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.


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.

Stop Watching TV and Read a Book

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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.


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.


ASK CHINA THAT QUESTION!

Trump Scolds Reporters in the Rose Garden

My father was born in 1913 and if alive today he would be 107 years old. Growing up on a farm, my father dealt with a lot of hard work after his father died when Dad was 15 years of age. He was the youngest of 13 children and acquired most of his beliefs, prejudices and viewpoints during a depression and two wars. I didn’t blame him for his Archie Bunker-type comments, even though I knew why they were wrong.

My father used the term “polack” to describe Polish people, and although he never used the “N” word, he was most comfortable with calling African Americans “colored.” All the schools I attended were not integrated. My schooling took place before controversial busing laws, so I grew up in a white bubble. This was well before there was even the notion of “political correctness,” and many of the things we said then would not be received well today. If my father was around now, he would probably agree with the main guy in the White House.

Maybe because I was schooled as a journalist, my viewpoint on Donald J. Trump has been damaged by his constant disdain of media and disparagement of our free press. Along with my Presbyterian upbringing and the moral core of my being, I take umbrage with any verbal attack of a group of people, especially the downtrodden and persecuted minorities. I guess you can call me a bleeding heart, tree hugging liberal, although I would prefer to be known as a person with an altruistic grounding and who cares about people.

One of the burning questions that many have raised about Trump is whether he has some embedded racist viewpoints. We do know that his father Fred was probably a Nazi sympathizer. Records show that his father was arrested during a Nazi parade in New York in 1927, but let’s not judge a son’s values based on his father’s closed-mindedness.

The 45th President is a cloudy picture that can turn ugly in an instant. He uses the terms, “good people” to describe individuals who carry Nazi symbols of hate. He needs an enemy or combatant on every issue, which forces him to create a demon when none exists. He was quick to desire a ban of all Muslims from entering the US before he knew the details of one shooting.

When Trump runs out of Democrats, people of color, people from other countries or anyone who disagrees with him to bully, he aims his verbal attacks at the press. That is probably one of his easiest targets. When engaging with the press, his uncharted and disjointed verbosity gives us a great portal into his soul. His words are telling.

During a press conference in the Rose Garden on Monday May 11, 2020, President Donald Trump abruptly ended the briefing after he was challenged by one CNN reporter for withdrawing her turn to ask a question, but the damage was already done on mic with a previous reporter. CBS News Asian American reporter Weijia Jiang asked Trump why he emphasized that the US was doing better than any other country with respect to coronavirus testing. Ms. Jiang pressed Trump, “Why does that matter? Why is this a global competition to you if every day Americans are still losing their lives and we are still seeing more cases every day?” As all the viewers could plainly see, Trump was miffed by the question and loudly retorted, “Well, they are losing their lives everywhere in the world. Maybe that is a question you should ask China. Don’t ask me! Ask China that question!”

Weijia has gotten under Trump’s skin in earlier press conferences, so even with her mask on Trump knew the Asian American reporter from CBS. He has rebuked and disparaged her in the past. The president then called on CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, who was walking to the microphone as Jiang leaned over with half her mask off to ask, “Sir, why are you saying that to me, specifically?” The whole world witnessed Donald Trump facing an Asian woman who was confronting the President of the United States.

Donald Trump’s comeback was lame, “I am not saying it specifically to anybody. I am saying it to anybody who would ask a nasty question like that.” The only thing that we could hear clearly after that was Jiang objection, “That is not a nasty question.”

Trump has no idea that what he did was purely racist, but then he doesn’t use logic, science or facts to determine any of his positions. Trump’s outburst was racist because she’s Asian, and he was insinuating that she should ask China because she’s Chinese. His move hearkened back to the time he asked April Ryan, an African American reporter, to talk to the Black Caucus for him. I guess he did so because of the color of April’s skin. He would not have asked a white reporter to be a middle-man or negotiator with African American groups. He assumed she was in cahoots with the Black Caucus.

Donald Trump had a strange comment when asked about the senseless killing of a black man in Georgia, Ahmaud Arbery. Few in the media picked up on this issue because of the intensity Trump created with his Chinese blunder during this week’s truncated press conference.

In response to a black reporter asking how he felt about the delayed justice in Georgia, Trump said, “I think it’s horrible and it’s certainly being looked at by many people – I’m speaking to many people about it.”  Then, the President pointed out that he talked with South Carolina Senator Tim Scott, the Senate’s only black Republican, and relayed that Senator Scott said that he too was disturbed by the fatal shooting. Tim Scott is a good guy but he’s not from Georgia. Donald Trump seemed to want people to know that he “has a black friend.” He was attempting to exploit that friendship to demonstrate he understands African American challenges in this country and, in a sense, was researching how he should react. Was he getting permission?

Our current House of Representatives has 56 African Americans while the Senate has only ten. Trump leans on Tim Scott so much in his commentary because of Scott’s special status of being African American and Republican. It’s doubtful that Trump called any Democratic African American members of Congress for their viewpoints on this tragedy.

When the President of the United States yells at a reporter, who was born in China but grew up in West Virginia, “ASK CHINA THAT QUESTION!” he is saying he doesn’t have an answer. He doesn’t know why everything is a competition. He told us we would be tired of winning. He was right; we are fatigued with his games. He has proven many times that he doesn’t like direct questions from women and especially women of color. So, he’s not only racist, but a male chauvinist pig. Okay, paste another star on his forehead. What a guy.

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.


BRAVE BRAZILIANS & BAD BATS

Trump Fails the COVID Test

Has anyone ever told you, “It’s all in your head?” That dismissive statement is so disheartening. There are many hypochondriacs in the world. These people are abnormally anxious about their health and they find ailments, diseases and disorders in every corner. However, a little paranoia and fear is good in us humans when it keeps us from doing the wrong things.

We have heard much about the origin of the novel coronavirus. So much that we have no certainty where it came from other than some animal, like a bat. Folklore has demonized the bat by making it the villain in fright movies. That might have started with the vampire bat, found primary in Central America and South America. Their food source is blood, a dietary trait called hematophagy. Experts believe they evolved from frugivorous bats, with sharp teeth specialized for piercing fruit. Evolution led to eating parasites on mammals and eventually to piercing the skin of their prey to get to the blood. The human vampire myth is based on this animal. Brazil is one of the countries where vampire bats sleep at day and bite at night.

According to the renowned British medical journal the Lancet, “the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic reached Latin America later than other continents. The first case recorded in Brazil was on Feb 25, 2020. But now, Brazil has the most cases and deaths in Latin America.” I am not at all suggesting that Brazil had something to do with the origin of the global pandemic, but they are an interesting study in stupidity.

Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, one of the world’s leading coronavirus deniers, was out this weekend jet skiing and sending a message to his fellow Brazilians that there is nothing to fear. According to Time magazine, “The far-right firebrand, who was elected in 2018 trading on conspiracy theories and half-truths, has dismissed COVID-19 as a ‘little flu’ and remarked that ’we all die someday.’” He has flouted his own health ministry’s guidance by going on walkabouts to greet supporters and has urged Brazilians to leave isolation and return to work, defying the advice of the World Health Organization.” It would be ironic if Bolsonaro got the “little flu,” but hey, he’s brave.

The medical, health and local governors in Brazil are urging President Bolsonaro to send a more cautious message to the citizens, but it’s too late. Brazil will become a global hotspot because its leader’s lack of understanding. As of May 11, 2020, Brazil had 163,510 cases with 11,207 deaths. As their testing increases, the case count will certainly go up but at what cost? Brazil has a population of 209 million. Some of the early deniers like, Donald Trump and Boris Johnson, have finally come to respect the challenge, but there are other world leaders who are militant.

The autocrat in Belarus, President Aleksandr G. Lukashenko, has yet to impose any restrictions to slow the virus. We have also heard much about Sweden’s approach to the pandemic, do nothing, let the herd take the hit and move on. Might I remind you that the expression “herd immunity” means people will die?

With a population of only 10 million, Sweden currently has 26,322 confirmed cases with 3,225 deaths. They consider this a success. While we are uncertain the stats are accurate, Belarus reported to the World Health Organization that they have 23,906 cases with 135 deaths. I guess the Belarussians can’t be infected with something they don’t know about. It’s important to point out that President Putin in Russian started out being dismissive, until it became necessary to be honest. Russia has 221,000 cases of COVID-19 with 2,009 deaths. Putin is smart and expresses caution, while probably scheming how he can grab more power in this crisis.

Getting back to America, President Donald Trump is now facing the reality that people in his inter sanctum have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus. This is not going to go well. A few minutes after a Sunday afternoon news leak that VP Mike Pence would be self-quarantined, a strongly worded retraction was issued saying that Pence would be going to the White House on Monday, as usual. I am sure a call from Trump motivated that reversal.

Just like the constant whiplash we have learned to expect from the Trump administration, we are seeing stories about the President being uptight about COVID being so close to him. Yes, I am suggesting that a certain strange personification of the COVID is taking place in Trump’s brain. He’s already working from home.

It’s like the hypocrites at Fox News who keep encouraging people to do what the president says about opening the country, yet being fearful and cowering in their homes while they broadcast their nightly diatribes. Trump is also apprehensive. We know he’s a germaphobe, but his love of money, need for approval and obsessive desire to get re-elected produce muddled messages. It’s clearly a “do as I say” rather than “do as I do” warning that he sends.

The lackadaisical attitude of our top guy produces actions by those who still respect his opinion. With each pronouncement of openings and the relaxation of social distancing, we see fewer people wearing masks in public. When Trump said, “…wearing a mask would send the wrong message” and make him look ridiculous, his MAGA sycophants heard, “If you wear a mask YOU will look ridiculous!” Someone please tell me, what is the difference between “Anti-Vaxxers” and Trump? Both say stupid things that cause harm, pain and sometimes death.

Most Americans don’t care about Sweden or Brazil or Belarus, but they do care about their children. Sadly, we are learning that our leaders, both political and medical, were wrong about this virus not being dangerous to children. That was a tragic mistake.

I gasped when this headline appeared, “3 New York Children Die From Syndrome Possibly Linked to COVID-19.” Just when we think we understand what is happening, we learn something new. We now know that COVID-19 (clinically named SARS – CoV-2 virus) will attack organs other than the lungs. We have a monster on our shores, and if we let up now we will be living in fear for a long time.

Donald John Trump has failed the global pandemic test. We were NOT ready, and his mind WAS NOT and IS NOT in the right place to cope. Our experts stepped up and tried to guide him to proper actions, but he was slow and conflicted at every turn. The President will continue to distract by casting an ever-widening net of blame. He will try to focus on some positives, but his feeble attempts will no longer work. The virus is in the White House.

Trump’s nightmares of bats, labs, germs and fear of being poisoned will continue, but deep down inside he knows the only way to beat this curse is to find a cure. His political reputation and career are currently in the hands of others and he can’t stand that. Which brings us to my best advice, “Never send a narcissist to a pandemic.”  

Two Books For Your Stay-at-Home

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UNCOMFORTABLY NUMB

The Putrid Fumes of a Presidential Pandemic

In William Shakespeare’s dramatic offering HAMLET, the ultra-famous playwright penned a line that is often quoted, “Something is rotten in the state of Denmark.” It was uttered by palace guard Marcellus, after seeing the ghost of the dead king walking over the palace walls. He is speaking to his philosophical comrade, Horatio, saying that the situation of Denmark is like a fish that rots from head to tail. Marcellus is commenting that everything is not good at top of the political hierarchy.

In the 1979 Pink Floyd classic Comfortably Numb, the opening lyrics can be dropped directly into your brain without interpretation, “Hello? Hello? Hello? Is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me, Is there anyone at home? Come on now, I hear you’re feeling down. Well I can ease your pain, Get you on your feet again, Relax, I’ll need some information first; Just the basic facts…” Eventually, this sonic masterpiece ends with the lines, “The dream is gone. I have become comfortably numb.”

Something stinks in DC and we are anything but comfortable. Even if we are a bit numb, we are not dumb. We see the numbers on our TV screens every day, there, up on the right, how many infected, how many died. By the end of Mother’s Day 2020, the United States reached the horrible milestones of 80,000 deaths with more than 1.3 million cases of infection. This is real.

A growing number of Americans are figuring out they cannot base their movements, plans or actions on what President Donald Trump says. His latest delusional adlib, at a meeting where no attendee wore a mask, introduces a theory about the COVID-19 virus. He said that it will “go away without a vaccine.” He provides no evidence other than a mention that other viruses went away. Had Limp Brain Donnie googled the subject, he would have seen that many past viruses had no cures. From the Baylor College of Medicine web site, we see that plagues such as HIV/AIDS, Dengue fever, Malaria, Respiratory Syncytial Virus and many more have no cures.

To make matters more clinical, we have a vaccine for smallpox, but that doesn’t mean it’s eliminated. We have won most of the battles with polio, but Pakistan, Afghanistan and Nigeria have never eliminated it even though there’s a vaccine for this crippling disease. We are optimistic that the smart biology, chemistry, medicine and genomic researchers will invent a solution for the current coronavirus, but great ideas take time.

Even with many time-tested inoculations, some American parents refuse vaccines out of a fear spread by misinformed anti-vaxx groups. This bad parenting of not helping their kids with vaccinations has led to an increase in cases of measles. We thought we had it eliminated within the US twenty years ago. Thanks, crazy people. All of you should be on a list to be the last to get a COVID-19 shot; you know, wait until it’s proven safe.

It’s amazing that the lyrics of a Pink Floyd song provide a narrative that could be related to treatments and testing, “Okay, Just a little pinprick, There’ll be no more, ah, But you may feel a little sick, Can you stand up? I do believe it’s working, good, That’ll keep you going through the show, Come on it’s time to go.” Most rock experts will tell you the Floyd were singing about shooting up heroin before a big show, but temporary pills and poisons are a necessary evil when times are tough. We could interpret the last phrase as a call to get back to life, which is exactly what we all want to do right now. It’s time to go.

Now a spoiler alert as we get back to Shakespeare. The play doesn’t end well for Hamlet. He is killed with a poisoned sword, leaving the reader uncertain whether the events of the play resolve Hamlet’s struggles and self-doubt. We will probably never know if self-doubt is the main ingredient in Donald Trump’s self-made conflicts. His ping-ponging and flip-flopping have been seen every day during this pandemic. The man is obviously shaken and unbelieving that his words have not yet whisked the virus away.  Maybe tomorrow.

The Observer Research Foundation provides this, “Whether Hamlet was mad or not is indeed a question that has tormented curious high-school students for generations. He started out – Shakespeare tells us – by playing mad, but by the third act it is really not clear whether he had indeed lost the plot a while back.” As can be easily seen, Donald J. Trump navigates many different universes, but each share the flaws produced by alternative facts, outright lies and stunning scientific stupidity. Is the man insane or has he fallen into the trap of becoming the character he created?

The Observer Research Foundation asks, “Could Trump’s unpredictability be a sign of his inability to quickly calculate the costs and benefits of a dramatic change in US policy?” If only it was that simple. Are we facing the frightening reality that he cannot comprehend the dire impact of this virus? Perhaps that could explain how his staff convinces him to change so many of his pronouncements. Surely everyone who works at the White House knows you should NEVER drink Lysol or any disinfectant. It’s unbelievable they had to straighten him out a few hours after he suggested such a cure.

When dipping into Shakespeare and Pink Floyd looking for parallels and meaning, you will find deeply disturbing things. For example, Donald Trump has said openly that his greatest fear in life is being poisoned. Should someone sneeze on you right now, it could end your life. The virus is a poison of sorts, and its name is derived from the halos, or crowns, seen on each viron under electron microscopic examination, thus the “corona” part of the name. Poetically it could be called a crown of thorns, but I will leave that to the devout.

Painfully we have learned that three of the country’s highest-ranking health officials on the COVID-19 Task Force are now self-quarantining after two White House aides tested positive for the novel coronavirus. They came in contact with Katie Miller, the Press Secretary for Mike Pence, and a valet who serves Trump his meals and endless cans of Diet Coke. Katie Miller is married to Stephen Miller, one of Trump’s main intimates. Will the Millers self-quarantine for 14 days?

When new Chief of Staff, Mark Meadows, said the White House was probably the safest workplace in Washington, most people just shook their heads in disbelief. Trump and Pence may never get the virus leading to the terrible symptoms many people their age have and are suffering, but they are terrible role models. Trump didn’t wear a mask when he visited Honeywell and Pence didn’t wear a mask when he toured the Mayo Clinic. Such foolish, selfish clowns! Their painted smiles are covers for their deep-down panic of this pandemic. Fear vs. denial is a wicked drama. THIS JUST IN: Two of the Generals who attended the weekend Joints Chiefs of Staff meeting (without masks) have tested positive for COVID-19.

When I put on my cloth mask, I smell the odor of a presidential pandemic. I will remember that smell when this is finally over. I bounce between anger and numbness, but that numbness is definitely not comfortable. When I hear those Pink Floyd lyrics, “Just a little pinprick, There’ll be no more,” I imagine a time when we will be LIBERATED from this curse, but make no mistake. Trump will not lead you to the promised land. He has no map, no GPS, no plan, no clear understanding of the problem, and, as we have sadly learned, his promises are lies. His inane words and wishful thinking will not bring an end to COVID-19.

The song Comfortably Numb, has this perfectly appropriate observation about Trump, “Your lips move but I can’t hear what you’re saying.” Trump will go away one day, with or without a vaccine. We must conquer the virus with science and oust Trump with our votes.

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.


WITH ALL DUE RESPECT

Trump Train: No Conductor, Wrong Track

I think growing up in Pittsburgh put a bit of a chip on my shoulder. It’s not like us ‘burghers hold grudges or grievances, or stand ready to provoke disputes and arguments, but we can surely talk your leg off. Also, Pittsburghers have a built-in underdog status, which often comes in handy.

In the 1946 Marx Brothers movie, A Night in Casablanca, the female character, Bea, played by Lisette Verea, and Groucho’s Kornblow are both smoking and playfully blowing smoke at each other. As the cloud of smoke surrounds their heads, Groucho says, “This is like living in Pittsburgh – if you can call that ‘living.’” When we were kids, we were told that our hometown was inferior to other places.

The ‘burgh is a sports town. Our insecurity complex came to a screeching halt when our Pirates beat the New York Yankees in the 1960 World Series. We were brought to our feet waving yellow pieces of “terrible towels” when our NFL Steelers won six Super Bowls. Then there were the five Stanley cup wins by our Pittsburgh Penguins, which brought much joy to the hearts of Steel City citizens. The goal has always been respect, not just winning.

I always twitch when I hear a retort start with the words, “With all due respect.” It’s because I know that whatever they are about to say will be contra to my position. That’s fine. I want to know your point, perception or proposition. Afterall, you could be right. I will change my mind if you take the care and time to intellectually lay out the logic.

During the confirmation hearing for William Barr as Attorney General of the US, I believed he was a straight-shooter, even though he orchestrated and wrote all the pardons freeing those involved in the Iran-Contra Affair under President George H.W. Bush. Go ahead and Google it. You see, I have a thing about white collar crime and political infractions. Why are those people treated differently when they break the law? The lame excuse, “I was just following orders,” didn’t cut it at Nuremberg and shouldn’t in the United States of America. Oliver North was not a patriot.

I never liked Michael Flynn and was more than skeptical when Donald Trump appointed him to the post of National Security Advisor. I like smart generals and I have nothing against the military, but when pure ideologs make policies we often end up on shaky ground. Dick Cheney was of that ilk, and after spending a trillion dollars on unnecessary wars we saw the damage an ideolog can wrest when they become too powerful in US decision-making. Dick Cheney was not a patriot.

Take all that Trump has said during his three years in office, boil it down, and you will see a pattern of over-committing to a plan, then throwing water on the plan and, later, blaming someone else for the plan. It’s amazing to me that the guy doesn’t run into himself on his way to the bathroom in the middle of the night. Trump is a confused little boy with the thinnest skin of any human.

When William Barr took control of the Department of Justice, he was called to the Senate for a hearing, and that’s when we saw the real Bill Barr. For the life of me, I don’t understand why Barr didn’t change his title from A.G. to P.O. — Political Operative, because that is what he is. He’s not upholding the law when it comes to Trump. He’s out front, blocking for him, running interference and acting more like a bought judge than the Attorney General.

During his first post confirmation hearing, Barr claimed that the FBI “spied on the Trump campaign.” He seemed to say that there were some misdeeds by the agency when they checked out unusual and premature contacts between Russians and those in the Trump campaign. Isn’t that something the FBI should do? Why would Barr think that’s not okay? Is he a Russian agent?

Not too long later, William Barr was discrediting and misquoting the Robert Mueller Report. During his presentation, before the document was released, he basically said that he and Rod Rosenstein reviewed the facts and determined that there was no wrongdoing by Trump or his cohorts. REALLY? I read it and saw a bunch of indictments, admissions of guilt and sentences handed down. The report wasn’t nearly as vague or positive as Barr wanted you to believe. Without the terms being present in the report, it paints Trump as an unindicted co-conspirator and the main obstructer of justice in the probe.

With the thousands of other cases the Attorney General is responsible for managing and directing, we can only hope that his biases and distractions are not affecting the process of justice. Unfortunately, that’s not the circumstance. Keep reading; it gets worse.

I wasn’t surprised when Barr announced that the DOJ was dropping its charges against Michael Flynn for lying to the FBI. Flynn admitted to the lying and was convicted of that crime. I am sure Barr can read the law: “Making false statements (18 U.S.C. § 1001) is the name for the federal process crime laid out in Section 1001 of Title 18 of the United States Code, which generally prohibits knowingly and willfully making false or fraudulent statements, or concealing information, in ‘any matter within the jurisdiction’ of the federal government of the United States, even by merely denying guilt when asked by a federal agent.” William Barr cannot erase this law from the books and has broken the law by ignoring it.

I don’t trust Trump and I don’t trust William Barr. Had Barr been doing his job properly he would have dug into Trump’s tax returns and attempted to establish motives for some of this president’s bizarre actions. There should be a Special Prosecutor appointed to investigate the Attorney General, but we don’t have time right now — you know, election coming, pandemic, virus in the White House, stuff like that.

With all due respect, William Barr is neither a patriot nor a glowing light for justice. He’s simply an ass-kissing Trump sycophant. For those who really care about law and order in America, please step up and help throw Trump out of the White House in November.

I don’t respect people who cannot be objective when administering the law. I know that if Trump losses the election in November, his fake writers will be churning out the pardons for everyone Trump believes treated him unfairly. They will take care of those who suffered terrible injustices that often happen to rich and famous people like Martha Stewart.

I cannot wait to see Donald, Ivanka, Jared and all the Trump knuckleheads walking to the helicopter to fly them back to New York in January. Better yet, why not make them ride a train back to their tower? I don’t mean the Acela Express; I’m talking about the slow train. Maybe we could drop a few trees over the tracks on the way back. That will allow them to appreciate a true, common man traveling experience.

Two Books For Your Stay-at-Home

Available now at Amazon

 


THE FOUNDATION CRACKS IN FEDERALISM

Trump Dumps the DOJ Down the Drain

I wish schools did a better job teaching young people how our government works. American democracy has worked so well for so long because of the foundation the founders built into the design. We have three separate but equal branches of government, 1. Executive, 2. Legislative, 3. Judicial.

I’ll embellish a bit. Federalism is a system of government in which entities such as states or provinces share power with a national government. The United States government functions according to these principles and evolved from the “philosophy of federalism.” Using “federalism” as an excuse for not helping any state during a global pandemic is malfeasance of the highest order. Saying the states are “on their own” is negligent government.

Many countries around the world employ the parliamentary system, which is rather comical to most Americans. In a parliamentary system of government, the executive branch has the direct or indirect support of the parliament. This support is usually shown by a vote of confidence. The relationship between the executive and the legislature in a parliamentary system is called “responsible government.” In countries with Kings or Queens, the executive answers to the royal head to greater or lesser extents, but let’s get back to America, which is already in progress.

These days we often hear that when designing our democracy, the founding fathers never considered a person as outrageous, capricious, and disruptive as Donald Trump. The Constitution, Bill of Rights and the laws of this country were written with the idea that whatever abuses of power might come up would be batted down by the checks and balances built into the structure.

The Legislative Branch of our government proposes, deliberates and writes the laws which guide and constrain our way of life. If a law is not in the public interest, the chief executive can veto it. The Congress, with a majority vote, has the power to overrule the president and pass the law. If the law conflicts with the Constitution, the people can challenge the law and the judiciary will get involved. If the dispute goes to the top of the judicial structure, the Supreme Court can be asked to render a verdict. Their decision is final.

I would be naïve to suggest that a person, nominated by the President to sit on a court, is not selected for their previous decisions, written opinions and positions on a range of topics. Trump has plastered most federal courts with people holding extremely conservative dogmas, as evidenced by their past rulings.

When President Trump got elected, he placed Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions in the position of Attorney General. Our founders placed the Department of Justice under the Executive Branch for a good reason. If the DOJ was under the Judicial Branch, unruly judges could shape the law enforcement agencies and perhaps use them to coerce the Legislative and Executive Branches. If Justice was under the purview of the Congress, they could force the arrest of someone they didn’t like. In the hands of a bad executive, the Department of Justice could be used to decide who gets charged and how the laws are executed. That is what we have now.

Donald Trump, after realizing that his political appointee Jeff Sessions was going to follow the law and listen to the ethics people in the government, went on a highly unproductive campaign to discredit the man he nominated. Trump thought that if he shamed and embarrassed him, Sessions would quit. Instead, Sessions recused himself from the Russian investigation, which severely angered Trump. The Attorney General simply followed his legal obligation to pull out of the investigation because he worked on the Trump campaign.

We know from the many books with Trump’s name on the cover that he never saw a law he didn’t consider going around. The Donald brags openly that he knows the tax code so well that he pays no taxes. If he released his tax returns, we would know if this is true, but it does seem rather unpatriotic that such a rich person doesn’t want to give his fair share. He keeps saying how much he loves his country, but he’s probably paid more to keep bunnies and porn stars quiet than he contributed to his beloved country.

Trump snarls and barks that he has full power of the Executive Branch and constantly misquotes Article II of the Constitution, which is very specific:  The Powers of the President are: Serve as commander in chief of the armed forces, commission officers of the armed forces, grant reprieves and pardons for federal offenses (except for impeachment), convene Congress in special sessions, receive ambassadors, take care that the laws be faithfully executed, wield the “executive power”, appoint Cabinet officials and White House staff and Supreme Court justices. Nowhere in this list do we see powers to block witnesses, stonewall Congressional oversight or fire and replace government officials based on a desire to manipulate objective judgements and policies.

There are some shared powers with Congress, and they are: Make treaties, appoint ambassadors, Cabinet members and Supreme Court justices and approve legislation. Congress is generally involved in appointments by holding public hearings to determine the qualifications and abilities of those nominated. There is an assumed and codified need for Congress to have oversight of any government action that is counter to the public interest.

If Congress believes a presidential candidate should release their tax returns, they need to pass a law. When a government official is convicted of breaking the law and the President and his Attorney General give the guilty a get-out-of-jail card, by either dropping charges or pardoning the person, the Executive Branch might be involved in malfeasance of justice. The only backstop for this corruption is the Judicial Branch. If judges then do the bidding of the president because of political goals, we have lost our constitutional grounding.

Trump is a bad president who must be checked by Congress and the Courts as soon as possible. By dropping charges against Michael Flynn, Attorney General William Barr is kowtowing to the President rather than following justice and law. Flynn pled guilty and was found guilty on a charge brought by the DOJ. Why does Flynn get a do-over? Well, because he’s a friend of Donald Trump. Michael Cohen couldn’t even get out of jail in a pandemic, while Michael Flynn will walk free.

William Barr should be impeached. The earthquake is coming, and the dictator’s walls must fall.

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.