Subscribe to the IHARE Blog

Deep State versus the Trump State: Will We Celebrate the 250th Anniversary of America?

New York Times Magazine, November 10, 2019, by Paul Sahre

The 250th anniversary of the birth of this country is only a few years away. At this point, preparations are slight but there is an awareness that the time to start planning is now. If back in 1776, you had asked the Founding Fathers about the United States of America one day celebrating its 250th birthday, they would have looked at you as if you were nuts. They knew the country was an experiment. They knew the country was a work in progress. They knew the country might not last. When it reached its fiftieth birthday on the same day as the deaths of the second and third presidents and co-Declaration writers John Adams and Thomas Jefferson truly it was a sign from Divine Providence that this country was blessed.

Now we live in a time when it is reasonable to ask if we will survive another few years…or if so in what form.  Back in July, I wrote a blog about the “formal” commencement of the third civil war in the United States (July 14, 2019 = April 12, 1861 II: The Third Civil War Is Engaged). Previously I had written a blog about an earlier proposed date for the “formal” launching of the war (America’s Third Civil War: Kava-Noes versus Kava-Yeses). Occasionally, I wrote updates on the state of the ongoing culture wars since then.

Recently the intensity of the conflict appears to have escalated. While some news outlets would employ the war metaphor from time to time, such usage was not typical or routine. The declaration of war against Congressional subpoenas was one major exception. Now there have has been two rather dramatic expressions of the war terminology.  The Sunday Magazine of The New York Times on November 10 (print edition) has an image of a White House defended by tanks. The caption below reads: “What happens when the White House responds to Congress’s impeaching the president by declaring war on Congress?” Inside the magazine was an image I did not see online. It depicts a battle being fought between the White House and the Capital replete with images of Civil War charging cavalry, World War I trenches, propeller planes and paratroops, and more tanks. To the right of the image is the phrase “Impeachment Wars.”

The second example is the December issue of The Atlantic. The cover has a hand partially in red and partially in blue. The text reads “How to Stop a Civil War.”

The related articles in these two publications focus mainly on the culture wars. How are the Democrats doing in the impeachment and what are the stakes for the Republicans given the demographic changes which the country has and is continuing to experience? I certainly do not mean to diminish the importance of the culture wars that are dividing the country. My periodic blogs about Columbus Day versus Indigenous Peoples’ Day address that topic. I will continue to do so in forthcoming blogs.

But there is a second war that is being overlooked. This is the one between the Deep State and the Trump State. The confrontation is related to the culture wars but it is not one.  It is not about abortion, immigration or the politically correct – hot button culture war issues. Instead it is about the Trump State versus the Deep State, between people who are loyal to the person who happens to be president versus people who are loyal to the Constitution. I daresay given this individual president something like it was inevitable once he was elected. How come he was elected is a separate issue. It is important to recognize that the issues raised in this war are relevant no matter which party claims the presidency.

The recent events in the impeachment hearings have made clear what should have been obvious but which has received minimal attention compared to the culture wars.  In the Trump State, Article II means he can do whatever he wants. In the Trump State, it means he cannot be investigated yet alone indicted for anything he does including murdering someone in broad daylight in front of security cameras and a live TV audience on Fox & Friends. In the Trump State, Congress has no oversight power unless the President grants it. Is this really what Trumpicans want? Is this really what conservatives want? Is the President really above the law immune to any Constitutional restraints?

What we are learning now is that Deep State refers to the career professionals who place loyalty to the country and the oath they took to the Constitution to serve it first.  These people have disobeyed the Presidential order not to comply with the Congressional subpoenas or invitations at great risk to themselves. These people have been viciously attacked. The seventh-grade smart-aleck dumb-aleck cannot control himself and launched an attack on one career professional even while she was testifying.  He continues to lash out as the next witness prepares to testify. Would Trumpicans have enjoyed it more if he had intimidated the career diplomat into crying? He has no sense of decency. Do they?

Meanwhile, the seventh-grade smart-aleck dumb-aleck has surrounded himself with people who are equally vicious. His Mean Girl Press Secretary has been especially nasty and belittling. Duped-by-Russia Hannity erupts in tirades night after night about the psychotic individuals who are attempting to bring down the duly-elected President. Little Donee Dimwit exclaims that his father was elected to drain the swamp of precisely these people, the career bureaucrats who dedicate their lives to serving their country. Only someone living in an alternate reality could claim that the professional career employees are the swamp and the cabinet created by Swampbuilder represent the people we need in the military and the State Department.

By contrast the people who have obeyed the command of this President not to testify have been his political appointees. Anonymous has informed us that Little Donee Waney has meetings with his political appointees only and in secure quarters without any career officials loyal to the Constitution present.

Last December I wrote a blog about this exact situation: MAD DOG BANISHED TO THE CORNFIELDS: TWILIGHT ZONE EPISODE BECOMES REAL. The episode was It’s a Good Life first televised in 1961. In that story there is a six year old, not 13 like our President, who has extraordinary powers. He makes life a living hell for those around him subject to his whims and fancies. I will cut to chase and quote one portion of the blog relevant to the impeachment hearings today.

In that episode, one person, who is not anonymous, has had enough. He erupts:

You monster you, you dirty little monster…. maybe some man in this room; some Republican with guts, somebody who is so sick to death of living in this kind of a place and willing to take a chance will sneak up behind you and lay something heavy across your skull and end this once and for all.
Somebody sneak up behind him. Somebody end this now….
Will somebody take a lamp or a bottle or something and end this.

The printed word cannot capture the intensity of the anguish of this emotionally wrought person who can no longer endure the reign of the child. Aunt Amy tentatively reaches for a fireplace poker but refrains. She is past her prime. No one has the courage to act. The child banishes him to the cornfield. The adults are horrified at what he had done but no one does anything,

Then Thomas Friedman said, “I believe that the only responsible choice for the Republican Party today is an intervention with the president that makes clear that if there is not a radical change in how he conducts himself — and I think that is unlikely — the party’s leadership will have no choice but to press for his resignation or join calls for his impeachment.” But Friedman’s words were as flat as his world and everyone at Fox just laughed. There are no Republicans left.

The Trump State consists of the Flying Monkeys who have taken an oath of loyalty to the Wicked Witch of the White House. These are the people with first-hand knowledge who have declined to participate in the impeachment hearings. These ae the people who could become profiles in courage and do what did not happen in that Twilight Zone episode. Any day any one of these people could chose to tell the truth:

Vice President who does not defend his own staff
Acting Chief of Staff
Secretary of State who does not defend his own staff
Attorney General
National Security Chief

but none of them will. Even his personal lawyer who said in the end he would be the hero has the opportunity to save the country and really be the hero. We are still waiting.

The one possible exception is the millionaire donor who simply wanted a cushy job and the opportunity to show off that the PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES calls him directly. His memory keeps improving and he is likely to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth now that he has seen what has happened to Roger Stone and heard what the other witnesses have said. Will that be enough?

Perhaps the straw that breaks the camel’s back has been placed. Perhaps the verbal assault on the former Ambassador to the Ukraine was the insult that forces the Trumpicans to face the truth. Perhaps at last the seventh-grade smart-aleck dumb aleck has crossed the line such that even Trumpicans are disgusted and are willing to become Republicans. Perhaps now they see that

Without their support he’s nothing.
The evil remains within him.
Look how ugly he really is.
Look at him after Kentucky and Louisiana and don’t be afraid.

It is time. It is time for the party of Lincoln to take back its party from ugliness.  It is time for non-elite heterosexual white males who love their country and are in pain to catch on that they are being slicked, conned, hustled, flim-flammed, bamboozled and lied to by a staggeringly ignorant narcissist who just as easily would rip them off at his phony university for their desire to live the American Dream as he would for their vote. It is time to realize that our weeny President is submissive to alpha males who are our enemies while abandoning our allies and attacking patriots who are loyal to the Constitution. It is time for loyalty to the Constitution to trump loyalty to the president if we want to celebrate the 250th anniversary of this country as a constitutional republic. Now is the time for first-hand witnesses to rise to the occasion. Now is the time for Trumpicans to regain their decency. Don’t hold your breath.

No One to Throw Under the Bus

Who Are you Going to Blame?

The Wicked Witch of the White House and his Flying Monkeys are at the proverbial fork in the road with no Yogi Berra to guide them. On one hand, there is

NO EXTORTION, NO EXTORTION, NO EXTORTION.

On the other hand, there is

SOMEONE ELSE DID IT, SOMEONE ELSE DID IT, SOMEONE ELSE DID IT.

On the other other hand,

EVEN IF HE DID IT, IT IS NOT IMPEACHABLE.

On the other other other hand

THE DEEP STATE, THE DEEP STATE, THE DEPT STATE IS THE CORRUPT ONE.

Of course, sometimes the Flying Monkeys babble all the scenarios at once. This approach is based on the old standby: run it up the flagpole and see what sticks when you throw it against the wall!

NO COLLUSION TO NO EXTORTION

The phone call was perfect. Never in the history of the United States has there been a more perfect phone call between the President of the United States and a foreign leader. In fact, the only more perfect call is the one about to be released this week when the witch hunt hoax hearings begin.

No president comparable to Lincoln and Washington should be impeached.

The first thing every former Republican now Trumpican representative should do when they get up in the morning is to check and see what tweets have been issued since Fox & Friends began. Your loyalty is to the President and not to the Constitution. No collusion. No extortion. Read the transcript.

EVEN IF HE DID IT, IT IS NOT IMPEACHABLE

The Democrats took this approach the last time around. In January of that impeachment year all the Democratic talk was about the vast rightwing conspiracy. There was no truth to any of the charges. It was all bogus. Nine months later, it was “Yeah, he did it. So what? Get over it.” While there are closet Republicans who would like to take this approach, as Trumpicans they cannot. It will be fun in a tragic sort of way to watch former decent people wrestle with having to sell their soul to show their loyalty.  No collusion. No extortion. Read the transcript. Remain loyal or else. The threat of “or else” may not work on Republicans who are retiring and/or who have a conscience.

THE DEEP STATE, THE DEEP STATE, THE DEPT STATE   

This approach seeks to duplicate the success against the Mueller report now against Schifty Schiff. The subtext of the counterattack against the Mueller report was that the real collusion was by the Democrats with their bought and paid for Steele Dossier. It was really the Democrats who were in collusion with the Russians and the Democrats who should be investigated and charged.

But the Russian never interfered in the 2016 election as Putin publicly declared in a joint conference with the beneficiary of the actual interference siting right beside him. But the Democrats should be investigated and charged anyway even though it was not Russia but the Ukraine which interfered. Are you following this? I am having trouble doing so even as I type it!

The counternarrative believed by all Trumpicans was that the Deep State has instigated the effort to remove the duly elected and legitimate President by any means possible. Duped-by-Russia Hannity has identified the perpetrators of this covert operation. He has been salivating since the summer in expectation of the Inspector General Report that will nail these traitors to the wall. He is still drooling in anticipation as winter approaches

Once the whistleblower is exposed, the truth of the Deep State operation in the Ukrainian hoax will be revealed. The Flying Monkeys are just waiting for the opportunity to trash that person. We witnessed their assault on a decorated soldier who dared to tell the truth who really was a double agent. The Flying Monkeys do not want the whistleblower to testify so they can question this person. They want this person outed so they can destroy this person just as they will do to Anonymous once they discover that author’s name.

Meanwhile Bill Barred-for-Life apparently actually has limits to what he will do on behalf of his client. This shocking development raises some interesting questions. He was involved at some level in the extortion attempt. That means he knows first-hand at some least some of what happened. This is a different situation from the Mueller report. Suppose his global gallivanting to discover the truth of the Deep State Russian witch hunt has not turned up sufficient evidence for him to even go to a grand jury to indict Hannity’s hit list. What then? It is possible that he has a modicum of self-respect and decency to want to preserve what’s left of his integrity rather than turn into Vice President Brown Nose.

None of this will stop the Flying Monkeys in the House from launching a scorched earth assault on the Bidens. That effort will get full coverage on the Bull-Trump network and will be believed by Trumpicans. It will not stop the impeachment but it will provide an alternate reality scenario for Kellyanne Conway to live in.

As a result, there will be two televised hearings of the impeachment. One will be reported by the Fake News networks, newspapers, and websites and the other will be by the Bull-Trump counterparts. Since Trumpicans, like the mainland Chinese, only get their news from one source, the government propaganda network they will only see what Clueless Jim Jordan asks, Duped-by-Russia Hannity reports, and Little Donee Waney tweets.

WHO ARE YOUR GOING TO THROW UNDER THE BUS?

Yes, extortion did occur but it was a rogue operation conducted by people without the knowledge or approval of the world’s worst manager. He had no idea what was going on. Even the Ukrainians knew more about the extortion attempt than the President of the United States did. How could he be expected to know what his personal lawyer, chief of staff, or rich donor with no diplomatic experience were up to?

So will Man Overboard Mulvaney be the one thrown under the bus? Here is what I wrote about him last December:

Mick Mulvaney Parachutes onto a Ship in Chaos the Rats Are Abandoning

Back when Mulvaney was a normal human being, he made disparaging comments about the immature child candidate: he did not like him, he was an unfit role model for his children, and he was not a very good person. And this is from a conservative Republican….

Mulvaney considered the two candidates in 2016 to be the two of the most flawed human beings who had ever run for president in the history of the United States.

“Should either of these people be, be a role model for my 16-year-old triplets? No,” Mulvaney said on a South Carolina talk radio show in October 2016, CNN’s KFile reported. “In an ordinary universe, would both of these people’s past activities disqualify them for serving for office? Yes. But that’s not the world we live in today. The world we live in today, it’s either him or her and for me that’s still an easy choice.”

Then like so many other actual Republicans, he sold his soul and became a Trumpican. But even more than Bill Barred-for-Life, Manoverboard Mulvaney knows what really happened in the failed extortion attempt. He even said so. In public. Without a subpoena. Get over it. Now he has requested legal permission to testify before Congress and the American people. Presumably he is doing so because he intends to tell the truth once the Courts provide that permission. If he dares to tell the truth with first-hand information, what will happen to him? It will be too late to throw him under the bus if the Courts call upon him to tell the truth. But if he is thrown under the bus now, why would he even wait for the Courts to go public with the truth? Despite all the MAFIA talk and the admiration for Putin and Saudi OJ by the extortionist, it is unlikely that a hit will put on Manoverboard Mulvaney to prevent him from testifying honestly. Is there someone else close to him who can be threatened?

WHAT HAPPENS IF VICE PRESIDENT BROWN NOSE DISCOVERS THAT HE IS NOT THE HEIR APPARENT BUT NIKKI HALEY IS? WHAT HAPPENS IF HE REALIZES HE SOLD HIS SOUL IN VAIN? SUPPOSE HE LEARNS THAT NOW AND NOT SIX MONTHS FROM NOW? IS IT TOO RISKY TO THROW HIM UNDER THE BUS NOW? IT’S NOT AS IF HE WILL EVER BE A PROFILE IN COURAGE. (Will Mike Pence Become a Profile in Courage?)

Do you really think he will throw Ridiculous Ruddy, Attack Mutt, under the business? There really is not anyone who can be pinned for the blame except the person in charge. That’s why the message for all the Flying Monkeys, House Trumpicans, and Senate Trumpicans has to be NO EXTORTION, READ THE TRANSCRIPT, THE BIDENS AND THE UKRAINIANS ARE THE CORRUPT ONES.

Making Russia Great Again

"You the Man!" Trump honored to be in the presence of alpha-male Putin (BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/Getty)

“We’re going to win. We’re going to win so much. We’re going to win at trade, we’re going to win at the border. We’re going to win so much, you’re going to be so sick and tired of winning, you’re going to come to me and go ‘Please, please, we can’t win anymore.’ You’ve heard this one. You’ll say ‘Please, Mr. President, we beg you sir, we don’t want to win anymore. It’s too much. It’s not fair to everybody else.’” Vladimir Putin said. “And I’m going to say ‘I’m sorry, but we’re going to keep winning, winning, winning, We’re going to make Russia  great again.”

Russia is on a roll. Despite limited economic resources, it is moving ahead to disrupt the Western Alliance and the United States. Where it can divide peoples, it does so. Where it can fill a void, it does so. Where it can reap the benefits from the America Alone policy, it does so.

Recently Putin’s Pence handed Russia a win. The sudden and abrupt withdrawal of the United States from Syria was an unexpected gift. Putin could not even take credit for it. He could not claim to have initiated the sequence of events that led to this victory. Out of nowhere, alpha male Erdogan in a phone call to the submissive child president of the United of the States suggested that it was time for America to go home and let Turkey take care of business. He readily agreed to the surprise of everyone who was an ally or enemy of the United States.

Let’s look at what this strategically brilliant, dare one say “perfect,” decision led to.

American allies know they cannot rely on America anymore

Roger Cohen: “Europeans now shrug when they don’t laugh. The consensus is that the United States has lost. There is nobody home.” (Trump’s Gut, and the Gutting of American Credibility, NYT 10/19/19, print).

Mowaffak al-Rubaie, former Iraqi national security advisor: “This guy is all emotional. It is unpredictable….For Americans, their friends are disposable. The Americans, you look for them and they look for the closest exit. You turn around and you don’t find them.” (“Policy Zigzags by Trump Put Mideast in Fog,” NYT 10/13/19, print).

Shimrit Meir, Israeli columnist: “If you are someone that is a rival on the other side ⸺ you’re Iranian, Russian, Turkish, ISIS, Hezbollah ⸺ you understand that this is a time for gain.” (“Policy Zigzags by Trump Put Mideast in Fog,” NYT 10/13/19, print).

Who is the reliable partner to whom countries should turn? Who is it who touts its stability and consistency over the years?  As America bombs its own military facilities before the Russians can occupy them, who is exulting? Besides the Russians there are others.

Now, let’s consider what Putin has done and gauge whether he has overplayed his hand. I am not referring to his ventures into Africa. Trumphole countries that do not want to be vassals of China cannot turn to the United States for assistance. This bigoted President has no interest in them not even to build a resort. He will accept no refugees from them since the United States is full up…and he does not want any immigrants either. The result is void for Putin to fill. And he gets to test the disinformation techniques he will use in the 2020 elections.

Instead, I am referring to the Ukraine. As I previously stated, What Do Seth Rich and the Ukraine Have in Common? Answer: Sean Hannity, Putin’s tried and true tactic to discombobulate America is to give people what they want so they can make a mess of it.

It worked with the Seth Rich story on Flying Monkey Sean Hannity.

It worked with the Steele Dossier for the Democrats. The disruption still has not ceased after the Mueller report. Secret testimony now disclosed is shedding more light on the activities within the Trump campaign and White House on what they did. Meanwhile Flying Monkey Bill Barred-for-Life is traveling the globe seeking to indict the Deep State in part as a result of the Steel Dossier.

It probably worked with some voters when exposed to social media telling them exactly what they wanted.

It worked with the Ukraine.

Did it work too well? Putin advanced on three fronts in the Ukraine. First, it was the Ukraine and not Russia which interfered in the 2016 election. That initiative commenced in 2016 though the manipulation of Paul Manafort. Recall the press conference where the two national leaders joked about whether the Russians had violated the United States. Now we know that not only did Putin say “no,” but he steered the gullible American President towards the “true violator” that even the American intelligence services had yet to discover: it was the Ukraine.

The second Putin ploy was that the Ukraine had the infamous server that the longtime-Democrat-and-Clinton-supporter now pretending to be a Republican sought. We are beginning to be able to see how much he really wanted to locate those 33,000 emails. Somehow all Duped-by-Russia Hannity’s tirades about how crooked Hillary had acid washed the server and destroyed the emails was ignored. They had not been scrubbed, they were in the Ukraine! What a perfect example of the child-mind at work. And this is the very stable genius who is steering the ship of state.

The third Putin ploy is that Joe Biden and son were involved in a corruption scandal just waiting to be exposed. Unearthing this scandal would make Ridiculous Ruddy, attack mutt, the hero as he once had been after 9/11. His discovery of the reality of what originated as a figment of Putin’s mind would validate Ridiculous Ruddy’s shallow life. Clearly Putin knows how to play the conspiracy-minded President.

In each instance, Putin was providing the exact false story that the mark would eagerly embrace. But the results in the Ukraine maneuver may not be to Putin’s liking. The would-be hero is now facing potential indictment. His assorted cast of lowlife associates may now be ready to spill the beans. Never-Trumper and Deep-State operative Sondland posing as an ambassador-buying Trump-donor may now be ready to tell the truth and expose the abuse of power, cover-up, and obstruction even more: Of course, it was a quid pro quo. Get real. Sondland thought he was purchasing a nice cushy job where he could enjoy the good life in Europe. Little did he know how the Trump State operates. He apparently wants no part of it. Would that Vice President Brown Nose reach a similar epiphany! (Will Mike Pence Become a Profile in Courage?  so Nancy Pelosi won’t become President?)

Impeachment was the consequence Putin did not factor into his Ukrainian subterfuge. True if the red wave had not been successful in the 2018 elections in drowning House Republican candidates, impeachment never would have happened. Unfortunately for Putin, the Democrats now are in charge in the House and Putin’s most valuable asset in the United States is now at risk. Even though Putin will not lose his Pence though Senate removal, it is quite possible that a majority of Senate will vote for removal. The American people will see that the President of the United States exploits the power of the presidency for personal gain, lies about, and orders people to obstruct justice. Fortunately for Putin, Trumpicans do not care what this President did or did not do as long as he remains in office fighting for them. Putin has played weak hand well exploiting the submissiveness of the simpleminded immature child President but he may have overreached with the Ukraine since the United States may still be governed by the Constitution.

Do Republican Senators Have the Civic Integrity of Paula Duncan?

Bubble Boy Ventures Out into the Real World (Getty Images)

Trumpican Paula Duncan was a juror in the Paul Manafort trial. As such one might have expected her to acquit Manafort on all charges. She would know that the trial was perpetrated by the Deep State witch hunt to remove her Lord and savior, the chosen one, blessed be his name from the presidency. Therefore one could expect with reasonable confidence that her loyalty to the president would trump her loyalty to the Constitution.

Such an assumption proved wrong. The exact opposite occurred.  She voted to convict on all charges. She voted guilty even on the chargers where one and only one other juror voted not guilty.  Reporters asked her about her votes after the trial concluded. Her reply demonstrated the primacy of her civic responsibility. It was not enough to not convict someone simply because of his ties to the president. Instead she examined the evidence, weighed its meaning and voted accordingly. That vote was GUILTY. GUILTY AS CHARGED, all 18 times.

Another exercise in evidence examination just occurred in a different venue (“The History Class Focuses on an Extraordinary Era: The Present,” Audra D. S. Burch, NYT October 24, 2019, print edition). In the Chalmette, Louisiana, high school, world history teacher Chris Dier, conducted classes on impeachment. He provided background material on the three previous impeachment-related American presidents before turning to the current example. The instructor recognized an opportunity to teach a real-time lesson in civics and political science. He devoted two 90-minutes class periods to the subject. He considered it a civics class at a time when many Americans are not familiar with civics.

His goal in the class was for the students acting as [better-behaved] Representatives and Senators to answer the same questions the American people are going to be asked during the impeachment process. In the two classes, the students would deal with the questions to be faced by both the House and the Senate: should the President of the United States of America be impeached and if so should he also be removed from issue? The question of should a President who is removed from office remain eligible to run again for the office, say in 2020, was not included. Since many of the students are 17 years old, their first presidential election may revolve around these issues.

The students followed a more rigorous approach than adult voters are likely to. They studied impeachment as developed by the Founding Fathers and the procedures used in the two houses.  The students then examined the Ukrainian evidence as provided by the teacher, evidence which is growing by the day and will grow more so by the time of the actual impeachment and vote to remove.

Initially the 21 students divided into 12 to impeach, 4 not to impeach, and 5 undecided. After another round of discussion by the students the vote shifted to 14 impeach and 7 not to impeach. The district was won by Trump with 65% of the vote. Presumably not all the students told their parents how they voted.

These two examples from two different venues, a courtroom and a classroom, provide the Democrats with a blueprint for conducting the actual impeachment hearings. Both the jurors and the students examined the evidence presented to them and then discussed it. One sees hear the importance of the prosecuting attorney and the teacher. It is essential for them to present sufficient evidence in a clear narrative format accessible to the deciders to reach a desired outcome. The Kavanaugh hearings won’t work. Apparently the Democrats have wisely chosen to let lawyers make the case rather than the politicians. That process worked in the Manafort case and in the classroom. Although the teacher did not take sides, he did present the relevant material (at least in a condensed manner) sufficient for the class to work He also did instruct the students to behave in a respectful manner, a far cry from the way Congress conducts itself.

One issue for the Democrats to address in the impeachment is to recognize that there are two audiences. I do not mean the House and the Senate. As we were reminded again and again during the Mueller investigation, the confrontation is a political one which will be fought in the public arena. One side did an extremely effective job in poisoning the jury pool while the other was lackluster to the point of nonexistence. The Mueller report and the Congressional appearance turned out to be the most anticlimactic events in American history. If the Democrats do not learn from the Mueller fiasco, they are doomed to the same unsatisfactory results.

While certain events in the impeachment will take place televised during the day, the battle also will be fought in the media and on the web during and after the televised hearings. We already have seen the scorched tactics that will be unleashed against anyone who dares to tell the truth under oath. The number of people who anticipated Vindman be characterized as a double agent loyal to the Ukraine is probably about the same who foresaw the purchase of Greenland and sharpiegate. Naturally the so-called whistleblower is not one, but a Deep State operative working for Biden. The firestorm will be fierce.

One strong possibility is the impeachment hearings and removal hearings may not have the stage alone. Last summer Duped-by-Russia Hannity repeatedly stated that any day, the Inspector General would release his report documenting the abuses of the Deep State in initiating the Mueller report in the first place. He could scarcely contain himself as he anticipated the indictments of all the people he had identified as being part of the witch hunt. So far that has not happened. It is only a matter of time before the report it is released and when it is it is likely to be during the hearings. Who will be best prepared to deal with that report when it happens?

In the meantime there is a second report or action to consider now. Bill Barred-for-Life has been tasked with indicting all the people Duped-by-Russia Hannity has identified as being part of the Deep State witch hunt. The integrity of the DOJ attorney is irrelevant. Look at how Barred-for-Life spun the Mueller report and quashed an investigation into the Ukrainian incident. Is there any doubt that he will attempt to indict the entire Deep State? According to Bull Trump station talk shows, all these conspirators are now quaking in fear and lawyering up for onslaught to come. They are sore afraid. The day of reckoning is soon upon when the true guilty parties of the fake Russian collusion inquiry are exposed. That exposure will then spill over into the fake Ukrainian impeachment. The impeachment and removal hearings will not have a monopoly on the news. The war will be fought on multiple fronts.

That war already is underway. By the time Rachel Maddow has completed one of her long extended essays, Duped-by-Russia Hannity will have excoriated corrupt Schiff and his Soviet-style secret hearings a dozen times. He will do so relentlessly and persistently every single day from now until the 2020 elections if necessary. He will use the exact same words and phrases to do so as he instructs his Trumpican audience in what to believe. That audience is the one Republican Representatives and Senators fear…unless they are retiring, are not worried about backlash or primary challenges, or have a conscience.

To answer the question then, “Do Republican Senators have the civic integrity of Paula Duncan?” the answer is “NO!. WHAT ARE YOU KIDDING ME! IS THAT A TRICK QUESTION?”  However, they are not all blithering idiots. They know that the President is guilty on all charges. What they may do then is attempt to thread the needle and adopt the Democratic strategy from the last impeachment: “Yes, he is guilty but his actions do no rise to the level of high crimes and misdemeanors warranting removal from office.” They may soothe their conscience and satisfy the Trumpican voters with that maneuver but it may not satisfy the President. After all how can he be compared to Lincoln and Washington if the House impeaches him, a majority of the Senate votes to remove him from office, and the other Senators think he is guilty as charged but the infraction was too small to justify expelling him. What infraction? The phone call was perfect. Absolutely perfect. Read the transcript!

Acting Presidential: How Long Can He Keep It Up?

Beetle Bailey (October 27, 2019) the same day the crowd chanted "Lock him up"

The President of the United States has the power to set the agenda. Given that position, the individual holder at any given moment can set in motion actions, ideas, and events which reverberate throughout the nation and the world. The President may act on the basis on well-thought out decisions in collaboration with others. The President may give a speech which sets a new course of direction and initiates actions by others. And the President may act impulsively without talking with others or thinking of the consequences.

In the past few days and weeks, We the People and the world have had the opportunity to see multiple forms of decision-making in operation. We have seen a decision made as the result of a telephone call. It was with a dominant male with whom the President wishes to conduct non-presidential business for money. In that instance, there was no thought as to the consequences of the decision. There was no thought as to the actual implementation of the decision. There was no thought at all.

We the People and the world also have witnessed the execution of a carefully planned elaborately detailed operation to take out the leader of the foremost terrorist group in the world. The plan required the involvement of multiple players, was meticulously developed, and was something that required the occupant of the office of presidency to be presidential. Such grownup moments have been few in the years of the presidential campaign and presidency by this person.

Ever since he glided down that escalator, the media have been wondering when he would grow up.

When he won the nomination, some people said now he will act like a grown up.

When he won the election, some people said now he will act like a grown up.

When he delivered his first State of the Union, some people said now he will act like a grown up.

So far they have always been wrong.

Even the recent killing of Al-Baghdadi exposes the dual aspects of this president. There have been moments when he can sound presidential, when one can think that there is adult in charge in the White House instead of the adults in the White House acting to control the immature child President. These moments of adulthood and of seeming presidential usually occur when he is reading words he never wrote from a teleprompter. Such moments do not last long. He always quickly reverts to type.

Undoubtedly, it is these fleeting moments when he acts presidential by reading words he did not write from a teleprompter that produces the rigid figure he loves to mock and parody when he imitates a “president” in a professional political wrestling arena. Those stiff awkward gestures expose what he really thinks about those moments when he is obligated to act up grown up. No wonder he does not want to do it often.

But once he finished his recorded speech on the killing of Al-Baghadi and began to ad lib, the seventh-grade smart-aleck-dumb-aleck emerged. It was like watching Edward Norton transition from Aaron to Roy in Primal Fear. Once unleashed the true figure emerged untethered to an adult considerations.

1. Barack Obama failed. I succeeded.
2. My terrorist killing was greater than Obama’s terrorist killing.
3. I did not inform the Democratic leadership because it would have leaked the information.
4. The CIA does excellent work when it focuses on what it should be doing.

Even the repeated mentions by Bonespur Boy of how Al-Baghadi died whimpering and crying like a coward ring false. It certainly is possible that is how Al-Baghadi did die, but independent confirmation will be needed before the words of this President can be trusted…and so far it has not been given. But one has to wonder why Bonsepur Boy who cannot even fire someone face-to-face kept repeating this description. The person mocking Al-Baghdadi has been a whining crybaby throughout the entirety of his presidency. His was a whining crybaby during the Mueller report. He is a whining crybaby during the impeachment. He even falls short in decorum of the way the last two impeachment Presidents behaved. He will never man-up.

Now let us suppose for a moment that this President decided to fake being an adult for a more extended period of time. Everyone is assuming that in the presidential election he will go low. Everyone is assuming that he make any insult and tell any lie that he thinks he needs to do in order to win. He will be a non-stop punching machine where every blow is below the belt.

Now consider a wildly improbable alternative. Suppose he instead, he tried a different tack. Suppose he said:

I now realize that global warming is real.
I now realize that global warming is not a Chinese hoax.
I now realize that global warming is the greatest threat that mankind has ever faced.
Only a very stable genius can solve this challenge.
Only I can solve this challenge.
I must go beyond what George Washington did in creating this great country.
I must go beyond what Abraham Lincoln did in saving the union.
I must save the world.
I now realize why God placed me here is this time and this place: to be the anti-global warming President who will save this planet.

Dear reader, you may be thinking that I am nuts and that our immature child president could never say such things. Actually he could say such things. He has no ethics, He has no conscience. He has no morals. He has no values save narcissism. If his gut enabled him to realize that acting adult would turn the tables on the Democrats he could do it.

I am not saying he has the mental necessities to make such utterances. I am pointing out there is no telling what this President might do. He controls the agenda. On any given day, he could say or do anything, leaving everyone to scramble in response. I am not saying he would chose to act responsibly and pretend being an adult. Most likely, reading from the teleprompter is the limit of how long he can maintain the façade. He cannot be Aaron in Primal Fear for long; the real Roy cannot remain hidden.

But suppose he did embrace global warming and become the champion who will overcome it, how would Democrats respond? Suppose he did embrace the California pollution and mpg standards, how would Democrats respond? Suppose he did embrace the job opportunities available in reducing carbon emissions, how would Democrats respond? By impeaching him?

Interesting to speculate what the wild card in the White House might do.
Tonight’s tale from the Twilight Zone.

The Trump Doctrine: Foreign Policy with THE DONALD Captaining the Ship of State

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

“40 Wall Street actually was the second-tallest building in downtown Manhattan, and it was actually, before the World Trade Center, was the tallest — and then, when they built the World Trade Center, it became known as the second tallest. And now it’s the tallest.” [Donald Trump in radio interview with WWOR as reported by Timothy Bella, The Washington Post: it’s always about him]

From time to time, Presidents of the United States become known for their foreign policy doctrines. Washington had “no entangling alliances.” Monroe had the Monroe Doctrine. Teddy Roosevelt spoke softly and carried a big stick. Truman had the Truman Doctrine.

Certainly, it is not incumbent on a President to develop a formal doctrine or set of principles by which he is guided in his foreign policy decisions. Sometimes it is only after the fact when outsiders seek to make sense of what has occurred can some semblance of a coherent doctrine be determined. On the other hand, sometimes people lurch from event to event as they occur simply reacting to the chance circumstances of whatever happens.

And then there is the Trump Doctrine. It wasn’t always clear that there was a Trump Doctrine. So much of his decision-making seems impulsive and happenstance devoid of any coherent principles. Perhaps the best known and most consistent policy has been his submissiveness to Putin and other alpha males plus his love of theatricality centered on him. He does love playing with his Hollywood-casted toy soldiers. At least until they think they are actual people with minds of the own with loyalties to the Constitution and have to be fired/resigned.

Foreign policy has not been a big part of his administration until now. As I have written, for THE DONALD except for Mueller much of his presidency has been playtime. Now he is operating in the adult world and he is out of his league. The continual revealing of his actions taken in the Ukraine and to cover up those actions are important for two reasons. One, they will lead directly to his impeachment. Two, they provide insight into how this President who eviscerated the State Department conducts foreign affairs. His actions in Syria are a beacon to the world: he can be rolled by dictators and abandons allies without any awareness of there being consequences to his actions – there are no adults in the White House.

What does this all mean?

MIKE MULVANEY

Let’s begin with Mike Mulvaney, a former adult who regressed into being a babbling baby. He actually was a pretty good predictor of his own situation.

Mulvaney added he believed Trump’s emotional appeals and cavalier attitude might prompt him to try going around the Constitution.

“I wonder who is more interested in going around the Constitution in order to get things done. Barack Obama or Donald Trump,” Mulvaney said. [CNN, December 21, 2018]

We all know the answer to that debate! We all know that once Mulvaney became a member of this administration he had no qualms about circumventing the Constitution. Of course there was a quid pro quo! Get over it – perhaps the very words that will define him for all eternity on his tombstone.

In my blog entitled Mick Mulvaney Parachutes onto a Ship in Chaos the Rats Are Abandoning, written at the same time as the CNN article, I wrote the following about Syria then:

The more the real world presses in, the more the immature child president will lash out without any concern for the consequences. He lacks the mental necessities to understand the concept of consequences or even to care. He must give in to the impulse of the hissy fit not just in his tweets but in his decision-making. Consider his decisions to withdraw from Syria and half-withdraw from Afghanistan. Far from being well-thought decisions carefully implemented, they are case studies in the decision-making process of our immature child president who feels more and more trapped by the real world. Look at what has happened in just a tweet.

– He has granted Recep Tayyip Erdoğan the coveted 00 O.J, license to kill previously awarded to Putin and MBS.
– He has shown no loyalty to the Kurds who put their lives on the line to fight with us as allies against ISIS.
– He has shown that the very concept of “allies” has no meaning to the transactional President – unless you can offer something to him he could not care less about you.
– He has no interest in America being a world leader and does not care who fills in the vacuum.

All things considered, I think I nailed that one. While I did not exactly predict the current situation, I think I described a reasonable facsimile of what has and is transpiring.

What I did not formulate was the Trump Doctrine of foreign policy that now can be seen more clearly.

1. Be submissive to alpha males especially if there is the prospect of a business deal with them.
2. Actions 7,000 miles away do not matter.
3. There are no allies, everything is transactional.
4. There are no alliances, everything is individually transactional.
5. We should only help people fighting for their land if they were with us at Normandy.
6. We should only help people fighting for their land if they cover our costs.
7. We will ask you to provide dirt on political opponents even if it is not true.

Hard as I may seem to believe, these guidelines one day will be studied in school along with the other doctrines previously mentioned. Students will even be tested on their ability to recall and recite the Trump Doctrine.

In the present, countries have no problem understanding what the Trump Doctrine is. They may have grave fears about what it means for them but they have no doubts that as long as the current President remains in office, these guidelines remain in place.

Saudi Arabia can afford us even though it was not at Normandy. And it buys Trump properties. Yet we did nothing when Iran attacked it. One has to wonder what our President will do even if our troops are paid for when Iran attacks again.

The Baltic States cannot afford us and they were not at Normandy. If Russia ever decides it has the resources to invade the Baltics, we will do nothing. In this regard, the Ukraine imbroglio works to the advantage of the Baltic States. The longer Russia is bogged down there and the sanctions remain, the less likely it is to attack any Baltic State.

Taiwan can afford us but was not at Normandy. Even if it does not pay us now, China is probably too preoccupied at present to invade so there is no urgency to Taiwan paying us. However, if that moment of truth comes in the present administration, Taiwan better cough up the money fast if it wants our assistance.

Israel can afford us but was not at Normandy. Even if it does not pay us now, Iran is probably aware of what Israel would do in retaliation to an attack. In addition, Hezbollah is too busy trying to maintain control in Lebanon to attack Israel now even if it acquires sufficient precision missiles to eliminate Israel’s retaliatory ability.

The Trump Doctrine marks the end of the post-World War II era of international diplomacy. We have been in transition since the fall of the Iron Curtain and the “end of history.” Now a new doctrine has been implemented. Coalitions and alliances have been replaced by the rule of alpha males, transactional relationships, and foreign interference in American Presidential elections on behalf of the President. The old saying of “commander in chief and leader of the free world” is obsolete.

Allies are abandoned, enemies are emboldened. They don’t watch Fox, They don’t attend his professional political rallies. They don’t worship THE DONALD. They know the truth of the immature child masquerading as the adult THE DONALD. Trumpicans are still living the lie. Perhaps by the time of the impeachment and the trial to remove him, the Trumpicans finally will see the truth behind the act. Perhaps watching THE DONALD be rolled will achieve what the Mueller report did not. Perhaps the sacrifice of the Kurds will achieve what the Democrats have been unable to do. Perhaps the real world will expose the lie that is THE DONALD and bring this show to a close.

The Wicked Witch of the White House: Is Nancy Pelosi Dorothy?

Thou art the man! All roads with you lead to Putin! (A picture is worth a thousand words and that is how along this blog is)

The Wicked Witch of the White House is a formidable foe. He has been a sleezeball virtually his entire chronological adult life. Year after year he won the coveted “Slimeball of the Year” trophy awarded by the New York City Real Estate and Construction community to the single most disreputable builder in the city.

His winning was no fluke. He is blessed with having no morals, no ethics, and no values save narcissism. He brings to the fight an inexhaustible energy. He throws an unlimited number of punches all below the belt.  Now our immature child president has brought his lack of integrity, competence, and intelligence to the national and international arenas. He is a full-time resident of an alternate reality functioning at a child level with supreme confidence that he can get enough people to believe he really is THE DONALD, the chosen one, and that only he can solve the problems (he has caused).

The Wicked Witch of the White House is not alone. Standing with him are the Flying Monkeys. These are the people who have sold their souls to their Lord and Savior assuming they had souls to sell. They have sworn an oath to take a bullet for him. They will obstruct any effort to obtain the truth. They willingly will be thrown under the bus once their usefulness ends. As always, loyalty is a one-way street.

The Flying Monkeys are well-known to the American public. They frequently appear on Fox if they do not already work there. They include:

Vice President Brown Nose
Bill Barred for Life
Jay Sunk-so-low
Duped-by-Russia Hannity
Nunes the Clown
Clueless Jim Jordan
Marked-down Meadows
Meeting-crasher Maculate Gaetz
All Angles Ingrham
The Grahm Cracker
Kelly Alternate-Reality Conway
The Huckabee Huckster
Ridiculous Rudy, Hero Attack mutt

and the list goes on and on.

The Wicked Witch of the White House and his Flying Monkeys are further aided by Trumpicans – the American people who attend his realities, ignore or disbelieve all charges against him, and cheer him on. His skill as a con artist is his ability to connect with them through his gut-instinct. He uses their pain to service his gain. The results have been spectacular.

Now the real world is closing in. Playtime is over. The Wicked Witch of the White House in the domestic and foreign arenas has to face adults. This is not scripted political professional wrestling where he can mock and insult people all he wants as the seventh-grade smart-aleck dumb-aleck he actually is. The doctored videos of him wreaking havoc against his foes will not help him in the real world of adults. North Korea, Iran, Turkey, and Russia all know he is a weeny limited to simpleminded tweets and sanctions.  The only ones who fear him now are our allies as they know they can no longer rely on the United States as long as Bonespur Boy is President. It’s not Turkey who is concerned, it is the Baltics who destroyed Yugoslavia, it is Israel who knows it faces Iran alone, and it is the Kurds who know even a private message to the President of the United States will be delivered to their enemy.

This is Nancy Pelosi’s moment. This is the moment that history will look to try to understand what the American people finally did when their immature child President attempted to function in the adult world and did not have the mental necessities to do so.

At this point for all practical purposes impeachment is a done deal.  As far as the Ukraine is concerned the public record itself is sufficient grounds to impeach. The hearings serve only to disclose how extensive the conspiracy and coverup were in the effort to use the American government to pursue personal political needs to get dirt on an opponent and then to hide the effort. The testimony of the people outside the power of the Wicked Witch of the White House or who defy it will simply provide the details for the articles of impeachment…not whether or not there will be any.

For those still under the sway of the Wicked Witch of the White House, their obstruction will only serve to add obstruction articles to the impeachment. Their actions will not prevent it. These people have been advised on several talking shows of their need to get lawyers for their own defense.

The number of people involved in the conspiracy raises the question of how Pelosi should proceed. The impeachment of the President is the end game but should it be the only game? As We the People were reminded again and again during the Mueller investigation, Department of Justice guidelines prohibit the indictment of a sitting president. Putting aside the issue of whether that is a Constitutional restriction or simply a matter of policy, that leaves exposed people who are not President.

My advice, for whatever it is worth, is to start with the unprotected non-Presidential people prior to the impeachment of President himself.  In particular, start with the Attorney General. At minimum that should force him to recuse himself. His removal from power will make it easier to pursue the other unprotected people through the federal attorneys. Bill Barred for Life would no longer be able to curtail the work of the Department of Justice the way he declined to pursue the whistleblower’s report in the first place. In fact, that decision could easily be the first article of indictment against him.

Following the indictment of Attorney General, Pelosi could proceed week by week to recommend indictments of the remaining members of the conspiracy and cover:

Vice President
Acting Chief of Staff
Secretary of State

and whoever else deserves it. Then would come the big one.

By that time, would even Republicans in the House of Representatives support impeachment? It’s possible. The 354-60 vote to rebuke the President on his Syria pullout including 129 Republicans shows that it is possible for even the majority of Republicans in the House to defy the Wicked Witch of the White House. It also identifies the 60 Flying Monkeys in the House. In other words, the brilliant strategy in Syria may create the context which the perfect Ukrainian phone call did not. Now Republicans in the House and Senate can free themselves from the power of the Wicked Witch of the White House and vote to impeach and remove him from office…maybe even in time to select another candidate for 2020. But that’s the subject of another blog or two.

“You’ll Be Back”: Hamilton’s King George III Got It Right

Jomathan Groff as King George III (https://www.hollywoodreporter.com)

I attended the opening night of Hamilton on Broadway. It was easy. The tickets went for sale at 9:00. At one second after 9:00, I was on the website. The theater was empty. I had my choice of seats as none were taken. I could have bought as many as I wanted…and for as many performances as I wanted. If I had known better, I would have cashed in my IRA!

At the opening performance everyone was excited. The buzz was palpable. Ron Chernow was there looking somewhat shell-shocked that his book was a Broadway musical. Then the musical began. Suddenly something strange happened. A white guy appeared on stage. He was singing British pop not hip hop. He was King George III. The song he was singing was “You’ll Be Back.” He brought down the house. Apparently, it was the first song Lin-Manuel Miranda wrote for Hamilton and he did so on his honeymoon. Even though Jonathan Groff’s performance lasted a mere nine minutes per show, he received a nomination for the Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical.

The tone and much of the language for this song appears to come from an actual address King George III made to Parliament on October 27, 1775. In the address, as in the song, George uses the words “loyal” and “subject” several times, followed by a proclamation that he will use force to put a speedy end to the revolt in America. From the address:

They have raised troops, and are collecting a naval force; they have seized the public revenue, and assumed to themselves legislative, executive and judicial powers, which they already exercise in the most arbitrary manner, over the persons and property of their fellow-subjects: And altho’ many of these unhappy people may still retain their loyalty, and may be too wise not to see the fatal consequence of this usurpation, and wish to resist it, yet the torrent of violence has been strong enough to compel their acquiescence, till a sufficient force shall appear to support them.

King George III may yet prove right. As we approach the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence from England, the desire for a monarchy, a life-long position where you are legally untouchable, looms large with the current president.

Let’s look at the record as Shepard Smith would have reported it.

But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce We the People under absolute Despotism, it is our right, it is our duty, to impeach such Government, and to provide new Constitutional and statutory guards for our future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of We the People; and such is now the necessity which constrains us to impeach the current Government. The history of the present President of the United States of America is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over We the People. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has disparaged the first President of the United States because he did not name anything after himself the way the great kings of ancient Egypt and Mesopotamia had.

He has asserted that Article II gives him the authority and power to do whatever he wants.

He has asserted that as President he cannot even be investigated yet alone indicted, tried, or convicted.

He has asserted that as President he and he alone can decide what checks and balances are to be adhered to.

He has asserted that as President he and he alone can decide what subpoenas to obey and what legislative requests to follow.

He has asserted that as President he and he alone can decide if an impeachment inquiry is valid.

He has asserted that as President that he cannot be guilty of obstruction since everybody who works for him or who is directly connected to him or by six degrees of separation is connected to him is covered by executive privilege and not subject to Congressional subpoenas.

He has asserted that whistle-blowers are traitors and should be treated as spies who should be executed.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A President whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of the Country, solemnly publish and declare, That We the People are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent People; that We are Absolved from all Allegiance to this President, and that all political connection between We the People and Donald Trump, is and ought to be totally dissolved. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Not exactly. On a recent Erin Burnett show, Kim Wehle, author of How to Read the Constitution and Why, expressed the view that Americans should be familiar with the Constitution. We are not a monarchy. She was correct to point out that was true in 1776 but that does not mean it is true in 2019. Maybe Hamilton’s King George III was right after all and we do want a king…or at least many Americans do.

A judge found the behavior of the current President to be “repugnant” and at odds with the Constitution – but where were the lawyers to tell their client the President that it was repugnant and in gross violation of the Constitution?

A judge regurgitated the Fox talking points in legalese in a 2-1 defeat of the President – but suppose there were more Trump-appointed judges on the bench were called upon to rule in such cases, who would win then?

Trump-appointed judges still have cases to adjudicate – how will they rule on ‘L’etat c’est moi’ cases?

Suppose ‘L’etat c’est moi’ cases reach the Supreme Court – how will the Court rule?

Already people speculate on how the Supreme Court judges might rule. It is taken for granted that the Trump-appointed judges will rule in favor of their leader. It is taken for granted that the Republican-appointed judges also will rule on behalf of THE DONALD…except maybe for the Chief Justice in an otherwise tie. It may well be that the continued existence of the United States as a Constitutional country depends on the continued existence of RBG.

King George III demanded loyalty. So does THE DONALD. King George III demanded loyalty to him as an individual. So does THE DONALD. As we begin the celebration of the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, we have the opportunity not only to remember what happened but to relive it. We know there are many LOYALISTS. We have just seen them in Minnesota and Louisiana. They are united. They are passionate. They are committed. They are dedicated. And just maybe they will demonstrate that Hamilton’s King George III was right.

What Do Seth Rich and the Ukraine Have in Common? Answer: Sean Hannity

A beautiful mind can connect dots that do not even exist (https://i.imgflip.com/2fg4dr.jpg)

Sean Hannity has a beautiful mind. His skill in connecting the dots is unrivaled. If there was a Nobel Prize for connecting the dots, he would be the winner.

Who can forget his performance in the Story of Seth Rich? Night after night, week after week, month after month, duped-by-Russia Hannity would regale his rapt audience with the story of how this murdered individual that no one had ever heard of was the critical lynch-pin to exposing the evil shenanigans of the Democrats and the Deep State to undo the legitimately-elected President.

In his performance, duped-by-Russia Hannity was insistent, consistent, and persistent. In the time Rachel Maddow would have spent on one of her long opening essays before getting to the point, duped-by-Russia Hannity would have delivered his message multiple times. All the pieces fit together. All the dots were connected. Buckle up and hear the truth.

There was only one slight problem with duped-by-Russia Hannity’s performance – there was no truth to it. The unfortunate murder of this individual who happened to have worked for the Democratic Party was one of the chance events that sometimes occur in the big city. It was not part of some Jason-Bourne-007-Jack-Clancy intrigue….unless you wanted it to be.

Russia wanted it to be. Give credit where credit is due. The Russian “KGB” quickly seized on this seeming minor event and made it into a political thriller. According to the “real story,” Seth Rich was on his way to talk to the FBI about corruption by the Clintons when he was gunned down by a squad of assassins working for them. It was right there on the web. You could read it for yourself. The alt-right did. So did Fox. What was the source of the story? The Russian “KGB.”  Fox had been duped.

What are the lessons to be learned from this experience?

1. The Russian “KGB” is very good. It responded very quickly and very decisively to concoct a story and to disseminate it on the web. It “proved” that the alleged Russian collusion was really Democratic Party dirty tricks led by Crooked Hillary. These actions demonstrated a familiarity with the American political arena, the willingness to act in it surreptitiously, and the skill to do so successfully.

2. It also demonstrated a technique that the Russians would use again and again to meddle in American politics. It succeeded in duping Hannity because it gave him exactly what he wanted. The Russians knew their audience. They crafted a story that appealed to the conspiracy people eager for a story that confirmed all there predispositions. The Seth Rich story did exactly that.

So why not use that approach again?

The Russians did with the Steele Dossier. That really had originated as a Democratic-funded initiative to get dirt on the Republican opponent. In effect, the Democratic Party had broadcast exactly what it wanted. The effort made clear it was looking for precisely the kind of information that would undermine the political prospects of the Republican candidate.

Guess what the Democrats got in the Steele Dossier?

The Steele Dossier provided the Democrats with exactly the information they wanted. The Steele Dossier was nothing if not dirt on THE DONALD. If the allegations made in the Steele Dossier were true, they would be more than embarrassing, they might even prove fatal. Now the Democrats had been duped.  How much time was spent on the elusive and illusory meeting in Prague? And what about Carter Page?

The Democrats had been played by the Russian “KGB” just as the alt-right, Fox, and duped-by-Russia Hannity had been. Remember how Democrats were practically foaming at the mouth in anticipation of a great victory by destroying THE DONALD thanks to the Steele Dossier. How did that work out? Not so well for the Democrats. As it turns out, they were just as eager to believe what they wanted to believe as duped-by-Russia Hannity was.

The Russians were not done. Why not try offering dirt to THE DONALD on Crooked Hillary? We do not know what “dirt” the Russian “KGB” had manufactured in this effort. It does not seem to have amounted to much. But the words of the son who is not the sharpest knife in the drawer says it all: “I love it!” Although this particular gambit failed, it highlighted the validity of the Russian effort to manipulate the American election: give the people what they want and they will run with it even when there is no truth to it whatsoever.

The Ukraine is the final example of this approach…at least so far. The Ukraine maneuver suits Putin’s needs. It assigns the blame for the intervention into the American Presidential election to his enemy the Ukrainians. Therefore the sanctions levied against Russia should be removed and Russia should be restored to its rightful place in the world just as his American asset has been trying to do. The Ukrainian ploy solves the problems of both leaders. It legitimizes the election of the current present and gets the Russian leader off the hook. All the problems are due to the Ukrainians. Seth Rich lives. The Steele Dossier is accurate. The Americans have been played.

Putin was a former KGB agent. How long do you think it took him size up THE DONALD? How long did it take the alpha male to recognize that the immature-child American President was a submissive, simpleminded, ignoramus? If your answer was more than a nano-nano second, then you are not fit to write about American politics and should never be invited as a talking head on a TV or radio show.  Putin does not watch Fox, he dupes Fox. He quickly realized that the weak, superficial, narcissist was a person he could manipulate. Russia did not intervene in the American election, it was the Ukraine.

There are consequences to being the victim of the Putin’s ploys. For Fox, it is being sued by the Rich family. For the Democrats, it was following a bogus trail and undermining the Mueller report. For THE DONALD it was being impeached and watching his whole stack of lies being undone. The drones used to bomb the Saudi oilfields did not cost much. Neither did Russia have to spend much to totally disrupt the American political process. Who knew it would be that easy?

Will Mike Pence Become a Profile in Courage?

Mike Pence Is No Captain Merik in Star Trek “Bread and Circuses" (William Smithers)

To become a profile in courage is not easy. First there needs to be a situation where there is a need for someone to be a profile in courage. Second, one of the people in that situation then needs to rise to the occasion. One cannot always know when such a situation will arise. Typically we think of military figures and athletes in all-or-nothing or do-or-die moment, but sometimes such opportunities sneak up on when you least expect it. Sometimes it is the result of your own action which got you into the mess in the first place.

Since everything you need to know about life you can learn from Star Trek, let us examine what another Mike Pence experienced. The show is “Bread and Circuses” which aired on March 15, 1968. In that show, Captain Merik and his crew from another spaceship are missing. The Starship Enterprise crew locates the crew on a planet governed by a 1960s version of the Roman Empire. It is a world where the Empire did not fall but continued to exist for another two millennia.

On the planet, Captain Merik sells his soul to the Roman Emperor, to Caesar and not to Christ. It is not an exact match to V.P. Mike selling his soul to his Lord and Savior, the chosen one, blessed be his name, but it is close enough.  Pence’s performance in the Cabinet meeting where he thanked God for enabling him to share the same space-time continuum as The Donald will forever define him. In its own way, it is even more pathetic than Captain Merik’s abject submission in the TV show.

 Be that as it may, both Mike and Merik have violated their oath. Merik has violated the Prime Directive by interfering in the planet and sharing knowledge of the existence of the Federation of Planets along with the awareness of a superior technology to that a 1960s country possessed. Vice President Brown Nose has been submissive in his behavior but whether he has crossed the line or not is another issue…until the current scandal

Now he faces a moment of truth. He was present during the violation of the Constitution and the cover-up. What will he do? He was part of it. Will he tell the truth? He has taken an oath to uphold the Constitution. He knows that people around him like the President of the United States, the Secretary of State, and the Attorney General have no intention of keeping that oath. When Pompeo decided to tell the truth about his presence during the Ukrainian telephone call, it was not because of his pangs of conscience for not telling truth before. It was because he realized that multiple people in the State Department were going to tell the truth. They were going to expose that he had not. So Pompeo does not qualify as a profile in country.

The less said about Bill Barred-for-Life the better.

What about Pence? What will he do? In the Star Trek episode, Merik redeems himself. In the moment of truth, Merik rescues Kirk and Co. enabling them to beam back to the Starship Enterprise and escape the clutches of the imperial order. He pays for that decision with his life. Sometimes being a profile in courage can be fatal. Just because you demonstrate the right stuff to go into the arena does not mean you will survive the ordeal and emerge a victor. In the TV show, Merik did not.

What about Pence? In the early months of this administration there was a lot of silly talk about the 25h Amendment. Somehow V.P Brown Nose was going to lead a cabinet coup against the mentally impaired immature child President and restore decency to the Oval Office. The idea that Pence would rise to the occasion was so absurd as to be completely laughable. None-the-less, adult human beings even with college educations, would discuss this option as if it were a real possibility.

This time the stakes are different. This time the impeachment drive is moving full speed ahead. This time people with integrity are eager to testify and tell the truth. This time each passing day reveals another facet of the violation and cover-up. Should he just stand on the sidelines, watch it happen, and be indicted? The DOJ rules do not apply to the positions of the other co-conspirators. Pompeo and Barr are not immune, they are not exempt, they are not above the law. Neither is the Vice President. He may even catch on to the fact that loyalty is a one-way street with this narcissistic President. You owe him loyalty, he owes you nothing.

What will Mike Pence do? He prides himself on his Christian values. Will he tell the truth? He prides himself on never dining alone with a woman who is not his wife. Will he tell the truth? He prides himself on his integrity. Will he tell the truth? He thinks he is part of God’s plan. Will he tell the truth?

No. Even his staff knows the truth does not register with him.

He will not rise to the occasion.

He will not be a profile in courage.

He never would have been picked for the position of Vice President if he was.