Theres a lot to like in a huge prehistorically-looking bird

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Photo by John Dean

For reasons beyond my limited understanding, a wood stork blocked my path one day in Bonita Springs, Florida. Late one afternoon, I turned the corner on one of our local nature trails and saw him standing there, staring at me. He wasn’t moving. And, worse yet, I was not sure exactly what type of bird it was. I was new to Bonita and its birds.

The Capitol siege may have irreparably damaged Trumpism; now it’s time to clean up the mess he’s leaving behind.

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Photo by Anton on Unsplash

Don’t give the “all clear” signal until Biden is sworn in and Trump returns his attention to golf. He may yet commit more sedition or other crimes before he leaves office. But, consistent with this, we cannot assume that the horrors witnessed yesterday in the Capitol were the last gasp of Trumpism. As promised by some of the hundreds of rioters themselves, the fight for the lost cause of Trumpism is not over.

America will continue to suffer the consequences of Trump for years to come unless the mess he created is cleaned up. That mess consists of fostering the growth of extremist terrorist groups, promoting distrust of mainstream media and truth, and weakening the credibility of the Constitution as the best means of institutionalizing democracy. …

The Brand is Dead

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Photo by Sergi Ferrete on Unsplash

The pending defeat of Trump, accompanied by the blue wave of Democratic majorities in the House and Senate, evidences the Republican party’s death. While parties have suffered severe losses in the past, this time it’s real. The party doesn’t stand for anything good anymore. There is nothing left to rebuild. Those nostalgic for the old GOP will find the current one is different. It is rotten, racist, short-sighted, and shrinking.

Why the GOP Won’t Come Back

Last summer’s remarkable Black Lives Matters protests prove that civil rights are not just for African Americans and other minorities. Large contingents of whites, people previously mostly absent from such movements, joined in, with passion. A national consensus that racism is systemic and destructive to our future emerged. …

Two Presidents Will be Elected on November 3 if Biden Wins

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Photo from

What is at stake in next month’s Presidential election? A lot, including the chance to select two Presidents at once. He has described himself as a “transition candidate.” In May, he did that referring to a promising future for Pete Buttigieg, but the comment could equally apply to his ultimate choice of a running mate.

Without his explicitly saying it, Biden is offering voters a two-for-one deal. Vote for him, and you get two Presidents, Biden and President-in-waiting Kamala Harris.

The Reality of Nominating a 77-Year-Old Nominee

Democrats have nominated a 77-year-old for President. That justifies taking a good look at Kamala Harris. If Biden wins the election, as polls continue to indicate, there is a high probability that Harris will be President, hopefully, later, but possibly sooner. …

All Respect for the Orange Menace Has Left the Building

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Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

Today anchor Savannah Guthrie repeatedly pounded President Trump during the hour-long NBC Town Hall Meeting on October 15. Among many zingers, she reminded the President that he was not somebody’s crazy uncle. She also called him a liar, responding to Trump’s claim that he did not know QAnon with “yes, you do.” When Trump said he couldn’t release his tax returns because he was under audit, Guthrie responded, “you’re not.”

Did Guthrie ambush Trump? Hardly. Today’s standard is for the media and the rest of us to dismiss Trump as a clown, buffoon, sociopath, liar, and narcissist. Even people that voted for him in 2016 distance themselves from him. “I voted for the policies,” one friend recently told me, embarrassed for what she had done. …

To heal, Trump must be held accountable and the whole story of January 6 needs to be told; next month’s Senate trial can help

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Photo by John Cameron on Unsplash modified by author

When the House moved promptly to impeach Donald Trump a second time, I confess to being confused. He had just seven days left in office. Another Senate trial would mean yet another step away from healing. The trial might create the risk of making Trump a martyr. I could imagine Lindsey Graham and others saying, “They were out to get him before he was elected, and now they are at it again even though he is about to leave office.”

Had I been in the House, I would have voted to impeach, but only after discouraging Speaker Pelosi from moving forward. …

The magic of a chance encounter with a large congregation made me wiser

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Photo by J. Dean

It’s easy to ignore ibises when you see hundreds of them each week. Here in southwest Florida, there are millions of these beautiful, curved-bill birds, with huge populations of them in the Everglades. Fortunately for me, some of them, it seems, seek me out. When I walk by them, they look up at me. When I have my camera, they pose. For that, I am thankful.

The right-wing, promise-breaking Republican attempts to bring a gun into the House chamber

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Photo by steve woods on Unsplash

Progressive Democrats do not like Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD), but does he need a gun to protect himself while on the Floor of the House of Representatives? Apparently, Harris has concluded that he does. On January 21, a mere 15 days after Trump supporters mounted an insurrection at the Capitol that left five people dead, Harris was caught by Capitol Police attempting to sneak one in.

According to press reports, Harris’ gun set off a metal detector as the Congressman attempted to enter the House Floor. Under a new rule established after January 6, all Members must walk through a metal detector when entering the House chamber. …

A “very generous” letter left on the Resolute Desk in the Oval Office

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Photo by the author

Here it is, Trump’s letter to President Biden. Did the ex-president turn a new leaf on his way out the door? Did Trump really write Biden a “very generous” letter? You be the judge:

Hey, Joe —

You didn’t get here fairly but I guess you got me. I’m not done yet, but for time being, my office is yours.

By now you may have already begun your work to set America backwards by inviting China to steal our jobs, let the country be overrun with brown rapists, and raising taxes. …

The portrait of the odious slave-owning, Indian-killing seventh jpresident is gone

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The embarrassment of the president of the United States greeting foreign dignities, and in at least one case, Native Americans, in front of a portrait of Andrew Jackson is over. President Biden has ordered the portrait removed from its place of honor. In its place is a portrait of the book-reading, science-loving patriot, Benjamin Franklin.

The contrast is significant. Trump was sending a message by both hanging the portrait and then staging multiple photographs in front of it. It was a big f*ck you to those he fancied his enemies. …


John Dean

Washington policy wonk, writer, blogger, and lover of nature, music, and Goldendoodles.

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