I really hesitated posting anything. The news from Kentucky just keeps getting worse. Senator McConnell will most likely retain his seat (once again I have NEVER voted for him) although his ads are full of lies. Our other senator says he has a medical degree; however, I really want to see his credentials after some of the remarks he has made about COVID. Now we have an officer suing Breonna Taylor's (say her name) boyfriend over standing his ground, legal in this state by the way. And this morning in my local paper, it seems that up to 2013, the training manuals for the Kentucky State Police contained quotes from Hitler. My head hurts. But here's the thing. Yes, 45 and Mitch and their ilk will try to game the system, but I think that many citizens have been awaken to them. I see young people like my college-age granddaughter in the streets demanding change. And, by the way, it was two young men who exposed the training manual of the state police through documents obtained through the Open Records Act. And before you jump on Kentucky, you may want to take a look at the training manuals of your own police forces. Are they encouraged to be guardians of the people or warriors fighting against the people? I see an upswing in voting. And as much I am tired of lockdowns and self quarantine, I have to admit it has been good for me. I have had to slow down, read more, think more, and do a lot of self- examination about my part in what is happening. And I really don't like to admit that I have been complacent and most of the time wringing my hands over how terrible it all is. No more. I am in the process of finding ways to be more involved. I have found two social justice groups that align with my faith (moderate to liberal) that have platforms I believe in economically and politically (again moderate to liberal). This old white woman refuses to let a few old white men destroy this country. And I thank Dr Richardson for helping to raise my awareness.

Expand full comment

I have been so lucky to live in a free and prosperous country for so long—I still have trouble wrapping my mind around the fact that so many people could be complicit in the greedy, power-grabbing, inhumane behavior that this administration and the Republican leadership have demonstrated and perpetrated on their people. It happens in so many other countries around the world. I would read about it, feel a sadness for those people far away, and then move on. Now, people in other countries feel a sadness for us.

I’m preparing to read Nick Kristof’s column about relationships hurt by this divide. I think I am letting an old dear friend go, and it doesn’t feel like a choice as much as a necessity, and it’s very sad. But not as sad as children being taken from their parents and never reunited. Not as sad as children being sent back over the border without an adult to care for them!! Not as sad as democracy being ripped apart, shred by shred.

I wish Mitch McConnell could have been removed from office for refusing to hold hearings on President Obama’s judge and justice nominations. He is out of control. He belongs in the bin with the wax Donald.

Expand full comment

“We’re going to run through the tape. We go through the end of the year, and so does the President,” he said. “We’re going to fill the 7th Circuit. And I’m hoping we have time to fill the 1st Circuit as well.” “We’re going to clean the plate, clean all the district judges off as well,” he told Hewitt.

So, Mitch, are ya gonna start shooting existing judges, so that you can fill their seats, too? My God! I suppose we should be enured to these outrages by now, and I confess to a certain level of 'outrage fatigue', but this one takes the cake.

As I read through the list of outrages Heather listed just in today's letter, I wondered for the umpteenth time, "what will it take?" Is there any crime this man can commit, any evil he can perpetrate, that will get SOMEBODY with some level of authority, to reel him in? We tried the legal, sanctioned impeachment route, and Mitch shot that down with every Republican senator except Mitt blindly following his marching orders.

I suppose it's fitting that it's Halloween, because I've never been more terrified for the future in my life.

Expand full comment


A ‘blue moon’ will grace the skies today - it is the second full moon of this calendar month. Of ccourse it is an omen that celestial energies are aligning for a blue wave among us mortals

Expand full comment

I’m saving this article for posterity. Even though I follow each day’s events, your synopsis of the last 24 hours—all in one place, item after item—still comes as a shock.

Hopefully, voter turnout will continue at a brisk pace, and in a few days we can collectively throw the current president into Mme Tussaud’s dumpster.

Masks on, everyone—let’s DO THIS!

Expand full comment

"Never before in our history has a candidate openly planned to win an election by gaming the system, but here we are."

That's because Trump isn't running for re-election as much as he's running to stay out of jail.

"Doctors get paid more if the cause of death is listed as Covid."

Are we perhaps finally getting a hint of Trump's "better and cheaper" healthcare plan, containing a "Cause of Death" rate chart? Death by hangnail pays the most.

“They had things, levels of voting that if you’d ever agreed to it, you’d never have a Republican elected in this country again.”

One of the three times in the last four+ years when Trump spoke the truth. (I can't recall the other two.) The last thing any Republican wants to encourage is a free, fair, honest election; not for president or dog catcher.

Find a way to smile every day. The harder that is to do, the more important it is that you do it.

Expand full comment

Despite the whole fallacy of MAGA because America was not great for everyone in most of my lifetime, nor my parents’ lifetime, at least things were simpler for white folks when I came of age in 1963. It was U.S. against the Soviet Union and I joined the Air Force to fight the cold war & avoid the real war in Vietnam. The military was integrated as was most of the U.S. outside of the backward South. However, since high school I have learned that we are not a Democracy. The Electoral College has at least twice put an UNPOPULAR president in office and threatens to destroy the nation by doing it again. I have learned that we are an Oligarchy ruled by the obscenely rich, who buy our elected government and feeds lies to our naive & ignorant citizens.

I have also learned that not only has “Equal Justice Under the Law” inscribed on the Supreme Court building always been a blatant lie but since this presidency no one has even attempted to enforce the laws routinely broken by the president & his Repugnant enablers. The Emoluments clause, the Hatch Act, the CFR have all been openly violated with no consequences. (Yes, selling a brand of beans from the Oval Office is not legal). And now, not content with ignoring Federal laws, he is having an unauthorized late nite rally in Miami-Dade County that will violate our curfew and as usual our mask ordinance. There is no comment from Mayor Carlos Giménez a Repugnant Sucophant. Chaos seems to be the New Normal.

Expand full comment

The news continues to pummel us daily. I truly appreciate your thoughtful synopsis each day. Today, your last paragraph brought a huge dose of sunshine to my day. I hope we see many more such actions in the coming months. I'd like to see a calendar for 2022 with photos of Trumps's daily life in prison.

Expand full comment

This essay from Professor Richardson is a a sublime model of how to update and capture the swirl of presidential election flimflammery succinctly and with right-on touches of clarifying observations. That she has delivered these daily reports on the underbelly of the traveling circus with an excess of clowns that is the Trump campaign, and his administration on the whole, is a marvel of service to those many Americans who cherish facts and morality and charity and all the traditional virtues that mark leaders as leaders. Her commitment to all of us is edifying to the nth degree. God bless her.

Expand full comment

Heather thanks for the recap of another day this Administration has whitewashed this Nation with sewage. It is tiring that this new normal of bullshit from every angle of this Administration rains down on us every single day. The COVID-19 numbers are beyond appalling. My area is spiking beyond the figures when it was at it worse. I watched our local PBS show this evening with Academics of local Universities who all thought Biden SHOULD win, but Trump WILL game the system by directing this election into the hands of HIS Supreme Court. They made no bones about the fact that this is Trumps Supreme Court and not of the People. It was by far one of the most scathing panels made up of both Democrats and Republicans and not one supported Trump. Trump has painted his world to his liking and he does know how to work the system. Like it or not, he has worked the con all of his life. I am not going to let this election rule my head, Trump isn't allowed in. I give him a daily glance and that's more than he deserves. Life really isn't fair, and shit happens. Everyone just breath, stay safe, stay well and wear that god damn mask 😷. Remember, the tide clears the beach and new shells appear everyday. Someday, this will all go away. This image keeps me sane these days.

Expand full comment

You saved the best for last! Into the dumpster!!! Thank you, Dr. Richardson!

Expand full comment

Into the trash? Way to go, Madame Tussaud!

Expand full comment

I have to say it NOW . . .

Whatever the outcome, thank you !

I could not have made it this far along, with my sanity intact, without having been introduced to you by Ani DiFranco, over 6 months ago.

Thank you, and I LOVE YOU . . .

I’m not in love with you, but I am so grateful for your almost SUPER-HUMAN efforts to compile information, and inform a public that actually cares about this country, its history, and it’s F U T U R E . . .

I have VOTED, (what else can I do?), and I remain hopeful for the people of the UNITED STATES of AMERICA, and all the rest of the population of this planet.

While I sense how modest you are, regardless of the outcome, this Tuesday, next Tuesday, or Tuesday, December 1, (who knows when?), but eventually, sooner, rather than later . . .

You are deserving of great praise ! ! !





Expand full comment

Morning, All! Dr. R's opening paragraph reminding us of the Electoral College determining who our next president will be distracted me from the rest of this excellent letter. So my question is: If Biden has a landslide victory -- (how big is landslide?) -- in a majority of the non-swing states, will we still be forced to settle for an EC selection of 45? Also, my understanding is even if there's a landslide popular vote for Biden in any swing state, the EC can still override that result in favor of 45. True?

Expand full comment

Alexander Hamilton said that the main purpose of the Electoral College was to make sure that no agent of a foreign government would ever become president. He wrote in Federalist, no. 68, that America was so spread out [When he wrote this, there were only 13 colonies.], it would be difficult for most citizens /voters to get to know a presidential candidate well enough to spot a spy or traitor. But the electors---having no other governmental duty, obligation, or responsibility---would catch one.

Hamilton wrote, "The most deadly adversaries" of America would probably "Make their approaches [to seize control of the United States] from more than one quarter, but chiefly from the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils." He also wrote, "How could they better gratify this, than by raising a creature of their own to the chief magistracy [president] of the Union." He wrote the framers of the Constitution "have guarded against all danger of this sort, with the most provident and judicious attention."

The choice of president would not "depend on any preexisting bodies of men who might be tampered with beforehand to prostitute their votes." The Electoral College would be made up of "persons [selected] for the sole purpose of making the appointment," he wrote, "And they have excluded from eligibility to this trust, all those who from situation might be suspected of too great devotion to the President in office. No senator, representative, or other person holding a place of trust or profit under the United States, can be of the numbers of the electors."

"The process of election [by the Electoral College] affords a moral certainty that the office of President will never fall to the lot of any man who is not in an eminent degree endowed with the requisite qualifications," so wrote Hamilton.

I am certain that, especially in the elections of George W. Bush and Donald J. Trump, that Hamilton's body, or what's left of it, has rolled over in his grave at least a million times.

We can only hope that Biden wins in a land slide and takes Texas, Arizona, Pennsylvania, Florida, Michigan and Wisconsin to boot so that Trump will not be able to the nasty deeds of his intention.

N.B., Much of the above is from the new book by Thom Hartmann, which is entitled, "The Hidden History of The War On Voting: Who Stole Your Vote---And How To Get It Back."

Expand full comment

Wow! A comprehensive and disturbing compendium. Thank you Heather. This review really raises for me one question that is not being addressed anywhere that I can find. Who, behind Trump, is driving this evil machine? Nationwide there is too much going on, and it is too coordinated and executed, to be from this narcissistic dope and the incompetent White House. The Koch brothers? The Federalist Society? Dark money from who? The wave of lawsuits, and the executive orders and changes to departmental regulations throughout the federal bureaucracy, are I think beyond the imagination and mental capacity of Trump to dictate or even imagine. Yet, they are ongoing. And I don’t think it will end when he’s gone. The fights will move to the courts, packed with Trump appointees, to maintain what he has achieved. And Moscow Mitch announced yesterday he will keep filling judge vacancies in November and December after the election even if they all lose and must leave in January. What are your thoughts on where the real power emanates from?

Expand full comment