Capital and lower-case…

Internet pundits have been quick to point out that what we saw yesterday wasn’t a coup because it didn’t involve the military. Pedantry aside, what we witnessed was a violent insurrection carried out at the behest of the President of the United States in order to undermine Constitution, government, and the lawful, peaceful transition of power from one administration to the next. The fact that this president still occupies the Oval Office more than 24 hours since attempting to overthrow the government is a mark of moral cowardice on every Executive Branch official who has the power to do something about it and has failed to act decisively. At a minimum, each and every cabinet secretary should have, by now, called on the president to resign to his everlasting disgrace.

I have even less use for these right wing insurrectionists than I did for the lefties who burned and rioted their way through the summer. I hold them to a higher standard because when and where I come from, “conservative” implies rational, thoughtful decision-making of the head rather than zooming off in whatever direction the heart demands. Republicans very recently claimed to be the party that supported the police – the party of law and order. It’s hard to give credit for “backing the blue” when you’re in the streets and in the halls of Congress swinging on them.

I’m a Republican (capital “R”) and a republican (lower-case “r”). I believe in the virtue of small government and lower taxes, of free people and free markets. I am never going to get next to this strain of contemporary MAGA-ism that rejects science (because they don’t understand it) or rejects election results (because they don’t like who won). I’m never going to get next to the idea that we should be embarrassed by being in some way intellectual. I’m never going to get behind the idea of twisting the Constitution with wild contortionistic abandon, throwing over 232 years of precedent, to suit the aims of a single man. I’m never going to understand a group of people who want to buy whole cloth into whatever blatant lies and wild-ass conspiracy theory the internet spits out, because believing the patently unbelievable is more comforting than dealing with hard realities of the actual world.

More importantly, I will never stand with those who seek to subvert the Constitution by force or otherwise. These insurrectionists, with the President of the United States as their leader, and with the support of sitting senators and members of the House of Representatives, betrayed of not just our history and our laws, but also the spirit of America. Those who participated in, agitated for, support, condone, or in any way provide aid and comfort to them are treasonous bastards who deserve all the scorn and derision we can heap upon them and to should prosecuted to the fullest possible extent of the law.

What Annoys Jeff this Week?

1. Air conditioning. If reports out of central Maryland are to be believed, we are now living in the midst of the worst rash of human rights violations in the history of the state. I wish I’d have known back in the 80s and 90s that air conditioning in schools was a civil right. It turns out mine were violated regularly between about 1989 and 1996 when I and my classmates were forced to endure education without the benefit of air conditioning with only the comforting whir of dozens of box fans stirring the broiling air inside our classrooms. Since these long-dormant childhood injuries have now been pulled to the surface by an insensitive media establishment, I’m left wondering which state office we need to file with to receive our settlement for emotional trauma and discomfort?

2. Cowardice. Courage isn’t hiding behind a brick wall of anonymity saying mean things for fun and profit while trying to make sure you don’t lose your job. If you’re a member of the administration, outraged by it’s behavior and feel that you have no recourse but to speak out against it, the only legitimate option available to you is to resign your position. Then you are free to speak out and avail yourself of every other opportunity afforded to you. When I have an opinion, unpopular or not, I post it here and make sure my name is one it. To make your stand anonymously from a position of safety protected from public scrutiny isn’t an act of bravery, but a self-serving act of personal cowardice.

3. Thursday dinner. I loath and dispise needing to cook a full meal when I get home from work. Mostly I solve that problem by over-making Sunday dinner and crock-potting something on Monday. Juicy leftover goodness is the dispensed for lunch and dinner for the next three days. By Thursday, though, the options box starts looking a little bare… and by a little bare, I mean selecting between frozen burritos, Spaghettio’s, or a tasty bowl of Corn Flakes. Sure, I could order up something for delivery, but that involves someone coming to the house, so it’s a less desirable option. I could, of course, give in, and prepare an actual meal. That option, too, feels unlikely. If it’s Thursday and you’re reading this, chances are Corn Flakes has ended up being what’s for dinner.

On the beauty of being offensive…

If the media can be believed, we live in a country that could currently be best described as offended that we’re offended by the offensive offending that may or may not offend you, me, or the neighbor and if any one of those people are not offended, we’re unilaterally offended by their lack of offense.

It’s enough to make a poor blogger’s head hurt. It’s probably only a matter of time before the Court is asked to find that we Americans have a heretofore undiscovered and absolute right to not face any issue at any time that may hurt our chickenshit little feelings. That way we can prevent anyone from saying anything.

I can only hope that it doesn’t come to that.

I want to be offended by people. I want them to express ideas that are different than my own. I want them to challenge me – because that means I have to better understand my own positions and arguments. It means I have to work just that little bit harder to know my own mind. It means I don’t get a free pass when my poor little feelings aren’t validated.

While we’re at it, could we maybe “feel” a little less and “think” a little more – as in “I think this is important and here’s why” instead of “I feel that we should eat granola instead of eggs because chickens are people too.” All I’m asking for is a little intellectual rigor instead of running the country like some kind of damned new age encounter group.

As for me, I’ll continue to speak my mind. If anything I say offends you, good. That means I’m doing my part.

No apologies…

The vile corpse of Osama bin Laden has barely settled to the bottom of the sea and I’m already hearing and reading snippets from those who would ask us to be filled with regret at the loss of “even one human life.” Maybe you are more enlightened than I am, because I cheered when I heard the news that brave Americans had gone deep into harms way to end his vile and retched existence on this earth. Bin Laden was a bad man who did bad things and the world is far better for his departure from it. The fact that he used a woman as a last ditch attempt to shield his own miserable hide proves only that he died as he lived – a coward.

Remember one thing if his death unnerves your delicate sensibilities – He chose this path, not us. I’m glad he’s dead and I hope 100 more of his like join him at the first available opportunity. Does this make me a bad person? I doubt it. It makes me a sane one whose only regret is I’ll probably never run into one of the SEALs who masterfully carried out this assault to personally thank him for his service.

As much as some would like to, we can’t wish away all the bad things in the world. Evil can’t be rolled back by doling out more hugs and passing out gold stars. It’s only stopped and put on the run because of the rough men who stand ready to do violence on our behalf. If there’s a hell, I’m sure bin Laden is in it. I hope tonight’s menu features the finest pork barbeque in all the land.