December 13, 2019

What’s that sound?

By Glenn

“If the facts are against you, argue the law. If the law is against you, argue the facts. If the law and the facts are against you, pound the table and yell like hell”

November 25, 2019

Donald Ignored His Right to Remain Silent

By Glenn

Donald’s own words reveal he used public funds for private gain.

Corruption = Biden

Sept. 22 “We had a great conversation. The conversation I had was largely congratulatory. It was largely corruption — all of the corruption taking place. It was largely the fact that we don’t want our people, like Vice President Biden and his son, creating to the corruption already in the Ukraine. And Ukraine — Ukraine has got a lot of problems,”

No tax dollars without investigation of Bidens.

“We’re looking for corruption, there’s tremendous corruption, and why should we be giving hundreds of millions of dollars to countries where there’s this kind of corruption?”

quid pro quo
/ˌkwid ˌprō ˈkwō/
a favor or advantage granted or expected in return for something.

Quid

ZELENSKY: I would also like to thank you for your great support in the area of defense. We. are ready to continue to cooperate for the next steps. Specifically, we are almost. ready to buy more Javelins from the United· States for defense purposes.

Quo

TRUMP: I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it.

1) Investigate Right Wing Conspiracy about Democrats
2) Investigate Right Wing Conspiracy against Joe Biden

So let’s recap Donald’s own words. Donald asked for a favor before he released military aid to defend against the Russians. That favor involved an investigation into Biden which would make headlines in the Presidential race

October 17, 2019

Authority without dissent is tyranny and destruction.

By Glenn

Authority without dissent is tyranny and destruction.

October 3, 2019

We’re All Alice

By Glenn
Alice at the Mad Hatter’s Tea Party

“The Hatter’s remark seemed to her to have no sort of meaning in it, and yet it was certainly English.”  Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland (1911, p.101)

Words ought to have meaning.  For the vast majority of us they do.  Unfortunately, we have walked through the looking glass and confront a Mad Hatter.   We’re all Alice now, talking and hearing English but lost in a world of make believe.

Donald Trump has already admitted to

1) Using American tax dollars to bribe a foreign leader.

2) Using American government agencies to extort a foreign leader.

3) Asking a foreign leader to interfere in the America elections.

Today we watched with our eyes and heard with our own ears Donald Trump ask Communist China to investigate a political opponent.   In what world is this OK? 

The United States of America spends millions of dollars to hire FBI and CIA agents.  The Mad Donald has convinced himself, and everyone else at his Tea Party, these professionals are really a liberal conspiracy.  These brave men and women put their lives on the line every day, but Donald insults their good name to play politics.

Like Alice, we now have to decide the truth.  We have to decide what is real?  What is insane? 

The longer we try to make sense of this conversation the more we will question reality.  The longer we treat his irrational ramblings as coherent, the deeper we will fall into the world of make believe. 

There is no rational argument to be had with him or his supporters. 

1) Using American tax dollars to bribe a foreign leader is wrong.

2) Using American government agencies to extort a foreign leader is wrong.

3) Asking a foreign leader to interfere in the America elections is wrong.

There is no justification for this behavior.  Either we stop it, or we condone it.  If you donate to, or vote for a candidate, who supports him, then you have joined his Tea Party.  The only way to stop it is to walk away and leave the looking glass.

I am tired of being Alice.  Are you?

October 1, 2019

“To the Republic”

By Glenn

Political allegiance cuts to the heart of patriotism.  In the Middle Ages, warriors owed their personal allegiance to their Lord.  For warriors, allegiance was earned on the battle field.  For everyone else, the Lord demanded allegiance at the point of a sword.  Monarchs dressed up this crude reality with claims to Divine Right.  In England, however, a remarkable transition took place.  The English rediscovered the meaning of “Republic” or “res publica.”

The Romans established their Republic around 500 BCE.   They took control from a monarch who treated their community as his personal property.  Over the next 300 years Romans refined their institutions, separating powers among three types of government to prevent tyranny.  According to Polybius, the two consuls acted as a monarch, the Senate acted as an aristocracy, and the Tribal Assembly acted as a Democracy.  These three Aristotelian forms prevented any one from overwhelming the other two.

War and militarism undermined the separation of powers.  As Romans waged perpetual war against its neighbors, generals took over politics.  Dissent, the essential feature of representative government, gave way to obedience and violence.  Generals encouraged their followers to see their neighbors as enemies to be fought in a Civil War rather than humans to be debated in an assembly.   Rome lost its Republic, not to a foreign invasion, but to politicians who treated government like their personal business and consolidated power.

During the Middle Ages, a few Republics survived.  They either transformed themselves into empires like Venice or lived under the shadow of empires like the German city-states.  Not until the English Civil War did a Republic reemerge as a viable option for larger states.  The English Parliament had learned during the Tudor dynasty that monarchs needed a partner.  Reaching back to Magna Carta, the Lords and the Commons extracted concessions from weak kings.

The tensions between King and Parliament exploded during the reign of Charles I.  Charles was a reckless monarch who asserted his personal prerogative rather than the public good.  Ironically, Charles created the most tension when Parliament refused to appropriate new money for his fruitless wars, and he responded by collecting “Ship Money,”  or tariffs, without Parliamentary approval.  He claimed foreigners paid the tariffs, not Englishmen. Parliament disagreed.

At first Parliament was too weak to challenge the King.  Charles ruled without Parliament for 11 years.  This period of personal rule sowed the seeds of distrust.  Parliament gained the upper hand when Charles stumbled into war with his two other Kingdoms, Ireland and Scotland.  Just like a man can own more than one house, monarchical theory allowed a single man to inherit, and govern, more than one kingdom.

In exchange for support against rebels in Ireland and Scotland, the English Parliament demanded concessions from Charles.  He refused, retreated to Nottingham and raised an army to fight Parliament.  This very stable genius managed to start three simultaneous wars in his three houses.  Yes, he lost. The Scots captured Charles on the battle field and turned him over the English. 

Parliament did the unthinkable.  They tried him for treason.  How could a King betray himself?  He couldn’t.  He could betray “res publica,”  the public thing.

That the said Charles Stuart, being admitted King of England, and therein trusted with a limited power to govern by and according to the laws of the land, and not otherwise; and by his trust, oath, and office, being obliged to use the power committed to him for the good and benefit of the people, and for the preservation of their rights and liberties; yet, nevertheless, out of a wicked design to erect and uphold in himself an unlimited and tyrannical power to rule according to his will, and to overthrow the rights and liberties of the people, yea, to take away and make void the foundations thereof, and of all redress and remedy of misgovernment, which by the fundamental constitutions of this kingdom were reserved on the people’s behalf in the right and power of frequent and successive Parliaments, or national meetings in Council; he, the said Charles Stuart, for accomplishment of such his designs, and for the protecting of himself and his adherents in his and their wicked practices, to the same ends hath traitorously and maliciously levied war against the present Parliament, and the people therein represented.

Thus, “res publica” reentered into history in a dramatic way.   Loyalty was a two way street.  Allegiance was a two way street.  The king earned loyalty by serving the public good.  Calling for war against his enemies was treason.  The public good demanded peace.  The Parliament had a constitutional duty to check Charles’ abuse of power.  They found him guilty and chopped off his head.

Governments are not a private business or affair.  The powers we delegate to our elected officials belong to us and are loaned to them.  Our constitution provides the superior powers to the legislative branch so that no executive could ever forget the lesson of Charles I.  Our Pledge of Allegiance is “To the Republic,” not the Chosen One.

September 25, 2019

Donald Trump’s High Crimes

By Glenn

I am old enough to remember that politics stops at the waters edge. Now, conservatives are defending foreign participation in American Democracy.

“The actions of the Trump presidency revealed dishonorable facts of betrayal of his oath of office and betrayal of our national security and betrayal of the integrity of our elections,” the speaker of the House said Tuesday.

What have Donald and crew already admitted to doing?

1) Using American tax dollars to bribe a foreign leader.
2) Using American government agencies to extort a foreign leader.
3) Asking a foreign leader to interfere in the America elections.

There is no excuse.

There is no doubt this was a quid pro quo.

quid pro quo
/ˌkwid ˌprō ˈkwō/
a favor or advantage granted or expected in return for something.

Quid

ZELENSKY: I would also like to thank you for your great support in the area of defense. We. are ready to continue to cooperate for the next steps. Specifically, we are almost. ready to buy more Javelins from the United· States for defense purposes.

Quo

TRUMP: I would like you to do us a favor though because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it.

1) Investigate Right Wing Conspiracy about Democrats
2) Investigate Right Wing Conspiracy against Joe Biden

These are High Crimes.

August 8, 2019

Militarism Threatens America

By Glenn

Militarism is an essential feature of totalitarianism, both fascism and and communism. Militarism embraces violence, unconditional loyalty, unquestioning obedience and absolute uniformity. Democracy, on the other hand, thrives with dialogue, earned respect, dissent and diversity of ideas. Our democracy is under assault. We must protect our values.

Montana Man Slams 13-Year-Old to Ground, Fracturing His Skull, for Not Removing Hat During Anthem