This Country Is So Goldurn Screwed Up

Anyone who’s awake knows that Fox News is straight up media poison to the soul. They whip their viewers up into angry frenzies, playing on people’s fears and differences. Yet look at this shit:

Fox News once again heavily dominated in the cable news ratings in the third quarter of 2021.

In the past three months, Fox News — which will be celebrating its 25th anniversary next month — averaged 1.4 million viewers in total day, and 227,000 in the key 25-54 viewer demographic. MSNBC took second overall with 747,000 total viewers and 95,000 in the demo. CNN came in third overall with 604,000 total viewers, but beat MSNBC in the demo with 131,000 viewers.

People en masse are happily eating up pure trash. It’s no wonder we can’t have a mature national conversation about today’s issues, because people think “The Ingraham Angle” tells people the truth. All they sell is outrage; and you don’t have to look past the Capitol riot to see what the end result is. What’s even crazier is that some people cannot even “trust” Fox. They get their daily dose of rage from OAN or worse.

We are in a precarious position. Truth is scorned and replaced with opinion based on one’s “research”. I’m looking ahead and I see nothing good coming. The Biden presidency has been stalled by a few dogmatic Democrats and the prospects for a second term look grim. And thanks to programs like the ones Fox airs, there’s always that pervasive and increasing chance that we may see a Trump redux in ’24. Way better bloggers than me have already sounded the call that this is an inevitability if we keep in the direction we are going.

The competition isn’t even close. Sanity is losing the war. And it is a war out there. You can pretend all you like that all is well but there’s something happening here and this time it’s perfectly clear.

Aspersions On The Asparagus

Time to check up on Louie Gohmert. Louie has some fierce competition these days as to who can be America’s dumbest elected official, but he’s the O.G. of the modern Know-Nothings. He can still be reliably counted on to have the most absurd takes on any subject. Louie had a few things to say about green energy on wingnut OAN recently:

I don’t quite see how dead birds will bring down our country, but that’s Gohmert logic for you. Now as with anything Louie says, you have to go check and see how untrue it is. So I did the simplest of Google searches, and learned that solar is hardly causing mass bird casualties, and certainly not in the numbers that Gohmert claims. In fact, our current energy setup is far more lethal to birds than solar panel farms. For example, there are approximately 3,500 “flamers” per year due to mirrors, but we lose 25 million birds to power lines yearly. There’s the real bird holocaust that Gohmert should be concerned about if he cares about the birds, which of course he doesn’t.

I can’t believe this creature used to be a judge.

Tucker Carlson Is A Gullible Asshole

So Schmucker has been cozying up to Hungary’s Viktor Orban, known all over the world as an “illiberal” “dictator”. He’s protectionist, nationalist, populist…you know, basically another Trump. He even has his own wall to keep immigrants out. And Tucker could not contain himself, rhapsodizing that Hungary is freer than The United States.

Until…

Tucker got censored in Hungary for criticizing China while he was there.

Excuse me while I laugh my ass off.

You don’t see that in the People’s Republic of The United States, do ya, asshole? Fuck off until you come to the fork in the road then fuck off some more. Dumbass.

Jive Talkin’

Donald Trump achieved very little in his four years in office except for maybe giving a tax cut to the wealthy. Now that he is out, he wants congressional Republicans to do the same. Trump, possibly unaware of his waning influence, had this to say about an infrastructure deal that could pass the upper chamber:

“Joe Biden’s infrastructure bill will be used against the Republican Party in the upcoming elections in 2022 and 2024. It will be very hard for me to endorse anyone foolish enough to vote in favor of this deal,” Trump said in an official statement.

Trump called the package a “gift” to the Democrats and argued that it was only supported by “RINOs,” an acronym meaning “Republicans in name only.”

You see, Trump doesn’t give a good god-damn about the needs of the nation. As always, what matters to Trump is defeating one’s perceived enemies. Anything done in the spirit of comity is of no use to him. Now I can’t stand Mitch McConnell-he’s a traitor to the nation who never met a bill he couldn’t spike. But he may actually let his caucus vote on this thing. Even he knows it’s bad politics to undermine traditional infrastructure. But that ignorant, blithering nutbag Trump wants to keep scorching the earth with hyperpartisanship. In purely political terms, Trump does understand that evading a filibuster will be a W for the Democrats. I’ll give him that. But he doesn’t understand the necessity of something important like an infrastructure bill. He’d rather let it all burn before giving up any juice at all to Democrats.

That’s why he sucks and should never hold office again. He couldn’t bring this nation together if he tried-it’s just not in his DNA to cooperate. Which is funny, given that one of the things he is putatively known for is making deals.

Two Sides, Same Coin

It’s a race to the bottom today to see which country can be the most authoritarian. And the United States likes to be first in any competition. But we are reminded sometimes that we are not at all alone in racing to that distinction.

Now we’ve all seen the rush by conservatives to blame China for creating COVID-19, regardless of how true or untrue that is. It has truthiness, and that’s good enough for them. Some, like Rand Paul, even suggest that Fauci and friends were directly involved in increasing the transmissibility of SARS-COV-2 to humans. That’s also very truthy in the absence of a better explanation. As actual-credentialed doctor Fauci explained to not-so-accredited optometrist Paul, he has no idea what he’s talking about. And neither do we. We just don’t know where COVID came from yet, and we should all wait patiently for an investigation before we go off half cocked with something that merely sounds good.

Authoritarian governments lie like hell to their citizens. No good democracy survives long on a pack of lies. That’s why we’re in such mortal jeopardy here of losing ours. We just got done with four years of rule by a congenital liar, whose ascendance was the culmination of 30-plus years of bullshit from the conservative wing of this country. And we’re still barely out of the woods from it. We could easily go back to it if we fuck around too much.

China is no stranger to authoritarianism at all. Its brutality against the forces of democracy are well documented. And I think we can say with certainty that it propagandizes its public at least as much as we do. So I guess it’s no surprise to find the Chinese government pulling a Rand Paul and suggesting that somehow the US is the one who let COVID slip out of our labs right here at home. China’s afraid of looking like shit on the charge that it originated there, and they’re doing everything they can to point the finger elsewhere. And they are rejecting investigations by independent agencies. They’re even alleging that maybe US athletes are responsible for bringing COVID to their nation. Their state run news agencies are as bonkers as some of our propagandists. They have no idea what they are talking about either.

The truth is out there, but at this early stage of the game, no one knows where this bad motorscooter of a disease came from. But the war to control what people believe is still a hot one.

Sail On Sailor

The lady says write.

So I pushed the button, and here we are. I started therapy for depression a few weeks ago, and one of the things I have been instructed to do is do this daily as a way of working through this trough of unhappiness that I’m currently wallowing in. I don’t know how well it will work. But I’m going to try anyway, even if all I come up with is navel-gazing. I’ll try and throw 300 or more words up and let it be. Most of my readership is otherwise occupied viewing my “Tucker Carlson Is An Asshole” series and will politely ignore these little intermittent squalls from the depths of desperation.

So now I am on new meds. I’m taking 15mg of Buspar, which is supposed to combat my anxiety. Lately I have found myself full of the feeling that everything is falling apart, and it causes me no shortage of chest flutters. The Buspar is supposed to replace the Neurontin I was taking. My new shrink doesn’t believe in the efficacy of Neurontin for anxiety, and my own research bears this out as well. So that’s chunked. I have also been given 15mg of Remeron to help me sleep at night. I’m one of probably countless people who try to solve all their problems while they are trying to get to sleep at night. Every little niggling thought that was unthought during the day begins to work itself out when I am on the pillow, so the Remeron is there for that. I think it’s working for the most part, it just still takes me a long time to get to sleep. I’m back to Zyprexa after Clozapine turned out to be a nonstarter so far as my ability to wake up when I am supposed to.

So far, I think I am in the capable hands of a decent mixologist. We’re being as aggressive as possible and he’s been very responsive to my feedback.

I may also be bringing sexy back. It’s a little early to tell, but it appears that both Buspar and Remeron are known for returning males back to form, so to speak. I know that might be TMI but ha, who’s really with me to this point? Y’all be good humans, stay frosty. If you feel like sharing a story about your experience with any of these crazymeds, or any others, drop a comment. I’ll leave you with one of Brian Wilson’s last great songs.

I sailed an ocean, unsettled ocean
Through restful waters and deep commotion
Often frightened, unenlightened
Sail on, sail on sailor

I wrest the waters, fight Neptune’s waters
Sail through the sorrows of life’s marauders
Unrepenting, often empty
Sail on, sail on sailor

Hand Of Doom

I never saw it coming. How silly of me.

I don’t know how they did it, but conservative forces have figured out a way to politicize vaccination and make it unpalatable to a certain cross-section of society. Why are they doing it? Like, what’s Fox’s endgame? To kill as many viewers as possible? What’s most likely is that at bottom they are trying to own the Biden administration, denying it the victory over COVID that it should rightfully have considering we have reached a point where you wait 15 minutes to get a vaccine at the supermarket. If Trump couldn’t beat corona, no one can, goes the logic perhaps.

A few wise words from the erstwhile president would be helpful here; in fact, today Peter Doocy wanted to know if a PSA of some sort from both Biden and Trump would spur people to go get their shot. But Trump’s too big a baby to be a statesman. That has never changed. He’s quite busy churning out childish “statements” about how he won the election or whatever other petty grievance he can’t let go of.

Let’s be clear; anyone who dawdled as much as Trump did on COVID deserved to be unelected. But I think that even if the number dead were cut in half whoever was president would still have gotten the axe. It was simply a bad time to be president. So now is not the time to be small about it. It was fated. He should say something for the health of society in any event, especially since he’s still held in high regard by his followers. But I certainly won’t hold my breath.

Personally, I don’t think that calumniating against the vaccine should even be legal at this point. This is still a public health emergency. The rules of media and markets simply don’t work for the times we live in. We are being super-irresponsible. If this stupid virus continues to race around the country, it’s a virtual certainty that the little fucker will mutate its way around a vaccine and then we are all screwed. Some people think we will see an end to the virus eventually, but I don’t see it happening. We’ve poisoned the discourse around vaccines with impunity, all in the name of free speech and association- rights which will not help you when you are on a respirator or dead.

Group Groyper

I think I have found the right-wing id. I have traced it down to Nicholas Fuentes.

Nick’s just hit my radar, as well as puberty. I seem to be a bit late to the party, but the kid is making a name for himself by out-outraging the outraged right. He’s even started fights between Charlie Kirk’s adherents and his, that’s how right-wing he is. His little fascist army calls themselves Groypers, which apparently is what this fella is:

Oh boy, another Pepe meme.

Hilarious. Anyway, he’s so over the top that I wonder if he is left-wing performance art. It can barely be taken seriously, but thanks largely to Donald Trump we’ve reached a juncture in political discourse that the Overton Window is open just enough for a Nick Fuentes to slither through. Here’s Nick rhapsodizing outside of CPAC (not invited, again, amazing considering what they talk about there) about an era far removed from his Gen Z ass:

Bless his little pointed head. He’s very much into America First rhetoric too, which as you probably know was one of the slogans of 1930s American proto-fascist nationalism.

This is the baby-faced enemy, folks. This is the terminus, the end result of right wing thought in America, where “owning the libs” (or in Nick’s case, owning everyone he can) is the only initiative that matters. If it’s offensive and outrageous, they want in on it. Then they bitch about being canceled when someone objects, of course. What good this game is is anyone’s guess. It certainly is making a mockery of the first amendment, that is for sure.

Tucker Carlson Is A Weasel. And An Asshole.

I’ve been happily mining Carlson’s greatest hits for clicks. But you may have noticed that he’s gone from laughable asshole to dangerous asshole in the last year or so. I’m way behind on calling him out.

Let’s just get back gently on the horse with a new clip of him taking cheap shots at a man who has more grit in his taint than Tucker Carlson has or ever will have in his whole flabby body.

I was a member of the US military for a time. And I can tell you that it’s not the hotbed of conservatism that you would assume it is. Chief among the attributes one must have as a soldier is situational awareness. You must strive to know all of the angles on the battlefield. It’s somewhat analogous to having an open mind in the civilian world. A few days ago, Chairman of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff General Mark Milley exemplified this quality while responding to some questions Matt Gaetz had for him. In his response he said he wanted to know what caused white rage, what he felt his cadets should know when it came to things like critical race theory, and explained that reading and understanding texts outside of our general American understanding does not make us or his soldiers weak or less patriotic.

In comes fearless Tucker Carlson, laughing at the clip and calling Milley a stupid pig.

“Mark Milley is the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,” said Carlson. “He didn’t get that job because he’s brilliant or because he’s brave. Or because people who know him respect him. He is not, and they definitely don’t. Milley got the job because he is obsequious. He knows who to suck up to, and he’s more than happy to do it. Feed him a script and he will read it.”

Milley has the top military job in the nation, only lower than Joe Biden on the military chain of command. So I don’t know what point he’s trying to make here re: sucking up.

Carlson mocked Milley for his comments. “Hard to believe that man wears a uniform. He’s that unimpressive. Notice he never defined White rage? And we should know what it is. What is White rage?”

I love this. What is white rage? Really? Was Tucker sleeping through the Trump years? Maybe he missed the riot at the capitol? Is he vaguely aware that he stokes it nightly?

I would give Tucker half an ear if he had served and made these comments. But he clearly doesn’t understand “men wearing the uniform”. His insights are puerile and severely lacking in any understanding of what makes a soldier, much less one with the stature and breadth of experience as Milley. Tucker Carlson is not qualified to measure him, he’s just an asshole with a TV show on the worst network ever created. I’d like to see him bring Milley on and try his shtick, but you and I know Tucker’s happy lobbing his cowardly bullshit from a distance on this one.

Update: Tucker alleges the NSA is monitoring his communications. The NSA patiently explains that they don’t do domestic surveillance, unless you are in contact with a hostile foreign agent. You’re insane, but you aren’t that big a fish, asshole.

Twin Sinema

Yesterday, the Voting Rights Act died because Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema do not understand-even at this late stage of the game-that Republicans have no interest in passing laws, unless it has something to do with abortion or taxes. It’s plainly obvious for all to see, but those two buttheads are still being painfully obtuse about their intention to make Joe Biden’s presidency die by suffocation. Make no mistake, the gambit can work, and confused voters may find themselves staying home if they don’t see any results.

Liberals are now forced to play the long game. That is to say that there’s going to be no forward movement unless we get more Democrats in office. The bitch of it is they will have to face withering criticism and bad faith arguing from Republicans for the next year and a half until we can do that. And as you know, the GOP is pushing voter suppression laws all over the country. They’re determined not to have a replay of 2020. Thankfully, the cloud of COVID is beginning to lift and we can see voters return to the polls with their feet more confidently.

Sinema’s out there arguing that there is no point to voting on something that Republicans can just reverse should they find themselves in the majority again. What she is prescribing, perhaps unwittingly, is a state of permanent gridlock. The days of sixty vote majorities are gone and they are not coming back-this country is bitterly divided, perhaps moreso than any time since our civil war. Every Democrat should already know this. What needs to happen instead is that we need to govern effectively, so much so that the people will happily cast their ballots again for Democrats. If we get results, there’s no reason to fear a Republican resurgence, is there now, Kyrsten? But she’s not giving us even half a chance to move the ball. She’s a raging disappointment and so is her compadre Manchin.

Ignoring political realities is giving Mitch McConnell everything he wants. If a dissatisfied public sees fit to award them majority status again, two things could happen: A) Nothing, because conservatives gotta conserve, and B) Republicans junk the filibuster themselves. A Biden White House will prevent B from doing too much damage, but think of all the time we are wasting not solving problems. I personally don’t see Ron DeSantis as much of a threat come ’24, but losing all the marbles is a possibility-and at a time when we should be showing Americans what we can do, we are instead showing them that politics is useless and not worth participating in.

And that, friends, is exactly how Republicans like it.

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