Tuesday, December 28, 2021

2021: The Year Nothing Fundamentally Changed


The Year Nothing Fundamentally Changed

by C.A. Matthews 

I don't know about you, but I really hate telling folks, "I told you so."

After penning last year's end-of-the-year article, 2020: The Year That Wasn't, I held out some hopes for 2021. Surely I thought we'd get a handle on this COVID-19 pandemic and turn a noticeable corner sometime in 2021. We wouldn't be counting deaths worldwide in the millions and the virus variants by the dozens. The drug manufacturers would gladly share their vaccine formulas with our fellow human beings, and intelligent people everywhere would willingly line up to receive a vaccination.

I even thought that we might--just might--see some decent legislation or executive orders come out  of the Biden White House. We desperately needed leadership to force ICE and CBP to help asylum seekers reunite with their children rather than forcing them to "Remain in Mexico."  We needed leadership to end blatant racism against Haitian immigrants. If we were lucky, the Squad would push Biden "left" and pass Medicare For All to help Americans without health care. Heck, he might even do as his promised on the campaign trail and end the suffering of so many burdened with overwhelming student loan debt. 

Instead, 2021 turned out to be just as candidate Joe Biden said it would, when he announced what his presidency would be like when compared to Trump's: Nothing would fundamentally change.

Ironic, isn't it? It's the only thing he's been right about so far.

So, here we find ourselves at the end of 2021, and we find ourselves pretty much in the same screwed up situation we found ourselves in last year at this time. The pandemic rages on. No mandatory lock downs or even a consistent masking policy has been issued by the CDC. Less than 10% of Africans have been fully vaccinated. Big Pharma refuses to share its vaccine formulas, even though much of the research was funded by US taxpayers and the more people on the planet vaccinated, the less chance for further virus mutations. And things could get much worse now that the omicron variant has popped up in the "everybody go back to work and school as normal" United States of America.

 Nothing has fundamentally changed.

I won't go on about how Americans still don't have universal health care, in spite of living through a pandemic of biblical plague proportions. We don't have universal basic income, either, in spite of record unemployment, under-reported as usual especially for women, the young, and people of color. Student loan repayments will start up again in the new year.  Eviction moratoriums have ended. 

The Biden Administration has some serious problems with arithmetic, too. They early on promised everyone a "$2000 check" but only paid out $1400 so far. Even those of us who can't balance a checkbook can tell you those two numbers aren't the same. 

Nothing has fundamentally changed.

They said they'd stop the war in Afghanistan, and yet they passed a record-breaking military budget this year. (Mercenaries and some American military personnel will remain in Afghanistan, so it's war by another name.) We're "updating" our nuclear arsenal, as if having more nuke power than necessary to wipe out all life on the planet isn't enough. Trump's saber-rattling carries on from 2020 in regards to China and then Russia and then China again and then Russia again and then…

 Nothing has fundamentally changed.

The big COP-26 climate change convention recycled the same ol' tired promises of cleaning up our dirty fossil fuel habits. Ironically, the very next week the Biden Administration sold a record number of oil exploration leases in the Gulf of Mexico, and then a lawsuit to clean up the longest running oil spill in the Gulf in history was decided. "Clean coal" anyone?

Nothing has fundamentally changed.

Worse yet, this mantra is the stinky attitude one gets from the establishment and their billionaire pals. They're fine with things not changing. They're not worried about millions more dying from a preventable illness like COVID-19. They're happy to make sh*t-loads of money from  trading in shares in Big Pharma and buying up the homes that have been foreclosed on this year in order to force us to rent our previous abodes from landlords later.

And war and the environment? Hey, if drone bombing innocents and endlessly fracking oil makes a profit, why would you ever stop? Am I right?

Nothing has fundamentally changed.

If there's one New Year's resolution I'd like to make--and work hard to keep--it's this: Things will fundamentally change in 2022. They have to or else we'll all wind up dead.


Fundamental change won't necessarily come via the voting booth. Unless you're open to voting for third party candidates, who boldly profess radical ideas like ending wars for oil, instituting Medicare For All, and legislating free schooling from pre-K through college, then I wouldn't worry too much about voting. Voting for the "lesser evil" or "any red or blue will do" just creates more evil that our world doesn't want or need. Blindly accepting only two choices to vote for--choices blessed by billionaire capitalists--guarantees "nothing will fundamentally change-ism" will continue.

Change could happen in the streets, through online activism, by knocking on doors, or through a combination of these activities and more. But somehow, change must come. We've got to change things fundamentally this coming year of else there might not be a 2023 to look forward to in another 365 days.

Be the change you dream of. Fundamentally. And we hope to see you again here next year. Stay safe!

Second Thought is an excellent podcast. This recent video focuses on how "Feel Good Stories" are used to distract us from the true horrors of our corrupt system.  Watch and think about what you can do to bring about fundamental change.  https://youtu.be/Sck8xNicy5o


End of the year pleading: Donate a buck or ten to help keep the lights on and the editor sane via this link http://paypal.me/camatthews  Thank you.


Families Belong Together (Logo)

Talking with family members who don’t agree with you over the holidays is hard. And sadly, immigration can be one of the topics that gets most heated.

We’ve all had those tense, uncomfortable conversations with loved ones, and now there’s an extremely helpful resource to help shift dinner-table conversations from confrontational to productive.

Check out the brand-new “Brave Conversations: Immigration Edition” guide now.

Check it out for free now →

These conversations can be hard, but no one has to tackle them alone.

In this guide, there are five simple sections to help center a conversation about immigration in compassion and commonsense:

  • Tips for talking about hard topics
  • Common misconceptions about immigration and how to respond
  • Facts about what’s really happening
  • How to take action
  • Additional resources for further research

Ending family separation is a huge task, and it’s going to take a collective effort, from huge mobilizations to individual conversations with the people closest to us.

Every one of us has the tools to change the hearts and minds of our family and friends, and each individual conversation is a part of the larger national shift needed to ensure safety for immigrant families and children.

We’re in this together, and all of us can use this guide as a resource to help change public opinion on immigrant children and families in the U.S., starting with the people we’re all most influential with: our friends, family, and those who trust us the most.

Check out the guide now →

We believe that to learn and grow, we need to be brave. We must end detention and family separation for good – and it all starts with what we’re talking about at home.

Thanks for all you do,

Tovia Siegel, Organizer
Families Belong Together

P.S. Let me know how any brave conversations go, and send over any suggestions to help improve the guide! Simply email me at info@familiesbelongtogether.org.


Progress America

We’re about to have a constitutional crisis. In the next few months, the Supreme Court is going to overturn or undermine 50 years of precedent in Roe v. Wade, and yet the leadership of the Democratic party seems to give it a big ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

Everyone should be very, very alarmed that our current Supreme Court is an existential threat to our rights and every progressive priority.

The Biden Administration needs to stop twiddling their thumbs while the ultra conservatives on the Supreme Court take away our constitutional rights whether it’s abortion or voting or gender rights. Demand Congress and the Biden Administration pass the Judiciary Act—NOW.

The ultra conservatives Supreme Court Justices are nothing more than right-wing politicians in robes—and the American people know that. Recent polls show the Supreme Court is the most unpopular it’s been in decades, and a majority of Americans no longer believe the justices are deciding cases on the merits. The Court derives its legitimacy from the people, and it’s clear that the American people no longer believe this stolen Court is legitimate.

The conservatives on the court have already told us that they’re not just coming after our human right to abortion access and to determine our own reproductive lives. They have their sights on Obergefell v. Hodges, immigration, and voting rights.

We can stop them from literally destroying our democracy by adding 4 seats to the Court by passing the Judiciary Act of 2021. This is the only practical, proportional response to Republicans’ theft of the Court and the only way to restore its balance and integrity.

Sign the petition to join advocates and activists across the country to demand Congress and the Biden Administration pass the Judiciary Act and add 4 more justices to the Supreme Court NOW.

Mike Phelan
Progress America


In a near-future dystopian world, hope blossoms where mutual aid and democracy begins...

Zonta’s world is turned upside down when Jake arrives at the commune to investigate the disappearance of agents of the Authority. Can she persuade him to switch sides before the Protectors (antifascist fighters) take action?

Available now from Extasy Books: https://www.extasybooks.com/Where-the-Bodies-Lie




  1. I'm not confident that anything will get better. I can only see things getting worse. Joe held to his election pledge, but only the one made to Big Business. He doesn't give a crap about anyone else, certainly not the electorate. His recent 'Tough luck - you're on your own' attitude to the Covid endemic is just another tale in the sorry saga of his presidency. I doubt any of the BNMW crowd have buyers' remorse though.

    1. You wonder if the Blue Maga Cultists won't suffer some kind of buyers' remorse. It's gotta be difficult for them to keep coming up with new excuses and reasoning to explain the lack of empathy the Biden White House demonstrates. That Joe acts just like Donald personally and politically is a troubling fact in itself. The "Vote for the Not-Trump" logic of the 2020 election shows itself for the sham it was. This may come back to haunt the Dems in the midterms.


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