Winter in America

In case you’re not aware, an upside-down American flag is a distress signal 

As you might imagine, as an American citizen, it’s been difficult for me to focus on blogging much this week. Or for that matter, on much of anything. I try to keep politics to a minimum on this, a music site. But the site of the US Capitol being invaded by a bunch of Trump-inspired thugs sent me (and a lot of others) over the edge. And so it cannot be ignored.

I am not going to lecture you. But I did think about what I could post that would speak to the moment. I thought maybe a “Blues for America” post or perhaps just a bunch of new tunes for a new year. Instead – without comment – I instead decided to post these half-dozen songs.

For those of you around the world who might wonder if America is still the beacon of freedom it says it is, frankly I have no fucking idea. Nor does anybody else. Best to get your own houses in order and don’t count on us to be there. Deal with that.

21 thoughts on “Winter in America

  1. I, too, was appalled at what has transpired, and what still could. We’re neighbours & long term friends, and we’ll always have your back. While dire, I believe this is one on those moments that America finds its way out of, and is a better place for it. The journey may be difficult, painful, ugly & tiring, but you’ll make it. I have faith that truth, honesty, fairness & justice will prevail.

    And nice song choices; I feel it. All the best!

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    1. Thanks. Good to know, especially since our guy has treated your guy like shit. I am cynical today but yes, Joe Biden is the right man in the right place at the right time. What you saw this week was a death and a rebirth. BTW, I am much more aligned with your country’s politics and culture and would think about moving there if it wasn’t so damn cold! 🙂

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  2. I hear you, Jim. When I decided to settle in America for good in 1997, I never imagined I would witness what happened this past week. It truly feels like I’m in the wrong film.

    Perhaps, somewhat naively, I had always looked at America as a land of opportunity, which is tolerant and welcomes foreigners. Apart from a common notion, this is based on very positive personal encounters I’ve had over the years where complete strangers initiated a conversation and/or offered help after noticing I might need some. But I also need to add I’m a white dude. My dear wife who is from Puerto Rico and a person of color has had different experiences…

    Despite the despicable acts we saw, I still refuse to believe these thugs who breached the Capitol represent this country and that most folks in this country reject their behavior. I’m also encouraged by the fact that Americans previously demonstrated they can pull together in difficult times. As such, I’m hopeful we’ve reached and hopefully passed the low point and that things will get better going forward.

    Undoubtedly, it’s going to take time to heal all the wounds. I believe each and everyone living in this country can play a constructive role. Let’s start with being more kind to one another, even if we have political or other disagreements. Greet your neighbors, hold the door for other people, let other drivers in, who wait to enter the street you’re on.

    I realize these things may sound trivial, but if even seemingly small gestures can make a huge difference, if most folks do them.

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    1. Yes, thanks for the reminder of what we can be. You come from a country that demonstrated many years ago what happens when we go down the road of demonizing “other.” But now your country is perhaps THE beacon of freedom in Western Europe ironically.

      I agree with everything you say. In fact, that helps me with a decision I’ve been struggling with. A good friend (and business associate) of mine is a Trumpster. We agree not to talk politics. And I was debating what to do because I’m so freaking angry at those people. But I think the best thing we can do is continue to be friends. Maybe her conservatism will morph back to middle-of-the-road.

      As to those thugs, I’m not sure if they understand that their pathetic little coup had to succeed fully. Because after invading our Capitol and killing a cop? Hoo boy, will they inherit the whirlwind.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You know, I used to be much more of a pessimist, especially during my teenage years and ’20s. And also more of a political partisan!

        Then, two things happened: I met my wife who was and still is a more optimistic person and who also doesn’t plan too along ahead – the latter was something that nearly killed me in the beginning – how can you not plan for the future!

        Don’t get me wrong. It’s not she doesn’t care about the future. Her philosophy is more not to overly worry about things until they happen and in the meantime allow them to spoil your life.

        The second factor, I think, might be age. I guess I’ve mellowed in general as I’ve gotten older. As a young person, I didn’t shy away to “fight” with other people (never physically!); nowadays, I’m much more careful in picking my battles.

        I will also say gun ownership is much, much lower in Germany than in America. In this country you never know whether somebody might pull a gun on you, if you get angry at them!

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        1. I could certainly be mellower but am not quite the angry young man I used to be. Gun ownership in this country is a travesty. That said, I don’t worry about it too much on a day-to-day basis. Most of the guns in this country are concentrated in the hands of a relatively few, mostly law-abiding citizens. If we could get rid of assault rifles, that would be a major step in the right direction. But this country is not owned by the people it is owned by lobbyists.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Best wishes to you guys. What happened in Georgia this week was amazing – Stacey Abrams is a national hero. I think that’s a better indication of long term change than a bunch of radicalised lunatics.

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    1. I give you credit. You sure have an in-depth knowledge of our politics if you know Abrams’ name. Also it turns out that the Republican vote was down. Trump was successful in suppressing it. He doesn’t give a damn about the Republican party so he figured he’d punish them on the way out. There is no honor among thieves.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Mitch McConnell was already awful before Trump came along . Trump’s managed to divide the Republic party into two factions, which might be helpful in the long run.

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        1. They’re a party that used to stand for something, sold their soul to the devil and reaped the whirlwind. They will have to become something more than a cult of personality to remain viable.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. I only learned recently how Abraham Lincoln was a Republican, and the two parties gradually swapped positions over the early 20th century.

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        3. For many years, the Democrats were ruled by Southerners who held back progress of all sorts including and especially on race. They’re still doing it. Mitch McConnell is a Southerner.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. The USA are a deeply divided country. This is not new, but Trump deepened the division during his presidency. It’s time for him to go!

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  5. This week just plain broke my heart seeing what went on in Washington. I told my kids, that their kids would study that day in school as there has never been anything like it in my lifetime.

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    1. No there hasn’t. I was thinking 9/11. But that was an attack by a foreign power. This was an attack by American citizens on our government. All were idiots, some who just seemed to get off on just stealing trinkets. But some who came to kill. If those explosive devices and Molotov cocktails had gone off it would have been a bloodbath.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I woke up that morning thinking ‘there’s gonna be a bit of silly buggers today’, imagining the pointless objections to ballots being confirmed… I could never have imagined what actually unfolded and is still, in many ways, unfolding.
    What I think leaves me more disgusted and appalled – even from the outside – is the fact so few Republicans are willing to actually do something about it and speak out. I used to ask myself (and you) ‘what the hell is it going to take for them to wake up and get this fat fuck out of there?’ It now seems clear that there is nothing that they won’t turn a blind eye too and even look to make up bullshit (‘oh, they were patriots but they’d been infiltrated by Antifa’).. I don’t even know what the world has come to now.
    As a student of history I know only too well where unchecked rhetoric can lead under the guise of ‘free speech’ and there’s a reason that it needs to be prevented. It’s that fool and his inbred, braindead children of his claiming it’s ‘fascism’ when social media networks step in and ban him (note; they didn’t ban the POTUS account) and stirring the mob that don’t realise that it’s their actions that mirror those of history that lead to terror.
    Finding excuses for, justifying and allowing through silence is even worse because it enables them.
    I only hope it’s not too late.

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    1. It is most assuredly not too late, Tony. For one thing, all those asshole rioters did was slow the certification of Joe Biden down by a couple of hours, not stop it. As to the Republicans, they have proven themselves over time to be a bunch of craven, cowardly sheep. It’s unclear to me how they live with themselves or for that matter, even sleep at night. Oh, and Trump has NO social media presence whatsoever currently including YouTube. Let’s hope he doesn’t discover WordPress.

      The good news is that a couple of major Republicans (Liz Cheney, Mitch McConnell) have come squarely down on the side of impeachment which gives some of the others “permission” to do it. Recall impeachment has multiple steps – the House votes, the Senate convicts. Will there be enough votes in the Senate? Don’t know.

      As to Trump, any way you look at it, he’s toast. Either he will be prevented from running again or he and his loathsome progeny (who I taunt regularly on Twitter), will spend the rest of their lives embroiled in lawsuits.

      As to the Trump filth that invaded the Capitol, well I’m fond of saying if you’re gonna stage a coup, you better succeed. These asshats are facing some serious charges – sedition, insurrection, conspiracy, murder. What they thought was a fun day in Washington supporting Hitler will now be for many a lengthy stay in federal prison. The FBI and other law enforcement blew the response but they are now all over this shit.

      As to the remaining Trumpsters who are promising civil war because the election was ‘stolen” I say this – bring it.

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