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Five Minutes with Feck News

The U.S. Midterms Matter in Ireland

Someone wag once commented on the Feck News Facebook page that I should change the name to Trump News, such is the amount of commentary/snide remarks I produce about Donald Twitler. There’s no doubt that the liar “when I can, I tell the truth” in the Oval Office is a clear and present danger to the United States, creating unparalleled levels of uncivil discourse and racist rabble-rousing.

Therefore, Tuesday 6th November is a big deal. Will a Democratic Party “Blue Wave” bring an erratic president to heel or will an emboldened Trump continue to inspire the rise of right-wing whackjobbery in countries such as our own here in Ireland? A successful Mid-term election cycle for Trump will only encourage the bigoted opportunists like Peter Casey to pursue a more toxic brand of politics in Ireland at a time when we’ve taken great strides towards becoming a beacon of multi-culturalism and equality in an increasingly nationalistic, isolationist world.

Which I why I believe it’s crucial that we continue to call out Trump for his beliefs and incessant lying, even on this side of the pond. What’s happening in the U.S. will happen here if we remain silent and deliberately oblivious to the malevolent maelstrom that is the Trump presidency.We cannot afford to sleepwalk into something similar.

Hypopprisy

Stupidity used to be classified as not being able to read, write or be able to solve basic math. Quite rightly, our understanding of learning difficulties has improved and, slowly but surely, every child (and adult) is getting the opportunity to develop with care and assistance.

Which is why stupidity may need a new home where it can lay its hat. Most of this can be found on the internet, primarily amongst the knuckle-dragging, “free-thinking” yahoos of the right-wing commentariat.  Whether it is deliberate trolling or just plain, caveman ignorance is up for debate. However, the many images online of Goebbels-goons proffering a Nazi salute whilst wearing a poppy really has me leaning towards the latter train of thought.

In a week where the dead of two catastrophic World Wars are commemorated for their sacrifice in (a) defeating Nazism and (b) a pointless war fought over the egos of ruling monarchies (think the 1% of today’s “elite”), the sight of thugs brandishing a poppy as a symbol of their hatred for those who are “not one of us” is despairing.

It is little comfort to think that these self-professed Defenders of Evrope (sic) would more than likely be shitting themselves in a trench or foxhole with the rest of us should their desire for the breakdown of global stability be achieved.

 

Paper Ballots FTW!

Say what you like about the parish-pump cronyism of the Irish political system, we do, at least, do one thing right. In an age when virtually anything with a micro-chip can be hacked or compromised with malicious intent, the archaic practice of using paper ballots in elections thankfully thrives in our country.

There is something invigorating and reassuring when entering an Irish polling booth to know that some tech-savvy gangster in St Petersburg cannot view or change the decision you have made. I can’t imagine what it must feel like to have that doubt, as so many Americans with electronic voting machines must have, whether the ballot they cast will be correctly counted or subverted to suit someone else’s agenda.

Given the Trump administration’s reluctance, or refusal, to fund protective measures to prevent outside interference in their electoral processes, it’s vitally important that any Democratic success this week results in taking steps towards transparency and fairness in future elections. Mind you, it would also help if young voters would exercise this basic freedom they have and vote out or against those corrupted Republicans hell-bent on voter suppression and gerrymandering in many states. Gotta start somewhere.

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