Steam Whistle News Feed – June 9, 2023

You know, you do a thing long enough, one which involves not only seeing much of the same dry, dull unpleasantness day in and day out—but also injustice, inequity, unfairness and various ways of indirect and direct silencing—and you start to get cynical. 

I’m starting to get cynical. 

Or maybe I’m just bored.  I don’t know. 

It’s great, though, for the entertainment industry.  Commercial goods industry.  Television networks, streaming services.  Alternative (read: right wing) media.  Or just fringe, extremist political movements like the Proud Boys or Moms for Liberty, who could easily exploit my cynicism and direct it into unfounded anger against the liberal government and everywhere its branches extend.  Or just get me to tune out entirely to the news and watch more Dancing with the Stars, or whatever, or any more of that bastard, discarded, filth-and-bodily-fluid covered degenerate offspring of television: celebrity reality TV.

But I’m not going to.  Not yet, anyway.

Everyone’s talking this week about Trump finally getting indicted for something, and you talk about a bit of news that’ll turn you cynical.  And I’m not talking about the indictment of a former president, per se, I’m talking about the fact that I still have to hear about Donald Trump doing dumb sh– after he’s been out of office for two years, and it took this long for him to actually get indicted for something.

Not that I wanted him to.  But you do the crime, you do the time.  That is, you actually do the crime, and then you do the time, thank you very much, chronic wrongful incarceration in America.  And outside of it being revealed that he was caught on tape saying he did do the crime, how many times in the past has someone come forward in a book or interview recounting something Trump said or did that showed him to be not smart enough to be someone who wouldn’t do the type of crime he’s in trouble for now?  You know?

Let’s just take a quick look at everything Trump has been or possibly might be indicted for in the foreseeable future:

Indicted for: 1.) withholding and obstructing the recovery of classified documents; 2.) his role in a hush money scheme to cover up (very likely) sexual relations with someone who makes pornos.  Or used to.

Investigated, which may lead to indictment, for: 1.) efforts to illegally challenge his own defeat in the 2020 presidential election; 2.) instigating the mob at the Capitol on January 6th, 2021; 3.) efforts to reverse the election results in the state of Georgia.

Being sued for: 1.) fraud, in civil court, for inflating the value of his assets by way more than they’re worth; 2.) Capitol mob instigation, again, by cops on the ground who actually got mob-stomped for their efforts.

Plus the E. Jean Carroll thing. Which he lost. And then the next E. Jean Carroll thing (chronologically the first E. Jean Carroll thing), which is set to go to trial in January, 2024.

And that’s not even including the stuff he’s already been investigated for, though it’s been determined that, in many cases, his fingerprints were never found at the crime scene, figuratively speaking, so no wrongdoing on his part could be established.  Someone else’s part who knew him and/or was close to him?  You bet, probably, likely, and so forth and so on.

I mentioned elections in there. Have you heard of ERIC? Me, neither. I mean, the perennially shirtless, beer-swilling, sixteen-year-old redneck who moved to my neighborhood from Georgia and drove a ’78 Chevy Nova with no hood until he got stabbed outside a bar the night of Ronald Reagan’s second inauguration aside, I didn’t know what it was. Apparently, no one did, barring a slew of industry insiders. It’s the Electronic Registration Information Center, a non-profit organization consistently utilized by both blue and red states to check their voter rolls against others’ to guard against the likelihood of massive, election-time fraud. Like, real fraud, not the stuff that got Joe Biden elected. And, apparently, nothing works better, in that regard. But Louisiana’s secretary of state reads in one of those totally misinformative, far-right, fake news websites that the thing was funded by George Soros or the founders of Pizzagate or Hillary Clinton’s e-mail server or whoever, and so he not only pulls his state out of cooperation, but then seven other red states follow. Because apparently gossip, peer pressure, rumor-spreading and other petty grade school bullsh– are more important in Republican-controlled states than…well, being an intelligent adult.

A report came out this week revealing where 30% of the water that gets diverted from the Colorado River goes as it flows to the seven states that can only maintain the populations they do because of it. To alfalfa. Which does what? Feeds livestock. You know what’s going on with the Colorado River, don’t you? Climate change, yes. And all seven states are running out of water because of that. And alfalfa gets 30% of it. Your kids probably get 0.000003%.

Who cares? you say.  What the hell are babbling about? you say.  You want to be able to gamble your hard-earned money away?  You want to be able to retire someplace cheap and scenic that’s not the South, or someplace where it doesn’t snow half the year?  You want to take a vacation to California some day?  I’m guessing ‘no’ on that last one, but this bit of news likely will wind up affecting you in your near future, despite what you believe.

Nor should it necessarily come as a surprise, if you really do already know what’s going on in and around the basin: The legal mandate one state may be under to cede its dwindling water supple to another; California—being the biggest agricultural producing state in America and the fifth biggest economy in the world (were it actually a country)—siphoning water to irrigate crops it arguably shouldn’t be like almonds, pistachio nuts and rice; people who feel compelled to water their lawns and wash their cars three times a week because they live in a f—ing desert.  All of this has helped lead to talk of dead pool status the last few years for the region’s two largest reservoirs (and indicators of doom), Lake Mead and Lake Powell.   Not to mention the dairy and beef industry’s contribution to greenhouse gases, industrial air pollution in California and the f–ing wildfires that keep showing up over there. 

Really, you shouldn’t be surprised.  Just outraged. 

Watering your lawn in a desert.  Seriously. 

And one final thing, about the war in Ukraine.  That deadly, indiscriminately murdering, self-flagellating, infighting circus that is Vladimir Putin’s Russian Federation and its military announced Friday that it caused crippling damage to eight of Ukraine’s German-supplied Leopard tanks, at what many are calling the outset of the smaller nation’s long-awaited counteroffensive.  But analysts who looked at the grainy, black and white, thermally-imaged footage are crying some serious “bullsh–” on it, giving responses to the effect of, “Uhh, yeah…that was a tractor?” (chuckling, looking at each other sideways and nudging ribs, I’m assuming, were they in the same room together, which I don’t think they were.)  Which it sure as hell looked like.  At the very least, it didn’t look anything like a Leopard tank. 

It’s like China when they showed a clip from the original Top Gun, claiming it was footage of one of their military’s jets shooting down another jet in a live-fire exercise?  When it was just a clip from Top Gun? Remember that?  Or like time the secretary of state pulled Louisiana out of the data-sharing partnership known as ERIC because of what someone wrote in The Gateway Pundit?  Remember?  Remember that?