Steam Whistle News Feed – July 1, 2022

I just have to say, what a great time it’s been to start a semi-weekly column summarizing the most important news of the last few days. And by ‘great’, I mean ‘Jesus f—ing Christ, what the hell is happening to the legal fabric of this country’?

The Supreme Court gets center stage this week.  And it’ll probably be a one-person show. (Meaning a nine-person show.  Or six.)  Maybe we can fit in some side acts before it’s through.  We’ll see. 

In a little over a week’s time, the current U.S. Supreme Court ruled that previous Supreme Court decisions (or non-decisions) on keeping religion separate from government, allowing the Environmental Protection Agency to actually protect the environment, allowing states to try and keep guns out of the hands of nutcases who couldn’t justify owning one, maintaining the sovereignty of tribal lands and keeping abortion a federally protected act were passé, or just the products of outright bad thinking. 

But now we must have good thinking.  Seems logical to assume.

In the wake of all this, the Supreme Court also got its first African-American female justice in….ever.  Which might just end up a historical footnote by comparison, for as history-interfering and far-reaching the Court’s recent rulings were and will be, generations on down the line.  

Many people affected by those rulings are also starting to worry the current Court will not only agree to hear future cases challenging the hard-fought liberties granted to historically oppressed groups in America, but either rule to allow states to relegate those groups to second-class citizenry (again), or establish some kind of new-fangled precedent regarding them.

And they should worry, no matter what Samuel Alito may not want to tell you about it. And because of what Clarence Thomas is actually telling you about it.

And by the way, having absolutely nothing to do with that previous bit of news, Florida’s ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law took effect Friday. And—you guessed it—people are starting to worry. Why? Because they fear unforeseen, real-world repercussions of accidentally saying or doing something illegal as soon as some reactionary hawk wants to rat them out for stepping over what is more or less an invisible line not made completely clear by the ambiguity of the law. Because laws are not hermetic monoliths, declared once and then sealed up for eternity like the tomb of an inbred, Pharoah Man-baby. They’re not memes, tweets, or any other ridiculous form of social media post, which nobody remembers in a week. They continually influence human response, interpretation and future precedential case rulings, which means, at the very least, whatever slightest bit of insidiousness may be hidden between their lines and codification, the lower-level snakes and jackals who support them will come out and declare enforcement as they see fit, legally or otherwise, into perpetuity.

The folks who write up bills, pass laws and who sit on the American judiciary are well, well aware of such diffusion dynamics. Trickle-down effects aren’t just used to justify fast fashion and supply-side economics.

Ideologues rely on it, too.   

And speaking of child rulers who believe themselves to be lightning rods of the divine, this week in From Out of Mouths of Man-Babies, more insight is surfacing as to Donald Trump’s behind-closed-door behavior during and around the time of the Capitol riot. Opinion is one thing, and potentially questionable; hearsay and conjecture—sure, these can be just as dubious. But first-person accounts of having witnessed a person’s words and deeds? These are what you should judge someone by, in the end. Not necessarily when they have TV cameras in front of them, but when they think no one’s really paying attention. Which is why the public doesn’t have such access, generally speaking, to their elected leaders all the time. Because if they did, they’d start murmuring stuff like, “That’s who I voted in? Hell, there’s nothing special about that jackass. He couldn’t even pronounce ‘anonymous’. I can pronounce ‘anonymous’. I could probably do no worse a job than he could.”

Because: “Why are we having all these people from sh–hole countries come here?” No, I’m not asking you, I’m reminding you. Without people recounting the closed-door, philosophical musings of Donald Trump, we never would’ve had that closed-minded, bigoted gem by one of the country’s all-time most jackass of executive leaders. Historically speaking.

By the way, speaking of world leaders behaving like pissed off a–holes, Vladimir Putin and the sinkhole Russian Armed Forces continued their false-premise assault on Ukraine, now over four months in, killing more innocent people just trying to go about their daily lives, or what’s left of them, at a shopping mall and residential areas in the country’s industrial East.

The Sri Lankan economy collapsed, too, by the way.  Collapsed.  No teetering on the brink, no steeply rising inflation, no bubble predicted to burst in a year or two.  Collapsed.  Right onto its face.  Think about that next time you want to impeach Joe Biden because of high gas prices, which have nothing to do with the president, strictly speaking, and everything to do with geopolitics (i.e. pissed off a–holes like Vladimir Putin), Wall Street, OPEC, Big Oil and your state’s fuel taxes. 

Oh, and monkeypox.  As in ‘the number of monkeypox infections are growing at an alarming rate in Europe and Africa’.  Not ‘monkeypox has everything to do with gas prices, as well’.   Because it doesn’t.

Though you never know.  The way the world is going, give it maybe a year.