Sunday, August 23, 2020

Yes, Biden's DNC Speech was masterful

There was quite a buzz about Joe Biden's address which wrapped up the Democratic National Convention on Friday night.

It's not an exaggeration to say that it would be tough to find someone who wasn't impressed with the speech.

In fact, even Fox News talking heads had to give Mr. Biden props for the effort.

By the time some of you have read this, we will all have had a taste of what the RNC is all about. No, I won't be watching. Just don't have the stomach for it. A Who's Who of GOP sycophants fawning all over Dear Leader? Just not my cup of tea.

Having said that, I will be checking in on cable news and social media to get a sense of how the GOP's big show is going over.

But as far as Team Blue's historic, virtual Convention is concerned, it went quite well, exceeding just about everyone's expectations.

It helped considerably to keep the Democrats in a strong position with November 3rd coming just around the bend.

"Bulldog Ben" Basile

(c) 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

Monday, August 17, 2020

The Glaciers of Greenland are

The glaciers of Greenland are retreating at a frightening pace.

One of the sad illusions to which many of us cling tightly is that humanity will eventually “get it” and we’ll get off our collective ass and finally act.

That may or may not happen.

What I know for certain is that a lot of the damage that’s been done can never be reversed.

Scientists who are keeping an eye on the loss of ice on Greenland’s continent are now saying that the losses will not stop even if the planet stopped warming today.

And we all know it won’t.

So the signs keep coming. If you understand the gravity of the situation, you don’t need any more evidence.

There are, of course, many who don’t believe the evidence. The evidence that gets clearer every day.

The sad truth is that in so many cases, those are the people who could do something about it.

So we keep slouching toward that day of reckoning. The day when it becomes actually impossible to deny the reality of what’s happening.

And then we get to see what judgement humanity will impose on those who were actively engaged in the campaign to conceal the truth about the inevitable consequences of treating our Planet like an inexhaustible vending machine.

Like a playground.

Like that dark, dead end on that obscure county road where we all go to dump our old, tattered mattresses.

That reckoning is coming.

“Bulldog Ben” Basile

© 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

Sunday, August 16, 2020

The pushback from 45's meddling with the Post Office

Hair Hitler is working his plan to slowly throttle the U.S. Postal Service in order to keep millions of votes from being counted.

It's not that it wasn't a good plan--as trump's seventh grade-level plans go--but it's backfiring.

Who'da thunk it?

Although what the Poser Prez is doing here is a very serious matter, it's also true that it's a bit comical that he didn't foresee--or simply blew off--those unintended consequences which inevitably follow the unleashing of one of his schemes.

The blow-back is coming from lots of ordinary Americans, those of us who knew from the jump what a hateful and incompetent con artist he is and even from some of his supporters.

Major newspapers are sounding the alarm. The concern from ordinary Americans who depend on the Post Office is growing, and trump--as always--has no option but to carry on until the gambit-of-the-day becomes completely untenable.

It's hard to see where we're going to go next on this one.

Meanwhile, protesters camped out in front of Postmater General Louis DeJoy's DC apartment to give him hell for being trump's point man on this cynical scheme.

He'll continue to catch hell for this. And he'll keep right on until he's stopped.

Watch this space.

"Bulldog Ben" Basile

(c) 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

Thursday, August 13, 2020

Sabotaging the USPS is a part of the plan

Back on August 2nd, I wrote about trump's infamous tweet where he suggested that the 2020 Election might have to be postponed until it was safe to hold one.

Millions of Americans saw that for what it was, a transparent attempt to set the stage for his deliberate and well-planned op to steal the 2020 Presidential Election and stay in office.

And now it's obvious that a part of that plan is to cripple the U.S. Postal Service.

This will be an issue right up until the Election is over and all the votes are counted.

People who love democracy and are not going to sit idly by while Adolph Twitler strangles Lady Liberty and our cherished way of life can see exactly where this is leading.

And now it's quite clear that hamstringing the Post Office is an integral part of the plan.

The plan is as ingenious as Donald trump is evil.

We will make sure it doesn't succeed.

"Bulldog Ben" Basile

© 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

Thursday, August 6, 2020

The MLB file: they've juiced the ball again

If you follow sports, you most likely know that the baseball season did get underway. That was on July 23rd, so about two weeks ago.

Because of COVID-19, it's an abbreviated season. It will be 60 games for each team and will wrap up on September 27th.

There have been some changes in the game. Some are not too big a deal and don't raise any alarms for me.

Let the record show that I think it's a good thing now that both leagues have the DH. I'm not a purist and I think this good for the game.

And yes, I like the expanded play off format. There have been way too many times that a team has a bang-up year but just missed their division championship and couldn't quite grab one of the two wild card slots, either. Very glad to see that eight teams from each league will keep playing after the end of the regular season now.

Here's what's gotten under my skin: the ball has most definitely been juiced this year. Again.

I just watched the DBacks beat up on the Astros. The final was 14-7 and there were... wait for it...

There were nine (9) home runs hit!

Even though--as I said a moment ago--I'm not a purist, this juiced ball thing is out-of-control.

And don't you dare say it's all because of the launch angle thing. Or that hitters are getting better at their craft and so on. I'm not buyin' it.

I still love the game and am watching a ton of baseball in this surreal, virus-shortened year. Just as I always do.

But wrapping that ball even tighter for this year is a bad thing for the sport. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad the days of a thousand 3-1 games each season are gone. I truly am.

But every team breaking all-time season home run records every year? Games with 9 freaking home runs?

That's a bridge too far.

Bulldog Ben

© 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

They couldn't care less

As just about everyone knows, there are very serious problems with the Unemployment Insurance system in Florida. Much has been written about this in the last five months or so. 

Here's what's begging to be said while we go through all of this: the problems and snafus we're dealing with right now serve as a perfect example of why, if you're supporting Republicans, you're harming yourself.

I've told you before that former Gov Rick Scott and his crew deliberately designed the Florida State Unemployment System to frustrate unemployed Floridians so that the fewest possible number of applicants could successfully complete their applications and thereby draw benefits. 

Now our current Governor, Ron DeSantis, has let the cat out of the bag. He said the quiet part out loud yesterday and admitted in an interview with Miami's CBS Affiliate that that's how the system was designed to work. (This is actually the second time DeSantis has acknowledged this.)

This is what happens when you vote for Republicans. They will look out for their well-heeled friends. They'll kiss up to major corporations, giving them every incentive and tax break you can think of.

They'll look out of everyone but you. Everyone but Floridians who work for a paycheck.

They could not care less about ordinary Floridians. If you keep voting for Republicans, you're enabling this strategy. Big business and the politicians' wealthy cronies will keep getting all the consideration, all the breaks, all the access.

And working people like you and I will get the crumbs. An ever-increasing share of the tax burden, systems that are designed to keep us from ever receiving any benefit that comes from those taxes we pay and the certain knowledge that our elected officials are completely indifferent to our financial and personal well-being.

Here's the kicker: The system is also designed to give access to the corporations and rich friends and to shut you out.

The donors, the shakers-and-movers, can easily arrange a lunch or an office sit-down with their bought-and-paid for elected officials--or senior staff, at the very least--by just making a call or two. 

And there's always those fabulous $10,000 a plate fundraisers where you can hob-nob with your Congressperson.

But if you or I want to get the ear of our elected reps, a polite-sounding, generic word-processed email from a junior staffer or intern is what we'll get.

And when we band together to advocate for the common good--in an org like Common Cause, for instance--the end result will usually be the same.

A few ordinary citizens and taxpayers like you or I will get our five minutes at a town hall or meeting of the county commission to beg our elected officials to take into account the needs of ordinary people, to stop giving all the priority and all the consideration to those who need it the least and to occasionally think about the other 98% of us, but it will change nothing.

We'll get a polite nod or two from the commissioner in whose district we may live but we'll still be shut out. The system was designed to safeguard the interests of corporations and the donor class, keeping taxes and state or municipal services as low as possible, while dishing out just enough handshakes and polite smiles to keep rank-and-file taxpayers and citizens from seeing how thoroughly we've been taken for granted and pushed to the margins.

That's how the game is played. If working people keep on pretending this is not so, and keep sending Republicans to rep us in Tallahassee and Washington, it will never change.

"Bulldog Ben" Basile 

© 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

Sunday, August 2, 2020

No, we're not going back

In an on-line forum earlier today, one of my friends said that she had really gotten used to having a lot of things delivered since lock downs began. She went on to say that she was really hoping that delivery will still be offered by many businesses once we can have something approaching "normal" life again.

I think that there's a good chance that we'll still see plenty of merchants offering delivery post-pandemic. Many prognosticators and folks in media have said that a lot of the changes that have been and are happening won't be undone. I think they're right.

Brick-and-mortar stores were already struggling before COVID-19 and many have--or soon will--go belly up. So one of those predicted changes is that most of them will not be able to come back at all.

Amazon was huge before the pandemic, has gotten much bigger and they're saying that trend will keep on going no matter what. Not that it's only amazon; the trend is helping on-line merchants across the board.

Not too sure if I'm typical here but it's truly insane how much stuff I've ordered from Amazon in the last four months!

Having lots of food, merchandise and what-not dropped right on your doorstep is pretty cool. I'm thinking that delivery services will still be offered by many if not most businesses even after we get the pandemic under control.

"Bulldog Ben" Basile

© 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile

45 talking about postponing the election

Yeah, Shitler suggested that it would be a good thing if the upcoming election was postponed. Until it was safe to hold an election, of course.

Ain't irony ironic?

Did he mean it? Was it a distraction? What are we to make of this?

And on and on it goes.

It's simple, really. Trump knows he has zero say over whether the election is held on November 3rd or not.

He knows he has no chance of winning.

He's just trying to create more chaos. Trying to set us all up for his last-grasp gambit to steal the election and thereby keep the power-stick from being torn out of his teenie little hands.

Clearly seeing what he's up to is not that hard.

It will be harder to keep him from getting away with it.

Shitler, we see you.

"Bulldog Ben" Basile

© 2020 Ben Lawrence Basile