In a few minutes I'll be headed over a few blocks to participate in early voting for some of the local offices.
After a very conflicted contemplation, I have settled on:
Byron Brown for Mayor - (D) - All the evidence I've seen is that he's done good work and is very astute as a person, politician, and moderate. I'm balking at extremism for the next few elections, and while I sympathize with India Walton's ideals, and could tolerate a possible Walton win, I feel it's more important to restore sanity to politics and public policy, and reward effective moderates like Byron Brown. So, I'm "writing down Byron Brown". I wouldn't vote for Trump if I were Republican either.
I would vote for Indian Walton under a different configuration. If the mayorship of the past years had been horrible, demonstrably corrupt, were against a Trump conservative, etc., I would totally contribute to the on-ramping of a socialist mayor in this country. But as I will say below, hopefully if she does somehow lose, she will nonetheless become a major seat in the table of the direction of this city and of its social policies.
As it is, I see her primary win as merely the result of inaction by Mayor Brown at the time, and a flooding of a niche social segment into the voting, in the first place.
John Garcia for Sheriff - (R) - In general I am a strong supporter of law enforcement and social civil control. While I think more needs to be done at the human level to prevent crime and civil decay, that should little involve police or law enforcement arms who I admit would stand to benefit from a gain in broader socialist agendas. It would mean they could actually focus on criminal intercept and investigation, much to the dismay of robbers and scofflaws.
Garcia is a Republican candidate who supports a more technically advanced and strong modern police force without going Trump in the process.
Kimberly Beaty would be fine for many political offices and should probably try for another one not so vertically involving the logistics of a working law enforcement agency, fully acknowledging that that is her skillset and profession. Her compassion and ideals need to be in the fabric of said logistics, and to be sure, she would not be the worst candidate to win if she does.
Speaking of the worst candidate though, the less said about Trump-aligner Karen L. Healy-Case, the better. The Trump win of 5 years ago is going to spell many election cycles of this kind of vermin showing up as legitimate candidates.
The other offices cited on the ballot are not elections that I have been focused on, nor do I even necessarily understand the very offices they pertain to. So I'll probably do a quick cursory sweep of Trump-supporting names and make sure to vote for anyone not, or, just skip them outright.
By Dave for Personal Blog.
Giuliani is being held accountable for a wide open campaign of misinformation.
So all Giuliani has to say is "It's a misunderstanding, here's the evidence."
But guess if that will happen.
Or, maybe he can simply admit to Trump's base he was exploiting them with nonsense all along. Also not going to happen.
This is a lot like that commercial where the shop-owner woman dances among Disney-like characters singing back responses aflutter. Until someone in her shop slips on a pool of water and breaks a leg, and suddenly, life and lawsuits get real.
Except, here, it's Giuliani sprinkler-heading lies and propaganda unbelievably forgetting that a real business was being affected in a bad, bad way, and that that business would naturally sue him into a life of misery.
He's not going to win this lawsuit and whether through the cost of the settlement or the spend of the fight, he's financially ruined.
Giuliani, a man I once heralded for his ability to tackle New York City crime, can't even abandon his delusion long enough to realistically defend himself, insisting that the process will actually EXPOSE Dominion's evilness.
As if Dominion and its attorneys know nothing about the risk of "discovery". The fact they are bringing the hammer down means that they ain't worried about being pummeled by right-wing fantasies and that Giuliani better snap out of it fast.
By Dave for Personal Blog.
Okay let's cut into my annoyingly nuanced position on the events of the past 72 hours. You really need to know where I stand. I'll start here with this post and bang out a few others, just to make it all digestible.
The Capitol Siege
The issue is the breach, period. We need not wonder whether the specific terminology in Trump's speeches actually caused the "siege", and we can only choose, but not necessitate, to engage in an examination of every individual who participated for purposes of prosecution.
But let's be honest: Nothing Trump said that day directed a small group of buffoons in particular to storm the Capitol and begin taking selfies. Yes, he did lay the foundation of unwarranted mantra against the United States with his election fraud campaign that was easy to pick up and run with, if some people were so inclined, which of course some buffoons were.
Not to let him off the hook. We know Trump is guilty of something in all of this. We know he is at the center. Trump legitimized juvenile anger and the result was of course an explosion of it under the stress test of an election and Senate control loss.
Through his years-long vitriol and celebration of "mean" he and his followers who equated his bullying with being strong and relatable, lost an opportunity to sell genuinely great merits of conservative principles to moderates and independents to a level needed to win continued control.
Trump created a culture similar to the common prison yard where high level politics and gestures of reason are conducted by a hundred men stuck with a 5th grade intellectual ruleset. You can tell them that an entire week's of debate and contemplation over the insult of a shove or the wearing of certain colors that ultimately results in a shanking, is ridiculous and small-minded, but they wouldn't get it. They think everyone thinks the way they do.
What Actually Happened
What in fact happened at the Capitol was that, as is atypical of any mass gathering protest a small number of people got aggressive and somehow (cough) breached the line of security which then allowed a swell of people to pour into a place that they should not have been, and probably never expected to be.
In a BLM protest "a place" has often been something like a big box store -- whatever is easily accessible. In this politically-geographed protest, it was the Capitol, its notable symbolism as a logical focal point, over a random shoe store, recognized.
I will be honest, I am absolutely positive had I spotted a stream inlet into a building like the Capitol, with no-one apparently stopping me or anyone else, I would have gone in too. Obviously not because I am pro-Trump -- I'd be livestreaming or taking a bunch of selfies.
Which brings me back to my opening point. The issue was the breach. How did that happen?
The Right Wing Did It
The right-wing-did-it "conspiracy" is that the small number of people who were too aggressive and managed to get in were actually part of a radical group that had planned it. After all, one guy was photographed with zip ties, and another guy was found with explosives in the car he brought. Seems like a real possibility. To know for sure, these people are going to have to be confronted, as they are, and their activities and communications scrutinized.
If they were in fact tightly associated with each other, and in fact were planning on something more serious than an elaborate tresspass, Trump still had nothing to do with it if only out of his sheer ignorance of his own power of words and status. That someone could be that dumb is a reason we hope an intelligent voting body can spot someone like that and not let it happen in the first place. But here we are.
But, let's not get crazy without getting crazier.
The Left Wing Did It
The breach might have been a convenient happenstance of the left. I can knit this conspiracy too. We can assume that everyone knew how charged pro-Trumpers were, as the threats and dangerous insinuations by enough of them circulated in plain sight for months and years (Twitter, Parler, wherever -- plain sight).
So, if you know wagons of dynamite are headed to a protest, it might be all too easy to thin out the security and "allow" a breach so that the predictable bad actors get in. The value would simply be to garner the CNN loop coverage (to use them as the usual example; understand that I mean the MSM in general) to cement Trump in the brilliant storification of a man at the helm, out of control.
Or, let's get even crazier.
The Corporate Government of the United States Did It
What if it was the left and right working together, agreeing to pass the ball back and forth in post-calamity wrangling, but out of the public eye, tapping glasses with each other over a job well done?
Trump usurped everyone negatively, but "negatively" isn't the active ingredient. Trump usurped. And politically that's what gets you killed, figuratively or otherwise.
Personally, I would love to know the absolute anatomy of the breach at all levels, and will be looking forward to learn. Those details are the key to understanding everything.
By Dave for Personal Blog.
It's been over a month (or so) now since the U.S. Presidential election secured Joe Biden as our next president, and I have yet to make my open WWW assessment, which of course is so very important. Your eyes may roll.
I was not happy with the outcome of this election. Yes, I was of course happy that Trump lost -- if we can all agree that actually happened. What I am not happy with is that he didn't lose by enough.
I wanted this election to be a repudiation of the reckless sentiments passed around in a circle on right-wing radio or general conservative media. Trump was never the election target because to me he never mattered. What does matter is is the source-fuel sewage basin from which Trump and likely future candidates of his ilk draw from.
I had hoped that Trump's failed presidency would have been enough to diminish the messaging of people like Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity which exploit angry people looking for simple answers to big problems, and, which massage a national paranoia against government or any institution that doesn't agree with their limited idea of a working democracy.
Biden's win was not by a wide enough margin on election night to convince me people are learning -- though the total ~80 million in his favor was quite impressive, suggesting America tried. And of course, we know that outside the presidential race, Trumplicans or classic republicans too fearful to contest them, actually did quite well.
The democrats lost seats in the House, and they didn't win any in the Senate -- though there is a runoff election in Georgia coming up that might change that. Nobody is holding their breath and the campaigns there resonate to me as if the democrats are just going through the obligatory motions; a process by which does not negate the bigger disappoint that there has to be a runoff race in the first place.
The United States of America is still in grave danger as long as we consider the Trumplican sharks that circle our boat a rationale legitimacy of any political process. By whose hand, we'll never know where these people came from, but I don't believe it is organic or by accident. We best brace ourselves because someone's plan is working.
By Dave for Personal Blog.
I have had this question for a long time. Why do leftists let conservatives "own" nationalism or Americanism? It shouldn't be "owned" either way, but if there has to be one it should be the liberals who do, for all the reasons outlined in this piece.
Question to my leftist/progressive friends: If you have a BLM or other progressive bumper sticker, would you be willing to slap on an American flag one right next to it? That's what needs to happen in order to dilute out the false ownership taken on by the right.
By Dave for Personal Blog.