Why you should hate the Republicans …

Congressional Republicans knew their plan was potentially explosive. They wanted to kill landmark privacy regulations that would soon ban Internet providers, such as Comcast and AT&T, from storing and selling customers’ browsing histories without their express consent.

So after weeks of closed-door debates on Capitol Hill over who would take up the issue first — the House or the Senate — Republican members settled on a secret strategy, according to Hill staff and lobbyists involved in the battle. While the nation was distracted by the House’s pending vote to repeal Obamacare, Senate Republicans would schedule a vote to wipe out the new privacy protections.

On March 23, the measure passed on a straight party-line vote, 50 to 48. Five days later, a majority of House Republicans voted in favor of it, sending it to the White House, where President Trump signed the bill in early April without ceremony or public comment.

A fascinating in-depth look at how the Republicans stole your privacy. You can read the entire article here; and you can catch more of conservative political cartoonist Glenn McCoy’s work here.

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Memorial Day 2017 …

thank you for your sacrifice ...

Today is Memorial Day in the United States, a day known for many years as Decoration Day. It’s a day that means different things to different people.

For some it’s a day for barbecues and picnics or perhaps for attending sporting events, family gatherings, or taking a vacation getaway. Many others will spend the day shopping or perhaps even buying a new car.

Memorial Day is also the traditional start of summer in the United States. Above all, however, it is or should be a patriotic holiday.

But what is patriotism after all?

thank you for your sacrifice ...

For some patriotism is something loud, perhaps a group of people who’ve had a little too much to drink shouting USA! USA! USA!. Or the sound of tens of thousands of motorcycles loudly descending on Washington, D.C. and letting everyone know they are there.

But to me patriotism is something quieter, something better understood in pictures than in sounds.

thank you for your sacrifice ...

thank you for your sacrifice ...

With so much going on this day it’s easy to forget the holiday’s real purpose, which is to honor those American service members who died fighting for the country they loved.

thank you for your sacrifice ...

thank you for your sacrifice ...

War isn’t just about the men and women who make the supreme sacrifice, of course. It’s about their families as well, the people who are left behind to grow old without a husband or wife, father or mother, son or daughter; someone who loved and was loved and is gone forever.

Forever is a very long time.

thank you for your sacrifice ...

thank you for your sacrifice ...

Thank you for your sacrifice to all who died fighting for a vision of America those who sent them to war too often dishonor and disgrace.

thank you for your sacrifice ...

thank you for your sacrifice ...

I hope everyone will take a few moments today to remember the sacrifices that make our enjoyment of today possible.

thank you for your sacrifice ...

Weekly Toon …

More hypocrisy from one of America's biggest deadbeats ...

With domestic scandals pressing in on him from all sides, Donald Trump took the past week off to visit the Middle East and participate in a number of important events in Europe. It was his first trip abroad; and other than bowing to a Saudi king and shoving the prime minister of Montenegro aside, there were seemingly few diplomatic gaffes.

Still, it was kind of a unique trip for an American President. No other American President had ever made Saudi Arabia the first stop on a trip abroad. But Trump was apparently anxious to seal an arms agreement, worth $350 billion over 10 years and $110 billion immediately, with our good friends the Saudis.

You remember the Saudis, of course, a nation best known for giving us Osama bin Laden and fifteen of the nineteen 9/11 hijackers; and also a nation held in such high regard that Congress voted last year to allow 9/11 families to sue the country for its suspected links to the attackers

By the way, Trump went out of his way on this portion of his trip to reassure kings and despots that he wasn’t interested in criticizing them for much of anything, let alone the human rights abuses their regimes routinely engage in.

Then it was off to our closest friends and allies in Europe who came in for a lot of criticism indeed on numerous matters, including the level of their contributions to NATO; an issue that was resolved a long ago time ago.

Tom Janssen, more of whose work can be seen here, is a Dutch editorial cartoonist working for the Netherlands Press Association and the Dutch national daily Trouw.

He captured perfectly the hypocrisy of Trump lecturing anyone about doing their fair share. From what little we know, it seems highly unlikely Trump has ever paid his fair share of Federal taxes, the very taxes that support U.S. military participation in NATO, for example.

Not to mention Trump’s forthcoming tax proposal, which would greatly increase income inequality in the United States by providing massive tax cuts to the rich and powerful (including the Donald himself and members of his family) while shifting the tax burden to those much less well off.

Trump? Fairness? Give me a break!

Our runner-up this week comes from Nate Beeler, the editorial cartoonist for The Columbus Dispatch. It also provides some insightful commentary on Trump’s foreign adventure and diplomatic skills.

And by the way …

don't count on it though ...

Here’s another thing for you to worry about if you’re not a Republican fat cat.

While the rest of the country has been transfixed by Trumpian chaos, members of the Senate have spent the last two weeks talking about taking health insurance from millions of Americans.

There is an alarmingly large chance that they’ll decide to do so. But if they do, they will almost certainly rely on a political sleight of hand to disguise their bill’s damage. Understanding that sleight of hand — and calling attention to it — offers the best hope for defeating the bill.

That quote is from an article by David Leonhardt of the New York Times, an article that is the best brief analysis I’ve seen to date of what is happening with health care legislation in the Senate.

While the rest of us have been focused on Trump’s scandalous behavior the last couple of weeks, a dozen or so white Republican men have been getting together in private behind closed doors to decide just how much they can screw you without provoking a national revolt.

Is it any surprise then that the news would not be good? What else would you expect from a bunch of tired old men who have no interest in understanding the health challenges ordinary Americans face; only how much they can cut to provide tax cuts for their rich and powerful friends.

Like I said, it’s a terrific article and a must read for anyone interested in the future of health insurance; and quite frankly everyone should be interested in that topic.

Because if you think the American health care system is bad now, wait until the Republicans and Trump get done with it.

Don’t believe me? Take a look at what Trump has in store for kids.

Weekly Toon …

Here is Washington's real nut job ...

Not much to add to this toon since it pretty much speaks for itself. It comes to us via Stuart Carlson, whose work you can find more of here.

I like this cartoon because there are definitely times when I think of Trump as a petulant child who just never grew up. But if this article is to be believed, that’s apparently being unfair to children.

Alternatively, to use Trump’s own words, it’s possible the man is a complete nut job. Whatever the case may be, Trump needs psychiatric help big time and it’s apparent he’s needed it for a very long time indeed.

That isn’t going to happen any time soon, however; and that being the case, the United States will continue to suffer the consequences of his mental illness for years to come. Sad for the man to be sure, but sadder still for the American people.

Our runner-up for the week is also from Stuart Carlson and may even be better. You should definitely take a look.

Trump as victim …

Lock him up ... in a psychiatric ward!

It’s a witch hunt, folks; and not just your ordinary kind of witch hunt either. If you believe Donald Trump, he’s the victim of the “the single greatest witch hunt of a politician in American history!”

As David Fitzsimmons, the editorial cartoonist for the Arizona Daily Star whose work is featured here, points out, this is ironic coming from a man who knows a thing or two about inciting a witch hunt against an American President.

Of course, Trump is an incredibly stupid man who knows less about American history than most elementary school students in the United States. So please allow me to make two points.

First, if this is a witch hunt, most people seem to agree that Robert Mueller will tell the American people that’s what it is and that will be the end of the matter for all intents and purposes.

It’s also important to keep in mind that this witch hunt, if that’s what it is, was initiated by a Deputy Attorney General that Trump selected himself, one who was then confirmed by the GOP-controlled Senate.

Nice job, doofus! Congratulations on doing something right for a change.

As with most things Trump says, this is just more bullshit from the bullshitter-in-chief. If he had half a brain, Trump would keep his fat mouth shut and try to do something that would actually benefit the American people.

But, then again, that’s probably asking too much. The man is a clueless narcissist who wouldn’t know what the public interest is if it was staring him in the face.

To put it another way, Trump makes a poor victim. He brought all of this on himself and deserves whatever comes from it.

To use a Trump-speak superlative, he’s the single biggest a**hole to ever occupy the White House, someone who divides the country every day. As such, he deserves no sympathy at all.

Which comes first?

Indeed ...

When will Republicans in Congress decide that enough is enough? Do they need Mr. Trump’s approval ratings to dip below 30 percent? Do they need first to ram through their deeply unpopular agenda? Or it is possible they might at last consult their consciences, and recall that they took an oath to uphold the Constitution?

That quote is from an editorial entitled Did Mr. Trump Obstruct Justice? You can read the entire editorial by clicking the link. The cartoon is from Marshall Ramsey, the editorial cartoonist for the Jackson, Mississippi, Clarion-Ledger, more of whose work is featured here.

Honestly, we are beyond the point of absurdity here. What more can one say about Donald Trump that hasn’t already been said? He disgraces our country every day. If the man had any decency at all, he would recognize he is beyond his depth and resign immediately.

But don’t hold your breath waiting. There is nothing a narcissist revels in more than being the center of attention.

Sad!