The other victims

Anyone with a pet, especially a dog, knows that when we move the clocks ahead in the spring and back in the fall it has no influence on them or their biological clocks. They continue their daily activities probably wondering why we get off track for such long periods of time.

Animals do not adjust well to the artificial world we create that ignores the natural one

Deer continue to take the same trails they always have even when we put down a multi-lane highway.

In the book The Once And Future King by T.H. White, Merlin turns Arthur, the future king, into a goose so that he can fly over the land to learn that the borders on the map are drawn there by man and are not natural but artificial, and they mean nothing to anything other than man.

Now on the Southern border we are about to really throw things out of whack by putting up a wall.

The wall could cut off a Texas wildlife refuge and the habitat of big, beautiful cats.

The 654 miles of walls and fences already on the US-Mexico border have screwed up the environment there as they’ve cut off, isolated, and reduced populations of some of the rarest and most amazing animals, and have created miles of roads through wilderness areas.

There are 25 million acres of protected US public lands within 100 miles of the border, and this has made it ecologically rich with three mountain chains, the two largest deserts in North America, six wildlife refuges, six national parks, tribal lands, wilderness areas, and conservation areas.

On Mexico’s side of the border there are areas like El Pinacate y Gran Desierto Altar, which abuts the US Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge and parts of the Organ Pipe National Monument and Barry M. Goldwater Range in Arizona.

At the west end of the border a key salt marsh, the Tijuana Estuary, is the habitat for some 400 species of migrating birds, and on the east end birds and butterflies migrate through the Lower Rio Grande Valley. It has been estimated that there are 134 mammal, 178 reptile, and 57 amphibian species living within about 30 miles of the border, and of these 50 species and three subspecies are surviving only because The United States and Mexico have worked hard to conserve them.

Fences bisect species with specialized habitats, with the majority of the population on one side and the others having to exist separated from it, and this reduces gene flow and breeding and that can lead to a greater risk of extinction.

Fences also restrict animals’ access to water sources.

Right now, about two-thirds, or 1,350 miles, of the border remains unfenced so migratory and wandering animals can still move freely, but the big, beautiful wall is planned to close this off, and this wall could also affect flood plains like the Rio Grande floodplain, and this is likely to cause floods.

The planned wall will not just affect animals on the U.S. side of the border, but will have an effect on the Mexican side, and Mexico might not like their ecology adversely affected without its input.

 

 

 

 

Our new Secretary of State

The United States may not have a Secretary of State to take care of necessary diplomacy, but we have the perfect stand in, Ivanka Trump.

Last week she went to Peru with her husband to join Vice President Mike Pence for the Summit of the Americas, a meeting of all of the leaders of the 35 nations that make up North and South America. President Trump had been scheduled to attend, but stayed home decided to address the chemical bombing attack in Syria.

Ivanka was

“Excited to join the US Delegation to @SummitAmericas in Peru, where we will discuss the importance of public-private collaboration to promote investment & sustainable development. I look forward to highlighting our women’s economic empowerment efforts in the region.”

After she revealed the details of a new economic program to help empower women of the Americas, she met some heads of state and discussed issues relating to the theme of this year’s conference, “Democratic Governance Against Corruption”, a topic we can be sure she knows much about.

Congress didn’t confirm her for this. And although she isn’t qualified and has no diplomatic experience, her father is the president, so that is all that is needed.

Isn’t that we all got jobs for which we had no qualifications?

Daddy?

 

Why is the GOP actually leaving Congress?

The generally assumed reason that so many Republicans are choosing not to seek reelection in 2018 is that they are jumping from a sinking ship.

But they knew, long before he was even the party’s nominated candidate, that Trump was not presidential material, yet they had been backing him after his inauguration no matter how bizarre and destructive his rhetoric and actions have been to the country and their party.

Most of the Republicans did not enter congress rich, but became so during their tenure. They have consistently voted to cut taxes and bestow advantages on the country’s rich, and in so doing they either benefited from that at the time, or saw they were heading in that direction and would eventually benefit as well.

With the passage of the latest Republican tax bill, they reached the optimum point of the benefits  possible, and clearly saw there could be no more as explaining them could reveal the true nature of the charade. What was there is enough.

Their work is done.

All that is left now is to retire with a good pension and good benefits while enjoying the advantages they created for themselves in the name of the working class who will see no benefits, at least not in numbers that justify the bill.

Paul Ryan is a standout example.

When his father died, Ryan used his inherited Social Security benefits to pay for college. He did not earn those benefits, he got what his father had paid into. He calls Social Security an entitlement because for him it was, while it is not for those who pay into it.

He wants to raise the age to 70 for people to start receiving their full Social Security benefit amount while he retires at top pension with a Cadillac health care program at the age of 48.

And now he can choose any of the high paying jobs that will be offered him by those he worked in congress to benefit, and can take advantage of the tax bill he helped create.

He is not leaving a sinking ship just as the others aren’t. He and they are leaving to enjoy what they planned for and what they worked for while having done little for the benefit of those they were supposed to work for and represent.

They are the eunuchs leaving the Forbidden City with their testicles in the jars that hold them with as much treasure as they can carry out before anyone takes notice.

Does he even pay attention?

 

The Irony of yet another time that Trump wants to blame everyone else for his troubles, this time he claims the enemy is specifically all those Democrats running the Russian probe and the “raid” on the offices of Michael Cohen , his attorney.

But the reality is, those in charge of all of this are:

Mueller a republican appointed by Trump,
Rod Rosenstein a republican appointed by Trump,
FBI Director Chris Wray appointed by trump, and                                     U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman also appointed by Trump.

So it is hard to understand upon what he bases his claim,

“These are the most biased group of people. These people have the biggest conflicts of interest I’ve ever seen. Democrats, all, or just about all, either democrats or a couple of Republicans that worked for [former] President Obama.”

He is not the country

After the FBI raided the New York office and residence of Michael Cohen with search warrants obtained by FBI agents and federal prosecutors in New York in coordination with special counsel Robert Mueller’s team looking for information about a $130,000 payment the attorney made to porn star Stormy Daniels, Trump declared that beside it being a witch hunt and a disgrace, he also declared it was

 “an attack on our country in a true sense, an attack on what we all stand for.”

But Trump may have forgotten he had pretty much invited them to do that when in response to a question about his knowledge of the pay off Trump had suggested they go get the answer.

“You’ll have to ask Michael Cohen. Michael is my attorney. You’ll have to ask Michael.”

As far a being an attack on the country, again, Trump has inflated himself to be as great as if not one and the same with the country.

He isn’t. Nor was the raid on Cohen’s offices, complete with search warrants, a raid on the country. 9/11 and the attack on Pearl harbor were attacks on the country.