August 29, 2017

Eye Opener

     I suppose I have had my head buried in the sand for the past God only knows how many years. It took Trump being elected to the office of President for me to get face-smacked with the reality of what is all around me. Don’t get me wrong. I know bigotry has lined the lower ends of our culture since I was a kid. But that was relegated to the shadows, to the corners where most people don’t go. Or so I thought.

    It amazes me to see how wrong I was. Bigotry has been alive and well all along. I was oblivious for the most part. Having been born in Arkansas in the mid-1950’s, I saw more than my share of race hatred. As a child, I did not understand it. I remember an admonishment from my mother not to venture across the alley behind our house because "those Ni*****s will cut your throat." I was four or five at the time. I did not understand, but I trusted my mother to protect me from harm.

    At the age of eleven, we moved to Texas, and I witnessed the switch from blacks being the target of hate to Mexicans taking center stage. But this wasn’t from my parents, this was from my peers. I never understood the hate and what “those people” had done to deserve such dislike. I have always had friends that ran the spectrum of skin color or surnames. Why not? I never experienced any issues from any group in particular.

     I knew more white people that I would avoid than people of color. To me, these whites were dangerous, drugies, downers, or “trailer trash.” In the military, I was surprised that we Airmen were ordered into “race relations” classes. I went, (had no choice really) and most of the stuff they tried to teach drew a reaction of “well duh” from me. Again, I never understood the issue.

      Now that we have our racist president in office and the cancer of hate is oozing from the cracks of society where it lay out of my sight, I see a whole counter culture of hate living in my midst. The oddest part for me is these people are made up of self-proclaimed Christians who attend churches that claim that the God they worship is all about love. Weird --- hypocrisy in the flesh.

      Love, acceptance, and worship have nothing to do with the color of one’s skin, their national origin or their sex or their sexual orientation, or their religious beliefs. It might behoove these haters to realize their prophet Jesus was not white, nor was he a Christian, nor had he set out to create a new religion.

     I thought this hate thing had begun to die off. After Obama was elected to President, it seemed like we had reached a point of no return. I did not take into consideration that the hate that seethed beneath the surface would react so strongly. And now it raises it's evil head. Even though Trump claims he is Republican, even though he claims to be touting the Republican agenda, when one looks, that isn’t what we see. He seems to be on a one man crusade to erase every act President Obama created.  As if Obama enacted them as a personal attack on Trump. And now Trump is overturning things in the name of making America Great Again,. Looks like instead it is Trump's bigotry run amok. If you doubt my statement, his Eclipse Meme should dispel any questions.

    Maybe that’s what this country wants: a return to the segregation of races, nationalities, religions. (The polls showing Trump with a 34% approval rating strongly argue against this.) But even the most cursory study of history will point out that we whites are not the original holders of this land. That would be the Native Americans: the Cherokee, Apache, Sioux, Blackfoot, Cheyenne, Mohawks, and hundreds of more tribes. We whites conquered them. We took their lands. We subjected them to imprisonment, genocide, and even today dishonor them by treating them as something less than equal.

     I do not know what would make America Great Again, though there is no way I can accept that hatred is the path to get there. Maybe I am biased. No, in this instance I am firmly against any who would push hate, discrimination, segregation, or disenfranchisement on others as a national policy.

     A President must represent all the people. If he cannot, he should step down. If he will not, he should be removed and sooner than later.

Another Fine Mess

August 16, 2017:
 
Well, here we are at a grand moment in history. Our President has shown his true colors once again, and this time people are outraged to discover he is a racist. Folks, he clearly showed that in the run up to the election. Your anger is reasonable, what took you so long to find a moral deficiency in Trump? He has shown this lack from the beginning. Do we really need more scandals or confrontations to inform you that he is narcissistic, that he is a womanizer, and that he is unfit to be in the oval office?

Even the Republican leadership is accepting the sad state of affairs that they have embraced. But folks this sick man IS PRESIDENT. That should frighten the bejeezers out of you. Why? Look at his actions yesterday with his little press conference. We saw a man who should be the epitome of calm, assured, reasoned, and thoughtful leadership, become unhinged as he slipped from scripted message into a stream of consciousness and revealed the ugliness hiding beneath the surface.

While that situation by itself is concerning, think how it bodes for our country in international politics. Saying the right thing at the right time is important. Stepping up to an “enemy,” toe to toe in the heated situation of an international threat to this country is a required Presidential duty. If our President cannot restrain his personal emotions and opinions, (as he failed to do in the press conference yesterday on slightly less severe concerns) we could find ourselves in a rapidly escalating situation that finds us in a war with one of the other superpowers. A situation that might have been defused through discussion instead goes the other way because of Trump’s lack of personal emotional control.    

The job of President of the United States of America is not a position for a neophyte to the political world of backstabbing and negotiation. The government is not a business where money makes the world go around. President of the United States a position of leadership where the one must look at the whole of our country and make decisions that are best for the majority, EVEN WHEN THAT GOES AGAINST WHAT ONE MIGHT WANT TO SEE. Acceptance of hate groups, either directly or implicitly, runs counter to everything our country stands for.

As for the media’s belief that Trump is playing to his political base, that is true. Unfortunately, his base is made up of selfish, racist, and bigoted people. That is dangerous to this country. We already see the destructive ripples. The man who drove his car into protesters is an example. The push by the so called Alt-Right is another. Nine more “Alt-Right” rallies this coming weekend is still another.

This group, the “Alt-Right” and all the groups it would pull beneath it, the skinheads, the neo-nazis, and the KKK should be listed up there with other outlawed groups. Yet, Trump defended them yesterday. These groups, these people do not represent the main steam in America. To listen to Trump, you might think good people are involved with them. Hate, extremism, and bigotry are not and never have been the hallmarks of “fine people.” That our president seems to think otherwise is sad. Not only sad, but it is also dangerous to the unity of our country.

Mr. Trump, it is time to make America Great again, step down. Resign. Do not force Congress to go through the painful and destructive process to remove you from office. You are not suited to be the leader of this great nation. Even you must recognize this by now.

July 12, 2017
Dealing with the Devil


        How many stories have we heard concerning the outcome of deals with the devil? Rarely if ever does the end result of such an agreement come to the betterment of any but the devil. And now, Trump Jr.  has offered up proof that Kushner was making such deals. The election of Trump was the reward for the deal, what did he trade to achieve it?

        Granted, Putin hates Clinton. That is one reward for the Russians. But what else? Do we not see Trump buddying up with Putin even in light of the aggression his regime has shown to his former block of Soviet States? It seems odd in light of Congress pushing through more sanctions against Russia.

        What has the election of 2016 brought the United States? Where does it place us? Already Trump pulls us from the forefront of world leadership. His withdrawal from the Paris Accord is a big piece of this. His arrogant attack on our NATO Allies not paying their fair share is another. His cozying up to dictators in other parts of the world should be a red flag for everyone – worldwide, but especially so in the Republican Party.

        I admit I am at a loss how anyone could have voted for this man. Yet I am aware my own daughter did so. Within the family, we tend to stay away from politics. Such discussions become too emotional. And family is more important than politics regardless of how things turn out. As I listen to her talk about why I understand her fear of Hillary Clinton and what she might have done as President. I only wish there had been another choice. I could not under any circumstance vote for Trump. Yet, I did not like voting for Clinton. Neither represented real leadership for the country.

        In the past twenty years, we as a country have become so divided with extremists on either side of the conservative – progressive line that I hear stories of people preparing for a civil war. This country is in dire need of someone who can walk the tightrope of compromise and bring the extremists to the table to discuss their differences and find a middle ground that all can live with. This “My way or the highway” attitude the Republican Party has taken on is not serving the country in any positive way. The idea that Mitch McConnell would use discussing things with Democrats as a weapon against his own party shows how far things have gotten out of control.

      Today the United States faces a crisis. Jared Kushner's releasing of his emails with the Russian lawyer removed any doubt about collusion with the Soviets and the Trump campaign. The question becomes what is to be done about it.
       
      Will the Republican controlled Congress allow the status quo to remain? Will they support Mr. Trump because he seems to be a Republican? Even they must see turning our back on longtime allies makes us weaker. Making friends with despots and tyrants, and denying the provable contention that we as people are causing the world to heat up are the path Trump wants us to follow. Is this the direction of the Republican Party? The time has come for the Republican Congress to decide the direction they want to follow. They must make the next step to show the American People what they stand for.
       
      Will they lead? Or will they assist in taking the United States down a rabbit hole of Trump’s Wonderland? 
       
       

Y
June 03 2017
 
 
This is the symbol for a resistor in electronics. I think the simplicity of the design is perfect for use in the world of politics. This has become my symbol to represent my resistance to our current President. I place it in the window of my car for the world to see.

Anyone who has read my blog knows, I am not a fan of our current President. His actions this past week to pull the United States from the Paris Accord on Global Warming is just another in a long, long list of reasons this man should be removed from office – quickly. Not only does it set the United States back in terms of innovation, it firmly states that we are no longer interested in being a world leader. 

As we move forward in time, our President seems dead set on moving us backward in the world arena. The very idea of favoring coal over renewable energy resources confirms how out of touch with reality this man is. His 38% following does not come close to representing the mainstream of these United States, but, by hook or crook, the man did get himself elected to the Oval Office.

While the slow wheels of law enforcement move in the direction of removing him, he continues to destroy who we are as a people. He knows or should realize that his time in office is limited. Notwithstanding his claims about “fake news” or “witch hunts,” the sad fact is there is ample evidence (as agreed to by both sides of the political spectrum) that there may have been actions by his staff that spell disaster for him in the end. I suspect he will renew his effort to speed things along with his plans to destroy as many of the accomplishments of the prior administrations as he can; be damned any negative consequences. How many in Congress will go along with him at the risk of their political future?

I suppose in Trump’s mind he is “making America great again.” In his eyes, moving us into the position of isolation gives us strength. The unfortunate truth is: I believe the man actually believes his alternative facts, being unfairly mistreated by the press, the number of people at his inauguration was as big as that of Obama, fossil fuels are the future of America and America loves him.

The disaster that is President Donald John Trump should be a lesson to all in the political arena. You may not like the opposition party, you may vehemently disagree with their philosophy, but there are much worse alternatives to political compromise. We have one of those now, a man in office who has shown himself as a bigot, a sexist, an isolationist and quite possibly a criminal. He can bring great harm to our country, and to the world itself. That he thumbs his nose at our allies, and buddies up with our enemies should be a red flag for everyone.

I sincerely hope those people who voted for Trump as the “lesser of two evils” keep their eyes on the man and what their vote has wrought for this country and the world. For those who cheer him, what can I say? I feel sad that you have been misled, misinformed and lied to. I pray that somehow, someday, you find and recognize unfiltered untainted truth. Or better yet, you will find compassion for your fellow humans and spread that in all directions.

The "I" Word --- It's Time                               05-14-2017

 
     Over the past two weeks, I have avoided the temptation to jump to the computer to rant about our new President. There has been plenty to rant about: The arrest of the Reporter in West Virginia, who yelled questions at the Health and Human Services director, Trump’s invitations to murderous dictators to the White House (thereby lending them legitimacy), the new health care bill that so many representatives signed without even reading what was written, (they had no time, they didn’t even see the document until the morning of the vote)… There is more, but you can read the news and see.

     I think one of the most poignant things I saw over this time was a comment Mr. Trump made to Sen. Richard Blumenthal, referring to the Senator’s statement that Comney’s firing would lead to Trump’s Impeachment. One piece I found interesting is that Mr. Trump accuses the Senator of being Judge and Jury, convicting the President before any court case. This is interesting to me because it points to Trump’s inner thoughts that he has concerns about being tried for his actions.

     Trump goes on to bring up a dark mark against Senator Blumenthal concerning his claim to be a veteran of Vietnam fighting. A claim that was untrue. Here again, we see an interesting contrast. True, the Senator lied about his role in Vietnam. When caught, the Senator confessed, apologized and moved on. Mr. Trump is incapable of admitting errors of any kind even when irrefutable proof is laid at his feet. Instead, he claims the evidence is fake or tries to shift blame elsewhere. As if on his say so alone, something is true or fake.

     Granted, Mr. Trump is inexperienced in the role of a politician. But I think he may fail to realize that being in the ultimate job, being the leader of the United States is to accept the ultimate responsibility that goes with the role.

     Being the candidate for President, he chose his staff. That makes him responsible for their actions, even if he was unaware of what they were doing. If they were involved in illegal negotiations with Russia, that is Trump’s responsibility. No amount of denial, refusal to accept or deflection after the fact can remove that responsibility. Being President increases that responsibility tenfold, yet where has Trump even once accepted this? Anything goes wrong, he points fingers outward.

     The fact that Mr. Trump fired Comey, the head of the FBI and lead investigator in the search for the connections Trump’s staff had with Russia, has turned up the heat on Trump. Maybe Comey needed firing, the timing and Trump’s admission that he was thinking about the Russian investigation when he chose to fire Mr. Comey says a lot. The fact that Mr. Trump then opted to flail vague threats about Mr. Comey keeping quiet because there may be recordings of their conversations is telling as well. Why would Trump think it necessary to demand Comey’s silence? What does Comey know that Trump fears? Or what is it Trump thinks Comey may know?

     I would say to Mr. Trump, “If you have something on tape that will show something illicit about Mr. Comey, it would behoove you to make it public. What better way to discredit the former head of the FBI?” I would say too, “Remember what happened to Nixon, the Supreme Court ordered him to turn over the tapes from his office. Are you ready to have your private conversations made public? And yes, Mr. Trump, the Supreme Court has that power.”

     It is time that our Congress looks deeply at the facts. It is past time to start a move toward impeachment. The Republicans in Congress are supporting a grossly unpopular President, is that because he names himself Republican? The Republicans hold all the power reins right now. How long will they allow this incompetent, megalomaniac bully boy to lead us down the dark path of ruin before they wise up and act?    

                                                                     Alterations to this entry made on 05-15-2017 to correct the spelling of FBI director Comey's name.

The Danger Mr. Trump Represents                 05-01-2017

 
 
     Has our democracy come down with a terminal illness? Trumpitis? What else can one say when our President is working diligently to dismantle the system that has made America great for the past 241 years? His actions (and those of his cronies) have already taken a toll on the free expression of scientific information. He has even caused the removal of scientific data from the EPA’s website. And why is he delving into ways to take away the freedoms of the press, to dismantle our appellate court system, and to change the laws that govern how Congress works. 

     What bugs me most are the people who voted Trump into office (and for whatever reasons still support him) and are all for giving him as much power as he desires. Can they not see the danger inherent in this? Our country was born as a means to escape the tyranny of English Rule. Now, a few people in this country are ready and willing to give Trump the power to become a dictator. Never mind that there appears to be severe Russian influence that brought about his election, or that his own team held talks with the Russians through the election process. Michael Flynn may be the first to face charges in connection with improper actions concerning the Russians, will he be the last? And let us not forget that Trump is still trying to deflect the investigations into that mess; saying most recently that it might have been the Chinese who hacked the Democratic Party.  

     His quote from the song about the lady who took in the snake is apropos. Our country voted a snake in office. That is what Trump reminded us of with that quote. Why would we be surprised he is acting like a snake now that he is in power? I am glad to see that some people of this country are not afraid to stand up and speak out. Mayday marches, women’s marches, marches for science, all these should send a strong message to Mr. Trump. Instead, he plods on with an agenda the rest of the world can only guess at. Ignoring what he does not wish to see.

     His “comments about the Civil War,” are quite strange. He doesn’t know why it happened in the first place? Mr. Trump, did you receive your education from a paper mill? He says he believes someone could have made a deal to stop it. Maybe Andrew Jackson could have. What kind of deal do you think appropriate? Let some states keep slavery intact? Lincoln, the first Republican President, did what desperately needed to be done. He freed people from legalized forced servitude. That is why he is a celebrated President. Mr. Trump could learn a lot from him.

     Mr. Trump, the War Between the States is a sad blot on our history. Brother fought brother to win freedom for those from whom it was denied. But that time is long gone, you should pay attention to the country around you today. Do you see the marches by citizens who hold opinions differing from yours? Do you understand your actions threaten tens of thousands of people who will lose their jobs if you get your way? Are you going to offer those people some kind of “deal” in exchange for jerking their jobs out from beneath them? Or do you boot them out on the street with nothing but 26 weeks of diminished income and forget about them? Do you think they will forgive you for that? I presume you believe that is beneath you to care. Do you realize your agenda turns our country away from protections for the citizens?

     It might behoove Mr. Trump to remember that even though elected to the highest office in the land, impeachment can turn the tables. The deeper you sink in the quicksand of the Russian connections, the more likely that will be your destiny. Your denials and deflections do nothing to cleanse you. And lest you forget, you have already proven yourself a liar, so your words are meaningless.   

       I agree with Ruth Ben-Ghiat, our country is facing its biggest threat in 241 years, and it comes from the top, from the Oval Office. Her article is: Trump at his most dangerous
 

March for Science
04-22-2017

          As a child of the sixties, I am familiar with protests, marches and peaceful dissension. As frequent as they occurred, I never joined any of the marches or ‘sit-ins,’ though I sympathized with the participants.
           
          Yesterday, for the first time in my life I joined a protest march. I suppose it wasn’t so much a protest as it was a show of support for the scientific community.  I found myself surprised by the feeling of togetherness that went along with being part of a crowd of like-minded people. I milled through the crowd and spoke with several people, most total strangers. We came from all walks of life. Many scientists joined the walk, as well as businessmen, housewives, retirees, children, teens, even a few babies (in covered strollers).
          The day in Newport Oregon was a typical coastal Oregonian spring day with heavy wind and rain during the walk. For six-hundred-seventy-eight people, the weather didn’t matter. I heard  a few grumbles about it, but everyone felt that much more pride aboutt the turnout. We walked, some chanted, I could barely hear them over the sound of wind and rain pelting down on me. I certainly could not understand the words. Yet the feeling was ‘we care about science and will not stay silent in the face of a President who is a denier.’
          After I got home, I saw that Trump made a statement about the sciences, “Rigorous science is critical to my administration's efforts to achieve the twin goals of economic growth and environmental protection.” If this were true, he would not be placing the other deniers in positions of power within organizations who oversee our environment, our energy development and our global partnerships.


          I learned long ago to ignore people’s words when their actions told a different story. Actions speak the truth of their inner values and beliefs. Mr. Trump has time and again proven himself to be loose with the truth. His statement of support does not ring true in any meaning of the word.
          Trump calls himself a businessman. Many of his businesses ended up in bankruptcy. That tells us plenty about his ability as a business leader. That he managed to profit personally from those bankruptcies makes him more of a pirate than a businessman in my eyes. His actions as President give us a strong indication of how things fail for him on the business front. Take his desire to defund Sea Grant. There is no explanation for this cut.

          The government’s 70 million dollar investment into Sea Grant yields an 854% rate of return. ( Here is a piece of that return broken down. ) Sea Grant is in partnership with many of our schools to help educate the educators on science, provide needed classroom materials, and provide field trips for students to laboratories where they can interact with scientists. Sea Grant collaborates with businesses – fisheries, oyster farmers and others to help them keep the food coming in.

          The Hatfield Marine Science Center, via Sea Grant, brings in 10,000 students a year for hands-on experiences in marine science, geology, engineering, and oceanography. They sponsor ‘home school’ days twice a year to bring in students who are outside our mainstream education system.   Sea Grant represents 30,000 jobs across this country. They are in 33 states and serve as a scientific outreach to the people of the Untied States. Loss of Sea Grant will diminish our country in many ways.

          Trump is quick to claim responsibility for job creation in this country. (Even when the decisions to add employees occured during the previous administration.) Will he be so quick to accept responsibility for the rise in unemployment due to his actions? Not likely. I suspect he will try to find a way to blame it on someone else. This does seem to be his modus operandi.

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More Connections to Russia

            Well, it looks like our President has begun to run out of steam. Oh, he still floods the air with smoke, doing his damnedest to get people to look away from his team’s (and his own) connections to Russia and their interference in the 2016 election. I am confident that it takes a lot of creative energy to keep pumping the fog into the air. But then again, the bloodhounds already have the scent. Every day or two, something pops up supporting the untrustworthiness of our President and his cronies. This weekend a story came out about a clandestine meeting in The Seychelles between a Trump representative and someone closely connected to Putin. A meeting Trump’s mouthpiece, Sean Spicer denies ever happened.

            Funny, Erik Prince, the founder of Blackwater, the paramilitary group that used to work in the Middle East, (they still do under a different name) and an official of the UAE have both come out and confirmed they set up a meeting and that talks actually took place. Supposedly this was to set up a back channel for communications between the Trump Administration and Putin.

            After a complete denial of any meeting, Spicer goes on to comment: “Why is the so-called under-resourced intelligence community messing around with surveillance of American citizens when they should be hunting terrorists?” This sounds like the speeder who complains to the cop about why the cop should be chasing “real criminals” not sitting on the side of the road with a radar gun. In both cases, the guilty stand there with their pants around their knees trying to deflect attention from their actions. Sometimes they even say, “This isn’t what it looks like.”

            Mr. Spicer, the reason the intelligence community is “messing around … with American citizens” is that they are doing their job. They work to protect American interests. Sometimes American citizens who have sold out or made deals with our enemies threaten those interests. These people might already be or may become more dangerous to the United States than a terrorist or two. This is especially true when those citizens have close relationships with the man who is President.  

            The threat a compromised President represents is far greater than terrorism. A compromised President could sell the freedom of every American to our enemies. He could order our military to stand down in the face of enemy action. He could obliterate the trustworthiness of our country and turn our friends into enemies. He could start a war we could not hope to win. In other words, he could destroy the balance of world order, such as it is.

            It will be interesting to see when the dust settles, how many Trump Associates will look through the bars of a posh prison cell rather than from a luxury hotel. (It’s probably too much to hope for them to end up in Leavenworth or Gitmo. Like or not in the United States money does buy privileges. I refer to the so-called white collar prisons, not bribery.) I hope his associates don’t count on Mr. Trump to save them. More than likely he will cut them loose to stand or fall on their own. Remember Michael Flynn, the man who is begging for immunity before he testifies in front of Congress? Trump is in his own profoundly deep hole and the wolves are closing in.

            Trump's popularity rating has dropped again. It now sits at 35%. How low can he go? A lot of those who voted for him are taking the attitude of simply looking away. But they need reminding at every turn: this is what you brought upon our country. This is who you chose to run our nation. Your vote counts. Your choices count. Now that you see the error do not think you can slough off responsibility. It is time to turn your voice towards removing the problem. The time has come for us to unite and say, ---  Mr. Trump, You’re Fired.
  

The Honeymoon is Over                                      March 28, 2017



            Well, Mr. President, I would say that the sound defeat of your desire to destroy the Affordable Care Act set in place by your predecessor has marked the end of your enjoyment period. You have received notice that not everything is going to go your way. Not only that, people in the Republican Party, who understand the reality of politics, are not willing to risk re-election by supporting something you demand simply because you spit out threats, lies, and innuendos. If it is not to the benefit of their constituents, supporting you costs them future votes. 

            It looks as if the ban on your desire to block Muslims from entry to the United States is also in great jeopardy, all because of judges who are beyond your ability to remove. 

            By the way, have you noticed the uptick in hate crimes? That is an accomplishment we can safely lay at your feet. Your campaigning methods, your vitriol about the evils of Muslims and illegal immigrants, gave these bigots hope and empowered them to act. Guess what, these hate crimes are not by foreign terrorists or illegal aliens but by ‘blue blood’ racist Americans. Hmm, does that give you pause Mr. Trump? It certainly should.

           Now you are demanding a billion dollars to build a sixty-two-mile wall between the US and Mexico. Oh, my God, Mr. Trump haven’t you learned anything from history? The wall in Berlin was to stop the flow of people from the communist sector into the west. It became a symbol of hate, tyranny and forced servitude of people on one communist side. How is your wall any different? It is a symbol of your hate of the people south of our border. Are you going to suggest we man it with armed soldiers who will shoot to kill anyone trying to cross? This symbol of hate is identical to your unreasoned ban on Muslims entering our country. You would force people to stay on the other side of the border even though that means their death by starvation or at the hands of unfriendly governments, or drug lords who ran them off in the first place. (Not your problem. Not America’s problem. Is that correct?)

            An interesting poem ends with the following lines:


“Give me your tired, your poor,
Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free,
The wretched refuse of your teeming shore.
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me,
I lift my lamp beside the golden door!”



            This is written in bronze at the base of the Statue of Liberty. Maybe you should enact legislation to return France’s gift because you and your idealism run counter to what that century old symbol of the United States stands for.
We were the light of the world. We were the hope of people everywhere. What are we now Mr. President? Are we a bigoted bunch of individuals jealously grasping at the straws of the false gods of wealth? Maybe that describes you and your cronies. It does not describe me or the vast majority of Americans.  

            You have no humanity, sir. You have no compassion. You are a cowardly narcissist with an egomaniacal belief system dangerous to the world in general and to the United States in particular. Sending people back to Mexico (or wherever), some who have no concept of what waits for them there to keep them from taking American jobs proves my point. Granted they take jobs in America, (they also pay taxes) and yes, Americans could take those jobs if they wanted them. Mr; President, it is time you realized the people in this country do not want menial minimum wage jobs that those illegals are happy to have. They want jobs that provide a living wage.

            With all your dubious claims about creating jobs in America, your path will put more people out on the street. That is the sickening reality of your plans. Cutting jobs in Government, hmm, okay you are cutting the fat, right? (Looks more like retaliation to me.) Are you providing any assistance for those you cut to assist them in finding other work? Or do you only send them a text that says, YOU’RE FIRED? Their future welfare isn’t your problem either, right?

            Living here and now is not exactly the best place and time of our country’s history. Right now we are at the crux of the biggest threat from within the United States has faced since the civil war. You and your cronies are on a collision course that will bring more violence between pro and anti-Trump protestors. Your inexperience with foreign affairs threatens to bring more violence from outside as these other governments realize you have no idea what you are doing. I read just this morning that Putin is moving troops into Afghanistan and into Libya. They are already moving to test your resolve.

            Governments are not and have never been ‘for profit’ enterprises. They were never meant to be. Governments are to keep the peace, make decisions for our countries future and take care of its citizens not make profits. Your so-called business savvy (how many businesses have you bankrupted?) is not the prescription to ‘fix America.’ From what you have shown us so far, it is far more likely to rip this country apart. Your idea that you can bully your way through whatever you desire, and shove it down our throats is unrealistic. The government was formed on the idea of cooperation.
I hope you continue to play your illogical ill-advised games with the truth. The people of the United States are not happy. Your ratings are already down to 37 percent. That is the lowest of any seated president in history at this stage of their tenure. I know, you will probably claim those are “phony numbers.” That and ‘alternative facts’ have become your answer to anything that doesn’t present the picture you want us to see.
 
         Thank god for the press that you hate so much. They do provide some transparency into the inner workings of government, where you would build a wall of falsehoods. (Maybe that worked for you in the business world, I am glad to see it isn’t working for you in Government.) I cannot accept that you would believe everything that slips past your lips. Is this lack of honesty lip service for the three point seven in ten people who still blindly follow you? Is it keeping up the masquerade as someone who knows what to do?  
          
           Mr. Trump the other 63 percent don’t like what they see in you. Yes, you managed to win the election. You are President… for now, that can change. You might manage to hold on to the job for the four years of your term, though I have doubts that will happen. But you cannot possibly hope to piss everybody off and still get cooperation. Life in the real world does not work that way. Your skewed view of reality is putting us all in harm’s way. It is making you - and because you are President - this country, a laughing stock in the world. Maybe this was your plan?

           Keep pushing Mr. Trump. Keep right on bullying. You are the best reason in the past century to swing that pendulum of favor in the opposite direction. The more Republicans you can convince to follow you, the more who will fall when the 2018 elections roll around. The people’s confidence in their elected officials is redeemed in the tender of votes cast in elections. I pray thee keep on pushing. It is high time the people rise up and sweep the do nothings and the extremists in Washington from their cushy seats and replace them with people who will govern.
           
           Or better yet, admit you were wrong, admit you cannot ‘fix America’ and step down, walk away. You are out of your league here Mr. Trump. Surely, you see that now. Let this country get back to the business of being the hope of the world. Let the melting pot that is America find its greatness again in the diversity of ideas and of people.  

Puppet on a String                                              03-23-2017

 
            The news is out; our new President’s staff appears to have colluded with Russia during the election. The speculation and that is all we have at the moment, Comey’s statements that there is an investigation verifies Trump’s staff may have coordinated with Russia on the release of Democratic National Committee emails, and those of Hillary Clinton. There is growing proof that the “fake news” Mr. Trump spouted so often in his campaign came from Russia too.

            Follow link for the story:


            Okay, we have a hostile nation manipulating our internal political process. One Trump official (Michael Flynn) has already resigned for his connections to the Soviet Union and for lying to Congress. Other close ties to Trump's campaign, Paul Manafort, Roger Stone and Carter Page, are under investigation for their connections to Russia as well. Tie this to Trump’s call for Russia to Hack the Democratic National Committee (DNC), the fact the DNC was hacked and their emails released to the public. Remember too there were meetings by Trump campaign officials with the Soviet Ambassador during the Republican Convention. Then we have Trump screaming about his offices being wiretapped when Congress was asking some uncomfortable questions about Jeff Sessions, another Trump appointee.
 
           Mr. Turmp’s credibility is gone. He looks foolish on the international scene, and our country is suffering as a result. No matter your opinion about illegals in this country, the plan to build a wall between the US and Mexico is a path to bankrupting our economy at the expense of the Coast Guard, educational programs, science in general, and anything to do with global warming in particular. What his obsession with a border wall has done to relations with Mexico, one of our strongest trading partners is nothing less than criminal. Did you know that if you go to Mexico on vacation now, you have to convert your dollars into Pesos? It is illegal for businesses there to accept American Dollars. Mexico is not our enemy, but Trump’s obsessions could make them one.   

            What is the benefit of antagonizing Mexico? Force them into better control of their citizens? Cut down on jobs moving across the border? Maybe it is something very different. Maybe alienating Mexico is a way to destabilize the West. It sounds suspiciously like something Russia might want. If the US and Mexico are snapping at each other, they are less likely to pull together in a crisis.

            Then there is the wild accusation that Obama ordered the British Secret Service to wiretap his offices. This too would serve to isolate the US and destabilize our western alliances. Trump has been regularly complaining, while on the campaign and now as President that our NATO Partners are not paying enough for the protections they receive from the US. More antagonizing of our allies – or more attempts to destabilize our relationships?

            Who would gain most by destabilizing the west? Vladimir Putin is number one on my list. He has long disliked and distrusted NATO. The organization is and has been a thorn in his side. He states publically that NATO is a threat to Russian security. Having a weakened US puts him in the position of doing whatever he wants, unchecked. If there is a President in office, who is willing to look the other way when he decides to take some action against another nation …

           Mr. Trump, are you a puppet for Putin?

Deflections
           
     How sad to see our new President wallowing in the mire of embarrassment. Many people are more than willing to allow a few mistakes; “the man is not a politician, that’s why I voted for him,” or “he does not understand the backstabbing world of politics; he is going to make mistakes.” Yet, this latest step of accusing the British Foreign Service of spying for the Obama Administration rises to the stratosphere of the unbelievable. Unfortunately for Mr. Trump (and the United States), his actions are making him (and us) the laughing stock of the world.
  
      Mr. Trump feels pressured because he believes the “liberal press,” is “out to get him.” So to counter this, he excludes CNN and New York Times from a Press Conference. A meaningless gesture, but at the same time, from Trump’s point of view, understandable: one does not invite their worst enemy to a “Yay me!” party. But his most recent false claims, that the Obama Administration wiretapped Trump Towers during the election, and now that Obama ordered the British Government do the wiretapping, can be summed up as a way to get the spotlight off the connections with Russia his own team has.
   
      Mr. Trump’s credibility was already in question from his use of unverifiable statements and “alternative facts.” Now, it seems that there is no bottom rung for how low he will go. Even the tabloids are enjoying some of his comments: “I inherited a mess from the Obama Administration,” was a recent headline. I suppose this is a matter of opinion, but available facts seem to strongly argue against this belief.

      Watching Trump’s team squirm to cover their chief executive iinteresting. They appear to believe redefining words will change the focus or soften the impact of Trump’s falsehoods. Did you notice the claim, “I am not in the job of having evidence,” popped up when Kellyanne Conway was asked to back up a statement by Trump? This is the single most credible statement coming out of the administration so far. Evidence is not something the Trump administration believes is necessary for shouting accusations, as demonstrated with Trump’s statement that all Muslims hate us and illegal Mexican immigrants are rapists and murderers. These outrageous claims may be his beliefs but – Mr. Trump’s theories do not define everyone else’s truth! Far more likely these false claims are a device for deflection.
    
       Mr. Trump is building bonfires (his accusations) to keep the public eye away from the places he does not want us to look. Remember what was going on at the time he made his outrageous claim against Obama two weeks ago? Congress and the intelligence community were pressing about the administration’s connections with Russia. Mr. Flynn had just resigned over such links at Trump’s request. The scrutiny about Jeff Sessions lying to Congress and his connections with the Russian Ambassador was intensifying. So, Trump made the play of an outrageous accusation, one guaranteed to grab every headline. It is tantamount to saying, “Hey look over there, so and so did such and such,” all the while holding a stolen pie behind his back. 

       Mr. Trump's own words are coming back to bite him on the backside. Questions concerning how to block Muslims from entering the U.S. have already led to a couple of rulings against his proposed immigration ban, and Trump calls it “judicial overreach.” No, Mr. President, your statements prove your intent and as every high school student knows, the Constitution prohibits discrimination based on religion – there are no exceptions, not even for the President.

        Leadership comes from engendering an atmosphere of cooperation and of negotiability. Trump can be forgiven for not understanding that. His social standing gave him a twisted version of how relationships work. In business, people bow to the powerful and give in, even when they disagree, because they need the profits and do not have the financial means to fight. In politics, as in relationships among equals, bad mouthing, bullying, temper tantrums, and lying will not persuade people to want to work with him. Quite the contrary, it will make them stiffen their backs and stand firmer against him. It will give people, even his supporters, valid reason to work to stop his plans. This is particularly the case in the political arena where association with a bad idea can mean a massive loss of votes, the currency of Washington D.C.

         Maybe the President is learning, albeit the hard way people in this country do not love him the way he craves. That may not mean anything to him, but poor public opinion has brought down stronger men. Hopefully, he has already learned daily rants do not help. The battle over his budget is coming up. It will be interesting to see how many Republicans are still willing to put their future electability on the line for him. Many seem to recognize the pariah Trump is becoming. I would remind the Republican Party, Trump won because of Electoral College votes, he did not win the popular vote. Unless of course, you believe another of his alternative facts; Hillary Clinton bussed millions of Mexicans in to vote illegally against him.

More Irony                                                               03-08-2017

 
 

 
           In the latest leak of information concerning the upcoming Trump Budget, we see he intends to cut 1.3 Billion dollars from the Coast Guard. This is especially telling when one considers that the Coast Guard is the number one defense of America from drugs and from illegal immigration, not to mention from foreign invaders.  One of the proposed cuts is to deactivate the Maritime Security Response Team, a group responsible for anti-terrorism in our home ports – exactly how is this supposed to make our country more secure?
 
           Consider this, if Trump does build his wall, most of these would-be immigrants will find different ways into the U.S. the next easiest way into the U.S. is via the ocean. Cutting the Coast Guard budget will mean fewer people to stop the flow. The flow of illegal immigrants will find the path of least resistance. Rest assured, the immigrants will continue to enter the U.S. with or without the wall and regardless of laws because the risk of being caught and deported is acceptable when compared to slow starvation or predation by drug gangs and/or dictators.     
 
           Then we must look at the flow of drugs into the U.S. The Coast Guard stopped 201 metric tons of cocaine and thirty tons of marijuana from landing on our shores last year. That is a lot of dope.
 
           Oh, then there is another piece of the puzzle, lifesaving efforts. Who gets the call when a ship, a plane, a boater or an ignorant tourist finds themselves in distress in the water? The coast guard has that honor. Off Depoe Bay, Oregon over a period of two years I’ve witnessed U.S.C.G. towing disabled boats back to harbor. I’ve seen them searching for people who’ve been swept from the rocks along our shores. Every day Coast Guard helicopters scan our coastlines for situations that need attention.  On countless other occasions, they are out there in the near shore surf practicing skills they need for high-risk rescues.
 
           These brave men and women are our last line of defense from foreign invaders. During World War II, they had the duty of watching our coastlines for invasions. Today the coast guard puts up warnings to boaters when ocean conditions grow hazardous.
 
           While nearly everyone will agree Mr. Trump has little knowledge of politics, it seems he has little in the way of understanding our national security either. The Coast Guard is a major component of our defense backbone. A strong military, indeed, strong national security requires a trained, well-staffed and active Coast Guard. Without them, a border wall will be no use at all.
 
           Mr. Trump, building a wall at the expense of our coast guard is ill advised. Find your money somewhere else. Or better yet, forget the wall and concentrate on the real needs of the United States. Illegal immigrants are not keeping Americans from jobs. Jobs flew from this country long ago in search of profits. Foreign markets pay employees less and offer fewer if any benefits, thereby reducing the cost of goods. Innovation is the pathway to increase jobs in the United States, not tariffs, forced deportations, and severely restricting legal immigration. Innovation requires better secondary and cheaper college level education for our children.    
          
            The threats to our country are great. Ill-advised actions put forth to serve a personal agenda without regard to the consequences has to be near the top of that list.