Wednesday, February 03, 2016


A few months ago - whether for spite or for fun - someone put me on Ted Cruz's email list. Late last night I received an appeal from Ted seeking a donation:

"Because you have been one of my most loyal supporters -- I'm reaching out to you first."

Sure, Ted, the check is in the mail.

Three years ago I wrote a piece called "President Cruz?". At the time it was obvious to me (as I'm sure it was as obvious to anyone paying attention) that, even though he had come to Washington only a few months before, the celebrated gas bag from the Lone Star State would be making his bid for the 2016 Republican nomination. So help me Mitch Miller, I never dreamed that the silly bastard would win a single primary. At the time, I neglected to take to account the rip-roaring stupidity of the GOP voters in Iowa. - which brings me to the question that is screaming to be posed:

"Why Iowa?''

Why is this state so crucial to the primary season? With respect to the Republicans, they have not once in their history picked someone who went on to win the nomination - forget about the White House. A state that houses more white people than any other place in a nation that is becoming more-and-more brown by the minute has lost its relevance - assuming it ever had any. The people who decide these things ought to reconsider that states' significance to the electoral process. Just a thought. 

Which brings be back to Teddy Boy: I'm not at all alarmed at the prospect of a Cruz candidacy - amused, yes, but hardy alarmed. In fact, I hope he gets the nomination this summer. There is nothing in the realm of the most twisted possibility that I can foresee that would be as delightfully weird as Ted Cruz playing the part of the right wing's standard bearer for 2016. The guy is so extreme and vulgar that, for people like me who thrive on this stuff, a Cruz run would be a demented dream come to life. Oh, please, fate....

Here is something that is the worst kept secret in Washington: His colleagues in the senate can't stand him. Think about that just for a second. A party that has lowered the bar so far in recent years as to what constitutes "statesman-like behavior" finds Ted too insufferably obnoxious for comfort. That takes some doing. When a right wing politician becomes too extreme for the GOP even, it's time to prescribe some lithium. Seriously.

I don't suspect that Ted is going to be taking the oath of office on January 20, 2017; then again, early in the candidacy of George W. Bush, I never dreamed that one day he would be living in the Executive Mansion. Shit happens, you know?

Should that unthinkable scenario ever come to pass, I'll learn to live with it. As bad as a Cruz administration would be for the country and the world, at least it would never be boring. We must seek these silver linings behind the darkest of clouds.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


The Last 100 Days
by John Toland

This chronicle of the winter and spring of 1945 is a page-turner. It's always oodles of fun to read about the personal, political and psychological implosion of Adolf Hitler! Althouygh written in 1966, the book is still in print and can be ordered off

The Last 100 Days

Mucho recommended.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Stinky Water in Flint

Image result for protests in flint michiganBack in the day they would herd "undesirables" into gas chambers. Things are a bit more subtle in 2016. Gee, we really do live in interesting times. We really do!

Less than two years ago, in an effort to save Michigan a few bucks, the right wing government of that state decided that it would be a perfectly grand idea to switch the drinking water of the city of Flint from the Great Lakes to the Flint River - an industrial sewer. The result of this brilliant decision by Governor Rick Snyder is that the children of that doomed city have effectively been poisoned.

Keep voting Republican.

Image result for protests in flint michiganEmails and documents attained by various journalists via the Freedom of Information Act have proven - beyond a tainted molecule of a doubt - that, almost from the very moment they switched the pipes, the elected officials of the state of Michigan were aware of the magnitude and scope of the environmental catastrophe they had unleashed on the poor citizens of Flint. For a year-and-a-half they worked round the clock to cover up their complicity in the crime. Concerned mothers who sought desperately to seek answers to the questions they asked about the declining health of their children were dismissed as psychos, beggars and thieves; the most vulnerable, the children and the elderly, continued to bathe in and drink of the poisoned water.

This would not have happened if Flint had been a community of affluence. This would not have happened had the residents of Flint not been predominantly African American and poverty stricken. The message could have been clearer had it been etched in gold: 

"Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth"?


To hell with the meek.

Don't try to kid yourselves into believing that this was some sort of industrial "accident". When their plans for the water of Flint were made public, alarm bells were sounded from all corners. It didn't matter as far as Governor Rick was concerned. There were a few bucks to be saved and - come hell or rancid water - he was gonna save 'em.

Are we at the point yet where we can agree that conservatism is destroying this country? How far into the abyss are we willing to hurl ourselves? These people aren't merely incompetent politicians; they're criminally insane. When are we going to wake up and smell the elephant shit?

This is dark comedy at its darkest.

Tom Degan
Goshen, NY


This piece by Flint native Stephen Rodrick, is in this week's Rolling Stone. It ought to be read by everyone with a pulse:

Who Poisoned Flint?/

Was this a great country or what?


Interesting. I went to the atlas on my blog tonight. It tells me where in the world I am being read at any given time. At this hour I am being read in the towns of Snohomish, Washington and Schwenksville, Pennsylvavia. Who would have dreamed?

A tip of the hat to the kind people of Snohomish and Schwenksville!