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State of American History, Civics, and Politics

Impeach, Indict, Investigate or Ignore?: This Is Not a Gerry Ford Situation

"I will be the hero!" (The Atlantic interview 9/26/19)

President Gerry Ford is back in the news… and not in a Chevy Chase way. He is in the news because of an act he did to heal the nation: he pardoned a President who had resigned in disgrace. That action is hailed as a way of moving forward from our current impeached president and sore loser today. Biden is asked not to inflict any more emotional turmoil and angst on an exhausted country that wants the nightmare to end and life to get back to normal.

Unfortunately we are not living in a Gerry-Ford moment.

This time the President was impeached.
This time the President has not admitted guilt or even conceded that he lost the election.
This time the President is planning to be politically active after he leaves office.
This time the President is planning to run again.
This time the President has a cult following who will continue to accept him as their Lord and Savior, the Chosen One, Blessed Be his Name for the indefinite future.
This time the President has $421 million in debts to pay.
This time the President is facing multiple lawsuits and indictments.
This time the President is an immature child and sore loser.
This time the President is creating the “Stop the Steal” myth as the new “Lost Cause.”

As a country we don’t have the option of putting our heads in sand and pretending the most corrupt President in the history of United States is part of our past. Who knows what parting gifts he will give the alpha-male who dominates him as part of the effort to Make Russia Great Again.

What then should We the People do? Last July, I wrote (Who Will Be Biden’s Attorney General?):

If Joe Biden is sworn in as the new President, where will the former President be at that moment? He will not be there to watch the sleepy-creepy-corrupt person who has lost his mental faculties take office. It will be difficult enough for the current President to accept the concept that THE DONALD is a loser. Especially if he is a loser to someone who received more than 306 Electoral College votes… He will not have the image of him as a loser become a defining one for him.

Well, Biden didn’t receive more Electoral votes than THE DONALD had in 2016 but he did receive 6 million votes than THE LOSER did in 2020. As gratifying as it might be to handcuff the Sore Loser on the golf course on January 20, 2021, or before he announces his candidacy for 2024, that action probably is not the best way to go. It is better to take it one step at a time and build a public case rather than to abruptly dive into the depths of his depravity the moment he leaves the White House for good. Ironically, 2021 may be remembered as the year the American people gained their immunity and the year the Sore Loser lost his.

STEP 1 RELEASE THE DOCUMENTS

During the various hearings and investigations, Congress requested documents be released. For the most part, the Criminal in-chief declined to do so and instructed all employees in the Executive branch of the government not to comply with the duly authorized subpoenas or requests. President Biden should publicly release all such documents except when there are national security concerns. Those security documents should only be released to the Congressional committees or Department of Justice. Considering how narrow the Democratic majority is, the House may not be the best venue for discovering the truth.

STEP 2 INTERVIEW THE PEOPLE

During the various hearings and investigations, Congress subpoenaed people to testify. For the most part, the Criminal in-chief declined to allow them to do so and instructed all employees in the Executive branch of the government not to comply with the duly authorized requests. The people who were willing to cooperate and were prevented from doing so should be interviewed in this step. This also includes people such as Inspectors General who have lost their jobs. The people here will not need to be subpoenaed because they are willing and eager to talk. They may even have written books about their experiences in the White House. The testimony of these people in conjunction with the documents released in Step 1 will help build a public case in the effort to determine what really happened.

STEP 3 INTERVIEW THE PARDONED PEOPLE

In that same July 2019 blog, I wrote:

If he resigns an hour before so his Vice President who is now President can pardon him, he is still subject to state law. He also still can be subpoenaed for investigations at the federal level. That means he will subject to contempt charges if he is a no-show and be confronted with a perjury trap if he does.

Now with the Flynn pardon and more to come, we are moving beyond the theoretical to the actual. This admonition applies to any and all pardoned people including himself if he deploys the Pence maneuver. The information gathered in Steps I and 2 mean the people who don’t want to tell the truth have lost the option of pleading the Fifth Amendment. Some of them still won’t tell the truth in the hope that they never will be indicted, convicted, sentenced, and jailed. Still they all should be required to testify.

STEP 4 INTERVIEW THE UNPARDONED AND UNCOOPERATIVE PEOPLE    

Theoretically, this category could include the former Vice President, the former Attorney General, the former Secretary of State, the former Postal Inspector, former multiple people from Homeland Security, the still-current son-in-law, the Fox triplets, and who knows how many others. These people may take the Fifth. That is why it is essential to go through Steps 1-3 first to lay the groundwork for the testimony of these people.

There should be a standing invitation to the Sore Loser to testify under oath at any time he wants.

The purposes of the investigations are twofold:

1. To determine for the record what actually happened.
2. To determine what regulatory and legal changes are needed so they can’t happened again.

The purpose is not to indict people except when they lie under oath.

The areas to be covered are:

1. Russian collusion and submission to Putin.
2. The cover-up including related obstruction and abuse of power in the previous investigations.
3. Ukrainian extortion.
4. The cover-up including related obstruction and abuse of power in the impeachment.
5. The assault on the election process both before and after the election.
6. The incompetence and ineptitude in the management of the coronavirus pandemic.

The actions identified under #1 may be considered treasonous. That will be determined when the investigation is complete. Technically the assault on the democratic process, the rule of law, and freedom of the press are not acts of treason done on behalf of foreign adversaries even if those actions aid his once-hoped-for business partners Russia and China. Still We the People need to know what happened. I will leave it to others to determine what to call these actions to undermine the United States of America.

This investigation will provide an opportunity for Rudy Giuliani to rise to the occasion. He said in an interview with The Atlantic in September 2019:

“It is impossible that the whistle-blower is a hero and I’m not. And I will be the hero! These morons—when this is over, I will be the hero. “I’m not acting as a lawyer. I’m acting as someone who has devoted most of his life to straightening out government,” he continued, sounding out of breath. “Anything I did should be praised …. You should be happy for your country that I uncovered this.”

Once upon a time nearly 20 years ago, Giuliani was an American hero. Like those high-school athletes remembering their glory days, he has been trying desperately to regain that status to the point where he has become a joke. He has one last chance to be the hero. I doubt he will take it even when subpoenaed to testify.

2 thoughts on “Impeach, Indict, Investigate or Ignore?: This Is Not a Gerry Ford Situation

  1. Geez, I thought you were talking about Joe Biden. His China intrigues, his Ukraine extortion, his family’s selling of influence, his part in Obama’s “irregularities” (such as selling weapons to cartels, IRS stonewalling conservative groups, caving in to Putin over Syria, Obama’s DOJ stonewalling subpoenas, etc.) No president has clean hands, never has, never will. Nobody rises to that pinnacle of power by being a pure-as-silk snowflake. Going after Trump may be satisfying on a personal level — which, by the way, I do agree it would be — but in context of healing the wounds and unifying the country that would be disastrous. It’s now up to the Democrats to decide if we will rise above the muck or just confirm that we’re no better than a third world autocracy jailing political opponents. Sore loser? Yeah, Trump is. But why be a sore winner? (I’m an Independent libertarian type mostly).
    By the way, I thoroughly enjoy your posts on American history and the “Indian” vs “Indigeneous” dialogue. Thank you for bringing to light the African history of Bantu migration. How about Attila the Hun in the Balkans/central Europe, or Muslim armies battling in France, and even better, where is the call for Neanderthal justice for being wiped out by homo sapien migration from Africa? Like most Europeans, I too have Neanderthal DNA — where’s my reparations? Yes, exaggeration to make the point that European migration to the America’s was not evil or even an aberration, but the normal course of human history. The Indians put up a helluva fight — it took 270 years to finally militarily subdue the Indians. Hardly an English steamroller. But they were small stone-age societies fighting the most modern nation-states of the time. But did the Indians ever actually lose a fair-fought battle? Perhaps just one or two (Tippecanoe?). Atrocities, betrayals, lying, and raw power occurred in ample quantities. Is that unique to America? Not by a long shot. The history of Spanish conquest in Central and South America and the Caribbean is far far worse. Not to mention in Africa (who captured and sold their own people), or even China today (against Muslims and Christians, and Tibetans), and throughout human history. This isn’t a justification, just the recognition of the common use of power and self-interest. Even the Indians fought and enslaved each other — does anyone remember that there was once a tribe called the Eries? There was until the Iroquois Nation annihilated them. Even Hollywood’s “Dancing with Wolves” showed inter-tribal warfare. Indians are humans as well. And that’s the most important point of all.
    Thank you again for your writings.
    p.s.: I’m told that I had an ancestor killed in the King Philips War. But I won’t hold a grudge 🙂 I also had an ancestor who was accused of being a witch in Salem and died in prison circa 1690. My English ancestors arrived in Newburyport, Mass., in 1630. But by now my family is the typical Heinz 57 varieties – type. My two grandsons are half Filipino, for example. In fact the whole misguided concept of racial and cultural distinctions is fast disappearing as inter-marriage and cultural assimilation is going global. The faster, the better. Another benefit of the internet.

    1. Gordon,

      You touch on a number of things. The Biden reference was just a hook to encourage people to read the blog. It really wasn’t about Biden but a way to approach how the Irish suffered at the hands of the English before the Indians did.

      There is a lot of tunnel vision going on. People don’t something as part of the human experience but as somehow unique to them…like calling the enemy “savage.” I wrote about the extended time involved from the 17th to the 20th century century in the various Indian wars in America. It was the next blog after this one you commented on.

      It’s nice to know you don’t hold a grudge. We have statues of limitations in law, perhaps we should have one for grudges as well.

      Normally, I don’t send the political blogs to the history community.

      Peter

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