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CSotD: Perspective and accountability

Morten Morland (Times) offers this commentary tying in the coronavirus vaccine with the heroic but somewhat inexplicable return of Victor (ed. No, Alexei) Navalny to Russia, which — in case you hadn’t heard — has touched off massive, nationwide demonstrations in support of him and against Putin’s oligarchy.

“Inexplicable” in the first place because Putin already tried to kill him once with poison, hence the “second dose” crack, and because the Russians’ level of patriotic fervor seems so out of touch with the lukewarm demands for reform that seem to prevail over here.

Russia’s a different place, despite being home to the Caucuses and a whole lot of caucasians. I spent about a week in the company of Soviet timber executives, back in the last days of the USSR and back in the days when reporters were permitted to immerse themselves in their subject matter.

I could write an entire blog entry about the things I learned, but I certainly came away with a greater appreciation for the rich black soil of Mother Russia and how they were able to endure, wait out and overcome both Napoleon and Hitler.

They’re a fun, generous people, but underneath is a stolid, quiet, patient nature that gives credibility to Khruschev’s famous line “We will bury you,” which was not a threat but simply an assurance that, after you are gone, we will still be here.

Vladimir Putin would do well to be nice to Mr. Navalny, because there are many people patiently — and perhaps less so — waiting to tend his grave.

It makes our internal squabbling seem pretty flimsy, while our lack of coverage and commentary demonstrates our talent for looking in the mirror and ignoring the rest of the world, because Morland seems to have this topic largely to himself.

 

Though maybe I’m not keeping my own head on enough of a swivel. Rico Schacherl (Maverick) comments here on vaccination delays in South Africa.

It makes me feel better about our own situation. As an Officially Old Dude, I’m on the schedule but not until Feb 17, which isn’t bad for all the dithering and denial of He Who Shall Not Be Named.

But what really makes me feel better is that yesterday I passed a pair of other Officially Old Dudes in the parking lot at the grocery store.

They were in jeans and cowboy hats standing next to a pickup truck and chatting like we OODs do, but as I passed by, I was surprised to overhear that they were discussing vaccine availability, the relative merits of the Merck vaccine and South Africa’s current distribution issues.

Our working class isn’t as dumb as some of us think it is.

 

Though we’ve sure become complacent about letting political loyalties outweigh our ethics and sense of decency.

John Cole (Cagle) comments here on the cascading credibility of Madison Cawthorn (R-NC), whose life story is crumbling into nonsense.

He wasn’t accepted at Annapolis before the accident that left him paralyzed and his claims of training for the Paralympics have gotten guffaws from the athletes who actually do, and, as Cole suggests, there seems more to come.

Perhaps he is in some kind of competition with Sen. Tom Cotton, who really did serve in Afghanistan and Iraq but not as an Army Ranger. Rather, he attended a Ranger training school, which is demanding but not at all the same thing.

Well, at least neither of them claimed to have heel spurs.

I’m old enough to remember when Republicans went nuts over a Democratic Senator misstating that he’d been in Vietnam when he was a Marine reservist during the war but never went overseas.

I’m even older than that: I remember when Republicans lined up liars to undercut the actual battle record of a Democratic candidate for the presidency.

Hell, I’m even old enough to remember when a US Rep from Oregon was abandoned by the GOP for lying about his military record.

Think times have changed since then? Oregon’s Republican Party has officially declared that the Jan 6 riots were a false flag operation by anti-Trump activists.

They don’t just tolerate lies: They generate them.

 

As Clay Bennett (CTFP) points out, we know who perpetrated that attack and we’re determined to track down, identify and prosecute every one of them who isn’t well-connected and politically powerful.

 

Ruben Bolling (Inner Hive) has some mordant fun with the Q-anonsense of the widening lunatic fringe, and I’d offer a sample and send you off to read the rest, except that, having just groused over the poor job cartoonists do of Seuss parodies, it seems fitting to stand and applaud when someone does such a superb job of duplicating Peanuts’ style, mood and voice.

To sustain the conceit so masterfully through five separate strips is virtually unprecedented.

Which makes this a good time to remind you that we maintain a list of cartoonists with fundraising sites and that you should support the ones whose work you admire.

 

Meanwhile, still on the topics of liars and delusions, Pearls Before Swine (AMS) takes on the delusional lie of Trickle Down, and a recent economic study confirms what anyone with a brain and a heart already knew:

The incomes of the rich grew much faster in countries where tax rates were lowered. Instead of trickling down to the middle class, tax cuts for the rich may not accomplish much more than help the rich keep more of their riches and exacerbate income inequality, the research indicates.

To which I would add that Canada’s House of Commons has declared the Proud Boys a terrorist organization.

Still waiting for someone to officially announce that snow is cold, water is wet and that it’s hard to see in the dark.

Meanwhile, I was despairing over new material because two Famous People died in the same week, inspiring schmaltz and cutting the supply of good stuff.

But I see that Jeff Danziger (WPWG) settled for the two-fer, which helps a little, though if God were truly omniscient, he wouldn’t have had to make that request.

(Can’t embed it, but here it is)

Community Comments

#1 Brad Walker
January/26/2021
@ 11:33 am

Long time ago I was dating a single mother. Money was tight for both of us. I had just finished a pay phone call (that’s how long ago that was) and without thinking reached into the return slot to check for coins. She chewed me out because that was something only “poor people” did. I couldn’t back it up, but my feeling was rich people are the last ones to pass up a chance at money. Don’t leave it on the table, and all that.

#2 Fred King
January/26/2021
@ 4:37 pm

And I’m so old that I remember when a senator was forced to withdraw from the VP nomination because he had been treated for depression. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Eagleton)

Though as my father put it, would you prefer Tom Eagleton with treatment or Spiro Agnew without?

#3 Mary McNeil
January/26/2021
@ 6:58 pm

Or even Tom Eagleton without…(having been treated for depression myself)

#4 Chris Weaver
January/27/2021
@ 2:17 am

Thank you for all the hard work you do. I’ve really enjoyed your writing. For most of this past year, it’s been a life saver. Living with people in denial becomes taxing. I do not enjoy the cold but Vermont is really looking good! :-)
I realize it says alot when there’s very little value reading other political publications. It appears that common sense is becoming very rare.
I enjoy your sense of humor, your intelligence and your writing style. This thank you is long overdo.
Covid19 brought time for me to start relearning the French language I knew as a child.
Merci, beaucoup!

#5 Bob Kamman
January/27/2021
@ 7:28 am

When did Navalny change his name from Alexei to Victor?

#6 Mike Peterson
January/27/2021
@ 7:48 am

Yesterday. For about two hours. Then he changed it back.

You were in the bathroom.

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