01 August 2022

Update no.1072

Update from the Sunland

No.1072

25.7.22 – 31.7.22

Blog version:  http://heartlandupdate.blogspot.com/

 

To all,

 

On Thursday afternoon, while the real folks were at work, Jeanne and I took advantage of Arizona law and the associated provisions of Maricopa County to cast our votes in the state primary election. In Arizona primary elections, we can choose one of three different ballots—Democrat, Independent, or Republican. Since the primary is essentially a political party candidate selection process, and as a consequence, you become a de facto declaration for that party; as such, I chose independent (non-aligned) ballot, which only mayoral and council candidates for our town. We encountered no lines. In fact, the election workers and party observers were the only occupants of the room in the town community center. The check-in and validation process was computer based. I scanned the bar code on the back of my driver’s license, checked my name and resident address, and signed an electronic signature block. The computer did not like my signature, rejected me, and forced two election workers to manually validate my identity. Satisfied that I was who I said I was, they spot printed an independent ballot for me. There were no stored or stock ballots to be misplaced, stolen, diverted, fraudulently completed, or any of the other fact-less accusations the BIC and his supporters like to falsely claim as part of the BIG LIE—one validated qualified voter and one ballot. The election worker gave me the ballot and an envelope. She sent me to a quasi-private, stand up, voting table with instructions to complete my ballot as I chose, insert the ballot in the envelope, and sign the exterior of the envelope. Another election worker activated the adhesive, asked me to seal the envelope, and drop the sealed/signed ballot in a large locked box. There were no voting machines thanks to the Arizona State Senate and specifically the Senate Republican Caucus, who unilaterally engaged a novice firm, Cyber Ninjas [1028], to perform a detailed ballot-by-ballot forensic audit of Maricopa County 2020 election results [982]. {I must note at this juncture that not only did they not find any fraud of any kind, or malfeasance of any sort, of even remotely sufficient size to affect the outcome of the election, they actually increased the margin of President Biden over the other guy. But, did that stop them spewing the BIG LIE—NO! That crowd continues pressing the BIG LIE to this very day.} What that audit did accomplish was breaking the chain of custody of the county’s voting machines, so they could not be used in any future elections. Of course, the fBICP expletive did not allocate one dime of funding to replace the Maricopa County voting machines, thus the necessity to use conventional paper ballots. My manual paper ballot was not so bad in the primary, but for the general election, a paper ballot will take longer to complete and check before submittal.

As I voted this week, I was reminded that all of this wreckage, wastage, destruction, confusion, doubt, and the insurrection itself stems directly and solely from the BIG LIE that [the person who shall no longer be named] began fomenting long before the election when his pollsters began to tell him he was behind Joe Biden. I vacillate between which element is worse: the BIG LIE that started and sustained this debacle, or the fBICP minions who perpetuate this nonsense despite having not even a tiny shred of factual evidence. We, the People, will be paying the dreadful price for this disaster for a very long time—another insult handed down to our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and future generations all, and I do mean ALL, because of one immoral, demented man. What a legacy of infamy!

 

Later Thursday afternoon, Jeanne and I signed a contract statement of work for our long awaited kitchen remodel project. We had agreed when considering the purchase of our current home that the kitchen did not fit the house and needed a major remodel to feel a part of and complement the rest of the house. Beyond the money, we have approximately three to five months of collecting the long-lead items before work can begin. Once that state is attained, the actual construction is estimated to take six to eight weeks. The long-lead phase is just money, but the construction phase is going to be quite disruptive to our daily routine and perhaps to my writing throughput. TSF10 is with the publisher, and galley proof edits are still ahead. I have begun writing TSF11, which may be delayed by the remodeling project. Time shall tell the tale.

 

A special message for [the person who shall no longer be named] and his blindly loyal minions . . .

Executive privilege does NOT protect criminal conduct. Justice is coming to the instigator of the insurrection [991]. What his fraudulent use of executive privilege will do is delay justice, as he forces the courts to adjudicate the erroneous obstacles.

Do you feel the heat?

 

Once again, the Russians have threatened to withdraw from the International Space Station. Director General Yury Ivanovich Borisov of Roscosmos (the Russian space agency, equivalent to NASA) formally announced they would withdraw from the International Space Station (ISS) by the end of 2024 along with their intention to build their own space station. A day later, Russia clarified the announcement to say they would remain part of the ISS until 2028.

At this point, if the Russians which to cut their nose off to spite their face, I would say let them have at it. I put this in the category of death with dignity. If that is what they wish, then so be it. Let ‘em go.

 

The fBICP and remnants of the former Republican Party are adamantly against abortion not because of any concern for the unborn, despite their protestations. Exhibit number 1: their virtually total disregard for the welfare of living children. No, their obsession is not about the unborn, it is entirely about relegating women to secondary citizenship status. They see women as incubators with one singular purpose—procreation. Just like Judeo-Christian religions used to maintain, and the Catholic Church still does to this day, sexual intercourse is only for procreation within a church sanctioned marriage between one man and one woman. I do not object to the Church’s position on procreation, marriage, abortion, or any of those moral positions. People who believe should adhere to the Church’s admonitions. Where I object is the de facto insertion of those moral choices into the common law of a free country. Women are (or should be) absolutely equal citizens of this once grand republic in every possible manner regardless of the positions of the Catholic Church or any other religious sect.

To be clear, Dobbs [597 U. S. ____] [1068] did not pass judgement on abortion. They simply negated Roe v. Wade[410 U.S. 113 (1973)] [319], throwing the regulation of abortion back to the States. In essence, they declared that a female citizen’s rights are not equal to a male citizen’s rights. Their rights can be rejected, denied, parsed, or regulated in any manner that an individual state may decide. That is NOT freedom. It is NOT “Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.”

 

On Friday, 29.July.2022, the House of Representatives passed, by a very narrow margin, H.R.1808 - Assault Weapons Ban of 2022 {House: 217-213-0-1(4)}. The bill is an attempt to renew and update the last similar federal ban—the Federal Assault Weapons Ban of 1994 [108 Stat. 1997], which was actually Title IX of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 [PL 103-322; 108 Stat. 1796; 13.9.1994]. The bill prohibits weapons listed in the legislation and states:

SEC. 2. DEFINITIONS.

(a) In General.—Section 921(a) of title 18, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following:

“(40) The term ‘semiautomatic assault weapon’ means any of the following, regardless of country of manufacture or caliber of ammunition accepted:

“(A) A semiautomatic rifle that—

“(i) has the capacity to accept a detachable ammunition feeding device; and 

“(ii) has any 1 of the following:

“(I) A pistol grip.

“(II) A forward grip.

“(III) A folding, telescoping, or detachable stock, or a stock that is otherwise foldable or adjustable in a manner that operates to reduce the length, size, or any other dimension, or otherwise enhances the concealability, of the weapon.

“(IV) A grenade launcher.

“(V) A barrel shroud.

“(VI) A threaded barrel.”

At the end of the legislative text, they added Appendix A – Firearms Exempted by the Assault Weapons Ban of 2022. To me, such lists seem to be a chase your tail exercise. The list will have to be updated every time some arms manufacturer produces a new weapon. It was a relief to see my rifles and shotguns on the exempted list. H.R.1808 must still get through the Senate, but the president is certain to sign it into law, if it passes. I still believe prohibition is the wrong action in a free society.

{NOTE for the record: The combination or association of the terms ‘semiautomatic’ and ‘assault weapon’ in the same phrase is technically incorrect, and is an emotional phrase, not a proper technical term, despite what Congress declares. An assault weapon is an automatic weapon already prohibited by the National Firearms Act of 1934 [PL 73-474; 48 Stat. 1236; 26.6.1934]}

H.R.1808, coupled with the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act [PL 117-159; 136 Stat. xxx]; 25.6.2022] [10671069], makes some progress. Nonetheless, I must say, so far, what Congress has done is validating my premonition coming to fruition; they picked the easy and overripe fruit, but not the correct fruit. They have got to do the hard stuff.

In the interesting but barely relevant category, three Republicans and five Democrats defied their party dogma with their votes on H.R.1808. They were:

Republicans voting for the bill:

-- Representative Brian Kevin Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania

-- Representative Christopher Louis ‘Chris’ Jacobs of New York

-- Representative Anthony Gonzalez of Ohio (not voting)

Democrats voting against the bill:

-- Representative Enrique Roberto ‘Henry’ Cuellar of Texas

-- Representative Jared Forrest Golden of Maine

-- Representative Vicente Gonzalez, Jr., of Texas

-- Representative Ronald James ‘Ron’ Kind of Wisconsin

-- Representative Walter Kurt ‘Kurt’ Schrader of Oregon

The rest of the vote was straight down the party dictum.

 

Comments and contributions from Update no.1071:

“Good day mate. Yes thanks again for the update-you’ve nailed it quite nicely.

“Are you taking a break this year? We haven’t been away to the continent since the start of Covid, what’s that some 3 years plus now.

“And now we hear that the French are causing massive problems for Brits to land in France and continue their long awaited holidays on the continent. They are blaming Brexit, we are blaming French reluctance to put adequate manning in their reception desks.

“We often have problems with the French but they didn’t object to our landing in Normandy did they. Oh well, c’est la vie.”

My reply:

No, my friend, no break for the wicked, I’m afraid. We are on the backside of the pandemic, but this year and into next, we are focused on a major kitchen remodel that was agreed upon at purchase and postponed by the pandemic. We are thinking about next year.

Yeah, the French throttling back has made the news in the colonies. Do y’all take the Chunnel or a ferry? If the latter, perhaps a Belgian or Dutch port of entry would work better? Reminds me of the spontaneous rail strikes in Italy back when I was living & working there 20 years ago.

Quite right, my friend. They did not object to the sacrifice on their behalf nearly 80 years ago. Funny how that works . . . not in a good way. I can only say, this too shall pass.

 

Comment to the Blog:

“Let me offset all the eloquence with a small suggestion. Henceforth, a sheep that is insane or violent should be known as a ‘trumper.’ Meanwhile, I celebrate the Bannon conviction.

“Mr. Justice Thomas’s poisonous opinion may be diluted in its force if his wife is compelled to appear before the January 6 Committee.

“The entire world must adapt to climate change, including the UK. Temps in the 30º to 40º range will return in season, even if all possible measures are taken. The phenomenon changes very slowly.

“I agree that the Chump must be publicly and thoroughly disgraced. The key wrong turn leading to this was Ford’s pardon of Nixon.”

My response to the Blog:

I wish I could use your term as offered, but I simply cannot bring myself to recognize his base name. It is my small silly way of relegating him to obscurity and perceived non-existence. He so deserves prison for the rest of his unnatural life.

I join you in celebrating Bannon’s conviction. I just hope the judge exceeds the sentencing guidelines as a consequence for serious contributing factors.

Perhaps, but sure, she deserves to be brought down quite a few pegs. She has a grossly inflated opinion of herself. And, you know how I feel about her husband.

True all the way around. The melting of the Greenland ice sheet, and the Artic and Antarctic are far more troubling.

I absolutely agree. I simply could never forgive Ford for his “move on” action. Very few presidents have been feloniously criminal in office, but Nixon was emphatically one of that small number, and worse, Ford allowed him to walk away free. No other citizen would have gotten away with his criminality. We can only hope we rise to prosecute, convict and imprison the latest example of criminal presidents. We shall see.

 

My very best wishes to all.  Take care of yourselves and each other.

Cheers,

Cap                  :-)