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Monday, October 7, 2019

Bizarroworld

The last 24 hours may be the most bizarre in all of tRUMP's presidency.  And that's a very low bar.  The State Department inspector general had an urgent meeting with the house intelligence committee.  It turns out that the urgency was because he was in position of crazy conspiracy documents and he wanted to get them off his hands as  soon as possible.  The documents were in an envelope addressed to Mike Pompeo, attn. Ruth.  The envelope was apparently hand delivered.  The return address said, "White House."  Inside were several  folders which contained documents on Trump Hotel stationary.  How did they come into the possession of Mike Pompeo you may ask?  Rudy Giuliani.  He put together a bunch of junk trying to show that Ukraine interfered in our elections to help Hillary Clinton.  This is, of course, directly opposite of the unanimous conclusion of 17 intelligence agency as well as the exhaustive Mueller investigation.  It is the equivalent of tRUMP suggesting that the DNC might have been hacked  by a 500 pound man sitting on his bed.

           Trump's press conference with the president of Finland could be Exhibit 1 in tRUMP's involuntary confinement hearing.  He was crazed. He turned red in the face.  He did his usual screaming and yelling.  He did his usual name calling. Then he took off on Adam Schiff.  He  said that Schiff could not hold the blank strap of Mike Pompeo.  He said it twice.  After some headscratching, people figured out that tRUMP must have meant jockstrap.  Who knew that jock is a dirty word?  tRUMP's aversion to bad language did not last long since he said that the impeachment investigation is total bullshit.  

       Back to Giuliani.  It turns out that he has visited Manafort several times in prison.  Please recall that Manafort was on the payroll of the corrupt Ukranian government.  Giuliani was probably on two missions.  First, to prove that  Ukraine supported Hillary 
Clinton.  And second, that  Joe and Hunter Biden were criminals.  Both of those theories are nonsense.  And coming from Manefort they have zero credibility.
It is tempting to laugh off these visits.  But  there is a very important  point to be made.  What  is the message that Manafort is receiving when President tRUMP's personal attorney is asking him for something?  The message is obvious.  tRUMP can pardon him if he gives some  dirt.  In my view this is another example of obstruction of justice.

    Then there is Pompeo.  After feigning complete ignorance of tRUMP's conversation with Zelezny, he finally, and  very sheepishly,admitted that he was listening to the conversation.  Pompeo's people are saying that he  recalled the ambassador to  Ukraine because he was worried about her safety.  Unfortunately for Pompeo he was listening to tRUMP say that the ambassador was a very bad person and things were going to happen to her.  As with all of tRUMP's acolytes, Pompeo's reputation for whatever it was worth is now forever sullied.

    And finally today  tRUMP said  that everyone has no doubt that the Bidens are not criminals.  Read that again.   In addition to all of his other unfamiliarity with the English language, tRUMP can't figure out double negatives.   He did exactly the same thing at his press conference with his brother Vladimir.

          This is a very brief rundown of bizarroworld.  I am sure you can give plenty of other examples that I missed from the last 24 hours.  In the world of sanity, Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff had a fabulous news conference.  They are so smart and so objective and so patriotic.  I think they are going to prevail and tRUMP is going down.  Before that happens he is going to flail  and attack even more outrageously.  It won't be pretty but he is going down.  Take care all.

                                                                 Richard

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Whistleblower

Since the time Traitor Trump began his campaign until today there have been any number of instances where people have speculated that the end of tRUMP had arrived. So far we have all been wrong. Maybe this time the tipping point has arrived. The acting director of national intelligence is supposed to testify to Congress on Thursday. He has been subpoenaed to supply the whistleblower complaint to Congress. If he does not he is continuing to break the law. I understand that there are several Democratic congress men and women who flipped their districts who now say they will vote for an impeachment investigation if the whistleblower complaint is not delivered.
Just to refresh your recollection, Michael Atkinson inspector general for the intelligence committee wrote that the whistleblower's complaint is of "urgent concern" Mr. Atkinson is a tRUMP appointee. His finding requires that the whistleblower complaint be provided to congress within 7 days after the "acting" director of national intelligence receives it. tRUMP's acting director of national intelligence did not comply with his legal obligation. Instead , he consulted with tRUMP's attorney general which received input from the White House. This activity is so wrong on so many levels.
Here is why I ask the question about whether Traitor Trump is telling the truth . He made a statement that everyone but him has read the report and they are all laughing. There is much to unpack in that simple statement. First, he says that he has not read the report. I don't believe him. He certainly seems to know exactly what is in the report. Second he says that everyone is laughing at the report. Again, I don't believe him. I think there is not a soul laughing at the whistleblower's report. But the third element of the statement is by far the most concerning. tRUMP claims that "everyone" has read the report. What if he is telling the truth? It is entirely possible that he is.
To start, every whistleblower statute explicitly requires that the whistleblower's complaint be seen by only a limited number of people and must be kept strictly confidential. If "everyone" has seen the report, it has a totally chilling effect on future whistleblowers. They can no longer be assured that their complaint will remain confidential. It certainly has a devastating effect on the whistleblower in this case.
Second, we are dealing with national intelligence. Does "everyone" include people with no security clearance?" If in this instance tRUMP is telling the truth, he has betrayed our country once again.
There are so many parts to this story. This is one I find most interesting. On August 8, Dan Coats, former national security advisor interrupted a meeting which included his deputy to tell her she must resign immediately. The whistleblower filed his or her complaint on August 12. Coats and Gordon left on August 15. Did Coats resign because he knew about tRUMP's traitorous conversations with the prime minister of Ukraine? I don't believe in coincidences.
So is this the tipping point? We will know a lot more on Thursday. If Congress is denied information which the law says must be shared with Congress, the next step could well be an impeachment investigation. Even Nancy Pelosi, the reluctant impeacher, seems to be saying ,"Yes." Stay tuned.
Richard

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Corporate Democrats

Apparently, it is necessary to identify and define corporate Democrats. The first step is to recognize that there is objectively a split in the ruling class. The Republican party represents the most reactionary, racist. male supremacist section of the ruling weighted heavily weighted with inherited wealth. Trump did not come out of nowhere. The Republican party has used "wedge" issues for over 60 years particularly when
Goldwater carved out the South as the base of the Republican Party. They attacked Democrats as soft on crime and established the war on drugs which was a smoke screen to attack the anti-war movement and the militant Black power movement. They attack busing, affirmative action, feminism, governmental regulation, unions, and on and on all identified as The Democratic Party.
There is as section of the ruling class that controls the Democratic party that is in favor of busing but not strongly, that is opposed to mass incarceration but not with conviction, that allows diversity but not integration, that above all requires the protection of capitalism. They are in favor of unions as long as they are weak and obedient.
That leaves the working class with one of 2 choices: the reactionary Republican party or the corporate based Democratic Party. Because the choice is so troublesome, I say we have been fighting a rear guard action until Bernie broke through the control and energized the progressive base of the party, uniting all who have been left out.
A corporate Democrat accepts the history of choosing the lesser of 2 evils and bowing to the demands of big money donors. That includes all candidates except Bernie. The first requirement is to announce that they are capitalists to insure their loyalty. And they are losers: Clinton lost 7 senators, 45 representatives and 11 governors; Obama lost 9 senators, 63 representatives 13 governors. And they lost 1000s of down ballots. In addition, they have caused millions of people to give up on voting. Hope is the only revolutionary mechanism and 2018 provided that. Even then corporate Democrats cling to their losing strategy. Bernie is the one person who can implement change and defeat Trump/Republicans. Yours in Struggle Ron

Wednesday, August 28, 2019

Trump bars two U.S. Congresswomen from Israel

As I have often said, when you think that tRUMP can't go any lower, he exceeds your expectation. His limbo trick is now subterranean. tRUMP encouraged Israel to bar two U.S. Congresswomen from visiting Israel. When his partner in crime Netenyahu announced the ban, tRUMP tweeted with glee. The decision by Netanyahu and tRUMP's support are disgraceful. tRUMP tweeted that if Israel allowed the two congresswomen to visit it would be a sign of great weakness. Needless to say the exact opposite is true.
I am a former member of AIPAC. I gave up my membership for a fundamental reason. AIPAC's raison d'etre is to support the State Of Israel whether or not its policies are, in my opinion, wrong. I don't support my own country right or wrong. Therefore I will not support Israel right or wrong. On the other hand, I totally agree with AIPAC's mission to support the State Of Israel and to strengthen Israel's ties with the United States. Israel remains the sole democratic country in a sea of undemocracy.
I am a member of J Street. J Street's mission also is to support the State Of Israel. But if Israel has a policy which J Street feels is wrong, J Street will criticize Israel. I have witnessed first hand some bitter disputes between AIPAC and J Street. But their fundamental disagreements do not detract from their core missions of support for Israel.
I have been a member and then an observer of AIPAC for more than 30 years. AIPAC has issued an eloquent denunciation of Netanyahu's decision. In my memory, this is the first time that AIPAC has criticized a policy of Israel. My hat is off to AIPAC. J Street has issued a similar denunciation. It is a joy to see these sometimes bitter rivals agree on an important issue. To a large extent, this coming together is an unintended consequence of tRUMP's ignorance.
Make no mistake, I do not like either Tlaib or Omar. They both support BDS. I believe that at its core BDS is antisemitic. The BDS manifesto says that it is opposed to the "occupation". BDS is not referring to the West Bank alone. It considers all of Israel to be an occupier of Arab lands. This means that BDS wants to see Israel eliminated. I don't blame the Israeli government for denouncing supporters of BDS. But Israel is a democracy. Anyone who has been to Israel knows that there are robust disagreements, to say the least, among many factions in Israel. But Israel is a strong nation. It can well handle dissent. It is simply unforgivable that Israel is barring two duly elected United States Congresswomen.
Last week Congressman Steny Hoyer led a large delegation of congressmen to Israel. He has led many similar delegations in the past. You cannot find a stronger supporter of Israel than Steny Hoyer. In last week's trip, Congressman Hoyer met with Rashida Tlaib's grandmother in the West Bank. This is how democracy in Israel works. Hoyer has denounced Netenyahu's decision.
I remember well Saudi Arabia barring U.S. Senators who happened to be Jewish from entering its country. It may still be the policy in some Arab countries that they will not allow people into their country if there is an Israeli stamp on their passport. This policy by Netenyahu bears a striking resemblance to those abhorrent policies. Israel is a small country in size, but a big country in democratic ideals. Its Palestinian Arab citizens vote in Israeli elections and have representatives in the Israeli Parliament.. I hope that Netenyahu and his crew will return to Israel's idealistic roots. That's my view. Take care all.
Richard Lenter

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Jews and Trump

I am the son of a child refugee from Nazi Germany who was thrown out of his school as a Jewish student while my grandfather’s shoe store was boycotted in the mid 1930s by the Nazis. I am horrified that today over 85 years since the Nazis came to power in Germany the same hateful tropes are being used to take away people’s dignity and accuse them of being rapists and deny them access to their children.
My family were fortunate that the UK took them in, while the US refused to accept many of those Jews who later died in the death camps, including Anne Frank and her family. My grandfather also initially tried to immigrate to the US, but was refused entry.
The death camps came at the end of a long process of dehumanization and the normalization of discrimination and hatred. I am not suggesting Trump has mass murder in mind, but tearing mothers from their infant children was also a method Hitler used and it leads people to see those parents and children as not fully human or deserving of the same rights “we" deserve for our own children.
The duelling demonstrations in Detroit last night at the Holocaust Museum were very informative. The Republicans stood shoulder to shoulder with the Proud Boys (no friends of the Jews) and claimed they would never allow an anti-semite to stay in their party. Have they never heard of Steve King the republican representative from Iowa who is a proud white supremacist?
Whatever your view of the current fault lines in America there can be no doubt that my grandparents would find the behaviour of the racists and white supremacists chanting “The jews will not replace us” in Charlottesville very familiar especially given the proud Nazis marching with swastikas and torches in a replay of the terror they inflected on Jews in Germany prior to the Holocaust.
If my father was alive today he would be appalled at the situation we find ourselves in. I fully expect that the great majority of American Jews will help vote Mr Trump out of office next year. Most Jews are just not that dumb as to vote for a would-be dictator and vapid racist
.
Robert Oppenheimer, Canada

Fox News

By now you know that I am the eternal optimist. Kathryn hates my optimism. She much prefers being surprised by a victory rather than surprised by a defeat. We were all shell shocked by the totally unexpected loss by Hillary. So I was wrong about Hillary. But I was right about Barack when he trailed Hillary in the polls in 2008. So here is another dose of my optimism.
I wrote a long time ago that if Fox News abandons Despicable Don, then he's a goner. There is much evidence that he is losing Fox.
There are millions of Americans whose political reality is shaped solely by Fox News. We all know that this administration is the most corrupt in U.S. history. We all know that tRUMP is a pathological liar . We all know that tRUMP has done incalculable damage to our country. Viewers to Fox News know none of these things. I have seen interviews with tRUMP supporters who honestly believe that he is the best president in U.S. history. How is this possible? It is possible if your only source of information is Fox. Just imagine what would happen if Fox News turned on him. There are plenty of signs this is happening.
It appears that Fox is now run by Rupert Murdoch's son, Lachlan. The son is not a sycophant for tRUMP. There are several tRUMP critics on Fox. Donna Brazile has been hired by Fox. So has been Juan Williams. Fox polling shows that tRUMP trails at least four Democratic candidates by huge margins. I believe that tRUMP was universally criticized on Fox for his disgraceful appearance in El Paso
You don't have to believe me about the changes happening at Fox. Listen to what tRUMP says, "Fox has changed. The worst polls have always been from Fox. Something is going on at Fox I'll tell you right now. And I don't like it." God willing, he's right for once. What if the decision makers at Fox look at their own polls and decide to abandon the losing side?
At the moment lots of Democratic voters are disheartened by the lack of a transcendent candidate like Obama. They may not be transcendent but they are very good, all of them. I am optimistic even without Fox turning on tRUMP. But if it does, he's toast. Take my optimism for what it's worth. Take care all.
Richard Lenter

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Democratic presidential candidates

My son Jed wrote this plea to the Democratic presidential candidates not gaining traction. I sent it on to my senators and ask that you do the same. They have a vested interest in seeing Massacre Mitch and his Republican henchman ousted.
Dear Beto O'Rourke, Julian Castro, John Delaney, Steve Bullock, John Hickenlooper, Jay Inslee, Tim Ryan, Amy Klobuchar and Stacey Abrams,
We need you to be patriots. We need you to drop out of the democratic presidential primary and run home to your states and fight for democratic ideals and winnable seats. And, Stacey Abrams, we need you to enter the race - the senate race in Georgia.
We need you all to hold your seats or seek new office to take back the Senate, expand governorships and hold valuable ground we can't seed to a lost party that has been hijacked by white nationalism, Russian oligarchs, corporate wealth and lobbyists that fight against the welfare of our citizens.
Beto and Julian - Go back to Texas - Julian should run for Senate and Beto should build his case to become governor in 2022 by helping Julian win. If one of you runs for Senate, you might get Texas close to turning blue in the presidential race. You'll at least get the GOP spending money out of fear.
Delaney - Go back to Maryland and make the case to become governor in 2022. Flip that seat.
Bullock - go win the 2nd Senate seat in Montana. It's winnable in 2020.
Hickenlooper - Go win another Senate seat in Colorado. It's likely one of the most winnable GOP seats in 2020.
Inslee - Stay the course in Washington and keep making the case for climate change. Become our climate czar when we take back the White House.
Ryan - Keep building your profile and fighting for middle America. Hold your seat.
Klobuchar - Keep raising your voice and represent mid-western citizens and hold onto that seat.
Abrams - join the fight. Keep up your effort in Georgia to end voter suppression, but use that platform to build a case to win a Georgia senate seat. If you run, you might just get Georgia close to turning blue in the presidential race. You'll certainly get the GOP's attention and spending.
We need you all now more than ever in other places than the presidential primary. Beating Trump is a high priority, but it won't mean nearly as much if we don't flip critical Senate seats and governorships.
Respectfully,
A Concerned American