The New 5 o’clock Follies

How long has this damned Coronavirus pandemic been happening? It seems like forever.

Trump surrounded by l-r HHS Secretary Alex Azar; Dr. Fauci, Pence, Trump, Dr. Robert Redfield, director of CDC; Surgeon General Jerome Adams. Trump takes lying to a whole new level while tens of thousands of Americans die from Covid-19.

The “highlight” of my day, and this is a facetious statement, is the daily Coronavirus Task Force briefing. These are White House briefings in which infectious disease specialists give usually intelligent information while the president lies his ass off and makes ignorant and irrational outcries about the media that he hates. I call these the “Five O’Clock Follies.”

The original Five O’Clock Follies was a name given to the military briefings to the press which were given at that particular time in the Saigon Rex Hotel during the Vietnam War. Associated Press Saigon bureau chief Richard Pyle described these briefings while Saigon bureau chief during the war, described the briefings as, “the longest-playing tragicomedy in Southeast Asia’s theater of the absurd.”

While the real-life highlight of the White House briefing is given not by Trump but by Anthony Fauci, M.D., the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. The 79-year-old physician is they key medical expert on the Coronavirus Task Force. That task force is chaired by Vice President Mike Pence who fills out the main players of the group. Pence’s job is apparently to stand behind Trump, bobbing his head like a Mike Pence bobblehead.

The media have equated these briefings with Trump’s political rallies which are normally part lies, part exaggeration, part innuendo and part stupidity. And these are just Trump’s roles.

Some media outlets, including CNN, have cut portions of the briefing. Many journalists have said this is more an unpaid political announcement than giving what could be helpful information to a generally fearful public. Some major news outlets, such as The New York Times, have completely avoided showing up at the White House. The Times have said that if need be they can always run a live news feed to their readers.

Here we are at 5:37 p.m. Central Daylight Time in Beaumont, Texas. Our worthless president is on TV for today’s follies. Trump is saying his same old shit. Meanwhile, the current Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is currently 41,379.

The Dems in 2020. ABT!

We are here in post-impeachment America after President Dipshit was acquitted by our corrupt U.S. Senate. The Democrat primary is under way in New Hampshire. This comes after an Iowa caucus that appears to have been run by officials who must have found liquor made from corn that would have otherwise been exported by Iowan farmers to China or some other country that our president prevented by tariffs.

There is no Democrat front-runner for the presidential nomination. That’s no surprise. At the top in no particular order is Pete Buttegieg, Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren and Joe Biden. At the lower end of the scale is Amy Klobuchar, Andrew Yang, Tom Steyer, Michael Bloomberg, Michael Bloomberg, Tulsi Gabbard and I’m sure I’m leaving out someone.

President Grover Cleveland would out perform Donald Trump any day. The former 22nd and 24th president, Cleveland has been dead for more than a century.

The first day of early voting in Texas is February 18. I have no idea who I will vote for this time. One may assume I will vote for a Democrat, if you know me you might guess this, unless a Trump somehow ends up on the ballot. And if that happens at this late of date, one might figure the Revolución is here. We must for the sake of our nation vote for anyone but Trump or ABT, if you will.

My favorite candidate is Pete Buttegieg. He is young, a veteran and not a bomb-thrower. He is also gay. I’m not, although not that there is anything wrong with that. That brings pluses and minuses for him politically. If he wins the nomination, you can bet Trump will make some sort of stupid comment or give him a homophobic nickname. “Gay Peter?” Hey, that would be offensive enough. Perhaps Trump’s folks will see this and give him that handle, thus making the offensiveness of the president all that more toxic. I feel like Mayor Pete is an (not the) adult in the room.

I think behind Mayor Pete I would think Sen. Elizabeth Warren is my preferable candidate. She charts to the port side although not listing way to port like Bernie Sanders.

Don’t get me wrong. I like Bernie. I like the fire in his reasoning. He is an unapologetic democrat-socialist. But he needs to explain what that is to primary voters and will likely need to do so in the General Election.

The other candidates, all I can say is I’d take any of them over Trump. The problem is, there isn’t a lot of time left before the March 3 primary in Texas. So it has become crunch time.

In an election year as important as this one — Trump is a flesh-eating bacteria on our nation — I won’t blow off my vote as I have in the past. There is so much that I despise about the person who rules in the White House. I think he is the most authoritarian president since Nixon, though Trump is much, much worse. If he had a sense of decorum or shame, he would have resigned before being impeached, as did Nixon.

Grover Cleveland, the first Democrat elected to president after the Civil War and who won two different terms in office, was a barfly who cut his consumption of beer to a gallon when he ran for district attorney in Buffalo. He wasn’t the best person to hold the office of president but even since his death more than a century ago, Cleveland would still make a better president than idiot boy-child now in office.

I wonder if my relatives and friends who think Trump is the best thing since sliced bread will feel that way in later years, if they are afforded the chance to do so? I feel perfectly fine with my position.

The real national emergency

–ectomy: n. indicating surgical excision of a part appendectomy; from New Latin ectomiafrom Greek ek– out + –tomy —from Dictionary.com.

Last night a friend mentioned on Facebook how such folly is the declaration of a national emergency by Prez 45 the building of a southern U.S. border wall.

I added in my five pennies that the only national emergency we have these days is in the White House.

“We the People are in dire need of a Trumpectomy.” And with that, right here, right now, I break my own rules in this site to not mention the president’s name. Oh well.

Should you have read from the beginning to just now that I am speaking of the excision of our president.

Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard, you are needed in the Oval Office.

So we harken back to that trio of wacky dudes, The Three Stooges. There are some folks so pretentious enough to see the Stooges as the lowest possible common denominator in comedy or otherwise.

I suppose many who are so opposed to the Stooges abhor the faux violence. I wonder whether those anti-Stooges are likewise put off by mime violence? When I say “mime violence” I mean some cutesy skit where a mime fakes the beating of some invisible villain. It doesn’t matter, I suppose.

But the President. Sigh. Sigh. Get me Dr. Howard, Dr. Fine, Dr. Howard. Stat!!!

Thoughts on a newsy day

Today has been chocked full o’ news. I say that more as an observer of journalism rather than plying that craft, at least for now. I haven’t written for a newspaper or other media outlet in almost 10 years. These days I still work for Uncle Sugar and plan to retire either this fall or the next.

I have been working on a book, a biography of a former director of a government agency. It is, as I still reckon, an approved bio. I would like to wrap it up this year, find an agent and a book contract. Or, preferably, go straight to a publisher.

This blog has kind of fallen from the wayside. I really need to write more, not just to reinstall some discipline, but as well, to make the $8 I spend a month for a web host count.

Back to the day’s news. I woke up to see President 45’s old buddy Roger Stone being released on bond for a host of charges. This afternoon, I watched our Orange President agree to a bipartisan agreement from Congress that will reopen the government for more than 800,000 employees who have been either locked out of their job or forced to work for no pay, for now, two paychecks. The agreement will last three weeks during which time the president may cause another lockout or furlough, or do something so stupid as declare a national emergency on the U.S.-Mexico border.

A rescue team from the Mexican Navy flies on an Australian Navy cargo plane on the way to Indonesia after devastating tsunamis that struck in 2005.
 U.S. Navy photo by Photographer’s Mate 3rd Class Bernardo Fuller

Emergency? What emergency? Well, the Prez had to have a little face-saving since his caving like the Mammoth, and put in his place by a woman, no less. Nancy Pelosi is that woman.

I don’t know why El presidente has invested so much in a wall, gate, barrier. First, it’s a f***ing stupid idea. Prez had his rallying dolts eating up his campaign promise to build a wall and make Mexico pay for it. A wall from sea to shining sea. Or at least from the Gulf of California to the Gulf of Mexico. Although lately, he said it wouldn’t be built where there were natural barriers, like the hundreds of feet of canyon wall in Big Bend National Park.

I am sure the Border Patrol would like a wall built and more agents hired. Their union went big for this dipshit president. I guess our brothers and sisters in the union can agree to disagree. But these guys need to wake up and smell the café.

Speaking of café, I suppose I should take my five-minute Spanish lesson with Duolingo. I wonder how many five-minute Spanish lessons I should have until I am fluent in español?


More old person fun: Colonoscopy

Here I am, drinking my third cup of, coffee today. That is something I rarely do. The reason for consumption of another cup is my hope that it might assist me, to put it delicately, take a dump. I drank a 5-ounce cup of Prepopkit around three hours ago. Coffee stimulates the colon, or so I read.

This disappointment is not because I like defecating. I am supposed to have a colonoscopy as well as some kind of upper gastrointestinal tests early in the morning.

The test is nothing I look forward to although the procedure itself isn’t usually as bad, at least the colonoscopy. It isn’ one of those — you turned 50 so you need a colonoscopy.  In my case, I am 62. My last test was at 49 years of age. I’ve not had one since.

That previous procedure wasn’t fun. Not only was the preparation, with the twisted name GoLightly, god-awful but the test wasn’t so hot either.

I was living in Waco at the time and was a VA patient so I had to drive to Temple, where the Olin Teague VA Medical Center and part of the Texas A & M medical school awaited me.

It takes guts to have a colonoscopy. National Institute of Health image.

My tests are due to possible internal blood loss. I have known I had anemia for several years.  My neurologist prescribed B-12 shots once a month that I must give myself. My primary care doctor, where I now live, in Southeast Texas, ordered the tests due to lab work showing low values relating to my blood. The doctor wanted to determine whether I had some blood loss in my digestive system.

So here I am, almost four hours and movement. I am supposed to drink another six ounces of laxative at 8:00 p.m. Maybe that will, as they say here, “get my bowels in an uproar.” I don’t want to have my test canceled. I’d have to go through all this again.

Crap.