Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Rush To Judgment


Rush Limbaugh has made his career and fortune in denying truth and science, and scorning decency.

Now lung cancer is taking another smoker, despite his denial of the link between the two.

While he is a repugnant and vile man, I take no joy in his illness, and I wish people would not reflexively celebrate his condition.

However, no one should be surprised that the hate and racism Limbaugh generated has drawn hate back in his direction. In that sense, he asked for it.

I would much prefer that his hate and dishonesty would end by embracing compassion for the people who do not have the wealth and health care he has enjoyed.

That is unlikely, so death will have the final word.

This is sad to say, but our country would have been better off if he never existed, or at least wasn't such an authoritarian purveyor of divisive anger and lies. In that sense Limbaugh has been a cancer on our political discourse.

That said, I truly hate cancer more than I may seem to hate Limbaugh. It kills indiscriminately and cruelly. I will not celebrate his illness and suffering.

I do admit to finding some relief at the imminent end of his toxic and demonizing hate. Like Trump, he is an enemy of truth, decency and democracy.

Instead of rejoicing, I hope for a miracle.

I hope that he discovers he has the power to heal some of the wounds he has opened. I hope that in facing his mortality he realizes millions of people need better health care. I hope he finds a conscience and repents.

Saturday, January 25, 2020

Moral Courage And Its Opposite


On Friday, January 24th we watched House Impeachment Manager Representative Adam Schiff summarize the articles of impeachment against Trump. He spoke meticulously, factually, and eloquently, outlining Trump's abuse of power and obstruction of congress. 

He also reminded the Senate that history will record this sham impeachment trial of no witnesses and no documents allowed by the Party of the accused. He predicted posterity will not reward the defenders of the most corrupt and criminal administration our republic has had the misfortune to endure.

Representative Schiff noted this is the time for moral courage in the Senate, and quoted the relevant words of Robert F. Kennedy:

“Moral courage is a rarer commodity than bravery in battle or great intelligence. Yet it is the one essential, vital quality for those who seek to change a world that yields most painfully to change.”

Indeed. Moral courage is measured by the willingness to act on one's conscience and to stand for what is right, despite retaliation from those lacking this quality of character. The threat of “heads on a pike” for any Republican daring to express moral courage comes to mind.


Had it not been for the whistle blower's act of moral courage the Deplorable Despot would not have been impeached. One man of conscience made a difference.

Apart from former Republican Justin Amash, we have witnessed neither courage nor morals from elected Republicans. They have been obedient authoritarian followers to the point of serving and abetting the lies, corruption and crimes of the president. They have chosen loyalty to Trump over their oaths to defend the Constitution. 

Maybe a few will surprise us and vote guilty, but we know authoritarian personalities are unlikely to do so. Self interest, lockstep conformity, and power are their only values.

Like their leader, they will parrot Putin before they embrace truth and justice.

In addition to his honest and heartfelt summary, Mr. Schiff gave us a preview of, and rebuttal to, the White House defense team’s arguments. He outlined and refuted their complaints about an “unfair process” and “nasty” Democrats. He refuted their deflections about Ukrainians saying, "No quid pro quo” and their regurgitation of Putin's propaganda that Ukraine interfered in the 2016 election.

Sure enough, right out of the gate, White House counsel Pat Cipollone said, “If you were really confident in your position on the facts, why would you lock everybody out of it from the President's side? Why would you do that?”

Repeating Schiff’s points, CNN's Kevin Liptak correctly noted, “House Democrats made a formal offer to the White House to have a lawyer present during their proceedings, but the offer was rejected in a politically-tinged letter from Cipollone himself. And Republicans were permitted to participate in closed-door deposition of witnesses during the investigation phase. A total of 48 Republican members of the three committees holding the closed-door hearings — Intelligence, Foreign Affairs and Oversight — were allowed into the SCIF, and they were given equal time to question witnesses.” 


Schiff tweeted this later in the afternoon: "After listening to the President’s lawyers opening arguments, I have three observations: They don’t contest the facts of Trump’s scheme. They’re trying to deflect, distract from, and distort the truth. And they are continuing to cover it up by blocking documents and witnesses."

I see no need to list any more of these instances. Schiff was spot on, and the pattern will hold for the duration of their defense of the indefensible.

This is their indefensible leader, projecting like a spoiled sociopathic adolescent who just got caught red-handed while committing a crime.

“Our case against lyin’, cheatin’, liddle’ Adam “Shifty” Schiff, Cryin’ Chuck Schumer, Nervous Nancy Pelosi, their leader, dumb as a rock AOC, &; the entire Radical Left, Do Nothing Democrat Party, starts today at 10:00 A.M. on @FoxNews, @OANN, or Fake News, @CNN, or Fake News MSDNC!” ~ Donald J. Trump

We know the “case”. Mr. Schiff has already exposed their lies, and deflections.

The Washington Post editorial board wrote, “Mr. Schiff pointed out that, whether or not GOP senators demand relevant testimony and documents during the trial, more facts will eventually come out...Those who choose now to disregard the evidence against Mr. Trump and abet his obstruction will be reduced to watching in the months and years to come as the case against him — and against their abdication of constitutional duty — grows steadily stronger.”

Yes, history will remember their immoral cowardice, their treachery, and their betrayal of our Constitution and of our people. The corrupt and criminal Republican Party has sunk to its lowest point ever, and it will either suffer consequences, or our Constitutional republic will certainly degrade and expire.

The enemies of democracy and the Constitution are traitors, and the Party of Trump and Putin will stand before another jury in November. They will face the American voters. The immoral cowards can run, but they can't hide.

Wednesday, January 1, 2020

2020 Vision?

Welcome to 2020. This is not just another year, and it will not be just another election.

Impeachment has been decided. Regardless of what the corrupt Republican Senate decides on the removal of the corrupt criminal in the Oval Office, American voters will face the ultimate choice.

Will the American voters embrace the neo-fascism and lawlessness of authoritarian white nationalism?

Or will American voters embrace more democracy and decency, with fair and equitable representation? Will the majority finally have a voice over the screaming far Right minority?

In our seriously flawed democratic republic only a supermajority of votes can counter the tyranny of a rabidly cruel, science-denying, dishonest, and treacherous regime. 

Only a supermajority of votes can curtail the party of avarice, bent on coddling their corporate elite owners, while punishing the poor and minorities. 

Only a supermajority of votes can defeat the Government Of Putin and
Greedy Old Plutocrats who have been waging war on our democracy while decimating and selling out our government of, by, and for the people.


Will we pass the final test of our Great Experiment, and reclaim the founders' ideal of consent of the governed? 

Or will we passively allow the nation to embrace the lies and anger of the cold and bitter dark side of the American soul? 

It CAN happen here, and it HAS happened here. But the forces of ignorance and rage will not wield as much power to inflict their destruction on democracy, if there are enough American voters that can still see reason, facts, and decency with 2020 vision.