Trump – Season 2

This just in:  The midterm elections were just 3 days ago.  Let’s take a look at Episode 1 of Trump Season 2.

Within hours of the close of elections, Trump fired his Attorney General, Jeff Sessions.  He made it clear that he fired Sessions because Sessions recused himself from the Mueller investigation.  You may recall Trump was stunned by this.  He was certain that he has a Trump Loyalist in Sessions that would protect him from Mueller.

Now, the Constitution says the President can’t install a Head of Department on his own.  This is one the the checks and balances of the Constitution and is designed to prevent the President from appointing a lacky.

Trump appointed a lacky.

Without authority, Trump put in an AG that has publicly, on several occasions, denounced the Mueller investigation.  This guy wasn’t one of the top guys in the Justice Department.  He was just a lower level guy that Trump specifically chose because he wants the protection.

So…on day 1 after the mid-terms….Trump violated the Constitution to protect himself from prosecution.

Meanwhile…Other Trump supporters (AKA Republicans) down in Florida are calling it conspiracy that people in charge of voting in Florida are actually insisting that all of the votes are counted.  Apparently, to keep it from being a scandal, vote counting should have stopped at any point where the Republican candidate had the lead.

Most haven’t noticed that Trump also failed to install the latest round of Russian punishments.  I don’t have a lot of detail on this one.  But…Trump is meeting with Putin soon and I expect him to walk out of that meeting with a gold star stuck to his forehead for being such a good boy.

Then…there was the press conference.

Here are the highlights:

  1. Trump claimed losing control of the House to be a great outcome from a “Deal Making” point of view.
  2. Trump called out Republicans that lost because they “Refused his embrace.”  He failed to list those Republicans that lost after being “embraced.”
  3. Trump got into an argument with CNN’s Acosta and then had his press credentials revoked.  As justification, he used a doctored video to imply that Acosta was physically aggressive with a female aide.

It’s been less than 3 full days since the election…

Time to save the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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Trump-Publicans and Death by Gun

This just in:  In the middle of last night, shots were fired at a bar in California.  A deputy sheriff ran towards the danger and was killed.  He was a hero.  It’s important that we realize that he, and men like him, run towards danger every day so that we can stay safe.

His name was Ron Helus.

We can pause appropriately and then send “thoughts and prayers” or, we can do something to stop this madness.

Last year, there was a mass shooting in Texas.  Senator Ted Cruz got some face time on television and said, “We will do everything humanly possible to make sure this never happens again.”

Then he forgot all about it.

Let’s get to the root cause…not the guns but rather….the enablers.

We don’t combat gun deaths because Trump-Publicans refuse to allow evan an investigation into how we might go about this.

Let me say that again.

Trump-Publicans (There are no longer any Republicans) refuse to fund research into ways to combat gun violence.

Every time there is a “Death by Gun” in the United States, the people that helped pull that trigger are Trump-Publicans and those that voted for them.

Trump-publicans will race to mourn the death of the brave officer and ignore that the fact that they put the gun in the killer’s hand.

This is not new behavior.

Trump-Publicans claim to be the party of fiscal responsibility and yet they have overspent to the tune of $1 trillion dollars a year.

Trump-Publicans claim to be the party of the Constitution and yet they call the Free Press the enemy of the people.

Trump-Publicans claim to be the party of the Patriotism and yet flock to racist dog whistles, forgetting the lines “All men are created equal” from the Declaration of Independence.

Trump-Publicans think its appropriate for the President to change the Constitution by himself (see 14th amendment).

His name was Ron Helus and he died because half of the people in our country enable the hypocrisy of Trump and the Republican Party.

I’m not mad at Congress and Trump.

I’m disappointed in us; in who we are and in what we allow to happen.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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A Nation Exposed

This just in:  The elections are history and the verdict is in…about half the country thinks Trump is a great president.

To me, this is a huge disappointment.  I don’t care if everyone is a Republican or if everyone is from Mars.  I do care that half of our country listens to Trump and Fox News and reaches the conclusion that he represents what they believe.

Women that are raped should be taunted?  Hungry, poor and frightened mothers and children are an invasion?  Fear and hate equate to strength and public policy?  Lying is okay but the free press is the enemy of the state?

These are not “Fake News” perspectives.  These are easily verifiable states of being under Trump.

I saw a Trump supporter being interviewed on television 2 days ago.  Here is how it went:

Reporter:  But you know Trump lies about nearly everything.

Trump Supporter:  I know that.

Reporter: Then why do you support him?

Trump Supporter: Because I trust him.

I shit you not.  That is what she said.

Maybe the Koch brothers are right.  Maybe we are incapable of being trusted to govern ourselves.

Then again…maybe Trump is the greatest thing ever and I am the one that is being misled by Fake News.

Here is what I don’t want from the Democrats:  I don’t want them spending the next 2 years campaigning against Trump.  I don’t want them doing a Mitch McConnell stonewall against all things Trump.

Here is what I do want:

Protect the Mueller investigation.

Pass legislation about anti-corruption.  Or at least, get it out of the House and let the Republicans publicly turn their nose up at it.

Pass legislation about Gun Control, about Campaign Finance Reform, about Immigration Reform, about Healthcare, about tax reform.

Pass legislation to protect LGBT rights, to protect minorities, to protect religious freedom, to keep religion out of politics.

Get this legislation out of the House and let the Republican Senate say “no”.

In other words…Democrats…don’t be vindictive.  Be Progressive.

That is the path to saving the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

 

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Not Voting = Trump Support

This just in:  I think this will be my final post before election day.  As always…I have a few comments.

First of all…Bohemian Rhapsody is a great movie and has my strongest recommendation; especially if you were ever a Queen fan.

Now….onto politics…

I think I have discovered the difference between the way Democrats campaign and Republicans campaign.

Democrats tell you what they want to do.

Republicans tell you what you want to hear.

It’s no secret that Republican economic policies have been historically bad for the country but…they tell you that they are going to give you better healthcare and more income….all at no cost to you.  Free stuff!  Just what I wanted to hear.

It’s no secret that Trump is a racist.  I also think it is racist if you are an elected official and turn your head when Trump acts out his racist tendencies.  I also think that if you vote for these Republicans, knowing that they support a racist…you may have a bit of racism yourself.  Don’t worry though…you can justify it by saying, “I just like Trump because he says what he means.” – A compelling argument; one that makes Charlie Manson equally qualified to be your president.

Republicans tell you that immigration is the reason you don’t have a job.  They tell you that blacks are given opportunities that should go to you.  They tell you that non-Christian immigrants, that also happen to not be white, are terrorists.  They tell you that 5,000 starving women and children are invading our country to take what is yours.  This is all what the “closet” racist wants to hear – justification for their hate and fear.

Republicans tell you that if they give money to their billionaire donors…it will trickle down and you will get free money.  Just what you wanted to hear.

They tell you North Korea is no longer a threat, even as they continue to build nuclear weapons….Just what you wanted to hear.

They tell you America is finally respected by the world in spite of the fact that every country except Russia and Israel have said they think less of us since Trump took over….just what you wanted to hear (not that last factual part).

They tell you Democrats will take away your money and let every immigrant come in and vote and get free healthcare….just the reason to vote Republican that you were looking for.

They tell you that Climate Change is a hoax so they can cut regulations for their big donors.  Just what you wanted to hear.

If you are a racist…if you don’t believe in science….If you are a conspiracy theorist…if you think saying, “I will give you healthcare and education for free” means that it will actually happen….then vote Republican.

If you are not any of the above…then you might be a Democrat or, at least, an independent.

Whatever you are…go out and vote.

But remember…if you do vote Republican…then you are voting for someone that will support Trump no matter what.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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Trump = Republican = Trump

This just in:  The members of the Republican Party, in large part, don’t appear to agree with Trump on a lot of things.  However, publicly, they stand by him.  When it comes time to vote, they vote with him.  When he behaves badly, they stand quietly in the shadows.  I’m sure they see this as a way to protest while not offending Trump.  I see it as them being “Complicit Through Silence.”

So, let’s stop pretending that the Republican Party and Trump are separate things.

If you vote for a Republican, what does this say about your beliefs…should you believe everything Trump says?

  1. You believe that the President of the United States has the ability to change the Constitution on his own.
  2. You believe that 5,000 malnourished women and children represent an invasion that justifies sending more than 1 soldier per refugee to the border to fight them off.
  3. You believe it is okay to grab women by the pussy.
  4. You believe that North Korea’s leader is a good guy.
  5. You believe that Congress is passing a tax cut for the middle class while they are home on vacation.
  6. You believe that the Mueller investigation is a witch hunt.
  7. You believe that non-whites represent a threat to our country.
  8. You believe that Muslims are terrorists.
  9. You don’t believe that white people commit terrorist acts in our country.
  10. You don’t believe that minorities should vote if they are going to vote against you.
  11. You believe that corporations are people and should be able to influence elections with vast amounts of money.
  12. You believe that Trump weighs 235 pounds.
  13. You believe that saying, “We will protect pre-existing conditions” is more important than voting to “Eliminate pre-existing conditions.”
  14. You believe that NATO is a bad financial investment.
  15. You believe Putin is a good guy.
  16. You believe that a trillion dollar deficit incurred to give money to the very, very rich is sound economic policy.
  17. You think tariffs are a good idea.
  18. You think Climate Change is a Hoax.
  19. You think vaccines cause autism.
  20. You think Asbestos is not harmful.
  21. You think the Free Press is the enemy of the people.
  22. You think Mitch McConnell was right to delay hearings for Obama’s Supreme Court nomination for nearly a year but was also right to rush Kavanaugh’s appointment for no apparent reason.
  23. You think Obama was stupid to say he would meet with North Korean leadership without pre-conditions and you thought Trump was heroic to do the exact same thing.
  24. You think we should have a balanced budget amendment and you think the budget-busting tax scam/plan was a good move.
  25. You think a rumor about Hillary running a pedophile ring out of a Pizza Hut was true but an expose about Trump’s lifelong tax fraud is “just political smoke.”
  26. You believe in lowering taxes and yet you want a military that can conquer the entire world all by itself.
  27. You are a conservative which means that you want to go back to the mythical days of an all-white, all-Christian country where the man runs the family and the woman stays home and keeps house.
  28. You respond to Dog Whistles like: (1) We are the party of family values, (2) We are the party of fiscal responsibility, (3) We are the party that believes in the Constitution, (4) We need to build a wall to keep illegal immigrants out, (5) We need to keep people from coming to our country from non-Christian countries.
  29. You respond to fear rather than reason.
  30. You listen for what you want to hear; choosing to believe that rather than investigate what may actually be true.

Now…these are just my observations.  I haven’t talked to every Republican out there and I’m actually quite certain that the above represents the minority of them.  However, there are enough people that fit the above descriptions to make a difference.

If the above characteristics don’t fit an American that you want…then vote!

Up, up and away…

Jim

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Trump’s Hail Marys

This just in:  We all know that Trump lies.  There are questions about his actual understanding of this.  At times, he actually doesn’t seem to know that he’s lying. There are times when he lies in the face of direct evidence to the contrary.  He even sometimes lies by having two consecutive sentences contradict each other.

In the end, we throw up our hands and say, “Perhaps he’s just insane.”

However, Trump has really ramped up the Lie Factory output in recent days.  Let’s look at a couple of his big ones.

The 10% tax cut:  Trump announced this at a rally.  He claimed that there would be a 10% tax cut passed in a week that would target the middle class.  Here is the problem with this.  No one, anywhere, knew about this.  Congress, which takes months to craft a tax cut had no idea what he was talking about.  In fact, he said, “next week” when in fact, Congress was on recess and would not even be in town next week.

He just made this up.  Everyone knew he made it up. And yet, the people at the rally applauded loudly.

There is the Caravan Lie.  I’ve already covered this biggie.  However, let’s not lose track of what this lie really is – A Dog Whistle to his racist base that wants non-whites kept out of the country.

Now he claims he has the ability to change the Constitution of the United States by Executive Order.  He wants to get rid of the 14th Amendment which says that if you are born in the United States, you are a citizen.  This is just another Dog Whistle calling to White Supremacists as Trump continues to try and keep American white.

I might go another way than Trump on this issue.  I might suggest that if your dad was wealthy enough to buy you 5 draft deferrals, you lose your citizenship.

Trump claimed “riots in California” over sanctuary cities.  Need I say it….Dog Whistle.

This entire immigration deal is about white supremacists. I’ve been saying for well over a year, “We need more immigrants, not less!!”  Our economy is stalling due to lack of labor.  We need more people.  Finally, I saw an economist on television say this very same thing.

Election Day is just 6 days away.  If you are like me, you don’t vote along party lines but rather, you vote for the best candidate.  This year is different.  All Republicans are complicit in Trump’s Path of Destruction.  They are either complicitly silent or actively supportive of him.  A vote for a Republican is a vote for Trump.

Knowing that, vote next week (or earlier if you can).

Help to save the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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“Let there be fear!” – Republican Platform

This just in:  I first went snorkeling in the Philippines. Having just been stung by a jellyfish, my assumption was that everything in the water wanted to kill me.  So, I put on this mask which only let me see what was straight ahead.  I ended up swivelling my head back and forth the entire time.  I was afraid of what I couldn’t see.  I was afraid of the unknown.

I’ve carried this experience with me for decades.  I use it in my professional life where I am a Change Agent.  I have found that people resist change, in large part, because they “know” the current situation while the new situation is “unknown.”  When I educate them and take away the “unknown”, I also take away the fear and resistance.

This brings me to the Republican Platform; a platform which can be summarized in the following way: “Create fear and fight any information that would take that fear away.”

A prime example is the issue of immigration.  Yes, we should not let illegal immigrants into the country.  This doesn’t mean that we need a wall.  This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t find ways to make it easier or faster for people to enter our country.  In fact, if we are to continue our economic growth, we need immigrants by the millions.

Republicans say, “Democrats want open borders.”

Republican say, “The caravan coming up from Mexico is filled with terrorists, gang members and diseases like leprosy.”

Republicans send 5,000 troops to fight off the caravan.

If people knew the truth, none of this would matter.  The caravan is made up of less people than it takes to fill a high school football stadium.  It’s made up of women and children.  When they get to the border, they will have the same rights that every other person has when they come to our country.  5,000 troops is about one soldier per child.

This is easy information to research.  Get online and look it up.

The problem is, too many Republicans are hearing what they want to hear and therefore look no further for answers.  They want Non-Whites out of the country and if they need to fear this caravan to justify that…then that is what they will do.

This same fear is applied elsewhere.  We drop out of trade agreements because, “They are unfair and the world is ripping us off.”  This is nonsense but…creates fear.

We keep Muslims from entering the country to appease the Conservatives (those that long for a pretend history of white and Christian America) and we use fear of terrorism to justify this.

The Far Right (A combination of Republican and Red Bull) send out pipe bombs and shoot up a synagogue.  Republicans see that this is causing fear so they immediately say, “Democrats are blowing themselves up so that you will blame Republicans.”

Trump has said that without his guidance, the United States will turn into Venezuela.  That is fear.

Trump calls the press an Enemy of the State.  This is an attempt to keep you from reading and thus believing any narrative that didn’t come from him.  He wants you to be fearful and knows that knowledge will make that more difficult.

My recommendation is twofold.  First…read a book.  If you want to understand tariffs, watch a couple of youtube videos on the issue.  If you want to understand the Fed and interest rates, take 15 minutes and you’ll understand.  If you want to find out about the world…watch a combination of sources.  If you want to know what the Republicans are doing about healthcare…it’s all online.

Secondly…vote.  I truly believe that if everyone in American understood the Republican stance on any issue, they would turn away from them.  Well…almost all.  There are white Nationalists that understand Trump completely and he is their man.

Time to save the world.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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The King of Lies

This just in:  We all know that Trump lies.  What we need to remember is that the entire Republican Party is complicit in these lies as they either remain quiet or actually stand and applaud as he makes stuff up.

We also need to remember that he lies because his base eats those lies up like Tic Tacs.

I challenge you to go to a Republican voter and ask them:  “How will Trump pass a 10% tax cut next week when such a bill has not even been written or discussed and Congress is actually not in session?”

Trump pulled this tax cut out of thin air and his fans went bananas.  Such a great leader to tell us that he is going to give us a tax cut!  Not a one of them said, “Hey…this smells like bullshit.”

Trump justified his belief in Saudi Arabia story by using money and jobs.  You may recall that the Saudis essentially said, “The journalist was playing jump-rope and fell.  When he hit the ground, he fell against a bone saw that completely dismembered him.”  Trump has claimed the Saudis have $110 billion in orders from the United States.  He then raised this number to $450 billion.  The true number is about $3 billion.  That’s right….three billion.

Out of thin air, Trump announced that people in California are rioting over Sanctuary Cities.  This is not happening.  He just made this up; probably a second before he said it.

Then there is the Army of Illegal Immigrants coming up from Honduras.  Keep in mind, the size of this “army” is about what you’d find at a mid-sized high school football game.

With no evidence, Trump claims that there are Middle Easterners and MS13 gang members in the caravan.  He just made this up.  By the way, Middle Easterners are welcome to apply for entry into the United States.  Trump throws that in there because he knows that stressing the “non-white” makeup of the crowd will play well to Republicans.

We have two problems here: (1) Trump lies about everything and (2) Republicans are too intellectually lazy to question him.  They just believe.

Now, not all Republicans are intellectually lazy, just like not all Republicans are racist.  However, to vote Republican is to support a racist President and a Party that subtly panders to the racist component of its base.

The only way to get out of this is to vote.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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Vote next month

This just in:  When we go to vote next month, I think it is very important to remember that a vote for a Republican is a vote for Trump.  If you like Trump, then vote Republican.  If you don’t like Trump but like a Republican candidate, remember that candidate will do whatever Trump tells him and his party to do.

I’m in a bit of a hurry but I wanted to throw together a list of the latest Trump issues…

Trump is making the United States look evil by being the only country in the world that is willing to accept that a journalist was accidentally killed and dismembered by the Saudis.

Trump is getting ready to pull out of the Nuclear deal with Russia that was signed in 1987.  Yes, Russia is cheating.  Yes, the existing deal ties our hands with respect to the growing China threat.  However, is quitting the deal before an alternative is in place really what we want to do?  With no deal, we are guaranteed to enter a new global arms race.

Other deals Trump has pulled out of include NAFTA, TPP, Paris Climate Accord, contractual agreements with people that did work on his hotels.

Did you know that the tax scam passed by the Republican Party had a last minute inclusion that would allow real estate people to not pay taxes on profits like the rest of us?

Trump told a rally the other day that it was a good idea to beat up a journalist.

The NY Times has published proof that Trump owes $400,000,000 in back taxes.   This same article says “Trump got about $400 million from his day, not the $1 million he claims”.

Trump tweeted that a woman has a face like a horse.

Trump made fun of a woman that claimed she was sexually abused.

Republicans blame the high national debt on Social Security and Medicare instead of on the Trillion Dollar tax cut they gave to billionaires.

Trump falsely claimed that people in California were rioting in the streets because they wanted to get out of sanctuary cities.

While working hard to abolish every part of Obamacare, including “pre-existing” conditions, Trump claimed the Democrats were trying to get rid of “pre-existing” conditions.  In other words, he knows what voters want and is claiming that he is trying to get it while actively working to get rid of it.

Trump is acting like 5,000 people crossing Mexico as they look for a better life for their families is actually a Red Hoard that needs to be fought off using the national guard.

Recent emails show that Trump has ordered that rationale for getting rid of Endangered Species protections be kept quiet.

And here is the biggie…

Trump is now conferring with White House officials to find a way to tie up election results in court should the Democrats look like they are getting ready to take control of the House and maybe the Senate.

All of this is supported by the Republican Party.

Time to save the world….VOTE.

Jim

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Immigration – The Racist Dog Whistle

This just in:  Trump and the Republican Party are hanging their hats on the immigration issue.  This is really saying, “We are the party of white people.”

Let’s unpack this a little bit to see why I might say this…

I was watching Republican Rick Santorum on CNN this morning.  He actually said, “Democrats are campaigning for open borders.”

When it was pointed out to him that no Democrat has ever said that, Santorum responded with, “They are saying that everyone has an opportunity to come to the United States.”  He is falsely claiming that this is the same as saying, “The doors are wide open and you can come right in.”

What Democrats are saying (and everyone should also be saying) is that you have an “opportunity.”  This means everyone is welcome to apply.  Everyone is welcome to knock at the door and seek a life in the United States.  Everyone has the opportunity to come.  It does not say all will make it through the door.

Santorum also said, “Immigrants are taking all of our low paying jobs.”  The term “all” is the problem here.

Our country has more jobs that people to fill them.  There are plenty of “low paying jobs” if someone wants one.  I know this because I work in manufacturing all over the country and every site has the same complaint: “We can’t expand our operations because there are not enough people to fill the jobs.

So….Both of his points, (1) Democrats want open borders and (2) They are taking our jobs, are false.  However, if you want to keep Non-Whites out of your neighbor, then you will find the anger you need to support this nonsense.

But let’s continue…

Barely a day goes by when I don’t see a headline where a Republican official is found to be a member of a white Supremacist group.  This does not mean that if you are a Republican, you must be racist.  What it seems to say is that if you are racist, it is very likely you will respond to Republican Racist messaging; messaging like “Mexicans are taking your jobs.”

Immigrants commit crimes at a higher rate than White Male Americans…right?  Wrong.  You will certainly find that some immigrants commit crimes, but data shows that they do it at a far lower rate than American Citizens.

Immigrants come to our country to get free food and healthcare…right?  I suppose you could argue this because they are looking for a better life.  Many come here to escape rampant crime or extreme poverty.  However, when they get here…they go to work.  They pay taxes.  They buy stuff.  They build stuff.  They contribute to our economy.

So, the racist says “They are taking our jobs and just come here for free stuff.”

These same racists vote for people like Trump who, according to the state of New York, didn’t pay about $400,000,000 in taxes that he owed.

So, immigration issue is about race.  It’s not about jobs.  It’s not about the money.  It’s about non-white people and the need to hate them.

If you are a Republican and vote Republican, you are supporting this type of belief.

Up, up and away…

Jim

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