Thursday, December 29, 2016

Cursory Remarks on the Current State of the Union

From: The Atlantic, Nov 2016

For only the third time since its founding in 1857,  The Atlantic endorsed a candidate: Hillary Clinton. Worth repeating  was The Atlantic's rejection of the other candidate:
...but we are mainly concerned with the Republican Party’s nominee, Donald J. Trump, who might be the most ostentatiously unqualified major-party candidate in the 227-year history of the American presidency.

Much to the dismay of the popular will of America,  and not as independent of the popular will of Russia, Donald Trump was elected by the Electoral College to be our the next President of the United States of America.

What the Hell?

Where does the Majority of Americans–those of us who voted for Hillary–go from here?

How could this have happened to America?

Congress said it is going to investigate the Russian intervention of our electoral process.  And Congress should–but it won't–investigate the Giuliani/Flynn connections to the FBI that affected the outcome of the election.

As for those who voted for Trump, we are ashamed of you.

 On January 23, 2016, in making a point about the loyalty of his followers, Donald Trump said, "I could stand in the middle of 5th Avenue and shoot somebody and I wouldn't lose any voters okay."

Donald Trump was right. No matter what he did or said, he didn't lose voters.  No matter what the Press discovered and revealed about him, he didn't lose voters. No matter who he bullied or ridiculed, he didn't lose voters.

And now he is on the doorsteps of the White House, and the majority of Americans are ashamed.

As for the Trump followers, those who voted for Trump–our brothers, sons, fathers, sisters, aunts, uncles and yes, former friends–they have lost our respect. They have made America morally bankrupt.

Do they really think he is going to make America Great again?

Drain the swamp! Did he?  Not by the looks of his cabinet choices.

And how about all those Russian connections?

Are you proud of yourself?

Aren't you afraid of what Trump can do to our country?

We are very afraid.

And we are ashamed of you for making us feel this way.

Saturday, December 3, 2016

Hillary Clinton's Biggest Mistake

I, like most Democrats, am still shocked by the outcome of the Presidential election.  Around the middle of October, it appeared that Hillary Clinton would become the next President of the United States.  Trump was imploding, Republicans were abandoning ship, and there was even talk that the Democrats were going to retake the Senate.

On October 19th, Jason Easely wrote an article for PoliticusUSA reporting that Trump's own campaign manager did not agree with Trump that the election was rigged: The Rats Flee the Sinking Ship as Trump's Own Campaign Manager Throws Him Under the Bus.

On October 20th, Nicholas Lemann wrote in The New Yorker about the disarray of the Republican Party and "Trump's apparently inevitable defeat:" The Long Decline of the Republican Establishment.

On October 21st, the website Five Thirty Eight gave Hillary Clinton an 86.5% chance of becoming the next President of the United States.  And it gave the Democrats a 73.5% chance of retaking the Senate!

Even the USC/L.A. Times Poll had Hillary ahead on Oct 24th and 25th!

What happened?

Rudy Giuliani happened.

Rudy Giuliani happened to be at the Al Smith Charity Event in New York City on October 20th.  And Hillary Clinton made her biggest mistake! She belittled Giuliani for calling Trump "a genius" for not paying taxes.

And Giuliani was not amused:   Huffington Post Article: Giuliani Was Not Amused....

On October 25th, Rudy Giuliani appeared on Fox and Friends, chuckled and said that the Trump camp still had a few surprises up their sleeve.  When asked if they were October surprises, he chuckled again and said, "You'll see...:"

On October 28th, James Comey released his bombshell that the FBI was looking into more Clinton emails.  And Rudy Giuliani was still chuckling!

On November 2nd,  Fox News' Bret Baier reported that an avalanche of evidence had the FBI heading toward an indictment of the Clinton Foundation.  And Rudy Giuliani couldn't stop chuckling!

Note in the tweets above what Gen Flynn said.  Also note Rachel Maddow's comment about the FBI leaks.

On November 4th, CNN's Don Lemon called out Giuliani for hinting about the Comey letter two days before it happened.  Did Giuliani use his FBI contacts to stir the pot and get even with Hillary?  One of Giuliani's companies represents the union of active and retired FBI agents.

On November 4th Fox News' Bret Baier apologized for his "incorrect story." And Rudy Giuliani was still chuckling!  Side Note:  Didn't Dan Rather get fired for "falsely" reporting about George Bush's National Guard Service?

On November 6th, James Comey reported that the FBI had completed their investigation and had turned up no new damaging emails.  But the damage had already been done.  On Nov 6th, the USC/L.A. Times poll had Trump ahead again:

48.2% to 42.6%

And Rudy Giuliani was still chuckling!

You know the rest.  The Clinton campaign never recovered.  Trump voters voted down the ticket.  Trump won the election, and the Republican party retained control of both houses.

And now Rudy Giuliani believes he "earned" Trump's nomination to be Secretary of State.

And yes, Rudy Giuliani is still chuckling!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Why Was Donald Trump So Popular?

I, like many other Democrats, still can't believe that almost half of America voted for Donald J. Trump to be our next President of the United States of America.

This post by Urquhart on Library Thing back in February when other Republican candidates were still standing might help us better understand Donald Trump's popularity.

Edited: Feb 29, 8:09pm 

Donald Trump is the archetype of many different strands of demagoguery and populism in America both past and present. However what makes his appeal especially deep to the American psyche in particular is his promise of not just a better tomorrow but a “Great” tomorrow.

America has been built on salesmen/businessmen ever since the Mayflower. In America in particular the traveling salesman has been a man imbued with great power or expectations for making possible a Great tomorrow. 

In the computer world, “consultants” are always promising to come in and “fix” all the problems.

In religion, evangelicalism offers everyone or, at the least, the “select” a great tomorrow.

The traveling salesman has always offered elixirs for relief, cures, or panaceas. Two movies exemplary of this are The Rainmaker and The Music Man. They are American to the core.

What many people don’t realize is that Trump is mining a vein in the American psyche that goes very deep. He is not just another fad or the usual demagogue that many might expect. He is an American demagogue that is inventing himself as he goes. He is writing his own playbook on the fly and it is obvious he is having a hell of a good time. 

The other candidates certainly aren’t. Consequently so many of the other politicians are grabbing on to his coat tails and have no idea where it will take them any more than he does. He has hit the “mother lode” all prospectors and politicians dream of and he is clearly thriving on it all.

To dismiss him as a fly by night who has no real traction is to do so at one’s peril. He is able to reach the American people and strike a nerve that no number of position papers of Hilary or Bernie could ever reach. He is mining the American psyche in a way that has not been done since JFK.

It’s the salesman with the promise of a Great tomorrow that Americans just can’t resist. It is the person who legitimizes the self-righteous hurt of financial failure or forced lowered economic and political expectations.

It’s the best show in town, and we could all very possibly be part of that show after November elections.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The Sound of Broken Glass

I expected to hear the sound of a glass ceiling breaking last night.  And it would have been a momentous moment, much like when President Obama won in 2008.

I did hear the sound of broken glass last night.  But it was the sound of a glass house breaking.  And the sound was deafening....

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Biggest Scandal Since Watergate

On the campaign trail last Friday night, Donald Trump called the Clinton emails "the biggest scandal since Watergate."  "Totally absurd," replied a Watergate prosecutor."

One of the biggest scandals since Watergate may well be FBI Director James Comey's double standard of releasing information concerning Clinton emails that may or may not be relevant, yet seeking to withhold evidence of Russian involvement in the Trump Campaign, "for fear of influencing the election."

The biggest scandal since Watergate, however, is the fact that Donald Trump is this close to becoming the President of the United States!   Of Trump, The Atlantic said he "might be the most ostentatiously unqualified major-party candidate in the 227-year history of the American Presidency."

Why is almost half of America voting for Donald Trump? Because America wants a change:  government is broken.  But Donald Trump, the poster boy for bullies, anti-immigrants, and women-haters is not the kind of President America needs.

But America needs more than Hillary Clinton as President.  It needs a Congress that is willing to work with her for the good of America.   Already, Republicans are talking about impeachment.  Moreover, Republicans are saying that they will not allow Hillary Clinton to appoint any judges to the Supreme Court–any judges throughout her term.  Give Hillary a Congress she can work with.

Hillary's choice of a private email server continues to plague her.  But one of the biggest scandals since Watergate is the fact that no one went to jail when 2 million  (or was it 22 million?) emails on the RNC server used for government business by Karl Rove and others in the Bush cabinet were deleted in 2007.

Some of the deleted emails pertained to the partisan firing of 8 Assistant U.S. Attorneys.  In December 2009 however, Politico reported that a deal had been struck to restore many of the 22 million emails.   What I find intriguing in the agreement are the emails that were designated as "sensitive."  Surely Karl Rove was not sending and receiving emails concerning national security on the RNC server was he?

Saturday, October 29, 2016

The Biggest October Surprise of All

The biggest October Surprise of all didn't come by way of the Russians, or via Wiki Leaks, but from a source close to home: from James Comey, the Director of the FBI.

If this were a football game, Director Comey would be flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct.  But this is not a game, it is an election.  And the stakes could not be higher.  Justice was not served.  Director Comey disregarded the Justice Department's long-standing policy of "not commenting on current investigations, nor acting in such a way as could influence an upcoming election."

By saying that the emails the FBI recently uncovered from a laptop "appear to be pertinent to the investigation," Director Comey directly influenced the election.  Director Comey personally rejuvenated Trump's flailing campaign and put Hillary's campaign on the defensive.  But how can she defend herself against unsubstantiated innuendo?

As for Lady Justice...

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Nothing New! Vote Blue!

The Party of No has already stated that they will block Hillary Clinton's nominations for the Supreme Court.  So what else is new?

And at the last presidential debate, Donald Trump said he would not accept the results of the presidential election–unless he was the winner.

That's nothing new...

After President Obama was reelected, the Republicans doubled down and swore they would prevent President Obama from accomplishing much of anything in his last term. In essence, they refused to accept the results of the 2012 presidential election.  And the constitutional system of checks and balances became government gridlock.

Vote the Republicans out of office!

Vote Blue down the ticket!

Saturday, October 15, 2016

A Face-In-the-Crowd Moment
Trump Opened Big Yap Once Too Often

Back on June 21st, Paul Papanek, a Los Angeles photographer/writer/producer, and independent TV commercial production consultant, posted a few scenes on his Facebook page from the 1957 movie, A Face in the Crowd.  The movie, starring Andy Griffith, is about the rise and fall of a popular TV and radio character named Lonesome Rhodes, whose final downfall comes by way of an opened mike.  Here's an image of Papanek's Facebook post:

On October 3rd, my friend Rose Scomello Patrissi shared Papanek's post. And I, in turn, shared Rose's post on my Facebook Page.  Here's an image of my post:

Only the day before, on October 2nd, Paul Papanek posted the video on YouTube, with the title: A Trump Face in the Crowd.  Here's a link to the video:

On October 7th, the whole world overheard Donald Trump's open-mike lewd conversation about women.

And on October 7th, Paul Papanek just smiled...

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Stronger Together v No Longer Together

The Democrats were all out campaigning yesterday:  Hillary Clinton, Al Gore,  Barack Obama, and Bill Clinton–more stronger together than ever!

Meanwhile, there was Donald Trump,  Rudy Guiliani, and–and–a-n-d...

The Party of No is now The Party That Is No Longer Together.

And who can blame them?

For only the third time since it was founded in 1857, The Atlantic has endorsed a candidate.  The first was Abraham Lincoln.  The second was Lyndon Johnson. And the third is Hillary Clinton.

As for Donald Trump, The Atlantic states that Donald J. Trump "might be the most ostentatiously unqualified major-party candidate in the 227-year history of the American presidency."

The entire article is a must-read:    clinton-and-against-donald-trump/501161/

Monday, October 10, 2016

Donald Trump: Last Misogynist Standing

Things did not bode well for Donald Trump before the Second Presidential Debate last night.  If the first debate was a shoutout, this one promised to be a shootout.

Republicans were desperately abandoning ship before the debate, jumping overboard to avoid the appearance of condoning Donald Trump's hot mike 2005 lewd comments about women.

But before the debate, Donald Trump posted a Facebook press conference where he introduced three women who had previously accused Bill Clinton of sexual assault, and one woman who accused Hillary Clinton of freeing a child rapist from jail.

Not surprisingly, the two candidates declined to shake hands at the beginning of the debate.

It wasn't really a debate. In reality, it turned out to be an unpresidential debacle at the All Is Not Okay With America Corral.

Early on, Trump was asked to explain his comments about women that were released the previous Friday.  He apologized but called his comments "locker room talk" and tried to deflect the talk to defeating ISIS.

When questioned again,  Trump denied any sexual wrongdoing and said that "he had great respect for women."

Hillary responded that people who listened to the tape realize that it represents exactly who Donald Trump really is.  She recounted the litany of disparaging comments Trump had made about people during the campaign.

When cornered again about being a different man since he said those lewd words about women.  Trump called them "just words–locker room talk" and deflected the talk to Bill Clinton's sexual abuse of women, and Hillary Clinton's representation of a client who raped a twelve-year-old girl, an accusation that rated mostly false and inaccurate.

Hillary stayed high.  But some people think she should have said:
"I am running for President. Not my husband."

Trump stayed low, but stood high, frequently standing behind Hillary in predator mode, attacking her verbally anytime he could.  And promising to put her in jail if he got elected.

When asked about not paying federal income tax, Trump readily admitted it, but blamed Hillary for allowing him to be able to do it.

In a question concerning his 3 a.m. derogatory tweets about a former beauty queen, and his own words about the discipline needed of a leader, Trump blew the question off and tried to deflect it to Benghazi.

To sum it up, by his very words, demeanor, and actions last night, Donald Trump, the last misogynist standing, showed America that he is not fit to be President.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

If I Were a Republican...

If I were a Republican, I'd most certainly vote for Donald Trump––anybody but Hillary!

I'd wake up in the morning and hope that WikiLeaks released secrets about Hillary while I was sleeping.  But I'd also hope that my candidate didn't twitter-bomb anybody else at three o'clock in the morning.

If I were a Republican, I'd hope that the Russians did hack Hillary's computer and that they would release those 30,000 missing emails.  Now that might seem un-American, but my philosophy––and I'm sticking to it–– is "Anybody but Hillary!"

If I were a Republican, I would want the investigative reporters to uncover the colluding that surely went on between the Clinton Charity Foundation and Hillary's actions as Secretary of State.  I just wish that somebody would find out something really bad about Hillary!  But I also wish that these very same reporters would stop finding problems with my candidate's charity foundation.... And I don't even want to think about the problems with his son's charity...

And I'd hope that one of Trump's ex-wives doesn't release any more pages of tax returns... And here I thought he was a great businessman....

If I were a Republican, I'd wish my candidate would stop picking on women....
....on fat people...
.......on Muslims................
.........on parents of fallen soldiers.............
............on Mexicans.................................
..............on everybody who is anybody.....
..................I just wish he'd stop being a bully.

I wish he would control himself.......

..I wish he could control himself......

...I wish I could trust him with running my country...

 ...I think I'd better vote for Hillary...

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Zika And Our Stagnant Congress

About Zika

It has been 204 days and counting since President Obama's request for emergency Zika funding.  And what has our stagnant Congress been doing about it?  Absolutely nothing but partisan in-fighting.

For Shame!

As of Sep 7th, the CDC reported 43 locally-acquired cases of the Zika virus (in Florida) and over 2900 travel-associated cases.

In an NBC story yesterday, Florida officials say they have diagnosed 70 people with the Zika Virus. And in a report earlier this month, the World Health Organization reported that the Zika Virus has spread to 70 countries.

And just what is our stagnant Congress doing about it?  Blaming each other for not passing the Zika Funding bill.  Republicans have attached "riders" to the Zika Funding bill, which itself is attached to a military spending bill.  Republicans want to stop admitting Syrian refugees.  They want to block funding again for Planned Parenthood.  And they want Confederate flags to fly at Veterans' cemeteries!

Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!

The World Health Organization, the Center for Disease Control,  and everyone and their mother are crying out for help.

    They are in desperate  need for
           a bridge over troubled water...

And babies are being born with catastrophic birth defects...

                 Swing Low, Sweet Chariot...

And what is our Congress still doing 204 days later?  Stagnating...

Those who represent the dignity of their country in the eyes of other nations  will be particularly sensible to every prospect of public danger, or of dishonorable stagnation in public affairs.
                                    James Madison
                                   The Federalist No. 58

We need a Do-Something Congress!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Questions Raised
The Health and Stamina
Our Presidential Candidates

NBC News

>ABC News

The Hill

"Smile! You're on Smartphone Camera!"  Yes.  Hillary Clinton has pneumonia.  Her doctor prescribed penicillin and recommended rest.  But Hillary pushed on and almost passed out leaving the 9/11 ceremony.  But she'll be okay in a week or two.

Dallas Morning News

Here's a few words about Hillary Clinton's stamina.  She traveled 956,733 miles to and from 112 countries as Secretary of State.  She was almost "The Million Mile Woman!"


How About Donald Trump's Health?

The Huffington Post

The Atlantic

Vanity Fair

As for Trump's stamina, unconfirmed rumors have it that his doctor wrote him a prescription while talking him down on the phone for five to fifty-five minutes:


"Take two Viagra and call me in the morning."

Monday, September 12, 2016

America And Its Moral Compass

My wife and I were watching the season finale of the TNT blockbuster series The Last Ship last night.  And in the last few minutes of the episode, the lead character in the show, Captain Tom Chandler, lamented, "America has lost its moral compass."

And my wife Linda said, "Ain't that the truth!"

She is correct.  To me, moral compass is that personal attribute that tells us what is right and what is wrong, and which guides our conduct in the right direction.

America is less than two months away from electing the next President of the United States of America.  And America has truly lost its moral compass.

Almost half of America is seriously considering electing a candidate who can only be described as being morally bankrupt. He is a bully who belittles war heroes, women, other politicians, and the handicapped.  Who said that blacks have nothing to lose if they vote for him.  Who wants to build a wall to keep Mexicans out.  Who will deport all illegal immigrants.  Who will forbid Muslims from entering the United States.  I wonder if he will dismantle the Statue of Liberty if he is elected President of the United States of America? Will it still be "The United States of America?"

Donald Trump is a Presidential candidate who brags about his business success, yet who has declared bankruptcy eleven times.  A Presidential candidate who has been involved in 4,056 lawsuits to date.  Who hired people to complete jobs, and then only paid them what he thought the jobs were worth–if he paid them at all.  A Presidential candidate who refuses to release his tax returns.  A Presidential candidate who calls his opponent's charity foundation corrupt, but whose own charity foundation is questionable and in the news.  A Presidential candidate who praises Putin and who knows more about ISIS than the generals do.  Is Putin his adviser?

Donald Trump is a Presidential candidate whose own campaign manager described him as unpresidential.  Yet this very same campaign manager wants to guide Donald Trump to the Presidency of the United States of America?

Almost half of America believes that Donald Trump will help make America great again?  America has truly lost her moral compass.

America needs to take a look at what the other candidate, Hillary Clinton, has done right!  It already knows what she has reportedly done wrong.  With a 67 percent untrustworthy rating, she must have done plenty wrong!  Yes.  Crooked Hillary Clinton is no saint.  But countless investigations have not proven that she is a sinner either.

America needs to compare what Hillary Clinton has done right for America to what Donald Trump has done right for America... What has Donald Trump actually done right for America?

And then America needs to compare what Hillary Clinton can do for America to what Donald Trump can do for America.

Only then can America regain its moral compass, look deep into its soul, and then vote for who will be right for America.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

How Citizens United
Will Help
Make America Great Again

Make America Great Again!

"Wait a minute!  That's Donald Trump's line," you say!

That's right.  But  Donald Trump has hired David Bossie,  President of Citizens United, to be Deputy Campaign Manager of his Presidential Campaign.  And Mr. Bossie wants to help "Make America Great Again" by finally destroying Hillary Clinton.

David Bossie has been going after Hillary Clinton ever since he was fired as chief investigator for Newt Gingrich's House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform in 1999.  Bossie lost his job for doctoring transcripts in an attempt to implicate Hillary Clinton in wrongdoing.

Surprisingly–or maybe–"not so surprisingly," David Bossie received the Ronald Reagan Award from the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in 1999.

In 2008, David Bossie and Citizens United sought to test the McCain-Feingold campaign finance law by creating and advertising Hillary:  The Movie, a right wing tour of the Clinton scandals.  But the Federal Election Commission restricted Citizens United from advertising the movie as per the McCain-Feingold Act.   Citizens United appealed, saying their right to free speech was threatened.

When the Citizens United case went to a lower court in 2008, the court sided with the FEC, saying that the film was effectively a 90-minute campaign ad "susceptible of no other interpretation than to inform the electorate that Senator Clinton is unfit for office, that the United States would be a dangerous place in a President Hillary Clinton world, and that viewers should vote against her."

But Bossie and Citzens United persevered, and in 2010, in the landmark case,  Citizens United v Federal Election Commission, the Supreme Court upended the McCain-Feingold Act.   In a 5-4 decision, the Court ruled that "freedom of speech prohibited the government from restricting independent political expenditures by a nonprofit corporation."

The turning point of the case, addressed in a Washington Post article was a theoretical argument: what the government would do if Hillary: The Movie was a book instead.  When the counsel for the government said that the government would bar Hillary: the Book as well, the Supreme Court ruled on the side of the First Amendment rights of the nonprofit corporation, Citizens United.  And, thanks to Citizens United, that's how corporations attained the "First Amendment" rights of citizens.

There are those, myself included, who believe that the mission statement of Citizens United is an anomaly:

Dedicated to restoring our government to citizens' control.

In actuality, with the utter lack of campaign finance restrictions, the mission statement of Citizens United is:

Dedicated to giving control of our government to corporations.

If Trump, Bossie, and the other Right-Wing elements have their way, destroy Hillary, and elect Trump, John Q. Citizen will not be the one who benefits from a Trump Dynasty.  It will be the corporations again.

If, however, America elects Hillary Clinton, Citizens United, the court case, will be revisited.  Campaign finance laws will be reenacted.  And our government, a government of the people, will be restored to citizens' control again.

That would truly help:  Make America Great Again!

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Crooked Hillary,
The Clinton Foundation,
The Most Corrupt Enterprise In Political History

The GOP nominee, Donald Trump, on Monday called for the foundation to be shut down altogether, describing the charity as "the most corrupt enterprise in political history."
                Washington Post, Aug 22, 2016

All the news organizations, and probably the Russians too, are poring over the Clinton emails looking for the smoking gun in the Clinton Foundation pay-to-play scandal.  They are looking for that one slip of the tongue that would prove that donors received political favors from Hillary Clinton while she was Secretary of State.

And if they find it, so what!  Donors gave 325 million dollars in charitable contributions to the Clinton Foundation in the fiscal year ending Dec 31, 2014.  And of that money, 88% of it went to implement the stated mission of the Clinton Foundation:
Works to improve global health & wellness, increase opportunity for women & girls, reduce childhood obesity, create economic opportunity & growth, and help communities address the effects of climate change.
I'm not making this up.  It is from the Charity Watch website.

If you're not familiar with Charity Watch, here are its mission statement and goals:

If  donors who contributed to the Clinton Foundation asked for help, I'm sure the Clintons did everything that was legally possible to help them.   But although thirty years of previous investigations have turned up nothing illegal, nevertheless, the investigations have clouded people's opinions of the Clintons.  They must be crooked! And the fact that the Clintons raised millions and millions of dollars to help the people of the world appears to have been lost in the pile of manure that Trump and others are trying to bury the Clintons in.

I am more concerned with the appearance of impropriety that Donald Trump's candidacy presents.  Here is a man who says he is "going to make America great again." Yet, he refuses to release his tax returns, but is reportedly 600 million dollars in debt.  Moreover, he has been involved in no less than 4,056 lawsuits in the last 30 years.  Exactly who is Trump going to make great again?  Would Trump Enterprises benefit if Trump were elected President? Already he is making money by renting his properties to his own campaign.

I am reminded of Former Vice President Cheney and Halliburton. And the billions of dollars its subsidiary, KBR, was awarded in no-bid contracts during the Iraq War.

Halliburton would certainly be in the running as the most corrupt enterprise in political history.
We don't need another Halliburton.

Give me, and give America Crooked Hillary!

Saturday, August 20, 2016


Donald Trump has changed campaign managers again.  And this time he is going BIG.  He has hired Stephen K. Bannon, executive chairman of Breitbart, to be his new campaign manager.

At Brietbart, there is BIG GOVERNMENT, BIG JOURNALISM, and BIG HOLLYWOOD.  And now, in the Trump Campaign,  BIG SMEAR is coming!

For those not familiar with Breitbart, its heavily edited "video evidence" brought down ACORN in 2009,  and smeared Shirley Sherrod in 2010.  And Breitbart is still working on destroying Planned Parenthood.

The former executive chairman of Breitbart, Stephen K. Bannon,  also happens to be the co-founder and executive chairman of the Government Accountability Institute, an investigative organization that is still looking into alleged political corruption involving the Clinton Foundation.

Smears work, sometimes even in presidential elections.  Smears worked against John Kerry in 2004, but not against Barack Obama in 2012.  Will BIG SMEAR work in the 2016 presidential election?

Let's hope not...

Monday, August 15, 2016

13 Benghazis, Prejudice and Logic

You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.
                                         Robert Heinlein

Surf the internet and you will find who knows how many news articles about 13 Benghazis that occurred on President George W. Bush's watch. But will you find mention of any of these 13 Benghazis occurring on Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's watch or on Secretary of State Colin Powell's watch?

I am not pointing the finger here.  Condoleezza Rice and Colin Powell have my highest respect.  The 13 Benghazis were not their fault.  And as Colin Powell himself said, Benghazi was not Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's fault either.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

All In?

NY Times Aug 8
Headline:  A Letter From G.O.P. National Security Officials Opposing Donald Trump:

Dozens of the nation’s most senior Republican national security officials, many of them former top aides or cabinet members for President George W. Bush, have signed a letter saying they will not vote for Mr. Trump, the Republican nominee.

Read more:

Politico Aug 11
Headline:  More than 70 Republicans have signed an open letter to Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus urging him to stop spending any money to help Donald Trump win in November and shift those contributions to Senate and House races.
We believe that Donald Trump’s divisiveness, recklessness, incompetence, and record-breaking unpopularity risk turning this election into a Democratic landslide, and only the immediate shift of all available RNC resources to vulnerable Senate and House races will prevent the GOP from drowning with a Trump-emblazoned anchor around its neck,” states a draft of the letter obtained by POLITICO. “This should not be a difficult decision, as Donald Trump’s chances of being elected president are evaporating by the day.
Read more:

CNN Aug 12,
Headline:  RNC Chair Priebus Rallies with Trump.

Read more:

Priebus just went "All In" with Trump... minus most senior Republican National Security Officials and 70 odd Republicans...

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

What Donald Trump Says That He Doesn't Know

... And by the way, if she gets to pick... if she gets to pick her judges... nothing you can do folks!  Although the Second Amendment People, maybe there is... I don't know...
                           Donald Trump, Aug 9, 2016

   Donald Trump says that there is nothing folks can do if Hillary gets to pick her judges.  But then he mentions the Second Amendment People–and that maybe the Second Amendment People can do something so Hillary doesn't get to pick her judges... But Donald Trump says he doesn't know...

What is it that the Second Amendment People can do that "folks" can't do to prevent Hillary from picking her judges?  Donald Trump says he doesn't know...

Let's hope and pray that someone with a gun doesn't read between the lines and think that Trump really said what he says that he doesn't know....

Sunday, August 7, 2016

About Cursory Remarks

We do not talk -- we bludgeon one another with facts and theories gleaned from cursory readings of newspapers, magazines and digests
  Henry Miller (1891-1980)

...and that was before the advent of social media!

Cursory.  Also cursorie, cursary. 1.  Running or passing  over a thing or subject, so as to take no note of details ; hasty, hurried, passing.   2.  Moving about, traveling.  3.  Adapted for running.  4.  Cursory lectures:  lectures of a less formal and exhaustive nature...

This blog, separated from my other blogs about books and book collecting, is about politics–and particularly about the upcoming presidential election.  I created the title of this blog from an essay by Hugh Henry Brackenridge that was published in Paul Leicester Ford's book, Essays on the Constitution of the United States Published During Its Discussion By the People 1787-1788, Brooklyn, N.Y.:  History Printing Club, 1892.

I will begin this blog with the first two paragraphs of Brackenridge's essay, "Cursory Remarks," from whence this title came.  Mr. Ford noted that the article first appeared in The Pittsburgh Gazette, but he wasn't able to find a copy of that paper.  So he reprinted it from The American Museum.

Cursory Remarks
Hugh Henry Brackenridge
Printed In
The American Museum
April, 1788

   It is not my intention to enter largely into a consideration of this plan of government, but to suggest some ideas in addition to, and of the same nature with, those already made, showing the imperfections and dangers of it.
    The first thing that strikes a diligent observer, is the want of a precaution with the regard to the sex of the president.  Is it provided that he shall be of the male gender?  The Salii, a tribe of the Burgundians, in the 11th century, excluded females from the sovereignty.  Without a similar exclusion, what shall we think, if, in progress of time, we should come to have an old woman at the head of our affairs?  But what security have we that he shall be a white man?  What would be the national disgrace if he should be elected from one of the southern states, and a vile negro should come to rule over us?  Treaties would then be formed with the tribes of the Congo and Loango, instead of the civilized nations of Europe.  But is there any security that he shall be a freeman?  Who knows but the electors at a future period, in days of corruption, may pick a man-servant, a convict perhaps, and give him the dominion?  Is any care taken that he shall be of perfect parts?  Shall we, in affairs of a civil nature, leave a door open to lame men, bastards, eunuchs, and the devil knows what?

Hugh Henry Brackenridge (1748-1816) was an early American scholar, lawyer, and author who was later appointed to the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania in 1799.  He went to school with the American statesman, James Madison, and the American poet, Philip Morin Freneau.  Although he was never ordained as a minister, he served as a chaplain in George Washington's army, preaching fiery patriotic sermons to the soldiers of the American Revolutionary War.

When he wrote his article, "Cursory Remarks," he was a member of the Pennsylvania state legislature but would be defeated in the next election because he supported Federalism (Western Pennsylvania did not support Federalism).  Brackenridge was in favor of Robert Morris's plan to establish a national bank, and was quoted at a dinner as saying:
The people are fools; if they would let Mr. Morris alone, he would make Pennsylvania a great people, but they will not suffer him to do it.

Brackenridge's literary masterpiece, Modern Chivalry, was published in two parts in 1793 and 1797, was revised in 1805, and was added to in 1815. Henry Adams called Modern Chivalry  "a more thoroughly American book than any written before 1833."  

In his 2009 book,  Empire of Liberty:  a History of the Early Republic, 1789-1815, Gordon S. Wood called the great moral of  Brackenridge's novel, "this evil of men seeking office for which they are not qualified (220)."

And so, dear readers of this blog, you have a choice in this upcoming presidential election between an old woman or the devil knows what? A man seeking office for which he is not qualified?

Stay tuned...