Pence was a Smart Choice?

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If Spiro Agnew had remained as vice president, Richard Nixon would never have faced impeachment. No Democrat would trade Richard Nixon for the far right intellectual neanderthal Agnew. Agnew was forced to resign and Jerry Ford replaced him. That sealed Nixon’s fate.

The Democrats face a similar dilemma with Donald Trump’s VP, Mike Pence. For all his problems, Trump seems to be  ineffective. He makes a lot of noise. But nothing seems to get done. As an example Secretary as is Mattis put off Donald’s ban of transgender’s in the military.

Pence on the other hand, is a dyed in the wool, Bible thumping, blind and dumb conservative. He would be far more effective in working with the GOP leadership and more dangerous to the Democrats. They would have to get rid of Trump and Pence which can most likely only happen if Dems take the Congress in the midterms.

The GOP leadership would love Pence, but they worry about the backlash from the Trump supporters. Those people who prove Lincoln’s: “you can fool some of the people all of the time”.

It remains to be seen. I think there is no one more dangerous to Trump than Trump. He can’t protect himself from himself. His financial and political worlds will unravel with the Russian revelations and Trump’s inability to get out of his own way. Too many people want him gone in America and around the world. He’s damaging the United States. But worse for him he’s forever damaging his brand as the world gets to see more and more of the real Donald Trump.

Impeachment ?

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Impeachment has been on many lips since election night. The specter of impeachment has only been raised and proceeded on three occasions. Congress is 0 and  2 with one default removing presidents in its entire history. No president has been successfully removed. Why? It is not a legal process, it is a political process.

The House impeaches and the Senate tries and acquits or removes the President.

What makes anybody think it’ll be so easy this time. There is no specific definition of the presidency or the scope of it. It’s changed throughout history

What is an impeachable offence? Article II, Section 4 of the Constitution says, “The President, Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other High Crimes and Misdemeanors.”

Although many have weighed in with their opinions, there is no definition of impeachable offence better than,” it is whatever Congress says it is”.

Likewise there is no definition of presidential. Any president’s behavior is by default, presidential. What is acceptable presidential behavior is again up to Congress and certainly influenced by public opinion.

It is questionable whether the transgressions of Andrew Johnson, Richard Nixon, and Bill Clinton, constituted treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors. Johnson was impeached by the House for firing Secretary of War Edwin Stanton and his policies towards reconstruction of the South. Nixon for obstruction of justice, of an irrelevant break in. While contrary to law, it may not have measured up to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors. Bill Clinton was impeached by the House for lying under oath about sexual conduct. Nixon resigned while Johnson and Clinton were impeached by the House and each acquited by one vote in the Senate.

It would seem to me that treason, bribery and high crimes and misdemeanors should relate to the ability to govern and national security. Previous impeachment’s have only served to distract from the business of the American people. A waste of time over conduct which, save and except for the media’s focus, did not impair the president from carrying out his duties, but did impair Congress from doing theirs.

Trumps personal habits and behavior do not fall under my expectations of acceptable presidential behavior. Nonetheless it is so generally harmless, mostly entertaining in a perverse way, and not the main focus of concern. That’s not to say they are not of some concerns. He embarrasses America both at home and in the eyes of the world.

What really concerns me. What is more frightening and dangerous is that right before our very eyes he seems to be bent on unwinding and unraveling or at least viciously attacking, and reversing the social progress we have watched, felt, paid for, and deeply believe in. The GOP has the presidency, Congress, Supreme Court, and a majority of state governors and legislatures. The GOP Congress, for the moment, have restrained him with respect to foreign-policy decisions and costly domestic mistakes. Sometimes deliberately and sometimes by his and their own incompetence.

He has opened a Pandora’s box of the ugly underbelly, lowest common denominator of America. He has created uncertainty and fear in America and throughout the world.

He has disgraced America in the eyes of the world. The view of the international community is that American no longer leads the free world and has as its president an incompetent, embarrassing, disturbed, man-child.

Congress is going to have to face the issue at one time or another. Whether it’s the results of the Russia investigation, the damage he is doing to the reputation of America at home and abroad, or his mental state.

Congress is in their own disarray. In this they can be moved by popular opinion. Once they feel comfortable enough that they have the support of the American people who are fed up with Donald Trump then they will act.

The question is when? If they do it now, they’re afraid of the possible backlash the extent of which is hard to measure. If they don’t do it before the midterms and lose control of Congress, the Democrats will impeach both Trump and Pence, and put the new Democratic Speaker of the House in the White House.

The GOP have to grow a large pair of political balls and remove him from office before he does some damage they can’t mop up.

The Russian Takeover

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We have already lost. Since the fall of communism, America has let down their guard. Communist Russia morphed into the private purview of Vladimir Putin who divided the nation’s wealth amongst his friends.

Citizens United allowed the introduction of large sums of money with little or no accountability as to its source or purpose entering and influence on the American political process.

Russian oligarchs and underworld (perhaps one and the same) have bought their way into the upper echelons of American finance. They have bought assets and loaned money to the greedy in the United States and around the world.

Citizens United also created the best GOP politicians money can buy. I’m sure Russian money whether knowingly or otherwise found its way into the hands of American politicians.

Russia realized that power and influence could be had without firing a shot.

The 2016 election provided a unique opportunity for Vladimir Putin where he allowed himself to be a bit reckless. His interference was palatable. It was the worst kept secret in the history of the world’s intelligence community.

Putin interfered to help Donald Trump because he felt he had some influence based upon evidence of Trump’s financial dealings with Russia and personal behavior. Whether Trump directly and aggressively colluded with Russia or was a willing dupe, his deference to Putin and Russia, clearly speaks to the connection.

The real problem is that Russian influence in the economies and politics of America and the rest of the world, goes far beyond its interference in the American election.

Don’t get me wrong, nothing is more important than removing Donald Trump from the presidency. But that will only be the beginning of dealing with the new Russian reality.

Government is Not a Business

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Donald Trump came to power promising to apply his business experience to running the government. Forget for a moment the realities of his business experience which lack ethics. Consider his modus operandi of using debt and bankruptcy to profit at the expense of the hard-working small businessmen who worked for him. Government is not a business.

The principles of running a business do not apply and do not work in running a government.

In business Trump was the boss. He could do whatever he wanted to do. His only considerations were making money and building his brand. There was little or no room for dissenting opinions. If he didn’t like the job you were doing, you were fired. His only constituency was himself, his family and his businesses.

Government doesn’t have a bottom-line. Healthcare and Education are investments whose success are not measured in dollars and cents. It is measured in the lives that are saved and enhanced. Government is always an exercise in pay it forward. It is measured in the social and scientific advancements which save lives and make lives in the world better.

Government in the free world democracies is a process of balance and compromise. This is not a characteristic often found in running businesses. Government is the process of debating the social and political issues to try and come to a consensus that improves the life of the nation and its citizens.

Government is there to give voice to the disenfranchised. One of the best examples is Lyndon Johnson. His success with Medicaid, his war on poverty, civil rights and voting rights, are proof that government can make a significant difference in people’s lives. if not for Lyndon Johnson it is doubtful that Barack Obama would have become president. Without Lyndon Johnson he may not be able to vote.

Government exists for entirely different reasons than a business. It has different goals, responsibilities, and methods. It success is measured in markedly different ways and with significantly different criteria than a business.

Trump and his administration are clear proof that businessmen are not suited to govern using business principles and methods. It has been a disaster for Trump, America, and the world.

The drama and infighting between Trump and the members of his administration are further proof that you cannot operate as president in the same way you run your own business. The public nature of government is a far cry from the behind closed doors autocratic style which works in business.

Trump clearly does not understand this. American democracy is paying the price. Never in the history of the United States of America has the nation been held in such low esteem by the rest of the world. Not since the Revolutionary war has America faced such a threat to their democracy, as they do today.

Americans have to restore the kind of government that puts the people first. The GOP needs to grow a pair of patriotic balls and take back American democracy.

 

 

 

Trump at the Hall of Presidents

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There has been a lot of debate over what the statue of Donald Trump in the Hall of Presidents at Disney World should say.

Here are a few suggestions:

I want to grab your pussy.

Nobody respects women more than me.

Believe me.

I did not collude with the Russians despite all of the verified evidence to the contrary.

I’m the president, can you believe it.

If she wasn’t my daughter I would date her.

Jeff sessions is a great pick for Atty. Gen.

Jeff sessions is weak.

You’re fired.

Who knew being president would be so difficult.

Mme. Macron, your hot and your husband loves holding hands with me.

Lyin Ted

Crooked Hillary

Mine is bigger and better than yours.

Make America Great Again ( after I’m finished with it)

I am the Greatest. ( apologies to Mohammed Ali)

You’ll win so much you will get tired of winning ( with apologies to Charlie Sheen)

Fake news

I did not collude with that man, Vladimir Putin.

Since I’ve been added to the Hall of Presidents the crowds have been HUGE

I demand loyalty. I just don’t give it.

Sad

On my first day in office we will repeal and replace Obamacare.

I’m going to make you an offer you can’t refuse.

Kiss my ass and I’ll make it worth your while.

I will not disclose my taxes. I have nothing to hide.

I nor anyone in my campaign had any dealings with the Russians except for all dealings that emerge from this witchhunt.

bubble bubble toil and trouble. hocus-pocus.

Stephen Douglas should have stopped World War II.

I have a job. All of my family and friends are working.

 

 

 

The Birth of Tyranny

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I was born in the early 50s. World War II seemed like distant history. In studying the 1930s and 40s I wondered how a Hitler or Mussolini could take over a civilized democracy. Now I know.

Putin certainly helped. Donald Trump found fertile ground in the ugly underbelly of America’s lowest common denominator. Those who stayed home in 2016 allowed Trump and Putin to hijack American democracy.

Trump is behaving like a dictator following the Tyrant’s Handbook for Dummies to the letter. He along with the GOP Congress and Scotus seem bent on reversing and destroying the social and political gains of the last 200 years.

In six months, Trump and the GOP have managed to bring America to its lowest point in  history in the eyes of the world ever. America has given up its leadership of the free world. No longer a beacon for democracy and freedom, America has become a bad and scary joke to the rest of the free world.

The GOP must grow a set of patriotic balls and take back America before it is too late.

The Russians and the Trump

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The media feeding frenzy over Don Junior’s admissions of meeting with Russian’s is  important evidence confirming Russian involvement in the 2016 election. The more important issue is Putin’s power and influence at the very top levels of the American government. Western values are under attack in America and around the World. Trump emulates the totalitarian characteristics of the Russians. The critical concern is the serious damage that Trump and his administration is inflicting on the United States and the World. The Russians have gained a foothold.  The threat to American democracy will be significantly diminished by the impeachment of Donald Trump.

Whether or not the Trump campaign colluded with the Russians had very little to do with the outcome of the election. The Russians did not need Trump’s collusion, or even his knowledge to accomplish what they set out to do. It is hard to believe that Trump knew nothing of the Russian efforts. The depth and extent of his knowledge and involvement  is still in question.

Trump didn’t expect to win and was as surprised as everyone else. He probably woke up on November 9th  thinking, “Wow the KGB are really good”. Given recent history he wouldn’t be wrong. Putin and the KGB hijacked American democracy without ever firing a shot. American Intelligence was either sleeping or not able to stop them.

KGB 1    US Intelligence 0.

Putin had a motive in defeating Hillary Clinton for whom he felt  personal animosity. He also knew that she would be a difficult adversary if elected. Trump presented himself like a lamb to the slaughter.

The electorate was angry at what they perceived to be an entrenched governing class who spent their time on frivolous arguments and obstructionism, lining their pockets and the pockets of their friends. While dancing on the head of a pin, they had little or no time to care about or do something to make people’s lives better. To make America greater. The disparity between the rich and the poor had widened with the middle-class struggling and shrinking.

For Putin it was a perfect storm. Voters angry at the establishment. His target, Hillary Clinton, struggling with an overpowering unpopularity. Best of all he had Trump.  That with the KGB and all the money he needed apparently left America helpless.

Give Trump credit for recognizing the political incorrectness that matched the issues his supporters saw as a reason for their personal circumstances. They wanted and needed somebody to blame. Trump’s threats of action, building a wall and deporting immagrants, was just what they wanted to hear. Trump opened a Pandora’s Box of the ugly underbelly of America. Spewing hate and fear he trashed and threatened the people that his supporters blamed and feared.

The Russian efforts including, cyber and public relations attacks and hacks, targeted spending, and any other forms of interference, the extent of which which we are not  and may never be aware Combined with the Trump lit match tossed carelessly on the gasoline of hate and fear. Add Hillary Clinton’s  driving the Democrats into a shell all made Donald J Trump, President of the United States of America.

The only one who probably wasn’t surprised was Vladimir Putin. He had defeated Hillary. Trumps gratitude for the election may or may not work in Putin’s favour. Unless of course he has something else on Trump.

Trump has been to Russia. The extent of his political and business contacts there is unknown to the public. There certainly could be video recordings of Donald Trump engaging in “alternative” sex acts with what Vladimir Putin bragged were the best prostitutes in the world. He certainly appeared to speak with some authority. Trump is a misogynist with a deviant personality. He’s rich and used to getting or taking what he wants. It is not a stretch to imagine a man who brags about grabbing pu**y and sexual assault would get caught in such a situation. From observing his life and tweets he seems to lack the restraint which would govern most of us. Trump would claim they were “fake” and his supporters, no matter how accurate the video, would jump to his defence.

Another reason would give Putin confidence that he can influence the president. Trump and his familie’s financial dealings in Russia. The only thing Trump likes more than pu**y is money. There certainly seems to be smoke in the direction of the Trump familie’s financial involvement with Russia. One thing is certain. Whatever they’re doing, Putin and the Russian Mafia, (Putin’s enforcers) are involved. Whatever their entanglements investments and obligations it is certainly clear how that could influence Donald Trump.

The evidence supporting this comes from Donald Trump himself. Throughout the campaign to his recent meeting, he has shown a deference to Putin never before  seen or expressed by an American president. An alpha male, like Trump, with the power of the presidency and America behind him should be showing that strength and confidence, not behaving like an obedient lapdog.

The real troubling part of Trump is that he has quickly picked up the totalitarian conduct which cannot help but make one fearful for American democracy. The lack of transparency is a page right out of the Totalitarian Handbook for Dummies,( a gift from Vlad). Press conferences with no video and/or sound. A meeting in the Oval Office with Russians and Russian press when the American press are excluded. He uses the excuse that he doesn’t want to telegraph what he’s thinking. Forgetting for a moment that the telegraph operator is working overtime on his tweets, America and the world need some stability and predictability. He is destabilizing the world, but not in a good way.

The most frightening aspect of the Trump administration is its attack on the Free Press. Fox and Friends definitely speaks for the right. MSNBC and CNN have the perspective from the middle to the left. Trumps dealing with the press is nothing short of an attempt to impose his will and destroy his opposition. This while his press minions go out daily and perpetuate their masters lies while their noses grow before us.

Misogynist, pathological liar, corrupt, ruthless, shallow, are some of the words to describe Donald Trump and his administration. Are these impeachable offences? If they were  there would have been a lot of impeached presidents. An impeachable offence is whatever Congress says it is.

Trump should be removed from office because he is incapable and unfit for office. He is embarrassing America and destroying the economic and social justice gains of the last  100 years.

And to those who say that this is all just sour grapes for a lost election, open your eyes and ears. It is not just the Democrats who are standing up in horror at what this man is doing to their country, but the world. The entire world’s climate, economy and safety are threatened.  We, wherever we live are all citizens of the world. He is meeting resistance because he is pushing against the weight of the history of social and economic justice. He can damage it, but he can’t reverse it.

The Congress of the United States of America owes it to the Founding Fathers whose hope was to build a nation where something like this could not happen. They owe it to themselves as representatives of the American people they represent and serve. And, they owe it to the World with whom America must coexist.

They owe it to the future.