Trump

Trump, Biden, OJ Simpson. What?

At the risk of sounding crass, insensitive and terse, I’m going to simplify why the Biden presidency is going to happen – whether you like it or not; the Trump campaign is bringing knives into a nuclear war. Here’s what I mean.

Remember the OJ trial? America was riveted. The infamous glove, the Bruno Mali shoes, the blood spatter, the history of domestic violence, and of course – Ron and Nicole’s bodies — slain and left at the scene.

All the signs of murder were pretty self-evident, after ruling out murder suicide. Then, all signs pointed to OJ as the killer. By most people’s estimation from the evidence found at the scene and subsequent sites of investigation, most people believe(d) OJ did it. But do you remember the ruling in that criminal case? ‘Not guilty.’

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President Trump: Excessive Examination and the Expected Exoneration

*On Tuesday, February 4, 2020 The Senate of the United States announced the acquittal of President Donald J. Trump.  Only the third president in history to be impeached, and just as the other two, (William Clinton and Andrew Johnson) he was not removed by the Senate. Richard Nixon would have been removed, but he resigned before that could have happened.

First, it was the Russian Investigation that was going to provide all of the charges to get Trump impeached. Instead, it simply drew attention to a Justice department that was taking the side of the Democrats, and F.B.I. managers who were willing to disregard the law in the interests of Democrats. The law was being ignored and testimony was doctored, with evidence (or lack of evidence) that was tilted towards a $24 million investigation that yielded very little. Keep Reading

On Not Taking the Bad With the Good

*Tom was an alcoholic and a smoker.  A master carpenter and sometimes-roofer, he was wiry and tough and a living old-school ad for both Budweiser and Marlboro.

From time to time, usually at the urging of his family, Tom would stop drinking for a while, or stop smoking for a while, or stop both, for a while.  At a point in his late 30s he decided and voiced that he’d rather live a short life with his beer & cigs than live a long life without them.  When he entered the hospital at age 43, his body riddled with cancer, he did not complain or blame or mourn.  He knew why he was there and he was at peace with it.

We all do this to a certain extent: put up with some bad if it is outweighed by some good.  Drinkers put up with hangovers because they enjoy the drunk more than they dislike the hangover.  Pot smokers live with coughing their lungs out when they invariably take too big a hit, but decide it is worth it for the buzz.  Obese people enjoy the third bowl of ice cream and bag of chips more than they dislike buying bigger clothes each year.

And so it goes.

We also do this when we vote.

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While the North Pole Cooks, Trump Tweets

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*There is a giant gulf today between those who promote and profit from fossil fuels, including Presidents Trump and Putin, and our life support systems – Nature. In my latest book, Save Nature Now, I’ve dubbed it “Black Gold Fever,” a contagious excitement over the riches of fossil fuels.

Consider this, there has never been such an accumulation of money on our planet controlled by a handful of people. The bulk of that wealth was derived from killing Nature at the expense of the health of our biosphere, the livable space occupied by all living organisms.

Instead of prudently protecting our home, since 1997 earthlings have burned as much fossil fuel as the previous 250 years. Keep Reading

Pray for Trump – The Grass is not Always Greener

As things in and around the White House deteriorate before our eyes, millions of Americans continue to steadfastly support the President.  Meanwhile, millions of Americans revel in the idea of his ouster, assuming that any situation would be better than the one we’re in.  Assumptions tend to result in uncomfortable situations, and it may never be truer than in this case, as Pence might be worse than Trump!

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Pride and Pessimism – Welcome Back to Nixonian Times

I felt such excitement watching Olympic women, Kikkan Randall and Jessie Diggins, win the first ever cross-country gold medal for the USA.  To know there are men and women competing for the USA; men and women who understand the importance of teamwork who love representing America – is a welcome distraction from the chaos in Washington.

But after a night of excitement, I knew I could count on FOX “SPEWS” to bring me back to reality with a suggestion that  former US Army General Michael Flynn  withdraw his guilty plea on lying to the FBI. This was apparently based on a judge’s order for the Mueller Special Council to turn over any exculpatory evidence to attorneys representing General Flynn.

And just like that, my American Olympic bliss was met by Shepard Smith’s judgmental stare.

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Election Interference – The Next Intelligence Failure

DAYTON — Special investigator Robert Mueller secured indictments for three Russian companies and thirteen Russian citizens with “a widespread effort to interfere with the  2016 presidential election,” according to Saturday’s Wall Street Journal.  The Russians had a “strategic goal to sow discord into the U.S. political system.”

Deputy U.S. Attorney General Rod Rosenstein, said that there is no allegation in the indictment that any U.S. citizen knowingly participated in the alleged crimes. That’s one of those statements that I would repeat, because a lot of readers will not believe it the first time they read it, and they will tune into or read some media that will falsely report that the Trump administration officials are next in line to be indicted.

Michael Flynn
Michael Flynn

Nowhere does it say the Trump administration  is still under investigation, although Michael Flynn, former national security advisor, has pleaded guilty, and “there was no indication Friday that Mr. Mueller wouldn’t seek more charges in the future.”

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Skating on Thin Ice – American Diplomacy in Pyeongchang

BOSTON —  The opening ceremonies of the 23rd Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea begin Thursday night.  In theory, the Games serve as a refuge from the geopolitical environment of the times. Nations put aside their conflicts and disagreements for what is supposed to be a peaceful and civil celebration of sport and competition.

The reality is that this is rarely true. From Jesse Owens defying Hitler at the 1929 Games in Berlin to American sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos defiantly raising their fists in protest at the Mexico City Games of 1968 to the deadly Israeli hostage crisis at the 1972 Games in Munich, the Games have always been tinged with politics.

Jesse Owens
Jesse Owens

This year’s Olympic Games will be no different. The issue most obviously underpinning the whole Games is the escalating tensions between North Korea and South Korea (and their allies), which is only further exacerbated by the Games being held on the Korean peninsula. In the weeks and months leading up to the Games, it has often felt like a ‘two steps forward, one step back’ kind of situation between the two conflicted nations.

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NFL Protest Hypocrisy – A Foolish Irony

NEW YORK — Professional athletes have every right to protest law enforcement during the singing of our national anthem at sporting events. We can picture the conversations between players and coaches where a guy like Colin Kaepernick would insist that he’d feel like a fake, like a complete phony, if he were to put his hand over his heart to honor a country that he feels continues to treat people of African descent unfairly, or minority groups in general.  

Understood. And on some level Mr. Kaepernick should be commended for staying true to his beliefs. It is also easy to see why coaches, team managers and owners have not seen it fit to scorn anyone who refuses to do that which they feel uncomfortable; that which they see as going along with empty and hollow symbolism for a country they do not deem as worth honoring, or worth respecting in moments such as these.

No, they should not be forced to stand at attention, hand over heart, for the singing of an anthem they simply don’t believe in, and no one, anywhere, should be demanding that they do.  

The problem is not in these players taking a knee in protest of American law enforcement or America at large. The problem goes much deeper than such things, and is multifold.  

Colin Kaepernick
Photo Credit: Washington Times

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Pizza & Politics: Papa John – Metaphor for America

BOSTON — John Schnatter, (now former) CEO of pizza chain Papa Johns, blamed declining sales on NFL anthem protests during the company’s quarterly earnings report. Papa John’s ($PZZA) trading fell by as much as 12%, losing about $70 million in value.

In a thinly veiled shot at commissioner Roger Goodell, Schnatter argued that the issue “should have been nipped in the bud” a year and a half ago, when Colin Kaeperinck first started to protest during the national anthem.

He went on to say that “once the issue is resolved” that he is “optimistic the NFL’s best years are ahead.” Papa John’s also announced they would be removing the NFL logo from all advertising campaigns in an attempt to distance themselves from the league and the protests, which he stated is “polarizing the customer, polarizing the country”.

Schnatter, an outspoken supporter of President Trump, is no stranger to mixing pizza and politics.

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