Monday, September 24, 2018
How many times did you hear people say they voted for Trump because they believed he would “shake things up?” Well, those people got their wish! Or, perhaps you got your wish. Our country and our government are certainly all shook up, almost to the extent it is not recognizable. If you listened to the news even once last week, you know this is true.
OTHERS HAVE said they wanted Trump to “drain the swamp.” What those people failed to understand, some things in a swamp is essential for balance. Plus, I don’t think they meant for him to drain the good, leave the bad, or replace the good with the bad.
OTHERS BELIEVED him when he said, “I will hire only the best people.” As of today, thirty-five people have either been fired or forced out from the White House and Cabinet level positions. We have no way of knowing how many lower tier employees have been forced out. From relationships with Russia,spending abuses, spousal abuse, the reasons for the employees leaving are myriad. Throw in the fact that his Campaign Manager and his “fixer” attorney are going to prison, you get the picture that Trump has no idea how to choose the “best people.” You can’t be that wrong about that many people.
EITHER TRUMP cannot judge character, or, he likes only the people he feels share his own shady characteristics. He must be attracted to them by some kind of pheromone. That’s why when he spent last week saying, “I know Brett Kavanaugh. He’s a good man. The best. Straight out of central casting,” Further, Trump said, “He has vehemently denied doing this,” I had to chuckle. Obviously, Trump thinks if you deny, that’s all it takes. Of course, he does. You don’t know a person from just two job interviews. You’re lucky to even know a person after years of marriage. You think you know your children but you never really know all the things they do.
THE WORST thing about Trump’s adamant defense of Kavanaugh, I know in my heart of hearts that even if Kavanaugh did try to rape Dr. Ford, that would be acceptable to Trump. The only thing that would make Trump admire him more would be if he had succeeded. Trump has made his position clear that he does not like losers, only winners. I will also add that if this happened the way Dr. Ford said it did, the only reason the rape was not successful was because of what she was wearing—a one-piece bathing suit under her clothes. Ladies, you know you squeeze into those suits and you almost have to cut yourself out of them. If I had a teenage girl today, I would require that as mandatory attire.
ON THURSDAY (?) we’re scheduled to meet and hear from Kavanaugh and Dr. Ford. It’s like reading a book when you already know the ending. Not a single Republican has met Dr. Ford, or heard her story. Yet, Mitch McConnell says he has the votes to confirm Kavanaugh and assures us that no matter what happens, Brett Kavanaugh will be on the United States Supreme Court, where he will make decisions that shape our country for fifty years. In my humble opinion, this is one situation where if there is a doubt over whom to believe, then Brett Kavanaugh must not be confirmed.
HAVING SAID all that, late Sunday a classmate from Yale has emerged with a new allegation against Kavanaugh. Deborah Ramirez contacted Republicans on the Judiciary Committee last week and shared the sexual misconduct by Kavanaugh when he was freshman. That’s interesting since Chairman Grassley and others had this information last week, yet they were insisting on fast-tracking the hearing so they could hold the vote on Kavanaugh. Information has also been revealed that a third woman has come forward.
WE’RE IN for a wild ride with this confirmation. It’s evolving by the hour. Whatever the outcome, it will further divide our country. As one who loves old sayings, I have one for you for this occasion. Once is a mistake. Twice is pattern. Three times is a habit.
Monday, September 10, 2018
Parables are great teaching tools, meant to make people think. This very old parable has been on my mind. With the advent of last week’s distressing developments concerning the President and crisis after crisis facing our country, this parable should speak to all of us.
The Parable of the Flood
A MAN was trapped in his house during a flood. He began praying to God to rescue him. The water started to rise in his house. His neighbor urged him to leave and offered him a ride to safety. The man yelled back, “I am waiting for God to save me.” The neighbor drove off in his pick-up truck.
THE MAN continued to pray. As the water began rising in his house, he had to climb up to the roof. A boat came by with some people heading for safe ground. They yelled at the man to grab a rope they were ready to throw and take him to safety. He told them that he was waiting for God to save him. They shook their heads and moved on.
THE MAN continued to pray, believing with all his heart that he would be saved by God. The flood waters continued to rise. A helicopter flew by and a voice came over a loudspeaker offering to lower a ladder and take him off the roof. The man waved the helicopter away, shouting back that he was waiting for God to save him. The helicopter left. The flooding water came over the roof and caught him up and swept him away. He drowned.
WHEN HE reached heaven and asked, “God, why did you not save me? I believed in you with all my heart. Why did you let me drown?” God replied, “I sent you a pick-up truck, a boat and a helicopter and you refused all of them. What more were you looking for?
I HAVE been inspired to write my own parable.
The Parable of Trumpism
A MAN was elected President of the United States with a margin of 80,000 votes over three states, winning him the electoral college, even though his opponent received 2.8 million more votes than he did. This man was known as an amoral, rich, braggart, unstable, narcissist who had more stink on him than a tumble bug. But he talked a good game, and with the help of his Russian friends, he fooled enough people to move into the oval office.
IMMEDIATELY, this man, with only 36% of the country behind him, began a systematic assault on the foundation this country was built on—Democracy. This man craved to be an autocrat, answering to no one but himself. His drive to achieve this status led him to make decisions that made America weak. The entire government was dysfunctional and the White House was like a mental ward on speed.
FAST FORWARD a few years. Due to the big tax cuts to the rich and deficit spending, the economy began to spiral down. While the man continued insisting the economy was the greatest ever, his trade wars decimated farmers and a food shortage followed. Subsequently, the cost of goods sky-rocketed and those not rich fell further into poverty. Deficit spending escalated, and foreign governments and investors were no longer willing to take a chance with lending to a weak government. All safety net programs for the elderly and poor were abolished due to insolvency. He slapped China’s face and they own us.
THE MAN used the Federal law enforcement system as his personal gestapo to punish political and personal foes. He detained immigrants and separated parents from their children.
THE MAN unfit to be President became a man with unchecked power. Trump TV, aka Fox News, became a full-time propaganda machine and our only media source. The man proclaimed that, “I, and I alone can save you.” People stopped voting due to the complete loss of integrity of our election process, and unchecked interference from foreign and domestic powers. That is when Democracy died!
THOSE THAT didn’t survive due to unsafe drinking water, polluted air, less safety regulations at work, no health insurance, and living in poverty, died and went to heaven.
WHEN THEY arrived, they asked God, “Why didn’t you save us from that man?”
GOD SAID, “I sent you the Access Hollywood tapes. I sent you 4 national security leaders that represented 17 intelligence agencies. I sent you Stormy Daniels and countless other women. I sent you Michael Wolff’s book Fire and Fury. I sent you Robert Woodward’s book, “Fear.” I sent you a letter written by a White House official. I sent you Robert Mueller. What more did you need?
Monday, September 3, 2018
Last week was a week of death. We lost two great Americans, Aretha Franklin and John McCain. This week will follow suit if Brett Kavanaugh is nominated to the Supreme Court. It will be the death of our confidence in the highest court in our country--the court that issues decisions that determine the quality of our lives. It will be the death of non-partisan decisions made from that bench. It will be the death of laws that women fought tirelessly for years to achieve- Roe v. Wade. It will be the death of laws that minorities should not have had to fight for- Affirmative Action and Social Justice. It will also be the death of the balance of the Supreme Court.
FOR SEVENTY YEARS, the Supreme Court has been a balance of 4 liberals, 4 conservatives, and a swing vote that could go either way. Because of this fairness, we may not have agreed with their decision, but we knew it was not done for political reasons. With Kavanaugh on the bench, there will be 5 conservatives and 4 liberals. No swing voter. Decisions will be very predictable. Remember, the Supreme Court can give us rights AND take them away!
BRETT KAVANAUGH is an extreme conservative Republican nominee. His decisions as an Appellate Judge proves that to be a true statement. There’s much more evidence out there that gives clear insight into how Kavanaugh thinks, but the White House has claimed Executive Privilege and will not release over 100,000 documents created when he worked for George Bush. He was responsible for finding and vetting candidates for Federal Judgeships. Many of his candidates were extreme and not appointed. By hiding these documents, it begs the question, what are they hiding? Never in history has Executive Privilege been invoked for a nominee.
THE NOMINATION process for Kavanaugh has been accelerated. What’s the big hurry? Here’s why. Trump is about to bump heads with Mueller. It’s imperative for Trump to have Kavanaugh on the bench when that happens. Kavanaugh stated in his nominating process to the Appellate Court that “we should not burden a president with a criminal investigation.” He also said the Court may have erred when they ruled that Nixon had to turn over the tapes, which led to his resignation. How do you think he will vote when Mueller issues Trump a subpoena to testify to a Grand Jury? Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s brilliant attorney, has stated they will fight it to the highest court. That’s why Trump needs Kavanaugh. How do you think he will vote if Mueller seeks an indictment of Trump? That’s why Trump needs Kavanaugh. What if Trump pardons himself? That’s why Trump needs Kavanaugh.
THIS WEEK, as we sit through Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing, he will face a tough grilling by Democrats, and soft-ball questions by Republicans. Senators will “perform” for the cameras, making more statements than questions. Kavanaugh will be evasive and never clearly answer a question. He will say, “I rule in accordance with the Constitution.” He will have a crafted statement for every conceivable question. However, in 2006 at his Appellate Court nomination proceeding, he lied to the Committee and this lie got him confirmed. He said he had no knowledge of Bush’s torture policy and treatment of detainees. One year later, it was revealed that he, indeed, was part of a very contentious debate on that policy. He has shown us who he is and we should believe him.
I THINK the odds that Kavanaugh will be confirmed by this very partisan, Trump lovin’ Senate are strong. This will be a country-changing event. We only have to endure Trump for two more years. A Supreme Court Justice serves for life and there’s not a dang thing anyone can do about it.
LOOK FOR Trump to do something (else) outrageous this week to take the world’s eyes off these confirmation hearings. Whatever it is, I have lost my ability to be surprised.