Looks like we’ve got a whole new scandal to chew on, and Republicans are overjoyed that for once, it’s not one of theirs.
Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) is on the hot seat for bribery and influence peddling charges and from the snippets of evidence made public, it looks like he’s in deep doo-doo.
Apparently, the prosecutors have him nailed with envelopes stuffed with cash left in his suit jackets, which sounds like something right out of the Sopranos, bars of gold, text messages showing him working on behalf of Egypt, and much more. You’d think he was preparing for a new world economy following the next Apocalypse.
As usual, the accused is claiming the prosecution has it all wrong. “Ooopsie!”
I maintain that a case like this never hits the news unless it’s nailed down tight. Even the Dems realize this guy’s goose is cooked; unlike the Republicans do, no one is rushing to his defense. That’s the thing with Democrats, when one of ours gets caught with his hand in the cookie jar, he’s out of the club. Gone! And I’m fine with that.
I do make room for the fact that in New Jersey, the (currently Democratic) governor gets to name a replacement, so there will be no risk of losing a Senate seat to the opposition. If that were not so, I think we might have seen a different response. Which I would understand.
Republicans do not screw around when servicing their power. It doesn’t matter what one of their guys does, if it puts a seat at risk, they rally around him. Or at least refuse to take any action. See Santos, George, aka The Tommy Flanagan of Congress.”
“Yeah, that’s the ticket!”
And I’m sick and tired of our guys taking the honorable approach and then losing seats.
The most egregious examples were the two impeachments. The Dems built a wall of evidence, brick by brick, which formed an undeniable link to high crimes and misdemeanors. I watched a great deal of the proceedings… they had TFG down cold. There was no other possible conclusion.
But what did the Republicans do? They closed their eyes, maintained that they saw nothing, and voted to acquit. Because to them, there is never an up-side to giving up a seat, a policy, a talking point, or anything, ever.
In politics, there are no style points for coming in second. Republicans play zero-sum, smash-mouth politics. If Dems don’t do the same, they have no hope of containing the Fascist threat.
Like this Fascist threat right here:
Just in case anyone thought TFG was kidding when he said he wanted to start locking up his enemies, he made it clear this weekend that he was dead serious about ending our Republic as we know it.
Now he’s adding unfriendly media outlets, (meaning anyone that’s not in the bag for him), especially NBC and affiliates. He wants investigations, sentences, and executions of his perceived enemies. (Note that “trials” are not included.)
The scary part is that if by some abomination, he gets elected again, I believe he can do it. Last time, there were “adults in the room” with him, to keep him from carrying out his most destructive wishes. He won’t make that mistake again and will surround himself with Yes Men and Hit Men, ready to carry out his most unhinged instructions, despite piddly concerns like “laws” and “the Constitution.”
And with so many Federalist Society appointees on the bench, especially the Big Six on the Supreme Court, I don’t see where there’s anyone to stop him.
And it goes without saying that once he’s in, he’s not leaving until they carry him out on his shield. Or in a giant McDonalds bag. He will find a way to effectively eliminate elections and Republicans will line up right behind him. And needless to say, (but I will anyway), if the Dems ever tried the same thing, Republicans would be calling for not only the National Guard to step in, but the Russians as well. After all, it can’t be an atrocity if it’s in their favor.
There’s still no end in sight to the UAW strike, but did anyone think this was going to end quickly? Nah, it’s got all the hallmarks of a long haul… Overly idealistic demands vs. entrenched business practices that will never, ever, end.
The line has been that the UAW is asking for a 46% increase because that’s how much top executives have had their pay increased over the last couple of years. (Way to use that bailout money, guys!)
One thing I haven’t seen anyone discuss, or even float, is a proposition that rather than bring worker pay up by 46%, they have they claw back some of the dough from the execs, rendering their increase to something like 25%. Then they can meet the philosophical demands of the UAW with a raise that’s the same as management.
It could work. But of course, it will never happen. There
is zero percent chance that any of these boardroom types parts with a single
earned stolen. Not only is it just not done, it would establish
a dangerous precedent for the 1%. Givebacks are for the rank and file, when
times are tough, not the execs. The last thing they want is for any other
industry to follow suit.
Not that I follow the activities of today’s young pop stars, but I’ve been entertained by the coverage of American Goddess Taylor Swift being linked to a famous football player, Travis Kelce of the KC Chiefs.
She attended his game yesterday and watched it from one of the team suites. (What, you think she’s gonna be out there in the stands, with the rest of the riffraff? She’s no Joan Jett… who totally sits out with the fans when she sees an Orioles game. That’s where I first met her.)
Anyway, she was all over the game coverage, with the press frequently asking the players about it during the post-game presser.
While, like I said, I’m not in the habit of following the movements of pop stars, you can’t help but pick things up just by being aware of the culture. Stories about her frequently show up in my Yahoo news feed, she’s on TV all the time, with interviews, news stories, and whatnot.
My opinion regarding Ms. Swift is that She may be one of the most beautiful women ever created. She’s practically perfect. And I have a great deal of respect for how she’s conducted her own career. She makes sound business judgments, writes her own songs, and plays her own instruments, which is an unfortunate rarity, here in the days of pop idols who are all image over substance.
I’ve never read anything about her being a shit-heel, not even from her legendary exes. I’ve never heard one say, “Oh geez, I’m so glad to get away from that raving harpie! What a pill!” Even after she writes a song about them, I’ve never seen them respond with anything of substance. (Granted, I’m not exactly looking, either.)
All her friends seem to stay for life, or if they do leave her orbit, they keep their yaps shut. No one’s writing any tell-alls about what it’s like to be in her posse.
Yet stories of her kindness and consideration to fans abound. And hey, she pushes voting for Democrats, from her home in Tennessee, which takes some guts.
But her songs? Meh. Totally not my style. When she comes out blazing guitars like AC/DC, I’ll get interested. Speaking as a crusty old White guy, shiny, over-processed, pop music is not for me.
So the thing I noticed about the prospect of dating this football player is that this seems to be the first time she’s going against type. She usually dates these pretty-boy pop singers or actors. I haven’t seen her with a big alpha male yet. This Kelce, he plays the tight end position, and these guys are huge, by definition. (He is 6’6”, 260 lbs.) He spends his days in physical battles with other huge dudes. This guy can make her feel protected, like when she’s followed and harassed by the paparazzi idiots. He seems to be a nice guy, like a better-looking “Gronk,” but I admit that all I have to go on is his media presence. He could be an asshole, so who knows?
So, we’ll see how this works out. Maybe it’s a nice change of pace, or maybe it’s something she didn’t know she needed. Either way, she should at least get a new song out of it.