Politics, Opinion and a little Religion to spice things up. Welcome to Sunday Morning Coffee a regular feature done each Sunday for years. Advance Warning: This is going to be rather short today. Packing up to head to the Okoboji Writers Retreat later today. Lots of gear to pack up and then there is that drive. Yikes! Let's go!
Money, Money, Money
This past week I was with my congregation for Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, and there is, in the liturgy, a host of readings from the Torah about turning to "false gods". In 2021 we're not talking about idols carved out of wood or stone but those "false gods" that we bow down to...and there are many. However, the most powerful god is...money. It trumps...everything. Want proof?
Money, in this case, is much more important than say...democracy. This week in Russia there are federal elections. The leading opposition party to Valdimir Putin, which is all but banned and has had their leader Alexei Navalny imprisoned, joined with others and encouraged Russians to band together to vote Putin out of office. They had a website (which was promptly shut down) and an app on Google and Apple where they could share information and encourage others to vote.
Well our buddy Tim Cook (Apple) and his counterpart over at Google Sundar Pichai looked this over and decided that money was worth much more than the right to vote in a "democratic" election. So they shut down the apps. It seems that taking care of your shareholders and a little pressure from Valdimir won the day. How typical...
Nothing, Just Nothing
So, those of you who are Republicans I have a question: What policies are important to you? I can help you answer that. Obstruction is the official policy of the GOP and it has been since 2008. Now, you might think the party really does have some policy goals but when Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) just comes out and says, "Hey, we're not going to support anything..." that pretty much sums it up. So, the "Do Nothing Party" is once again lining up to deny Americans the right to vote (see Russia), a living wage, education, health care... Yeah...you get...nothing. Nothing, just nothing.
Here in the (once) great state of Iowa pandering to the idea that nothing is a winning formula is working. Gov. Kim Reynolds (R-IA) is, according to a recent poll, enjoying a 53% approval rating. So, the majority of Iowans really believe that doing nothing about COVID-19 is a solid win. The majority of Iowans believe that doing nothing to stop voter suppression is a positive. The majority of Iowans believe that doing nothing about the health care of thousands of people on Medicaid works. I could go on but you get the picture. Meanwhile Iowa Democrats are out there attempting to push legislation that will make a positive difference in the lives of working families but, of course, when you are in the minority...nothing...wins. (Image - Des Moines Register)
Great At Lies
There is one thing Iowa Republicans excel at...lying. The recent special election vote in Ankeny (House District 37) proved that once again. The "Reynolds Lap Dog" Mike Bousselot beat Andrea Phillips by 377 votes. Of course he lied his way to the victory claiming shady deals by Phillips and that she wanted to "defund" the police, threw in the word "China" and that she was tied to a "socialist agenda". All bullshit. The China charge is the most awesome of all lies because it was Bousselot who was Chief of Staff for former Gov. Terry Branstad (R-IA) who became the Ambassador to China. And, of course we all know what a stellar job he did while cozying up to his best friend Xi. Please....
The first draft of the District Maps are out and I suspect they won't fly. Depending on who you talk to it's a boost for Democrats and Republicans. No, really. I've heard from both. We'll see how that flies.
Meanwhile the great Polk County Steak Fry happened yesterday. It was a bit surreal as a small group of Democrats came together to eat steak, chicken and/or a veggie burger. My choice. Two years ago in the midst of the presidential primary fight thousands of people came out along with their preferred candidates and it was huge. Last year we stayed in our cars and watched a big screen. This year we sat in lawn chairs in the sun (and yes it was damn hot) to listen to one candidate or office holder after another decry the state of Iowa and the politics of the nation. Two of us, me and Nancy Bobo were sporting Mike Franken shirts. Hey...there were TWO of us.
We had to show proof of vaccination and wear a mask when not eating. We were doing the "social distance" thingy and there were not a ton of hugs. Have to be careful you know. It was great to see so many friends again and to chat it up a bit about politics. The people cheered when we were reminded that Federal Judge Robert Pratt ordered the state of Iowa to immediately halt enforcement of a law that prevents school boards from ordering masks to be worn to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. But, perhaps not realizing that Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller (D-IA), who announced to the crowd that he was seeking another term as AG would defend Iowa and the Governor in court. Ironic...no?
I couldn't stay for the entire event. Had a girls softball game to attend. My granddaughter was playing. Somethings are really important. But it was worth every effort...now the work begins...again. Daily but it is an uphill slog.
Are the unvaccinated guilty of...murder? Stay with me on this. It's something that I brought up to my Mason City congregation on Yom
Kippur. Let's say a person decides not to get the COVID-19 vaccine and they are asymptomatic. But they give the virus to another person be it a parent, child, friend, co-worker. And, let's say that that person gets very sick so sick they must be cared for in the Intensive Care Unit. Because there are so many COVID patients in the ICU that when a person has a heart attack, stroke or serious injury and there is no room to care for him or her...they die. They die because the unvaccinated person made a decision to not get the vaccine and that decision resulted in the death of another. Murder?
That's not too far from the issue of AIDS. If a person who has aids knowingly passes it on to another they are held criminality responsible. Sure the person who has COVID but is not showing signs may not know he/she has the virus. But...let us take this one step further. Let's say the unvaccinated person does become very sick and needs an ICU bed that same bed that could have been used by another person who has a medical emergency but...there is no room. Murder?
Chew on that....
I'm outta here. Headed to Arnold's Park on Lake Okoboji for the Okoboji Writers Retreat that was put together by Julie Gammack. I get to present and learn and it's "sort of" a vacation. I'll still be working but also taking in the wisdom of some wonderful writers.
Have a great Sunday and thanks for reading!