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Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott

Photo by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (Public domain)

WARNING: A mutant coronavirus named Gubernatorious Imbecilious is spreading across the country, threatening to become pandemic.

Originating earlier this year in the Texas governor's office — infamously known as the "Laboratory of Bad Government" — the brain-eating virus escaped, is now drifting unchecked on the political winds and has already infected governors in Florida, Idaho, Iowa, Nebraska, and South Dakota.

An early indicator that your governor, too, might be coming down with Gubernatorious Imbecilious is if he or she begins ranting paranoiacally that the mighty U.S. of A is being "invaded." Yes, invaded by masses of migrants from Mexico, Central America, and hell itself — all intent on rape, murder, drug peddling, mayhem, and ultimately the usurpation of our nation.

Having such a delusional governor is embarrassing, but the disease turns downright scary when infected governors try acting on their paranoia. Gov. Greg Abbott, for example, the GOP governor of Texas, is the one who conjured up this current invasion fantasy and is causing it to go viral in Republican statehouses. Abbott is a frantic Chicken Little, squawking that "a tidal wave" of amnesty seekers crossing our southern border are "causing farmers to lose their crops ... homes are being invaded ... neighborhoods are dangerous ... people are being threatened."

So, by gollies, Greg is taking action! On our dime, of course. His big plan? Build a wall! Yes, obviously demented by an advanced case of Gubernatorious Imbecilious , the extent of Abbott's creativity is an insane repeat of Donnie Trump's failed boondoggle of a border wall. To fund his goofy political gambit, the governor has expropriated $250 million from the state's meager budget to "secure our border." Apparently, no one has told the governor that $250 million would build less than 10 miles of wall on our 1,200-mile border with Mexico ... and won't keep anyone from crossing.

But failure seems to be built into Abbott's DNA. He oversees a state power grid so feeble that it failed in February, killing more than 150 Texans; he has left five million of our people without health coverage, more than any other state; and he presides over a crumbling state infrastructure network that can't score better than a D grade.

Did I mention that Abbott wants to run for president? Not of the Insane Governors Club, but of America! Seriously.

It's one thing to strive for herd immunity to defeat a coronavirus, but in politics, the herd instinct can send a whole species over a cliff.

That seems to be happening among the frenzied herd of Republican governors now stampeding behind the scaremongering scheme of Abbott to use the personal suffering of Latin American migrants and asylum seekers as a political pawn. Rather than helping find a humane solution, the GOP hierarchy is exploiting the very real plight of desperate Latin American people to pose as strong defenders of U.S. communities that are in absolutely no danger from the migration.

Yes, various governors are following Abbott's knee-jerk vindictiveness, confronting the migrating families with "Keep Out" military-style force. First came Florida's ruthlessly ambitious governor, Ron DeSantis, strutting around in a mucho macho photo-op, pledging to send a small hodgepodge of deputies, highway patrol, and even wildlife officials (!) to Texas for a few days to help Abbott keep out immigrants. What will these armed officials do? Who will direct them? Who would pay? Uh ... DeSantis didn't know.

Then came Cornhusker State Gov. Pete Ricketts, proclaiming that "Nebraska is stepping up to help Texas respond to the ongoing crisis on their border." But local public officials who are actually on the Texas border say there is a problem, not a crisis — and helter-skelter squads of clueless gendarmes from afar won't help. Still, the hyper-partisan governor of Iowa, Kim Reynolds, said she was sending a few state troopers to the distant border to defend "the health and safety of Iowans." Interestingly, she had refused a request this spring by the Biden administration to help house migrant children crossing our border to seek asylum, coldly declaring, "This is not our problem."

South Dakota's Kristi Noem also piled on, dispatching some of her state's National Guard troops to Texas. Oddly, though, Noem's troops were not sent as true agents of the state, but as 25 political mercenaries, paid an undisclosed amount by an out-of-state right-wing billionaire to join in the GOP governors' border stunt.

Note that (1) all of these political posers committed so few border defenders for such a short time that their presence would have zero impact on our border crossings; and (2) none of the governors offered any insight, solution, or concern about the root causes of the migration.

To monitor the posturing of these shameful frauds, go to NoBorderWallCoalition.com.

To find out more about Jim Hightower and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators webpage at www.creators.com.

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Jeff Danziger lives in New York City. He is represented by CWS Syndicate and the Washington Post Writers Group. He is the recipient of the Herblock Prize and the Thomas Nast (Landau) Prize. He served in the US Army in Vietnam and was awarded the Bronze Star and the Air Medal. He has published eleven books of cartoons and one novel. Visit him at DanzigerCartoons.

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