THE NORTH KOREA MESS(Posted May 26, 2018)
With the North Korea situation, Donald Trump had an opportunity for the first time to demonstrate his “deal-making skills”. So let’s review his effort.
First, he hires a war monger , John Bolton, as his National Security Advisor. Mr Bolton, fresh off his success in advocating the invasion of Iraq, immediately suggests that we should deal with the North Korean problem based on the “Libya model”.
This means that leader Kim can assume we are promoting the idea of an overthrow of his regime and his being dragged through the streets of Pyongyang and dismembered. Does anyone believe that will get Kim to the negotiating table?
Mr. Trump then offers yet another absurdity. He cancels the June summit in a letter to Kim, at the conclusion of which he suggests that he(Trump) is willing to reschedule the meeting if at any time he(Kim) “changes his mind”. It would seem that Trump is the one who needs to change his mind.
So it is clear that the great negotiator’s skills don’t measure up to the needs of the job. Even worse, we must realize that Donald Trump is the only thing standing between us and nuclear war.
THE CONSTITUTION IN PERIL(Posted May 26, 2018)
Recent discussions with regard to the difficulty women with problem pregnancies are having when they attempt to get treatment at Catholic hospitals is disconcerting for a variety of reasons.
In the cases reported, as one might expect, this is about abortion. There are instances being reported where these hospitals are actually turning away patients in crisis which is in violation of Federal law.
On the surface this may seem like a localized issue; but in reality it has to do with something much greater and far more dangerous. It began with the Religious Freedom Protection Act of 1993, which sought simply to protect individual freedom of religious expression.
In reality this has led to a plethora of blatant acts of discrimination. With support from the far right extremes of the Republican Party and encouragement of the Trump administration, we now see some extreme interpretations and implementations of the 1993 law.
The Catholic hospital problem is just the beginning of a sinister movement. A bakery that makes wedding cakes can refuse to serve a gay couple because their “lifestyle offends the owner’s religious sensitivities”. How far does that go? Might it now be possible that this same cake maker can refuse to sell to a person if that person’s skin color offends his/her religious sensitivities?
We need to consider the consequences of this. We have created an environment whereby it is possible for a person to exercise his/her rights by denying the rights of others.
It is doubtful that this is what the Founders intended.
THE CASE FOR REMOVING DONALD TRUMP FROM OFFICE(Posted May 30, 2018)
Anyone who has followed closely the Trump administration’s progress since inauguration must at this point be concerned as to whether Donald J. Trump is fit to hold the most important position in the world. There are, of course, many differing opinions about this but what is needed is a thorough examination of the evidence. The following represents a compilation of just some of his transgressions.
He fired the FBI Director, James Comey, who was leading an investigation into the Russian interference in our 2016 election, including whether the Trump campaign had any involvement in that effort. His daily tweets about “no collusion with Russia” lead one to the inevitable conclusion that he has something to hide, i.e., a cover-up. Question: Is this not obstruction of justice?
Russian interference in the 2016 election.
Trump has shown no inclination to investigate what Russia might have done in the election, and has even denied it happened. Question: Is this not dereliction of duty of the highest order?
Alienation of Allies and Friends.
He has incurred a great deal of ill will in Great Britain such that he has not been allowed to make a state visit. Further, he has withdrawn from the Paris accord on climate, reneged on the Iran agreement as well as the Trans-Pacific Partnership, is hell-bent on renegotiating NAFTA while insulting Haiti, El Salvador and all of Africa (shit-hole countries). Question: Does this not jeopardize our National Security?
He insults friends and foes alike; uses profanity in his public speeches and has a sordid history with regard to sexual predation. Question: Is this the kind of example from the President that we want for ourselves and our progeny?
He lies with impunity, violates the emoluments clause of the Constitution, has highly questionable personal finances (Dealings with an outlaw (Deutsche)Bank, refuses to reveal his income taxes) and projects an unstable personality (constant shuffling of his legal advisors, flip/flop views on Steve Bannon, dealings with North Korea). He has also hired his daughter and son-in-law and put them in positions such that they are, at taxpayer expense, enriching themselves by virtue of the contacts they are able to make as a result of the governmental offices/titles they hold. Question: Is this the kind of person we can trust to lead the nation?
Administration staffers have been operating without the proper security clearances (Trump himself, Trump, Jr., Jared Kushner, Rob Porter). Several attempts have been made to establish a “back-channel” form of communication with Russia (Kushner efforts with the Russian embassy, the meeting in the Seychelles attended by Erik Prince and George Nader). Question: Why have we not been informed about these activities?
He refers to all immigrants as “animals”, something less than human. He treats them in a disrespectful manner, separating children from parents and subjecting them to hideous conditions of confinement and forbids immigration from certain countries. Question: Is this not a form of ethnic cleansing/genocide by another name?
Institutions at risk.
Trump does not understand or appreciate the importance of the institutions that under-gird our system of government. In fact, he goes out of his way to marginalize and ignore the role they play in our daily lives. He attacks the free press, criticizes the judiciary, is at odds with the intelligence community and suggests that the FBI is an outlaw organization. Question: Can this American democracy or any democracy survive such an assault on its fundamental institutions?
Federal government disorganization.
He has steadfastly refused to fill vital cabinet and other critical components of the Federal Government. For example, no ambassador to South Korea has been appointed. Thus Trump has built no relationship upon which to negotiate for a solution to the problems on the Korean peninsula. Question: Can our democracy exist with a government that is not fully functioning?
He is flattered by the attention he gets from autocrats like Putin, Duterte, Erdogan, XI and is inclined to forsake relationships with allies such as Merkel, Macron and May. Question: Are Trump’s priorities in line with our needs as a nation?
In the Charlottesville Virginia episode last year, Trump went out of his way to appease the KKK, the white supremacists, the neo-Nazis and the anti-Semites. Question: Is the President of the United States a racist?
Thus the conclusion about his removal is clear! Trump must go – now! The longer we wait the more damage he does. If we fail to act, we will only have ourselves to blame for we will have become the “enablers” of the misery called TRUMP! Failure to act now will reveal an undeniable truth: THE PROBLEM IS NOT TRUMP, IT’S US!
THE GREAT KAVANAUGH DEBATE(Posted September 22,2018)
The GOP is pushing forward to get nominee Kavanaugh confirmed at all costs, whereas the accuser simply wants and is asking for “fairness”.
“Fairness” would seem to require an investigation to determine insofar as possible any and all facts that would lead to an appropriate conclusion on the matter. This would provide assurance to the Judiciary committee, the Congress and the American people that everything has been done to preserve and protect the well-being and reputation of the Supreme Court of the United States.
Given all of that, it is mystifying that the nominee himself has not insisted that this be done. As with Trump and the Mueller investigation, one can only wonder why, if Brett Kavanaugh is innocent, he hasn’t spoken out about this because it would go a long way toward solving the impasse.
Again, as with Trump, his silence only lends credence to the charges being leveled against him.