Democracy Has Prevailed.

October 31, 2022

Doug Mastriano Is Lying To You. Again. This Time on Fox "News"

October 29, 2022 Fox "News" gave St Sen (and GOP cand. for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano a platform to say this that and the other bits of Mastriano-speak.

One of those things was this:

After all, [PA AG Josh Shapiro] is the same man who took Catholic nuns to court to force them to defy their religious convictions.  

And with that Doug Mastriano lied to all those viewers on Fox "News" - not that they'd do the work to see it, however.

It is Fox "News" we're talking about here. Home of Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson.

That charge about Shapiro and the nuns actually scored a three on the Washington Post Pinocchio test. 

Basically because Doug said Josh took the nuns to court and the reality is this:

“Pennsylvania did not sue the Little Sisters,” said Douglas Laycock, a University of Virginia law professor and leading authority on the law of religious liberty. Shapiro “sued the federal government, and the Little Sisters intervened.”

The Post's analysis:

The fact remains: The nuns sued to join a case that was aimed at the federal government; Shapiro did not sue the nuns. Mastriano is falsely claiming otherwise. Given that the Little Sisters ended up as a litigant, we can’t quite say this is worthy of Four Pinocchios. But Mastriano earns Three. [Emphasis added.]

Doug Mastriano is lying.

And then there's this:

On day one, I will restore common sense to our education system by banning the Critical Race and Gender Theory Studies in Pennsylvania schools.

There's only one problem with this plan:

The Pennsylvania Department of Education says critical race theory is not being taught in public schools. 


Critical Race Theory is not part of or taught in any state required curriculum. Equity, inclusion, and belonging in education helps create spaces for ALL learners and staff to be their authentic selves. Discussions about cultures and identities in education are important to ensure equitable access for ALL learners. [Emphasis added.]

And so on.

CRT is not taught in the public schools.

But Doug's promise presumes that it is.

That is a lie.

Doug Mastriano is lying to you about CRT and about The Little Sisters of the Poor.

October 29, 2022

Yea, You Know They're Gonna Try...

A week or so ago, Rolling Stone published this:

To whit: 

In recent months, Trump has convened a series of in-person meetings and conference calls to discuss laying the groundwork to challenge the 2022 midterm election results, four people familiar with the conversations tell Rolling Stone. In these conversations, pro-Trump groups, attorneys, Republican Party activists, and MAGA diehards often discuss the type of scorched-earth legal tactics they could deploy. 

And they’ve gamed out scenarios for how to aggressively challenge elections, particularly ones in which a winner is not declared on Election Night. If there’s any hint of doubt about the winners, the teams plan to wage aggressive court campaigns and launch a media blitz. Trump himself set the blueprint for this on Election Night 2020, when — with the race far from decided — he went on national television to declare: “Frankly, we did win this election.”

Over at Elon's place, J.J. Abbott tweeted:

J. J. (Hey, J.J.! Do you prefer "Good Times" or "Abbot and Costello" references? 'Cause I got both.) follows that up with a couple of good sources for info.


Leigh Chapman, Pennsylvania’s top election official explained during a Wednesday interview that because of a state law that does not allow officials to begin counting mail-in ballots until 7 a.m. on Election Day, results for Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial and U.S. Senate elections might not be available for “days” afterwards. Since Democrats are more likely to trust and participate in mail-in voting while Republicans are more likely to vote in-person, early tabulations could show Republican candidates with a lead that is then whittled down as mail-in ballots are tabulated over time.

And (as far as this non-expert can tell) this is the law that says so.

From Title 25 § 3146.8 

[1.1] The county board of elections shall meet no earlier than seven o'clock A.M. on election day to pre-canvass all ballots received prior to the meeting.


[2] The county board of elections shall meet no earlier than the close of polls on the day of the election and no later than the third day following the election to begin canvassing absentee ballots and mail-in ballots not included in the pre-canvass meeting.

 Something the Republican led legislature could have changed, but they didn't.

Negotiations between the Republican-led legislature and Gov. Tom Wolf to let counties begin opening mail ballots in Pennsylvania before Election Day appeared to collapse Wednesday, setting up a potential nightmare scenario that some fear could leave the state counting millions of ballots for days after Nov. 3.

The Democratic governor and legislative leaders had been negotiating behind closed doors as recently as Tuesday to change the election code after months of inaction. But the General Assembly adjourned Wednesday and is not scheduled to reconvene until Nov. 10, a week after the election.

So next time you hear your crazy MAGA friends question the authenticity of the "sudden" influx of "democrat votes" posted a day or so after election day, now you know that this is a situation the Republicans in Harrisburg could have changed, but simply chose not to.

They want it this way so they can wail about "election integrity."

Abbot also posted this link.

Let's take a look at what PA has to say about:

Ballot Security:

Ballots cast in PA are subject to strict security measures known as chain-of-custody requirements. Votes cannot be added, changed or deleted. Election results are audited for accuracy.

Voting Machines:

PA counties choose what voting systems they use. Federal and state laws require counties have verifiable, auditable paper records and that voting machines are kept secure and tested for accuracy.

And remember, when our MAGA friends start in on Act 77, remind them that both the GOP led House and GOP led Senate voted for it.

Including St Sen (and right wing nut job) Doug Mastriano and St Rep (and right wing nut job) Daryl Metcalfe.

J. J. posted two good sources of info so take your pick (I'll take the shovel.)

My profound Apologies: I could not resist the Abbott and Costello joke.

October 27, 2022

October 27

Yea, today.

Today in 2018, this happened

Eleven people have been killed and a number of others injured after a shooting at The Tree of Life Synagogue in Squirrel Hill on Saturday.

Police sources tell KDKA's Andy Sheehan the gunman, Robert Bowers, walked into the building and yelled, "All Jews must die." Sheehan's sources also confirmed that eleven people have died. No children are among the deceased.

So why, let's look again, did he do it?

This is why

“They’re committing genocide to my people,” Bowers told police during the shootout, according to an FBI affidavit. “I just want to kill Jews.” 

Investigators searched Bowers’ home with a robot on Saturday and searched his vehicle on Sunday, the FBI said. They’re looking for surveillance footage from the area that could provide clues.

For weeks before the shooting, Bowers targeted Jews in frequent posts on Gab, a social media platform that bills itself as “the free speech social network.” He used anti-Semitic slurs, complained that President Donald Trump was surrounded by too many Jewish people and blamed Jews for helping migrant caravans in Central America. 

Gab, you say? 

Is that the social media platform that St Sen (and now GOP cand. for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano paid five large for consulting services access to members?

Why, yes. Yes it is.

Pennsylvania Sen. Doug Mastriano’s campaign for governor in Pennsylvania paid $5,000 for “consulting services” to Gab, a social media platform that provides a home for conspiracy theories and antisemitic content.

Gab is the website used by Robert Bowers, who is charged with killing 11 Jewish worshippers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Squirrel Hill in 2018. Bowers routinely posted antisemitic content on Gab before the shooting, according to archives of the posts.

It was earlier this year - about 3.5 years after the Tree of Life shooting. So Doug must've known Gab's history, right? I mean he's an intelligence guy, right? Thoughtful, careful researcher, right?

Anyway, Bowers' attack was an inevitable outcome of the so-called "Great Replacement" Theory.

From the ADL:

  •  “The Great Replacement” theory has its roots in early 20th century French nationalism and books by French nationalist and author Maurice Barres. However, it was French writer and critic Renaud Camus who popularized the phrase for today’s audiences when he published an essay titled "Le Grand Remplacement," or "the great replacement," in 2011. Camus himself alluded to the “great replacement theory” in his earlier works and was apparently influenced by Jean Raspail’s racist novel, The Camp of the Saints.
  • Camus believes that native white Europeans are being replaced in their countries by non-white immigrants from Africa and the Middle East, and the end result will be the extinction of the white race.
  • Camus focused on Muslim immigration to Europe and the theory that Muslims and other non-white populations had a much higher birth rate than whites. His initial concept did not focus on Jews and was not antisemitic.
  • The “great replacement” philosophy was quickly adopted and promoted by the white supremacist movement, as it fit into their conspiracy theory about the impending destruction of the white race, also know as “white genocide.” It is also a strong echo of the white supremacist rallying cry, “the 14 words:” “We must secure the existence of our people and a future for white children.”
  • Since many white supremacists, particularly those in the United States, blame Jews for non-white immigration to the U.S. the replacement theory is now associated with antisemitism.
  • The night before the August 2017 the Unite the Right rally, white supremacists, marching across the University of Virginia campus, shouted, “Jews will not replace us,” and “You will not replace us,” clear references to Camus’ theory.

Will St Sen Doug Mastriano be commemorating the Tree of Life shooting today? 

How about just thinking about all those dead people killed for an anti-Semitic theory spread on the "media platform" he shuttled five grand to be a part of?

Just wondering.

October 26, 2022

Last Night's Debate - The Main Takeaway

Yes, it was difficult to watch - both sides.

However if there's one thing to take away from the debate it's this:

And remember if everything goes belly up (or "pear shaped" as our friends across the pond would say), this guy would be the chief "local politician" in Pennsylvania:

October 25, 2022

Does Doug Mastriano Watch 60 Minutes? Did He Watch This Sunday? (Doug's Lies About Dominion Voting)

Did he see this?

You can read along here.

It starts thusly:

It was just days after the 2020 presidential election that lawyers supporting then-President Donald Trump began spreading unsubstantiated claims that an American company - Dominion Voting Systems - had rigged the election. They said Dominion was backed by Venezuela, and that its machines and software switched millions of votes from Donald Trump to Joe Biden.

They never showed any evidence, but that didn't stop pro-Trump attorneys from making baseless claims, or conservative news networks from giving them plenty of airtime.

Unsubstantiated claims. They never showed any evidence. 

That didn't stop right wing politicians from spreading the lies.

Take a look here:

Pennsylvania Republican state Sen. Doug Mastriano has been identified as a key figure by the House Jan. 6 committee in their investigation into the Capitol insurrection and efforts to overturn the 2020 election.

Mastriano repeatedly supported Trump’s election-fraud lies...

And so on.

Among those lies are Trump's lies about Dominion. For example:

  • 11/12/2020 – Posts Trump tweet spreading debunked claims about Dominion voting machines altering election results.
  • 11/16/2020 – Posts Trump tweet spreading debunked conspiracy theories about Dominion voting software being altered by its creators.
  • 12/14/2020 – Shares article promoting baseless conspiracy theories about Dominion machines altering election results.
  • 12/16/2020 – Appears on NewsMax and falsely claims Dominion voting machines were “intentionally built” to create tabulation errors. He provides no proof to support this.

Then there's this:

Mastriano emerged from obscurity to become the “GOP legislator most loyal to Trump.” Between November 2020 and Jan. 6, 2021, he posted election disinformation on his Facebook page more than 100 times. Biden’s win, Mastriano claimed, was “statistically impossible.” He advocated decertifying Dominion voting machines.

And this

Mastriano also wants to cancel state contracts with “compromised voting machine companies,” particularly Dominion Voting Systems. Dominion machines are used in 14 Pennsylvania counties and were the subject of conspiracy theories that they flipped votes to President Biden away from President Trump in the 2020 election.

These claims are not just false. They’re the subject of a defamation lawsuit by Dominion against Fox News and One America News Network—but Mastriano wants to make state policy around them. Not “governor” material if you ask me.

And so on.

Doug must know he's vulnerable on this issue. See that link on "also wants"? It links to his "plan" for what he threatens to do if elected.

This is what it looked like when that Pennlive piece was written:

And this is what it looks like now:

See the difference?

He's removed the part about the "compromised voting machines" hasn't he?


Will Doug Mastriano correct his misstatements regarding Dominion Voting?

An honorable man would. Doug Mastriano won't.

October 24, 2022

Candidate Doug Mastriano Is Lying To You. Again.

From PennLive:

The Republican candidate for governor of Pennsylvania this week falsely claimed that the prestigious children’s hospital in Philadelphia was “grabbing” homeless and foster children and “experimenting on them with gender transitioning.”

It was the latest in a series of extreme and false statements by Doug Mastriano, who made the comments during an interview with a right-wing network that features Steve Bannon and a steady stream QAnon conspiracies.

This is what he did.

Start with this. The Gender and Sexuality Development Program at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia:

The Gender and Sexuality Development Program offers psychosocial and medical support for gender nonconforming, gender expansive and transgender children and youth up to age 21 and their families. Our multidisciplinary team includes specialists in gender identity development from Social Work and Family Services, Adolescent Medicine, Endocrinology, and Behavioral Health. We work with your family to best meet the needs of your child or youth who is transgender or gender nonconforming. We also provide consultation and training for providers and organizations interested in learning how to better serve the needs of gender nonconforming youth.

And more here:  

Transgender children and youth can feel different, alone, misunderstood or unsupported, resulting in negative physical and emotional outcomes. Also, many transgender children and youth are fully supported by their parent, schools and churches, which results in healthy and happy families.

The Gender and Sexuality Development Program at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) can help families in all of these situations. We offer psychosocial and medical support for gender nonconforming, gender expansive and transgender children and youth up to age 21 and their families. Our goal is to support children, youth and their families so they can live healthy and happy lives.

Mix that with this tweet:

Note the phrases "receives referrals from foster care and homeless shelters" and "emancipated minors" in that description.

And this is how Doug spins that necessary and helpful information:

Mastriano then took the opportunity to falsely claim: “He’s standing aside while the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is grabbing homeless kids and kids in foster care, apparently, and experimenting on them with gender transitioning, something that’s irreversible.”

In St Sen (and now GOP cand for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano's reality "receiving referrals from foster care and homeless shelters" somehow becomes "grabbing homeless kids" and performing gender experiments on them. The clear implication is that it's all involuntary.

Real reality is very different. Some transgender kids are referred to the clinic by homeless shelters/foster care and if they are underage and are seeking treatment and are emancipated from their parents, they can receive it.

Doug Mastriano is lying to the public, in public. Again.


October 22, 2022

So Trump's Been SUBPOENAED. Now What? (Is Doug Mastriano Concerned?)

It's been said at many times and in many places, "All politics is local."

So now that Trump's been served, what does that mean locally?

And by "locally" I mean of course in the Pennsylvania gubernatorial race.

Of course.

So when, on the first page, we see this:

Purposely and maliciously disseminating false allegations of fraud related to the 2020 presidential election in order to aid your effort to overturn the election and for purposes of soliciting contributions;

And this:

Orchestrating and overseeing an effort to obtain and transmit false electoral certificates to Congress and the National Archives; 

Can we assume that at least part of that story involves Doug's "hearing" in Gettysburg in November of 2020?

I mean we have already seen that:

Three weeks after the election, Giuliani and his associates pushed a new strategy: attempting to persuade conservative state legislatures to simply disregard the election results and declare Trump the winner of their states’ Electoral College votes. The Constitution, Trump’s team argued, granted this power.

With Pennsylvania a focus, Flynn dispatched Waldron to a state Senate hearing held by Republican lawmakers there.


At the end of the hearing, President Trump joined in on the speaker phone. “I’ve been watching the hearing on OAN,” the far-right television news channel, Trump said. “I’m in the Oval Office right now, and it’s very interesting to see what’s going on.”

Waldron said he visited the White House later that day with Giuliani and others. “That was great!” he said Trump told them.

The White House focus turned to pushing Republican-led legislatures in Pennsylvania, Arizona, Michigan, Wisconsin and Georgia to replace Biden electors with those for Trump. “That whole strategy started from that Pennsylvania hearing,” Waldron said.[Emphasis added.]

Yea, that's Doug Mastriano's hearing they're talking about.

As part of the subpoena, Trump was ordered to produce documents. Lots and lots of documents. Including:

All records of any telephone calls, text messages, or communications through Signal or any other means, placed or received by you or at your direction, including records of any calls you joined as an active or passive participant, from November 3, 2020, to January 5, 2021, relating or referring in any way to the 2020 presidential election or the joint session of Congress on January 6, 2021.

We already know that Trump called Doug's "hearing" on November 25, 2020. So we know records of that call will be included, am I right? But it would also include any follow up calls between Donnie and Dougie.

The Committee also wanted to see this:

For the period from September 1, 2020, to January 20, 2021, any communications, sent or received through Signal or any other means, including but not limited to memoranda to you, referring or relating in any way to plans or efforts to: (1) encourage state legislatures, state legislators, or other state or local officials to take any measure to delay or change the certification of the presidential election; or (2) have electors pledged to Donald J. Trump meet and cast Electoral College votes in any state that, at any time before or after such a meeting, certified Joseph R. Biden, Jr. as the winner of the state’s popular vote.

We already know Doug was the White House's "point person" in Pennsylvania for the fake elector scheme.

As they organized the fake elector scheme, lawyers appointed a “point person” in seven states to help organize those electors who were willing to sign their names to false documents. In Pennsylvania, that point person was Douglas V. Mastriano, a proponent of Mr. Trump’s lies of a stolen election who is now the Republican nominee for governor.

So how much subpoenaed material of Trump's can we expect to find Doug Mastriano's name on?

Judging from how much Doug was (seemingly) involved, I'd say a sizeable amount.

October 21, 2022

Meanwhile, Outside...

Again, some Climate Science from some climate scientists over at NOAA:

The September 2022 global surface temperature departure tied September 2021 as the fifth highest for September in the 143-year record at 0.88°C (1.58°F) above the 20th century average of 15.0°C (59.0°F). The ten warmest Septembers on record have all occurred since 2012. September 2022 also marked the 46th consecutive September and the 453rd consecutive month with temperatures, at least nominally, above the 20th century average.


The January–September global surface temperature was 0.86°C (1.55°F) above the 1901-2000 average of 14.1°C (57.5°F) — the sixth-highest January–September temperature in the 143-year record. The ten warmest January–September periods on record have occurred since 2010. According to NCEI's statistical analysis, the year 2022 is very likely to rank among the ten warmest years on record but a less than 5% chance to rank among the five warmest years on record.

And we already know what the GOP Candidate for PA Gov had to say about the above:

It's fake science and it's a racket at the academic level.

Meanwhile, it's still getting warmer out there.


October 20, 2022

PA St Sen Doug Mastriano Is LYING About The Vaccines. Again.

Ah the classics.

In a recent press release, St Sen (and now GOP cand. for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano replays many of the Covid-19 great hits that brought him to statewide (and then nationwide) prominence in the first place.

For example, he lies in his opening:

Sen. Doug Mastriano (R-33) urged residents to tell the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that COVID-19 vaccinations shouldn’t be included in the routine immunization schedule for children.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is experimental, at best, and may pose more risk to some children and teens than it does benefits,” Mastriano said. “Rushing to add this to the immunization schedule is not only dangerous, but could also disenfranchise millions of families if their kids are barred from school simply for refusing the vaccine.”

Doug seems to have rushed out his outrage about mandates. Too bad he didn't wait to see this in The Washington Post:

But the claim was wrong: The CDC cannot mandate that schoolchildren receive vaccines, a decision left up to states and jurisdictions, the agency and multiple public health officials said. The initial tweet by Nicole Saphier, a radiologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, also misconstrued a planned meeting of CDC advisers, who voted Wednesday to add coronavirus vaccines to the federal Vaccines for Children (VFC), a safety-net program that offers the shots at no cost. A separate meeting set for Thursday would address the agency’s immunization schedule for children.

But that's not the biggest lie in those two paragraphs. The biggest lie is that Doug is still spreading the "experimental" line of anti-vaxx rhetoric.

Much like he did almost exactly a year ago

"I guess I shouldn't call it a 'vaccine,'" Mastriano continued, a reference to false claims and disinformation that mRNA vaccines, such as the ones from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, are not true vaccines because they rely on a new medical technology to spur antibody production. The inoculation from Johnson & Johnson is a more traditional vector vaccine.

That was October 10, 2021. What Doug said then is a lie and it's a lie now. Facts are stubborn things.

Then there's this from Doug's press release:

Medical experts and researchers have released multiple studies pointing to the ineffectiveness of the vaccine in preventing infection or transmission of the COVID-19 virus. Data from the CDC released in October notes more than 783,000 people sought care for adverse vaccine reactions, and preliminary reports suggest nearly 17,000 died.

That part contains the biggest dishonesties of all. If you were to see the link on the word "reports" and wonder what it links to, it links to this page at the CDC. Before clicking on it, you would probably think that that link actually supports Doug's assertions regarding the post-vaccination adverse reactions and death.

But it does not.

This is actually what it says:

What You Need to Know

And remember when Doug said that "preliminary reports suggest nearly 17,000 people died" after taking the vaccine? Where do you think Doug got that number?

Well, there's this from the page Doug linked to:

Reports of death after COVID-19 vaccination are rare. FDA requires healthcare providers to report any death after COVID-19 vaccination to VAERS, even if it’s unclear whether the vaccine was the cause. Reports of adverse events to VAERS following vaccination, including deaths, do not necessarily mean that a vaccine caused a health problem. More than 627 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines were administered in the United States from December 14, 2020, through October 12, 2022. During this time, VAERS received 16,888 preliminary reports of death (0.0027%) among people who received a COVID-19 vaccine. CDC and FDA clinicians review reports of death to VAERS including death certificates, autopsy, and medical records. [Emphasis in original.]

See where it says that "VAERS received 16,888 preliminary reports of death" it's a few lines away from this sentence in bold that reads "Reports of adverse events to VAERS following vaccination, including deaths, do not necessarily mean that a vaccine caused a health problem."

That's where.  However Doug leaves out all the necessary limitations about the VAERS data. In any event, together that means that Doug Mastriano is lying to you. He just doesn't think you'll check his work.

Where does he think he is, University of Brunswick?

You're a liar, Doug Mastriano. And your lies will make people sick and some of them may well die.

October 19, 2022

Uh-oh. Perhaps Doug Mastriano ISN'T Fit For Office!

From the NYTimes:

The crowning chapter of Doug Mastriano’s military career — a stint on the faculty of the U.S. Army War College — has flared up in his campaign for Pennsylvania governor.

Two former professors at the War College in Carlisle, Pa., publicly declared Mr. Mastriano unfit for public office. A photograph surfaced of Mr. Mastriano posing in a Confederate uniform with other faculty. And Mr. Mastriano’s Ph.D. dissertation has been criticized as deeply flawed, with a former academic adviser saying his doctorate rests “on very shaky grounds.”

As unsere deutschen Freunde would say, "Ja, und?"

Well, The Times has this:

“The officer corps is sworn to defend the Constitution rather than any one person or president,” Tami Davis Biddle, who was chair of the War College’s faculty council, wrote in an opinion article for a Harrisburg newspaper. “None of its members is entitled to toy with insurrection, treat Jan. 6 as legitimate protest, or follow election deniers who would undercut our most important political institutions.”

Professor Biddle's editorial is not only focussed on St. Sen. (and now GOP cand. for PA Gov.) Doug Mastriano, but also on Rep Scott Perry.

She writes:

Watching our system work reliably was, for me, an ongoing source of pride. Until 2020. We took for granted that a president who lost an election would respect and protect the smooth power transition vital to a well-functioning, prosperous society. More than 60 courts found no evidence of interference in the 2020 election. By rejecting those results and supporting the insurrection and the Big Lie about the 2020 election, Doug Mastriano and Scott Perry have rejected the oath they swore to the Constitution when they became officers. Instead, they align themselves with the MAGA movement’s attack on the democratic institutions that have made our nation productive, stable, secure, and a beacon of hope for the world.

Even though both Perry and Mastriano came through the military’s professional education system—Mastriano even taught for a time at the US Army War College—they have chosen to put their personal interests ahead of the nation’s. Perry was so deeply involved in the insurrection he sought a pardon from Mr. Trump. Mastriano was present at the Capitol on January 6th, he urged people on but now accepts no responsibility for what happened.[Emphasis added.]

You can find the entire editorial at The Internet Archive

As I wrote back in June of this year:

PA State Senator (and now GOP candidate for PA Governor) Doug Mastriano joined the United States Army after college and was commissioned as a 2nd lieutenant. 

This is the oath every commissioned officer takes:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office on which I am about to enter. So help me God.
And each time (and there have been two) he was sworn into the Pennsylvania Senate, Doug Mastriano took this oath:

I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support, obey and defend the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of this Commonwealth and that I will discharge the duties of my office with fidelity.

And Doug Mastriano has betrayed both solemn oaths.

October 13, 2022

This Afternoon...(will Doug Mastriano Be Watching The Hearings?)

From CNN:

The House Select Committee investigating the January 6 attack on the US Capitol will treat its Thursday hearing as a closing argument ahead of the November midterms, which will seek to hammer home that former President Donald Trump remains a clear and present danger to democracy, particularly in the context of the upcoming 2024 presidential election, multiple sources tell CNN.

Although there will not be witnesses appearing in-person on Thursday, sources say, the hearing will feature new testimony and evidence that the committee has uncovered. Since its last hearing in July, the committee has interviewed more former members of Trump’s cabinet, received more than a million communications from the Secret Service from the lead-up to the riot, and sat down with Ginni Thomas, the wife of Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.

“We discovered through our work through this summer what the President’s intentions were, what he knew, what he did, what others did,” committee member Rep. Zoe Lofgren told CNN on Tuesday evening, referring to the material gathered since the panel’s last hearing in July.

The NYTimes

The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack is planning on Thursday to present a sweeping summation of its case against former President Donald J. Trump at what could be its final public hearing, seeking to reveal damning new evidence about Mr. Trump’s state of mind and his central role in the effort to overturn the 2020 election.


The panel is attempting to refocus the country’s attention on Mr. Trump’s central role in attempting to overturn the 2020 election, including how he encouraged his supporters to congregate in Washington; agitated them and directed them to the Capitol even though he knew they were armed and threatening violence; and then did nothing to stop the violence for hours.
And let's never ever forget who was there wandering around The Capitol while Trump's mob was storming the building in order to overturn the 2020 election.

Doug Mastriano (seen here with fellow insurrectionist Rick Saccone):

Doug Mastriano (seen here walking past the Capitol steps - Rebbie, his wife, is with him):

Doug Mastriano (seen here - with wife Rebbie - walking through the police barricades):

It was State Senator (and now GOP candidate for Pennsylvania Governor) Doug Mastriano.

Will you be watching today's hearings, Senator? 

You're part of the plot to overturn the election. You know that, right?

October 12, 2022

Wait. What? Fact Checking Rebbie Mastriano's Chat WIth God

Take a look:


The bottom line is, we didn't...we knew our country wasn't in good shape when Doug stepped into office in June of 2019. But obviously things have been revealed a lot more since then. And just to let you all know because some of you have probably already heard this but I am sure not all of you have.

So he got sworn in on June 10th 2019 and I was told by The Lord to take a personal day of prayer and fasting on September 11th. And this was maybe in August he told me to satisfy that day.

And so I thought, "Wow OK. Kind of telling me a ways ahead. It must be pretty important." So I even prayed up to that prayer and fasting time.

And during that time, God very specifically that He was about to do a great shaking to bring down strongholds that only He could bring down.

Ok, I didn't know exactly what that meant. But I believe what he was telling me was that something was going to happen. Of course I had no way to know it was going to go beyond our district or the state of Pennsylvania. That's as large as my mind went. I didn't go to a whole nation worldwide thing.

But about three days after he told me that, we had a small earthquake on the corner of Doug's district. And interestingly enough it was the district that I could sense the strongest evil stronghold in in all of the district that we had traveled.

So I very much felt like that was an explanation point on the end of it.

So what the hell happened on September 11, 2019? What "strongholds" so  strong that only God could bring them down were brought down?

I haven't been able to find anything earthshattering on that day, 9/11/2019.

Did God mislead Rebbie Mastriano with some fake information?

And how about that earthquake in the evil district?

That part, at least, is backed up by evidence at least. Penn Live, September 14, 2019.

A 2.9 earthquake was confirmed in western York County and eastern Adams County Saturday, according to the United States Geological Survey.

The small earthquake was reported at 9:11 p.m. It was located 2.5 miles south of East Berlin.

Early reports do not indicate any injuries, or property damage.

So no strongholds brought down by God.

She's talking about East Berlin, Pennsylvania. Which is in Adams County which is in Doug Mastriano's legislative district.

But how is East Berlin evil? Rebbie said it was "the strongest evil stronghold" in all the places they visited.

Solidly Republican, voted for Trump in 2020. Why on earth would Rebbie Mastriano say it was the strongest stronghold of evil?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Or is Rebbie Mastriano just deluded by her faith and is spouting what any rational person would think is complete and utter nonsense?

October 11, 2022

Um, I Have ANOTHER Question For St Sen Doug Mastriano (U.S. Army, Retired)

The Department of Defense is clear:

DOD policy for service members is contained in Department of Defense Directive 1344.10, Political Activities for Members of the Armed Forces. It is DOD policy to encourage members of the armed forces to carry out the obligations of citizenship while keeping with the traditional concept that members on active duty should not engage in partisan political activity. All members of the armed forces, including active-duty members, members of the reserve components not on active duty, and retired members are prohibited from wearing military uniforms at political campaign or election events.    

St Sen (and now GOP cand. for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano is retired from the US Military.

So why is this picture at his campaign website

It's in a set of photos titled "Doug & Carrie Around Pennsylvania"

Yes, the website does contain this statement:

Doug Mastriano is a retired member of the United States Army. Use of his military rank, job titles, and photographs in uniform does not imply endorsement by the Department of the Army or the Department of Defense.

But that's completely beside the point. 

The image of Doug in uniform is posted on his campaign website. The set of photographs is of campaign events - or why else would it be on his campaign website? So there was at least one campaign event where Doug Mastriano wore his Class A uniform.

Even though (to reiterate) the DOD said this:

All members of the armed forces, including active-duty members, members of the reserve components not on active duty, and retired members are prohibited from wearing military uniforms at political campaign or election events. 

Any comment, Senator?

October 9, 2022

Um...One Small Thing They Left Out - Or Was It That They Put In?

Take a look at this ad:

A few seconds in, Sen Mastriano's wife Rebbie says this:

One of the biggest challenges, besides deployment, was serving in Alpha Company.

That's followed by a big burly guy named Lance Frazee who says:

There's a lot of pressure on these soldiers, you know. There were suicides there.

He then praises the added level of discipline that Doug Mastriano brought to the company. Discipline that brought down the number of suicides in Alpha Company.

 To hear them say it Alpha Company was some super secret commando unit under tons of stress right? On some dangerous mission, right? Or at least training for one, right?

Um, you might want to start your own research with this

State Sen. Doug Mastriano, the Republican nominee for governor of Pennsylvania, has released a new ad featuring a testimonial from Army Staff sergeant Lance Frazee.


Frazee, who served in the Alpha Company, 229th Military Intelligence Battalion in the late 1990s under Mastriano's leadership, is featured in the ad, describing Mastriano's style as a military leader.[Emphasis added.]

Ok, so it's Military Intelligence. But again to hear them talk about it, Alpha Company must've been an MI unit deployed to some dangerous area of the world, right? On some dangerous missions in the middle of some big bad dangerous danger, right?

Guess again.

Take a look at this (from the Wayback Machine, dated June 17, 2021)

It's the Army's language school. And where is this language school located?

229th Military Intellignece Battalion, ATTN: S1
431 Rifle Range Road
BLDG 616, Taylor Hall
Presidio of Monterey, California 93944

The Army's language school in northern California. The entire school system, according to the thesis, encompassed more than 1,000 students and civilian instructors.

And finally from Doug Mastriano's thesis, we get a little more info:

In 1995, he moved to the Defense Language Institute, Monterey, California and served as the Operations Officer (S3) of the 229th Military Intelligence Battalion and as the Commander of Alpha Company.

One of the duties of an S3 is training.

And according to this history of the Defense Language Institute in Monterey, this is how the 229th was arranged in the late 90s:

The soldiers of the 229th MI Battalion were organized into six companies, A through F. Five of the companies were dedicated to initial-entry soldiers who, in addition to language training, had to complete their soldierization training while at the Presidio of Monterey. Alpha Company consisted of students studying Korean, Chinese, and the languages of South East Asia. Bravo Company was for students studying Arabic, Hebrew and Turkish. Charlie Company consisted primarily of soldiers studying western European languages. Delta Company was diverse, containing students studying thirteen different languages. Delta Company had platoons of soldiers from Middle East II, Middle East I, the European and Latin American School, and European II as well as a platoon for officers and NCOs. Echo Company contained students from Asian I, Asian II, and European I schools. Soldiers who were in casual status were assigned to 4th Platoon of Echo Company as well. Foxtrot Company contained Russian students.

They were initial-entry soldiers who had yet to complete their "soldierization" in the Army. So Doug was training newly post-basic training linguists who were putting in 7 hour days immersed in their language but had not yet completed their full initial training in the US Army.

Right. Got it.

According to the above history this is what Doug was actually doing:

DLIFLC students are, for the most part, members of the Armed Forces and may be called upon for a number of military duties. The majority of Army students in the late 1990s were also required to complete their basic entry training after they arrived in Monterey. Thus, in addition to language training, soldierization and professional development training were key missions of Troop Command and later the 229th Military Intelligence Battalion. On 10 February 1996, Alpha Company, under the command of Captain Douglas Mastriano, participated in Operation Dragon Thunder on the Presidio Annex at the former Fort Ord. The training, focused upon military operations in urban terrain, allowed soldiers to use both their newly acquired military and language skills in a realistic combat scenario.

Though after a second such training operation a few months later, Doug's superiors were not that happy with the program:

Although the students enjoyed Operation Dragon Thunder and were more than willing to give up a Saturday, Mastriano faced opposition to continuing the exercises. “The battalion was not supportive, saying that the company commander wasted resources such as smoke grenades, artillery simulators and blank rounds.” It would be another two years until there was a renewed emphasis in soldierization under Lieutenant Colonel Rundle.

But look who else was there. This is from The Globe, the magazine of the DLIFLC, dated March/April 1996 (pg 16-17):

Operation Dragon Thunder is the name applied to Alpha Company soldiers' final step at DLI toward fulfilling these soldierization skills. The Feb. 10 exercise evaluated their ability to combine basic military and language skills in a simulated-combat environment. More than 100 Alpha soldiers participated in the exercise, encompassing six separate language classes. "This operation is not only designed to meet the soldierization requirements, but to give our soldiers more of a real-world scenario," said Sgt. Lance Frazee, Alpha Company's training NCO. [Emphasis added.]

Hey, it's Lance the big burly guy from Doug's ad!

Small world, huh?

But tell me. The soldierization if these folks was already a pretty good if rather mundane story of good military training. Why feel the need to juice it up with references to how Doug's training reduced the numbers of suicides in Alpha Company?

And just how many suicides were there at that language school before Doug showed up? How many when he left? If he succeeded in reducing the number of suicides (plural) there, isn't the bigger story the failure of the previous S3 to address them?

Don't get me wrong, any suicide in the military is a tragedy (as it is among military veterans) and I am not looking to lessen that issue but isn't it cheapened it when it's injected it into an otherwise everyday example of good military leadership for simple political points?

Isn't it?

Oh, and one more point. St Sen (and now GOP cand. for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano wants to assure all Pennsylvanians that he has their back (that's why he told the "I stopped some suicides" story, y'know).

But of course that would not include:

  • Pregnant rape victims forced to give birth to their rapist's child.
  • LGBTQ Pennsylvanians who are married but just not in a Mastriano-sanctioned "traditional" marriage.
  • Women suffering through ectopic pregnancies whose lives will be put in danger by denying them abortion coverage.

Yea, to those Pennsylvanians, Doug Mastriano does not have your (collective) backs. 

He just lied to you.

October 6, 2022

More On Doug Mastriano's History PhD - And Whether It Was Deserved (Hint: It Probably Wasn't)


We've written a bit about St Sen (and now GOP cand. for PA Gov) Doug Mastriano and his, shall we say, less than perfect history work.

Now look. One of his dissertation advisors at the University of New Brunswick is calling out Doug's history dissertation:

One of the most controversial politicians in the United States is causing a stir far north of the campaign trail: at a Canadian university that once granted him a doctorate.

Students at the University of New Brunswick are pushing their university for details about its role in granting Doug Mastriano the crowning academic achievement on his CV in 2013.

A UNB associate professor listed on Doug Mastriano's doctoral dissertation describes it as atrocious academic work and says he can't understand why the paper includes his name. 

"This dissertation has bothered me for nine years," Jeffrey Brown told CBC News in an interview.

"[Mastriano] was awarded a PhD on very shaky grounds."

Some of the issues at hand:

Mastriano's campaign used his doctorate in fending off a recent political controversy. When a photo surfaced showing Mastriano wearing a Confederate uniform at a 2014 educational event, an adviser dismissed it as a smear job against a historian, pointing to his academic credentials.

Brown was on the examining board for Mastriano's dissertation. 

Mastriano's work was dishonest, sloppy, tinged with religious zealotry, and indifferent to facts that contradicted his claims, said Brown, a scholar of U.S. history at UNB and a U.S.-Canada dual citizen.

He expressed alarm when the university granted the PhD and has provided CBC News with emails he sent colleagues at the time. [Emphasis added.]

How long before Brown releases those emails?

How familiar is Brown's description of Mastriano's work? I mean c.mon: dishonest, sloppy, tinged with religious zealotry and indifferent to facts? Describes Mastriano to a T.

Then there's this:

In Oklahoma, a teacher and history PhD candidate wrote last year to the UNB warning that Mastriano's work was rife with academic fraud.

James Gregory, who first encountered Mastriano's work in his published book, says he's since found over 150 problems with the thesis.

It's rampant with fake footnotes, he says, meaning the paper often makes a claim, cites a footnote to back it up, then, when you actually go check the source mentioned in the footnote, it says something else.

He showed CBC News some examples. 

For instance, Mastriano's paper says a journalist first took an interest in York's story because of its religious aspect; a footnote then cites a telegram the journalist, Canadian George Pattullo, sent on Jan. 30, 1919. But Gregory tracked down the telegram and there's nothing about religion, just Pattullo's travel plans and a request for battlefield data. 

"His dissertation is just filled with these issues," Gregory said. "He's making it up."

"It's academic fraud."

Fraud, 'fraid so.

Remember, St Sen Mastriano wrote this about his plan for a "full forensic investigation" in to the Pennsylvania vote in the 2020 election:

A full forensic investigation is critically necessary for our Commonwealth for the sake of transparency and accountability. There is nothing to fear if there is nothing to hide.

That being said, did you know that a few weeks ago the CBC published an article about how it was, until recently, nearly impossible to even find Mastriano's dissertation - or any record of it?

A state senator, author and retired army colonel, Mastriano obtained a PhD in history from UNB in 2013, toward the end of his military career.

Numerous attempts to access the dissertation that Mastriano wrote in order to earn the doctorate have, however, been repelled for the last two years.

"The choice to embargo a thesis is at the discretion of the author, not the institution," UNB's Heather Campbell wrote in May, while rejecting a CBC request to access Mastriano's dissertation.

In the end the University reversed course and released the dissertation.

What was Doug Mastriano hiding? Why did he fear its release?

So many questions.

Oh and if Doug Mastriano has his way, a 15yr old incest victim would be forced to give birth to her rapist's baby and any woman diagnosed with an ectopic pregnancy would be denied the abortion procedure that could save her life. In an ectopic pregnancy, the fetus never survives.

Doug Mastriano is not pro-life. He is forced-birth. And the cruelty of his position is utterly stunning.

The academic fraud in Canada is just dishonest.

October 5, 2022

Re-Posting A NON-Political Post

I turned 59 today.  Typical day, I woke up my usual time and again, like every October 5 for the last few years, I am missing a phone call I know I'm not going to get.

You see, my mom (who passed away a few years ago) and I had a sweet and curious birthday tradition.  Every fifth of October she'd call me on the phone to tell me the story of my birth.  I'd listen quietly and politely each year even though I knew all the details from the previous year's call. And the the call year before that. And the one before that. And so on - turtles all the way down.

Our conversation would usually go something like this:

"You were a very easy birth," she'd say.  "You can thank your older brother for that."

"It was early in the morning. We were living in the apartment in Hamden and I woke up and knew it was time," she'd continue.  "I tapped your father to wake him up.  'Al,' I said. 'It's time to go.'"

"OK," she would say he said.  "I'll make us some coffee."

"No, Al. We have to go now!"

"OK, let me put on my suit."

"No, Al.  Now."

And so they went to the hospital for my very easy birth.

I heard that story every year for more than 20 years - until I didn't.

And I miss it every October 5.

October 4, 2022

Hey, Wendy. It's Been A While, Huh? (You're Still Getting Your Facts WRONG, Wendy Bell)

I know. I know. It's been a long long time since I've written about The Angel of Death.

Odd as that sounds, there are scarier threats to The Republic - Wendy Bell's BFF Doug Mastriano being one.

In any event, had you sauntered, meandered, wandered or otherwise stumbled over to Wendy Bell Radio and found her BS Boards recently, you would have seen this: 

Oh, Wendy. Have you learned nothing in our time together?

Here's the quotation that Wendy Bell, ace-researcher and really really smart person, attributes to Dostoevsky: 

Tolerance will reach such a level that intelligent people will be banned from thinking so as not to offend the imbeciles.
There's a problem here, isn't there?

You know there is.

Here it is: I'm sorry, Wendy but Dostoevsky never said or wrote that. I hope that doesn't hurt your feelings but, as we all know, facts don't care about your feelings.

How do I know that this isn't Dostoevsky?


We found no evidence that Dostoevsky ever said or wrote this particular quote. 

Lead Stories Factcheck:

Did the 19th century Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky say or write this prediction: "Tolerance will reach such a level that intelligent people will be banned from thinking so as not to offend the imbeciles"? No, that's not true: This quote has only recently been incorrectly attributed to "Dostoievski" on social media and there are no records of Dostoevsky writing it. For several years, memes bearing a virtually identical quote in the Russian language have appeared paired with images from the1988 Russian made-for-TV film titled, "Heart of a Dog" based on the 1925 book of the same name by Mikhail Bulgakov. The quote does not appear in the writing of Bulgakov, or in the screenplay of the 1988 TV film written by Natalia Bortko.

Memes including portraits of Dostoevsky paired with this quote began appearing on Facebook in July of 2021 on anti-vaccine activists' social media accounts.

Ah. Well that (perhaps) explains how Wendy found this embarrassing misquote.

Doesn't Brock fact-check your work? Did he ever? Shouldn't someone?

On the other hand, the quote does explain the thrice-fired and now disgraced former "journalist" we see before us. I'm just not sure she understands where she's to be found in the non-Dostoevsky.

This is the woman who routinely lied to her many fans in order to steer them away from the safe and effective vaccines that could protect them.

How many people got sick, Wendy, because they paid attention to your non-science?

October 3, 2022

In Case You Missed It - Wegner's Gets A Shout-out (kinda sorta quiet-like)

From the coverage of the rain-soaked Fetterman rally this weekend.

First there's this rather cryptic from WESA:

Fetterman again claimed that his only lingering stroke symptoms is an occasional auditory processing issue, and a tendency to "mush two words together." He compared the issue to a viral video of Mehmet Oz shopping during which the Republican candidate combined the names of two Pennsylvania grocery stores.

Then there's this from the Post-Gazette:

“As you know, I had a stroke, and I’m so grateful to be here today now after surviving that,” he said. “But, you know, really, you know, the only lingering issue I have after that stroke is auditory processing sometimes, and every now and then I might miss a word or, sometimes, you know, I might mush two words together.”

Citing an example, he again referenced a video in which his opponent mispronounced the name of the grocery chain “Wegman’s” as “Wegner’s,” hitting on a running theme of using popular internet memes to ridicule Mr. Oz and his online presence, particularly on Twitter.

Here's the story:

A video television personality and Republican US Senate candidate for Pennsylvania, Dr. Mehmet Oz posted on social media in April 2022 has gone viral in August as Lt. Governor and Democratic candidate vying for the same seat, John Fetterman, turns the doctor's flob into fodder as campaign merchandise. 

"I'm at Wegner's," Oz says at the start of the strange clip filmed in a supermarket. 

He appears to have conflated the names of two grocery store chains — Redner’s and Wegman's — creating an imaginary third market called “Wegner's," the key word being imaginary as there is no Wegner's.

Here's Redner's. I am sure it's a fine establishment. 

And here's Wegman's. Another fine establishment, I am just as sure.

And here's Wegner's, the imaginary grocery thanks to a viral two-word mush-up from good ole Dr Oz:

Go check out Wegner's - some great stuff there.

Like this: