TRUMPED UP CHARGES

Unreasonable Force & American Justice

As members of the baby boomer generation, we learned that peaceful protesting was part of our great country. We had a soundtrack that played in our brains as we marched against the Vietnam War and the astonishing illegal polices of Presidents Johnson and Nixon. Yes, there were fatalities, at Kent State University and Jackson State and 58,220 soldier deaths in Vietnam. We always knew ours was a just cause driven by the love of democracy.

There were a few songs that some said went too far. One of them was Peace Frog by the Los Angeles band The Doors. Some interpreted the lyrics as police brutality against protesters. Doors lead singer Jim Morrison was arrested in 1967 in New Haven, Connecticut and charged with inciting a riot, indecency and public obscenity. A year later, Chicago Mayor Richard Daley deployed 12,000 city police officers and called in another 15,000 state and federal officers to contain protesters at the Democratic National Convention. The situation then rapidly spiraled out of control, with the policemen severely beating and gassing not only the crowd but news people and doctors as well. The DNC event was completely covered on TV, and when we heard the lyrics of Peace Frog we knew they had to about us.

The lyrics: “There’s blood in the streets, it’s up to my ankles… There’s blood on the streets, it’s up to my knee… Blood on the streets in the town of Chicago…… Blood in the streets in the town of New Haven. Blood stains the roofs and the palm trees of Venice, Blood in my love in the terrible summer, Bloody red sun of Phantastic L.A.” Today, are we moving forward or are we repeating history?

When a minority community feels that American justice is based on the color of one’s skin rather than the national creed “All men are created equal,” we have a problem.

A bad president will always make things worse. When Richard Nixon was faced with massive anti-war protests, he discussed using the Teamsters Union to beat up college kids. Because Nixon taped his Oval Office meetings, we learned about a 1971 conversation in which John Haldeman (Nixon’s Chief of Staff) suggested, “I think that they can get away with this–do it with the Teamsters. Just ask them to dig up those, their eight thugs.” Nixon agreed to a plan to beat up protesters, it’s all true, and the word “thugs” was used.

President Nixon condemned those who threw eggs and stones at his limousine in San Jose as “a thousand haters,” and said the time had come when “appeasement of the thugs and hoodlums” in American society must end. When Nixon called a bunch of white college kids “thugs and hoodlums” the white conservatives and labor unions backed him. As I’m sure you remember, Nixon resigned after it was revealed he was involved in a break-in of the Watergate headquarters of the Democratic National Party and a coverup of that crime. Now, we have Trump.

The recent unrest in Minneapolis expanded to major rioting, looting and burning. At 1:00 AM, the inner bigot in Donald Trump tweeted, “These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts.I added the boldening. The expression wasn’t a Trump original, once again the Donald has dipped into history for his threat of violence. Even though he claimed he doesn’t remember where the slogan came from, he never acknowledged the racist trope embedded in same.

The phrase was first used by Miami Police Chief Walter Headley in 1967. He promoted police brutality as a deterrent to street crime when he pitched his department’s “crackdown on … slum hoodlums.” It was a threat in 1967 and it is STILL a threat of violence in 2020. Today, Trump not only threatens shooting protesters, but also unleashing “vicious dogs” and “ominous weapons,” on those who surrounded the White House. Now, that is close to home.

Twitter’s management has decided that Trump’s tweet is in violation of their policies. Twitter’s response came fast, “This Tweet violated the Twitter Rules about glorifying violence.” They put their warning in a gray box that hides Trump’s tweet from public view unless a user clicks to see it. In a way, it’s a “let the buyer beware” notice, but some experts believe more will read the “fact-checked” posting.

I know all too well how much pain, death and division President Nixon caused this nation. His words, policies and attitudes were completely out of sync with the growing population of us baby boomers. We forced Richard Nixon out of office, and it’s now time to do the same to Donald Trump.

Nixon Leaves White House

After massive civil unrest, authorities often attempt to create an US and THEM scenario. The President and State Attorney General are already saying that the protesters are “outside agitators” who were “organized.” We have all been here before, just as Politico has pointed out.

This was Richard Nixon’s routine and Trump and his buddies are now trying it on for size. I ask now, just like I did in the late sixties, “Where are these ‘professional paid protestors’ from? Who is paying them, some external force?”  Why can’t our so-called leaders just admit that the countrywide protests were motivated by the brutal police killing of an unarmed African American in Minnesota? Yes, anyone with a cell phone and presence on a social media platform can ORGANIZE A MARCH. However, when mayors, governors and local police say that the locals don’t like what is happening, they imply and bolster a narrative that all protests are just invasion from outside their borders, thus reinforcing the US and THEM theme.

This isn’t about “Black Lives Matter” or “Blue Lives Matter,” this is about AMERICA. This is about our democracy and life, liberty and the pursuit of justice. Trump is just another broke-Dick Nixon and he’s not worthy of the office of President of the United States. He must be removed by Congress, or the 25th Amendment, perhaps another Impeachment, but most certainly by our votes. If he refuses to leave the White House, he should be removed by force. He’s not above the law and his actions, policies and executive orders prove he truly is America’s #1 THUG!

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


NUMBERS DON’T LIE

Trump’s Pandemic Without a Party

Well, we have made it to the end of another dreadful week. The TV is blaring that more than 100,000 Americans have died by COVID and 40 million people are without a job. We have a black man, George Floyd, in Minneapolis murdered by police and riots in the streets. Donald John Trump’s journey to the November election now consists of nothing but lying, manipulating and screaming. Let me answer that age-old political question; no, we are not better off than we were four years ago. The numbers don’t lie and Trump’s meaningless pitch that everything would get better fast didn’t prevent death, keep folks working or pay the bills. He has not made life better for the millions of us waiting for a solution.

President Cuomo

It would be different if Trump was living in a vacuum without an example of how to act in a pandemic, but he sees only through the lens of politics. He is so much more partisan than all the previous presidents of my life. All Trump has to do is watch New York Governor Andrew Cuomo to see how a true leader handles communication, facts and empathy, every day. Trump automatically disregards anyone not in his party. The COVID-19 virus has no political party.

Our glowing orange President always wants to be right. Even when an idea is totally dangerous, harmful and untrue, it doesn’t matter. He will just say it. No one is there to correct him, censor him or nudge him in the right direction. To prove this point, Trump keeps referring to the last major virus outbreak in the United States as happening in 1917. It was called the Spanish Flu, and it raged from 1918 to 1920. It was caused by an H1N1 virus with genes of avian origin. At least 50 million people worldwide died, with 675,000 deaths occurring in the United States. In 1918, the year that the flu was discovered, it is believed to have killed Donald Trump’s grandfather. If our president can’t get that one year right, how can anyone depend on him for any guidance or wisdom?

Donald Trump knows that opening the country early means more people will die. The man claims to care about the grief that this virus has caused, but he lies. He cares only about money, the economy and his reelection. That is the truth. There are many powerful and rich people in America who endorse Trump’s actions and want to let the coronavirus run its course. What does that mean? There is no difference between this attitude of people being expendable and what Timothy McVie said about the children who were killed by his bomb in Oklahoma City. He called them “collateral damage,” and while you might think this is a harsh comparison, death is death and numbers don’t lie.

When Trump said he takes no responsibility for what is happening during this pandemic, I and many others got extremely pissed off. One of the latest media reports, which has the ring of truth, is that Trump has been stomping around the White House wallowing in despair repeating the words, “Why is this happening to me?” I can hear him say it, not because of my political leanings but simply because it sounds exactly like something he would say. I’m willing to wager that he will eventually say it in public. He claims to be the most transparent US president ever but hasn’t released documents Congress requested for their oversight responsibilities. He says he is rich and totally successful but broke the 40-year tradition of candidates releasing their tax returns. He’s hiding something. I don’t care about his wealth; I just want to know who’s involved in his financial dealings.

This global pandemic was never taken seriously by Trump and his “Yes” men and women in the administration. Dr. Fauci and Dr. Birx were valuable reality checks, but just as we predicted, the President has thrown them aside for actions and words that please his base but don’t cure the disease or soothe the soul of America. Today, he tweeted again, a horribly violent threat to African Americans. He published, on both the official White House Twitter account and his personal account, the words, “… when the looting starts, the shooting will start.” This Tweet Threat was quickly given a warning and admonishment from Jack Dorsey. How can we ever take Trump seriously.

Predictably, we are seeing COVID cases and death going up in those states where people have listened more to Trump than to the experts. This makes it more Trump’s pandemic and shows his inability to be patient and wait for medical and scientific plans to cure the virus. A sad, terrible and tragic aspect of these deaths is that minorities, people with pre-existing conditions and the elderly are being hit hardest. With their lack of mask wearing and reduced social distancing, Trump loyalists will soon be added to that list. What kind of leader sends citizens of his nation into danger? We all will have to pay for this disregard of experts’ advice.

When the Trump sycophants talk about the origins of the COVID-19 virus, they refer to the “Chinese Communist Party” as the evil doer. They are trying to brand the virus as the product of a political party. Trump has tried to blame Obama and the Democrats for the virus, but that ludicrous digression waters down the anti-communist plot constructed by the Neo-Cons in Congress. Donald Trump is bouncing from one idea to the next without a clear, consistent plan. When the press criticizes his administration for not being clear and factual, Trump just blasts out another lie or distraction.

People are dying. People have died. More than 100,000 people have succumbed to this evil virus. There are more and more people who do not trust in Trump. They want answers but all Trump offers is a loyalty oath. If you believe in me, don’t wear a mask. If you are with me, go out into the sun and take back your freedom. If you are backing me you don’t need a federal plan, just pretend that the virus cannot hurt you. With this idiotic advice, Trump also says if virus deaths increase, he will not shut down the economy. It’s perfectly clear that he cares more about money than the pain of Americans.

When more than 600,000 men died in the Civil War, it was to resolve the sin of slavery and to unite the nation. The death was terrible and maybe taught us that we are stronger when we are together, united. What is happening in Minneapolis and around the country with African American protests, have we really cured the divide? It’s Trump fault we aren’t getting closer to that ideal.

When 675,000 people died between 1918 and 1920, we didn’t know what to do. Our medical knowledge and technologies weren’t effective against that curse. What we should learn from that pandemic is it brought three distinct waves of infections and death. We thought it was over but it kept coming back, thus the high number of deaths. Trump thinks it took place in 1917, a year with no deaths, because the virus hadn’t arrived on our shores yet. I hate to say it again, but TRUMP IS THE WRONG MAN FOR THE JOB. The sooner he leaves the White House, the safer America will be.

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


ABUSE OF POWER

Letting Trump Be Trump

Many Trumpers use the term, “Let Trump Be Trump,” and Corey Lewandowski, along with David Bossie, titled their 2017 book with that exact advice. The aphorism is like the well-worn “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it,” while many modern visionaries say, “Break it, rebuild it and make it better.” In the last decade, more than a few millionaires preached, “Disruption can make you better.”

Here’s a great quote from the book The Traitor Prince by C.J. Redwine, “Power is neither good nor evil. It just is. It’s what people do with power that matters.”

Every American should be deeply concerned about Donald John Trump’s war against freedom and truth. I have never liked the expression “Let Trump Be Trump” because of its cloaked meaning. That construct is often used when someone is so good at what he or she does, they don’t need to play by the rules. When Babe Ruth was drunk or late for a game they would say, “He’s the Babe!”

We don’t need to let Trump do anything; he’s the President of the United States and we have in writing his responsibilities and duties. There’s no mystery here. His lack of cooperation with Congress’ oversight duties is appalling. Be careful, however, before you turn to history to understand what’s happening. The words “dictator” and “king” have been printed in hundreds of newspapers thousands of times referring to a US president. Even George Washington, the first president, was under the microscope by a watchful free press that kept reminding him of his un-royal status.

Donald John Trump is more blowhard and less a solid thinker or credible leader. You know that I am not a big fan of Twitter management, but I may have an ally in Trump when it comes to social media censorship. Donald lost it when challenged by a new Twitter policy of adding fact checking footnotes to his posts. Twitter’s management believes some of what the President says is misleading. Ironically, he went on a tweet storm protesting this action, which only gives more power to Twitter.

In the Trump Executive Order, he suggests, “A small handful of social media monopolies controls a vast portion of all public and private communications in the United States. They’ve had unchecked power to censor, restrict, edit, shape, hide, alter, virtually any form of communication between private citizens and large public audiences.” Trump continued, “This practice is fundamentally un-American and anti-democratic. When large, powerful social media companies censor opinions with which they disagree, they exercise a dangerous power.” He’s not going to prevail, but will Twitter back down? And Mr. Big Pants, you do know that “censorship” is un-American in every sense of the word.

Now, this toothless screed won’t do anything other than getting the press all crazy and giving talk shows some material. And, might I remind you, this is happening in the middle of a pandemic that has seriously impacted America. Mr. Trump is not using this battle with Twitter to create empathy. It’s a ploy to take the spotlight off one hundred thousand dead Americans and 40 million US citizens who are now out of work. What a guy!

Because of Dumbo Donnie’s outbursts and cries of “unfair,” you’ll be hearing discussion about Section 230, a provision tucked into the Communications Decency Act (CDA) of 1996. Most internet providers thought it wasn’t much more than a definition, or guideline. In fact, this stipulation came about to protect record companies from recording artist lawsuits claiming lack of control. In fact, the implications go far beyond the original intention.

The Electronics Media Foundation, a non-profit watchdog that focuses on free speech, privacy, transparency and security in electronic media, has a great article on their website about Section 230. It contains this clause, “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.”

This means that online intermediaries that host or republish speech are protected against libel and defamation suits. This protection is needed because social media sites are not legally classified as publishers, but rather conduits to distribute content. You can’t sue the trucking company that delivers the newspaper containing libelous statements about you. Instead, you need to go after the author and publisher of the content.

Trump is contending that he is being treated poorly and that the factual information Twitter is adding to his posts will interfere with the upcoming election. Maybe now he understands what the Russians accomplished in the 2016 presidential election. Took him a while.

The speaker or publisher of the Facebook and Twitter posts that helped Trump get elected in 2016 were the product of a Russian disinformation campaign, and those bad actors have been charged in court. Trump cannot ignore this fact, his actions against social media today prove his fear of the power of these platforms.

Trump claimed to be the law and justice candidate, but once in power he changed laws to help his friends and cronies. Now, he’s taking a whack at the First Amendment. He used the First Amendment last week to justify his demand that all the churches, temples and mosques open their doors. This week, his fight with Twitter, is just another insecure reaction to being caught in a lie. We all know that press and publicity are Trump’s oxygen, if he doesn’t get enough, he’ll die.

When a newspaper publishes a faulty story, mistake or typo, it will typically print a correction in a future edition admitting the error. Adding background material to anyone’s tweet is a publisher duty and an attempt to correct misleading information. By doing this, one could argue that Twitter is taking responsibility for what is published by their users. This changes their definition.

When Twitter added the fact-check footnote to Trump’s post, they were acting as an editor of the content. Because of their power and influence, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and others there have taken the responsibility to correct a lie. They don’t do that for every tweet, so this it’s clear this action is being taken for only one guy, Donald Trump. They never added a footnote to any of my tweets, and as much as I would like all social media to be wide open, we must ask the question, “What happens when it hurts someone or affects an election?”

Nick Johnson, a rather outspoken FCC commissioner (1966-1973), used to quote an old Scottish saying, “Let me control the writer of the songs of a nation, and I care not who writes its laws.” In today’s world, let me control what people say on social media and I might be able to influence the way people vote. It’s dangerous either way, but somewhere in the rubble can we pull one, simple truth from the ash and breathe life into it? Without truth, democracy dies.

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


A PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE

Trump’s Big Lies & Little Tweets

Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m a sucker for a good marketing phrase or slogan. Words have always been more dependable than people in my life. When listening to the radio today, I heard a commercial for Lexus, the luxury car manufacturer. It was one of those recently produced spots that focus on how we find ourselves during the COVID-19 pandemic. The ad urged listeners to access their special website. The hook is “People First” and I thought, yeah, that is exactly where our focus should be. Suddenly, a bell clanged loudly in my head.

Donald Trump pitched himself as the president who would put “America First.” It has a nice ring to it, but it is far from an original idea. The phrase was used by Charles Lindbergh in 1941, while he was touring the US as the leading voice of the “America First” Committee — an isolationist group of some 800,000 members who claimed England was trying to drag America into a war. Not only was Lindbergh a known racist, history has shown that his isolationist and anti-global policies would have given Europe, and perhaps even Russia, to Hitler. He was proposing an alliance with Germany during World War II.

Ronald Regan’s 1980 Presidential campaign used the slogan “Let’s make America great again.” Reagan masterfully exploited the anger in the US over crime increases in the inner cities and the happenings in Iran during Carter’s administration. A group of Iranian college students who supported the Iranian Revolution took over the US Embassy in Tehran. The US hostages were held for 444 days and were finally released after Reagan took office.

Trump saw the loss of American jobs to offshore production centers had fired up the long simmering resentment of workers in this country. He also utilized the apparent racist reaction to the African American president who preceded him. The Donald was instrumental in starting a conspiracy theory that Obama was not born in America, therefore not eligible to be president. Trump appropriated the slogan “Let’s Make America Great Again” and “America First” from the past. Most intelligent and aware US citizens believe Trump’s thinking is regressive and backward-looking. Trump has zero ability to solve the problems we face. Complaining about a challenge is NOT delivering a result.

The final line of the opening remarks at the Lexus website reads, “During good times and bad, when we take care of people first, the rest will follow.” It’s a standard car dealer pitch, but it contains a clear message. Mankind, or the people of the earth, are indeed an isolated group. As of this writing, we don’t know for certain of any other peopled colony in our universe, so we are ALL IN THIS TOGETHER.

As Trump concentrates on America First, I am sure he’s not in a particularly good mental place when dealing with all the things he cannot control or dismiss. That’s why the man is hammering out an increasing number of stupid tweets that are totally irrelevant to the crisis at hand.

In the Woody Allen movie Annie Hall, Woody’s character is in a theater line with Annie, played by Diane Keaton. They are both drawn into an overly loud conversation by a pontificating professor. This man claims to know everything about Canadian writer, philosopher and media guru Marshall McLuhan. Woody’s character, Alvy, gets quite irritated, and in one of the best fourth wall breaks in motion picture history, Alvy pulls another man into frame. The man is Marshall McLuhan himself who says, “I hear-I heard what you were saying. You-you know nothing of my work. You mean my whole fallacy is wrong.  How you ever got to teach a course in anything is totally amazing.”

Most people loved the putdown of the arrogant elitist but notice the deeper play on words. McLuhan says, You mean my whole fallacy is wrong.” Over the years, I have frequently thought of that sentence. Most people base their words and actions on premises, while fallacies are someone’s mistaken belief, especially when based on an unsound argument. Once McLuhan used the word, fallacy, he admitted his proposal was based on bad information. If a president creates a fallacy and bases his administration and every decision on that unsound judgement, how could things possibly go well?

Earlier in the same scene from Annie Hall, the target of the ire was discussing movies when he slammed the great film maker Federico Fellini with this line, “You know, you get the feeling that he’s not absolutely sure what it is he wants to say.” No one knowledgeable about cinema would ever say that Italian director Fellini didn’t know what he was trying to say, rather they would tell you he was demanding the viewer fill in the blanks. There are no blanks with Donald Trump. He has stuffed the heads of his moronic followers with every baseless bit he wants them to believe. Whether what he says is true or a lie simply doesn’t matter. His entire fallacy is wrong.

The President of United States doesn’t understand that people of our world are all one, large collective, and things that happen in Wuhan or West Virginia affect us all. Donald Trump’s open campaign against wearing a virus protection mask has produced yet another divide. Here’s proof, straight from a kid on a beach, “I mean, if he’s not wearing a mask, I’m not going to wear a mask. If he’s not worried, I’m not worried.” And there you have it, folks. The fallacy is that if everyone else is wearing a mask, you don’t need to. It’s much like the drunken logic of, “Well, if everyone else on the road is sober, I’ll be just fine driving smashed.”

Do you remember saying the Pledge of Allegiance every morning in school? The words are simple, “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Trump talks a lot about the flag and the importance of American patriotism, but he’s missing the point of the pledge. We are not pledging to the president, we are stating our loyalty to the flag and the country it represents and asserting our belief that this country is indivisible. If Trump sincerely believes that America should be first, then he needs to protect all citizens from any enemy, visible or invisible. Never forget “liberty and justice for all.” America starts with “We the people,” not just Republicans or Democrats but all the people. Trump has done nothing to make us more indivisible. To the contrary, he has made us more divided. It’s a big world, and he is a small man. God help us if he gets reelected.

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SOLDIERS TO FIREMEN TO NURSES

American Memorializes Real Heroes

There are those who think that one’s political opinions can get in the way of true patriotism. This is not true. Any citizen of this great nation has the right to write, publish or comment on whatever they want. Check the First Amendment to our Constitution. The right of freedom of the press gives us freedom of religion and gatherings. The president does not have the right to close churches, or demand they open. Legally speaking, it’s not his call.

Today, we are looking back to the way we view our own countrymen and women. When I was a kid, soldiers marched in parades. Firetrucks were always part of the festivities, and around the area where I grew up, Brentwood, Pennsylvania, the firetrucks were colorful. Brentwood had red trucks, while the neighboring borough, Whitehall, had, yes you guessed it, white trucks. The town of Green Tree, had green trucks. And you wonder why I am the way I am.

My father fought in World War II and had communications responsibilities in Europe. The troops were in charge of raising telephone poles and getting the phone system back up and running in that war-torn land. I was taught to be a patriot and respect America and the flag for which it stands. As I said in my recent book, Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs, I sincerely love my country and wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. I respect the military and don’t need a draft dodger or goodie-two-shoes flag waver to tell me who I am.

Sometime after World War II, we reluctantly sent more of our finest men to Korea to fight another conflict. That war didn’t result in a full victory, thus we now have a North and a South Korea. Later, we got sucked into another conflict between communists and dictators in Vietnam. We picked the side we believed would help us defeat communism. We were wrong and destroyed a country along with the good name of America. Vietnam veterans have not been treated very well in this country. I am sorry for that.

If you are a younger reader, I would suggest you watch these movies: Apocalypse Now, Born on the 4th of July, Platoon, Deer Hunter, Full Metal Jacket or spend some time with Ken Burns’ 2017 documentary The Vietnam War. There were more than 365,000 Vietnamese civilians killed in that war, while there are 58,276 names of US troops on the Vietnam Memorial in Washington, D.C. The war ended when the United States government evacuated embassy personnel and the communists took over Vietnam. That was not our proudest moment. Unfortunately, distrust of the government by our baby boomer generation, plus the general disdain for the war, splashed hard against our vets who came home, many injured, tired and broken. Drug addiction and despair gripped many of my buddies for years. They should be honored. They were asked to do a job, and they did it.

When terrorists from Saudi Arabia and Afghanistan entered our country and flew jets into the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and a field in Pennsylvania, these sites became crime scenes and war zones. The press even called the disaster in New York City “Ground Zero,” as if a bomb had been dropped at the site. That is the original meaning of the phrase. Brave police, firemen and first responders rushed to the burnt and fallen buildings, attempting to rescue people from the rubble. Since many perished, the teams turned to searching for human remains. As time has shown us, many of those heroes got terrible diseases and ailments from working on what they called “the pile” at Ground Zero. After years of fighting for benefits, Congress finally gave them some support and aid. It’s embarrassing that those responders had to fight to get credit and the help they needed. We should be honoring those people every day.

Now, we face another external force that has brought death and depression to many in this country, the global pandemic. As I’m writing this, there are close to 98,000 deaths from this evil virus, close to twice the number of casualties in the Vietnam war. Deaths from COVID-19 virus are now thirty-two times the number of US citizens who died on 9-11. Today we also salute those courageous people who are working endless hours in hospitals, clinics and nursing homes. Thank you for your service.

According to Vox.com, “Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, more than 90,000 healthcare workers have been infected with the virus.” It will probably be a long time before we get verified figures about healthcare worker deaths on the frontline, but it’s interesting that the same Vox article takes the position that we shouldn’t see healthcare workers in the same light as soldiers. You can read it here. I get their point. Soldiers go into war knowing they might die while healthcare workers never agreed to giving their life when doing their jobs. Nurses and doctors should be protected and our government has let them down.

While our present administration effected large increases in military spending, they cut back on funding for healthcare insurance protections, hospital expansions and they allowed the national stockpile of PPE, ventilators and testing equipment to dwindle to dangerous levels. These errors in action and faulty logistical planning can be documented, but this is not the day to hold the government accountable.

This is a day to honor those who did their jobs, saved lives and moved us toward the solution of a horrible global pandemic. When we see our leaders sink to the level of useless bickering, it ruins the American spirit and creates division rather than a united front to win this medical and economic war. Today I can’t help thinking about my father and the five years of his life he gave up helping to save the world from Nazis.

Our damn politicians don’t fool all of us. We see them go into secret meetings and come out with those lugubrious faces, repeating paltry partisan talking points. They are not heroes; they are cardboard cutouts that will fall with the purity of rain. Real heroes don’t ask for praise or keep repeating how exceptional they are. They wake up, get out of bed and do their job. We must honor them with our words and our actions. We shall move forward, with or without those lame leaders who fail to take care of us. If you only listen to those who you agree with, you will never become stronger. The weak may follow, but the truly brave always lead.


COVID 96,000 – AMERICA 0

Trump’s Losing Game Plan

When anger slowly morphs into determination, things get done. Donald Trump has neglected to use his authority as President to manage the global pandemic, clearly demonstrating he is concerned only with protecting himself, not the citizens of America.

A major deflection being perpetrated on America is Trump’s obsession with stopping states from executing plans to vote by mail in the November presidential election. REALLY? This hogwash that there is a massive amount of voter fraud is just another senseless claim from Trump, who believes there are people out to get him. Someone told him that Republicans tend to lose where mail in voting is deployed. That is not true; just look at Florida. The states that do ALL VOTING BY MAIL: Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon and Washington have no problems or fraud. Those aren’t test cases, they are real states, Mr. President.

On Friday, May 22, 2020, a new study was released showing the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine, that Trump endlessly pitched to America and now says he is using, puts anyone taking it at risk of DEATH. This study researched 96,000 coronavirus patients in hospital around world and was published by the prestigious medical journal Lancet. So, the cat is out of the bag. TRUMP IS DEADLY WRONG ABOUT THE DRUG. The strange coincidence here, this report of a study of 96,000 people, came the same time COVID deaths in America went over 96,000.

America has weak federal leadership that has led us to becoming the deplorable, symbolic ground zero in this worldwide plague. Trump will continue to use the excuse of the cupboards being bare when he took office, but his administration did nothing to prepare for the possibility of a global pandemic. He disbanded one White House task force, only to hurriedly roll out another. The Donald has removed regulations, cut science and reduced medical and healthcare funding wherever he could. How do we know this? He bragged about it.

He walks around in public bucking his administration’s own recommendations and flaunting his small mindedness by not wearing a mask. He believes he is above it all and cannot be taken down by the viral menace. Clearly, this is a metaphor for his management and governing philosophy. If he cannot see it, it doesn’t exist. I guess he is from the dark ages.

Trump has declared that if the virus comes back — did it truly go away? — he will not close the country. He would rather kill more people than ever admit he was wrong. Should this inept man get the virus because he’s not wearing a mask, all his gofers and goofballs will say that he’s okay while telling tall tales of a brave man beating an illness no more harmful than the flu. I don’t believe Mike Pence and the Chief of Staff; Kevin McCarthy would be transparent and honest about what was happening. They would just take power and make excuses for Trump.

This could be another of those strange moments where a motion picture predicted real life. In the 1993 movie Dave, the titular character played by Kevin Kline ran a temporary employment agency and had a side gig impersonating the President. The Secret Service requested that Kline’s character, a dead ringer for the president, make an appearance for the president at a Washington hotel. Dave is told it’s a matter of national security, but it’s really to cover up an extramarital affair the real president is having with a White House staffer. Now here’s where it gets good. The president in the movie suffers a severe stroke during the rendezvous leaving him in a coma. The White House Chief of Staff, played by Frank Langella, convinces Dave to continue impersonating the president. When Dave challenges them by asking why the Vice President couldn’t just step in, they say the VP is mentally unbalanced.

I won’t spoil the movie’s outcome for you, but I recommend you watch this work of predictive art. What would happen if Trump got sick? When UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson came down with COVID-19, not only was the country on the precipice of a constitutional crisis, but it challenged their lack of succession protocol and order.

President Donald Trump wants to paint a picture of winning, while being challenged by medical professionals with the question, “At what cost?” His answer back to those who question his advice in a crisis is, “What do you have to lose?”

This brings us to the story of Elizabeth Fleischman, who was a pioneering radiographer and one of the inventors of the X-ray. Fleischman, because of her close work and exposure with the new technology, died in 1905. X-rays killed her. But wait, there’s more.

On September 6, 1901, the Pan-American Exhibition was taking place in Buffalo, New York. One of the exhibits on display there was an X-ray machine. President William McKinley was attending, and shot by a young anarchist who fired two bullets. One superficially punctured his sternum and the other dangerously entered his abdomen. The operating doctors weren’t sure they found and removed all the slugs, so someone suggested employing the X-ray machine to determine if there were more bullets in his body. Experts warned the doctors that internally blasting metal fragments with X-rays could kill the president. The doctors heeded the advice.

The story doesn’t have a happy ending. After being on the mend for a while, McKinley succumbed to his wounds on September 14, 1901. Someone could have said to the doctors, “Hey, what do you have to lose?” and convinced them to plough ahead with use of the X-ray. Even if they had located another bullet and extracted it, there is no guarantee McKinley would have survived.

The anarchist immigrant who killed McKinley, Leon Czolgosz, was convicted and executed in an electric chair on October 29, 1901, another use of electricity.

We know now so much more than they knew then. When Donald Trump ignores science and medical facts, he endangers not only himself but all Americans. Our president is less about defeating the virus and more about opening the economy. We are not winning to the degree Trump wants us to believe. We still have a lot to lose. Perhaps the next President will make us great again.

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


DO WE REALLY CARE?

Kill a Bunch of Weak People, Get Back to Normal

I hate the coronavirus and all that it has done to our country and world. I am ashamed of Donald John Trump, our supposed leader. This crisis has revealed his lack of understanding about basic scientific principles. What he and his minions say to the press and their constituents is so partisan and stupid it makes me sick, not like pandemic sick, rather mentally agitated and anxious. So now I will lay down some thoughts to end another week of this global crisis, so that one day when I look back I will be able to say, okay, you did see it, and you reacted. I also want my kids and grand kids to know exactly what I thought about this damn mess.

Washington is wasting time

We should all just stop watching the news and go about our business, but what business might that be? As I walked out of Walmart today, carrying a package of paper towels and some disinfectant, the term “Faustian bargain” came to mind. This is what we have. This is where we’re at.

A Faustian bargain is a mythical pact whereby a person trades something of supreme moral or spiritual importance, such as personal values or their own soul, for worldly or material benefit, such as knowledge, power or riches. It’s like the pact made in the Broadway show and motion picture Damn Yankees, in which a man sold himself to the devil so his team, the Washington Senators, could beat the New York Yankees and win the pennant. That man gave up the love of his life to see his team at the top. Let me explain why this is exactly where we are right now in the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Satan-like creature who is tempting us with his Faustian bargain is the President of the United States. Donald Trump has been told over and over that with a strong economy he cannot be defeated in the election, and like the man selling his soul in exchange for a team win, Trump will do anything to achieve reelection. I am not exaggerating when I use the word anything.

As Donald Trump attempts to remake America according to his image and thought processes, he fails to understand that family, morality and kindness are more fundamental than people wearing red MAGA hats. He attempts to stir up the independent nature of some people with his LIBERATE tweets, but short of a future civil war what is the value of that contradiction? He told us the coronavirus was bad and we would have to stay safe, but then complained about his own advice. He is in an argument with himself and he truly doesn’t know what to do.

Trump’s Faustian bargain is pushed by his sycophants and miscreants who manipulate him and control his inner bully. These scoundrels don’t give a shit about whether people die or not, they care only about high ratings for their demigod. Trump pushed hard for states to open way before they should have, but that is not the real bargain. His deal with the devil is trading peoples’ lives for an economic return that will satisfy his drive to stay in power.

One reason he doesn’t wear a mask is purely a case of vanity. He slathers orange makeup on his face every morning because he thinks it makes him look better. He wastes tons of time making sure his comb-over hair looks simply perfect. He dresses in the same kinds of outfits every day because he’s insecure about his weight, and he surely believes that long ties, big blue suits and baggy pants make him look thinner. They don’t. He feels that wearing a mask would make him look weak, inferior and vulnerable. He’s the classic control-freak with low self-esteem. Deep down inside he knows he’s a fake, thus his many attacks based on the word “fake.”

There are those who will say that I am being cruel using the words “Kill a Bunch of Weak People, Get Back to Normal,” but that is the precise nature of the bargain Trump has taken. He’s pushing hard and lying more and more to get what he wants. He’s in a quandary. If people believe he’s negligent, his numbers will stay low and he will be a one-term president. If he doesn’t push the economy out of this padlocked state, the conservatives and rich donors will let the negatives fly to his detriment, and he will not tolerate that well. He has no built-in self-protection from criticism and does not think clearly when he’s angry. How did he ever become president?

Foul Shot at Puerto Ricans

When a demonic and destructive hurricane whipped through Puerto Rico, Trump was asked for help from the Mayor of San Juan. 2,975 people lost their lives when Maria leveled much of their island. Trump attacked the Mayor verbally, and when he arrived to see the damage, he unleashed his vindictive vitriol and blamed the government of Puerto Rico for the damage. These are the acts of a mean, uncaring human. And to prove this more, Trump commented while touring a plant making ventilators in Michigan yesterday, “We’re not going to close the country if there’s a second wave!” He’s just going to let you die.

The question in the title of this piece is real. Do we really care? When I see the headline: More than 1,200 pastors say they’ll defy California’s state order and resume in-person services, it’s clear these people do not have the safety and health of their flocks on their minds. Recently, a family held a funeral service in Albany, Georgia with a wonderful turnout of more than 200 unmasked, closely huddled people. Within weeks, the coronavirus spread throughout that county of 90,000 people, which now has 135 virus victims.

I get it. We are religious. We are brave. We believe God will protect us, but it’s immoral for a religious leader to promote the gathering of souls only to have them get infected and die. Read the Holy Bible. It’s not a political decision, it’s a public health decision. Protect your flock and be a good shepherd. The First Amendment was written by men who cared about the living and honored the dead by protecting their spirits. Stop producing UNNECESSARY DEATH. Perhaps that should be written on the arrest order for Donald Trump.


HISTORICAL BLANK STARE

The Legacy of the Trump Debacle

President James Polk described one of his generals, Zachary Taylor, in a diary entry. Polk wrote, “I am now satisfied that he is a narrow-minded, bigoted partisan, without resources and wholly unqualified for the command he holds!” I think of Donald Trump and wish I had written that sentence. What do YOU have to lose, democracy, freedom or just your life?

I’m a real history freak and love to return to the past and read the details of how presidents handled the crises and calamities of their eras. Sometimes it gives me comfort that everything is going to be alright, but other times I can only guess what the great leaders of our history would say about Donald Trump. I am sure Andrew Jackson would laugh at him, even though Trump claims to be a big Jackson fan. The circus we are living through with Donald Trump would have been seen by Abraham Lincoln as nothing short of an alien invasion. No, Donald, none of them would have respected you.

Some hope arises when we realize that many presidents were accused of grabbing power, disregarding the Constitution and trampling the balance of power between the three branches of government, but we are still here. America is stronger than any one man, but it’s not unreasonable to distrust a human who has been given that much power. It can go to their heads and they don’t always do what is right.

There is no question in my mind that when “real” historians write the book on Trump, there will be little positive evaluation of his work. He will be mocked and taunted by the truth of the facts that will be revealed after he leaves office. What we do know about Trump for sure is that he never graduated from candidate to president. Time will reveal that this president kept lots of people around who will be indicted as thieves and liars. Perhaps they will say it’s just politics, but when the body count is put in writing, Trump will look like a lying James Polk or a naïve Herbert Hoover, not Lincoln, Kennedy or Obama.

Here’s something from the History.com website, “Many historians rate America’s 15th chief executive, James Buchanan, as the most inept occupant of the White House due mainly to the fact that he took no action to unite a country sharply divided over the issue of slavery and did nothing to stop Southern states from seceding in the lead-up to the Civil War.” It’s important to point out here that 620,000 soldiers were killed in the war between the states, which to this day remains the greatest number of deaths in all US wars. In the Dread Scott decision, which came along shortly after Buchanan’s inauguration, the US Supreme Court ruled that African Americans were not, and never could become, US citizens, and the federal government couldn’t outlaw slavery in its territories. Historians believe that Buchanan manipulated this decision, thinking questions of slavery would be resolved forever.

When reading old headlines such as this, “Trump Sows Division and Confusion as Anxious Country Edges Toward Opening,” future historical archeologists will dig through layers of past posts, articles and speeches to find the truth. The complaints by pundits and political rivals that Trump avoided taking the full leadership role a president should during a global pandemic, will be blasted onto the pages of books and articles. As happened with Buchanan, some will say that state’s rights seemed more important than the federal government taking responsibility during a crisis.

In the history of the United States, presidents have lied to start land-grabbing wars — that is how we got Texas, New Mexico and California. They have lied about dirty deeds, such as secretly facilitating the sale of arms to the Khomeini government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, which was the subject of an arms embargo. President Ronald Reagan hoped to use the proceeds of the arms sale to fund the Contras in Nicaragua, where he had picked a winner. Reagan claimed not to know anything about it, and those who helped him cover up the lie were pardoned by President George H.W. Bush. The man who wrote those pardons? Current Attorney General William Barr.

The death count of COVID-19 will show many people we need a President who understands science and doesn’t disregard expert warnings of danger. The blank stare we get from many of those truth-challenged jackasses in the White House disprove the notion that Trump will hire “the best people.” THAT IS ONE BIG LIE.

Donald John Trump is a deceiver and complainer. He doesn’t get much done because few want to work with him. His word means nothing and his vacillation on so many issues has prevented positive results from all his diplomatic efforts. We get zippo from the man. North Korea has the bomb, Putin has done nothing good for America and Trump’s good friend Chinese President Xi Jinping is now the reason Trump failed to act quickly enough on the pandemic. This Trump guy is unbelievable, NO, REALLY, UNBELIEVABLE!

This just in: Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says the Palestinians will no longer abide by previous agreements made with Israel. Yes, they just tore up all the agreements for 25 years, I guess one of those “best persons” in the name of Jared Kushner doesn’t know what he’s doing. Totally unqualified for the job his father-in-law assigned him. Nepotism and cronyism are the dual cancers on this presidency.

The bad programs and poorly conceived policies of the Trump Administration have not protected us economically or medically. He spent so much time fighting Obamacare that he failed to understand how it would have helped during a health crisis. He accuses his political rivals of endless picadilloes which pale in comparison to the disastrous, divisionary decisions he’s made as President.

We have witnessed Trump ignoring warning signs, hyping bad drugs, promising imaginary stockpiles and promoting goofy ideas like mask cleaning machines. The idea that a quick blast of UV light will kill any viruses lurking in a room is foolhardy. Trump doesn’t know enough to know what he doesn’t know, but that will never stop him from declaring himself an expert.

The Donald ignores experts on the issues and spouts claims that sound as crazy as the sales pitch of an 1800s elixir salesman before taking the money and running. It happened to my grandfather, who was sold a bottle of medicine that was supposed to rejuvenate his teeth and leave them stain-free. After the salesman left town, my grandfather proceeded to burn the enamel off all his teeth with the elixir he bought. That old phrase “let the buyer beware” didn’t help his attitude when all his teeth had to be pulled.

Trump is like that salesman, ready to leave town right after he bags all the bucks. His handling of this global pandemic will be part of his legacy, forever. Maybe people will forget he was impeached, but I’m sure no competent historian will ignore the large number of people who died on his watch. Donald Trump is worse than James Buchanan, and far more dangerous to our country than Richard Nixon. Remember, Nixon resigned before going through an impeachment trial. Even after losing the election, Trump will have to be removed from the White House biting, frothing, screaming and resisting departure. Trump is an immoral criminal and an embarrassing America catastrophe. The clock is ticking, fat boy.

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


THE CALM BEFORE THE STORM

Our Beloved President’s Gamble with Human Lives

Back in April, Lieutenant Governor of Texas Dan Patrick said, “There are more important things than living and that’s saving this country.” Recognize that this statement came from a leader whose government has executed 563 persons since 1976, more than any other state. My revulsion and anger at Mr. Patrick’s statement revolve around human life. Many Christian do-gooders value life so sacredly that they ban abortions, but never sacred enough to fund agencies that help single mothers, economically challenged families and homeless people. I think Patrick’s comments exactly echo Donald Trump’s thoughts.

A virus knows no boundaries and cannot be stopped with steel walls or banned flights. We prevented travel from some countries several months ago, but that didn’t halt the invasion of COVID-19. It wasn’t the number of people who did or did not come to America, it was our exasperating lack of preparation that caused the explosion of coronavirus clusters in our cities and states.

The sales pitch that attempts to blame increased numbers of infections on greater virus testing is an irresponsible sleight of hand. Why is there no mention about the power of this disease? During the first blast of HIV/AIDS in the US, we analyzed only deaths. Most scientists had no idea about the origin of the malaise and how many years it spread. As more data surfaced, we assumed the ailment affected only gay men. Research based on that strange supposition kept doctors from understanding what was really happening. As we now know, the disease is not confined to gay men. It can be contracted by any person during a sexual encounter.

Until it’s blue in the face, the Trump administration will try to blame China for COVID-19 but that will not solve the problem. It was almost a hundred years after AIDS leaped from animal to human that it got on human medical radar. We have learned how to control HIV, but we still don’t have a vaccine even though we started working on that project forty years ago. The scientific community has been researching cures and vaccines for SARS-Coronavirus-2 since 2002, which is good news because it provides a head start on COVID-19, but we still have to find a way to stop this latest novel coronavirus.

Intelligent leadership in various fields is helping us to better understand this virus. I give serious credit to Major League Baseball for their negotiations and deliberations on ways to bring professional baseball back into our lives. They understand the need to isolate and test all of their players and workers. They started out with a bad plan of playing all games in one place, which led to push back from players. Even though baseball players are usually on the road 50% of the season, they were not willing to uproot their lives and isolate themselves from their homes, wives and kids. That led to an idea of a shortened season in home ballparks with no audiences in the stands, but with TV and radio coverage to rally the fans.

On the HBO TV show Last Week Tonight, John Oliver mentioned research that claimed as many as 10,000 employees were involved in every nationwide MLB game, meaning 10,000 people per game would have to be tested and retested to keep everyone safe. What if we eventually learned that this virus infects the muscles or brains of those infected? Highly skilled and paid players are the foundation of professional sports. If an entire franchise were to be infected with COVID-19, would they have to quarantine for 14 days causing forfeits on the games they missed?

Major League Baseball’s revenue for the 2019 season was a record $10.7 billion, which was up from $10.3 in 2018. They have tons of money to spend on safety and testing, unlike medium to small businesses. One giant leap of faith here involves the quality and accuracy of the tests. I have personal experience with people who have been tested with sometimes positive, and other times negative, results. That’s frightening.

Donald Trump tells us that somehow this virus will just go away. His wishful thinking is the guiding force of reopening of our country and could lead to the biggest mistake any president in our history has ever made. Donnie Boy brags about how his early actions kept us from losing more than a million people, when just a few minutes later he says that none of the statistics are accurate. He quotes that which he agrees with, but stomps on any other data that paints a more sober picture.

A standard business philosophy states that reward requires risk. If one owns a university, or a company that sells steaks, it’s only money that evaporates when the enterprise goes bust. Then there are pandemics, where wrong moves kill people. Over the weekend, we learned that not many people came into the free, state-run COVID-19 testing centers. Could this be the by-product of Trump not wearing a mask, touting unproven drugs and downplaying the infectious nature of COVID-19? Perhaps it doesn’t matter to Donald Trump, as long as he doesn’t get it. Not sure what he gets?

I could be sarcastic stating my belief that people are acting stupidly, but millions of Americans voted for Trump. I’m not saying they are dumb, but those who believe too solidly in this President may, at this very moment, be huddling closely together in bars and hair salons without masks. Might they discover the depth of Donald Trump’s stupidity? I am still miffed at the Fox News personalities who claim the virus is no big deal, but who remain at home to broadcast for their own personal safety. WTF?

I hope this is NOT the calm before the storm but should that storm come, we know who to blame, those governors who ignored science and their Ringleader-in-Chief, Donald John Trump. Let’s dump the lot of them in November!

If you read this book, you can see why all this happened to us.

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


FAILURE OF INTELLIGENCE

Trump Trusts No One

Here is a great quote from a retired United States Appeals Court Circuit Judge, “I refuse to believe that ‘Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free…’ is now an empty entreaty. But if it is, shame on us.” Interestingly, those are the words of Maryanne Trump Barry, our President’s sister.

Donald & Maryanne

Most of what Donald Trump says now as President, and what he had to say to become President, are not based on deep-seated values or creeds. He is first and foremost a bully. His disdain for immigrants is most likely not a campaign ploy but rather an inner summoning of his father, Fred Trump. On Mother’s Day, Donnie Boy confessed that his mother, Mary, spoiled him. Oh, favorite son, now we better understand your need for praise.

Sister Maryanne has publicly said that “neither of my parents had English as a first language,” but she was quiet when Trump rolled out his anti-immigrant rhetoric to run for President. Perhaps Maryanne knows that Trump’s prefabricated prejudices are sick jokes aimed at lower educated and disgruntled voters. But wait, Trump’s Scottish mother didn’t speak English? Curious, that.

After being sworn in as president, Donald Trump’s first official trip was to Langley, Virginia and the CIA. He wanted to reassure the intelligence community of his full support. Trump, unable to unplug from the character he constantly played as candidate, veered off course during the appearance at the intelligence agency and attacked the “dishonest media” and vowed to loosen the torture rules put in place by President Obama. Really? Were we watching an episode of the TV show 24 or the 45th President of the United States?

Trump’s remarks were made while he stood in front of the marble wall of stars that represent each of the 117 CIA agents who have died in service to our country. What the President failed to understand was the sacred nature of that environment and just how deeply disrespectful his comments were. The olive branch he held out to the intelligence community that day dropped to the floor and blasted another hole through the spirits of those lifelong professionals. Trump disbelieves every intelligence report that doesn’t confirm his beliefs and suppositions. He places high regard solely on his own pitiful ignorance.

When writing my book Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs, an alert editor pointed out that some of my comments about the Warren Commission and the John F. Kennedy assassination were ill-informed. I listen to my editors, so I picked up some highly recommended books and studied the matter. What I learned surprised me. The intelligence community of the United States is exceptionally good at what it does. and the daily security briefings brought to the president can save lives, protect the homeland and shield our economy. Sadly, things often go wrong.

It’s less about the quality of the intel and more about how it’s distributed, analyzed and acted upon. Much knowledge about JFK and Lee Harvey Oswald, the alleged assassin, was never properly brought into one protective shield for that President. We learned after 9-11 that our intelligence knew that Osama Bin Laden’s Al Qaeda terrorists were coming to attack America, but the dots were never connected. The lack of organized leadership and a plan to use the data wisely was missing, as often happens.

A problem exists when those at the top of the State Department have a one-way relationship with the leader of the free world. People at high levels of government often do not want to admit serious, dangerous plots to their leader. This is especially true with Trump, who pushes aside specific and negative predictions. He prefers minions who say, “Don’t worry boss, everything is okay.”

So, we now come to the central problem with TRUMP. He disbelieves intelligence that comes from people he views as disloyal. He foolishly thinks he’s a political force that is always right, never wrong, and which may never be questioned. His little Goebbels-like minister of propaganda, Stephen Miller, once said on national TV, “No one has the right to question this President.” Curiously, this came from a guy whose relatives escaped the Nazi concentration camps. What do you suppose happened to his brain and soul?

When someone in the government presented the possibility that the coronavirus could come to the United States, did they make the grave and potential disaster clear to Trump? Did Trump ignore the facts and intelligence? What must his confidents do to get his attention? All too often, Trump slays the truth tellers and casts them aside as “disgruntled workers,” “never Trumpers,” “treasonous snakes” or “scum.” Why are so many people disgruntled? Why do such a large percentage of Americans hate their president?

We are now at a dangerous fork in the road with Trump firing people who hold the power of oversight. Those he cannot fire are exiled to parts of the government uninvolved with the Executive Branch. This president is looking like a criminal, a crook, a con or, for our Japanese readers, a Yakuza.

What happened in the US with the COVID-19 global pandemic was one colossal cluster fuck of confusion, missteps and malfeasance. Trump simply doesn’t use intelligence; never has, never will. Even a feeble brain would have known that Atlantic City couldn’t support a Vegas-style casino, but Donnie Boy didn’t listen to those who disagreed with him. We all need to be concerned about his personal psychological problems because he’s the damn president of the country.

Advisors told Trump COVID-19 was coming and explained what would happen. He ignored them. Donald Trump’s trade advisor, Peter Navarro wrote a memo that said, “The lack of immune protection or an existing cure or vaccine would leave Americans defenseless in the case of a full-blown coronavirus outbreak on U.S. soil. This lack of protection elevates the risk of the coronavirus evolving into a full-blown pandemic, imperiling the lives of millions of Americans.” I am not making this up. Navarro’s memo was written on January 29, 2020. Our “real genius” president claims he never saw it. Perhaps it arrived on a golf day.

Ultimate Cover-up

The coronavirus impact on minorities, the elderly and those without healthcare insurance is dreadful. It’s amazing to me that state and federal governments are looking the other way when it comes to nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Why wouldn’t America have a strong law about these services and how they operate? States don’t go far enough to protect older Americans, and they are dying by the thousands because of this virus.

Last week, the New York Times reported, “At least 28,100 residents and workers have died from the coronavirus at nursing homes and other long-term care facilities for older adults in the United States.” Some experts say that one-third of all the COVID-19 deaths are residents and workers in assisted living settings. So, Donald Trump’s lack of concern and action has hurt the elderly.

This post began with a quote from a retired judge who knows Donald Trump intimately. She once said, “Thugs who brutalize elderly people should be punished severely.” If the White House has become a Thugz Mansion (props to Tupac for his inspiration and spelling) then the Donald must be the head goon. Yes, Maryanne, he should be punished severely.

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