When Stupid Ruled the Land

twentytwentynews, trump, idiocracy

Franklin, Contributor

(Warning: If you are a Trump supporter, then do not attempt to read this because there are big words and opinions that differ from the one you were told to have. It is recommended that you stare at the picture, get angry, blame Obama or Pelosi, and tweet your outrage using any profanity you can spell without asking for help.)

An iconic moment in the orange toddler-king’s rise to the proverbial high chair of political power was when Hillary Clinton made the remark about Trump’s morally bankrupt and dim-witted supporters being “deplorable”.  Let me tell you, those imbeciles were more outraged than when someone slowly explained to them that “heads I win, tails you lose” was a scam perpetrated by liberal youth. Look, I’ve tried to give the Trumpers the benefit of the doubt, but I’ve come to the certain, inescapable conclusion that they are proud of their stupid dipped in ignorance which is then deep-fried in perpetual mean-spiritedness.

History will remember this era in American politics with chapter titles like, “When Stupid Ruled the Land” or “The Whining Rise of Dolt 45”. It’s beyond comprehension that his cult of cretins celebrates his incoherent misspelled tweets and glory in his uncreative, lame-brained insults; until you remember that the only thing surpassing their staggering stupidity is their capacity for jealous hatred.

Ironically, they are as thin-skinned as their idiot idol who loves to hurl rude epithets against his opponents, but is outraged and wounded when he gets the same treatment. Liberals are used to juvenile attacks and have endured insults from conservatives for decades. But, Clinton calls them “deplorable” and, suddenly, they are calling suicide hot-lines, sucking their thumbs, and re-enlisting their security blankets that they retired when they were eight years old.

Well, I’m done trying to be polite and not discuss the obvious. Trump and his Republican Party are truly a bunch of morons. They’ve put people in cabinet positions that would have to learn a thing or two just to rise to a base level of incompetence. Although, that was part of Trump’s meathead plan, he forgot that the repercussions would have a negative impact on him and his drooling base, as well. For example, his dipshit idea to cut taxes for the wealthiest and deprive people of basic healthcare at a time when the economy is doing well and there are legitimate concerns about inflation and over-valuation in the stock market. Oh, and that little thing about exploding the debt and deficit. Yep, classic dumbass move! However, the Trumpsters are content with their tiny bonuses or raises and don’t see how they are getting screwed. Well, not yet and, to be honest, someone may still need to draw them a picture using stick figures and crayons.

At first, we could all handle Republicans trading in their morality because we knew that they were hypocrites and that it was a sham from the get-go. That’s why they had no problem voting for the mush-for-brains “pussy grabber”.  However, it was surprising that they decided that deliberate ignorance and intellectual dishonesty would be their new rallying cry. Sort of like how during the election the economy was teetering on disaster and America was a shithole, but it somehow magically changed when Trump changed the drapes in the Oval Office to a “Third-World Dictator” gaudy gold.

America is rapidly becoming a kakistocracy, even if Republicans have no clue what that word means. As liberals, we’ve got to come to terms that just because we’re smarter doesn’t mean we’ll win. It’s time to find ways to appeal to people’s emotions again or we’re doomed to be ruled by dumbest and meanest among us.

In the meantime, y’all better buckle up because this is about to get a whole lot worse. Just wait until the bloated orange genius and his sycophants try to react to the unexpected crisis that’s inevitably going to come our way. He’s probably already got a rough draft of the tweet blaming Obama while bragging about the size of the crowd that saw it.

As a nation we’ve survived through many obstacles, I just hope we can survive this new wave of self-inflicted stupidity until 2020. Otherwise, we may as well start banning books, burning scientists and teachers at the stake, and start using Magic 8 balls to guide our policy decisions. In all fairness, I think Magic 8 balls have a better track record than Trump…

 

Clete wrote something that offended me- I’m going to my safe place

facebook, censorship, intolerance

Clete Wetli, Contributor

I was incredulous this last week when the morons at Facebook banned me from posting to groups for a week because they claimed my article link had either offended someone or it had been reported as spam. Are you fucking kidding me? Honestly, it could have been Franklin’s piece, our Canine-American editor, but what kind of anencephalic idiot bans a liberal Yorkie, without an opposable thumb, that can type?

Over the last few years, some very fragile and whiny liberals have politely requested that I not post on their groups because they felt my posts were “off-topic”. I’ve complied, even though I felt their polite censorship was counter-productive and ridiculous. Oh, the horrors of having to endure an opinion that isn’t exactly the same as yours…

One of the reasons mainstream Americans can’t stand liberals is because of this kind of stupid shit. When did we get so overly-sensitive that we feel it’s imperative to ban or report someone who doesn’t share the exact same view we have? I know it’s really difficult to just scroll past an opinion article on a Facebook group that was set up for community organizing, but do you really think that it’s a good idea to report or censor that person who’s on your side?

If what I just wrote offends you, then please go to your fucking safe place and watch your puppy video and use your inhaler until you think you can handle more. C’mon folks, we’re better than this. I thought Democrats and liberals were all about free speech. Apparently, that’s only true if people agree with you.

This is exactly why I’ve spent the last several years going on the Dale Jackson Show on WVNN as a weekly guest and hosted my own liberal talk show for a year on that hard-right conservative station. Dale Jackson, unlike some liberals, actually welcomes opposing points of view because it makes for good radio and entertaining, thoughtful, and confrontational debate. Yet, many liberals are too afraid to even talk to Dale and that, my friends, is another big reason we keep losing.

It’s easy to sit behind a keyboard and troll and complain about things you don’t like. It takes a little courage to articulately express your opinion and engage in some meaningful debate. So, whoever decided to turn me or Franklin over to the Facebook gestapo- you won for a very brief moment, but we will be back. You can stew in self-righteous anger and indignation and file as many complaints as you like.

Or, maybe you could try writing an opposing opinion or going on a talk show and defending your viewpoint. Maybe, you could do something more than filing an anonymous complaint or showing up to rallies with twenty people sporting clever hand-made signs bitching about the injustices of the world.

Look, I get it, but liberals need to get the fact that you can’t preach tolerance while practicing intolerance. People have written some truly nasty commentary on my work and expressed some morally bankrupt opinions on my Facebook page. You know what? I let them. I heard them. I engaged them. I may not have changed their mind, but I let them talk. I let them because people could then see the folly of their arguments and the flaws in their points. They were self-evident. That’s what free speech is all about. You know what else? I learned a few things from the people I vehemently disagreed with. It made my points stronger and my arguments better.

Enjoy your safe space, my deeply offended friend. When you come out, you’re still going to have to deal with reality and deal with opinions you don’t like. If you’d like to actually start winning some elections, it would be really fucking sensible to quit censoring folks that are on your side and learn how to listen to those you oppose.

If you think I’m offensive now, just wait until my book comes out… Until then, feel free to boldly make your anonymous comments and complaints to Mark Zuckerberg, the guy who sold ads to Russians who posed as fake Americans to meddle in our election for Trump.

That’s all, snowflake, you can go cuddle with your puppy video…

I know you are, but what am I?

trump, strategy, blame

Franklin, Contributor

The imbecile just tweeted a fake GIF of himself hitting Hillary in the head with a golf ball. The moron just flipped on the Paris Accord and flopped back again and may still waffle in the wind depending on his whim. The douche canoe (yes, I heard that pejorative slang once before) is making the entire UN nervous because they think he’s exactly as stupidly unpredictable as Kim Jung Un and no one really wants the war that will ensue over two small penises bragging over which one’s bigger. Oh, the crowd was the biggest ever, regardless of the event, and his hands are bigly huge, the biggest if you look and you know what that really means.

No matter how much time elapses, Trump still epically sucks, he’s blindingly incompetent, grossly thin-skinned, and we know he’s, without one doubt, the very worst we could have elected to lead our great nation.

He just called the pathologically maniacal leader of North Korea “Rocket Man” and taunted him for having long gas lines in his country due to the sanctions we’ve imposed. Of course, that’s the path to mature diplomacy. He embarrasses our nation daily and his supporters find it cause for celebration as they spit on every institution we hold dear.

It makes one wonder if America finally got the president it deserved after decades of celebrating intellectual mediocrity and making excuses for collective complacency. I mean, there’s no still no excuse for Honey Boo Boo or The Apprentice. We’ve yet to figure out that the world doesn’t hate us for our freedoms, they hate us for our arrogance, ignorance, and delusional sense of superiority.

I’m a Canine-American, a lowly dog as they say, and even I know better than to shit where I eat. I am amazed at the Trumpster humans and their willingness to blindly follow the Orange one. They believe he is one of them, although he has never felt a day of their struggle or an ounce of their pain. They tuned into his show and think that his ability to fuck people out of their money makes him a successful businessman. Enough time has passed, but it still feels surreal that he won the presidency.

Each day, each hour, he finds new ways to demean the office and to destroy the things that made our nation strong and enviable. He is an open wound that festers and tolerates no ointment or salve. He is the personification of malignancy posing as buffoonery.

What he lacks in wit, he makes up for in juvenile immaturity and reckless, stubborn arbitrary decision making. Thank the Almighty, he doesn’t drink, but he sure makes everyone else have a few more than they had intended.

Somehow, some way, we will survive him. Maybe, it’s the wake-up call our nation needed to put down their over-priced lattes and smart phones and give a real damn about what’s going on that truly matters. Maybe, as we float from one cringing moment to the next, we may again learn to value relevant experience, statesmanship, and wisdom. Maybe, politicians will learn to talk more directly about their genuine values and thoughtful plans instead of worrying about how it will play in the polls. Each time I see Trump snuggle with an evangelical, it makes me want to eat the stuffing in the couch.

Indeed, the anomaly of the asshole we call the Trump should teach us all something about the strengths and fragilities of our republic.

Yet, I can’t help but worry that we are on a dangerous precipice. This is either our moment of existential truth or our moment of inevitable, self-imposed doom.

Somehow, we’ve got to change the conversation and get our country back on track, but not backward. I can’t have another debate with a Trump ass-licker that simply amounts to “I know you are, but what am I?” or “Some Democrat did it, too”.

I need to install a count-down clock before I lose my mind. I never thought we’d see the day where George W. looked like a genius in comparison. Maybe, he just didn’t have Twitter.

The Unholy Power of Confirmation Bias

confirmation, bias, facebook

Clete Wetli, Contributor

There is new evidence that the Russians interfered with the 2016 U.S. election by purchasing targeted social media ads to promote misinformation and fake news. Obviously, there are troubling questions about how they knew which specific geographic targets to select and if that was coordinated using people from Trump’s campaign apparatus or from the info they hacked from voter registration databases. As more investigatory details emerge from the Russia probe, what remains clear is that many Americans are gullible because they are entrenched in confirmation bias.

They were ingenious because most of these ads didn’t mention candidate names or political parties. Instead, they focused on divisive social issues and were designed to spark outrage. Of course, the outraged viewer often shared the planted post and it soon had a viral life of its own as post shares increased exponentially.

Confirmation bias certainly isn’t new, but the way political strategists have learned to exploit it is groundbreaking. Typically, this phenomenon has been associated with scientific research to describe the tendency of people to interpret information, especially ambiguous information, in a way that reinforces their preconceived ideas or beliefs. More recent research of confirmation bias has shown that it affects everything from selective memory to food preferences, and most importantly, political views.

Prior to the rise of social media and endless cable news cycles, the problem clearly existed, but had not metastasized into the malignant epidemic that is abundantly evident today. Much of this spurred by the algorithms in search engines and social media platforms that try to hypothesize what information and advertising you would most like to consume. Often, we share articles and information we like with our friends on social media and most of these friends hold a similar political belief or worldview. This effect can cause people who had little interest in voting to decide to finally get involved. This happens on both sides of the aisle. During this last election, the Russians figured out how to rile up Trump’s base enough to get them to the polls in the targeted districts that swung the Electoral College in Trump’s favor.

The unholy power of confirmation bias is immutable and dangerous. It causes people to reject contradictory evidence and to eschew diversity of thought and opinion. Right now, it can be seen in the extreme polarization of partisan politics. Although conservative and liberal ideologies have little in common, they do, indeed, have things in common. However, in today’s political environment it is becoming a rarity for the extremes of both sides to admit any commonality at all.

For liberals, it’s important that we realize the power of this phenomenon and to avoid the “echo-chamber” trap that conservatives fell into long ago. It may mean liking some conservative Facebook pages or a friending a political figure with opposing views. Sometimes, your peers will question those choices, but it’s important to tell them that you are doing it to simply consider opposing views and to learn what others are thinking and why.

The Russians knew that Americans were lazy consumers of news and opinion. They exploited that as they actively interfered in our election. Our best defense against this intrusion is to learn to not believe everything we read at face-value. We need to do more research and read from different sources. We need to expose ourselves to different points of view. Occasionally, we can recognize commonality or even validate a sound position from our opposition knowing it didn’t come from “our” side.

Lately, there seem to be too many politicians that are solely focused on preaching to the choir. They aren’t engaging in substantive debate with the opposition because they feel the will learn nothing useful. They’re certainly not trying to genuinely understand the foundation of opposing views. Yet, that’s the key to winning the debate and finding common ground if, and where, it exists.

A little skepticism never hurts. For liberals to win, we can’t just exclusively listen to each other, we’ve got to hear from the other side periodically. Even my crazy conservative neighbor is like the clichéd broken clock- he’s right twice a day. Although the sooner we replace him, the better.

Facebook faces backlash over Russian meddling

Legalizing marijuana would help Alabama grow

legalize, marijuana, alabama

Franklin, Contributor

Hey! Franklin here, your Canine-American editor of twentytwentynews.com who’s been watching Alabama tie itself into knots trying to figure out how to raise enough money to pay for basic public services. Now, of course, I don’t smoke pot because my paws aren’t exactly equipped for rolling joints or even using a lighter for that matter, but I do know that it’s pretty stupid and very expensive for the state to be locking up people for smoking weed.

However, I do know some cats who are way wasted on the catnip and if you private message me, I’ll be happy to tell you where they are right now…

As much as AG Jeff Sessions, who could stand a bong hit or two, wants people to think that legalizing marijuana will usher in a new age of drug-crazed depravity, research clearly shows otherwise. Sessions probably thought the movie ‘Reefer Madness’ was a documentary. Contrary to Sessions’ beliefs, the states that have legalized marijuana aren’t seeing significant increases in crime, but instead, they are seeing huge increases in revenue that they’re using for education, healthcare, and, yes, substance abuse prevention.

Gee, maybe Alabama could even pay for a few badly needed roads with that kind of dough.

The point is that Alabama is missing out in many ways. First, think about the jobs that could be created here, especially in rural Alabama where it’s hard to attract high-tech and manufacturing. Second, imagine all the money the state could save by not spending precious taxpayer dollars on judicial proceedings and incarceration. Also, there are proven medical benefits to using marijuana for a variety of purposes including chronic pain relief. Wouldn’t that make more sense than prescribing people highly addictive opioids and other psychotropic chemicals?

It seems to me that the same people opposed to legalizing marijuana in Alabama were also the same people that opposed Sunday liquor sales, the lottery, motor-voter registration, and, for a time, indoor toilets. They probably also hate dancing and only watch ‘Footloose’ if they’re sure they won’t get caught! I hate to tell them that marijuana is already one of Alabama’s biggest cash crops and it makes zero sense that the state isn’t legally able to tax it.

If people abuse a substance and become a harm to others, then punish their behavior. Folks have been using marijuana throughout history and it’s just stupid that we suddenly decided to ban it a few decades ago. Used responsibly, some good things can come from it. Personally, I think it helped the Beatles go from ‘I wanna hold your hand’ to ‘I am the walrus’ and I’ll always be grateful for that.

Folks, the War on Drugs has been a complete and utter failure. It’s ruined the lives of millions of Americans and, guess what, people are still using mind-altering substances. Yet, we’ve got some weird double standards when it comes to legality. Alcohol has killed countless people, but there’s yet to be one single overdose fatality related to marijuana. Well, there may have been one dumbass who choked to death on Cheetos, but you get the point.

Look, people in this state would rather kiss their grandma on the lips at Thanksgiving than raise taxes. Well, that might be a Mississippi thing. Anyway, it’s time for Alabama to quit being at the bottom of every list and twenty years too late. Our state simply needs the money. Plus, there’s no denying that Alabama could use the jobs. It could even help existing businesses like Mamie’s Famous Cheese Wafers, Golden Flake, and Wickle’s Pickles. It would surely help a lot folks get through this next Republican primary season of political mudslinging ads without committing random acts of violence…

So, take a minute and think it all out. If you do, you’ll see that it could make a huge positive difference in our state. I’ll leave you with one last thought and then I’ve got to go bury this bone in the backyard.

Like many Alabama conundrums, the solution is obvious. It’s time for people to quit being on the fence and take a stand for the legalization of marijuana. We’ve spent too much time and too much money spinning our wheels and throwing people in jail. It’s time for Alabama to grow.

During Harvey some think price gouging OK

price, gouging, hurricane, harvey

 

Clete Wetli, Contributor

In Trumplandia, the lack of ethics, basic morality, common decency, and social norms have become a sad, new status quo. Yet, I had to look twice when I saw an article in Forbes that genuinely advocated and promoted price gouging during an historic natural disaster. Yeah, you heard that right.

Here’s the link to the piece written by Tim Worstall, a Fellow at the Adam Smith Institute:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2017/08/27/hurricane-harvey-is-when-we-need-price-gouging-not-laws-against-it/#1d89826913fa

Basically, Worstall argues that price-gougers should be thanked rather than punished because the law of supply demand is helped when scarce resources are allocated to “more valuable uses”. In this case, Worstall contends the person that can afford $99 for a case of water in Houston is a “more valuable use” of that water than the person who dies of thirst because they only have $50. Of course, Mr. Worstall, what were we dumb liberals thinking? Certainly, people with more money are way more valuable than useless poor people.

Oh, he’s not done. Worstall ends his linguistic fellatio of unfettered capitalism by positing this brilliant gem, “Price gouging is the market’s get out of jail free card in the wake of a disaster, bringing supply and demand into accord–yet we try our damnedest to imprison people for employing our most effective tool. We really need to change the laws here.”

I know! I had to walk away from it a minute and let an insane torrent of profanity loose before I could address Worstall’s privileged, fraudulent syllogism and vulgar rationalization of human exploitation and unbridled greed.

The obvious counter to Worstall’s argument is that regardless of whatever economic theory he espouses at the ivory tower of Adam Smith Institute; he is a subhuman piece of shit with no moral compass or an iota of compassion if he thinks that it’s ok to deny people aid during a disaster because they can’t afford it. Perhaps, the only human being that might be worse would be Trump who allowed the Border Patrol to remain open during the hurricane evacuation in hopes of catching illegal immigrants that were fleeing for their lives. This is the butt-ugly truth behind the conservative love affair of the “free market”.

It’s in Worstall’s piece that you can plainly see how this embrace of unfettered and unregulated capitalism is foundational to the racism, the sexism, and the vilification of poverty that entwines modern conservative ideology and policy.

This is why Republicans voted against relief funding for Hurricane Sandy and it’s why the relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina were insufficient. Conservatives are terrified that someone may get something for nothing or that someone they deem undeserving may get a benefit. This sick way of thinking goes beyond price-gouging advocacy or offset funding for disaster relief, it even shows up in stupid ways like demanding drug testing for food stamp recipients.

I’m a liberal because I’m a decent human being that cares about others. Scumbags like Tim Worstall are why I’m a loud activist that will fight to his dying day to keep people like him from inflicting damage on the world. There’s no good argument for price-gouging. There’s not a place on this earth or any imaginable situation in which profiting off the suffering of others is morally acceptable.

In the era of Trump, we’ve got to stand against this type of bullshit. This is the kind of garbage that fuels the white supremacists and other mental midgets that seek justification for their prejudice, xenophobia, and avarice.

Mr. Worstall, I don’t know you, but what you wrote appeals only to the extreme worst of human nature. Because of morally bankrupt assholes like you, we’re stuck with a President that’s the epitome of whoring selfishness.

Resisting only counts if you vote

Clete Wetli, Contributor

After the shocking election of a narcissistic con-man as President of the United States, it’s only natural for intelligent citizens with a heart to embrace the idea of active resistance. Trump’s regressive agenda deserves the most powerful opposition that we can muster. But, it’s important to remember that all of this passionate and earnest resistance will only count if you vote. That’s why our message has to resonate forcefully amongst people who think their vote just doesn’t matter. They have to be persuaded how their voice truly matters and why joining the resistance is worth their valuable time, effort, and resources.

For the 2016 presidential election, 59.7% of registered voters actually got up off the couch to cast their ballots.  Believe it or not, that’s actually 1.1% more than in 2012, but it still means that even in a contentious race that 2 out of 5 registered voters didn’t even bother. Honestly, it could have changed everything.

Indeed, our ability to dramatically increase voter turnout is the most critical thing we can do to elect candidates that will move our nation forward.

Conservatives shudder in fear at the thought of more people voting. That’s why they’ve fought so hard to restrict access to the ballot box with voter ID laws, the elimination of early voting, and refusing to allow elections on any day but Tuesday. It’s precisely why they’ve turned gerrymandering into a science.

Conservatives want people to feel like their voices are just drowned out and that their votes don’t count for much. This is how they win. When you couple that with their obsession with gerrymandering, it’s why they have more seats even when we have more popular votes.

It’s time for liberals to get really serious about GOTV efforts. It’s also time for us to find messages that universally resonate, rather than trying to align one-hundred distinct messages crafted around one-hundred different interest groups. GOTV only works if the message is concise, clear, and compelling.

Liberals have got to start touting their successes and counteract the constant negativity of conservatives who have painted our government as corrupt, ineffective, and oppressive. They have used this narrative not only with our government, but also with our media and it’s worked for them because it’s caused voter apathy and disillusionment with our most sacred institutions.

We’ve got to help people remember that our representative democracy works when people get involved and, most importantly, vote. We know, of course, that our government won’t solve every problem or cure every societal ill. However, we also know that the “wrecking ball” approach or “dismantling of the administrative state” will do irreparable harm to America.

This last election was a crossroads for America. Unfortunately, we are already seeing what can happen when the wrong choices are made. Liberals, this is our wake-up call and this our time to rise up like we have never done before. Each day, the conservatives are destroying the real progress that we have made as a united people. Make no mistake, they seek to take us backward and they seek to thwart our progress. They will always put profits over people, power over independence and oppression over diversity. Now you may think this is hyperbole, but ask yourself about their agenda, their accomplishments, and the agenda of those who support their causes.

Under Trump, they are emboldened as never before and it is up to us to stop them. The only way we can do this is to rally around a concise, clear, and compelling message and to convince people why their vote is so critical.

Resistance is futile if you don’t vote.