Wednesday, December 28, 2016

And the NRA Applauded

There wasn't much Christmas cheer in Chicago this year. Local media there reported that from last Friday through Sunday 61 people were shot. 11 of them were killed outright and another dozen are in critical condition.

It really shouldn't come as a surprise. So far this year 4,000 Chicagoans have been plugged and 700 have died. All of which means it is a hell of a lot safer for a U.S. service man, or woman to tool around Afghanistan than it is for him, or her to hang out on the south side of the Windy City.

It also means NRA types are running about claiming it is true that stricter gun laws don't stop people from using them. They love to point out that until a few months ago it was illegal to sell hand guns in Chicago. What they don't mention is all you needed to do in order to legally buy a pistol was simply step outside the Chicago city limits--which obviously--scads of people have done.

But, hey. It isn't all Chicago's fault. Politifact looked into the stats nationally. What it found is in the last 10 years 71 Americans have been killed because of acts of terrorism on U.S. soil. During the same time frame, 301,797 have been killed by gun violence. For those of you not up on your long division that is a little over 30,000 American citizens per year.

Of course we are so divided philosophically sometimes we can't even agree on what constitutes an act of terrorism as opposed to a good ol' all American mass shooting. A case in point is the late Omar Mateen.

He is the monster who entered a Florida nightclub last June armed with a Sig Sauer and a Glock. He had bought them two weeks prior to the massacre from a nearby sporting goods store. In the immediate aftermath all those xenophobes who voted for Don Trump ran around waving their arms screaming about unscreened terrorists waltzing across open borders with murder on their minds and in their hearts. Trump's call for a total ban on Muslim immigrants sounded like a perfect idea. Not to mention making the ones here register with the government and wear some sort of tracking chip.

The rest of us wondered how Mateen, who was born in the U.S. of A,  but had been on and off the terrorist watch list could legally get his hands on two guns and a bucketful of ammunition. Much to our surprise it turns out the very same right wing slugs who howl for a ban on Muslim immigrants and the registration of the ones already here are all for allowing people on the watch list to buy as many fucking guns as they want.

As Barack Obama pointed out, "We can stop them from getting on a plane, but not from buying a gun."

So was Omar Mateen a crazy terrorist, or just a nut, ala Adam Lanza? Both. He was a terrorist--at least in his own twisted mind. And at the same time he was simply another in a long line of American lunatics who was able to procure the weapons he used as easily as he could a bunch of bananas.

Given the circumstances, it doesn't take much to figure out the pro gun organizations want to keep firearms readily available to everyone one, not for constitutional reasons, but because they actually like gun violence.

If you don't believe it consider this. In an attempt to slow the carnage, Chicago had passed a ban on the sale of handguns within its city limits. Recently a federal judge ruled the law, "unconstitutional." The NRA immediately issued a statement, "applauding," the ruling.

Yes, that's right, in a town with 700 homicides and counting, it just became easier to get your mitts on a weapon which has no other purpose than to kill, or wound another human being.

And the NRA applauded.



sic vita est



12-28-16

Monday, December 19, 2016

Protecting the Rights of BB Gun Owners

Yesterday the Washington Post ran an online piece which once again proves Americans are fatally in love with guns. Not only the real ones, but replicas as well. In fact, as the Post points out, just like with the genuine article, some of us are getting killed because of faux weapons.

The news outlet's research found that nationwide, in the last two years, police have killed 86 people because they mistook BB guns and other weapon look alikes for the real thing.

Of those 86, 50 were white men and five were women. 38 of the victims had histories of mental illness. 46 of the shootings occurred at night and police claim 60 of the people who were killed pointed their fake guns at them.

53 of the weapons were either BB, or pellet guns. 16 were what is known as Airsoft guns which use compressed air cartridges to shoot plastic BB's. 13 were classified as non working replicas, two were toys, one was a race starter's gun, and the last was a lighter.

So all this mayhem has been caused by a bunch of trigger happy cops, right? Well maybe in some instances, however the whole nightmare is enabled by manufacturers who insist on making their BB guns and toys look exactly like the real thing.

The Post reported an outfit called Umarex USA--which bills itself as, "the king of replicas"--makes air guns which are the mirror images of everything from the Colt 1870 Peacemaker, to a modern Smith and Wesson Military and Police issue semiautomatic. The latter sells for $50 at your local Wal-Mart and in 38 states it's perfectly legal for your kid, no matter what his, or her age is, to buy it.

Well, Jeez, why don't we just get rid of them, or at the least, make sure they're all painted bright orange in order to stop this shit? After all, they don't shoot real bullets, so it shouldn't worry any of the gun nuts should it? Actually those demented fucks oppose even imitation gun control.

The Post says manufacturers such as Sig Sauer, who brags on their web site they make air guns which are perfect replicas of nearly all their deadly weapons and others are busy lobbying against such laws. In addition a bunch known as Gun Owners of America and--you guessed it--the NRA are opposed to any legislation which would force changes in the appearance of these toys which would help police know they aren't looking down the barrel of the real McCoy.

The piece quotes a spokesperson for Gun Owners of America. He condemns such legislative attempts for change because, in his words, "It all arises out of the general animus and media fed fear of anything that has to do with guns."

That's right, it's all the media's fault and besides, who cares about that cop who is responding to a call of a person with a weapon around sundown in a sketchy part of town? Not to mention the kid he, or she sees carrying what looks just like a 9mm Sig Sauer--the one which was used to shoot BB's at tin cans in a vacant lot all afternoon. Given those circumstances it takes only a single second of making either a wrong move, or misinterpretation of intent for tragedy to strike.

Honestly, this is madness beyond belief. People in this country are dying because of a well financed minority and an industry which has as about much credibility as the hucksters who used to tell us there is no evidence cigarettes cause heart disease and cancer. Both groups intimidate law makers by threatening to donate huge amounts of cash to an opposition candidate in the next election, or they simply pay them off.

Indeed, that's what democracy has sunk to in America these days. Our representatives won't do what is obviously right because they are either coerced by brute thugs, or they accept outright bribes. And, given that awful truth, now we now know the real reason we are no longer great, or truly free.


sic vita est



12-19-16


Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Newtown Revisited: The Truth is Adam Lanza Did It

Four years ago today a skinny little guy named Adam Lanza went off his nut in the most deadly fashion imaginable. For reasons no one can truly fathom the first thing he did that morning was shoot his mother, Nancy in the head as she slept. The shot, or shots disfigured her so badly that when police initially discovered her body they weren't even sure it was her.

After he blew the face off his mom the 20 year old Lanza jumped into the family vehicle. He was armed with a Glock, a Sig Sauer, and a Bushmaster 223. He drove over to Sandy Hook Elementary School where, years before, he attended grade school and his mother volunteered for a while. Before he saved everybody a lot of time and trouble by blowing his own diseased brains out he pulled off  500 rounds and murdered 20 children--barely above the age of babies--and six staff members.

Within days, if not hours, messages and YouTube videos were going up on the internet claiming the entire horror was faked. The people who posted that insanity--and still are--now prefer to call themselves the alt-media, rather than conspiracy theorists, or as many of us like to describe them, cruel, and demented idiots.

Think they aren't?

After the murder of Noah Pozner in his first grade class room his father Lenny moved to Florida. Once there he found out about a tenured professor of communications at Florida Atlantic University using a photo of his son online. The professor, James F. Tracy taught a class in conspiracy theories. Mr. Pozner sent Tracy a letter asking him to stop using images of Noah. The response from the educator was a certified letter demanding Lenny Pozner prove his son ever existed.

Pozner wrote an op-ed article for a Florida newspaper talking about the viciousness of such people. Shortly afterward Tracy was canned from his position and promptly blamed his firing on the father of a child who was shot to death for no reason at all. That would be a son who Tracy, at the very least, implied had never been born.

Pozner's action wasn't out of character. He has spent a lot of time in the last four years confronting the yahoos who claim his kid's short life was a work of fiction. In doing so he has pissed off some seriously disturbed people.

One of them is a 57 year old Tampa woman named Lucy Richards. In January of this year she sent Pozner a series of messages. One of them read, "You gonna die, death is coming to you real soon." Another said, "Look behind you, it is death. There is nothing you can do about it."

Apparently she was wrong about that last part. A week ago Lucy Richards was indicted by a grand jury on four felony counts of transmitting threats. She is looking at five years for each charge.

It's about time someone started standing up to these cranks.

A few hours ago, J.B. Nicholas, at the time a photographer for The Daily News, posted a piece on line about this sadistic nonsense. In the article he describes how he snuck through the nearby woods the night of the 14th, after the murders, in order to take photographs of the scene in the school parking lot. He also wrote about Gene Rosen, who lived next door to the school and gave shelter to six terrified children and a bus driver who escaped the carnage that deadly morning.

Nicholas found Rosen in a Newtown diner's restroom three days after the killings and described him as, "broken and sobbing." Later, after a television interview, Rosen began receiving anonymous phone calls from people who accused him of being a, "crisis actor," and a liar.

As for Nicholas, his photographs have been branded as fake by the run amok false flag crowd and he, like Lenny Pozner is fed up with those who claim it was all a sham. As he pointed out none of the Sandy Hook, "truthers," were there, but he was and he knows what happened was real. In his words, "Fuck anyone who says otherwise."

The main excuse for this monstrous behavior has been the government faked the mayhem in Newtown in order to justify a weapons ban and possibly a mass confiscation of citizen's firearms. Well if that was the case we know it didn't work don't we.

Americans are still buying military style weapons at a record clip and no one has been able to ban a single one of them. Hell, congress won't even pass a bill which will enable stricter background checks on the rubes who are just as dependent on them as a crack head is on his, or her glass pipe.

Which brings us back to the murdered mom, Nancy Lanza. Her Christmas gift to her son four years ago was a check. She meant for Adam to buy a new gun with the money. Tragically for her and everyone else, he was too busy to cash it.




12-14-16

Saturday, December 10, 2016

The Precedent For Pizzagate

Now we know who inspired the grotesque fantasy known as, "pizzagate." Or--in the worst case scenario--planted the foul story in the first place.

For those of you not up to speed on the savage and utterly psychotic world of alt-right journalism, " pizzagate," is a thoroughly disproven accusation floating around the internet. It maintains Hillary Rodham Clinton, her former campaign manager, John Podesta, and other high ranking democrats have been running a child sex slave operation out of a Washington D.C. pizza joint in their spare time. It showed up on the world wide web in October just before the election.

The charges were so sordid and insistent it moved a clown from North Carolina named Edgar Welch to march into Comet Ping Pong Pizza last Sunday armed with a hand gun and AR-15. After he shot up the place he surrendered to police because, according to him, he found nothing was going on there except people making and eating pizzas. The alt-right immediately claimed Welch was an actor who was paid by either the mainstream media, or a democratic cabal in order to distract attention from the terrible truth of run amok pedophilia and, or, to discredit their version of the truth.

So what kind of sick fuck would come up with a line of such utter bullshit in the first place?

Well, it turns out, there is precedent for it. Two years ago Russian dissident, Vladimir Bukovsky was arrested in London and charged with possessing and making child pornography. Friday the New York Times reported independent computer forensic experts have concluded the odious images on Bukovsky's PC were planted there by, "unknown," hackers.

There is no doubt in Bukovsky's mind who those hackers were. He was quick to claim it was a Russian cyber operation serving up a dish of what is known as "kompromat," on his computer. Kompromat is the practice of planting compromising and illegal material in order to discredit an enemy of Don Trump's bromance guy, Vladimir Putin. Whoa, that suddenly sounds sort of familiar doesn't it?

And hey, it isn't like Bukovsky is a stranger to what the powers in Russia are willing to do when it comes to silencing dissent. He spent 12 years in a Russian prison because of his criticism of Moscow's severely warped concept of democracy.

Meanwhile Politicus U.S.A. reports all 17 American intelligence agencies are convinced the Russians attempted to rig the presidential election by hacking the democratic party's computers then releasing false and edited emails routed through WikiLeaks.

In fact, the only person who doesn't believe it is president elect, Donald J. Trump. His people issued a caustic statement condemning the CIA, which has come to that very conclusion. It said, "These are the same people who said Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction."

Trump's disdain for the American intelligence community is, no doubt, rooted in his fascination and reliance on the conspiracy theory crowd led by Alex Jones who runs what is called, Info Wars. Well, that and it would be unseemly, even for El Don, to admit he gladly accepted the help of Vlad Putin during the campaign. After all, you can't make America great again while publicly sucking a neo Tsar's uncircumcised cock.

Former NSA and CIA director Michael V. Hayden addressed Trump's attitude this way, "To have a president elect of the United States simply reject the fact based narrative that the intelligence community puts together because it conflicts with his prior assumptions--wow."

Wow indeed.

Yes, welcome to the world of paranoid degenerates, the guy they voted for in droves, and his pal, Vladimir Putin.

Ladies and gentlemen, as you can well guess,  the bar is most definitely open.



sic vita est


12-10-16


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Ed Welch Decides to Get Some Answers

Sunday, Edgar M. Welch of Salisbury, North Carolina decided he was going to get some by God answers for himself. So he grabbed a hand gun and his trusty AR-15, jumped into his vehicle, then headed balls to the wall for Washington D.C.

What spurred the trip is an internet storm of insane bullshit which began just prior to the presidential election and has lasted until this very moment. Ultra right wing conspiracy junkies have dubbed it, "pizzagate."

The word on social media outlets was and is the owner of a place known as Comet Ping Pong Pizza and Clinton campaign manager, John Podesta had been emailing each other mysterious coded messages. The news items making the rounds on Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit claimed when the code was cracked it showed shop owner, James Alefantis, Podesta and Hillary Rodham Clinton were running a child sex slave/trafficking operation in the back room of the joint.

According to Alefantis  after the initial report it didn't take long for all manner of raving loons to start calling his D.C. place of business, threatening him, his family, and employees. In addition people began to write scathing reviews of his store online while leaving demented accusations about what was going on there.

In short order, organizations like the New York Times, Washington Post, and online fact checker, Snopes debunked the nonsense. Of course when they did it simply convinced the conspiracy nuts they were aiding and abetting the diseased goings on.

To reinforce that notion a news release appeared on social media written by Congressman Steven Smith who represents Georgia's 15th district. The Congressman claimed the actual lies were being told by the mainstream media and the depravity of the of the democratic party's leadership was not only genuine, but ongoing.

Apparently a lot of people, including brother Welch, believed the gentleman from Georgia. The only problem is there isn't a member of the House of Representatives named Steven Smith and the 15th Georgia congressional district doesn't even exist.

Later a right wing troll in Florida said he wrote the post as a joke, which was intended to amuse and spur the Times and others to really investigate the pizzagate affair rather than sweeping it under the rug.

During all this madness a dude named Michael Flynn Jr. tweeted, "Until #pizzagate proven false it'll remain a story." He added, "The left seems to forget #PodestaEmails and the many 'coincedences' tied to it."

So why should we care what some fascist crank writes? Well, maybe because Michael Flynn Jr's old man is Lt General Michael Flynn Sr who is Don Trump's nominee to become the national security advisor to the president of the United States.

But, back to our man, Ed Welch. He charged into Comet Ping Pong Pizza and headed straight for the alleged evils taking place in the backroom. Before he did, he pulled off a round just to make sure everyone knew he was serious. Men, women, and their children were sent running out the front door in terror. What Big Eddie found was--you guessed it--nothing. Not even a naughty photograph, or a piece of lewd graffiti.

Later, after he was taken into custody, Welch said he surrendered only because he hadn't found any evidence of wrong doing.

Whoa, isn't that great news for Comet Ping Pong Pizza and nearby establishments which have also been savaged by the witch hunt hysteria?

Not really. The latest news reports from the vile and murky, ultra conservative, Twilight Zone is Welch is nothing more than an actor paid by the mainstream media in order to take attention away from the crimes being committed by the Clintons, Podesta, Alefantis, and many others--liberals all.

Yes, as Mike Flynn knows full well, in the oxygen deprived minds of those who voted for Trump, pizzagate will never be proven false. It can't be, because no matter how logically you walk those sick fucks through the actual evidence, you will have done nothing, but convince them you're part of the conspiracy too. Hey, that's their world. Welcome to it.

Indeed.



12-6-16

Sunday, December 4, 2016

A Rotten November

November was a rotten month. It was filled with disaster, disease, and tragedy on a scale not personally dealt with in a long time.

My wife's brother in law and a friend of mine, Kenny Quenzer celebrated his youngest daughter's wedding in early August. Virginia and I attended the ceremony and reception afterward. That night we drank far too much wine while watching he and his wife, VA's sister, Janet dance the evening away during the celebration.

In early September Kenny suddenly began having severe short term memory problems. By October he was diagnosed with a virulent form of brain cancer. On November 3rd we attended his funeral. He was 58 years old.

A few days later I found myself coming down with a monster sinus infection which quickly morphed into a case of strep throat so severe and persistent it caused not one, but two trips to a couple of different physicians. The truth is, after decades of smoking, when you get a searing sore throat that refuses to go away and it feels as if you have a knot the size of a raisin lodged firmly in the middle of it--which can't be hacked up, or swallowed--things tend to get a little edgy. Especially after you've just witnessed the swift demise of a guy who, only three months before, was gliding smoothly across a dance floor.

The terrible tragedy, personal grief, and angst of November was, of course, set against the back drop of the election. You know, the one where a narcissistic, lying, thug was chosen to be president of these United States of America.

And it didn't take long for El Donald to make sure we knew he is everything we thought him to be.

First, he managed to enrage his most ardent followers by deciding not to pursue the prosecution of Hillary Rodham Clinton. It seems all those promises and chants of, "Lock her up," were for naught. Yeah, the rubes bought the spiel, now screw 'em.

Then, proving he is a true populist, Trump chose, Steven Mnuchin to be his nominee for Secretary of the Treasury. A few years ago Mnuchin bought a failed home lender institution, IndyMac, from the FDIC. IndyMac was known for its predatory loan practices. Mnuchin renamed the outfit OneWest and turned it into what has been described as a foreclosure machine.

Under, Brother Mnuchin, OneWest became so ruthless they foreclosed on a 90 year old Lakeland, FL woman, Ossie Lofton because she owed them 27 cents. In addition the FDIC ended up paying the company $1.2 billion for properties OneWest's management deemed too worthless to try to unload.

Right--so much for small government and fewer regulations.

Now word comes that Trump is considering disgraced general David Petraeus for a cabinet position, possibly Secretary of State. Petraeus was briefly head of the CIA. His time on the job in Langley was limited because it was found he was fucking his biographer, Paula Broadwell. Both Broadwell and Petraeus were married to, let's say, other people, at the time of their affair.

The FBI discovered the sordid goings on after Broadwell sent a series of threatening emails to Florida socialite Jill Kelley, under a pseudonym, warning her to stay away from Petraeus.

While this is happening the big orange guy is getting on the phone with a wide variety of people, such as Rodrigo Duterte, the leader of the Philippines. Well, why not? It might be a good idea to schmooze with a dude who believes the answer to his country's drug problems are para military death squads and back street executions. After all, it's never too early to get a few good tips on how to pull off shit like that in say, Chicago and get away with it.

Yes, it was a rotten November and the prospects for a better 2017 are slim to none. No one around here is getting younger and Trump looks to have about as much negotiating talent as Hart Bochner's character, Harry Ellis in the movie, "Die Hard." In brief, it appears he is a cheap jack real estate salesman unaware he is chatting up prospective tenants who would--given the opportunity--burn down the property just because that is what they do.

Indeed.



sic vita est


12-4-16

Monday, November 21, 2016

Two Months Out and Things Begin to Get Ugly

We are still two months out from the inauguration of America's first openly proud fascist president and things have already begun to get ugly.

Trump surrogates are talking about how there have been historical precedents which could be used to justify the establishment of a, "registry," listing immigrants coming in from countries where terrorist groups are active. In the words of Carl Higbie, a former spokesperson for the pro Trump super pac, Great America, "We've done it based on race--we've done it based on religion." In an interview with Megyn Kelly, Highbie wouldn't go so far as to endorse internment camps, but he did mention the WWII era roundup and forcible detainment of Japanese Americans as one of those precedents.

In the mean time, Vice President Elect, Mike Pence has said the incoming administration will not rule out water boarding and other means of, enhanced interrogation techniques. It remains unknown if the new administration would limit the use of such methods--which could lead to American troops and intelligence operatives being charged with war crimes--to enemy combatants in places like Iraq, or if the new administration would be willing to subject a  U.S. citizen to such treatment after he, or she walks out of a mosque in, let's say, Edmond, Oklahoma.   

Also last week two Episcopal churches were vandalized. The Church of Our Savior in Hillandale, Maryland, which has a large number of Hispanics in its congregation, had the words, "Trump Nation Whites Only," spray painted in two places on the grounds. The first was on a brick wall bordering the church's garden and the second was on the back of a banner which advertised the times of Spanish language Holy Eucharists. The banner was also slashed with a knife.

In Bean Blossom, Indiana, St. David's Church had the words, "Fag church and Heil Trump" spray painted on two different walls. On a third was a swastika. Since their man is the first official Info Wars/conspiracy theorist candidate it didn't take long for Trump supporters to begin accusing those devious Anglicans of committing a couple of, "false flag operations." You know, they defaced their own places of worship in order to make it look like Trumpists are running amok.

Meanwhile El Don's followers launched a wave of enraged twitter attacks against, @HamiltonTheatre. It was their response to a cast member of the play, "Hamilton," reading a pro democracy and diversity statement during a curtain call to, Mike Pence who was in the audience.

The vindictive tweets began after the big orange guy took to twitter claiming the producers and cast of, "Hamilton," went out of their way to harass, Pence. The President Elect demanded an immediate apology and because he's Donald Trump who, at his core, is a petty bully, he, couldn't help but label the critically acclaimed and wildly popular production as, "overrated."

Since most of Trump's devotees are too stupid and lazy to do on line research and lack anything even resembling impulse control, much of the vitriol was wasted. The New York production of "Hamilton," where the actor made his brief speech has the twitter account @HamiltonMusical. @HamiltonTheatre belongs to the Hamilton Theatre in, you guessed it,  Hamilton, Ontario, Canada. They are currently running a stage adaptation of the cult film, "Toxic Avenger."

Right now the only glimmer of light to come out of this head long dive down the dark hole of xenophobic nationalism is that most of us who cast ballots on election day actually aren't nuts. As of today Hillary Rodham Clinton is ahead in the nationwide vote by 1.5 million. The margin of her real time popular lead is another truth which conspiracy theorists are desperately trying to disprove by just making shit up.

Although those of us with functioning brains know Clinton's popular lead is real, it is of little comfort. In fact, such knowledge only deepens the bitterness. Despite her win when it comes to the number of total of votes cast we are still stuck with an unstable, narcissistic, loon who openly panders to all that's evil in America. And, although many--especially those of European descent--might survive his reign, the real question is, will the republic?

Tragically, at least from here, at this moment, it appears the odds of that happening aren't particularly good.



sic vita est




11-21-16


Monday, November 14, 2016

The Trump Transition: Waiting on Those New Hugo Boss Uniforms

While we wait to see what kind of deal Don Trump's transition team made with the fashion house, Hugo Boss for official Trump uniforms and accessories the president elect is beginning to name names and threaten to kick ass.

He went on CBS's, "60 Minutes," Sunday to announce, if you're Hispanic, you need to start looking over your shoulder in the very near future. According to Trump, "What we are going to do is get the people that are criminal and have criminal records, gang members, drug dealers, where a lot of these people, probably two million, it could be even three million, we are getting them out of our country, or we are going to incarcerate."

Hey, don't blame me for the twisted syntax, that's exactly how he worded the statement. Then, he added, "But we're getting them out of our country, they are here illegally." Finally he said, after the border is secure immigration officials will begin to make a "determination" about remaining undocumented immigrants in the United States.

If he intends to keep his word, which was pledged endlessly during the campaign, we already know what that, "determination," will be. At this moment the only questions unanswered are how violent the rioting will become in response to mass deportations and, will Donald Trump let a little thing like due process of law get in his way when he begins them.

Today the Washington Post is reporting various groups, such as the Anti-Defamation League and the NAACP, among others, are bemoaning Trump's appointment of Stephen Bannon as White House senior counsel and chief strategist. Bannon used to run Breitbart News. It's an on line publication which once ran a story saying birth control pills make women unattractive and crazy then later called conservative Weekly Standard editor, Bill Kristol a, "renegade Jew." The prevailing belief is Bannon's proximity to the oval office will empower white nationalist groups.

Actually white nationalists were empowered as soon as the election results came in. Just ask them in North Carolina. Even before Bannon was appointed a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan announced it planned to conduct a Trump, "victory parade," on December 3rd.

Meanwhile, the Trumpists are cracking down on people who don't have nice things to say about their guy. Mr. Frank Navarro, a teacher with 40 years experience was suspended from his job at Mountain View High School--go Spartans--in California. The suspension came after a parent accused Navarro of saying Don Trump was an Adolph Hitler. Navarro denied it, but did fess up to comparing how the two men came to power. You know, like pointing out both ran campaigns promising to expel foreigners and make their nations, "great again."

Back in North Carolina the Raleigh NBC affiliate heavily censored Dave Chappelle's opening monologue on the last "Saturday Night Live" installment. His remarks were highly critical of, Donald Trump. WRAL claimed it censored Chappelle not because of the content of what he was saying, but his use of banned words.

Right.

Finally we have Trump denying the undeniable once again. He took to his recently freed up twitter account and wrote, "New York Time states today that DJT believes more countries should acquire nuclear weapons. How dishonest are they. I never said this."

Actually, Don, on couple of different occasions, you said countries like Japan and South Korea should have nukes in lieu of U.S. troops based in their nations. We have it on tape. Would you like to see it?

Look for shipments of those Trump uniforms from Hugo Boss to arrive shortly. They're very good at it because they've had a lot of practice. Let's face it, after designing and manufacturing those cool unis Nazi party members wore in Germany a number of decades ago, they know how to deliver the goods, not to mention great style.

And, yes--that's exactly where we are at right now.



11-14-16

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The New Look Amerika, a Wholly Owned Subsidiary of Trump Properties: If You're Black, Hispanic, or Muslim, Sorry There are no Vacancies

Things started to feel out of whack around Halloween weekend. The polls had gone schizophrenic. The results of varying surveys produced such conflicting data it seemed as if the pollsters had been talking to people not just in Philadelphia, but also Ulan Bator. Even more disturbing was the news early voting in heavily democratic areas was a fraction of what it had been four years ago.

Then came that slime Anthony Weiner and a FBI Director who seemed so desperate to keep his job come January he tried to mollify not just Don Trump, but at the last minute, Hillary Clinton. James Comey drove the Trumpster and his people into orgasmic spasms when he announced a trove of, "new," Clinton emails had been discovered on Weiner's computer just as serious pre-election day voting was beginning. After this shocking news roiled the public and media, only slightly more than 24 hours before the polls opened, Comey issued a statement which basically said, "Oops, never mind. There's nothing of interest here."

By yesterday evening the sense of impending doom had become overwhelming despite the steadfast optimism of my wife. It worsened when the first returns began to trickle in. Yes, they were from states no one expected Secretary Clinton to carry, but her numbers were horrifically minuscule compared to Trump's.

MSNBC's talking heads kept talking different demographics, but even those looked ominous. Clinton's lead among white college educated persons wasn't nearly the margin Trump held among people without college educations and--as anyone who can count will tell you--there are a hell of a lot more people out there who never went to college than did.

So now we're stuck with the decadent, lying, bastard for at least four years. The only possible good news to come from this nightmare is he promised the vile racist fools who voted for him everything from a wall, to mass deportations and, state sponsored religious intolerance. Now, he'll have to deliver on all of it and when he doesn't, or can't the mob will turn on him. He will, in their eyes, have become the same type of professional Washington insider they've howled so loudly about for over a year.

That's in addition to the 20 plus million people he's going to royally piss off when he deep sixes their health care. Tragically, because of the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, many of them might not make it to 2020.

There has been talk, both serious and otherwise, of democrats moving to places like Canada en masse now that Donald Trump is set to fuck up the country beyond all recognition. A friend of mine says his personal preference is Costa Rica, but then he likes to surf. While I'll admit I've thought about it, for a couple of reasons I think I'll stick around.

Yes, it is going to get bad, perhaps Great Depression bad. However, the truth is if someone is going to move it needs to be those poor souls living in Estonia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Ukraine. That's because as soon as Donald John Trump finishes giving Vladimir Putin a blow job, he's going to tell him, go ahead--invade whoever you want in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. We no longer care what  Russia does, or how they do it.

Indeed. Welcome to the new look Amerika, a vassal of Russia and a wholly owned subsidiary of Trump Properties. If you're Black, Hispanic, or Muslim, sorry, there are no vacancies.





11-9-16

Monday, November 7, 2016

Alina Fitzpatrick: So Much For Justice in Oklahoma City

Things were taking a dark turn for Alina Fitzpatrick five autumns ago. The 17 year old had dropped out of Putnam City North high school and begun taking classes through the Putnam City virtual high school program. The word was she had left North because of bullying. Officials of the Putnam City school district, ever protective of their precious public image, quickly responded by saying they had absolutely no record of her being bullied.

There were also rumors that a strange man had begun following her for unknown reasons. In addition there was a report she had started to receive disturbing calls on her cell phone from either the stalker, or some other stranger. The calls had become so bothersome, according people who knew her, she changed her number.

Around 10pm on Friday, November 4th, 2011 she was dropped off near the corner of NW 24th and Western Ave. on the near northwest side of Oklahoma City. Other unnamed persons said she was oddly vague about who she was going to visit that evening. Whether she actually was, or wasn't doesn't matter now. Because that night, Alina Fitzpatrick walked into the darkness and never returned.

Not long after she was last seen her cell phone was turned off and calls were routed directly to her voice mail. When she didn't return home her frantic parents immediately launched a search. Posters were stapled to telephone poles and a Facebook page was established asking for help. It is still there, untouched for half a decade now.

On November 9th an unnamed man and his mother drove out to some property they owned near NE 50th and Anderson Road in far eastern OKC. After arriving they discovered the nude body of a girl. Within a couple of days it was identified as Alina Fitzpatrick.

It didn't take long after that for the investigation to bog down and then, for all practical purposes, end.

The fall of 2011 was a deadly one. Two other young women had already been murdered. The death of Carina Saunders was particularly horrific and the media and public were consumed by it. In its shadow the murders of Kelsey Bransby and Alina Fitzpatrick--to almost everyone, but family and friends--paled in comparison. In fact, after initial reports, news of the Bransby investigation was utterly non-existent in the local newspaper and on television stations.

Initially there was some public speculation the Saunders and Fitzpatrick cases might somehow be connected, but authorities quickly denied any sort of link between the two.

Then came the coroner's report. State Medical Examiner, Chai S. Choi said Alina Fitzpatrick had suffered blunt force trauma to the head and had numerous scrapes, bruises, and lacerations which occurred around the time of her death. She also had paper, or cotton like material stuffed in her mouth. However, none of the obvious wounds were serious enough to kill her. What Choi also found was, 0.96 micrograms of meth per milliliter of blood in Fitzpatrick's heart. He concluded such an amount might have caused an overdose.

His final assessment was, "There are apparently suspicious circumstances surrounding her death." But, he refused to call it a homicide.

As soon as the report went public you could hear file cabinet drawers being slammed shut at OKC police headquarters.

On January 20th, 2012 OKCPD spokesperson Sgt Jennifer Wardlow summed up the department's attitude perfectly. When asked by a reporter what the status of the case was she replied, "It's not considered a homicide, but we're keeping an open file on it."

Sgt Wardlow's callousness struck a nerve somewhere. Nine days later Captain Dexter Nelson told the media, "Homicide is just a legal term. You investigate them (homicides and suspicious deaths) the same way." He added the department needed help from the public to solve the mystery.

To my knowledge, Nelson's remarks over four years ago was the last time Alina Fitzpatrick and her death has been mentioned in the Oklahoma City print and broadcast media.

In April of 2016 an unknown person commented on a two year old post of Ghost Shirt Papers which concerned Alina Fitzpatrick. Using the moniker, "Anonymous," he or she wrote, "The police were told who did it. He was in jail on other charges and still got released."

Without any verification, or evidence there can be no telling if "Anonymous" knows what he, or she is talking about, or is just another internet troll who hasn't a clue, or life.

Whichever the case, what we do know is Alina Fitzpatrick was stripped naked, physically abused, and dumped in a weed strewn field with a gag stuffed in her mouth. We also know the Oklahoma City cops stopped giving a shit about her as soon as they read the words, "possible overdose," in the ME's report.

Yes, so much for justice in Oklahoma City. Sometimes it's just more convenient to write off a young girl's life, rather than pursue the beast who took it.

.


sic vita est



11-7-16

Friday, October 28, 2016

So Ends the Strange and Gruesome Saga of Jaymie Adams: Joe Cyr Gets Life Without Parole

I am letting any willing man come and have his way with my wife with a little compensation for us to help with our holiday funding we need. So if this sounds hot and fun for you then just email me. We have a hotel for the night and can host for anyone.

A Craigslist ad composed and posted by Justin Adams in early December, 2011




While no one will ever confuse Justin Adams' writing skills with, say, F. Scott Fitzgerald he did get his message across.

According to his testimony his wife, Jaymie had been steadily pulling down tricks on the 9th and 10th of December, 2011. Late the second evening she drove to Midwest City to meet with a man who had been calling and texting her about prices. His name was Joe Cyr. It would be the last time anyone saw her alive.

A group of dirt bikers found her body on January 7th, 2012 in far southeast Oklahoma City. She had been stabbed 29 times and her jaw was broken in three places.

Yesterday, a jury of 11 women and one man found Joseph Richard Cyr guilty of two counts of 1st degree murder. The first was for Jaymie Adams and the second was for her two month old unborn fetus. They gave him two life terms without the possibility of parole.

So ends the strange and gruesome saga of Jaymie Adams. She was the fourth woman murdered in the OKC metro area that fall and winter. The first was Carina Saunders, then Kelsey Bransby, and the third was, Alina Fitzpatrick.

Two of Bransby's friends were implicated in her shooting death and found guilty. The OSBI is still working the Saunders' murder, having taken it over after the Bethany police screwed the pooch so thoroughly no one could tell which end was up. Fitzpatrick's death in early November was almost immediately filed away and forgotten. Rather than call the case a homicide, investigators classified it as "suspicious." Apparently that's the term Oklahoma City police use when they find the nude body of a teenage girl in a field with a gag stuffed in her mouth.

Immediately after Jaymie Adams' body was found her husband began babbling a series of lies in an attempt to cover up the truth he was nothing more than a two bit pimp and his wife was a hooker. All it got him was the focus of police attention.

Justin Adams was initially charged with her murder, but police and the DA's office couldn't make it stick. Then along came Joe Cyr.

During interviews Cyr admitted he had been texting and calling Adams on the 10th, but maintained he didn't actually hook up with her. By April of 2013 police had DNA evidence and were convinced Cyr was the guy.

At the trial the defense admitted Cyr had lied to the cops about meeting her, but said the sex between them was a consensual business deal after which both parties went their separate, merry, ways. The argument was the defendant simply didn't want to admit he had sex with a hooker and he was scared.

The prosecution brought in two female witnesses who claimed the accused had a dark fetish which involved getting women pregnant without their consent. According to the assistant DA, Cyr snapped after Adams insisted he use a condom, then resisted his advances when he refused.

Defense attorneys pointed out that despite the prosecution's assertion Adams left in Cyr's truck there was absolutely none of her DNA, blood, or hair found in his vehicle.

The jury didn't buy it. Cyr's DNA in the body sealed the deal. It took them seven hours to convict and come to an agreement on his sentence.

Kyle Schwab of The Oklahoman reported that as Joe Cyr was led out of the courtroom after the verdict, he turned to relatives and said, "It's okay."

No, it really isn't. Jaymie Adams is still dead. Her goof of a husband, who testified it was her idea to start hooking, is serving a 10 year probation for manslaughter because he facilitated her murder. Now Joseph Richard Cyr is going away for the rest of his life.

How can any of that be okay?

I didn't think so.

Ladies and gentlemen, for obvious reasons, the bar is open.


10-28-16

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Ominous Signs Everywhere

At the moment there are ominous signs sprouting up everywhere.

Hillary Rodham Clinton appears to be slipping both in Florida and Nevada. At the same time early voting in heavily democratic northern Ohio is less than half of what it was four years ago. These disturbing revelations for Mrs. Clinton arrive as conflicting national polls are muddling the waters when it comes to what the real final election numbers will be. Despite this seemingly positive development, Donald Trump is ratcheting up his claims the election will be rigged. At the same time he is continuing to urge his supporters to commit acts of poll place vigilantism in what he calls, "certain areas."

When it comes to those, areas, he is fond of telling his supporters, "You know where I mean." The threat of election day violence is so palpable in a few places, there are reports some schools, which serve as voting venues, have decided to cancel classes for the day.

Meanwhile, Trump's vitriolic rhetoric and unprecedented paranoia have whipped his followers into a frenzy the likes of which hasn't been seen since 1860.

Former tea party/alt-right Illinois congressman, Joe Walsh, who became a radio host after he was thoroughly thrashed by Tammy Duckworth one term into his career, sent out this tweet, "On November 8th I'm voting for Donald Trump. On November 9th, if Trump loses, I'm grabbing my musket."

CNN correspondent, Jake Tapper immediately asked Walsh, "What exactly does that mean?"

Walsh's response was, "It means protesting. Participating in acts of civil disobedience. Doing what it takes to get our country back."

When someone warned Walsh that such language could be construed as advocating an armed response to the results of a legal election he responded, "I don't think a musket would do much good these days, but it's time for civil disobedience on the right."

Walsh is the same vicious clown who in July tweeted, "3 Dallas cops killed, 7 wounded. This is now war. Watch out Obama. Watch out black lives matter punks. Real America is coming after you."

It isn't just Joe Walsh either. The Boston Globe grabbed a quote from Trump supporter, Dan Bowman while he was at one of those raucous rallies El Don loves so much. Bowman said, "If she (Clinton) is in office I hope we can start a coup. She should be in prison, or shot. We're going to have a revolution and take them out of office. There's going to be a lot of bloodshed. But that's what it's going to take. I would do whatever I can for my country."

Well here's something you can do for your country, Dan--stop advocating treason. Hey, it's just a thought.

It has previously been said here and in other places, we are witnessing the end of an age. The days of America being run exclusively by white guys, for white guys, and to the exclusion and detriment of practically everybody else who lives here are coming to a close.

Obviously people like Walsh and Bowman aren't taking the news well.

And, because they aren't, they're willing to let their denial and rage lead them into the murky whirlpool of conspiracy theories and ultimately to threats of participating in violent revolt. Doing so provides them with an excuse to avoid coming to grips with the new national demographic and, in the end, continuing to participate in a legitimate democracy.

All of which leaves us to wonder, if America is no longer great--just how does their level of brute racism and sedition make the republic that way again?

No doubt the answer to the question can only be found in--to paraphrase Jim Morrison-- the squirming like a toad brain of, Donald John Trump.



sic vita est



10-27-16

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Two Weeks Left: November 8th Can't Get Here Quck Enough

With two weeks left before the election Mr. Donald John Trump is running completely amok. Lies and half truths are flying out of the big orange guy nonstop now. It is a level of desperate deception unprecedented in American national politics.

Yesterday he tweeted, "We are winning and the press is refusing to report it. Don't let them fool you--get out and vote #draintheswamp on November 8th." He also claimed the democrats are making up fake polls to suppress his support. Then, later in the day, in front of some Florida farmers he claimed it was actually the media who is promoting "phony polls." In true Trump fashion he failed to name any of these faked polls, or the news organizations behind them.

This sudden distrust of polling comes directly on the heels of his assertion, "every poll" showed he won the third presidential debate--one of them going so far as to say over 90% of the people asked said he won it.

In fact he invoked more unnamed polls also on Monday when he said, "Polls show us close in New Hampshire, Colorado, and Pennsylvania. Winning just one of those states would lead us to victory."

Jeez, make up your mind will you, Don. Or, at the very least give it a day before you change your mind about something.

On Sunday he went on TV in Florida to complain about the media. He said, "England has a system where if they are wrong things happen." They do indeed and Americans found it so distasteful we had a revolution so those things wouldn't happen here. It is why there is a first amendment to the constitution guaranteeing it.

NBC reports that on Monday he told another Florida TV outlet the United States military has, "conceptually" endorsed him. It is unclear how he received this information. What is perfectly clear though is the United States armed forces are not permitted to endorse anyone, conceptually, or other wise. In fact the founding fathers were so edgy about the military getting involved in elections they made sure its commander in chief would always be a civilian. As is the Secretary of Defense and the secretaries under him, or her who run each of the branches.

Well these are details which just get in the way and that has never stopped our Don. He is still claiming he has been endorsed by the federal agency known as ICE. That would be Immigration and Customs Enforcement. The agency itself, like the military can't endorse anyone. The actual endorsement Trump got was from the National Immigration and Customs Enforcement Council. It's a union which represents around 5,000 of ICE's 20,000 plus employees.

Brother Don also claims he has the support of almost every police department in the nation. Again on Monday, he tweeted he had just received an endorsement from the St. John's County (FL) Sheriff's Department. It was news to them. After learning of Trump's tweet the department quickly went on both Facebook and Twitter to say it hasn't endorsed any one.

No wonder WikiLeaks hasn't released damaging emails from the Trump camp. To do so would be completely redundant. Let's face it, all you have to do to catch the bastard in a lie is listen to what he is saying at any given moment. He doesn't even try to cover them up--which says a lot about what Donald Trump really thinks about the American public. And it has from day one of his fetid campaign.

Yes, November 8th can't get here quick enough. Maybe then we will finally be rid of this gruesome werewolf once and for all. 



sic vita est


10-25-16

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Round Three Goes to Hillary Clinton as Trump Looks To Be On the Ropes

The final debate is over now and this presidential election is officially in the home stretch. As it comes down to the wire it is increasingly apparent the luxury cruise ship S.S. Trump is taking on heavy water and listing precariously.

A CNN/ORC snap poll taken immediately after the proceedings in Las Vegas showed 52% of the people who saw it believed Hillary Rodham Clinton won the affair compared to 39% who thought Donald Trump did. There can be little doubt sometime before today is over Brother Trump will say the results of survey were rigged.

Why wouldn't he? He has a long, proud, history of saying things are rigged when they don't break his way. He did in high school when he accused a study partner of cheating on a chemistry test after the kid got a better grade on it than he did. He howled about the Emmy awards being rigged when his show, "The Apprentice," either didn't win, or was nominated. Hell, the guy spent the entire primary season complaining the GOP nomination process was rigged. His bellyaching continued right up to the moment in Cleveland when he won the damned thing.

Now, as we all know, he's saying it's the general election which will be rigged. He is fixated on the notion, not because of any verifiable facts, but because his campaign is in deep shit. No amount of proof, or indisputable data can, or will dissuade him from this conclusion.

Why? Because his run amok narcissism won't allow it. In his demented brain, the only way Donald John Trump can lose at anything is because dark forces plot against him.

This monstrous ego is what led him to self immolate last night. When asked by Chris Wallace if he would accept the election results if he lost he said, "I will look at it at the time. I'm not looking at anything now. I'll look at it at the time."

The dumbstruck Wallace even offered him a second chance to get it right, but Trump went all in by saying he'd keep not only Wallace, but the nation "in suspense."

Secretary Clinton immediately called the answer, "horrifying." The post debate chatter last night was dominated by shock and speculation over what Trump's words would mean for the nation after the election if he refused to concede defeat.

It isn't clear what Trump was trying to accomplish by saying what he did. However, the immediate affect of it was to allow the talking heads, especially on MSNBC, to avoid admitting that for the first half hour, Donald Trump actually looked and sounded more presidential than he has in the past 18 months. It isn't that he necessarily won the first half hour, but at least he stuck to the issues and articulated them as well as any other conservative might.

Of course, Trump being--well--Trump, it went down hill from there.

It was quickly obvious that beyond right wing talking points about the Supreme Court, gun control, and abortion Trump's depth of knowledge regarding issues paled in comparison to Mrs. Clinton's.

Her mastery of details seemed to leave him confused and defensive and opened him up to a series of sharp jabs which, if he had a response at all, it seemed to come straight from a 6th grade school yard.

When she said Putin liked him because he wanted a puppet in the White House, Trump's only answer was, "No puppet. No puppet. You're the puppet. No, you're the puppet."

After she suggested he would be trying to get out of paying taxes, he leaned into the microphone and said, "Such a nasty woman."

Ah yes, so much for looking presidential.

It became so bad, after Clinton attacked his attitudes toward women and he replied, "No one has more respect for women than I do," the audience laughed.

My God, what must have been going through his mind at the moment? Whatever it was, the ego was back this morning. Earlier today at a rally in Ohio he told the faithful he'd absolutely accept the results of the election--if he wins.

Even though Don Trump won't admit it, he knows he lost last night. We can be sure he believes it, because in a tweet today he hinted the debate had been--yes, you guessed it--rigged. He wrote Mrs. Clinton received a question to be asked in advance, thereby letting her rehearse her response. The Commission on Presidential Debates quickly sent out an email stating the only person in the world who knew the questions to be asked was the moderator, Chris Wallace.

When faced with the truth, El Don, in true Trump fashion, walked back the accusation by claiming he was referring to a town hall meeting held during the democratic primaries. That would be one he didn't participate in, because, you know, he's a republican, so he wasn't there.

The election is less than three weeks away. Donald Trump looks to be on the ropes, flailing away with dead arms at an energized foe who is up on her toes, as she bobs, weaves, and relentlessly delivers left hooks to the body.

Will there be a knock out punch? Probably not. But, Hillary Rodham Clinton, at this late date, is so far ahead on points only an unforeseen catastrophe will prevent her from winning the bout.

At least that's the call from this side of the ring.




10-20-16

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The 2016 Presidential Campaign: Weirdness to the Extreme

The madness is building to a crescendo of unbelievable proportions.

Out in Phoenix the Arizona Republic newspaper endorsed a democratic candidate running in the presidential election for the first time in 125 years. Since then reporters for the paper, who had nothing to do with the decision, have received death threats. Members of the publication's door to door sales force, who had even less to do with it, have said they've been screamed at and spit on. There have also been callers who hope a Trump administration, once in power, will toss the constitution out the window and close the media outlet. If that doesn't work, they expressed their feelings, in the strongest of terms, the entire place should be burned down.

Of course the craziness in AZ pales in comparison to what happened in Orange County, N.C. on October 16th. That day the GOP's local headquarters actually was firebombed and severely damaged. The grotesque fools who perpetrated the crime are still on the loose as the FBI and local authorities investigate what amounts to an act of terrorism.

Meanwhile republican vice presidential candidate Mike Pence is asserting Donald Trump's claims the election will be rigged are based on his perception the media is biased in favor of Hillary Clinton--not because of voter fraud.

Obviously Governor Pence needs to check with his boss. Yesterday Trump tweeted, "Of course there is large scale voter fraud happening on and before election day. Why do republican leaders deny what is going on? So naive."

The big orange guy isn't the only one who thinks that way. A recent poll found nearly half of his supporters think their votes won't be counted accurately. In fact they are so convinced of election day chicanery, at a recent rally, Milwaukee Sheriff David Clark shouted to the cheering throng--when it comes to stopping voter fraud--"It's time for pitchforks and torches."

Today, The Guardian is reporting, Mike Roman has been named as Trump's head of poll security. Roman was once chief of the Koch brothers now disbanded, internal intelligence agency. He is best known for promoting a video of alleged voter intimidation in 2008 by two members of the New Black Panther Party.

The Guardian story quotes, University of California-Irvine election law professor, Rick Hasen as saying, (Roman) "...has been somebody who has been more than willing to put forth more outrageous statements about voter fraud and the election process. I don't consider him a very responsible voice among republicans on this question and I'm not surprised that Trump would be using him for polling related efforts."

The next step is for Trump zealots to challenge the ballots of every minority citizen who enters voting places on election day.

Then we come to Vladimir Zhirinovsky, a Russian nationalist and sometime Vlad Putin proxy. He had this to say during a Reuters interview, "Americans voting for a president on November 8th must realize they are voting for peace on the planet earth if they vote for Trump. But if they vote for Hillary it's war. It will be a short movie. There will be Hiroshimas and Nagasakis every where."

What does it say about a republican candidate for president of the United States when he is openly supported by a toady of the de-facto Russian dictator?

Zhirinovsky's endorsement came just prior to El Don saying that, if elected, he would meet Putin before he is inaugurated. Presumably the trip would be to thank the former KGB man for his help with the email shit and say something along the lines of, "Go ahead, do what you want. I could care less about Ukraine and the Baltic states."

Just in case you were wondering, the sound you hear late at night is Ronald Reagan spinning in his grave.

Yes it has become weird to the extreme. It isn't going to stop after November 8th either. If Trump loses, even if he doesn't come out and say a fix was in, his supporters are going to believe it. That's what happens when most of the rubes who think you're great are also convinced the whole world is run by the Bilderberg Group, the Trilateral Commission, and ultimately, the Illuminati.

All of which begs the question, how is it we've sunk to this level of insanity? Honestly, at this point, I'm not sure even the Good Lord knows.



sic vita est



10-18-16

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Carina Saunders: Five Years Later There Are More Things Than We Will Ever Know

Five years ago on this date animal control officers were prowling through a field behind a Homeland grocery store in the Oklahoma City suburb of Bethany. They were searching for feral cats. What they found was the dismembered body of 19 year old Carina Saunders stuffed in a duffel bag.

She had been reported missing by her family a little over two weeks earlier. News accounts at the time said she was last seen near I-40 and Rockwell Ave. climbing into a SUV driven by a gray haired man in his forties.

Yesterday, the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation held a news conference to reassure everyone they were still trying to find out who perpetrated the crime. They made pleas to the public for help and announced they were offering a $10,000 reward for information leading to the recovery of a phone video supposedly showing Saunders' murder.

Thanks to the brutality of her death and the possibility some accomplice decided to tape it, the case of Carina Saunders has both fascinated and horrified the OKC metro area for half a decade. Rumors and facts swirled wildly in the media following the discovery of her decapitated body. So much so they have become nearly impossible to separate.

Initially, the 31 member Bethany Police Department was running the show. Detectives, Jack Jencks and Austin Warfield were in charge of the investigation. To say they were in over their heads from the beginning is an understatement.

Within months at least 12 different names were connected in one way, or another to the murder. Among them was Tia Downour. It was initially reported Ms. Downour had seen part of the phone video. That morphed into hearsay. Downour quickly claimed she had been told by an acquaintance, Mindy Cottier she was the one who had actually seen the video.

When the investigation began to unravel an attorney, Scott Adams, who was representing one of the witnesses, was quoted as saying, "She certainly said she saw a video, but the problem with that is I never saw any proof of that and neither did police."

During the Wednesday news conference, OSBI director, Stan Florence said his agency, "...has a strong belief there is in existence a video of the murder. We have strong reason to believe that video still exists."

In July 2012 Luis Ruiz and Jimmy Lee Massey were charged with the crime. But, it didn't take long for everyone to realize the Bethany PD had utterly screwed the pooch. In March 2013 The Oklahoman reported, their, "Probable cause affidavits contained conflicting witness statements and did not support the evidence."

Ultimately the charges against both Ruiz and Massey were dropped and the Bethany cops turned the case over to the OSBI. Jencks and Warfield were fired, then reinstated, even though Jencks faced charges of stealing controlled substances from the Bethany property room.

Since then the only new information released by the OSBI came yesterday when they announced two tidbits. First, Florence told the media his agency was in possession of a security video tape from Newcastle Casino. He said it shows Saunders getting into a four door red Ford pick up truck with a brush guard and lights on the cab. That was October 8th, five days before her body was discovered. According to the story in The Oklahoman by, Matt Dinger, "The only description of anyone inside the pickup is a man with full tattoo sleeves on both arms."

Second, the Director said, "...there were girls nearby in a dark car who were pleading with Carina not to go with them. To this date we don't know who those girls were, but we'd like to know who they were. If they will come forward we'd like to talk to them, find out what they saw, what they witnessed, why they were concerned about Carina's safety and getting in this red pickup."

How the OSBI knows those unidentified girls were pleading with Carina Saunders not to get in the truck remains unclear, as does the mysterious reference to, "them," as opposed to a single tatted up guy. Perhaps Florence just misspoke about the number of people in the pickup. After all, it wouldn't be the first time someone fucked up during the investigation of this nightmare.

The only other oddity which emerged yesterday came not from the OSBI, but Saunders' cousin, Kati Bloodworth. She was quoted as saying, "I do feel guilty about dropping her off that night and I always will."

Think about it. Carina Saunders had been reported missing by her family on September 28th. Yet, her cousin just admitted she knew exactly where she was on October 8th.

Yes, as the Bard wrote, "There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio."

Indeed, more than any of us will ever know, much less understand.

Increasingly, it appears the death of Carina Saunders is one of them.




10-13-16

Monday, October 10, 2016

Trump Kinda, Sorta Wins Round Two

Donald Trump didn't win Sunday night in St. Louis, but he didn't lose either. Yes, the bizarre, psycho drama which, at times, resembled an early Roman Polanski movie shot while the director was on acid, ended in a contentious draw.

Given what had gone down in the days leading up to the confrontation the tie will allow Trump to claim he won. In fact, it didn't take, but a minute after it was over for his running mate, Mike Pence to send him a message praising his, "impressive victory."

Today, Pence is backing Trump all the way after he said he would have Hillary Clinton investigated and prosecuted post inauguration day. That's a far cry from Friday evening when the allegedly religious Indiana governor was practically disowning the Trumpster for his sexually callous and lewd remarks on an "Access Hollywood," tape which exploded in the media that morning.

Trump's displeasure with Pence's reaction to the sordid tape and his sudden popularity among certain GOP hot shots was clearly on display last night. When asked about White Mike's stance on Syria, which is pretty much the opposite of his, Trump responded with terse, iciness, "Governor Pence and I disagree on the issue." When he said it, El Don's steely glare made you believe he was an inch from pointing directly at the camera in order to tell his choice for vice president, "You're fired."

Of course that was the least twisted thing on Trump's mind. Prior to the debate he held a press conference with four women, three of whom have accused Bill Clinton of sexual abuse. The fourth was a rape victim whose attacker was defended by a court appointed attorney named, Hillary Clinton. She didn't get the guy off, but managed to secure a reduced sentence.

According to reports the original plan was that the four women would be seated in Trump's VIP seating section and would enter the hall at the exact moment as Bill Clinton. The presidential debate commission found out about the plot and told Trump's people if they tried to pull the stunt security would escort the women out of the hall. They were seated early, behind the candidate's family.

When he wasn't ignoring, or evading questions, Trump attacked with a blizzard of accusations, half truths, and outright lies. The most outrageous of which was the claim he never tweeted the words, "check out sex tape," (of Alicia Machado, the former Miss Universe who Clinton had cited in the first debate as being a victim of Trump's run amok misogyny.)

The tweet, sent out between 3am and 5am, read, "Did crooked Hillary help disgusting (check out sex tape and past) Alicia M. become a U.S. citizen so she could use her in the debate?" The denial was a moment of supreme surrealism, one that not even Salvador Dali could surpass in his weirdest phantasms.

To reinforce his claims of media bias, a couple of times, Trump went all bitchy-whiny, complaining  the moderators were letting Mrs. Clinton run over her allotted time while they were cutting him off. The truth is both candidates ran over while Cooper and Raddatz tried to control the pace of vitriol on both sides.

Meanwhile, as Hillary Clinton spoke, the Big Orange Guy prowled the stage like a caged bear. In more than a few instances he seemed to be stalking her by coming uncomfortably close to her back while she faced the audience. It was as if he was practicing some ancient aboriginal ritual of intimidation and dominance.

Yes, Donald J. Trump's win last night wasn't that he out debated Hillary Clinton, but he was able avoid what could have been a campaign ending disaster.

By doing so there is no doubt he drove his followers into spasms of glee. However, we can also be sure he didn't convert any of Hillary's followers. The question at hand is did Brother Trump sway any independents, or undecided women? The answer will come in a few weeks.

In the mean time what we do know is, Donald Trump isn't running against Bill Clinton, but he is most certainly on record bragging he can grab any woman's "pussy" with impunity because he is a star.

And, ultimately, that's the reality of where Don Trump is right now.







10-10-16

Friday, October 7, 2016

A Nation of Hysterics: From a Martian Invasion to Scary Clowns

It goes without saying America is a nation chock full of hysterics. From a Martian invasion carried live on radio, to the promised Y2K meltdown 16 years ago, and the dreaded apocalypse at the end of the Mayan calendar in 2012, it's proven we go nuts when it comes to weird shit. Hey, how else can you explain the presence of Donald J. Trump at the top of the republican presidential ticket?

Other than the aforementioned, Trump, the current great scare is clowns. That's right, clowns. It seems they are everywhere and every last one of them is creepy.

The latest epidemic of craziness began at the end of August in Greenville, South Carolina. A little boy living in an apartment complex told his mother two clowns tried to lure him into nearby woods. It didn't take long for similar reports to surface in the same area, then spread like a wildfire across the face of the continent.

The newest incident was in Chickasha, Oklahoma. Early Monday morning a man told authorities he ventured outside at 3am to smoke a cigarette only to see a menacing clown nearby. He claimed when he used his cell phone to call 911 the clown ran away. Police arrived a little over a minute later and searched the neighborhood. However, just like every other sighting which has haunted people from coast to coast, they couldn't find a trace of the suspect.

Yes, they're not only scary, but, despite those big ass shoes, they are really fast.

It's hard to tell when clowns began to take bad raps. It probably started with a guy named John Wayne Gacy who lived near Chicago. When he wasn't appearing at children's parties and charity events dressed as Pogo the clown he was busy murdering 33 young men. The killings ended in 1978 when he was popped for the disappearance of a local teenager. Within days of his arrest cops began digging up bodies in the crawl space under Gacy's home. The media quickly dubbed him the, "Killer Clown."

In the years immediately following Pogo's arrest and conviction things became ugly for clowns in the Chicago area. So much so columnist, Mike Royko wrote a piece condemning the levels of harassment and violence being perpetrated against them during parades and the like.

Stephen King's novel, "It," arrived at bookstores in 1986. Like much of King's work it was an instant best seller. The supernatural villain, named Pennywise, The Dancing Clown, preyed on children in the fictional Maine town of Derry every three decades, or so. It was made into a TV mini-series in 1990 and a feature film adaptation is due out in September, 2017.

In 1988 the movie, "Killer Clowns From Outer Space," was released and became a cult classic. The plot revolved around a group of fresh faced teenagers who were relentlessly stalked and gruesomely dispatched one after the other by a gaggle of deadly mutant clowns.

And it probably didn't help that in 1989 a couple of guys named Joseph Bruce and Joseph Utsler began rapping while known as, Inner City Posse. They quickly morphed into what is now called, Insane Clown Posse as they shifted their genre to what is known as, "horrorcore."

While their faces are painted in clown make up they pound out lyrics like, "First thing I'll do is kill a couple of hotties. That always gets them monstered up. Decapitated bodies."

So much for all those funny guys unfolding out of a tiny car in the center ring of the Shrine Circus. Thanks to our paranoid hysteria, those innocent days look to be as long gone as letting our kids eat a neighbor's home made popcorn balls and caramel apples on Halloween.

Indeed, we have many boogie men--Martian invaders, incompetent computer programmers, mystical Mayan mathematicians, and now clowns.

Given our nature is it any wonder many of us have made the leap directly from them to Hispanic and Muslim immigrants?

I didn't think so.


10-7-16

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Three Things We Learned on Tuesday

We learned three things yesterday.

The first was that Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, is a pretty good con artist when he wants to be. He had promised to deliver The Great October Surprise in the wee hours of Tuesday morning. The word was his revelations would have a direct impact on the United States presidential election. He shifted the venue of the press conference at the last moment due to what was called, "specific information." No one knows what that information was, but there is no doubt the right wing minions interpreted it as the discovery of a Clinton team of snipers on the prowl.

All the anticipation drove thousands, if not millions, of Trumpists to either stay up late, or rise early so they could witness what they assumed would be the downfall of Hillary Rodham Clinton.

The salivating was intense enough it moved the head of The Trump Thug Brigade, Roger Stone to tweet on Saturday, "@Hillary Clinton is done." Alex Jones, the minister of Don's, Department of Conspiracies was so giddy he broadcast the press conference live. Before it began he told his audience, "It will be historic and the Clintons will be devastated." He went further by claiming he was so excited he was worried his heart wouldn't be able to stand it.

It turned out the entire show was, as the Daily Dot described, an extended WikiLeaks infomercial. In fact Assange chided the faithful who were watching by saying if his organization had a major announcement they wouldn't do it at 3am. He did, however, offer viewers 40% off on various books written by himself and others who run the questionable enterprise.

Of course this doesn't mean Assange won't release some sort of email, or document down the line that will make the hot to trot Clinton haters happy. But, he did guarantee himself a much smaller and more skeptical audience when he does.

Next was the announcement the Trump campaign is forming a fact checking group called, 'The Big League Truth Team." In order to counter groups like, PolitiFact and FactCheck.org--you know, the non partisan outfits who expose El Don's never ending torrent of lies--the Trump brain trust has begun to recruit grass root supporters as, "fact checkers."

Well, sort of.

The Big League Truth Team site offers these instructions, "Thank you for joining the team. We have serious work to do. Before, during, and after each debate we will send you messages we need for you to spread online. Use Twitter, Facebook, email, and any other tool you have to spread what we send you online. Sometimes we'll text you and sometimes we'll email you. Be ready! We can't fight both the media and Hillary without your help. We're counting on you. That's all for now. Remember the debate schedule. Plan ahead. Be ready."

Yes, that's right. The Trump campaign is going to fact check the Trump himself. They just need a social media network to get their odious version of the truth out there.

Finally, last night, we had Tim Kaine. His debate delivery immediately begged the question, was the man on speed? Let's face it, when it comes to interrupting people he made Donald Trump look like a rank amateur.

At least when he did talk over, not just Mike Pence, but the moderator, he was telling the truth--something Trump has yet to do. Most of  Kaine's rat-a-tat-tat attacks cited Trump's wildest bullshit word for word. It was stuff the big orange guy has said time and time again on camera and therefore, in every sense of the word, is undeniable.

That is unless you're Governor Pence. He denied it all by calmly, yea, serenely, shaking his head as each verifiable, on tape, quote came spilling forth. It was if he had gone to some safe room in his mind where every repugnant and foul thing his running mate has ever spewed simply never happened.

It was either the greatest display of transcendental meditation ever witnessed, or the most despicable sell out to evil a self described Christian has publicly committed.

In the end, it was probably both.

Whatever the case, the next stop for this magical mystery tour is St. Louis on Sunday evening.

Hey, be there, or be square.



10-5-16

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Trump and Women

The cascade of lies, half truths, denials, and shit he just makes up continues to flow from Mr. Donald John Trump. All of it in the face of mounting evidence the man is everything we loathe and more.

The latest report comes from the Los Angeles Times which dug into law suits filed against the Trump National Golf Club in Rancho Palos Verdes, California and a development firm owned by El Don. Details found within the suits, which were filed in the early and mid 2000's, are just now coming to light.

The focus of the golf course suit had to do with labor practices. As in the employees claimed they weren't allowed rest, or lunch breaks required by CA law. But they also touched on an aspect of the big orange guy's personality and behavior he has been struggling with lately.

In a sworn declaration, former club catering manager, Hayley Strozier stated Brother Don consistently wanted women who he deemed were less than attractive to be fired. In fact things got so bad when managers at the club knew Trump was going to drop in they'd reschedule their staff assignments to make sure only those he'd consider physically appealing were on duty.

Ms. Strozier also stated a former Trump bodyguard, turned organization vice president, told her to fire a female employee because, "Mr. Trump doesn't like fat people and he would not like seeing her when he was on the premises."

Strozier wasn't the only one who talked about Trump's tastes. The club's restaurant manager at the time, Sue Kwiatkowski says Trump pulled her aside one day and told her, "I want you to get some good looking hostesses in here. People like to see good looking people when they come in."

Former Hostess Lucy Messerschmidt claimed one of the managers, Bob Wolbers, told her he was giving her time off during a visit from Trump because, "He likes to see fresh faces and young girls." Messerschmidt was 45 at the time. She maintains she was fired later because she complained about age discrimination.

Food server, Gail Doner noted, "The hostesses that were the youngest and prettiest always got the best shifts." Doner, who was 60, said managers slowly cut back her shifts to the point they stopped calling her at all. She had over 20 years of experience in customer service.

The suit was settled in 2013. It cost Trump's company $475,000, but--does this sound familiar--the judgment allowed the club to do so without admitting any guilt. That's right, he can claim innocence once again.

Yes, this is an evil fuck who sees women as nothing more than arm candy and stage props. If you don't appeal to his sense of, d├ęcor, he not only doesn't want you around, but he's more than willing to refer to you in the most despicable misogynistic terms imaginable.

All of which brings us back to another delusion. According to Donald Trump, "I have great respect for women and will do far more for women than Hillary Clinton." And then, "...all are impressed with how nicely I have treated women."

Right.

How is it we have sunk so low that a lying, sexist, racist and xenophobic beast like Donald Trump is within a few votes of the White House?

Perhaps the question shouldn't be asked, because, ultimately, the answer is too awful for many of us to accept.




9-29-16







Tuesday, September 27, 2016

At the End of the First, Hillary Clinton 1-Donald Trump 0

It wasn't the best of nights for Donald Trump yesterday. His performance in the first presidential debate was spotty at best. So much so the MSNBC crew handling the post game analysis were snaking through the studio in a conga line chanting," HRC! HRC! HRC!" Chris Matthews went so far as to say Hillary Clinton pitched a shutout, as others claimed the Trumpster had been reduced to absolute gibberish.

While Matthews' assessment was a tad gushing and the celebration was dangerously premature, it was clear most people around the country believed Mrs. Clinton had won the match. A CNN poll taken of viewers showed 62% believed the former Secretary of State prevailed, while 27% thought Trump had.

Trump, delusional as always, left the stage convinced he had won. He even showed up in the spin room afterward and said of moderator, Lester Holt, "I thought Lester did a great job." That opinion changed once he realized he and his kids were the only ones around who felt he did the better job. By this morning El Don tweeted, "I thought Lester Holt gave me very unfair questions at the end, but I'm not complaining about that."

Actually, Big Orange Guy, a tweet worded that way is pretty much the definition of a complaint. Holt aside, the real Trumpian wrath was reserved for his microphone. He said the mic worked fine when he initially tested it, but once on stage for the actual debate the volume was too low and it wasn't working properly--there was, according to the candidate, a crackling sound. While claiming not to be into conspiracies, Trump hinted he might have been the victim of some mysterious saboteur.

If that was the case the unknown villain was a lousy one, because on TV, the allegedly rigged microphone worked perfectly during the airing of the debate. All of this led Mrs. Clinton to say, "Anybody who complains about the microphone is not having a good night."

The truth is Trump was Trump. He tried to wing huge parts of the conversation with talking points we've heard time and time again. Only last night he wasn't in the middle of a stage full of wannabes where the camera was off him for long periods. He was stuck on an unflinching split screen for over 90 minutes and by the end he seemed to have wilted.

Indeed, despite his assertion Mrs. Clinton not only doesn't appear presidential, but lacks stamina for the job, he was the one grimacing and compulsively sipping at a glass of water. Not to mention snorting and sniffling so loudly into the reportedly malfunctioning microphone it sounded like he was in the throes of a massive hay fever attack.

Amidst the facial contortions a couple of his talk over moments were steeped in arrogance and complete disdain for the people he says he represents. At one point, while speculating why Trump won't release his tax returns, Clinton noted years ago when he had to make them public in order to get a gaming license they showed he paid no federal taxes at all. He interrupted her by saying, "That makes me smart."

When she noted he profited from the housing bubble collapse, which cost thousands of people their homes he said, "It's business."

Ah yes, quite a man of the common people.

The next stop is St. Louis. There is no doubt Trump will alter his presentation, despite saying last night he wouldn't. He simply has to. He might not have suffered a knock out punch at Hofstra, but he clearly lost the round. His lack of preparation and organization, plus the practice of talking over the top of everyone, including the moderator,  just didn't play like it has in the past.

There is no telling if Mrs. Clinton will get a bump in the polls because of last night. Normally it could be assumed she would, but this is anything, but a normal election. No matter what the polls say in the next couple of days she still must remain careful, yet aggressive.

Let's face it, after the first debate four years ago, Barack Obama looked to be on the ropes, but he came back and crushed Mitt Romney in later ones and was re-elected.

No, it doesn't matter how many people Chris Matthews high fives over the next few days. The reality is this thing isn't over and, for many of us, it remains far too close for comfort.


sic vita est


9-27-16

Friday, September 23, 2016

The First Presidential Debate: Unchecked at Hofstra

The first debate at Hofstra University is right around the corner. Thanks to the unabashed animosity between not just the candidates, but their supporters, chances are it will be the most watched campaign event in the history of American presidential politics. Everyone will be in and only a precious few will be neutral.

So what can we expect?

Thanks to Donald John Trump, a man who is completely unhinged, God only knows. He has already said this and the next two debates are, "rigged." In addition, earlier this week, he called on moderator, Lester Holt not to, "fact check," statements made by the candidates during the course of the evening.

In other words let him blurt out any type of lie, accusation, or denial no matter how crazy without restraint. When, Mrs. Clinton calls him on it he can simply shrug, purse his lips and claim she's the liar--all the while knowing his supporters will never doubt him, as she is, hopefully, driven into a state of flummoxed frustration.

What we do know is one of the topics will be, "America's direction." The mind reels at how dark of an abyss he'll say we've fallen into. At that moment, he will start to hammer with his slogan, "Make America Great Again," which we've understood for ages now is really code for, "Make America White Again."

Think not? Yesterday it was revealed an Ohio county Trump chairperson, Kathy Miller told an interviewer, "I don't think there was racism until Obama got elected," and that racism didn't exist in the 1960's. That's the least of it. She went on to say if African Americans weren't successful in the last half century it was their fault, because they had all the advantages. The state GOP chair immediately demanded her resignation because of the, "insane comments."

Miller called it quits, but the fact remains this loon had managed to secure a position within the campaign. Does anyone really think her views weren't known, or shared by fellow Trumpists in Ohio? No, she just fucked up by going public with them.

We also know the Common Wealth Fund commissioned a study by the Rand Corporation which found Trump's health care proposals, if enacted, will cause the number of uninsured Americans to go from 24.9 million to 44.6 million. Included in that number are anywhere from 5.7 to 7.1 million people who are already in fair to poor health.

In addition the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget found, Trump's tax proposals will add $5.3 trillion to the national debt over the next ten years while Hillary Clinton's would add $200 billion.

Finally we know, El Don is all for a stop and frisk program either in Chicago, or nation wide, depending on which speech you heard. It would be based on the one used a few years ago in New York City. A federal judge put a stop to it in NYC after it was proven four out of every five persons halted, then searched, for absolutely no reason at all, were either black, or Hispanic. Since then, in order to modernize the term racial discrimination, we've called it profiling.

Yes, these are the things the big orange guy can say aren't true thanks to his demand that Holt and others not interrupt the proceedings with an aside to the audience which contains a touch of reality.

He can also maintain those thousands of Muslims in New Jersey he hallucinated about are still celebrating the attacks of 9-11. And, if he is feeling whimsical, claim the moon is made of blue cheese. All he needs to do is employ the bully boy bluster and complete lack of conscience which served him well during the republican primary debates.

Mrs. Clinton needs to be wary. As we've seen lately truth and reason don't always win. Far too often the loud mouthed sociopath who is unchecked does.





sic vita est


*some of the information in this post was supplied by reports from the Associated Press


9-23-16