Everybody on one side says everybody on the other side hates Donald Trump.
No, I don’t hate him.
To be most charitable, I don’t care about him enough to hate him. If he were someone I encountered in life – at a bar, at a ball game, doing business, attending a gala, playing golf – I would quickly decide that he’s not someone I want to be associated with. Because he’s crude. Because he’s selfish. Because he’s conceited. Because he’s overbearing. Because he’s loud. Because he’s crass. Because he’s ignorant.
I know other people who are crude or selfish or conceited or overbearing or loud or crass or ignorant. I’ve responded to them by finding someone else to associate with and by finding reasons to not hang around with them. I’ve responded by ignoring them.
No, I don’t hate Trump. But I do hate – wait, let me think… yes, I do hate what he has been doing. Continue reading
The PPACA – Obamacare – has survived. In the past, the attacks have been skirmishes, often fought in darkness, intent on inflicting wounds to cripple the program – filing lawsuits, withholding funds, promoting language, lying. Now this latest assault – this failed assault – this Trumpcare – a frontal attack by the combined forces of the anti-Obama legions and their very best strategists, commanders and troops.
Yet the PPACA remains standing, while the attack force skulks back to their bunkers, dazed, confused, and more than a little disheartened. Continue reading
A fair and important question:
When a liar admits he lied, should you believe him?
Yes, this post is triggered by yesterday’s revelation by Donald J. Trump, Jr. He released “the entire email chain of my emails” that relate to a meeting between a Russian attorney and key members of the Trump campaign team.
The pundits and press and politicians are aghast … of course.
But here’s the question I want an answer to: was Trump Jr. lying when he denied having a meeting or is he lying now when he claims he did have a meeting?
- Trump, Sr., has tried to discredit the press (and other truth-tellers), using terms like “fake news”, “failing”, “dishonest” and “enemy of the people”.
- The press has revealed one discovery after another of interactions between the Trump campaign team members and various Russians.
- Trump, Sr., Fox News, many Republican officials, and Trump’s supporters dismiss the Trump-Russia allegations as “fake news”, “obsessions”, and “a nothing-burger”.
If you were Trump, Sr., how would you discredit all of your critics? How would you prove that the press is lying? Here’s what I would do: Continue reading
It’s the 5th of July. It’s Wednesday. It’s a good day to read the Declaration of Independence.
It’s a good day to celebrate those heroes who gathered in Philadelphia to battle, not with guns and swords and weapons of war, but with beliefs and words and thoughts and arguments.
It’s a good day to ponder the courage of these heroes, who put their lives in jeopardy by daring to sign their names to a treasonous document at risk of being hanged.
It’s a good day to wonder how courageous WE would be under such circumstances.
In the 1960’s, an infamous memo from the Draft (Selective Service System) described “manpower channelling” as an important part of the draft. Using draft deferments, the system could “channel” young men to behave in ways that were seen as “in the national interest”. Quoting from the memo:
In the Selective Service System, the term “deferment” has been used millions of times to describe the method and means used to attract to the kind of service considered to be the most important, the individuals who were not compelled to do it. The club of induction has been used to drive out of areas considered to be less important to the areas of greater importance in which deferments were given, the individuals who did not or could not participate in activities which were considered essential to the Nation.
… It is in dealing with the other millions of registrants that the System is heavily occupied, developing more effective human beings in the national interest.
Uncertainty damages business … and people too. Too bad about the student loan forgiveness plan.
I remember (in 2012) when the Bush tax cuts of 2003 were scheduled to expire. Republicans raised a hue and cry about the “uncertainty” that this cast upon our economy. Businesses didn’t know how to plan – should they expect those tax cuts to be extended? or will taxes be restored? or raised? or lowered? What to do?
Yet, now, these same Republicans are reveling in a new world of uncertainty – one that makes every rule and every law an uncertain rule or law. Every day, the Republican Congress is voting on another rollback or another repeal. Rules that applied yesterday may not apply tomorrow. Promises made are being broken. Businesses don’t know how to plan – what to do?
Well, here’s today’s uncertainty and this time it is being cast on those with student loans.
I’m watching the PBS American Experience episode “Ruby Ridge”. Sara Weaver, the daughter of Randy Weaver, is describing how her parents were preparing to move from their Iowa farm to living on a mountain in Idaho. She says they were adhering to the Biblical passages of “an apocalyptic future” and says
“Fear was a big part of it.”
As the episode draws to a close, she adds
“When you operate out of misinformation and fear, things can go wrong.”
These are words worth remembering – not just in the tragic and volatile 1992 “Ruby Ridge” case, but in our society in general today, and in the language that we hear from those who are responsible for guiding us forward as a nation.
Fear is a big part of it.
I’m still troubled by the idea of rewarding – and thus encouraging – the behavior of the GOP Senate in 2016 re: the nomination of Merrick Garland.
While two wrongs don’t make a right, rewarding a wrong encourages more of the same. There have to be consequences to misbehavior, especially intentional misbehavior such as the 2016 GOP Senate engaged in.
With that in mind, and for that reason – the Democrats should block all consideration of any SCOTUS nomination for the duration of this current presidency, regardless of the nominee’s qualifications.