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Dear Putin

This is a photo taken during a recent protest in Berlin, in front of the Brandenburg Gate. The gate itself is showing the Ukrainian flag colors.

There is some irony here, since when he killed himself in a bunker, Hitler was the leader of Germany. But the ironic change is welcome.

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Blowback!

© Ruben Bolling

Vladimir Putin is being blasted by almost all of the countries of the world, including people in Russia. But here in the US there are a few (seemingly insane) people who are cheering Putin on in his invasion of Ukraine. And ironically, Joe Biden’s popularity ratings have jumped up 8% since his State-of-the-Union address, where he condemned Putin. Even Republicans think that Biden is doing a good job supporting Ukraine. That can’t be good news for Putin’s useful idiots in the US.

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This is the way the Pandemic ends

Not with a bang, but a whimper. SNL discusses the ultimate Covid questions.

Personally, I wish more people had worn masks and been fully vaccinated. Considering that around 6 million (and counting) people have died from Covid-19, it was obviously incumbent on us to do everything we could to combat it. After all, when 6 million people died from the Holocaust, we didn’t wonder afterward whether or not we should have fought the Nazis.

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Oh Shit!

Lauren Boebert is a Republican far-right congressperson from Colorado who loves Donald Trump, QAnon, conspiracy theories. She is famous for insulting people who hold religious beliefs different than hers, and she supported the rioters who stormed the US Capitol on January 6, 2021. She regularly carries a firearm to her workplace in the Capitol, and rails against gays, abortion, sex education, “critical race theory”, and immigration.

So how do you defeat someone like Boebert in the upcoming election? Alex Walker is running against her, and his advertising frankly fights fire with fire, in an attempt to put an end to her constant jetstream of bullshit.

Warning, definitely not safe for work!

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Russian Social Disinformation

Who knew that the latest arms race would center around social media disinformation?

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Fighting Discrimination?

© Jen Sorensen

Sometimes, you just can’t make this stuff up. Here is the first section of a model bill produced by the American Legislative Exchange Council.

  • 1) fossil fuels currently supply more than 80% of the world’s primary energy, and the U.S. Energy Information Administration still projects global consumption of fossil fuels to increase steadily at least through 2050;
  • 2) restricting the supply of fossil fuels, without an immediate substitute for those fuels, only serves to raise prices on energy consumers, profoundly impacting the poorest among us;
  • 3) denying financing to American and European fossil energy producers, who are among the most socially and environmentally responsible companies in the world, only serves to support hostile nations and less responsible producers;
  • 4) banks are increasingly denying financing to creditworthy fossil energy companies solely for the purpose of decarbonizing their lending portfolios and marketing their environmental credentials, to the detriment of potential returns for their shareholders;
  • 5) institutional investors are divesting from fossil energy companies and pressuring corporations to commit to the goal of the Paris Agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2050;
  • 6) large investment firms are colluding to force fossil energy companies to cannibalize their existing businesses and direct time and attention away from increasing shareholder returns;
  • 7) corporations are boycotting fossil energy companies by refusing to provide them with products or services; and
  • 8) it is in the social and financial interest of energy producing states to combat attacks on their key industries and employees.

Of course they are doing this to help the poor! And did you know that our fossil fuel companies, including oil companies whose tankers create massive spills, and gas companies that do fracking, “are among the most socially and environmentally responsible companies in the world”? Who knew?

These selfless companies need protection against discrimination! This must be why we already heavily subsidize them with tax breaks and other corporate welfare to the tune of around $20 billion per year.

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Monsters?

If I can post a comic comparing us to a Monty Python skit, surely we can be compared to a fictional parallel earth where they actually try to do the right thing.

© Tom Tomorrow

Although I will point out that Biden Prime did come through with free Covid test kits. Order yours now at https://www.covidtests.gov/

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At Least They Are Wearing Masks!

© Jason Adam Katzenstein

How many people recognized the source of this joke? With an updated caption to make it about the pandemic.

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Capitalism and Covid

I mean, what’s the point of a pandemic if you can’t make lots of money from it?

© Tom Tomorrow
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Happy New Year!

© Nick Anderson

At the end of last year, Los Angeles County released the following data:

  • Unvaccinated people in the county are 14 times more likely to die from COVID-19 than those that have been fully vaccinated.
  • The hospitalization rate for the unvaccinated has increased to 28 per 100,000 people, while for vaccinated people it has remained relatively flat at 1 per 100,000.
  • The percentage of all people (both vaxed and unvaxed) who have gotten tested and were positive is now 21%. But if you are vaccinated, the positive rate is only 2%.

And this doesn’t even take into account whether or not people wear masks.

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Dance of the Virus Proteins

This may not be humorous, but how ironic is someone doing an interpretive dance about their own PhD research on the proteins in SARS-CoV-2. This will make all you science nerds dance with joy!

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God’s Tech Support

This would be even more hilarious if it weren’t so true!

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Fauci Funnies

I’ve been waiting for something that makes me laugh out loud to post. And SNL provides the goods.

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Presidency with no Responsibility!

Mark Twain once proposed that human kings and queens should be replaced with feline monarchs. Cats are easy to worship and obey, but they don’t cause major problems like most human sovereigns.

Ironically, a couple of weeks ago, Jordan Klepper from The Daily Show went to a Donald Trump rally in Iowa. He interviewed quite a few of the attendees, and they seem to buy into a similar kind of leader. They believe that Trump is actually our president, but that he is singularly not responsible for anything bad that has happened to us. For example, the withdrawal from Afghanistan isn’t his fault, even though they believe that Trump is actually in power. Even worse, Trump was responsible for agreeing to remove all US troops from there, even though he didn’t actually do anything about it.

Who knows, maybe Trump is a cat. After all, he is orange!

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Cue the Gladiators!

This map has been making the rounds, showing the highest paid public employee in each state. And in 80% of the states, that employee, who is often pulling down multiple million dollars a year, is a football or basketball coach at a public university.

Now here’s the kicker. Just who is paying for the salaries of these coaches? If you’re reading this, it is probably you. It sure as heck isn’t the ultra-wealthy in this country.

Pro-Publica has obtained a trove of IRS data about the taxes paid by the richest people, who are able to severely reduce the taxes they pay using tax dodges that are available to virtually all of us. For example, the 25 most affluent paid an average 3.4% of their income in taxes. In many years, they paid nothing at all. How much did you pay?

Here’s a table showing the numbers for four of the most moneyed people:

Ironically, Warren Buffet’s true tax rate is only 0.1% of his income, even though he is a proponent of raising taxes on the rich. Compare that to what middle-class wage earners pay:

It’s a completely different picture for middle-class Americans, for example, wage earners in their early 40s who have amassed a typical amount of wealth for people their age. From 2014 to 2018, such households saw their net worth expand by about $65,000 after taxes on average, mostly due to the rise in value of their homes. But because the vast bulk of their earnings were salaries, their tax bills were almost as much, nearly $62,000, over that five-year period.

© Joel Pett
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