LAWYERS, GUNS & MONEY 2

Trump’s Inability to Lead

Back in May of 2017, I used this same title on a blog post (See Here). And like a lightning bolt hitting the exact same spot, we find ourselves back at the beginning of this horrendous administration. During that 2017 event, administration lawyers attempted to cover-up the news that former General Michael Flynn could be compromised by his lies and activities.

In Warren Zevon’s classic song, Lawyers, Guns and Money, one line sticks out, “Send lawyers, guns, and money, the shit has hit the fan!” And for Trump, “it” seems to keep hitting the twirling reality of Washington. In many cases, the President picks the stuff up and throws it upon himself, like an orange orangutan.

Lawyers are important people. We have one in our family and they defend and work within the system to make sure injustices don’t fall on any human standing on our soil or acting on behalf of this country. What we see in this latest Trump fiasco is a failure to follow the principles of the legal profession. Rudy Giuliani is a lawyer who used guns and money to shake down the Ukrainian government.

Follow this logic. Giuliani is a lawyer. We assume, because he was a prosecutor in New York, that he is a member of the New York bar. His license to practice law will remain intact as long as he follows the rules and policies of that body. We do not know if Donald Trump has a contract with Rudy or if he’s paid him a retainer. Let’s assume Rudy is at least a little smart and not working for free. He has declared himself the President’s personal lawyer. By law, that means he may work on Trump’s personal business and affairs. As has been stated by the State Department, Mr. Giuliani does not speak for the US Government, meaning that he is not an agent of the United States and probably does not have security clearance. Giuliani is acting on behalf of Donald Trump, personally.

This brings us to other kinds of attorneys. There are counsellors to the White House who are part of the government. They decided to move politically damaging meeting notes from one server to another one. They acted on the justification that they were protecting the President. They broke a law while working for Trump and, without a whistleblower complaint, they might have gotten away with it. Trump is the boss of the White House and he has admitted that lawyers attempted to hide the text of that call from others. It was not a top-secret document and was eventually released by the Donald, himself. This is much like the bygone Watergate era, when White House insiders admitted that the president recorded all of his Oval Office calls.

Lawyers sometime get rendered speechless by a client’s unknowing confession to a crime. By talking so much on TV, I suggest that Rudy Giuliani has caused more harm to Donald J. Trump than to Joe Biden and his son, Hunter. Giuliani’s lack of discipline has overturned more breadcrumbs than a drunken deli worker. The actions Rudy took for Trump on the Ukraine affair were done as a personal lawyer; thus, those actions are designed to help his client personally. The request for the Ukraine president to open an investigation was made to help Trump’s reelection campaign.

It’s official business when lawyers in certified roles, with security clearances and titles within the government, do the business of the administration. The government and the bar associations can discipline attorneys who break the law, disregard policies or run afoul of ethics departments and their inspectors. Rudy may not have broken any laws with his badgering of the new President of Ukraine, but he certainly exposed Donald Trump as a ruthless, lawless piece of shit. Bring on the fan!

So far, we have seen two kinds of lawyers in this story but we cannot end this report without mentioning a third kind of lawyer, one who should have known better. He’s Attorney General of the United States of America William Barr. The Justice Department knew of these memos and was aware that a national security lawyer urged the White House to move the readout of the call with Ukraine to a super-secret computer. What did William Barr know and when did he know it? Did William Barr have anything to do with the “nothing to see here” ruling on the whistleblower matter with Ukraine? Was Barr involved with the White House to help cover up the coverup? And, more importantly, do we, the taxpayers, get a discount on a double impeachment?

One of the other lines from the Zevon classic is, “An innocent bystander, somehow I got stuck between a rock and a hard place…” And yes, the “innocent bystander” in this narrative is the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky. He’s just trying to fortify his country against the angry Russia bear breathing in his eastern border face. This ally is indeed caught between a rock and a hard place. What Mr. Zelensky really needs are lawyers, guns and money. And Donald Trump needs to shut up and start to help people who are strategically important to our security. You know, America First!

Read About The Country We Love

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 TO MATRICULATE

Trump Never Graduated to President

All the information we have received in the last week about the inner workings of the White House is astonishing. If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know I have little respect for the character of the man who heads our country. There are some people who might defend his actions and administration, probably based on their party affiliation, but as a nation we are at a fork in the road.

We have a simple problem here. Donald Trump has admitted that he pressured the President of Ukraine to dig up dirt on his political opponent, Joe Biden. We learned this with the release of the general summary of a phone call that pushed a whistleblower over the top. In his words and action, Trump has confessed.

Now that we have the redacted complaint from the whistleblower, we can see that not only words of intimidation were used, but actions were taken to cover-up the matter by the President and his administration. What are the problems with this?

It is against the law for a foreign nation to do anything to disrupt or affect our elections; we learned that in the Mueller report. The President has decided that he needs help to defend himself against Joe Biden, who in latest polls looks very viable. So, Trump attempted to get Ukraine to investigation Biden and his son in their court system. He wanted a juicy story he could use to damage Biden. Trump withheld military aid to Ukraine in order to get the new Ukraine President’s attention.

In his testimony to the House Intelligence Committee (9-26-2019), Acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire may have defended his handling of the explosive whistleblower complaint against the President, but he also shed some light on the process under which the intelligence committee handles complaints and why he went to the White House lawyers and the Justice Department before he went to Congress. These actions seemed a little less onerous before release of the whistleblower report, available below.

Here are some quick points: The President has the right to declassify any document or finding, but does he or she have the right to classify anything that happens in government as top secret? How do we preserve transparency in a democracy if this concept is allowed to stand? We should ask to see the verbatim record of the call with the Ukraine President; maybe there is more to learn. And who will investigate this matter from this point onward? Did the DOJ just opt out of its duty?

The President of the United States should never instruct the Department of Justice, the State Department or any other part of the Executive Branch of the government to help his private lawyer to do political work in another country. Even the Acting Director of National Intelligence, Joseph Maguire, says he doesn’t know if Rudy Giuliani has the necessary security clearance. Maguire can’t even articulate what Mr. Giuliani does for the administration or the President. If he’s the director of the US intelligence effort, why wouldn’t he know exactly what Giuliani is doing on foreign soil? Obviously the DNI is out of the loop with respect to Ukraine.

According to the whistleblower complaint, government workers in the White House were discussing the fact they had witnessed abuse by the president for personal gain. The complaint discloses that White House lawyers were so worried about what President Trump said on a phone call with a foreign leader, they changed the procedure related to how certain transcripts are archived and stored. This is dangerous. They have a secret server. Where have we heard this before?

We have learned that Donald Trump was not only trying to get the country of Ukraine to investigate his rival, but Trump was attempting to collude with another leader to affect the 2020 election. This is not some “collusion allusion” as the Donald likes to chant. This is corruption right out in the open. COLLUSION is back!

US Ambassador Yovanovitch, who was recalled from Ukraine and would know more than anyone else about Ukraine politics and what happened, should be called to testify before the Intelligence Committees of both the House and Senate. This complaint is a giant red flag screaming for more investigation. One could say it might be time for another Special Counsel, but it’s impeachment investigation time now. People want the Congress to get to the bottom of all the corruption.

The fatal flaw with Donald Trump is that he never graduated from politician to president. He simply doesn’t know what a president does, how a president should act, or the sacredness of the presidency. He has soiled the office.

The miserable part of all this is that Russia is involved, again. If we only knew what is in Donald Trump and his family’s tax returns, we might learn and understand why Putin is so important to him. For the severely impatient in the audience, this will take a long time. It’s much like trying to fell a redwood tree with a cardboard saw. You can do it, but the work involved is arduous.

20190812_-_whistleblower_complaint_unclass

Read About The Country We Love

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.


RECUSE OR RESCUE?

Trumped Up Calls for Investigation

We are living with a liar in the White House. Hardly anyone disputes that Donald Trump will say anything to win an argument, but what is really going on? It’s just another day in the ever-growing money-oriented political game that has hijacked our government. Why does this have to be the norm in the “greatest country in the world?” Let’s look at the broken promises and harmful premises of the 45th President of the United States.

Donald Trump wants to own the judge. It’s an old trick in local city politics and this far-reaching corruption must be stopped if we want a stronger democracy. In the good old days of small-town corruption, you could simply throw a bribe to an official to get whatever you wanted. Trump sees his presidential position as all powerful. He doesn’t think through what he’s about to do, say or release. The summary of the phone call with the President of Ukraine shows clearly who Trump really is; you scratch my back, I’ll scratch yours. He imposes quid pro quo in everything he does. How can he possibly say there isn’t a transaction in just about every action he takes? Why did he release the transcript? Why?

When the whistleblower complaint was given to the Justice Department, they decided that there was nothing criminal about what took place with the Ukrainian President, but Trump felt a need for them to investigate this matter. Trump has Attorney General William Barr to protect him, but in this case Barr’s name was brought up on the call as the Donald asked a favor from the new President of Ukraine. Trump urged Ukraine to work with Rudy Giuliani and William Barr. So, why wouldn’t William Barr rescue himself from the decision to release the whistleblower complaint to Congress or determining whether criminal activity was done by the White House? Well, it’s because Trump paid the judge; he owns him. If William Barr doesn’t recuse himself, he should be impeached as well.

Trump has asked the DOJ to rescue the newest Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh. I’m not sure why Brett would need to be rescued from the authors of a book about him, but Trump seems to think the government has a right to ignore the First Amendment. If Trump fought as hard for the First Amendment as he does for the Second Amendment, he would be a much better president.

You can read the transcript (PDF below). It’s easy to see the consistent manner of Donald Trump and his continual asking for the order. Trump says, “I would like to ask you for a favor.” And there you have it. This is who our President is, and his Attorney General stopped any probe into this matter after receiving a complaint from a whistleblower. Our nation needs to be rescued from this trash dumpster fire.

Let’s focus on some important matters. Some of this should be dealt with by lawmakers. The personal lawyer of the president should never be acting as an agent for the administration. The State Department is complicit in Trump’s use of a personal attorney to do his bidding in a foreign country. That should be against the law.

As for the whistleblower law, it needs to be strengthened so that the executive branch shouldn’t be able to block a complaint that is supposed to go to the proper congressional committees. We need a penalty for any action that deters communication of whistleblower reports.

Donald Trump attempted to use the judicial system of another country to get dirt about his political opponent. Trump stopped the military aid that was going to the country in normal order before he made the call to the President of Ukraine. His attention on the call appears to be more about an investigation into Joe Biden and his son rather than helping an ally. And when the president was challenged by Congressional leaders about that aid, he released the transcript of the call. So, Trump is at least guilty of game playing or at most committing treason by interfering with our next election.

When the US Senate voted 100 to 0 and to pass a non-binding resolution that urged the White House to release the full Inspector General’s whistleblower complaint document, there is a consensus that something is rotten in Washington, D.C. And as the day ended on Wednesday, September 25, 2019, the whistleblower complaint was delivered to Congress, and was rumored to be declassified and released the next day. Will this time reasonable minds learn the truth?

Donald Trump is in the autumn of his presidency. As the colder winter winds start to blow through the streets of our nation’s capital, those who attempt to keep the leader warm in his lies and misrepresentations just might be damaged by association. And we will get through this crisis, even if Trump’s game ends. The more aware voters will see through the trumped-up charges that our president is attempting to foist on America, while those in the rapture of Trumpism become even more hypnotized into submission. Those who believe every lie and every excuse are the ones who need to be rescued from their ignorance.

Trump-Ukraine-transcript

Read About The Country We Love

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.

 


POP GOES THE POPULISM

Is the World Waking Up?

What is populism? It’s formally defined as a political approach that strives to appeal to ordinary people who feel their concerns are disregarded by established elite groups. We get that, and the pundits will never let us forget it’s why they think Donald Trump was elected president.

There are many “experts” who predict that populism will spread through the democratic nations of the world, but have they missed the most important aspect of every sovereign nation, the people themselves? There is a big debate in America about the classification of those “ordinary” citizens and what they really want. There is a sense that research is ineffective in predicting voter blocks. How many polls have been wrong and why are the pollsters so inaccurate?

Computer science has popularized the acronym GIGO (garbage in, garbage out) to explain outcomes that don’t match known results. Some blame dirty data for inaccurate results. In most cases, however, research fails to consider that people change their minds. Numbers don’t lie under pure math, but when trying to gauge the attitudes and judgements of the masses research can only look backwards.

One of the miscalculations of the Prime Minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, was that the populism in the United States with Donald Trump could be borrowed for his own election. The pollsters tell us how popular Trump is in Israel, but that could simply be a regurgitation of the propaganda from Netanyahu’s camp. The two recent elections in Israel demonstrated how many of its people want change. There is a timestamp on populism, and you can’t just pitch propositions, you need to deliver the goods.

In the UK, Boris Johnson has used a populism message of Brexit, even with lots of lies sprinkled throughout his propaganda, to gain power and force Prime Minister Theresa May out of the way. But now that the Brits have had time to take a sober look at what Brexit could mean, there is less of a populace mandate to leave the EU. At least, the prospect of a departure without a firm agreement and plan in place will cause economic damage and stir up emotional wounds in Ireland.

The UK Supreme Court has said that Mr. Johnson’s suspension of Parliament for five weeks is against the law. Supreme Court President Lady Hale said, “The effect on the fundamentals of democracy was extreme.” Of course, Johnson disagrees with the decision but he will obey. And that is what happens when the muscle of the mob of populism meets the well-thought-out rules, procedures and traditions of a country.

We shouldn’t get too excited about the rejiggering of policymaking; the sport is rather mercurial.  Having watched politics for more than sixty years, I know that changes come slowly, but there can be a whip back to a conservative viewpoint to offset a wild swing to more liberal legislation. Most people will say they want something done by the government, and they might be solidly behind it, until they get the bill. Conservatives tend to warn us about too much spending and control by the feds, while liberals like the safety net, even if it means more taxes. But those definitions don’t always hold. A fake conservative in the White House has driven this country into deeper debt without any regard for a balanced budget.

Donald Trump doesn’t care about the science of politics or the battle tested policies and procedures that have kept America strong for more than 240 years. He’s a loud talking fathead who yearns only for love while not taking the time to comprehend what any of this really means. His narrative is his own composition without any proof that it will work. It’s not good when the concerns of the middle class are disregarded by an established political system, but what happens when one man takes on the world and decides that it’s his way or the highway? This imbecile of a president has forced our country into a trade war with China and many people have suffered. Trump’s tax cut did very little for the middleclass, but really helped the corporate power structure buy back stock and gave the owner class a way to own more.

One of the results of missteps by populists is that people get frustrated and walk away from politics. It’s not a Republican or Democratic thing, but rather a calculation of knowing what people truly want and delivering the goods. The waves of populism change quickly, and those who believe their result lasts forever are fools. Donald Trump is slowly losing the power of populism and many now see that he is just another corrupt politician. Hopefully, those who have been hurt by his policies will wake up and realize that it’s not just the stock market, it’s a way of life. Are we better off with Trump? Some think so, while those who look forward will see that tomorrow can be far better for more people with a better way to distribute the wealth of our great nation. Populism is not a government; it’s a fad.

Read About The Country We Love

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.

 

 

 

 


LIKEABILITY AND TRUST

The Gold that Eludes Trump

A great salesperson will always make sure their customer is comfortable before asking them for the order. If a person likes you, they will be more inclined to buy from you.

Sometimes I like to discuss the similarities of the Greek terms ethos, pathos and logos, and how these concepts can help you to accomplish things with other people. Ethos is the spirit or culture of an individual or organization. The first thing another person should understand is where you stand. Can they trust that your goals will align with their desires? Why would you want to spend time with someone on whom you can’t truly depend?

Now pathos is less obvious, but equally important. Pathos is pity, sadness or a general empathy for another, the old “walk a mile in my shoes.” To gain a higher level of engagement with another person or nation, you must communicate a feeling for their position. You want to present to them a solution that you believe will solve their problem or meet their needs.

It’s only after establishing that you are standing on a firm position with your own culture and that you truly understand and care that you are ready to present a logical argument for your proposition or request. Trump fails miserably on all aspects of this ancient progression.

He opens every encounter with his despicable, transaction-oriented, me first attitude which lets the other person immediately know that they don’t matter. Trump has no empathy and openly asks the other person to focus on him. His viewpoints and the way he is perceived are more important to him than any agenda items that might be achieved. Many of the things Donald Trump says lack a logical explanation. He can’t look past himself to find a firm reason why what he wants is good for the other person. Even worse, many of his proposals are not good for our country. What happened to America First?

The latest controversary of a “whistleblower” filing a complaint about the President’s interactions with a foreign leader will not go away. And consider Trump’s odd behavior relative to his income tax returns. He guards them like secret documents that risk contempt of congress and court to keep us from seeing them. We cannot trust his word that they are under audit any more than we can believe what he now says about his conversation with the leader of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, the recently elected president who is the Jon Stewart of that country. This is not funny anymore.

Trump attempted to use the court system of Ukraine to go after his political rival Joe Biden, and his son Hunter, in order to have a talking point for the 2020 election. This is just weeks after Trump believed that he was acquitted by the Mueller Report. Perhaps this emboldened the Donald and made him think that seeking personal help in a US election from a foreign entity is proper. Leaders of our major ally countries know that Trump’s word means nothing and that they don’t trust him. They know that when they meet as a group (G7, UN) he fails to show at discussions about climate change, meaning he has no interest in this threat to the world. He has no understanding or empathy about the issue.

Maybe deep down inside this man knows the danger of pollution and climate change and is so embarrassed to have other people look at him in disbelief, especially his daughter Ivanka. Or could it be that Trump really doesn’t think polluting the planet and warming the atmosphere are causing extreme weather events? Clearly, he doesn’t see these as important issues. His “logos” or logic on matters of science hold them to be irrelevant. Trump’s preposterous position is this; things he cannot understand are not important. It would be great if we could tie his hands and sew his mouth shut, but it would be much more productive and fulfilling if he simply went away.

According to the latest stats from Real Clear Politics, Trump’s favorability stands at 41.8% with likely voters, while 53.4% give the President an unfavorable rating. In a recent NBC – Wall Street Journal poll, 69% of registered voters say they don’t like Trump personally, regardless of their feelings about his policy agenda. 50% say they dislike him personally and dislike his policies, while another 19% say that they dislike him but approve of his policies.

Most people cannot trust a person they do not like. In all aspects of his presidency, Trump continually acts on his emotions. He’s not a trustworthy person in word or action. As more and more comes out about Donald Trump, the godfather, attempting to bully the leader of a very important country like Ukraine, we will see his sole intent is protecting himself. His self-image is far more important than defending American interests and values. His priorities are wrong, and the culture of his administration is based on lies and disinformation campaigns. He has no empathy for people who aren’t rich, and his judgement is marred by not listening and lack of intellectual grounding. He’s a big fat clown in his red, white and blue circus suit. We must move on, tear down the tent, soon.

Read About The Country We Love

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.

 


WHITE HOUSE & WHISTLEBLOWERS

Trump Faces the Fire of Truth and Rules

One of the good things about Richard Nixon’s Watergate debacle was the new rules for oversight of the president and the executive branch by Congress.

Judgement is not a Republican or Democratic principal. It’s simply an ability to make considered decisions or come to sensible conclusions before the application of ethics, morality and legal interpretations. People like Corey Lewandowski believe in the old concept of the unitary executive, which is a theory of US constitutional law holding that the president possesses the power to control the entire executive branch. The doctrine is rooted in Article Two of the United States Constitution, which vests “the executive power” of the United States in the President.

Richard Nixon believed no presidential action could be unlawful. Does that mean the President of the United States could order a murder? Trump’s former campaign manager, Corey Lewandowski, said under oath in Congress that Donald Trump asking him to deliver a message to the sitting Attorney General to stop an investigation into him was not breaking any law. This was the unitary executive theory in action.

According to the Washington Post, “A whistleblower complaint has triggered a tense showdown between the U.S. intelligence community and Congress and involves President Trump’s communications with a foreign leader. Trump’s interaction with the foreign leader included a “promise” that was regarded as so troubling that it prompted an official in the U.S. intelligence community to file a formal whistleblower complaint with the inspector general for the intelligence community.”

Joseph Maguire, DNI

This just in, The Washington Post and The New York Times reported 9-19-2019 that the contacts at issue between Trump and the foreign leader involve Ukraine. In the past, some of Trump’s supporters, including his lawyer Rudy Giuliani, have urged the Kiev government to open investigations on his political rivals, including Joe Biden. Was this presented with a bribe of foreign aid, or perhaps, was the threat of withholding the aid part of the deal?

The acting director of national intelligence, Joseph Maguire, has refused to share Trump’s alleged transgression with lawmakers. Under statute he must do this within seven days. This has created speculation that the spy chief is protecting the president. Once again, Mr. Maguire may have broken the rules by taking this matter to the DOJ before advising Congress.

The good news here is that Intelligence Community Inspector General Michael Atkinson has determined that the complaint is credible and troubling enough to be considered a matter of “urgent concern.” All the paperwork has been filed and there is no getting away from the truth in this matter. While this news was breaking, recently fired National Security Advisor John Bolton was out making speeches about how bad Trump’s foreign policies are. It appears his words were leaked from a closed-door meeting.

William Barr and Donald Trump cannot keep this information from Congress and they know that once the complaint is disclosed to the members of the House Intelligence Committee it will be leaked. Presidents complain about leaks, but they are an important part of how the American public learns about the workings of their government. Transparency is good for democracy and helps rid us of deceptive and dishonest people who debase the very nature of freedom in the United States.

Checks and balances are at the core of our government’s strength. They were built into the process of governance by our founders who didn’t want the executive office to bear any resemblance to the kings and queens of other countries. When John Adams proposed to Thomas Jefferson that we call the president “your highness,” Jefferson was strongly offended and suggested the simple “Mr. President” as a suitable designation.

Donald Trump will claim he can say whatever he wants to any leader of another country. He might declare that it is how he negotiates, but somewhere in the millions of words he uses he should never sell out America for a deal. We know that Trump and his family are benefiting financially from his presidency. That is against the law. From the Mueller Report, we know that he was involved in obstruction of justice, and that’s also against the law. Now we are learning that he and his attorney general are blocking a whistleblower from being heard. That too is against the rules, policies and laws of this land.

There is a simple remedy for all this skullduggery. Congress should demand the disclosure of the whistleblower report. If acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph Maguire refuses, they should ask the Sergeant at Arms of the United States House of Representatives to bring him to Capitol Hill or incarcerate him until he complies. Yes, they have the power to do that and they need to play hardball on all contempt of Congress charges. Until the House of Representatives follows the laws and procedure of oversight, how we can expect the President to comply? Maybe they should start with the Attorney General and demand he recuse himself from this matter. Let’s get to the bottom of all this corruption.

20190919_084306 SEE THE RULES FOR WHISTLEBLOWERS

 

Read About The Country We Love

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.

 


IRANIAN DRONES AND DINGBATS

Trump’s Challenge of Inexperience

Over the years, I have noticed that insecure people have a peculiar habit of attempting to rewrite history. When they make a mistake with a word or phrase and are corrected by someone, after acknowledging the blunder they tend to overuse the correct form of the term. This brings us to Donald Trump.

Last June, another Trump Twitter malaprop popped out. In response to Iran shooting down a US drone, Trump decided NOT to respond because it would have killed 150 people. In his tweet saying that bombing Iran would have been a disproportionate reaction Trump used the expression, “We were cocked & loaded to retaliate last night…”  

It didn’t take the press and bloggers, this one included, to point out that the correct expression is “locked and loaded” and anyone with a modicum of military experience would have known the right form. I questioned how he could have possibly misused the term.  Didn’t the New York Military Academy teach him the right words? Trump told us he would always be using the “best words.”

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

It wasn’t surprising to see President Trump’s tweet about the US being “locked and loaded” in response to the drone strikes on Saudi Arabia oil facilities. He’s trying to eradicate his mistake more than transmitting a thoughtful message to his nation and the world. In fact, minions from Mike Pence’s office tried to explain away his aggressive remark before we had proof that Iran was behind the strike. They took the lock and the load out of his meaning and just confused the whole affair.

Trump should have waited before issuing a warning, but nothing seems to stop him from wading into a lake before he tests the water for quicksand. A few days later he made it seem like it wasn’t our problem, throwing the burden over to the Saudis. Doesn’t this schmuck of a president understand that oil prices, and thus gas prices, are set to soar here?

The use of the term “drone strike” connotatively makes it seem like a toy brought down the Saudi Arabia oil supply. The act was carried out by Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) and they didn’t need to carry bombs; they just had to fly into the right areas of the oil refinery. But here’s a bigger question. If the Saudi Crown Prince – MBS – is such a smart and rich leader, why wouldn’t those facilities have airspace security? And Trump should now be asking if the US refineries are just as vulnerable to an airstrike.

When we have a president who claims he knows everything and is smarter than all the generals; we have a problem. No one person can know everything. Sadly, the operation of the Trump administration is all about people coming in AFTER SOMETHING BAD HAPPENS to explain how it works to our thick-headed chief executive. He doesn’t plan, so he’s always trying to fix or correct the mistakes he’s made in the past. He’s a fool!

There are a lot of people who will agree that Iran was behind the launch of UAVs that hit the Saudi Arabian oil plants. While the Saudis are laying out the claim against Iran and trying to gain support from other nations, Trump seems to be unsure of what to do. What is the right answer? Does he start another war, when he claimed that his campaign opponents would surely get us into a war? Wouldn’t it be ironic that after walking out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action that was signed by the US and six other nations plus the EU he was the sole person left to decide what to do about Iran? The body of nations isn’t happy with Trump and they will be very cautious about getting anywhere near him on this issue.

Trump’s memory of what he promised on the campaign trail supersedes all current information and logic. He simply wants to trample on Obama’s achievements and attack those who disagree with him. He truly believes that when he says something is the worst deal ever everyone will see things his way. I wonder whether Trump even read the JCPA or comprehended its effect on the world. It’s funny how something that China and Russia thought was a good idea, isn’t a good idea for Donald Trump. He tore up the deal and now he alone might have to handle an emerging, nuclear Iran. Did Trump not understand that the agreement was deterring Iraq from their goal? Our Idiot-in-Chief’s lack of experience in diplomatic solutions is appalling. Really smart, successful people in the diplomatic world will never work for him, and that is the small problem. He is the true problem.

Read About The Country We Love

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.

 

 


PRESIDENTIAL DEBATES ARE BORING

Trump Handicaps a Race Without Him

You wanna watch but it’s hard, like watching a baseball game between two teams you don’t care about. It’s become clear that neither the network nor the moderators make a difference. The debate structure is uninformative; it’s just talking points and poorly written punches.

We know that the Tweeter-in-chief will drop his multiple putdowns and rebukes of those who are running on the other side. He will call them names and say they are all socialists, but he should be worrying. Afterall, lots of people really don’t like Trump. Polarity gets him attention, but it doesn’t bring more people to the party.

In the Spring of 2016, I sent a note to my assemblyman in New York. I’ve known him for a long time. He lived in my building. I suggested that a better presidential ticket would have been Biden and Warren. He explained he was a Hillary man and reminded me that she and Bill were his constituents. Monday morning quarterbacking is not my style, but I really thought Hillary had too many problems with women to bring the country together. Yes, women.

Debates that aren’t actual debates hurt both the Republicans and Democrats. The failed system of having a glossy, sparkling set with candidates standing behind well-lit podiums is a bit much.

Since 2016, I have contended that Bernie Sanders did more damage to Hillary Clinton in the debates than Trump or the Russians. Hillary was her own worst enemy at times. You remember, not traveling to the right states at the right time, telling coal miners she was going to put them out of business and fainting on 9/11. Not faults, no blame, just realities.

Because there were so few candidates on the debate stage, Bernie was able to position Clinton as a Wall Street darling who would kowtow to the money managers at the banks, just like Trump did once he was elected. Bernie’s enthusiasm for social programs is infectious, but the specter of increased debt for America is senseless.

I could march through all the candidates and point out their strengths and weaknesses, but that snapshot would be meaningless in such a mercurial process. In 30 days the statistics will probably look totally different. Call me crazy, but a moderate at the top of the ticket makes the most sense. Progressives always appear to be more active because they have a huge list of things they are going to do, but we know, most of what they are proposing won’t get done. I suggest the main job of a democratic president in the first 100 days will be nullifying every executive order that Trump has signed.

Being passive is not the way to get noticed on a stage of ten, but sometimes we, the voting public, must listen to the words and not get sucked into the emotional rapture.

In most cases, the incumbent president has an advantage because everyone has seen what has happened their years of governance. However, this president has created a greater gap between those in his base and those out of it. He attempts to create the illusion that all Democrats are part of some radical leftist conspiracy, but deep down inside he knows many rich Democrats. He used to be one.

All the excitement generated by a presidential run can be snuffed out in a New York minute. People are not strongly cemented to any one Democrat. They know Biden and, even with all his gaffs and misspeaking, he’s as comfortable as an old shoe. And at this point in American history, we simply need a president who relies on sharp experts and experienced aides more than his gut. Donald Trump isn’t at all smart about how to run a country. He’s made a ton of mistakes and the effects of his policy changes just might destroy the environment. No small thing.

Trump’s naiveté puts him in the position of needing to say who he thinks did the best job in the debates and what he hates about democrats. He can’t find it within himself to keep his mouth shut and let the process play out. His ego whispers into his frontal lobes, urging him to speak up and affect the numbers. What he doesn’t comprehend is pushing too hard on any one candidate might make their spotlight shine more brightly.

It’s sad that we haven’t found a better way to present ten or more candidates to the American public. Our flawed fake debate approach only eliminates people instead of producing and promoting a well-defined platform. Many newspapers the morning after the debate focused on conflict about healthcare. If the democratic candidates are still arguing about how healthcare can be fixed for the future, the party has a messaging problem that needs to be addressed.

Most people work for companies that provide healthcare insurance. The common man doesn’t get to pick the provider, the company does. The worker’s focus is how to navigate a system that appears to be working against them. Judging by the large deductibles and copays this whole matter is broken, but the Democratic party hasn’t come up with a platform specific solution.

The next debate will cull the herd a bit more, but it will be down to money and polls. What a country we live in! Democrats decry dirty money in politics but use contributions as an indication of success. I get polls. They allow us to judge who is getting attention on a national level. But that matters more to political fanatics and network news junkies compared to most of the middle-class who knows only some of the faces. They will forget about Andrew Yang’s money giveaway and Castro’s lame attack on Biden. In the end, it will come done to brand recognition and electing someone who can thank Donald Trump for what he didn’t ruin as the helicopter whisks him away from the White House in 2021. Anything less than that will be the destruction of America.

Read About The Country We Love

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 BOTCHED BOLTON BOOT

Just Another Neo-Con Job

Donald Trump doesn’t know how to hire the right people and he certainly doesn’t know how to fire them. But there is something much deeper here that escapes Trump’s ability to comprehend.

Trump is like P.T. Barnum, the circus man who truly believed one can hype their way into the hearts of the American public and fool them with illusions while taking their money. The world is more complicated than selling a ticket to the big top. In the end, most of the circus enterprises in America went broke because their owners couldn’t balance the cost of doing business with the activities of their competitors. Many circus companies have multiple names because eating each other up was the only way to survive. They ran up debt, exactly like Trump is doing with America.

John Bolton is just another Neo-Con with a convincing talent of combative rhetoric. In my book Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs, you will find a chapter titled The Three Legged Stool. It highlights the three forces that attempt to control our government — the Evangelicals, the rich owner class and the Neo-Cons. Some people fit into all three categories, but John Bolton is only a Neo-Con.

Dick Cheney and other Neo-Cons see nation building and regime changes as necessary methods of keeping the world safe and helping the US grow strong. Their mistakes have cost incredible amounts of blood in the streets and loss of treasures, but they are easily dismissed as a “greater good” the Neo-Cons believe they bring to world order.

It is no mystery that John Bolton deeply disagreed with Trump’s PR move to bring the Taliban to Camp David. It was also no surprise that one of the only Republicans to loudly voice disdain for this Trump folly was Liz Cheney, the daughter of Dick Cheney. You see, if anything, the Neo-Cons stick together.

Another Neo-Con is Lindsey Graham. On his web site he declared, “I have known John Bolton for many years and very much appreciate his service to our country in a variety of positions. John understands the world for what it is and the dangers that threaten America’s national security interests.” (I added the bolding.)

Deep down inside, Lindsey Graham knows that Donald Trump does not correctly see or understand the world. Graham, being a card-carrying member of the Neo-Con Club, was not about to put Bolton down because the Senator from South Carolina thinks and talks like Bolton.

The Donald doesn’t understand that right-winged white supremacists are not as powerful as the Neo-Cons in America. The Neo-Con, or New Conservative, movement was started by Jewish intellectuals in New York who believed the United States should do whatever it could to protect Israel. Trump gets that right, but what he fails to see is that Neo-Cons have no time for Nazis, the KKK or white supremacists. They feel only a need to protect the world from “evil doers.”

Not only did Trump dislike John Bolton’s outspokenness on many issues, he also figured out that Bolton was attempting to move into the “more important” position of Secretary of State. Trump hates people who are too aggressive. Bolton believed that Mike Pompeo, Trump’s boy, was looking for the exit ramp to run for Senator in his home state of Kansas.  Perhaps a miscalculation on his part, but in the end Trump needed someone he could spank for his stupid idea of doing a Taliban smores party at Camp David. Anyone other than Trump must always be blamed for something the press points out as asinine. I guess that is why we have a free press.

Bolton didn’t go quietly into the night. He quickly rebuked Trump, claiming he resigned and wasn’t fired. I’m not sure why that matters, but I do know that Trump never wants to be perceived as someone who has trouble working with people, even though the guy can’t work with anyone.

Over a hundred top people in Trump’s administration have been dismissed or resigned. As one of my favorite Trump loyalists said, “Well, at least he gets rid of the bad people.” WHAT? Those are all his people and he’s the reason they got into the White House. Once again, Trump claims he solved a problem that he created. What a douchebag.

I have never understood why civilian government appointees would be more militant and more eager to march into war than well-trained pentagon leaders. Who are these people who seek to use the military might of America as a political tool? Donald Trump would start a war if he thought it would guarantee his reelection.

This presidency will ultimately be seen as Trump declaring that EVERY DECISION he made was his decision. Those in position to give advice were only as valuable as the level of adulation they presented to his thin-skinned, narcissistic veneer. When an insecure person declares that they “took their own advice” on an important decision, we are in trouble. Who says that? The third person must hold more power than the person who is speaking. Now I am worried.

Trump is not the president for America today and he shouldn’t be the president tomorrow. As the world changes, it’s extremely clear that Trump will not change. He will never understand the world for what it is. He has damaged our standing and effectiveness on the planet. He is the biggest loser. Maybe his next reality TV show can be named Fat President Shrivels into Dust.

Read About The Country We Love

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.

 

 


SLEEPING WITH THE ENEMY

Taliban Taunts Trump

Our twitter president decided to call off a “secret” meeting he had scheduled with the Taliban last weekend at Camp David. I guess it’s not secret anymore.

Here is what the “leader” of the free world wrote: “Unbeknownst to almost everyone, the major Taliban leaders and, separately, the President of Afghanistan, were going to secretly meet with me at Camp David on Sunday. They were coming to the United States tonight. Unfortunately, in order to build false leverage, they admitted to an attack in Kabul that killed one of our great great soldiers, and 11 other people. I immediately cancelled the meeting and called off peace negotiations. What kind of people would kill so many in order to seemingly strengthen their bargaining position? They didn’t, they only made it worse! If they cannot agree to a ceasefire during these very important peace talks, and would even kill 12 innocent people, then they probably don’t have the power to negotiate a meaningful agreement anyway. How many more decades are they willing to fight?” (bolding added)

It didn’t take the Taliban much time to answer Trump harangue, according to the Guardian, “The Taliban warned on Sunday that the cancellation meant more American lives would be lost, while the United States promised to keep up military pressure on the militants.” Their reporting included this quote from Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid, “Its [US] credibility will be affected, its anti-peace stance will be exposed to the world, losses to lives and assets will increase.”

This episode exposes one of the major weaknesses in Trump’s brain. His actions are out of sync with a normal leadership timeline protocol. He skips steps in the negotiation process. He thinks a simple meeting is better than setting up a framework for talks involving requirements or proof of sincerity. He did this with Kim Jung-Un and things in that regard have only gotten worse. The North Korean leader has done nothing but increase his arsenal since he and Trump engaged.

Many Americans may not know what the Taliban is, but those who know would have cautioned Trump from going too far with them before he got commitments. The Taliban is a Sunni Islamic fundamentalist political movement and military organization in Afghanistan, currently waging war within that country. They are not a country. At best, they are a militia. Trump somehow thinks he can achieve a unilateral agreement with this radical group of militants and then hand it to the real government of Afghanistan. Who does this? Trump’s claim that he is meeting with the president of Afghanistan “separately” is insulting. That would be tantamount to another country talking to the Governor of California and going around the White House. Imagine how Trump would react.

For Mike Pompeo to go on all the Sunday morning TV talk shows and say that American forces have killed over 1,000 Taliban in the last ten days and that “while this is not a war of attrition, I want the American people to know that President Trump is taking it to the Taliban” clearly reveals how far we’ve gotten with the Taliban.

While Trump is complaining about 12 “innocent people” being killed, his Secretary of State, a position that is supposed to solve problems around the world with diplomacy, is bragging about killing one hundred Taliban insurgents a day for the last ten days. Who are these people in our government? How can this be the right time for peace talks?

Donald Trump thinks everyone else shares his lofty opinion of himself. Not true. The people who run other countries didn’t read his stupid book about deal making. Candidate Trump constantly said that he would never show his hand when dealing with international hotspots and military actions, but he transmits much of his intentions on Twitter and adlibbed press briefings. He’s a walking contradiction who shows too much. Trump has said he wants to get our troops out of Afghanistan and the whole world knows it. The Taliban considers talking with Trump an opportunity to get their country back and under their draconian control. Peace for us will mean no school for women. What a win!

Some news outlets are reporting that Vice President Pence and National Security Advisor John Bolton were against the idea of having the Taliban on US soil to talk to our President, but Trump is grasping at wins and thinks only in political terms, never applying diplomatic methods. In short, Trump dismisses the power of diplomacy as much as he denies climate change. To quote the former Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson, “He’s a fucking moron.”

Trump’s usage of the archaic term, “unbeknownst” is a sign that he finds comfort in being the holder of secrets. This is rather ironic when CNN is reporting that a US asset in Russia had to be recalled because of the fear that Trump cannot keep secrets. It’s all a ridiculous game. I think that Trump is still on the living room floor with his little army of tin soldiers. Instead of being a strong leader he plays politics and believes that he is a great salesman. It’s the same mistake everyone who supports him has made. They believed his biggest lie. If he cannot convince more than 42% of the country that he knows what he’s doing, he’s a substandard sales rep at best.

The Taliban is not a government. Why would we ever treat them as such? Even the lucky-sperm newborn Neo-Con Liz Cheney decried the idea of the group that harbored and supported al-Qaeda and bin Laden going to that sacred place called Camp David. The Cheney’s don’t like the Taliban and would have our country in a “permanent” war until they were eliminated.

To pour some salt in the wounds of America, Trump was going for a big PR win the weekend before the annual 9/11 memorial. What a thoughtless son-of-a-bitch. Trump is hurting our country and damaging the world more than any president in my lifetime. We must remember these things when we enter the voting booth.

Read About The Country We Love

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.