There are two huge stories afield tonight. First, Finland has officially joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). Finland opted for neutrality after the organization of NATO in 1949 to stand against the expansion of the Soviet Union, but Russia’s invasion of non-NATO country Ukraine last year sparked concern in a country that shares an 832-mile border with Russia. NATO members share an ironclad security guarantee among them, agreeing to come to each other’s aid if any of them is attacked.
I love that your 2 major stories were Finland and Wisconsin. And “in other news” was TFG’s arrest.
Today was an amazing day. Why? Because once again, I believed in the rule of law. I believed in our Constitution. I believed that the rich and powerful and the everyday citizen, if they are corrupt,
can be held to the same laws. That Truth is more powerful than repubs who would shelter a criminal just to win an election. Or for money and power. And that Professor HCR has patiently and brilliantly built this case by showing us how History and Justice are teachers and we must pay attention. Now, I can breathe and be grateful, for today. No matter what happens in the months to come. And I thank Poet Wendell Berry, for reminding us of the importance of the real world around us. For today.
The Peace of Wild Things
by Wendell Berry
“When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.”
from New Collected Poems (Counterpoint, 2012)
I hate telling you HCR that you have it wrong, but you have it wrong tonight, unfortunately.
Finland did not "opt" for neutrality in 1949. They were informed that if they chose otherwise, the USSR would finish what they accomplished in 1944, and Finland would cease to not only be independent but to exist. Finland has had to "choose" neutrality - buying a Western airplane for their air force followed by a Soviet airplane (and for all the rest of their armed forces) since then.
As to Wisconsin, last week the Republican leader of the State Senate said that if they won the State Senate seat tonight (which they did), which would give them a 2/3 majority, that Republicans would impeach judge Protasiewicz if she won, for her "transgressions" in her previous office. He stated that with a 2/3 majority in the senate they could convict her after the Republican majority in the lower house impeached her.
Anyone who thinks these scum wouldn't do it didn't notice what they did to the governor's powers after a Democrat won but before he took office. These scummy fascists won't stop until they have been "terminated... with extreme prejudice... "
Regarding the Trump Indictment, all I can do is send along Randy Rainbow's latest brilliant video. Sometimes the best thing to do is laugh! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ues8ycOxXKM
Thank you for relegating our former President to “other news” when there were more important things to celebrate.
Mark Barabak of the Los Angeles Times noted the “stark contrast between the humbled Trump facing justice Tuesday and the swaggering Trump—all toughness, cunning and hyper-masculinity—that he prefers to project.”
'Tis the voice of the Trumpster, I heard him declare
"You have sprayed me too orange: I must fluff up my hair."
As a rat with its whiskers, so he with his nose
Trims his tie & his buttons, & turns out his toes.
When he's barking or tweeting, he thinks it all sport,
And will talk in contemptuous tones of the court:
But, when when he's indicted, and the judge is around,
His voice has a timid & tremulous sound.
- With apologies to Lewis Carroll
Finland’s joining NATO is a remarkable historical ‘turnaround.’
Under the Molotov-Ribbentrop Pact of 1939 the Germans acquiesced to Stalinist Soviet Union’s invasion of Finland. The initial military attack was courageously resisted under legendary General Mannerheim. Eventually, because of the sheer number of Soviet troops, Finland was obliged to cede nearly 10% of its territory to the Soviets.
After WW II Finland was obliged to engage in delicate diplomacy with its rapacious Soviet neighbor. Then and after the collapse of the Soviet Union, the Finns continued to maintain this ‘delicate neutrality.’
Following Putin’s brutal invasion of Ukraine, Finland has made a dramatic commitment to join NATO in an anti-Russian volte face. I consider this in part a result of President Biden’s strong NATO/Western leadership in response to Putin’s megalomania.
Traditional neutral Sweden (who provided massive surreptitious aid to Finland during the 1940s invasion), also is seeking to join NATO, though Turkey’s Erdogan is, at least for the moment, blocking this.
Next, we in Wisconsin need to erase our fool in the Senate—Ron Johnson. Also, correct the criminal gerrymandering—in Wisconsin and across the nation. All votes should count.
There have been a few times in life when my face hurt from smiling so much. Yesterday was one of them. The suffering caused to so many women across this country, especially in red states, by the overturn of Roe has created a whirlwind that the party of Insurrection will be getting sandblasted by for years to come. And speaking of misogyny, the vultures have come home to roost all over "The Donald" and his criminal world.
What a massive freaking victory and RELIEF. This was the whole country teetering in the balance. Thanks millions to everyone who made it happen.
From The NY Times: Judge Janet Protasiewicz wins in Wisconsin by 10%.-----"Wisconsin voters on Tuesday chose to upend the political direction of their state by electing a liberal candidate to the State Supreme Court, flipping majority control from conservatives, according to The Associated Press. The result means that in the next year, the court is likely to reverse the state’s abortion ban and end the use of gerrymandered legislative maps drawn by Republicans...which have given Republicans all but unbreakable control of the state government."
Tonight's Letter rocks! Yay, Wisconsin! Yay, Finland!
In other news, April 4, 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated. Here is his mountaintop speech that he made on April 3, 1968.
"There were far more Trump opponents than supporters in the crowd outside the courthouse, and while Trump-allied representatives Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) and George Santos (R-NY) were there, other Republican lawmakers steered clear."
Margarine Taylor Greene and George Santos; the faces of today's Republican Party. Soon, adios to the both of them. The political pendulum is swinging back. The 2024 election could be, should be, a Republican bloodbath.
It’s so good to see three democracy positive stories today. The fight is far from over but it feels like the tide is turning in the right direction
Wisconsin's "Progressive win" is already threatened by the State GOP. Impeachment is already being planned. Disgusting. What happened to "one-person-one vote?" Judge Janet Protasiewicz was our only hope to fight against the worst gerrymandering in the Union. Now what?
Thank you Heather. Today was a good day. May there be many more ahead.
Happy 74th birthday NATO - and welcome Finland 🇫🇮 to the fold!
Congratulations Justice-elect Janet Protasiewicz and to the people of the great state of Wisconsin.
As to Ali Alexander’s prediction, “We just lost the Wisconsin Supreme Court. I do not see a path to 270 in 2024.” From your lips to God’s ears.
Thank you Tennessee representatives Gloria Johnson, Justin Jones, and Justin Pearson, and the 7,000 schoolchildren who marched to the Capitol yesterday to demand gun safety legislation.
As to Trump’s 34 felony counts of falsifying business records, may this and what’s coming cause him to reconsider his wicked ways - preferably from prison.
Without examining them it sounds like Trump’s crime once more demonstrates the brilliant insights of Hannah Arendt about the actual banality of evil.
Eichmann acting as a transportation commander converted rolling stock to killing machines.
To satisfy his racist/ religious cult the aspiring President bribed doormen and whomever for silence.
I think inch by inch we incrementally expose his banality and the evil will be apparent.