This will always remain one of the best jokes of democracy — that it gave its deadly enemies the means by which it was destroyed.Hitler propaganda boss Joseph Goebbels.
Herr Goebbels would recognize Trump’s Start the Steal, Part Deux. As I mentioned last week, Barbwire predixions often come true, too often to my regret.
On Feb. 16, 2016, with 17 candidates in the Republican presidential primary, I moved a piece entitled “History foreshadows a GOP November win.” Lots of my friends didn’t like my projection based on well-founded historical research by minds far greater than mine.
Later, I published this quote from an LA Times cartoon by David Horsey: “As democracy is perfected, the office of the president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be occupied by a downright fool and complete moron.” — H.L. Mencken, Baltimore Evening Sun, 7-26-1920.
Republican Warren G. Harding won that November, creating the most corrupt presidency until that of Czar Donaldov. Had he not died of a heart attack, Harding would have become the first president impeached, convicted and removed due to the infamous Teapot Dome oilfield leasing scandal.
On the good side, back in February 2006, I also noted that the cycles of history forecast a Democratic win in 2020. Which also came to pass for all Americans, including the burgeoning Trump Evangelical Church of God in Donald.
This week, a longtime Barbwire reader forwarded this: “If we are to have another contest in the near future of our national existence,” that war would not be waged between regional factions, but “between patriotism and intelligence on one side, and superstition, ambition and ignorance on the other.” (Snopes.com)
That purportedly came from our 18th President (1869-1877), Hiram Ulysses (aka Ulysses Simpson aka US) Grant. Is it correct?
Jawohl. Snopes.com fact checkers verified it from a Grant speech at Des Moines, Iowa, on Sept. 29, 1875. (Link with this column’s expanded web edition at NevadaLabor.com/)
SIDNEY POITIER RISKED HIS LIFE FOR CIVIL RIGHTS. On August 4, 2020, Jerry Mitchell of the Center for Investigative Reporting wrote “On this day in 1964, the same day the FBI found the bodies of civil rights workers James Chaney, Andy Goodman and Mickey Schwerner, singer Harry Belafonte heard that the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee needed at least $50,000 to survive. His friend and fellow activist Sidney Poitier delivered $70,000 raised in the Mississippi Delta. When they landed at the Greenwood airport after dark, a pickup filled with white men pursued and rammed them. The two performers made it to their destination, delivering the money to keep Freedom Summer going.
“ ‘We knew if we never did another thing together,’ Belafonte recalled, ‘this was to be forever cherished.’ “
The Dallas Morning News picked up the Poitier/Belafonte story so it appears credible and has been lighting up anti-social media. Speaking of which…
TAKE MY WIFE, PLEASE! Meta (as in “I never META white person I didn’t like”), fka Facebook, is rife with stories that Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas’ wife, Ginni, posted a Tweet endorsing the treasonous Jan. 6, 2021 attempt to crown Trump king.
“God bless each of you!” she effused. Snopes.com verified the story. See NevadaLabor.com/
I regret that I must remind readers that Justice Thomas is black, his wife is white.
Given his record and her support of the murderous MAGA rioters, I am on firm ground when I say they are a match made in heaven: both white supremacists.
(Columniator’s note: “meta” in Hebrew means “death.”)
MORE UNENLIGHTENED MAGAMANIACS. In last week’s Republican gubernatorial candidate debate, one guy actually said that government should task law enforcement to tax homeless panhandlers.
Others typified Doonesbury cartoonist Garry Trudeau’s definition of the oxymoronic GOP PR spin “compassionate conservatism.”
“Compassionate” means “we care,” where “conservatism” means “you’re on your own.”
Wacko former Democrat John Lee actually said something borderline sensible. The North Las Vegas Mayor trashed homeless people, then advocated for increased mental health care. By doing so, he agreed with the GOP’s boogeyman, Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak, who recently lamented how mental health care in Nevada has been underfunded “for decades.”
As someone who’s been in that fight since the 1970s, both are correct.
But just words.
CRACKERJACK: GEORGIA 33, ‘BAMA 18. A Blue State collegiate football champion at last.
GHOST OF GUINIERE. Last week came news of the death at 71 of Harvard law professor Lani Guiniere. Bill and Hillary threw her under the boss when GOP moonhowlers trashed her as a “quota queen” when Friendly President Clinton nominated her to become chief deputy attorney general for civil rights in 1993.
She had proposed ideas to make voting more fair, like open primaries and rankedchoice voting. The latter idea just won a round in Carson District Court, opposed by (drum roll, please…) Democratic Party interests.
Can’t blame them too much. Our last two legislatures have been historic in American history: Majority female. We’re on a good trajectory despite ourselves.
The state teachers’ union is also in court opposing its own initiative petitions to raise mining and major casino taxes. (They called the petitions legislative bargaining chips.)
To rewrite a cliché, if Lani Guiniere and State Sen. Joe Neal, D-N. Las Vegas, were alive, they’d be turning over in their graves.
THANKS FOR THE HELP. The GoFundMe campaign to help local bus operator Michael Lansborough and his family has gone from $1,400 to $2,225 since last week’s paper. The announced goal is $4,000 but that’s quite modest.
My Sparks union brother faces mega-major surgery in a couple of weeks.
He is sole support of his wife and son, Logan, who has no lower legs due to a genetic flaw. The stalwart 10 year-old was ubiquitous in his wheelchair supporting his father on Teamsters Union picket lines during last summer’s Hot August Strike. (Photos on the front page of NevadaLabor.com/)
Here is the link Be generous. If you would like to help by check, make it payable to Michael Lansborough and send to his attention at Teamsters Local 533, 1190 Selmi Drive, Suite 100, Reno NV 89512.
Join me in donating. Please.
¡Sí se puede!
Take care of each other and be careful out there.
Be well. Raise hell. / Esté bien. Haga infierno.
Andrew Quarantino Barbano is a 53-year Nevadan and editor of NevadaLabor.com, SenJoeNeal. org and MississippiWestNV.org/ Barbwire by Barbano has originated in the Tribune since 1988. E-mail