conversation.  Here are some of the politicians named:

Paul Gosar
Lauren Boebert
Mo Brooks
Madison Cawthorn
Andy Biggs
Louie Gohmert

Or as Tuesday's New York Daily News referred to them, "the usual suspects".

As shocking as this was, here was the real bombshell: They're all Republicans. I'm just kidding you. Truth be told, their party affiliations weren't surprising at all. What would have been jolting would have been if any of the conspirators had occupied the other side of the aisle. More proof that the GOP is now an organized criminal enterprise. This is not to imply that the Democrats are saints, it's only that there are small pockets of hope within that idiotic party. The Republicans are beyond redemption.

As the investigations into the January 6 uprising continue, we're going to be finding out a lot about the loyalty of many of the people within congress (and a few without). They (and their ideological descendants have spent the last seventy years pompously lecturing us about "real Americans". What kind of "real American" would subvert and pervert the Constitution of the United States? The bad news for these people is that many of the nitwits who took part in the rioting are starting to sing. You can literally see the fear and panic in the eyes of a lot of folks on Capitol Hill. It really is an amusing thing to behold. It must be a horrible thing to contemplate the fact that, when the light is finally shown on their attempt to overthrow the Constitution, their disgrace will be eternal. I wonder if their kids will resort to changing their names. That would definitely be a suggestion for Don Jr., Eric, Ivanka, Tiffany and Barron. I'm just sayin'.

Keep your eyes glued on the insanity in D.C. This is going to get  really interesting, campers. To quote Bill Murray as Hunter S. Thompson from the 1979 film, "Where The Buffalo Roam": "It still hasn't got weird enough for me". It never will.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


A gentle shout-out to my beloved friend, Elle Mhn, whom I just learned is in total remission after an almost two year fight with breast cancer. You had all of us praying like crazy people for you, Elle. I cannot tell you how grateful we all are, I am sure, that our prayers were answered. Brian Mohin would be proud of you. In fact, I'm sure he is.

Here is a link to listen to Elle talk about her experience overcoming this horrible disease. The lady is a complete inspiration.

Happy day, Elle!

Sunday, October 24, 2021

POST #1054: Random Observations


    The Gang's All Here

This is merely a collection of unrelated thoughts. 

1. Accountability Time For Steve Bannon:

Steve Bannon will very soon be finding out (the hard way) that his demented mentor, Donald Trump, no longer has the power of the pardon. That is what the silly bastard must have been assuming when he failed to honor a congressional subpoena this week. Does the guy seriously believe that the pardon that was issued to him by Trump late in his term covered crimes he may commit in the future? The man is in for a rude awakening. One can only imagine if he is aware of the case of Susan McDougal who spent eighteen months in the slammer during the Bill Clinton era. If Bannon is unaware what a serious charge contempt of congress is, he's about to find out.

2. Ultimate Irony:

My brother Jeff posted the following on his Facebook page early the other day:

"Irony: using a device that transmits an inordinate amount of complex information tens of thousands of miles through thin air - via antennas and satellites - to convey to others that you 'don't trust science' "

Genius abounds.

3. My Steve Doocy Problem:

My earliest memory of television is of watching the Danny Thomas program when my family lived in Ridgewood, New Jersey (180 Highland Avenue). I remember that I was sitting on a couch next to my brother Jack. The room was dark with only a small lamp in the corner of the room illuminating our surroundings. We moved from Ridgewood in the autumn of 1960. I'm almost embarrassed to admit to you that my televisual memories go back sixty-one years.

In all of that time, and  in all of those years, I can truthfully say - beyond one tenth of a molecule of doubt - that Steve Doocy is the stupidest human being that I have ever seen on a so-called "serious" news program. He is a complete and utter embarrassment. The capper occurred sometime a couple of years ago when some congressional investigators sought information regarding a private meeting that Attorney General Bill Barr had with Donald Trump. Doocy stupidly exclaimed, "Haven't they ever heard of attorney/Client privilege?"

The president of the United States is not the client of the attorney general. The attorney general is not the private lawyer of the president of the United States.

The man has the I.Q. of a half-eaten box of Milk Duds. We're talkin' dumber than dog shit here.

4. Four (eight?) More years:

Trump is hell-bent on seizing the executive mansion in three years. If he receives the GOP nomination in the summer of 2024 (which, given the current ideological state of that disgusting party) he will declare victory on election night three years from now - regardless if he loses. It is my belief that he will declare victory even if he loses the Republican primaries. If he lives long enough to run in 2024 (always a question for a man of his advanced age) the damage that he is capable of doing to democracy in America is immense. Are the voters of the United States capable of going down this sick and detestable road again? I believe they are. The next three years should be really interesting.

Tom Degan​
Goshen, NY


Here is proof why Fox Nooz should be permanently shut down:

News for morons.

Sunday, October 17, 2021


And when the night is cloudy
There is still a light that shines on me
Shine on till tomorrow
Let it be.... 

The Beatles

I p
romise you, this will be very brief.

This is a small break from the train-wreck of current events and politics to take note of a major event in our culture. I was in kindergarten on the night The Beatles first appeared on The Ed Sullivan Show in February of 1964. I can remember going to bed that evening with those incredible harmonies still ringing in my five-year-old ears. My beloved grandmother, Loretta Doran Clements, passed away unexpectedly two nights later. Despite our family's tragedy at that moment, I've been sold on The Fabulous Beatles ever since.

Yesterday, Apple Records released onto vinyl and CD, the remastered recordings of their final LP, Let It Be. This record has been, since the day it first appeared, regarded as one of their lesser efforts. I have never been able to figure out why this would be so.  While it may not be their best album, it has some of the finest recordings ever produced by any rock 'n' roll band. 

The new remix sounds better than it ever has. One thing that stands out is John Lennon's composition, Across The Universe. It sounds as if he's singing it from Heaven, a determined and silly ghost that refuses to fade into that mysterious and unknowable void. The box set contains the alternate Get Back LP that was set to be released in the Spring of 1968, which was later vetoed by all four members of the band and wound up languishing in the Apple vaults for over a half century. It also contains a two-LP set of outtakes from the many-hours of tracks that comprised the January 1969 sessions.

Whenever a "new" Beatles product is released to the public, I get as giddy as the day in 1967 when I furiously peddled my bicycle down to the local pharmacy to pick up a copy of the new Magical Mystery Tour album. I was nine-years-old at the time. At sixty-three, I still retain some grasp of my fading childhood  memories. As eternity beckons, this is a very comforting thing indeed. Shine on till tomorrow....

The Beatles have sold more records than any other band of the first two decades of the twenty-first century. This is a group that made their last recording fifty-one years ago - two of whose members are long dead. Think about that.

This recording is available on CD and vinyl. In case it isn't in stock at your friendly, independently-owned, neighborhood record store (Like they really exist anymore!) It can be purchased on If you're a fan of The Beatles, you cannot afford to let this one pass you by. Shine on till tomorrow....but I repeat myself.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


Let It Be
by The Beatles

When asked about this recording in one of the final interviews of his long life, Louis Armstrong smiled and said simply, "That's church music!"

Amen, Brother Satch! 

Friday, October 15, 2021

Bannon's Dilemma

Steve Bannon was subpoenaed yesterday to appear before a House select committee to answer questions about the attempted January 6 overthrow of the election of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris. He refused to appear. Apparently, this impudent jackass believes that Donald Trump still has the power of the pardon. FUN FACT: He doesn't. Did Trump stupidly believe that he could issue pardons for crimes that would be committed post presidency? Given all that we know about the man, this is always a distinct possibility. Given all that we currently know about this bloviating jackass, anything is possible. Aren't American politics a riot?

Steve Bannon has privately (and publically) described himself as a "white supremacist". Really??? Take a good look at the photograph at the top of this page and compare it with one of, say, Lena Horne, Barack Obama, Van Jones or Eartha Kitt. White supremacist indeed. Truth be told, Bannon's claim to "white supremacy" is as ridiculous a claim as if I were to make it ( You should see me first thing in the morning....Honestly). 

Anyone refusing to reply a year ago to a congressional subpoena had the cloak of a Trump pardon hanging over his or her head. That is not the case any longer - way far from it. The brutal fact of the matter is that these craven assholes will be faced with months and years in the slammer. I would point them to the case of Susan McDougal, who did eighteen months in the can for her refusal to participate in Ken Starr's Whitewater scam. What went around is coming around....Food for thought, baby!

Steve Bannon (and everyone else who refuses to answer a congressional subpoena) needs to be thrown into federal prison as swiftly as possible. Remember that bit about "rule of law" and "checks and balances"? Yeah, so do I.  These bastards and bitches should not be allowed to get away with their assault upon our democracy. There's too much at stake. Way too much.

Is is as simple and as clear as this: Donald Trump needs to be thrown into federal prison for whatever is left of his sick and miserable life.

There, I've said it again,

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY

This is Jacqueline Kennedy being interviewed by NBC's Sander Vanocur in March of 1961. On the night she passed away in May of 1994, I was walking past her apartment building on 5th Avenue in Manhattan when a reporter from CBS News Radio stuck a microphone in my face and asked me to comment on her death. "She was one classy broad", said I.

She certainly was.

Monday, October 11, 2021

White Executive Privilege


"Millions of Americans have been sold a fraud that the election was stolen. Republicans have the duty to tell the American people that this is not true. Perpetuating the Big Lie is an attack on the core of our constitutional republic."

Rep. Elizabeth Cheney


Liz deserves next year's Profiles in Courage Award. Just a suggestion.

Can you imagine the shit-storm of outraged political invective that would have hit the fan had Barack Obama claimed "executive privilege" post presidency? No, neither can I. The right wing SCREAM machine would have gone into convulsions of spastic apoplexy had something that unconstitutional transpired. Let's just understate the situation by saying that they would not have taken it too well, okay? Once they had come back into consciousness, they would have rightly pointed out that executive privilege only pertains to sitting presidents and that, once they are out of office, they're on their own. Can you see Jimmy Carter citing "executive privilege" after being out of office for nearly forty years? Then again, in my wildest and weirdest dreams, I cannot even imagine Jimmy attempting anything quite that ridiculous. The man has an abundance of common sense. Donald Trump - on the other hand - is ridiculous personified. 

Any hopes we might have had that Donald Trump would gently disappear into that good night of obscurity have been dashed. He has revived his role as the greatest cancer on our national political conversation, and he is apparently determined to stay there. He is back at the rally pulpit and has every intention of staying there until at least January 20, 2025. Aren't I lucky? For someone who thrives on political craziness and unintentional comedy, this is a great time to be alive, indeed.

Trump is demanding that the Biden White House not release any documents pertaining to his final months in office. NBC News has obtained a letter to the National Archives written by White House counsel Dana Remus:

"President Biden has determined that an assertion of executive privilege is not in the best interest of the United States. and therefore is not justified as to any of the documents."

In effect, the Biden folks are telling Trump to go fuck himself -
in a nice and polite way, I'm sure. This is a gang that has much to hide, of that there can be not a molecule of doubt. My prediction over three years ago that Donald Trump will primarily be remembered as the first former president to go to federal prison still stands. Three former Trump administration workers (including Steve Bannon) are refusing to answer subpoenas to appear before a congressional investigating committee. Do these lamebrains understand that The Donald no longer possesses the power of the pardon? They're about to find out the hard way. Do they remember a woman by the name of Susan McDougal? In 1998 she refused to cooperate in Ken Starr's nutty Whitewater investigation. She wound up doing eighteen months in the slammer. Do Bannon and company beleieve that the punitive side of the law applies only to Democrats? This is going to be interesting.

What happened in Washington D.C. nine months and five days ago marked the first time in our two-hundred and forty-five year history that the USA did not have a peaceful transfer of power. We had a presidential election just prior to the outset of the American civil war - and one during it. Both transfers of power were peaceful. In 1861 and 1865, not a drop of blood was spilled on the streets of Washington. Not so in 2021. If it is revealed that the former president of the "United" States of America had prior knowledge of and took part in what went down on that infamous day, he needs to be prosecuted (as they say) "to the fullest extent of the law" and sent to prison for the rest of his miserable life - or whatever is left of it. It's called "sedition" kiddies. There's something for you to ponder.

Tom Degan​
Goshen, NY


This conversation took place yesterday morning on MSNBC' It really needs to be viewed by everyone in America:

Eugene Robinson is as good as they get.

Friday, October 08, 2021

Dense Pence - No Sense

"I know the media wants to distract from the Biden administration's failed agenda by focusing on one day in January." 

Mike Pence

Do you remember Dan Quayle? Do you remember what a complete and utter laughingstock he was as George H.W. Bush's V.P.? It was always oodles of fun to watch him trying to communicate extemporaneously to the huddled masses. The poor slob never could get the hang of it. He always wound up falling flat on his face - like when he infamously corrected the spelling of a third-grader who had correctly spelled the word,  "potato". In hindsight, these things really shouldn't be held against him. I would be lost without Spell-Check. And although I write fairly well, I have never been particularly good at improvisational speaking. I'm as capable of emanating an  embarrassing gaffe as anyone. It's a blessing that my career in politics was brief - mercifully so.

Dan Quayle was never perceived by anyone as being particularly bright. I am not here to pass judgement on the man's intellectual abilities. The fact of the matter is, he must have had an above average intelligence to get to where he got. I just don't know the answer to that question. Here is what I know as a non-debatable fact: compared to Mike Pence, Quayle is starting to look like Albert Einstein. Seriously.

Back on January 6, I was sending kudos to Pence for doing the right thing by acknowledging the ballots in the electoral college that gave Joe Biden a decided victory over Donald Trump. We now know that Pence was encouraged by certain White House lawyers to overturn the results of a democratic election and that he - at first - had every intention of doing their (and Trump's) naughty bidding. The only thing that stopped him from committing an electoral atrocity was the fact that he was bombarded with private messages that it would be foolish and blatantly unconstitutional to go down that road. One of those messages was from former vice-president J. Danforth Quayle! (Yeah, that's really his name, folks).

Now, in order to get back into good favor with Trump and the MAGA-fools, Pence is tailoring his message to make us believe that what happened in Washington D.C. on January 6 of this year was nothing to get upset about and that congress is wasting  their time and our money by thoroughly investigating the events of that nasty day. Mike Pence is a thoroughly despicable political hack. He knows that if he can only receive the Republican nomination in three years, he will be able to seize the office of the presidency whether he gets the required votes or not. I'm tempted to say, "but that ain't ever gonna happen, folks". I said the same thing five years ago during the months and weeks leading up to Election Day 2016. Anything is possible in Idiot Nation. Anything.

FUN FACT: While the insurrection of January 6, 2021 was happening, and thousands of people outside the capital building were calling for Mike Pence to be hanged, Pence was inside that same building with his wife and family. Nice, huh?

We should do everything possible to ensure that no GOP politician wins the White House in 2024. If that disgusting, cult-of-a-party is ever able to take back the executive branch of our government or either house of congress, this country is through. Do you think that I am exaggerating? Keep voting Republican and let's see what happens.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


by Bob Woodward and Robert Costa.

Costa is the new Bernstein.

Tuesday, October 05, 2021

Almost Legal

I've been using this argument for years. Here is a list of ten noted people who died because of excessive smoking:

Humphrey Bogart
Edward R. Murrow
Nat King Cole
George Harrison
John Huston
Noel Coward
Betty Grable
Walt Disney
Gary Cooper
Peter Jennings

Here is another list. Ten famous people who drank themselves to death:

Tennessee Williams

Jack Kerouac
Truman Capote
Lorenz Hart
Veronica Lake
Bix Beiderbecke
Montgomery Clift
Dylan Thomas
John Barrymore
Errol Flynn

Now give the name of one celebrated person who died from too much grass. You can't do it, can you. Don't worry, neither can I. Not only am I unable to name a single person who died in that matter, I'm not aware of it happening in all recorded human history. Now after decades of the misery they put us through, it's about to be legalized nationwide. We're almost there - be patient.

One night in 1976, I was an eyewitness to a friend of mine being arrested in the parking lot of the local high school for the possession of one joint. Although only a teenager at the time, he ended up doing one year in the county jail for his "offence" against society. That was at the height of New York's idiotic Rockefeller drug laws. So many people of my generation had their lives destroyed for inhaling a substance that is harmful to absolutely no one - not even themselves. That friend of mine died about ten years ago. After doing a year in the can, he was never able to get his life back on track. He eventually succumbed to the rigors of poverty and mental illness. I can't help but wonder if he'd still be alive today had he not been in the wrong place at the wrong time on a long ago summer night so many decades before.

I'm not a pot smoker. I gave up the stuff on my nineteenth birthday - which, coincidentally, was the same day that Elvis Presley passed away. Elvis and I quit drugs at the same moment. The difference being that I did so voluntarily. Thank you. Thank you very much.

Recently, the head shop a quarter of a mile down the road from where I live advertised in its window that it had in stock THC vapes for sale. Legal grass??? How good could it possibly be, I thought? I purchased one -  just
 out of curiosity, you understand. I was amazed at how powerful the stuff was. Truth be told: I was wasted. Listening to the Beatles' White Album while high is still a pretty far out experience (man). The irony is that, once I had tried it, no one was harmed - not even myself. I didn't have the urge to steal from anyone. There was no desire to rob anyone at gunpoint in order to feed my "habit". The only need I had was to take a nap. I did. I woke up after a couple of hours and life went on as before. All is well with the world. I am fine. You are fine, too, I'm sure.

We're about to enter a brave (and slightly weird) new world. Legal grass is an idea that is long overdue. It was made illegal in 1937 when the oil industry figured out that hemp could be made into fuel. Lawmakers implied that the marijuana high would make black men lust after white women. That is why it was outlawed in the first place. Pretty lame excuse, huh? We've been waiting for this moment for eighty-four years. Have a marijuana if you want.

Tom Degan​
Goshen, NY


Are You Experienced?
by The Jimi Hendrix Experience

Recorded in merrie olde England in October of 1966, this was the LP that put Jimi Hendrix on the map. This one was always nice to listen to while toking on a joint and sipping red wine. Right up into the clouds.....

All three members of this band are passed away.