Democracy Has Prevailed.

May 31, 2023

Can Someone Ask Doug Mastriano About THIS??

From The Department of Justice:

A Pennsylvania woman was sentenced today in the District of Columbia on felony and misdemeanor charges for her actions during the Jan. 6, 2021, Capitol breach. Her actions and the actions of others disrupted a joint session of the U.S. Congress convened to ascertain and count the electoral votes related to the presidential election.

Pauline Bauer, 55, of Kane, Pennsylvania, was sentenced to 27 months in prison, 24 months of supervised release and a fine of $2,000 for obstruction of an official proceeding, a felony; entering and remaining in a restricted building; disorderly or disruptive conduct in a restricted building; disorderly and disruptive conduct in any of the Capitol Buildings with the intent to impede, disrupt, and disturb the orderly conduct of a session of Congress or either House of Congress; parading, demonstrating, and picketing in a Capitol Building. Bauer was convicted on January 24, 2023, following a trial before U.S. District Judge Trevor N. McFadden.


Bauer was standing approximately 30 feet from the House Speaker’s office when she was recorded saying “Bring that fucking bitch out here now. Bring her out. Bring her out here. We’re coming in if you don’t bring her out here.” 

And so on.

This is Pauline Bauer at the "Stop The Steal" rally in Harrisburg on January 5, the day before she joined the mob and stormed the Capitol - you'll note her choice of clothing and signage:

Oh, look. Doug Mastriano and Wendy Bell were at that rally as well:

State Sen. Doug Mastriano, who represents parts of Adams, Cumberland, Franklin and York counties, told the crowd the fight is not over, and took aim at Gov. Tom Wolf, saying “Any governor who cared about the people would investigate any allegations.”

He added a proper investigation and audit of the election must be done and, “If people believe their guy won, what are they afraid of?”

Radio personality Wendy Bell spoke near the end of the rally, telling the crowd “We are witnessing an amazing part of our history. Regardless of how it ends, this is the beginning of a great awakening.”

“A sleeping giant has awakened, and it’s called ‘serving us’ like they were elected to do. And we have awakened as well,” she said.

By the way, when Wendy Bell dog-whistles "a great awakening" this is what QAnon hears

Followers of QAnon, the pro-Trump conspiracy theory, have spent weeks anticipating that Wednesday would be the “Great Awakening” — a day, long foretold in QAnon prophecy, when top Democrats would be arrested for running a global sex trafficking ring and President Trump would seize a second term in office.

That's what Pauline Bauer heard the day before she stormed into the Capitol, threatening then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi.

Anyway, back to the sentencing. CBS Congressional Correspondent Scott McFarland was live-tweeting it.

For the purpose of this blog post, this is the interesting part:

And then Bauer reiterated:

In effect, on her way to a couple of years in prison for her actions on January 6, Pauline Bauer asserted during her sentencing that she was radicalized by listening to Doug Mastriano.

Any comment for the blog, Doug?

How about you, Wendy? Any comment?

May 26, 2023

So It's A "No" From Doug?

Oh. My. God.

First Judge Patricia McCullough loses the GOP primary for a seat on the PA Supreme Court and now this:

MAGA firebrand Doug Mastriano said on Thursday that he is not running for Senate in Pennsylvania in 2024.

“At this time, we have decided not to run for the U.S. Senate,” he said, “but to continue to serve in Harrisburg.”

What are the Christian Nationalists to do?

May 24, 2023

For Florida

When day comes we ask ourselves,
where can we find light in this never-ending shade?
The loss we carry,
a sea we must wade
We’ve braved the belly of the beast
We’ve learned that quiet isn’t always peace
And the norms and notions
of what just is
Isn’t always just-ice
And yet the dawn is ours
before we knew it
Somehow we do it
Somehow we’ve weathered and witnessed
a nation that isn’t broken
but simply unfinished
We the successors of a country and a time
Where a skinny Black girl
descended from slaves and raised by a single mother
can dream of becoming president
only to find herself reciting for one
And yes we are far from polished
far from pristine
but that doesn’t mean we are
striving to form a union that is perfect
We are striving to forge a union with purpose
To compose a country committed to all cultures, colors, characters and
conditions of man
And so we lift our gazes not to what stands between us
but what stands before us
We close the divide because we know, to put our future first,
we must first put our differences aside
We lay down our arms
so we can reach out our arms
to one another
We seek harm to none and harmony for all
Let the globe, if nothing else, say this is true:
That even as we grieved, we grew
That even as we hurt, we hoped
That even as we tired, we tried
That we’ll forever be tied together, victorious
Not because we will never again know defeat
but because we will never again sow division
Scripture tells us to envision
that everyone shall sit under their own vine and fig tree
And no one shall make them afraid
If we’re to live up to our own time
Then victory won’t lie in the blade
But in all the bridges we’ve made
That is the promised glade
The hill we climb
If only we dare
It’s because being American is more than a pride we inherit,
it’s the past we step into
and how we repair it
We’ve seen a force that would shatter our nation
rather than share it
Would destroy our country if it meant delaying democracy
And this effort very nearly succeeded
But while democracy can be periodically delayed
it can never be permanently defeated
In this truth
in this faith we trust
For while we have our eyes on the future
history has its eyes on us
This is the era of just redemption
We feared at its inception
We did not feel prepared to be the heirs
of such a terrifying hour
but within it we found the power
to author a new chapter
To offer hope and laughter to ourselves
So while once we asked,
how could we possibly prevail over catastrophe?
Now we assert
How could catastrophe possibly prevail over us?
We will not march back to what was
but move to what shall be
A country that is bruised but whole,
benevolent but bold,
fierce and free
We will not be turned around
or interrupted by intimidation
because we know our inaction and inertia
will be the inheritance of the next generation
Our blunders become their burdens
But one thing is certain:
If we merge mercy with might,
and might with right,
then love becomes our legacy
and change our children’s birthright
So let us leave behind a country
better than the one we were left with
Every breath from my bronze-pounded chest,
we will raise this wounded world into a wondrous one
We will rise from the gold-limbed hills of the west,
we will rise from the windswept northeast
where our forefathers first realized revolution
We will rise from the lake-rimmed cities of the midwestern states,
we will rise from the sunbaked south
We will rebuild, reconcile and recover
and every known nook of our nation and
every corner called our country,
our people diverse and beautiful will emerge,
battered and beautiful
When day comes we step out of the shade,
aflame and unafraid
The new dawn blooms as we free it
For there is always light,
if only we’re brave enough to see it
If only we’re brave enough to be it

For context:

May 17, 2023


From The Trib

Allegheny County Council: Allegheny County Councilwoman Bethany Hallam on Tuesday night won her Democratic primary race against challenger Joanna Doven for an at-large seat on Allegheny County Council, unofficial tallies showed. With more than 154,000 votes tallied and about 96% of precincts reporting results just after 10:30 p.m., Hallam had collected 56.4% of the votes counted compared to 42.9% for Doven, according to the Allegheny County Elections Division.

I put this on top because I wrote about one piece of dishonest Doven literature last week.

The AP is reporting:

Democrat Dan McCaffery and Republican Carolyn Carluccio won their parties’ primaries for a vacant seat on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Tuesday, setting up a fall contest to join a high court that is at the center of cases on guns, abortion and elections in a presidential battleground state.

Each nominee won a two-way primary race. McCaffery defeated Deborah Kunselman, a colleague on the Superior Court, and Carluccio defeated Patricia McCullough, a Commonwealth Court judge who lost a primary for a high court seat in 2021. Party allies reported spending nearly $1 million to help her beat McCullough.

On the campaign trail, McCullough repeatedly boasted of being the “only judge in 2020 in the presidential election in the entire country” to order a halt to her state’s election certification.

She's also Chuck McCullough's wife. Chuck spent some time in jail after being found guilty of abusing his power of attorney when he cut some checks "on behalf" of his client, an elderly dementia patient.

He cut some checks to a number of Pittsburgh area politicians and one charity.

As Dennis Roddy the (pre-strike) PPG noted in 2007:

An Upper St. Clair woman's last-minute gift to Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Pittsburgh created a stir among staff members, one of whom said they were told to keep quiet about it when they found out hours before the charity's annual banquet last year.

The charity this week returned the gift "just out of caution" after a week of reports that the woman's attorney had helped dispense tens of thousands of dollars in political donations the woman later said she did not approve. The attorney, Charles P. McCullough, is also the husband of Patricia McCullough, executive director of Catholic Charities. [Emphasis added.]

Such a relief not to have to revisit this over the next few months.

Back to The Trib:

Allegheny County executive: State Rep. Sara Innamorato declared victory Tuesday night in the crowded Democratic primary race for county executive, unofficial tallies showed. With nearly 168,000 votes tallied and 96% of precincts reporting results, Innamorato had collected 37.5% of the votes counted compared to 29.6% for Weinstein, 19.6% for Pittsburgh Controller Michael Lamb and 9.7% for former Allegheny County Councilman Dave Fawcett, according to the Allegheny County Elections Division.
Khari Mosley won:

And then finally this from WTAE:

Matt Dugan is the projected winner in Tuesday's Democratic primary for Allegheny County district attorney, defeating longtime incumbent Stephen Zappala.

TAE says Zappala was seeing a seventh term - that's a long time.

How long? He was in the office more than a decade before I wrote (for the pre-strike PG) about how Cyril Wecht called him a goombah.

This blog's been around a long time. Stephen Zappala was DA longer.

May 14, 2023

PA St. Sen. Doug Mastriano Sticks To The Anti-Vax Crowd

Take a look:

This is the event:

It even got some local Patch coverage.

Sen Mastriano said he was "joined by a panel of medical professionals" for this conference (heckuva deal at only $50 - and look breakfast and door prizes included!) This is the list from Patch:

  • Dr. Stephanie Coxon, BCTN, PhD
  • Dr. Jeanne O'Connell, MD, Frederick, MD
  • Graham Hetrick, MS, FD, B.C.F.E.
  • Dr. Scott Perlman,Chiropractor, JAS Medical & Wellness Center of GA
  • Michael Carnevale, Quantus Life
  • Dr. Jeff Barke, MD (Member, America's Frontline Doctors - CA)

Let's look at those professionals.

Dr Stephanie Coxon - not a medical doctor. And that BCTN? Took me a while to find out what that means. The American Naturopathic Medical Certification Board says it's:

Board Certified Traditional Naturopath

BTW, there's no medical license required for that certification. She does have a CNHP and a CHS from the Trinity School of Natural Health in Warsaw, IN, where a CNHP is a "Certified Natural Health Professional" and a CHS is a "Certified Health Specialist." Trinity School also offers courses in Aromatherapy and Advanced Biblical Studies, by the way. Her PhD is in "Instructional Leadership and Management" but I wasn't able to track down the university that awarded her that very non-medical/non-scientific degree.

Certainly not an expert on vaccines or Covid or epidemiology.

Dr. Jeanne O'Connell - is a medical doctor. Though not, as far as I can tell, an expert in vaccines or Covid or epidemiology. She is the medical director at Sylvan Medical and Aesthetics Center. Take a look:

Dr. Jeanne O'Connell is a board certified physician with decades of experience in aesthetic, functional, integrative a regenerative medicine. Her vision was to establish a medical spa and medical practice that focuses on aesthetics, underlying illnesses, offering an integrative, evidence-based approach to care and incorporating biomedical approaches that help regenerate cells and tissue to restore or establish normal function.

Dr. O'Connell is also a master of the latest science-based developments in skin care, facial rejuvenation, weight loss and body sculpting. We take a personalized whole person approach to helping you maintain, enhance and restore the healthy glow that comes with looking and feeling your best. At Sylvana Medical & Aesthetics Center we treat the whole person, inside and out, not just symptoms.

Nothing about Covid, by the way.

Graham Hetrick - not a medical doctor. Anti-vax County Coroner in Dauphin County.  I was able to dig up some interesting facts about the good not-a-Dr.

From ABC27:

The Dauphin County Coroner is an outspoken critic of mask mandates and believes the COVID vaccines aren’t safe. Public health officials say arguments like these are dangerous.

 And from Lancaster Online we learn:

Hetrick isn’t a doctor, but he is “a subject matter expert on drug abuse, child death and child abuse, organ tissue donation, violent crimes, medical legal death investigation, forensic methodology, and the grieving process,” according to his website.

Certainly not an expert on vaccines or Covid or epidemiology. But apparently, he looks good on TV.

Dr Scott Perlman - not a medical doctor. A chiropractor. 'Nuff said.

Certainly not an expert on vaccines or Covid or epidemiology. 

Michael Carnevale - not a medical doctor, evidently. He is from an entity called Quantus Life, however. It's a health and wellness center out of Casper, Wyoming and from the website it looks like they'll sell you many products for your health and wellness for what I am presuming is a fair and honest price.

Certainly not an expert on vaccines or Covid or epidemiology.

Dr Jeff Barke - is a medical doctor. But he's from America's Front Line Physicians - a group that has been spreading anti-vax misinformation for years:

A physician group that rampantly spread COVID-19 misinformation is back in the spotlight -- but this time, sowing doubt about the vaccine.

America's Frontline Doctors, an organization that claims to provide uncensored, accurate information about the pandemic, became infamous in July after a viral press conference that protested government lockdown restrictions and spread inaccuracies ranging from the ineffectiveness of masks to claims that hydroxychloroquine could "cure" COVID-19.

Now, those same doctors -- the majority of which have no experience treating COVID-19 patients -- have launched a campaign to warn Americans that they should not be forced to take an "experimental vaccine," while failing to mention the safety trials and large phase III efficacy trials, along with the fact that no vaccine mandate exists.

So, how do we sum up this meeting?

Judging from the poster and what I was able to dig up online, there was little or no actual expertise in vaccines on those panels - certainly not Covid vaccines, certainly not in epidemiology. But there was lots of access to  "health and wellness" and/or naturopathic "remedies" that can be purchased for, I am presuming, a fair and honest price. Have I got that right?

And, yea and judging by who was there and where they came from and what they were looking to sell, I would also presume that there was a fair amount of anti-vax BS there too.

Doug Mastriano, anti-vax activist.

May 10, 2023

Will St Sen Doug Mastriano Be Commenting On Trump's Sexual Assault?

From The Washington Post:

A civil jury in New York found Tuesday that former president Donald Trump sexually abused and defamed E. Jean Carroll, a writer who has accused him of assaulting her in the mid-1990s.

Jurors deliberated for a little under three hours before siding with Carroll, awarding her a combined $5 million in damages. The verdict was an undeniable victory for Carroll, who testified during the trial that Trump violently assaulted her and, years later, unleashed further trauma by ridiculing her as a liar once she spoke out.

The New York Times:

A Manhattan jury on Tuesday found former President Donald J. Trump liable for sexually abusing and defaming E. Jean Carroll and awarded her $5 million in damages. More than a dozen women have accused Mr. Trump of sexual misconduct over the years, but this is the only allegation to be affirmed by a jury.


Donald Trump must pay $5 million in damages for sexually abusing magazine writer E. Jean Carroll in the 1990s and then defaming her by branding her a liar, a jury decided on Tuesday.

Donald Trump, sexual abuser, forced to pay $5 million in damages.

Any comment, Senator Mastriano?

Here are the two of you together at a campaign rally.  You're the guy shaking the abuser's hand.

Surely you have a comment on a jury finding that Trump more than likely sexually assaulted a woman and then defamed her when she spoke out.


May 9, 2023

Um. Yea.

Donald Trump: Sexual abuser

Joanna Doven: Dishonest. At Best.

I'm not a member of the Democratic Party so I usually don't take sides in primary disputes. 

But sometimes you just gotta, y'know?

Got a bit of campaign literature from Joanna Doven and it's targeting Bethany Hallam with the dreadline:

First off, let me ask you a framing question: What do you think when you read that?

That somehow Hallam was in league with and/or supported the Trump/Stone/Flynn coup attempt, right? 

Says so right there. In big scary letters.

At least that's what you're supposed to think.

But you'd be wrong.

A little digging will show you how Doven's campaign chose to mislead you.

Across the page there's this:

And that leads us to the truth. If you were to google (an I suppose the Doven campaign is not counting on you to do this) "A Pennsylvania county delayed certifying the midterms..." you'll get to this article from Vox:

And it starts thusly:

More than a month after the midterm elections, Pennsylvania still hasn’t certified its results of the 2022 election. Recount requests are holding up a process that has been playing out in sometimes dramatic fashion at the county level — producing at least one scene that should set off alarm bells for anyone concerned about election deniers refining their strategy ahead of 2024. [Emphasis added]

Recount requests from whom? Seems that our friends in the "Stop the Steal" crowd flooded the courts with recount requests. The Vox piece is a warning about how the election-deniers are looking to gum up the works in 2024.

This was November 20, 2022. The Court of Common Pleas dismissed them on December 9.

Back to Vox a few weeks before that dismissal:

“How can we certify when we don’t know what the court is going to do?” Democratic County Councilperson At Large Bethany Hallam said at the meeting, prompting applause from the audience and cutting against the attorney’s advice. “I just don’t feel super comfortable jumping the gun ruling for the judge because that’s kind of what it feels like we’re doing.” 

And Hallam?A bit too-careful-by-half, perhaps, but "sided with the insurrectionists?" Where? When? How?

The Doven campaign is misleading you (or at least hoping to mislead enough of you) into thinking that what happened in 2022 actually happened in 2020 and are looking for you to vote accordingly.

They don't trust you to dig for the truth and they're looking to benefit politically for it. In fact they're hoping that you don't - so that you don't unearth their dishonesty.

Joanna Doven should be better than that.

For the record, this is what happened about 2 years earlier in 2020:

The Allegheny County Board of Elections voted Monday to certify results of the Nov. 3 general election.

The vote was 2-1. Democrats Rich Fitzgerald and Bethany Hallam voted to certify, while Republican Sam DeMarco voted no.

Joanna Doven: Will lie to you to get your vote.

May 4, 2023

Doug Mastriano, PhD - Um, Maybe Not?

Anyone else catch this?

From our friends up in The Great White North:

The University of New Brunswick has appointed three professors from other institutions to conduct a formal investigation into allegations of academic fraud against a former PhD student who is also a high-profile ally of former United States president Donald Trump.

The academic credentials of Doug Mastriano, a retired U.S. army colonel and Republican politician, were called into question last fall when several scholars alleged that his 2013 doctoral dissertation was plagued by factual errors, fabrications, omissions and amateurish archeology.


Factual errors? Fabrications? From someone who spread the big lie about 2020?

Say it ain't so, Doug.

Some more details:

The formal complaint was submitted on Oct. 6, 2022, by James Gregory, an instructor and PhD candidate at the University of Oklahoma, who documented 213 allegations of academic misconduct in Mastriano’s dissertation about U.S. army Sgt. Alvin York, a highly decorated First World War infantryman.

On March 3 of this year, Gregory received a letter from UNB’s vice-president of research, David MaGee, who said he had determined the allegations had “sufficient substance” to warrant a formal investigation under the school’s Responsible Conduct in Research policy.

So, Doug ain't much of a historian, is he?

The fact that there was "sufficient substance" to trigger a formal investigation is enough to show that.