Going into the fifth month of this coronavirus pandemic, with 2,222,600 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 119,131 deaths due to the disease, as of the morning of June 20, Trump is starting his campaign rallies in Tulsa, OK, the site of the 1921 Greenwood Massacre. Great way to address the two pandemics hitting the U.S. right now: COVID-19 and racism.
Cram those Trumpers into an arena, with our without masks and definitely without social distancing the day after Juneteenth Day. The most racist president in 100 years brings his equally racist followers to the place where a thriving African American community once stood, before racists attacked and bombed it, killing hundreds of men, women and children.
The Trumpers started getting in line on Monday, June 15, just for their chance to see and hear their Dear Leader once again. It was going to be big! It was going to be stupendous! Close to 100,000 supporters inside and outside of the arena, listening to Trump hurl insults and racial slurs, often in the same sentence. They would hear about how they were winning while being victims … yes victims, of the Deep State and the Fake News … but they were winning!
Racial slurs for the coronavirus, racial slurs for Hispanics, that fat face smile for the equally fat faces in the crowd … well, kind of a crowd. There were a lot of empty seats in the BOK Center in Downtown Tulsa. Trump blamed it on the fake news and the extreme left wing for disrupting the event that had, according to the Tulsa Fire Department, just over 6,000 people I guess that’s winning.
The funny part is, after listening to the Orange Douchebag brag about how large his event would be, how many people would be in Tulsa just to hear him bloviate; after his comical tweet: “Any protesters, anarchists, agitators, looters or lowlifes who are going to Oklahoma please understand, you will not be treated like you have been in New York, Seattle, or Minneapolis. It will be a much different scene!” After all of that he claims he is the victim of some left wing conspiracy that blocked his followers from getting into his rally.
He started his Tulsa speech by saying the silent majority is stronger than ever. That seems to be true. It is solidly in Joe Biden’s camp by around 10 points. Some polls have Biden with a larger percentage of that silent majority.
For whatever reason Trump believes the race-baiting and anti-young people messages of the 1968 Nixon campaign will work 52 years later.
Fifty-two years … those of us who remember 1968 — the Tet Offensive, the Walter Cronkite message from Vietnam, President Lyndon Johnson declaring he would not run for re-election, the murders of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Bobby Kennedy, the police riots at the 1968 Democratic National Convention, the Paris Peace Talks falling apart on the eve of the 1968 presidential elections, Richard Nixon and Spiro Agnew being elected. All with the backdrop of civil rights and anti-war demonstrations — and riots, bloody, violent weeks of unrest with whole sections of major cities burned to the ground. Read that again: whole sections of cities burned to the ground.
There are parts of Detroit that still haven’t been renewed. Parts of Los Angeles forgotten, New York City, Newark … every major city that was hit with riots, the language of the unheard.
Those of us who remember 1968 are not hoping for a return. We can always listen to Beggars Banquet, The White Album, Electric Ladyland, Wheels of Fire, White Light/White Heat, We’re Only In It For the Money, Tell Mama, At Folsom Prison, In Search of the Lost Chord, Cheap Thrills, Anthem of the Sun … Do you know how ground-breaking that album was, for 1968? Not just because Mickey is on it.
Those of us who remember 1968 don’t often remind ourselves of the year (other than the music maybe) because of all the horror that followed, primarily because the wrong candidate became president. Wrong, despite the EPA and the National Environmental Policy Act, Clean Air Act, Endangered Species Act, Marine Mammal Protection, Safe Drinking Water — Earth Day was established on his watch.
Richard Nixon was the wrong person to become president because: 1) He committed treason during the 1968 campaign by secretly undermining the Paris Peace Talks that could have ended the Vietnam War by 1969; 2) Nixon set up a secret surveillance state based on his enemies list that, it turns out, had hundreds of people and organizations on it. With this White House run secret intelligence and enforcement group Nixon managed to violate the civil liberties of thousands and further the racist and exclusionary policies of the police state set up to “protect” the upper classes from slaves and poor people.
Sure, slavery had been over for about 103 years by the time Nixon ran for president in 1968 (his second run) but African Americans were still denied the basic rights we white folks take for granted. Plus, they were more likely to be targeted for harassment by police — In other words Nixon’s “Law and Order” campaign slogan.
It’s just that in 1968 it wasn’t just black and brown people Nixon wanted to drop his law and order boot on, he was also targeting the white hippie kids that didn’t want to get haircuts or wear sensible clothing, you know, the ones demonstrating against the Vietnam War.
That’s the Law and Order Donald J. Trump is trying to emulate and bring back to the political landscape. Turns out a lot of the young people from 1968 were old people in 2016 and thought, “We lived through Nixon, how bad could Trump get?”
We’re finding out the answer to that question. The Orange Douchebag has none of the laudable achievements that give Richard Nixon at least some good credit. In fact Trump is working hard to undo what Nixon had done to save our planet.
He also believes the Black Lives Matter protest, with whatever law enforcement violence he and his Roy Cohn, Bill Barr, can gin up, will be his sweltering summer of violence he can use to swing the voters to him.
There’s a guy on the Internets, Facebook and YouTube primarily, who annoys the hell out of me, but for the most part shares many of my views. He is hosted and supported by RT, a Russian propaganda outlet that is registered by the Department of Justice as a “foreign agent.” That being said, Lee Camp, the annoying person of whom I write, is one of the extreme left lefties that make the Trump camp salivate at the possibility of hanging Lee Camp around the Biden campaign’s neck. That won’t happen.
At any rate Lee Camp has a video in which he explains several things he claims the mainstream media won’t tell us about law enforcement. I had actually learned some of them from the so-called mainstream media years ago, but it’s information everyone concerned about changing the role of policing in America should know.
Camp doesn’t link his information piece to the “Law and Order” campaign slogan and its racist origins, but the connection is obvious.
Then of course there is the voter suppression by the Republican Party wherever they have the power to do so. Forcing people to vote in person during a deadly pandemic — choose your safety or your right to vote. In Kentucky, for instance, officials have closed many polling stations, mostly in precincts for black and brown people — poor people. In one Kentucky county there is only one polling station for more than 600k voters. Stay home on election day, or vote and take the risk of getting horribly sick.
Trump and the GOP are betting enough people are stupid enough to believe vote-by-mail is somehow a way to commit voter fraud on a massive scale, despite the fact that we have been voting by mail for decades in this country. It’s just one more way to try to suppress the vote.
The GOP will be going into overdrive to try and win this election, or at least salvage control of the U.S. Senate. They went all in with Trump, refusing to examine the evidence that was presented by the impeachment managers, and the evidence that could have been brought into the impeachment trial of the Senate, led by Moscow Mitch McConnell and the U.S. Senate — The Republican Party of Donald Trump cannot disavow their Dear Leader now.
John Bolton, the neo-con who helped bring us the Iraq War and was once Trump’s National Security Advisor, will have his book officially for sale on Tuesday. In it Bolton pulls no punches. He said the Trump White House engaged in “obstruction of justice as a way of life.” Bolton has been doing the talk shows, telling everyone willing to give him camera time Trump is unfit to be president.
Of course Bolton didn’t want to share this information in the House inquiries. He waited until he could make millions in a book deal. Yes, Bolton did say he would testify before the Senate trial if called upon, but he knew that wasn’t going to happen. For months Moscow Mitch was telegraphing his intention to make the impeachment trial meaningless.
John Bolton is a dick, but his book confirms what many of us strongly suspected and echoes what other former Trump Administration officials have said.
As for the coronavirus this morning: In his speech Saturday Trump told his followers he wanted to slow down the COVID-19 testing because the new cases were making him look bad. Since then his aides have been telling news outlets he was just kidding, that he is frustrated at the small crowd in Tulsa.
Maybe Trump is also frightened because six members of his advance team tested positive for COVID-19 in Tulsa. Yeah, this fucking hoax is hitting close to the bone. On Tuesday Trump will be visiting extreme hotspots on Arizona: Yuma and the Phoenix. He wants to stand next to a border wall in Yuma and then address another bigly indoor crowd. If someone wanted to cause a great spike in an community already over-stressed by the pandemic, a rally in an arena would be the way to do it.
As of today the novel coronavirus is surging across the South and Southwest. It never really improved in Los Angeles County, but COVID-19 is spreading quickly elsewhere. This isn’t the second wave, we are still in the first wave. In California there are 178,720 confirmed cases, but experts say the number is probably much higher because the U.S. was not taking the virus seriously in November and December of last year when the disease was making its way into the U.S. via West Coast ports of entry.
Over 5,500 people have died in California from COVID-19, about half of them in Los Angeles County.
In his briefing on Monday, California Governor Gavin Newsom said the statistics for COVID-19 are sobering. In the past two weeks there has been a 16% increase in new cases and an 11% increase in of patients in intensive care. We are six weeks into reopening the state and it isn’t looking great. Newsom said, “Those that suggest we’re out of the woods, those that suggest this somehow is going to disappear, these numbers tell a very, very different and sobering story.”
You can watch Newsom’s briefings on Facebook here.
Nationwide: Over 2.23 million confirmed cases and 122,283 deaths due to COVID-19. In Florida they have more than 3k new cases just this morning. The state government has been so bad in fighting the pandemic Doctors Without Borders have set up shop to care for the state’s agricultural workers.
Will we see Major League Baseball in 2020? The players might be voting on a possible 60-game season today, Playoffs … not sure how that will go. The league just closed all spring training facilities because several members of the Philadelphia Phillies organization tested positive for the coronavirus.
The NBA will finish its season at the Disney World Resort in Florida, despite the state being one of top COVID hotspots in the nation. The resort has been turned into a bubble, with extreme protocols to keep everyone involved as safe as possible.
The coronavirus isn’t the only issue for the league and players: social injustice and racism. Commissioner Adam Silver said any players that choose to opt out of playing, for either health or social injustice reasons, will not be disciplined. Some big names have talked about playing while the nation is going through this racial unrest and whether it is appropriate or not. Kyrie Irving, Dwight Howard and Lou Williams, to name just three.
Lakers and Clippers fans can expect to see their teams in July. Also, Major League Soccer is having a 2020 tournament at the Disney World Resort. The LA Galaxy and LA Football Club should do very well.
Everyone would like to get back to normal, whatever that might look like after COVID-19. We don’t know what normal will mean when there’s a vaccine and proper testing, but at the very least we want to see our sports. Right now that means we only get to watch them on TV.
It will be interesting to see how the media is included, if our LAPX reporter will have some reports from baseball and basketball.
Tiz The Law, with Manny Franco riding, won the Belmont Stakes on Saturday and NASCAR’s Talladega Geico 500 at the Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama is in a rain delay, after getting postponed on Sunday.
Some asshole hung a noose in the garage of Darrell “Bubba” Wallace, the only African American in NASCAR’s top series. He’s with the Richard Petty Motorsports team. NASCAR announced they were investigating the incident with the FBI. The best part of that story was the support from every team and garage as they pushed Wallace’s #43 car — Richard Petty’s number — to the front of the lineup.
Good for NASCAR and all the teams and drivers involved. First for getting behind the banning of the Confederate flag at all NASCAR events and facilities and then for their support of Wallace.
Ryan Blaney won the race.
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Top photo is the Bubba Wallace selfie on Instagram
Tim Forkes started as a writer on a small alternative newspaper in Milwaukee called the Crazy Shepherd. Writing about entertainment, he had the opportunity to speak with many people in show business, from the very famous to the people struggling to find an audience. In 1992 Tim moved to San Diego, CA and pursued other interests, but remained a freelance writer. Upon arrival in Southern California he was struck by how the elected government officials and business were so intertwined, far more so than he had witnessed in Wisconsin. His interest in entertainment began to wane and the business of politics took its place. He had always been interested in politics, his mother had been a Democratic Party official in Milwaukee, WI, so he sat down to dinner with many of Wisconsin’s greatest political names of the 20th Century: William Proxmire and Clem Zablocki chief among them. As a Marine Corps veteran, Tim has a great interest in veteran affairs, primarily as they relate to the men and women serving and their families. As far as Tim is concerned, the military-industrial complex has enough support. How the men and women who serve are treated is reprehensible, while in the military and especially once they become veterans. Tim would like to help change that.