Happy New Year!

I know there are so many reasons not to anticipate 2018, many of them associated with Donald Trump. But there are many, many more reasons to celebrate and look forward to a better year, among them, of course, the chance to elect people to office who aren’t unprincipled backers of Donald Trump.

So, instead of griping let’s rejoice as we look ahead and these promising moments:

Connecticut was declared the 17th happiest state in America in 2017, so 2018 leaves us golden opportunities to climb over Vermont (13th) and New Hampshire (10th) to become the cheeriest of New England.

Connecticut enjoyed a white Christmas in 2017, and from the looks of the weather so far that will persist long past the Fourth of July and into Christmas of 2018. Jingle bells….

You can now purchase Hartford Whalers license plates. Let’s skip over why anyone wants a tag celebrating a long defunct hockey team.

Hartford’s Bradley International Airport has begun earning its title, now offering cheap seasonal flights to a variety of European destinations. And it’s a whole lot easier to fly out of Bradley than Boston’s Logan Airport.

Massachusetts will begin selling legal recreational marijuana in 2018. Oh well, at least it’s not a long trip to Mass.

It’s only four months until some shoreline lobster houses open for the year….

Hail Those Courageous Women!

Roy S. Moore is dead. Well, not literally, possibly not even politically, though we can hope. But at least for the 2017 US Senate election in Alabama, the semi-literate accused child molester is dead and gone. We all feel relief, and let us all join in wishing that Moore’s accusers may find some measure of joy n his defeat. They certainly deserve our thanks for their bravery in speaking out about the things Moore did to them; their courage led to his humiliation at the hands of the sane Alabama voters.

And there must be a special place in hell reserved for those Alabamians and others who verbally crucified those brave women during the campaign. Those women suffered calumny after calumny and stood their ground against the “Moorons.” And shame on the Alabamians who denied the women and voted in behalf of one of the least qualified humans ever to enter a campaign for the United States Senate. What a disgrace Moore would have been.

And speaking of disgrace, there is President Trump. May we hope that his turn is coming sooner rather than later. After all, it is Trump who has 16 women (is that count still rising?) who allege they have endured his sexual groping and abuse. And really, does anyone doubt that given Trump’s words, attitudes and behaviors?

The White House spokesmen say that the issue of Trump’s groping women was settled with his election last year. Well, no it wasn’t, not by any means. First, Trump wasn’t elected by a majority of American voters; Hillary Clinton was, remember? And second, the election was not a referendum endorsing Trump’s grotesque sexual misbehavior. It turned out to be more of a referendum on how many voters disliked Clinton in a campaign filled with mistakes.

Trump’s continuing public debasement of women — most recently his tweet suggesting a New York senator “would do anything” for votes — is disgusting. It points to the honesty of those women who have spoken aloud of his groping of them in years past. Trump has even lied about his voice when he spoke of “grabbing the pussy” of women — right after he acknowledged it was his voice.

He is a proven liar (124 times already this year!). Nothing he says can be believed, but not merely because he has no relationship to truth and honesty but also because he has failed to demonstrate he is capable of understanding and upholding any of the myriad roles of the President of the United States.

We know that. Today we also know that there is hope. We know that the words of courageous women who have been wronged can be heard and recognized. And heeded. We thank all of them. May their honesty somehow lead us to the dismantling of the Trump administration and a vindication for decent people the world over.

Roy S. Moore Redux – Sadly

It is disgraceful by anyone’s measure.

Now President Donald Trump and the Republican National Committee have decided to endorse Roy S. Moore for senator from Alabama. That’s right. They have actually endorsed this bumpkin degenerate in spite of his his public behavior as an alleged sexual abuser of young girls.

And yes, of course the semi-literate and legally chastised Moore is disgusting. But To receive the okay from President Trump and supposedly adult members of the RNC is terrible. Is there no one in the GOP with any sense of decency?

Well, perhaps not. After all, our President has been accused by 16 women of sexual abuse. He’s fine with it, denying any of it happened when everyone knows it did. And by everyone I mean almost everyone in the Republican party. No one raises their voices to accuse Trump. Instead they urge Democrats to get rid of their party’s sexual abusers. But no word about their own congressional members and most definitely nothing about the President of the United States. A Republican, you remember.

That’s disgusting. Voters in Alabama have a choice between an accused serial sexual abuser of young women and a Democrat. So many of them will vote for the dim-bulb sexual abuser. Alabamians may deserve that they get. But the rest of America doesn’t, and if Moore winds up getting to Congress we hope that everyone — that means Republicans, too — will do everything possible to get rid of this disgraceful, vile, unapologetic and abhorrent person.

The Short (we hope) Saga of Roy S. Moore

Roy S. Moore is a particularly officious member of the human race. And his issues are not about party — though he is a spanking white Republican — but rather about being a respectful, compassionate and worthy member of the clan. And that’s “clan” with a “c” and not with a “k” although Roy S. Moore knows bit about that, too.

Moore is the disgraced Alabama Supreme Court Justice who is running for the Republican Senate seat in his home state. His record is appalling: he has twice been removed from the Supreme Court, once because he refused to remove a plaque of the Ten commandments from the court, and then again for his refusal to accept the law allowing gay marriage. mind you he defied the law of the land although he was a judge.

Worse – though it seems almost impossible to top that — is his apparent involvement in sexual misconduct with underage girls. There are five young women who have come forth already, and more may follow. Roy S. Moore denies any involvement and says it’s all a witch hunt. Hardly anyone outside the lowest levels of education in Alabama believes that. His supporters — a scurvy lot at best — are actually raising money for the campaign by trying to defame Roy S. Moore’s accusers. Disgusting.

Most Republicans outside Alabama are denouncing Roy S. Moore and threatening to expel him from the Senate should he win the Dec. 12 election. Meanwhile Roy S. Moore waves his guns around in public — how else can you prove you’re a die-hard supporter of the Second Amendment? — and insists he’s the real victim. Really. He’s the victim?

No. Roy S. Moore has a proven track record as a vile human being who seems capable of the basest behaviors, most of which run contrary to the genuine conservative values he falsely allies himself to. May we hope Alabamians will rise up and refute this man since it appears he has not the common sense, grace or decency to withdraw on his own. Roy S. Moore is not a martyr; he’s a blight.

Truth-telling Absentia

Donald Trump lies about almost everything and accepts responsibility for almost nothing. What an ungodly horrible president.

His behavior regarding killed American soldiers is not merely clumsy but disgracefully. Of course we know that in spite of his words — sad — he has little or no respect for American soldiers. He chickened out of military service himself, disparaged the Gold Star parents of a dead soldier and most recently has mistreated the survivors of soldiers killed in action.

In one documented instance earlier this year, he called the father of a slain soldier and promised to send him $25,000. He never did. And let’s repeat that: he never did, at least until he was called on it by a newspaper. One of his flunkies then said “a check has been mailed.” Just this week Trump lied about not having been in touch with other survivors, and then when he called one of them i turns out he insulted her and was simply thoughtless in his words.

So bad.

How do you explain this kind of behavior? (And we’ve not mentioned his false accusation that other presidents have never written or called surviving families?) How does anyone maintain even a shred of respect for this person?

Sad But True

Down what excrement-filled path is Donald Trump leading America?

It might be one that takes us directly into war with North Korea. Or Iran. Trump’s incompetence, his juvenile mindset and his mental instability are threatening our nation. And that’s not just idle imagining. His crude, weak words about Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Armed Services Chairman Sen. Bob Corker worry our allies and embolden the country’s enemies. Respect for the U.S. is is diminishing with both.

The fact that the Secretary of State called the President a “moron” is so far beyond any modern precedent. Trump’s belittling of Corker, a much-admired Republican who is knowledgeable in foreign affairs, suggests that Tillerson’s label is, all-too accurate. Sad.

Nearly every day brings new reminders of Trump’s growing detachment from the presidency. Instead of confronting issues like North Korea, Iran, destruction in Puerto Rico, he focuses on pro football players, an ESPN analyst and his wife’s statements. There is nothing too small and insignificant and meaningless for Trump to spend huge — very huge — chunks of his time on them. Sad. Very sad.

Trump is by any measure a chump. Successful businessman? His tax returns might confirm that — when pigs fly. His has managed to bankrupt gambling casinos (how can anyone be that financially stupid?). His golf clubs in Scotland are losing millions of dollars. Respect for Trump among his business colleagues disappeared a couple of decades ago.

Decent human being? Not with his comments of support for neo-Nazis, his apparent comfort with white supremacists, his words of disdain for Hispanics and other minorities and his disgusting words about assaulting women.

His leadership? Non-existent. He has not been able to get any of his signature legislative proposals though a Congress dominate by his own party. That’s largely be cause he isn’t interested in doing any real work to get his measures passed, preferring to use harsh, inaccurate words to criticize opponents and supporters. His is a record of almost total failure of achievement.

So, what can we say of Trump? How about calling it as he is: a lying, bullying, abusive, weak, inept, crass, narrow-minded, thoughtless, man-child who is manifestly unfit for this or any other public office. His is and remains a disgrace. Sad but true.

Screw the Consumers

Could there possibly be a more greedy, profit-focused, customer un-centric industry than the airlines?

As it turns out, yes indeed there is. Welcome to our exceedingly unfriendly credit collection agencies Equifax, Experian and TransUnion. Let’s focus on Equifax because it’s the one in the news these days after allowing a credit hack that has affected 143.5 million Americans. Equifax “allowed” that hack because it took grossly inadequate security measures to protect the confidential data of its victims. The company calls them customers, but they are victims.

The Equinox CEO has resigned as a result of the hack. Bully. The company and its two competing agencies ought to be the subject of rigorous new laws to limit their operations and the damages they can and are causing to so many millions of innocents. Even now as Equinox is attempting to allow victims to freeze or lock for free their stolen accounts, Experian and TransUnion are charging and want to increase their fees for those actions. That’s reprehensible. Onerous. It deserves more than a Congressional reprimand.

Customers ought to be able to alter their records at these companies at any time with out being charged for it. After all, these agencies make their profits from the organizations who purchase the collected information they have acquired. The money they make from customers — let’s just stick to labeling them victims — is just plain greed. Congress, it’s time to stop this. It’s disgusting corporate behavior that is anti-consumerism at its worst. Let’s fix the issue at hand and then seek legitimate and much-needed reform to prevent recurrences.

Small Hands, Small Mind?

Donald Trump’s latest target for his juvenile animosity and bullying is something larger than the individual men and women he has spoken against. This time he’s expressing his unhappiness with the NFL’s concussion protocols, suggesting that the league is turning sissy by attempting to limit the most obvious head damage-inducing plays. And he wants NFL owners to fire players who don’t stand for the National Anthem.

This is the President of the United States. A man who has so much time on his tiny hands.

This from a man of severely limited ethics and even more limited intelligence, a buffoonish loser. And maybe that explains it.

Years ago, Trump filed legal actions against the NFL, which he lost. And this is a man-boy who can’t stand losing anything though throughout his career he has lost much more than he’s ever won (think bankrupting gambling casinos, an achievement to awesomely inept it staggers the imagination).

Trump is also confronting something more serious than football players. He Asian antagonist is Kim Jong Un, a dangerous, possibly crazy, North Korean leader who at the moment seems to be the saner of the two men. Trump calls Kim “rocket man.” Kim refers to Trump as a “dotard.” Yes that’s utterly childish, but then again, so is Kim’s outburst. These are the leaders of two nations with catastrophe-causing weaponry, and they sound like first-graders. It would be amusing it it didn’t carry such potentially tragic implications.

So how to deal with Kim? Ignore or humiliate him publicly. Look instead to the Republican health care proposal, a woebegone bill that no one believes is a good bill. Trump wants it passed just so he can claim he’s won something after losing most everything he’s proposed (think immigration the wall, etc.) mever since he got into office.

Which brings us to this: Trump says he’s disinviting the NBA champion Golden State Warriors from a possible White House visit. Trump says because the players indicate a lack of enthusiasm for meeting the President, he is “withdrawing the invitation.” The catch here? The White House has never extended an invitation to be accepted or rejected.

Trump is a foolish, small-minded, pitifully incompetent person. A disgrace. America is much the worse for his administration.

The Nashville Statement

Bigotry resides not merely in the hearts and minds of neo-Nazis and white supremacists and their endorsers but also apparently inside a large clump of evangelical so-called Christians.

Earlier in the week a group of some 150 white self-described conservative people signed an agreement known as the Nashville Statement which is nothing more than a blatant commitment to intolerance to lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender people. The statement suggests that anyone who might be an L.B.G.T. person is immoral, that only heterosexuality is a permissible way of life and anyone else is “disordered.”

The signers include some well-known evangelicals, wackos, right-wing bigots, editors at conservative publications and a host of hangers-on. Many of them — all? — are supporters of Donald Trump, and therein lies the suspicion that this statement is not so much a statement of Christian principles but one with a political focus.

Consider: these signees condemn anyone not heterosexual as immoral. Yet they blindly ignore Donald Trump’s behavior. Cheating. (He committed adultery at least twice.) Lying. (Every time his mouth opens.) And what of his comments about grabbing women. Surely they are at least immoral and grossly sexist. And his demeaning of those of other races and nationalities? Where’s the Christian response to that? Where’s the outrage? Where’s the “Statement.”?

And where in the name of Christianity to we find that Christ rejects anyone because of sexuality? We are all sinners. Christ even accepts Donald Trump, though if would be nice if those alleged “Christian” signees noticed that Trump said a while back that he has never asked God for forgiveness. And what in Trump’s life bears the least witness to a moral, Christian sensibility in either his personal or professional life? Ever?

The Nashville Statement smells. It deserves the denunciation that most people are giving it. It is wrong, wrong-headed, hurtful and positively an anti-Christian document that should shame its signees. We are all better than that, or should be.


Another rat left the festering sewer that is Donald Trump’s White House today. This time is was Steve Bannon whose departure will not be bemoaned, mostly because it still leaves the chief architect of division and disgust in office.

And how long will Trump’s uncontrolled incompetence, stupidity, cowardice and mental impairment continue to roil America? The answer, sadly, seems to be until a few people in the Republican Party decide to put their country before their party. And that prospect seems dim indeed. Republicans are choosing to condemn Trump’s words and activities without naming him, but they clearly have no intention of taking the kinds of actions that are required to push Trump out of office.

In other words, there are no profiles in courage to be seen anywhere in today’s GOP. The Republicans will do anything to hang on to their offices, and they are frightened that acting on Trump will cost them political office. It might. Of course, it would be the right thing to do for America, but as we say, courage is in short supply these days, even as the White House becomes more and more mired in scandal and immorality.