The riot and MAGA protest march provided cover and diversion for the military-style operation. Trump, Bannon, Stone, Flynn likely helped plan the attempted coup, not just incite it.

This article was updated on January 26, 2021.

As the crowd wearing patriotic paraphernalia and MAGA gear — business owners, lawyers, realtors, office types, construction workers, QAnon cultists, police officers, firefighters — that Donald Trump incited to march to the U.S. Capitol on January 6 neared its destination, some noticed a curious development.

A large group was already on the west side of the Capitol, one that looked different from the usual MAGA crowd. They seemed more militant, with many dressed in paramilitary garb, wearing helmets, armor, and vests. They soon reached the west side of the Capitol Building, where hundreds of people were already positioned. Some carried Confederate flags and nooses. …

Boogaloo Bois and others join both BLM and pro-Trump actions to further goal of societal collapse

This story was updated on Jan. 15, 2021.

Violence at political protests has long been inflamed by provocateurs, including by those who seek to infiltrate the demonstrations and cause violence to make the cause look bad. That happened in the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s, the anti-war demonstrations of the 1960s, and the anti-nuclear protests of the 1980s, among others.

In the present case, Donald Trump claimed the leftist-anarchist network Antifa was behind the initial burning of buildings and other violence in Black Lives Matter protests over police killings of African Americans. Trump claimed Antifa was a terrorist organization, wrongly and cynically saying the largely anarchistic movement that has existed in some form since at least the 1970s was operated by Democrats. …

The Storm was to culminate on Jan. 6, 2021, in Washington, D.C., when leading Democrats supposedly would be imprisoned or even executed, according to QAnon. The Storm did end in death — for four Trump supporters and a police officer. Still, this could be the mere start of The Storm, believers say.

This article was updated on Jan. 24, 2021.

As Donald Trump’s White House gig wound down, messages on various social-media platforms became more fervent, even darker. …

Though the chaotic Trump regime is history, we must remember those who stood up for democratic ideals and those who did not.

This article was updated on January 24, 2021.

Some eight decades ago, America entered World War II on the right side of history, fighting against the German Nazis and other fascists.

But if it wasn’t for a few patriotic heroes, such as Major Gen. Smedley Butler, the United States could have a darker stain on its 1940s remembrances.

After Franklin Delano Roosevelt took office in 1933, he attracted the ire of many businessmen and Wall Street executives by changing the gold standard and cracking down on Wall Street corruption through greater securities accountability. In late 1933, Major Gen. Butler, a decorated Marine officer who fought in World War I and the 1910s Mexican Revolution and won two Congressional Medals of Honor, met with a representative of the business group, reportedly discussing a plot to overthrow FDR and replace him with a fascist regime modeled on Germany, Italy, and Spain. …

We must ensure this does not occur again and speak out more strongly against dictators throughout the world.

This article was updated on Jan. 13, 2021.

A president loses the election. The winning candidate is barred access to the office. The losing president claims victory. Records are destroyed. Lies confuse many. The president organizes a mob of supporters to violently attempt to overthrow the election results.

At least part of the script executed by Belarus dictator Alexander Lukashenko since the former Soviet Union republic’s August election became the Trump administration’s playbook to remain in power if the November vote totals didn’t go as planned. That was a big factor in why Donald Trump would not commit to a peaceful transition of power and incited and cheered on the mob to storm the Capitol on January 6. It was largely why he built a much larger security fence around the White House and replaced key military officials with sycophants, just in case his plan to claim an early victory worked and protests erupted. It was a major reason why he strongly criticized Minneapolis police for the death of George Floyd last May after long siding with police in similar killings, opening the door for widespread protests that he could use to create more of a militarized state. …

Poverty, unemployment, uninsured adults, attacks on media, erosion of national parks, among conditions that worsened under Don the Con.

Nov. 8, 2016, seems much longer than slightly more than four years ago. I remember the sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach as networks called the election for Donald Trump.

Little did I — or most anyone else — know how bad it would get. More than 400,000 American deaths from COVID-19, many of them preventable if Trump had devised a coordinated plan to attack the disease as leaders did in Canada, Australia, Germany, and most other wealthier nations. Inciting a blood-thirsty mob that stormed the U.S. Capitol, killed one police officer, injured many more, hunted down and tried to take hostage Mike Pence, Nancy Pelosi, and other leaders, desecrated artwork and other valuables in the seat of the American republic, stole laptops and other items, literally shit and pissed in the hallways of one of our most sacred landmarks. …

Consumer boycotts can work with enough support

The extraordinary political crisis that will likely continue until Joe Biden is finally inaugurated on January 20 seemed to peak in mid-December after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to hear an electoral challenge by 18 states, whose leaders wanted the votes of millions of Americans in other states thrown out.

In a response by officials from Pennsylvania — one of the targeted swing states — Attorney General Josh Shapiro described the Texas-led lawsuit as a “seditious abuse of the judicial process.” Michigan officials noted that numerous state and federal courts rejected similar claims of the state violating election laws made by embattled Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is under federal investigation for alleged bribery and abuse of his office. Paxton claimed that voting by mail was illegally enacted in those two states as well as Wisconsin and Georgia, hypocritically ignoring other states that also changed the rules of mail-in voting like his own. …

From Washington to Trump, U.S. elections have been marred by irregularities and, at times, outright fraud.

Since many people believe widespread voter fraud occurred in the 2020 U.S. presidential election while experts deny that possibility, here is a short primer on instances of more apparent irregularities in past elections. If we investigate alleged vote fraud in 2020, should we not investigate these instances?

1789: George Washington is elected the first U.S. president by a vote involving only fellow white, wealthy, male property owners — about 6 percent of the population. Adjusted for inflation, the first president’s fortune would be $525 million today, making him the richest individual to win that office until Republican Donald Trump — although some dispute the latter’s actual wealth.
Blacks were not allowed to vote, even in the North, for almost the first 100 years of the U.S., except in some states sporadically. Women were not allowed to vote in most states until the 1920s; New Jersey allowed them for a few years starting in 1790 before squashing that experiment. Many lower income people of all races were kept from voting by property-rights laws, poll taxes, and various tests that wealthier people could ignore, until the 1960s. Had those groups been allowed to vote in 1789, Washington, a popular leader after the Revolutionary War, likely would have still won. …

In 2000, Republicans filed counter lawsuits, ran out the clock on Gore to secure the White House. Gore conceded, even though he won the popular vote. This time, Republicans refused to concede even after they lost multiple times.

This article was updated on Jan. 13, 2021.

The 2020 election, contested by Donald Trump to the point that he attempted a violent coup on January 6, was not nearly as close as the one two decades ago.

That battle came down to one state, Florida, where Republican candidate George W. Bush held a razor-slim lead. The deck was stacked against Democrat Al Gore, who led in the national popular vote by about 540,000. Bush’s brother, Jeb, was Florida governor and campaigned hard for his sibling. He also refused to stop Secretary of State Katherine Harris, a Republican partisan who was Bush’s state campaign co-chairman and badly wanted an ambassador position in his administration, from overseeing the work of private data verification company Database Technologies, which later merged into ChoicePoint. …

Want to know what businesses and entertainers to support and boycott? Here are some executives and celebrities who supported Biden or Trump.

This article was updated on Dec. 2, 2020.

It’s always interesting to see who supports presidential candidates. Especially this year after the United States has undergone more upheaval in the past four years than a tsunami and Trump has shown little inclination to curb the chaos and his authoritative impulses.

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An endorsement from Oprah can sway more than a few voters, a study found. [Creative Commons photo/ Aphrodite in NYC]

While as far as swaying voters, only someone like Oprah Winfrey, who endorsed Joe Biden, can impact many people, one study found. On the other side, Rush Limbaugh’s endorsement of Donald Trump can also sway more than a few, though his listeners tend to be hard-line Trump supporters in the first place while Oprah attracts many apolitical viewers. …


Kevin Shay

Written for 45+ newspapers/mags. Written some books — see Visited 48 states, 30+ countries.

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