On Trump’s latest executive order

From a post I just made on Facebook:

(I used a conservative source, The Hill, so no one could complain I was getting this from the librul media.)

I remember, back in 1994, a school board in Texas wanted to do this very thing. I remember Pat Robertson praising them. I remember thinking I’d been so wrong about Pat Robertson all those years, that he truly was a racist and was preaching poison. Now Trump is doing what that Texas board wanted to do, only trying to force the entire nation to teach this white-washed, racist version of history to the youth. Not surprisingly, “Trump Youth” and “Hitler Youth” are trending on Twitter right now.

Meanwhile, Trump is doing his usual politics of division, telling people that liberals are trying to destroy the country. Every day with this clown in office, I get more and more worried that one day my views are going to be illegal.

It’s sickening to hear Trump, a white supremacist, twist the words of Martin Luther King, using his name in vain, projecting onto the left what Trump himself is doing.

The efforts of so many over the years to bring full equality to this country, are finally bearing fruit–so Trump is trying to erase it overnight. This is what conservatism has done over and over again throughout history: Reformers come along, start to make real change that improves the lives of everyone, so conservatives wipe it all out again and go back to the way things were. This is one of many reasons why I abandoned the GOP some 15 years ago.

New revision and buy links for my book Tojet

After April’s fiasco on the Lulu website–after a disastrous “upgrade” which screwed up thousands of people’s projects–I’m in the process of moving my books over to Draft2Digital.  You will still see links for the Lulu version of Tojet around the Net, but I retired the Lulu project, so they should disappear soon.  The link you need to find Tojet is here.  It leads you to different vendors.  Not Amazon yet, because my old links have to disappear first so Amazon doesn’t blacklist my new links.  Amazon’s rules are draconian….. But you can find a MOBI formatted book for your Kindle here.

It’s taking so long to move my books over because the files are 12-15 years old and need extensive formatting fixes to work with modern ebooks.  The days of using your print book’s PDF as an ebook are long over.  Not only that, but I’ve also been skimming through looking for stuff I want to change.

So Tojet has been revised for 2020, and I’m about to start the process with The Lighthouse.  I really look forward to updating Lighthouse because–even though it seems like everybody else prefers Tojet–The Lighthouse is my favorite of the two, with its Gothic themes and–I think–superior writing.  Yet everybody likes Tojet better.  Go figure.  😉  [Update: Lighthouse is done; see here for links.]

Friends & pod people & Christians wanting power & Weimar Prussia

While watching a John Oliver video on COVID Conspiracy Theories, I was inspired to check out Chris’ Facebook page.  Chris is in my story of Richard and Tracy; he was a friend Richard made here in town, who basically supplanted me as Richard’s BFF, inspiring some jealousy–but I also liked Chris.  However, over time, he’s turned out to be–well, how to put this charitably–nutty.

I’ve watched his Facebook over the years; there’s been everything from birther theories to fluoride to anti-vax to Oathkeepers to Obama putting us in concentration camps to aliens to flat-earth.  He was very upset with his ex for vaccinating their son.  He’d been quiet for some time, but COVID has inspired a whole bunch of posts lately about how it’s all a hoax and Trump is great and drain the swamp and masks will kill and COVID doesn’t kill but the vaccine will!  Then there was a post about how the vaccine was going to inject nano-bots into our bodies.  He pulls from such respectable sources as Alex Jones and Infowars.

One recent post said, Do you actually know anybody who’s been killed by COVID?  Like nobody *really* has died from it.  I saw this, like, a day or two after learning that my old online friend Enema had died of it, and that my mom and brother are dealing with it.  The brother of one of my college friends also died of it a few months ago.  So yeah, it happens, and you don’t have to be elderly.

This is the danger of these conspiracy theories that go around these days.  Before, they were annoying but mostly harmless; now they can get people killed.

Years ago, I pulled up some stuff about Chris on the Internet, as I described here–a history of people calling him a con and a psychopath and even clinically paranoid.  This is the person who replaced me as Richard’s BFF?

I remember writing this post after discovering that Chris had unfriended me on Facebook in 2011.  I was afraid of what Richard and Tracy had been telling him about me.  Three years later, I wrote this post because Chris had friended me again, making me wonder what had happened.  I’m amazed that with all my political posts over the past year, he has said nothing–heck, nothing about anything to me, really.  Makes me wonder if he even remembers me.

Given that, and given what I seriously think is some kind of mental illness, I finally decided to take him off my Facebook.  This is just crazy.  Is this QAnon?  I don’t know a lot about QAnon, but that may be where it’s coming from.  I just read about a Reddit support group for people who’ve lost loved ones to the Pod People (ie, QAnon).

This is the kind of thing that’ll lead to the end of this great democracy: people too far into their conspiracy theories to have any idea what’s really going on, while the Truth has been heavily documented and proven for all Americans to see in legitimate sources: government documents, videos, transcripts, news articles.  And these QAnon people call *us* “sheeple,” while they’re blindly following some anonymous poster on the Net.  They’re sucking on the Fog Machine.

Oh yeah, and this article, Christianity Will Have Power, came out today, trying to explain why white Evangelicals are so heavily supporting Trump even now.  It described a deeply religious community in Iowa, and a Trump speech which for the rest of us was about him saying he could shoot somebody on Fifth Avenue and not lose any voters.  But for the people at the speech, it was about giving white Evangelicals power and domination.

For anybody who knows white Evangelicals, and follows ex-vangelicals and political and religious commentators, this is hardly news.  But it inspired me to share it on social media with the comment: “It’s Weimar Prussia! I recommend “Sanctity of Rural Life” by Shelley Baranowski. The parallels are uncanny.”

I read that book back in 2016 or 2017 as research for my work-in-progress.  It was published 20 years earlier and had nothing to do with today’s American political climate.  But it described how Prussia’s farmers were deeply religious, and while they depended on immigrants from Poland to do farm work (Germans wouldn’t do it anymore), they hated the Poles bringing Catholicism into Protestant Prussia.  It was also controversial to let all those immigrants in.  The deeply religious Prussians saw their way of life eroding, with their kids going off to the cities for work, and the cities full of every kind of sin and iniquity.  The Weimar Republic took away the titles of their nobility, and, as far as they were concerned, also took God out of the schools.  They were upset that they didn’t say prayers in schools anymore.

Sound familiar?

Then the Nazis stepped in and said they would fix all that.  They would save Germany.  They would save Christianity.  They were a kind of “Christ.”  They would stop abortion.  They had all the same concerns as the Prussians.  Christian Nazi groups sprang up.  Junkers, the landowners and military and political class, thought Hitler and the Nazis were barbaric, but figured they could use Hitler as a tool to change things back the way they wanted (monarchy etc.).  They could keep him under control!  They also spread conspiracy theories about the Jews, such as the “stabbed in the back” theory and the story that Jews were behind everything, controlling everything, influencing everything.

Sound familiar?

Since I read that during Trump’s campaign, the alarm bells have been going off for me for years.  Everything I’ve seen since then, has only confirmed those alarm bells.  He’s just as bad as we feared he would be, if not worse.  And huge groups of our population are so entrenched in their alternate realities that they don’t even see it.  They think Trump is the savior of America–just as Prussians thought Hitler was the savior of Germany.  And GOP leadership thought they could control him, use him as a tool to turn America back the way they wanted.

I’ve been studying history and literature for most of my life; I have seen written in those pages just how entrenched conservatives can get in power and control, how much they want to keep it, and how it prevents society from progressing in ways that help the downtrodden, that help everyone have a better life.  It especially struck me when reading a book about Asia, but also when reading about humanists and many religious societies such as the Puritans.  I realized–from reading the Bible through many times and seeing what it really said–that over and over again, liberals would try to bring values to society that would make them more Christian as Christ taught it, but conservatives would step in and turn it all back again.  I began to realize who the real Christians are (and you don’t have to be named a “Christian” to fit the bill).

The people who believe these conspiracy theories are not just harmless kranks anymore (and, depending on the theory, weren’t always before, either).  They could actually lead to the end of our Great Experiment.  Already, I see leaders like Macron and Merkel taking over where we once stood as leaders of the Free World.  They have to.

I will leave you with this video by Wiegand:

 

2020’s continued suckage

What a sucky week.  We were going to visit my family soon, only to learn that my mom and brother have caught COVID.  Now who knows when we’ll see them, and I’m worried that they’ll be the next ones in the dire number that keeps going up….

Then tonight I go to wish an old Forum friend happy birthday, and find that he died of COVID a few months ago.  Such a horrible end for Enema.  🙁  I wanted to post about it on the Forum, only to find that it’s been abandoned to hackers.

Well, Froggie just turned up on the windowsill again, making the kitty happy.  So at least there’s something….

Thought I’d recognize the 10-year-anniversary, but it slipped right by me.

July 1, 2010 is the day we felt forced to end the friendship with our narcissistic abusers, Richard and Tracy.  It was a trying day, when I was blasted with abuse by Tracy as she crowed about it on Facebook, while Richard betrayed me by never telling anyone the truth, instead deflecting all blame onto me.  Meanwhile, Tracy felt convinced she was right, when she was all wrong.

It felt like the end of the world. I couldn’t stop crying or my mind going over and over it. I felt like I wanted to die.

I struggled going to church, which only reminded me of Richard.  I struggled with sleep.  I struggled with getting up and going about my day.  I longed for my betrayer to apologize.  I longed for Tracy to finally recognize she was wrong and admit how she’d abused me.

The ten-year anniversary has passed.  On the one hand, wow has time flown by.  In many ways, 10 years ago feels like yesterday.  But on the other hand, that feels like a totally different world, like it was so long ago.

So long ago, in fact, that when the anniversary finally came, I forgot about it, and it passed.

But I still want to celebrate 10 years since we finally kicked Tracy to the curb.  She was the worst person I’ve ever known, and I’ve known some abusive a**holes.  She was racist, ableist, abusive, controlling, foul-mouthed, vicious.  She was no Christian, though she pretended to be one.  The entire time I knew her in person (and not just on the Internet), I struggled because I didn’t want to be around a bully like her, but felt forced into friendship with her whether I liked it or not.  Seriously, forcing somebody to be friends with you does nothing but create resentment.

And the fact that I did finally gather up the strength to cut her off, has given me more confidence in myself.  It has proven to me that I can trust my own instincts, even when other people tell me I’m being ridiculous.  This experience also taught me about narcissism and other Cluster B disorders, something I knew nothing about, before.  Without that knowledge, would I have recognized Trump for the monster he is, or tried to tell myself (like so many others–especially the news media–have done the past few years) that he isn’t really so bad as he appears?

This experience taught me that even the person I consider my best friend can be a narcissist, the telltale signs of it.  My subsequent friendships have been healthier, as I stay away from problem people and enforce boundaries.

I am much happier now, ten years later.