I think I’ve finally shaken that case of the flu.

They aren’t who you think they are.

Francis Wilkinson wonders whether the Republican Party’s presidential victory may turn out to be Paul Ryan’s comeuppance. Here’s a key bit from his column:

“We’re going to have insurance for everybody,” Trump said. “There was a philosophy in some circles that if you can’t pay for it, you don’t get it. That’s not going to happen with us.” People covered under the law “can expect to have great health care. It will be in a much simplified form. Much less expensive and much better.”


Like others before him — students at “Trump University,” investors in bankrupt Trump casinos — Ryan thought he could piggyback on Trump’s self-interest. Trump would get the White House. Ryan would get his ambitious agenda: large tax cuts for the wealthy, huge spending cuts in anti-poverty programs, such as food stamps and Medicaid, and the replacement of Obamacare with a less-regulated system that reduces subsidies for the needy, leaving millions without reliable access to health care.

The tax cuts still seem certain. But Trump keeps mucking up the Obamacare business so profoundly that it’s hard to see how Ryan can extricate himself from the mess.

However this plays out, it’s going to be a long four years. I suspect that this is the best we can hope for.

As a Southern Boy, from when I first became aware, I have watched as racists rewrite history so as to blame the victimized for being victims. Hell, from my first lessons in Virginia history in elementary school in the 1950’s, where the arrival of the first African slaves at Jamestown in 1619 was taught as part of “the Red Letter Year,” I was subjected to such rewritten racist propaganda–it was only later that I started to winnow out the lies (a process which, by the by, continues).

Consequently, I can say from first-hand experience that this is nothing new.

The Seattle Times’s Donald Westneat offers a strategy for avoiding a Trumpling. A snippet (emphasis added):

Trump uses words as weapons of mass distraction. He wants a circus. So the only antidote I can think of is: Don’t go in the tent. Don’t even peek inside.

I’m not saying don’t be engaged. I’m also not saying one can’t pause to celebrate that Friday’s inauguration is yet another peaceful transfer of democratic power.

I’m saying only this: Don’t listen to what he says.

I realized this when his own spokesperson of all people recently advised that we shouldn’t judge Trump by “what comes out of his mouth.”

Title:  Narcissus and the Reflecting Pool.  Image:  Donald Trump staring at his reflection in an iPhone.

Via PoliticalProf.

John Wooden:

Happiness begins where selfishness ends.

Via Raw Story.

The country is safe until Monday.

Politeness is a family affair.

Carthage Police Chief Greg Dagnan says the three children didn’t have school because of the bad weather. He says there weren’t any adults at the house, and one of the children was playing with a gun when it fired and hit the ten-year-old.

“Every interview we do, every piece of evidence we gather, really just seems to further indicate that this was an accident,” said Dagnan.

Title:  Evolving Creatures from the refilled swamp.  Images:  Racism, Lack of Healthcare, Fossil Fuel Dependence, Exploitation of Labor, Injustice.

Via Job’s Anger.

Ashleigh Brilliant:

My opinions may have changed, but not the fact that I’m right.

Republicans over the years:  2009,

Click to see the larger image at its original location.