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The Wicked Bible: To Testify or NOT to Testify, That Is the Question

Title page of Barker and Lucas's 1631 Holy Bible, known as the "Wicked Bible" https://en.wikipedia.org

The Wicked Bible was NOT published with the intention of becoming the Wicked Bible. When it was published by the royal printers in 1631, it simply was as another edition of the recently authorized King James Bible. And so it was except for one small omission – the word NOT did not appear in the printed version of the Book of Exodus, chapter 20, verse 14. As a result the commandment shifted in meaning from:

Thou shalt NOT commit adultery

to

Thou shalt commit adultery.

Actually, as we now know, these supposed commandments of the Lord were not direct orders to the Israelite people. They were only expressions of opinion by a deity partaking of his right to freedom of speech. One of the great fallacies of the religions of the book is the interpretation of these words as commandments rather than personal opinions.

Be that as it may, once the error of omission in the printing of the Bible was discovered, the trump hit the fan. The religious authorities were NOT pleased with this publication. They acted with great vigor to confiscate all the printed copies and to destroy them.

As a result very few copies have survived. There are only two such copies in the United States. One belongs to a family in Arkansas and the other to a family in Queens. By coincidence both families produced presidents of the United States. What are the odds? It’s a miracle!

When the histories of the baby-boomer presidencies are written, it will be noted that the era was bracketed by presidents who subscribed to the tenets of the Wicked Bible in contrast to the Bush-Bama presidents in-between who owned traditional bibles.

Understanding the error in the use or absence of the word NOT helps in understanding our president. For example

I am a very stable genius

becomes

I am not a very stable genius.

I am the smartest person in the room = I am not the smartest person in the room.
My IQ is higher = My IQ is not higher

And so on.

The key usage occurred in the taking the oath of office as president to defend, protect, and secure the United States from foreign enemies. In that situation as with his fidelity vow to his trophy wife, “I do” means “I do not” and he has been faithful to the corrected version in both instances.

Following up on the previous post on critical thinking skills, consider the following example a teacher could present in the classroom in an American History class.

Russia did interfere in the election of 2016.
Russia did NOT interfere in the election of 2016.

The teacher would then ask the students, how many people made these two statements? The students versed in the debates of Hamilton/Jefferson, Clay/Calhoun/Webster, and Lincoln/Douglas, naturally would be inclined to answer “two people.” The more perceptive students might realize that the teacher has asked a trick question and even without being able to identify the speaker answer “one person.”

At this point it is well-known that our president can NOT tell the truth except by accident. The Washington Post has carved out an identify for itself by tracking the number of trumps he has told as president – over 3000 and counting now at a rate 7.5/day.

While it is fun to make fun of our president who can NOT tell the truth, that action misses the point. Let’s NOT confuse ignorance with dishonesty. The more important consideration is that he is quite capable to taking opposite points of view on the same issue. For example:

The Attorney General should shut down the rigged witch hunt of angry Democrats led by a Republican with a grudge against me

or

The Special Counsel should investigate the real collusion with Russia by Crooked Hillary and the Democrats.

Exactly how both statements simultaneously could be true or false is a conundrum NOT easily resolved.

Actually, it is, once you realize that you are dealing with a child and that he is NOT an adult. The Wicked Bible and the correct versions, all have a story set in the Garden of Eden. One of the props in the story is the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Less well-known is the biblical age at which a person is expected to have the mental necessities to differentiate between good and evil. In other words, the ancient Israelites recognized that one should NOT judge a child by adult standards. It is not fair to apply adult rules to someone incapable of understanding them as an adult. The cutoff point for ancient Israel was 20 years, at that point a person could be held accountable under adult standards.

Everybody knows our president is a(n immature) child. We have seen baby blimp Donny. We have read his hissy fit tweets. We have heard his incoherent baby talk speeches and interviews (maybe the playmate and the adult film start were giving him speech lessons on how to sound adult and he did NOT have sex with them). Despite this knowledge, people, including those who open and read these posts, continue to evaluate his actions and decisions as if he were an adult.

Now think of him as an immature child. He does NOT understand adult concepts like oath of office, separation of duties, checks and balances, management, or fascism. He manages by chaos NOT because of his education at the Wharton School of Business but because his mind only functions at that level. When he is confronted by a situation he needs to escape, honesty and dishonesty are irrelevant. His only consideration is the exact same as a child caught doing something he should NOT do. What do I need to do right now to get of out this situation? If it feels good at the moment to say, “Oh, yeah, oh, yeah, what about investigating Democratic collusion” by the very person he wants to fire but can NOT, he will say that. He is not conflicted by such opposite and contrary expressions the way an adult would be conflicted. That’s the advantage of being an immature child living for the moment.

The question asked at a press conference, “Is the President a liar” goes to the heart of the problem of the current press coverage. It is a perfectly valid question for an adult but it is NOT a valid question for an immature child. Remember when he referred everything to Michael Cohen and what Michael Cohen had done on his own. Remember how Michael Cohen was a good guy. Why did he go on record with words that would come back to haunt him? He could NOT think ahead to the consequences. Why did he tweet that the Attorney General should shut down the Special Counsel at the exact moment that the Special Counsel is investigating his tweets for obstruction on shutting down the Special Counsel? He did NOT think of the consequences. Is NOT that what teenagers always say when confronted with the consequences of an action taken for the moment: I did NOT think of that. Of course you did NOT think about consequences, you are a teenager. You are in the time of life when you will make more bad decisions than at any other time of your life. How would you like to be president now?

Stop pretending he is an adult. He is NOT. If you have to ask questions at the press conference, then ask a two-part one:

Is NOT it true that the President said this….?
Is NOT it true that the President said the opposite of this….?

and leave it at that.

Strangely enough, all this means he is not even old enough to realize why he should NOT talk to the Special Counsel. The immature child genuinely thinks he can talk his way out any mess just as he has been doing his whole life. He does NOT understand what it means to face well-researched, well-organized, disciplined adults instead of Fox and Friends or a professional wrestling arena audience. His lawyers do but they can no more control him than John Kelly could. Here’s where his failure to learn from his fiascoes with Kim Jong-un and Putin can hurt him.

Fox & Friends and the Unpresidential Library

Fox and Friends Hosts Brian Kilmeade, Ainsley Earhardt, and Steve Doocy

Sometimes a president is remembered for fireside chats. Sometimes a president is remembered for the Gettysburg Address. And sometimes a president is remembered for hissy-fit tweets and Fox & Friends. In the Unpresidential Library there definitely will be an area set aside for Fox & Friends. When historians, citizens, and visitors seek to experience and understand our immature child president, his devotion to Fox & Friends is sure to serve as an important part of that quest.

Let’s examine how people in the decades and centuries to come will experience this phenomenon when visiting the Unpresidential Library.

1. Fox & Friends versus National Security

2 Samuel 11:1 In the spring of the year, the time when kings go forth to battle, David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they ravaged the Ammonites, and besieged Rabbah. But David remained at Jerusalem. 2 It happened, late one afternoon, when David arose from his couch and was walking upon the roof of the king’s house, that he saw from the roof a woman bathing; and the woman was very beautiful.

Once upon a time, when the American population was biblically literate, people would have been familiar with the story of David and Bathsheba. But sometimes now with all the fuss on their relationship, the critical opening sentence may be overlooked. According to the verse, it was the time of the year when kings go to war. Israel was at war. The king was not. He remained home sleeping late while others fought. In other words, the commander in chief was negligent in his duties and responsibilities. The author is tipping us off in the first line that no good is going to come of this and that is what happens.

The tour guide at the Unpresidential Library will point out to visitors that while the president was watching/speaking on Fox & Friends, it was the time of the daily national security briefing. In other words to rephrase the biblical verse, “in the morning of the day, the time when presidents attend the daily national security briefing, the president remained in his bedroom watching Fox & Friends on TV.” Even before the contents of the 30 minute tirade are presented, the astute visitor will already know then that something is wrong, that this president is not doing what his predecessors and successors did. Or to put it slightly differently, for this narcissistic president, his political security and vanity trumped We the People’s national security.

2. The Playmate, the Porn Performer, and the President: Who Is More Intelligent?

Next, the tour guide will engage in some compare and contrast. At roughly the same time and for the same amount of time (30 minutes excluding commercials), three individuals participated in televised exchanges or interviews. The three were a Playmate, a term which may require explanation to the visitors to the Unpresidential Library, a porn performer, a term which probably will not require explanation except perhaps to children, and a president. As a result, there is an excellent opportunity for visitors to compare and contrast the three discourses and to gauge the intelligence of each.

Key characteristics for analysis will be:

– the ability to communicate using a complete sentence

– the ability to communicate in consecutive sentences

– the ability to have a start and end to one’s discourse

– the preferences for run-on phrases

– repeating oneself

– babbling.

Visitors will be asked to rate the performance of the three speakers. The odds the Playmate and the porn performer will trump the president in intelligence and communication.

3. The Electoral College versus the Popular Vote

“They also like to always talk about Electoral College. Well, it’s an election based on the Electoral College. I would rather have a popular election but it’s a totally different campaign.”

 “The Electoral College is set up perfectly for the Democrats and this was an absolute total beating in the Electoral College.”

One of the topics of the tirade was the 2016 presidential election. The insecure immature child still needs to bring up his unexpected victory to reassure himself. He is correct to note that the chattering class, the political pundits, and elitists did not see a way for him to reach 270 electoral votes. He is correct to note that he defied the odds with his unexpected electoral victory.  He also is correct to note that victory under the rules was based on electoral vote count and not the popular vote. He claims he geared his campaign to the rules of the competition. However, one wonders exactly what he would have done differently if popular vote was the key – spent more time in California?

What is most surprising is what he did not say. He did not claim that he won the popular vote as well as he electoral vote. He did not claim that 3 million or 5 million or whatever number he needed to win the popular vote voted illegally and all for his opponent. There was no mention of the commission he created to investigate the voting violations and its proof positive documentation of widespread abuse beyond the confines of his mind and on the Bull Trump network. One wonders why he passed up this opportunity to boast both of his huge popular and electoral victory.

4. Who Runs the 100 Yard Dash Anymore?

During the course of his discussion about his victory in the 2016 presidential election, he contrasted the different strategies using sports metaphors. The two he chose were the 100 yard dash and the one mile run. He correctly notes the differences between a sprint and a longer run. What is interesting is that neither of those two races is an Olympic event anymore and they rarely are run either especially at the international level. They were once but not now.

Here the guide in the Unpresidential Library will explain to the visitors that the worldview of the immature child president was set in his childhood and early years. When he was growing up the 100 yard dash and one mile run were big events. Breaking the 10-second and 4-minute barriers were newsworthy items. It appears that those events were imprinted in his mind never to be replaced by the 100 and 1500 meter runs today. So it’s not that he wants to return to the 50’s but that his mind still is in the 50’s.

Consider this example as an indication that he is living in the past and hasn’t retained new information (unless it directly relates to him):

He said “I was elected to represent the citizens of Pittsburgh, not Paris” in explaining why he withdrew from the Paris treaty. He was and perhaps still is that not aware that he was not elected by the citizens of Pittsburgh although he was correct that as President he does represent them in the international arena. But it appears that when he thinks of Pittsburgh he is thinking of a manly city doing manly things like making steel the way it did when he was growing up.

When he looks at the world today it is through the prism of the world he knew as a child. He doesn’t know that George Bush used the phrase “Mission Accomplished.”  It just seemed like a good phrase and it is. Looking for historical connections to his utterances is a fool’s errand since he has no historical consciousness.

According to the tirade, he does now know that Lincoln was a Republican. This represents new knowledge, something he did not know until recently. He tried to use that knowledge to explain why blacks should vote Republican. He couldn’t remember the term Emancipation Proclamation, only that Lincoln did something that was good for the former slaves. And then they stopped voting Republican. He expressed no understanding of why this happened. He has no awareness what happened during the Depression and the connection between blacks and FDR. He has no awareness that after the Civil Rights Act of 1965, Confederates migrated from the Democratic Party to the Republican Party. He has no awareness that his support for the suppression of the votes by illegal aliens in practice has been an effort to suppress the votes of black citizens as well (because he genuinely lacks the mental necessities to make the connection between his actions against illegal aliens and legal citizens).

5. The 2018 Elections

The upcoming elections weren’t a topic of discussion but one can easily see why he is so confident regardless of the political prognostications by the same people who were wrong in 2016. After all, he stated on Fox and Friends that he has done an A+ job during his first year in office despite the witch hunt cloud from the Russian-colluding Democrats. He has accomplished more than any other president. And when it comes to the American voters, “I’ve taught them its fake news.” So now the American people know the truth. Now the American people know to ignore CNN, MSNBC, ABC, CBS, NBC, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. Once again the talking heads will be wrong. Once again the real American voters will be heard. Once again he will triumph. You heard it here on Fox News & Friends.

Clearly a talk for the ages.

What else should go in the Unpresidential Library and where should it be built?

Is Donald Trump Our Rehoboam? – A Bible Penis Story

“The body of Christ is divided and not only are they divided, they are torn and their minds are in a state of confusion. Because of the confusion they will elect a madman whose heart is full of lies and unstable – a man of deception who speaks those words that sound as if truth, but underneath it is lies to gain the people’s trust and they will fall for it." T. D. Hale prophecy 2/1/16 (http://whygodreallyexists.com/archives/election-2016-prophecies-which-are-correct-the-spirit-of-rehoboam-rested-on-the-president-td-hale)

What biblical character most resembles our President? Putting aside the answers of Mike Pence and the evangelicals, what biblical figure most closely matches Donald Trump? I confess that there does not seem to be a perfect match so any response would be subject to question.

To begin with, there aren’t many children characters in the Bible. There are infant stories, most famously the birth stories of Moses and Jesus, but those figures are too young to be considered.

There are some “laddie” stories, young males on the cups of adulthood. For example the young son Joseph was 17 years old when he went he went to shepherd with his older brothers. Think of him as a high school senior first venturing into adulthood. Similarly the young son David was disdained for being a mere “youth” by the Philistines after he leaves home with provisions for his older brothers who are in Saul’s army. The coming of age ceremony for that mere youth proves quite successful as he defeats not simply a lion or a bear in a ritual but the foremost Philistine warrior. By contrast our multi-deferment President can fake it in a scripted professional wrestling arena but lacks the right stuff to go into the arena in the real world. The profile of no courage fires people via tweets and through intermediaries and not manno-à-manno.

Finding a figure in-between the examples of the infants Moses and Jesus and about-to-be adults Joseph and David isn’t easy. Perhaps the best example is Samuel. After his birth story and he is weaned, the child is brought to the priest Eli at Shiloh where the Ark of the Lord was kept. Samuel then served as, yes, an apprentice, being groomed to takeover when the elder priest retired or died. Eli had two sons of his own. They were described as worthless men who had no regard for the Lord and who cheated the people and Lord when the people brought sacrifices to Shiloh. These nothingburgers were con artists and were held accountable for their actions. Both died in battle on the same day, the day the Ark of the Lord was captured by the Philistines. When Eli heard the news, the shock killed him and then Samuel stepped up to be the priest.

Despite the age similarities, the match between Samuel and The Donald is not a good fit. Samuel is not a thin-skinned narcissist. Samuel is not lacking in sympathy and empathy. Samuel is not lacking in core values, the law actually is important to him. Samuel is not a coward. Samuel even becomes a warrior in his own right. And he certainly is not immature.

This leads me to Rehoboam, the would-be king of all Israel who ends up the king of Judah alone. Rehoboam is the son of Solomon, a builder of the temple and other structures. Rehoboam is to the manor born who would have failed on his own just as THE DONALD was a four-time loser who needed to be bailed out by mob money. Rehoboam was a person of no empathy or sympathy but there is no indication that he was immature…just a spoiled princeling hanging out with his fellow spoiled sons of Solomon’s cronies.

After Solomon died, the tensions in the kingdom came to a head fairly quickly. The people of all Israel asked Rehoboam, who needed their consent to become king, if he would lighten their load. Rehoboam then turned to people who had advised his father as king:

Then King Rehoboam took counsel with the old men, who had stood before Solomon his father while he was yet alive, saying, “How do you advise me to answer this people?” (1 Kings 12:6)

The adults in his administration, drawing on their experience that the newcomer lacked, counseled wisely:

And they said to him, “If you will be a servant to this people today and serve them, and speak good words to them when you answer them, then they will be your servants forever.” (1 Kings 12:7)

Rehoboam never claimed to be a very stable genius or to be the smartest person in the room but he certainly did not want to appear to be the loser who succumbed to the demands of the people. Effectively he cleaned house of the adults so he could act on the basis of his self-centered wishes. He turned to people just like himself.

But he forsook the counsel which the old men gave him, and took counsel with the young men who had grown up with him and stood before him.  And he said to them, “What do you advise that we answer this people who have said to me, `Lighten the yoke that your father put upon us’?” And the young men who had grown up with him said to him, “Thus shall you speak to this people who said to you, `Your father made our yoke heavy, but do you lighten it for us’; thus shall you say to them, `My little finger is thicker than my father’s loins. And now, whereas my father laid upon you a heavy yoke, I will add to your yoke. My father chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.'” (I Kings 12:8-11)

“Finger” in biblical terms serves as a euphemism just as “hands” did during the last Republican presidential primary. Rehoboam boasts about his penis size, rejects the advice of the adults, and follows the advice of the other young men who share his way of life and urge him to play king without having the wisdom to recognize the consequences in the real world.

There were consequences to following the advice of his fellow princelings. The people Israel responded by telling Rehoboam where to go: back to Jerusalem where the rich people lived. They withdrew from the kingdom Rehoboam’s grandfather David had created and created a new kingdom of Israel. When Rehoboam sent his taskmaster to Israel to assert control over the people Israel, they stoned him to death. Rehoboam remained king of a shrunken kingdom. According to Steven Spielberg among others, Rehoboam was king in Jerusalem when Pharaoh Sheshonq invaded and captured the Ark of Lord. I think it is safe to say that Rehoboam was a loser.

The situation today is not quite as stark or clearcut as in ancient Israel. There is no doubt that our immature child president will clean house of the adults who sought to keep in check. There is no doubt that he will not comply with the law if subpoenaed to testify or with a court-order to if it comes to that. Instead he will dismiss the people who challenge him and ignore them if he can’t. Cheered on by Sean Hannity, Jeanine Pirro, and Lou Dobbs, he will shut down the investigation of his ties to the Russians. The Weeny party is thoroughly emasculated except for some female Senators and retiring losers. It is not the party of Abraham Lincoln. It is not the party of Teddy Roosevelt. It is not the party of Dwight Eisenhower. It is not the party of Ronald Reagan. Do you really think THE DONALD has anything to fear from crossing an imaginary red line no matter what Lindsay Graham says? While he will not go as far as Putin has in England to dispatch his foes, he will defy any attempt to hold him accountable under the law. The witch hunt is bogus and he has no obligation to obey the people of the deep state who were out get him from day one even lifelong Republicans like Mueller.

His actions will lead to the division of the country but not in the way of ancient Israel or the United States did into the Union and the Confederacy during our last Civil War. The irony is that just as Yale has succeeded in removing the name of John C. Calhoun from a building, California has embraced nullification. After the Friday night firing, the battlelines have been drawn. The boundaries will not be as geographically clear as in the Civil War. But even then there were Unionists in the Confederacy as exemplified by the creation of the state of West Virginia. And there were plenty of pro-slave advocates in the north, Lincoln didn’t win in a landslide.

The resistance in this war is likely to be less violent where the courts are the first field of battle and civil disobedience is the second. People will simply just refuse to comply with the dictates of the President who is a law unto himself. At first the defiance may be nullification at the state, city, and municipal level. But at some point it may extend to the federal bureaucracy itself particularly as it becomes clearer that Putin’s Poodle’s mantra is “We’re number two.” The battle between Make America Great Again and Make America Grown-up Again is engaged. Exactly how will it be fought? Who will win? What will our Rehoboam do?

St. Valentine’s Day Massacre to the Titanic: The White House Ship of State (Part I)

Adult: It's about time you learn the universe doesn't revolve around you. Teenager: Maybe YOUR universe. Zits by Jerry Scott and Jim Borgman

When the President of the United States learned of Japan’s attack on America on December 7 did he exult or strike back?

When the President of the United States learned of Al Qaeda’s attack on America on 9/11 did he exult or strike back?

When the President of the United States learned in 2018 of Russia’s attack on America from 2014 to 2016 did he exult or strike back?

To even ask these questions serves notice of the perilous world in which we live. For the first time in the history of the United States, the President of the United States declines to fulfill the constitutional responsibility to be commander in chief, the one job title/description actually in the Constitution.

To some extent on a human level, it is reasonable to understand why the target of the Mueller investigation would breathe a sigh of relief when the Russian indictments did not include him or his staff and went back to 2014. Indeed the Bull Trump network shared in this exultation declaring it a day of victory and vindication for the President.

To be fair, the Mueller indictments reflect no loss of American life, occurred years ago, and were well known to the American intelligence community, Facebook, and Twitter, and the American public excluding Republicans. In this context there was no sense of urgency as there was on 12/7 and 9/11. So for a first reaction, the sense of triumph is understandable.

What about the second reaction?

Did it occur to him or the Bull Trump network that there might be a second and equally exhaustive report on the hacking of the DNC?

Did it occur to him or the Bull Trump network that there might be an equally exhaustive report of money laundering for the Russian mob in violation of U.S. law and sanctions?

Did it occur to him or the Bull Trump network that there might be an equally exhaustive report and detailed timeline of the contacts with Russia during the campaign?

Did it occur to him or the Bull Trump network that there might be an equally exhaustive report of the obstruction efforts to prevent the documentation of the Russian violation of America?

Exactly what to Devin Nunes, Jeannine Pirro, and Sean Hannity have to celebrate about their efforts to prevent Mueller from exposing the Russian violation of America? The new indictments of Manafort and the guilty plea of a lawyer following Gates’s cooperation hints at the indictments to come given the still-secret information Mueller has. The lawyers who don’t want their president client to testify because he cannot tell the truth undoubtedly realize how much greater the risk is now. Don’t they realize that these indictments are the beginning and not the end? It’s not going to be over soon.

As it turns out there was a second reaction and it was about the legitimacy of the 2016 election. Suddenly the Huckabee Huckster spewed forth the bull trump that of course the President knew and said so all along that the Russians had meddled in the election. Now the line was such meddling hadn’t made a difference (a claim difficult to prove or disprove) and that it was all Obama’s fault since the violation of America began under his watch and he did nothing. Imagine what the Bull Trump network would have said in 2016, if the administration then had announced that Russia was meddling in the election to support Trump!

So maybe the third reaction would be about fulfilling his responsibilities as commander in chief to defend America from outside attack and to attack the attackers. The idea that this third reaction would occur to him is so preposterous and so silly that it is embarrassing that anyone would take it seriously and even ask the Huckabee Huckster about it. Let’s look at the record.

First, any time Putin wants to end this presidency he can do so. He knows the hidden tax returns reveal ties to the Russian mob. He knows that the dossier is true or at least those portions which are. He knows what contacts were made during the campaign and probably could produce reports documenting them if he wanted to. He has the means to destroy the current American president if he chooses to do so.

Having said that, he has no reason to want to at this point in time. His immediate goal is the removal of sanctions. The American President has been a good little boy and not applied the most recent set of sanctions authorized by Congress. The American President has been a good little boy and not called for any additional actions to be taken against Russia for violating America. So why remove him? Who would do a better job of protecting Russia than the current good little boy?

Second, people have forgotten that oaths have no meaning to him. As I previously wrote concepts like separation of powers and oaths to the Constitution are adult concepts beyond the mental necessities of our immature child president. His mind genuinely does not function on that level. He may say the words but they cannot sink because his brain never reached the state of development where he can absorb adult ideas. The question he asks is are you loyal to him? The question he asks is who is his Roy Cohn? He never acknowledges anyone else’s oath to the Constitution, loyalty to We the People, or professionalism so why should it be any different when it comes to him? The oath he took at inauguration was simply lines from a script to be performed; they have nothing to do with how he thinks or operates. The only way he can act to defend America is if he thought not acting would make him a loser.

Although I can’t prove this, my first reaction to the idea of his running for president, was that it was just a stunt. There were two things I thought he had no interest in, couldn’t do, and would not want to do. The first was that he could never be America’s Comforter in Chief. The thin-skinned narcissist was incapable of feeling yet alone expressing the sympathy and empathy necessary for the discharge of this duty. I think it is safe to say that events have proved this prediction true.

The second was that he could not start every morning with a security briefing. It would make no sense to him. He didn’t know where the places were. He didn’t know who the people were. He didn’t know what the issues were? And if he didn’t have resort there, why should he care? Furthermore, during the daily briefing he would be in a room full of people who knew their stuff. How long before they caught on that he was ignorant moron with nothing constructive to contribute? You can fake it in the professional wrestling arena where you have the right to your own facts; that won’t work in the briefing room. I acknowledge that at the time when these thoughts first occurred me I didn’t know that he couldn’t read more than a page. I think it is safe to say that events have proved this prediction true.

Tom Friedman is exactly right to declare that our democracy is in danger but let’s not get carried away. We have seen so many James Bond movies showcasing the vaunted power of Spectre/KGB that we may think it is real. While we should resist and respond to the Russian violation of America, we should not exaggerate its effectiveness. We should not be building Putin up, we have a President who does that!

We know that our President will never act directly against Putin. He will be as dismissive of Russia’s violation of America as he was of Putin’s assassination of political opponents – after all we kill people, too. We meddle too.  It’s no secret that the Republican Party is no longer the party of Lincoln. Now it would seem it is no longer the party of Reagan either. What is the political downside for the failure of the American President to be Commander in Chief? Do the American people really want him to act against Russia? Does his base want him to act against Russia? Who knew that all those white males shouting USA! USA! USA! We’re Number 1. We’re Number 1! We’re Number 1! actually have no objection to being violated by Putin?

False Prophets: A Winter Solstice Reflection

Another Great Disappointment (writeonnewjersey.com)

Is there a difference between false prophets who know they are false prophets and false prophets who wrongly believe their own prophecies? Just because a person is wrong doesn’t mean they intended to deceive you. How many predictions that the world is coming to an end have proven true so far? With these thoughts in mind, let us look back on a memorable experience in American Presidential politics that is not yet over.

To begin with Peter Beinart reported in the January/February, 2016, issue of The Atlantic:

According to Microsoft’s betting market, Predictwise, Democrats have close to a 6o percent chance of holding the White House in 2016. That’s not because Hillary Clinton, whom the Democrats will likely nominate, is an exceptionally strong candidate. It’s because the Republicans may nominate an exceptionally weak one.

 According to Predictwise, in early November Marco Rubio―widely considered the GOP’s strongest general-election candidate―had a 45 percent chance of winning his party’s nomination. But according to Predictwise, there was also a 37 percent chance that Donald Trump, Ben Carson, or Ted Cruz would win the nomination. And if any of them did, Clinton’s election would be all but assured.   

Remember those days? One day, the received wisdom you dispense today will seem just as absurd.

When it comes to false prophets, I would like to devote the remainder of this post to a false prophet of the highest order of the 2016 presidential election. I am referring to Feinman, not Peter Feinman (me) but Ronald Feinman (no relation). I confess his last name is partially what drew me to his posts and also that they have been a never ending source of both amusement and insight.

I do not intend to review all Feinman’s posts. Some posts reveal a persistent disconnect with the reality of the American people and therefore with American politics today while at the same time concocting a wishful-thinking future that may yet come true. Ironically, he starts off fairly competently and reasonably.

No Way Will Either Trump or Sanders Be Elected President* (2/12/16)

The * is the key that the title doesn’t mean what you think it means. To the contrary, he itemizes eleven examples in American presidential elections where the general refrain of “no way” that type of person could be elected turned out to be exactly wrong. Feinman then concludes the post with:

These eleven “no way” cases should convince anyone that there is “no way” to say that Donald Trump or Bernie Sanders can be dismissed as possible Presidents, based on public opinion polls and large crowds that they have drawn to their public appearances.

We may be on our way to the 12th “no way” Presidency in the past century. Predicting Presidential elections is a fun game, but also excludes the human factor, that life is uncertain, the future is uncertain, and only after it is all over, can we analyze and understand the process by which we will have elected our 45th President of the United States.

As it turns out, Feinman had gleaned the truth. But would he take his own advice about the importance of the human factor? Did he later predict the “no way, no how, what, are you kidding me?” candidate of 2016 would win?

Flashing forward to September 4, 2016, Feinman then raised an issue that continues to haunt him and others to this very day.

The Constitutional Crisis We’d Face If Donald Trump Actually Became President

Feinman sought to comfort those anguished Americans contemplating the unthinkable.

The only solace sane Americans have had is the assumption that Donald Trump will NOT win the Presidency, and early public opinion polls make it seem likely that he has little to no chance to be elected President. [bold added]

But one can never be sure how political events will transpire over the next two months until November, and if something untoward on a massive level were to occur, all bets are off, and the supposed “impossible” could occur. So therefore, attention needs to be paid to the idea that we COULD have a President Donald Trump, and to plan for and wonder what that would be like, and it is not a pretty picture that can be painted about the next four years under a President Trump.

A loyal Democrat might conclude than Feinman had predicted the consequences of an October 27 event when Comey sabotaged the election of the Democrat. Alternate facts aren’t limited to Republicans and it can be fascinating to observe how traumatized people who experienced “the Great Disappointment” connect the dots to avoid facing the truth.

So while it can’t happen, maybe we should prepare just in case disaster strikes. Feinman’s predictions seem quite reasonable.

It is hard not to believe that a President Trump in office would be a constant constitutional crisis, unmatched since the Civil War, and maybe even possibly worse than that terrible event’s impact on the nation….

So one can project that even with a Republican Congress, there would be no or little cooperation with party leaders and that he would have cabinet members and advisers only willing to accede to his demands and wishes, and would ignore anyone who challenged his beliefs and views on every subject….

His proposed mass deportation of millions of undocumented immigrants and the building of a Mexico Wall would create an environment inciting massive reaction and social uprisings and bloodshed.

So we might have a constitutional crisis requiring the impeachment process. Probably, support for the effort would come from both major parties, but given the slow workings of an impeachment inquiry, we would be endangered in the interim by a beleaguered President Trump…. Wisdom and courage might be needed in the next few years, if somehow, Donald Trump becomes the 45th President of the United States.

At this point just months before the election, Feinman still sees the Republican election as farfetched but he has sketched out some scenarios if the impossible occurs. He sees impeachment in the future if the “no way he can win” candidate did in fact win.

Feinman’s hyperbole notwithstanding, the possibility of a constitutional crisis still seems feasible. However his portrait of Republican Congressional leaders not cooperating with him and instead voting to impeach him seems like fantasy, a wishful thinking expression of a misguided guided faith in the American political system. By contrast, this Feinman [me] predicts that the one and only way there could be an impeachment is if Democrats controlled the House of Representatives. It doesn’t matter what the “no way” candidate did or what he does as President, my prediction is that Republicans will not vote to impeach him no matter what, a subject to be pursued in the following post once Feinman’s election prophesies are disposed of and we turn to his impeachment prophesies. Still it is interesting to note that the other Feinman has raised the issue of impeachment months before the election.

As we moved into October, 2016, Feinman seemed quite sure that the unthinkable could not possibly occur.

It’s Possible Donald Trump Could Win a Smaller Percentage of the Popular Vote than Any Other Major Presidential Candidate

Now Feinman throws caution to the wind.

Donald Trump may be on his way to one of the worst popular vote percentage losses in all of Presidential election history — and this was true even before the videotape surfaced showing his vile comments about women. It is probably [sic] that he will win about 20 states at least, and will have an electoral vote total in triple digits, but his percentage of the total popular vote could rival the worst examples in American history, a total of nine Presidential losers since the Civil War who had less than 40 percent of the popular vote.

In this prognostication, Feinman provides a case study into social calculus. In mathematical calculus, one calculates the derivative (or right angle) at a given point on a line (slope). But just as in skiing, the slope varies requiring an adjustment in the right angle or the skier will fall. So even if one is right, the validity of the calculation may be ephemeral as time marches on. Feinman has calculated the voting results based on a particular point in time, the public disclosure that the immature child candidate functioned as a 7th-grader with his locker room banter. We will never know what the vote would have been if the election had been the next day when even leading Republicans were calling for their flawed candidate to step down. But keep in mind, Feinman was predicting a blowout loss even before the videotape was revealed. He concludes the post with:

Donald Trump could well end up in the company of these gentleman and end up the tenth nominee [of a national party] to score less than 40 percent of the national popular vote. We shall know very soon whether this is the case.

On the eve of the election, Feinman is in exulted prophet mode. His admonition about the human factor and uncertainty has been discarded.  Now he is completely out of touch with what is actually happening in the real world even as he confidently asserts what will happen. His post on November 4,

 Who Will Win?

leaves no doubt. Feinman cites his previous accuracy as a prophet in the elections of 2008 and 2012. He then presents his prediction for the current cycle.

This author’s projection has certainly changed as a result of events and controversies, and the growing evidence that Hillary Clinton should do better than originally predicted in May [bold added].

New England – Democratic sweep

MidAtlantic – Democratic sweep again despite Pennsylvania supposedly being in play

South – Democratic wins in Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia

Midwest/Great Plains – Democratic wins again in Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin

Mountain West – Democratic win in Arizona

Pacific Coast – Democratic sweep

He was wrong about so many states that it should be embarrassing. He pretty much got everything wrong. I suspect his predictions or close to them were shared by many experts and contributed to the shocking moment of truth so many believers confronted as they were on the verge of celebrating only to be thrust into the abyss instead. This disconnect with the facts on the ground became readily apparent when Feinman’s Electoral College predictions are compared to the real world.

The final predicted Electoral College is 352-186, with 27 states for Hillary Clinton plus one electoral vote from Nebraska, and 23 states and one electoral vote from Maine for Donald Trump. In a few days, we shall see how accurate my forecast is. [Bold not added!]

How would you characterize a prophesy that was off by 120 Electoral College votes?

Feinman predicted a popular vote of 49% for the Democrat which turned out to be about right, 44% for the Republican which under changed the actual results, and with the rest split among third-party candidates which overstated the actual results. Overall, Feinman predicted the Democrats would hold what they had won in the Obama past and would expand on it. In fact, he claimed, one can reasonably expect the Democratic electoral vote to swell to over 400 in the near future from the 352 in 2016. The census will further increase the Democratic winning totals in Arizona, California, and Florida which the Democrats will win in 2016 and Texas which will flip in the 2020s.

As for the Congress,

And Hillary Clinton’s victory will propel the Democrats into control of the US Senate, with a projected gain of seats in Illinois, Indiana, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, and North Carolina at the least, making for a 6 seat gain to 52 seats, and possibly winning Arizona, Florida, and Missouri, so a maximum of 55 seats or a 9 seat gain. The House of Representatives will remain in Republican hands, but not by 30 seats, but more likely by 10-12 seats, so from a present total of 247-188 to 227-208 or 229-206.

Obviously, and I do mean obviously, Feinman didn’t know what he was talking about in the 2016 election. His smug assuredness intended to allay the fears of the Democratic ninnies worried about the election just days away instead revealed a clueless person who basked in his righteous certainty. The good times will continue and even better times are to come. Of course he was as wrong as wrong can be in his predictions and displayed no knowledge of actually what was going on in America, a characteristic trait among Democratic elitists regardless of whether Feinman is one himself.

So when all is said and done We the People did elect an immature child as president. Now he is under investigation, his poll numbers are disastrous, and Alabama, not one of the states predicted to vote Democratic ever, did vote Democratic. So let’s just say while Feinman didn’t know what he was talking about for the 2016 election, his forecasts might make more sense for 2018. But as will be seen, his impeachment prophesies showcase how anti-Trump fantasies are just as prevalent as pro-Trump conspiracy fantasies.

To Be Continued

False Prophets: A Winter Solstice Reflection – Part II Impeachment

 

Demographic Deluge or Democratic Disaster? The 2016 Elections

Clinton-Trump Probably Won’t Be The Next ‘Dewey Defeats Truman’

by Harry Enten, October 16, 2016 (Getty Images)

When the 2016 election year began, the Democrats were singing “Happy days are here again.” The old FDR song seemed very appropriate for the coming year. The Democrats expected to win the presidential election. The Democrats expected a “third term” for both the incumbent and the previous Democratic president. The Democrats expected to win back the Senate. The Democrats expected to make significant gains in the House. As we all know, those dreams were not fulfilled and the vision of a robust return to power were dashed by the great disrupter. Actually there is more to the story than one individual, something the Democrats need to keep in mind if they are serious about reversing the results the next time around.

Starting at the top, the Democrats didn’t do as well as they had in the 2012 presidential elections. Last time, the Democratic candidate won just over 51% of the popular vote. This time around the result was just over 48%, a drop of approximately 3%. That decrease is a significant number, roughly triple the 1% drop in the Republican percentage from just over 47% to just over 46%. In part both declines may be attributed to the disgust by voters over the two main choices. Still the large decline in the Democratic vote should give pause to those who focus on the plurality vote total and ignore the percentage trend.

One obvious area of concern is the women’s vote. As we enter the period of suffrage centennials, the white women vote did not go as hoped for by the Democrats. Despite all the egregious comments and actions by the Republican candidate who loves women only when he grabs them and they meet his age, race, and physical standards, white women voted 53% for him. That was not the expected result in the presidential election with the first female candidate of a major party.

In this regard, it is time for the Democrats to put Madeline Albright out to pasture. Her admonition about there being a special place in hell for women who don’t help women is part of what was fundamentally wrong with the Democratic candidate.  It is a racist comment that discounts black women who supported Barack Obama in the 2008 Democratic primary; her implication is that “women” means “white women” the way “actor” means “white person.” It is a sexist comment that denies women the right to choose be it a Mitt Romney, Bernie Sanders, or Donald Trump without being a traitor to their gender. That attitude of moral superiority and zealousness for the cause did not go over well with white women in the Day 1 march who did not share agreement on every item on the approved list of “women’s issues.” At some point, the Democrats might want to consider why they are alienating white women even with a world class pig in White House.

Besides touting the popular vote win, Democrats also like to point out the narrowness of the electoral win. While it certainly is true that the winner did not win in a landslide except in Trumpietown, his narrow victory still raises warning signs for the Democrats. Consider state of Wisconsin. Trump’s margin of victory was under 1% numbering in the thousands of votes, a seemingly small amount. By contrast, Obama won the state by close to 7% and over 200,000 votes. Those numbers are too big a shift to attribute to Russian intervention or the FBI. Wake up and smell the coffee.

One wonders why the state never appeared on the Democratic radar. One wonders why the Democratic candidate never appeared in a state that shifted over 7% in the vote in one election cycle. I recall reading just before the election a smug condescending out-of-touch-with-the-real-world blogger who confidently predicted a Democratic victory in 2016 comparable to the one in 2012 (332 votes). Maybe it would be even better with over 350 electoral college votes if some of the Republican states flipped Democratic.  I suspect this attitude may have been too prevalent among the Democratic elitists for them to see what was happening in the real world.

Wisconsin should not have been that big a surprise. The state has a Republican governor, Scott Walker. After he was first elected he won a hard-fought recall election. In 2014, Walker won for a third time with a  6.7% margin. There are Republican majorities in both chambers of the state legislature. Ron Johnson, the Republican incumbent candidate for Senate in 2016 won by about 3% and 100,000 votes. His seat was one the Democrats were counting on to win. The losing Democratic presidential and senate candidates won approximately the same number of votes. The Republican victory margin differs from 3% to under 1% in the two races because a third party candidate in the presidential race siphoned off votes that went for the Republican senate candidate.

These numbers mean that if the Republicans had nominated an adult for president instead of the loser of the Wisconsin Republican presidential primary, the margin of victory would have been closer to the 3% margin of victory in the Senate race. In other words, while the Democrats salivated over the prospect of Arizona flipping as New Mexico, Colorado, and Virginia have, they lost track of what was happening in the blue wall, their “own backyard.”

In approximately 80% of the states, Democrats did worse in 2016 than in 2012. This reduction occurred even when they won a state both times. This is Huge! Ohio was not even a battleground. The state the Democrats won by 2% in 2012, they lost by over 8.5% this time around. That’s no due to the Russians either. The Ohio senate race which was supposed to be hard-fought with a big-name Democratic candidate turned into a 21% drubbing. Hundreds of counties nationwide which had voted Democratic in 2012 voted Republican in 2016. Maps showing the trends from the last election to this one show Republican gains almost everywhere.

What is the explanation for these results? One answer by the losing Democratic candidate was that the voters for her opponent were deplorables. Well, maybe not all of them, just 47%. No data to support that conclusion were provided. As it turns out, the deplorables were just as capable of adopting the slur from the enemy as nasty women have been on the reverse side. As with Albright’s admonition and the smug take-it-for granted attitude of elitist bloggers, deplorables is a concept best relegated to dustbin if Democrats are serious about reversing the trends which have occurred following the 2008 elections.

Then, of course, there is the demographic wave of the future. Even if the Democrats do nothing, in time the demographic changes sweeping the country guarantee Democratic victories despite the temporary setbacks. For years now the Democrats have been waiting for Godot, for the magic moment when the new America of immigrants of color would sweep the country and turn the electoral map Democrat.

This demographic deluge has produced results in California and perhaps Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico. So far the eagerly anticipated browning of America has not occurred. The vote totals in the last election by Latin American immigrants and their offspring were comparable to those in 2008 and 2012, in the 27-28% range. George Bush’s 40% vote represents a high point for Republicans but one that would do damaging results to Democratic aspirations if repeated.

What have the Democrats accomplished with their over-the-top rhetoric incessantly repeated that a demographic deluge is coming, that the old America is dying and that a new progressive one is being born? A great politician once said for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.  So far the biggest impact of the rhetoric by the self-righteous zealots prophesizing the end is near has been to scare white people that the fate of their country is at risk due to alien invaders. How has that worked out for the Democrats?

It gets worse for the Democrats. What happens to the Democratic vision of identity politics if immigrants from Latin America (and Asia) intermarry with immigrants from Europe? What happens to the Democratic vision of identity politics if the Republicans catch on that Latin Americans Pope Francis, Fidel Castro, Marco Rubio, and Giselle Bündchen are not people of color? What happens to the Democratic vision of identity politics if Republicans catch on that immigrants from Latin America like immigrants from Europe know not only their continent of origin but their country, village, town, city, and ethnicity too? What happens to the Democratic vision of identity politics if Republicans catch on that immigrants from Latin American like immigrants from Europe want to live the American Dream? What happens to the Democratic vision of identity politics if Republicans catch on that immigrants from Latin America like immigrants from Europe are proud to be Americans and to be part of We the People?  Contrary to the Democratic wishes, Latin American immigrants are not middle-passage blacks where Democratic unanimity can be taken for granted. Should the Democrats take for granted that the party of malice will remain stupid forever? Alternative facts aren’t limited to just one party.

If the Democrats don’t like the election results they have no one to blame but themselves. Joe Biden for President and Elizabeth Warren for Vice President and none of this would be happening.