I Hope This Is A Silly Conspiracy Theory…

A daily email I receive combines several stories from a variety of sources. A recent one included a really terrifying–and not entirely implausible–assertion. The letter detailed the hundreds of holds that Senator Tuberville has placed on military appointments, and went on to point out that Rand Paul has been blocking Ambassadors and other State Department nominees, that J.D. Vance is blocking appointees to the Department of Justice, and Josh Hawley is similarly blocking Army civilian appointments.

The item concluded with “They’re keeping the roles open for Trump. The next coup is already underway.”

Now, I have to believe that this is a wild surmise–that the anti-American buffoonery of these MAGA culture warriors is simply more evidence of GOP idiocy and dysfunction.

But I will admit that reading the list and assertion made shivers run down my spine.

I’d been aware of Tuberville’s holds. Anyone who reads the news has seen stories about the damage his intransigence continues to do to America’s military readiness. But I have assumed that Tuberville’s obvious stupidity and deep investment in culture war rhetoric explained it. (You will recall that, just after being elected to the U.S. Senate, Tuberville –whose past experience was as a college football coach–was unable to identify the three branches of government.)

I hadn’t been aware of the other machinations to block government activity, so I did some checking. According to CBS News, Rand Paul has announced his intent to block all State Department nominees until the Biden administration releases documents related to the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

 Secretary of State Antony Blinken urged the Senate to “swiftly” confirm more than 60 nominees to key foreign policy positions, warning in a letter sent to all senators Monday that leaving the roles unfilled was damaging to America’s global standing and national security interests.

“Vacant posts have a long-term negative impact on U.S. national security, including our ability to reassure Allies and partners, and counter diplomatic efforts by our adversaries,” Blinken wrote, according to a copy of the letter obtained by CBS News. “The United States needs to be present, leading, and engaging worldwide with our democratic values at the forefront.”

There are currently 62 nominees awaiting confirmation in the Senate, of which 38 are for ambassadorial roles across multiple continents. Of those, “several” have been pending for more than 18 months, a State Department official said.

Rolling Stone has reported that J.D. Vance has been handing out “wokeness” questionnaires to State Department nominees whose Senate confirmations he’s placed on hold.

Vance claimed that the point of the surveys was to establish if any of the nominees had “radical” viewpoints that would cloud their treatment of foreign policy. “If you are injecting your own personal politics in a way that harms American national security and diplomacy, that’s not fine,” Vance told Politico. “The questions all try to get at those issues.”

Politico has confirmed that odious Senator Josh Hawley has been at this for quite a while–he caused chaos in 2021 by blocking  confirmation of several State Department nominees, in a continuation of what Politico characterized then as “the unprecedented GOP-led campaign to slow-walk most of President Joe Biden’s picks for top foreign policy posts.”

Hawley apparently continues to play the blackmail game; in January of this year, Defense News reported

The Senate is on track to confirm many of President Joe Biden’s seven remaining Pentagon nominees after Democrats reached an agreement with Sen. Josh Hawley, R-Mo., to break his yearlong logjam on Defense Department confirmations in the last Congress.

And just this October, a month ago, according to a publication of the American Legion, Hawley announced that he would put a hold on Army civilian nominations until the service earmarks $41 million for new housing at Fort Leonard Wood.

After doing the above-reported, fairly superficial research (i.e. asking Dr. Google), I’ve concluded that these self-important characters are probably not capable of co-ordinating and conducting a coup. That doesn’t mean that their tantrums aren’t doing a considerable amount of damage. 

“I won’t do my job until you give me what I want” isn’t a particularly attractive way to conduct Senate business, but then, the Republicans in the House and Senate are–to put it kindly–immature and self-promoting. Forget putting country above party–these pompous jerks won’t put country above self.

When We The People wonder why the federal government isn’t functioning well, I think we have a significant part of the answer.


  1. I just went to see the movie “Napoleon.” Don’t bother.

    It did clear up in my mind the part of French history from the first revolution, sort of like ours but a few years later in 1789, and the beginning of the actual achievement of Liberté, egalité, fraternité following Napolean’s defeat at Waterloo in 1815.

    Other than that, it was a recreation of wars even more horrible than ours today in sheer brutality and suffering. Endless suffering by the poor caused by the class struggles that still exist today brought to us by the very few with naked ambitions for power and the degree to which unholy alliances between those whose egos must be served and those who benefit from not restraining them exist.

    Think Trump and today’s Republican caucuses, now contained in Congress. Think Putin. Unfortunately, Netanyahu also.

    Let me conclude that I believe all humans are equal and, to quote a Beatle:

    “Imagine there’s no heaven
    It’s easy if you try
    No hell below us
    Above us, only sky
    Imagine all the people
    Livin’ for today”

    “Imagine there’s no countries
    It isn’t hard to do
    Nothing to kill or die for
    And no religion, too
    Imagine all the people
    Livin’ life in peace

    “You may say I’m a dreamer
    But I’m not the only one
    I hope someday you’ll join us
    And the world will be as one”

    “Imagine no possessions
    I wonder if you can
    No need for greed or hunger
    A brotherhood of man
    Imagine all the people
    Sharing all the world”

    You may say I’m a dreamer, but not the only one. We have an actual solution. The United States has had an operational liberal democracy since 1789.

    It’s being challenged here and now, again and again, time after time.

  2. One advantage that MAGA has over more traditional politicians in positions of leadership is that they are not hindered by good faith or following rules or precedent. Traditional leaders assume that everyone will agree to abide by those rules and traditions, but as the examples listed in today’s post show, they are not. Or, more precisely, they will use the rules to subvert the process until they gain power. Mitch McConnell is the perfect example of one who “follows the rule but not the spirit”.
    Watch what happens to the rules when MAGA regains power. The tactics being used now to subvert the process will be tossed out like last nights pizza box.
    C. Wright Mills has stated that people in power will do whatever it takes to remain in power. It is time that Democrats begin following the MAGA lead and start working the rules to stop MAGA, no matter what.

  3. I’ve suspected for some time now—and vocalized said suspicion to anyone who will listen—that Tuberville was holding up the top military appointments until next year, “when” (IF, please god!!!) TFG retakes the presidency, so that loyalists will be appointed to those top positions and then he will own the military. To learn that slime-trailers Paul, Vance, and Hawley are in on the act gives me not only shivers, but also palpitations. Like Vernon often says, I’m glad I’m old. But my daughter and son-in-law and their children are not, and I fear for their future.
    I’ve said this before: I don’t recognize my country anymore.

  4. Imagine… Mike Flynn as Sec. Defense. Imagine… Steve Bannon as vice-President. Imagine… Stephen Miller as Sec. Homeland Security. Imagine the sewer rat Hawley as Sec. of State.

    Conspiracies? Right now they are, but if our citizens don’t vote ALL these monstrosities out of government, we will get what we deserve and the world of humanity will be in deep trouble.

    I spoke with a Canadian friend of mine yesterday and she pointed out that Canadians are terrified about what’s going on down here. They see their future democracy in danger too… Why? All because of the tyrant-in-waiting and his gang of wannabe Nazis.

    Well done, Republican voters. YOU put them there. Why? Because Republican voters are so brain-dead and susceptible to con games and culture wars that they forget about our Constitution, and the other 65% of the population. Those voters will NOT change their affiliation for any reason even if the nation’s Constitution is at stake. So, EVERYONE else with a brain has to vote to offset that culture idiocy.

  5. It’s as if Trump is operating a shadow government and has been doing so since Biden took office.

  6. Vernon, if the dopes Sheila mentioned don’t do as they’re told, they will be replaced by even more MAGA superstar wannabes in the waiting.

    Finally, voters sense the power of voting for their favorite MAGA superstar. They can vote for Tuberville and get results. MAGA leaders can point to the dysfunction as a sign the government is broken by wokeness, etc., etc., etc.

    And despite the falling poll numbers, the Democratic Party insists on running Joe against TFG with strong Independent and Green Party candidates. Talk about conspiracies — the DNC seems to play right into the hands of MAGA, time and time again.

    I’m not sure when the grown-ups will enter the room, but idiots are running Washington. Blinken is the only adult, and that poor man is so full of hypocrisy, he’s aged 10 years in the past 3. Watching his facial expressions when Biden talks has been priceless. When Joe called Xi a dictator, I thought Blinken would pass out in his chair. Lol

  7. So what I am reading is that a handful of elected officials are holding our government hostage.
    Everyone of them needs to be ousted.

  8. I’ve been reading “The Future is History – How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia” by Maria Gessen. The methods used to achieve that reclamation so closely parallel what the wrong wing has been doing in the U.S. that it is clear that the same authors have been writing both playbooks.
    It has succeeded in Russia largely due to that country’s long history of authoritarian rule and lack of protections such as freedom of the press and expression, a strong constitution, an independent judiciary, protection of legitimate elections, etc.
    I do not think those methods will be successful in the end here in the U.S., but they are certainly tearing at the fabric of our government, costing some people’s lives, and have destroyed the Republican Party.
    It is a cautionary tale and I recommend reading it.

  9. Apparently the MAGA lineup Sheila identified today (with the addition of Cruz) have by Senate rule determined to throw a monkey wrench into the constitutional doctrine of Separation of Powers. The unstated idea of these jerks is, among other things, to set the stage for Biden’s failures in military and foreign policy arenas – never mind that as the leading “free world” nation we are projecting Trump’s 1/6 adventure in his violent attempt to trash our Constitution and overthrow the government in the process (see Argentina).

    “Holds” by Senate rule should be abolished. Why should a football coach determine our military readiness? The president via the Constitution is the commander in chief of the military, not some jerk who doesn’t know the three branches of government and the Ivy League senators who know better but have decided to join Trump in the destruction of our democracy’s underlying institutions for perceived political advantage (and ego inflation).

    Yes, the Senate can make its own rules, but such rules should not be in derogation of the initiatives given the executive branch by the Constitution. On the other hand, if Trump (who openly states that he want to destroy the Constitution) is to be president again, you can bet
    that current Republican attempts to destroy Biden will evaporate with our certain descent into Achtung! time. Gestapo, anyone?

  10. Good grief another depressing post about the Minority party doing more damage to our government and country. It’s really getting to the point that I just want to shut down and stop reading and being informed. The problem here is that we’re all a little sick of this Sh*t and I hope that the doors are broken down on Election Day with Liberals and Independents so that we can rid ourselves of these monsters! 45, McConnell and his ilk need to go. I’m hoping for another landslide victory for our side because our future depends on it. And in August 2026, I want to collect my social security because I deserve it and paid into it and if these mfers keep me from getting it, I’m going to scream so loud, even you’ll here it over there.

  11. We should know by now that we can only expect silliness and dangerous threats from the entire sitting Republican party; we cannot exclude those who sit mute an idle for they are a major danger to our future. Hope for the best but expect the worst is now our clarion call to arms.

  12. This is real and not accidental. The press thinks it’s boring. The “people” are so civic-dumb that they wouldn’t understand it. Smacks at a strategic level of Mr. Bannon. Biden is too busy being Mr. Diplomat as a “World Leader”. God help us.

  13. Does anybody really think that a MAGA-controlled Senate would respect any individual Democratic senator’s arbitrary “hold”, for even one minute, on ramrodding Trump’s handpicked minions into top military, diplomatic, and law-enforcement positions so that he can use them to exact his openly announced goals of “retribution” and “ending the Constitution”?

    The Democratic Party’s habitual timid politesse is suicidal when dealing with fascists who are openly quoting and emulating Hitler.

  14. 2025 is already underway. leo,and koch,all the way back to powel. its been who can last the longest. (the rich have the resources) if there was a mccarthy commission today it would probably be against democracy.
    we didnt learn enough after 1980 the road bent right and we just we about our merry way ignoring a fester. entertained to death,yep, except its social media and its whispers of the end.
    if there should be a rising wave of resentment,it should be focused on the wealth,stolen wages and stolen dreams. the fanfare of triumph of the masses sit in a silo buried under the penthouse tower that when flushed,is what were all clinging onto. eat the rich. its all the monied factions move to become your next goverment. after what dimomd said about haley for pres, its become obvious, there is no democracy with any goverment they will form,only a table of dictators bent on forming a bank/corprate monger state with religious lines. and we thought the muslim/sharia
    faith was outta line.. we have obviously havent spoken directly enough, those in congress who are setting back a administrations goals by deny the movement to run a lawful goverment,is deliberatly denying democracy. i cant see how any move like this is nothing more than the election process being undermined by a jan 6 like insurrection. this is nothing more than another insurrection. . if the maggats can call black ,white,then we can call it as it is..good focus here,the question wasnt tuberville,it is a group of maggots who were voted by a commercial/social news media that has been useless for 40 years..

  15. There are lots of young people that seem to believe George Carlin’s skit about how everything has already been bought and sold so why vote? However, IF voting DOES count then they are doing a disservice by not voting.
    Even though I tend to agree with Carlin I still vote anyway JUST IN CASE it DOES.

    I don’t understand why we have so many immature people in politics that just try to bully and threaten everyone. Then they throw tantrums and turn it all into a circus and of course they are never accountable. It’s never their fault.

  16. Yes, Vernon, it is the “brain -dead” Republicans who elected these bozos, which supports the idea that TFG had, at minimum, enough brain power functioning, years ago, when he claimed that if he were to run for POTUS, it would be as a Republican, because “…they are so stupid.”
    Is this a coordinated effort? Are these fools “working” for, or, as so many Nazis said “toward” what they see as what TFG wants?
    In any case, we must vote these fools into the garbage can of history.

  17. Ghe problem we face eith this country isn’t one party being beterr tgan thebother, its the ovrrsll loss of good moral principles. We have too many people hoping against God instead of people being sinful and selfish cewatures.
    Remember when we propped up the economy with $10 trillion over eight years through Obama. It was called quantitative easing. It was the most sinful disgusting thing that leaders could’ve ever done to our kids is to increase the national debt by such a huge number after being critical of a previous president for increasing the debt by $3 trillion over eight years. Now we have a president who has increased the national debt $4 trillion in a year three years and continues to prop up the economy. The black community is now waking up to the fact that, our presidents that are allowing these expenditures and saying the Buckstop here well they should step aside and allow people who have moral constraints against our huge national debt that is costing us $1 trillion a year. There’s one simple verse in the Bible. It says oh no man nothing. We should be paying off our debts on a yearly basis and have a balance budget. no scandal here just pure sin.

  18. Even a blind man can see it. Whether inspired by foreign or domestic sources. No foreign influence could do our county more damage than the Russian and Chinese interference in the 2916 election. Nor Trump behavior in and out of office. The deliberate weakening by the fascists of every segment of organized government and society. Of course it could be just a coincidence. (Just like the woman who as a Chinese national caught at Mar Largo by the Secret Service with gear capable of copying documents. Anyone recall that?) The media is so focused on sensationalizing the news each day. That it ignores the big picture. And then there is total disconnect of the electorate. My community is saddled with a newly elected city government.Who won because they were Rs. The Mayor won by only 11 votes out of a 36% turnout. Four years resulting from party rather than competence. By someone for whom only 18% of registered voters. We have not had a President in 1964 that received more than 50% of the registered voters support. And two elections where the presidential candidates who won lost the popular vote….2000 and 2016. Conspiracy? I would not be surprised. But it does not much of a coincidence to subvert WE THE PEOPLE when the people abdicate their right to govern.

  19. So, Rand Paul wants to block all State Department nominees until the Biden administration releases documents related to the origin of the COVID-19 pandemic. This type of action is the reason why so many people got sick or died from Covid. Rather than doing something to prevent the pandemic catastrophe, Trump and his moron henchmen were only interested in minimizing the danger of the pandemic and finding someone to blame. Very typical of how the GOP governs.
    Do something or Blame someone! Hmm… decisions… decisions!

  20. I see politicians on both sides, just stick their finger in the eye of the other party. I want to initially desire just because they can. I’m not sure if I agree with Tubberville on this one, but Democrats cause many problems with the resolutions also.

  21. Per Mark Zuckerberg…”move fast and break things”. That is so COOL…now MAGA has adopted this for destroying democracy..

  22. These MAGA culture warriors are dead serious. The $64,000 question is: what are we going to do about it? I wish I had a viable answer.

  23. Apologists. Why do we assume that politicians are stupid, misguided or ego driven? Or, that every politician does it? What if we assume until proven otherwise that they want to damage our institutions—the courts, our military, State Department, etc? By doing so, hamper the ability for government to function and weaken democracy.

  24. Again – I see this as the end of a long road – many times over the years I have heard people say that they want Congress to “do nothing”, because all “government” causes problems (the government is the problem, not the solution predates Reagan) – It was an argument used by Republicans in the past to encourage “divided government”, least the Democrats pass socially progressive programs.

    I agree with the proposition that “holds” and the filibuster should be abolished, because they assume some sort of maturity that has clearly been lacking in our politics for a long time.

  25. Shiela Kennedy,
    Did you see the opinion piece by Robert Kagen in today’s Washington Post? Even scarier than some of the things you have been writing about.

    We have to win in 24 or we are doomed.

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