The George W. Bush White House ‘Lost’ 22 Million Emails

Thank heavens that this political savagery will finally be over in less than 50 days.  I have almost given up on reading or watching any news sources as they are totally flooded with Mr. Trump and his malicious rhetoric.  Hillary using a private email is one of the main topics for ages now.  If you are one of those who doesn’t see this a purely political then the quote below if for you;

Clinton’s email habits look positively transparent when compared with the subpoena-dodging, email-hiding, private-server-using George W. Bush administration. Between 2003 and 2009, the Bush White House “lost” 22 million emails. This correspondence included millions of emails written during the darkest period in America’s recent history, when the Bush administration was ginning up support for what turned out to be a disastrous war in Iraq with false claims that the country possessed weapons of mass destruction (WMD), and, later, when it was firing U.S. attorneys for political reasons.Like Clinton, the Bush White House used a private email server—its was owned by the Republican National Committee. And the Bush administration failed to store its emails, as required by law, and then refused to comply with a congressional subpoena seeking some of those emails. “It’s about as amazing a double standard as you can get,” says Eric Boehlert, who works with the pro-Clinton group Media Matters. “If you look at the Bush emails, he was a sitting president, and 95 percent of his chief advisers’ emails were on a private emailsystem set up by the RNC. Imagine if for the last year and a half we had been talking about Hillary Clinton’s emails set up on a private DNC server?”

Source: The George W. Bush White House ‘Lost’ 22 Million Emails

It just amazes me how Bush/Cheney administration got by doing mostly illegal stuff with no admonishment from congress or other agencies.  It is indeed a double standard when it comes to GOP representatives.

I am thinking seriously of just stopping all my news sources until November 9th. I don’t need the agony in my life right now. On that day Mr. Trump will go back to his casino empire and leave the serious stuff to the real people.

With all the voting stuff being changed by my very red State I am also looking to do an absentee ballot this year for the first time in my life. For Primary day this year I had to wait in the voting line for over an hour because of the changes they have made.  I imagine that the wait will exceed 3 hours this coming election. Up until now I have never had to wait more than 10 minutes where I live now.

Being a responsibly citizen of this country sure takes a lot more work than it used to…

Tax Cuts And Other Things.. Bill Clinton Style…

I must admit that my life was good while Bill Clinton was in office. My 401k flourished and allowed me to retire early instead of looking for another job after being downsized by a Chinese company that bought our our division of business. I also appreciate his logical thinking. He just seems to have the right words for every circumstance.

2016-09-11_18-19-08.png“I know when the last time we followed the same economic policies he’s [Trump] recommending — cut the taxes like crazy on the richest people in America, double the debt and have no money left over to invest, stop regulating the financial institutions, repeal the healthcare law with nothing to replace it, stop enforcing all these environmental laws, global warming is a hoax invented by China — Last time we did that kind of stuff, it didn’t work out too well for us,” he said.Clinton later added:

“What do we have to lose? Give me a break.”

Source: Clinton Holds Steady Against Trump as Campaign Enters Final Weeks: Poll – NBC News

I guess Bill had to pick from Trumps ever changing “strategies” to make the comment above but this one does sound like the Reagan years with tax breaks for the rich so that it will trickle down to the rest of us.  That is was started the middle class deterioration that continues even today.  But then of course Trump being on the receiver end of those breaks makes perfect sense to me. Everything about him yells  ME, ME, ME…

It is amazing to me that Bill can put so many thoughts in so few words. I pride myself in doing that but only in the written mode and even that requires many edits for me to accomplish.

It will be interesting to see what role Bill plays when Hillary is sitting in the Oval Office next year. He already said he would step away from the very successful Clinton Foundation so he will need something else to do.  Unlike Mr. Bush who retired after him he will need something to take up his time besides vegging out and watching sports. I suppose they will give him some “first husband” duties but that will likely not be enough for Bill.

Why Not A Trampoline??

When George Bush  in 2000 said he was a “compassionate conservative”, my first thought was there is no such thing. But then after some thoughtful meditation I had to take back those words. I must admit that compassion, at least beyond a minimum level, seems to be pretty far away from most in the GOP. They seem to be much more concerned about the top 1% than the bottom 20%. Its been a while since I collected the quote below but I’m pretty sure it came from Jim Wallis at Sojourners just before he retired from that organization.

When my oldest daughter, Hannah, was in elementary school she asked me 2016-08-11_12-24-58to explain the difference between conservative and liberal. I replied, “It’s too complicated.” She said, “Try me.” So I told her my best description was a metaphor, that of life as a high-wire act. Liberals are worried that without a net below the high-wire act of life, the performer may die or suffer when they fall. Conservatives are worried that if a net is built below, the performer may not be concerned enough about falling and use the net as a hammock. She paused for a moment and responded, “Why not build a trampoline below, so if they fall it will send them right back up?” Indeed.

Source: What Do We Owe One Another? Chasing Compassionate Conservatism in 2016 | Sojourners

I love the definition of liberal/conservative he gave his daughter but I loved her response even more. She seems wise way beyond her youthful years.  It is not that conservatives are necessarily unconcerned for those who fall on hard times. It seems more about making sure they don’t get lazy with what they are provided.  It is more a a skeptic/pessimistic view of life they are for the most part famous for. They just can’t help themselves in that regard.🙂  I personally know quite a few people in the bottom 20% and I don’t think any of them want to live there for any longer than necessary. They are for the most part very hard working people.  As the old saying goes they sometimes need a hand up rather than a hand out.

If we ever get some sanity back into our political processes maybe we can turn the net into a trampoline. When a person loses his job for whatever reason we are there to help take care of their family while they re-train or do what is necessary to get another job.  Free education, as Bernie pointed out, would go a long way toward that end.

Maybe when the conservatives quit fighting the liberals just because they have different solutions they might come together in compromise to do what is best for the people.  Why not a trampoline that will get them right back on their feet????

Congressional Pensions??

2016-08-29_15-51-30.pngWhen our founders set up our government their intention was that its citizens would come to the nation’s capital for a period of time  to contribute to the running of the people’s business and would then return to their normal lives.  Of course that is not what is happening today. There are way too many people  in our congress who are now collecting very lucrative pensions even after even relatively short terms in congress. There are those like Strom Thurmond, who have been there for decades and seem to want to die in office. John McCain first comes to mind in this category.

One of the major problems with this current mode of doing business, or more appropriately not doing business, is that the common good of the nation is forgotten in the process. Our representatives primary goal is to do everything possible to stay in office. The money needed to do that is what causes most of our problems.

The gridlock that we find ourselves in today is primarily due to two causes: unlimited terms in office and the gerrymandering that makes it possible.  When it seems that there are so many around that are very upset with the current political situation, I am really somewhat hopeful. If the GOP is decisively defeated in the coming election I am hoping that will cause a primary shift in the way all those yahoos think inside the beltway. They will finally understand that creating gridlock will not keep them in office.

With that renewed sanity, some there just might take a step back and look at the bigger picture. The party that is able to do that the most successfully will have the best chances of survival. No longer will the party over principles rule the day as seems so endemic today.  The second thing that then needs to be accomplished is for the Supreme Court to declare gerrymandering to be unconstitutional. Then it is up to us, as citizens, demand term limits similar to what was instituted for the president more than a half century ago. If more than eight years is too long for a president it should also be too long for members of congress.

The second shoe that will drop with term limits is to eliminate congressional pensions. No one will be around long enough to need them. Representing the people will finally be considered a limited time privilege and not an occupation as the inventors of our form of government intended.

I am a dreamer aren’t I????

It often takes some catastrophic event to cause paradigm shifts in how we do things. I am hoping that will be the case in the coming months and years.  WE simply can’t continue down the current road if we hope to survive as a nation.

Owning Our Dark Side….

Its time to do some overall reflection the two political conventions just ended and then to move on to other things.  The contrast between the two could not have been greater.  One was about hatred and fear and the other was about future possibilities.  One was about living in the past, the other about preparing for a better future.

I am really starting to feel sorry for my Republican friends. They ended up with a egomaniac at the head of their ticket. How that happened was for the most part their own making but I’m sure 90% of those who claim the GOP banner are good decent people. But it is that ten percent who are now the face of their party. Trump, Limbaugh, O’Reilly are the face of it and it is to my mind an ugly face.

And Trump is getting plenty of help, even as many Republicans fret that he’s digging them further into a hole they’ll struggle to climb out of. On Monday, Michelle Obama said, in the most moving passage of an extraordinary speech, “I wake up every morning in a house that was built by slaves. And I watch my daughters, two beautiful, intelligent, black young women playing with their dogs on the White House lawn.” It was part of her argument that the greatness of America lies in its ability to change, to overcome its weaknesses and its sins, to be forever a work in progress. Yet some on the right couldn’t hear that as a redemptive story; all they heard was a black lady complaining about slavery again.

The next day, Rush Limbaugh, the country’s most popular radio host and a relentless race-baiter, complained that when it comes to slavery, the Obamas are “never going to let it go,” so determined are they to make white people feel bad. That evening, the most popular personality on the Fox News Channel — Bill O’Reilly, whose angry-old-white-guy persona is a living caricature of the prototypical Republican voter — felt the need to assert that “Slaves that worked there [constructing the White House] were well fed and had decent lodgings provided by the government.” That outreach to minorities is really coming along great.

Even if you think Republican policy ideas are superior, there’s just no question which party is the inclusive and welcoming one. Democrats may have their problems, but on the national level, their multi-racial, multi-ethnic, interfaith coalition represents not just America’s future, but its present as well. Maybe one day Republicans will figure out a way around it, but it won’t be by doing what they’re doing now.

Source: Why Night 2 of the Democratic convention was a glorious contrast to the RNC

2016-07-27_10-13-00.pngAs indicated above one of the basic problems with our country is that  like Limbaugh and O’Reilly we for the most part won’t own up to our darker side.  Too many flatly deny any wrongdoing. That is one thing that Germany has over us.  They have learned that it is healing to recognize that Hitler was a part of German history. They don’t deny it or try to sweep it under a rug. They mourn it with the rest of us.

We Americans are yet to really admit that we annihilated  a native-American population of millions through genocide in order to steal their land.  We as a country, but especially in the South, have failed to openly admit that we enlsaved millions in order to make our lives easier. When we don’t own up to our faults there is little possibility that we can truly learn from them. This is one of the lessons that I wish my Republican friends would learn.   Its not about guilt as Limbaugh shouts…

 

Its Been A While Since We Had A New Political Party…

I think it is time for a shakeup of our political system. It has been 160 years since we had a new party on the American scene.  Maybe it is time…

2016-07-26_12-00-16.pngMany Americans are justifiably nervous that the know-nothing pathological narcissist at the top of the Republican ticket might actually win the presidency. Still, while this could indeed happen, it remains unlikely….

It shows, for instance, that the percentage of non-centrists in the House Republican caucus has gone from about 44 percent in 1999 to nearly 90 percent today, while the number of non-centrist Democrats has stayed almost exactly the same at about 10 percent. Since Ronald Reagan took office, the ideological distance between the parties has more than doubled.

Trump is therefore not just the product of the conservative echo chamber, or the Tea Party aversion to pragmatic compromise. His rise is evidence that the party and its voters may soon fuse their increasingly anti-system behavior and preferences with a political figure who shares Trump’s contempt for democracy but who also possesses the skills and temperament to make his dark vision a reality.

SOURCE: American democracy is hurtling toward an apocalyptic showdown about legitimacy

The base, whatever that is, of the Republican party just seems bent on anti-system behavior. What happened to the true conservative I simply don’t know. I admit to being a conservative in the fiscal sense. Our deficit spending, especially on the military, and our failure to maintain a tax structure to successfully manage the social aspects of our country just don’t make sense to me. But as the quote above says since 90% of the Republicans in the house are now in the anti-establishment mode it seems obvious where we need to seriously trim our weeds. But until gerrymandering is finally declared unconstitutional that is not likely to happen at least in the House.

I saw an interesting interview on CNN recently. The panel was made of of four Republican strategists. Only one of the four was promoting the Trump candidacy.  The other three were in the mode of how to reclaim the party after Trump is soundly defeated in November.

Given the total obstructionist attitude of the current Republican congress it just may be time for something new. A society cannot exist by standing stubbornly  in a protectionist mode.  Neither can a political party  exist with only a small minority of its country’s citizenry.

I had high hopes that Mr. Ryan, when he took over as Speaker of the House, would break the gridlock but just the opposite seems to have happened.  He has clearly stated that his top priority is party above principle. His  and McConnell’s endorsement of Trump simply because he managed to bully his way through the Republican pack and get the nomination is shameful to me. I have lost all respect for him and I imagine many of their once conservative base have too!

Its been a while since we had a new political party… maybe it is time…. I just hope it has a fiscal conservative bent.  The Democrats totally abandoned that idea decades ago…

 

Stronger Together…

I have been struggling to figure out just what to say in my 500 words about Day 4 of the DNC convention. I think it comes down to that day’s theme “Stronger Together”. The other is that it put a face on Hillary that simply was not there before.

2016-07-29_19-45-24.pngTwenty years ago I wrote a book called It Takes a Village. A lot of people looked at the title and asked, what the heck do you mean by that? This is what I mean. None of us can raise a family, build a business, heal a community, or lift a country totally alone. America needs every one of us to lend our energy, our talents, our ambition to making our nation better and stronger. I believe that with all my heart. That’s why “Stronger Together” is not just a lesson from our history. It’s not just a slogan for our campaign. It’s a guiding principle for the country we’ve always been and the future we’re going to build. [Clinton]…

And more than ever before, Democrats translated that diversity into a story about America. Who would have thought that it would be the Democratic convention, not the Republican one, that was saturated in patriotism? And not the apologetic patriotism so many of us got used to hearing from them in the last couple of decades, the kind that says, “Hey, we love our country, too! Really!”

Source: Hillary Clinton finally found the message she was looking for

I think the words above say it pretty clearly. While the Republican candidate says that America is going down in flames and only he can save, the Democrats are celebrating our country’s strength and saying together we can fix the problems we have.

Me vs Us!!!     A BIG  BIG DIFFERENCE TO ME..

Personally I now have a better understanding of Hillary’s lifelong commitment to children and families. I have always known that she is a tough politician but her soft side was also new to me.  I liked her comment about how she has been all about “public service”, service all the way, public not as much.   She is a guarded person but with all the arrows thrown at her over the years by the GOP it is amazing to me that she is still on the world stage. A lessor woman, or man, would have faded from the limelight.

The difference between last week’s convention and this one is night/day. The choice has never been clearer. Perhaps the largest crowd of people ranting about how the CEOs have gotten 90% of the gains since the 2008 meltdown while the working guy/gal got a pittance of that are the very people wanting to put one of the One-Percenters in the White House. That totally makes no sense to me!!!    I have sympathy for the uneducated white guy. He has not gotten a break in years. I just pray that there are more of us who want to solve our current problems without taking the country down in flames in the process…

 

Democratic Convention Day 3 

2016-07-28_08-09-20Day 3 at the Democratic convention was an “about time” moment when Democrats showed us just how unstable and reckless person Trump is. A lot of it came from the mouths of leaders in the Republican party. First off  I want to give you a crowd shot from last night. Can you see the difference between it and the ones I gave you of the Republican convention?🙂  If the GOP is going to try and salvage their party from its present condition it is going to take  more than old white men like me. Diversity is the crown jewell of our nation and its about time the GOP got on board with that crucial fact. If they don’t do it now I am afraid they never will…

Democrats are not merely going to paint Mr. Trump as extreme and unprepared, offensive and immature, a cheat and a fraud. They are going to attack him — carefully, and maybe indirectly — as mentally unfit. For Mr. Obama and other speakers, the idea was expressed in conventional form, as a concern about “temperament.” But it was Mr. Bloomberg, a billionaire known for directness and limitless self-confidence, who went on Wednesday where no Democrat did: He said Mr. Trump lacked the mental fitness for office. “Let’s elect a sane, competent person,” Mr. Bloomberg told the audience. It’s going to be one heck of a summer.

Source: Democratic Convention Day 3 Takeaways: America First – The New York Times

I can’t understand the “bump” that Trump got in the polls after his four days of hate and fear. The guy know no bounds or civility. I’m sure that is attractive to some of the bitter and spiteful among us but I still can’t believe that there are many of them around in this country.

I don’t have Mr. Trump on my tweet list but I’m sure he is spewing out his hatred to everyone who said an inconvenient word about him yesterday and that seems to be quite a crowd. The Democratic convention will end tonight and then it is on to 100 days of utter filth from Trump and his angry supporters.  I think I will be taking off a significant part of that time from blogging political things. I will try to let things settle,  meaning waiting for sanity to return to many, before I give much thought to this stuff again.

Unlike past conventions President Obama’s speech was not the highlight of the convention and that is how it should be.  He is passing the mantel on to another Democrat this fall. I hope Hillary can excite the electorate like Obama did during his first campaign.

I am typically not a worrier, it does no good to worry about something you can’t change. So, again I will continue to have faith that the vast majority of us realize that the country is not going down in a flaming death and we don’t need a person in the White House who will actually cause that to happen.

I have faith…

Back To The Good Old Days…

2016-07-27_08-07-15.pngIf you know me you are probably puzzled about the title of this post.  For the most part I believe that the “good old days” just weren’t that good, but there are a few exceptions.

Before I get to the crux of this post’s title I want to give you my other views of day 2 of the Democratic convention. One of the main thing that hit me was how all the networks seem to be viciously searching  for controversy. They cover very little of the actual proceedings.  That is very different than the good old days where you could actually listen to at least some of the speakers. Now they spend their time talking to the political pundits and searching for the sensational and telling you what you are supposed to think.

But there was a gem in the middle of this media dung hill. It is a place where no one is giving their “expert” opinion about this or that.  Instead it is about allowing the viewer to  form their own opinions and to view the proceedings and without commercials!  That place is called C-Span.  We used to view the conventions in the good old days as places to gather facts and views which maybe are not on our agenda.

I watched the calling of the roles for votes.  Yes, all the States give silly commentary about themselves before they announce their numbers but in a way that is what the convention is all about.  Of course I recognize when the spin machine is on, which is about all the time,  threading through that is part of the fun in the good old days.

So for the rest of this convention I will be watching it in low resolution on the C-Span channel.

 

Democratic Convention: Day 2

To me Day 2 of the convention was about the adoring spouse, Bill Clinton that is. Sometimes I forget just how good he is at “spinning a story”. Yeah, some think he rambles too much but I just think he likes to tell a good story and the story about his wife was a good one.  He talked of the good times and the bad and how Hillary was there for the family.

“My daughter had the best mother in the whole world,” he said tonight, adding that Hillary was “first and foremost” a mother, “our family’s designated worrier” who only worried about Bill’s parenting when he took a couple days off with Chelsea to watch all six “Police Academy” movies “back-to-back.” He described Hillary on her knees, lining Chelsea’s Stanford dorm room drawers with paper when their daughter moved to college, until Chelsea told them it was time to leave.

He never mentioned Donald Trump, the man he used to be friendly with and play golf with. He simply alluded to the way the Republican convention had tried to turn Hillary into a “cartoon” villainess. “Life in the real world is complicated and hard,” he said, and “a lot of people think it’s boring.”“One is real, the other is made up,” he said of the caricature of Hillary. “You nominated the real one.”

Source: Hillary Clinton’s Convention: Day 2 – The New York Times

I know Mr. Trump’s winning strategy is to put down his opponents with the most insulting and false accusations possible. He is good at that but I kind of think that those who bothered to watch Bill’s speech last night got a very different story which I hope sticks to many.  It is obvious to anyone who has watched her over the ages that Hillary is a very guarded person when it comes to a public persona.  She wants to be known for her intelligence and insight, not the softer side that she obviously has.  Giving us the softer side Bill helped make her a person and not at all as Trump portrays. Has she made some mistakes?  Sure she has, anyone who makes critical decisions or a regular basis is bound to do that.

Day 2 of the convention made it a little easier for me to press the Hillary button come this fall.  I didn’t really need help in deciding which button to push.  I would have voted for anybody but Trump, but I now feel easier that she is the person for the Oval Office.

I am saving part of my observations of this day’s convention for an afternoon’s post entitled “The Good Old Days”. It will be about the media’s coverage of this and last week’s events.  It will be about sensationalism. Tune in later for that.

It will certainly be interesting to see a president and a past president occupy the White House at the same time.. I hope Hillary takes some of Bill’s advice the same way as I’m sure he took her’s when he sat in the Oval Office…

‘Indiana Hates Mike Pence As Much As Indiana Jones Hates Snakes’

Since there is nothing much happening at the Democratic convention yet, I thought I would get out another Pence post.

If I believe the number of “Dump Pence” signs in my area I can see that many in Indiana don’t care much for our governor and am glad he, like Sarah Palin before him, is headed to oblivion come the Trump defeat this November. Simply speaking he hooked his horse to the wrong political wagon.

“Indiana voters hate Pence as much as Indiana Jones hates snakes,” the comedian said during her opening monologue on “Full Frontal With Samantha Bee” Monday night.

“Who is Mike Pence?” Bee asked during the segment. “If you’re a lady Hoosier, you may recognize him as the governor who inspected your reproductive organs every 30 days to make sure you weren’t using them …

“Congratulations Indiana! You just got rid of one of the worst governors you’ve ever had,” she said, while offering condolences to the Garden State.

“I’m sorry New Jersey, you were this close,” she said while holding her thumb and forefinger barely apart.

Source: Samantha Bee: ‘Indiana Hates Mike Pence As Much As Indiana Jones Hates Snakes’

I have never seen anything by Samantha Bee but the quotes above are funny in a crude way.

Unchallenged Claims….

The media had a lot to talk about last week in the RNC convention. Not so much so far with the Democrat side. Except for a very small (<5%) of the delegates there is just not much controversy.

But once the evening arrived, the Sanders dead-enders were subjected to an absolute blitzkrieg of unity. There was Sanders supporter Sarah Silverman doing a bit with Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) — and ad-libbing, “Can I just say to the Bernie or Bust people, you’re being ridiculous.” There was Michelle Obama, giving a speech so terrific and basking in such a tide of love from the audience that you almost expected her to ascend to the sky on a chariot made of pure light. Then came progressive hero Elizabeth Warren, and finally Sanders himself.

It didn’t solve the problem entirely — throughout the evening there were periodic moments when a few people would begin some chant or other in an attempt to distract from what was going on up on the stage, and Warren in particular had to speak over persistent chanting. But it soon became clear that it was just a small number of Sanders dead-enders — according to some accounts, it was coming entirely from the California delegation and may have been fewer than a dozen people — even if they were able to make an unusual amount of noise. When they began chanting over Rep. Keith Ellison during his introduction of Sanders in an apparent attempt to drown out his praise of the Vermont senator, it took on a surreal cast.

Source: Bernie Sanders’ devastating rebuke to ‘Bernie or Bust’

With not much to say about the Democrats yet, so this post is about something that came up on Sunday. Before the convention started I watched a CNN segment with Carl Bernstein, of the “Woodward and Bernstein” fame. He was screaming about how the media coverage of the current political campaigns is pitiful in that the press is not doing anything to counter ridiculous political claims by the candidates and their supporters. They allowed Trump and his backers to say anything and don’t bother to seek out the truthfulness of the claims! To him investigative reporting is dead in the U.S. media and I kind of agree.

The press/media serves a vital purpose in our democracy. We, the public, expect them to seek out truth in our political processes so that the voters can make informed decisions. Letting grandiose claims go without investigation is dangerous to our democracy.

I hear the political pundits say that political organizations don’t matter much anymore.  Instead it is social media that drives our political processes.  If that means that unfounded accusations and “facts” go without scrutiny then that is certainly a bad thing.  At least to this senior citizen…

Convention Report – A Wrap Up…

I am so relieved that the GOP conventions is finally over. Perhaps this will be their last one. Who knows?? As pointed by the quote below Mr. Trump sees a vastly different America than I do. But then again he probably sees EVERYTHING vastly different than I do.

Throughout this campaign, whenever he has talked about America, it’s only been to claim that the country is a bottomless pit of suffering and despair. The unemployment rate is over 40 percent! Crime is skyrocketing! Terrorists are everywhere! Illegal aliens are pouring over our borders like never before! We don’t make anything! We never win anymore! The whole world is laughing at us!…

And that’s what he served up Thursday night: a litany of horrors, painting a picture of the dark present which only he and he alone can deliver us from, all presented with over an hour of relentless, loud, sweaty shouting….

There were no interesting turns of phrase, no themes introduced and repeated, no rhythm, no emotional crescendo, and certainly nothing to suggest that its authors gave the barest thought to trying to persuade any voter who hasn’t already bought his “Trump That Bitch” t-shirt.

But it will be remembered nonetheless, for how well it captured Donald Trump’s personality and campaign. It was ugly and blunt and narcissistic and frightening, and if it had nothing but bad things to say about America? Well what could describe Donald Trump’s candidacy better than that?

Source: Donald Trump’s acceptance speech was both ghastly and absurd. How fitting.

The last four days have been very depressing, I can’t imagine what they would have been like if I hadn’t limited my exposure to a severe degree.  No, I don’t think we are on the verge of total destruction as he describes. Actually we are in infinitely better straits than we were eight years ago. No, not everything is perfect and some have been pretty much left behind in the prosperity but it is nothing that can’t be fixed without totally taking down the system.

At the end of these four days there is one thing that I gained and that is faith.

I have faith:

  • that the vast majority see Trump for what he is and will not buy into his false rants and accusations.
  • that all those he has been alienating  will turn up at the polls in November to officially register their dislike for him.
  • that we will not allow the hatred that permeate so many in that convention center  to result in us throwing away our underlying values and decency. Party over Principles is DEAD WRONG.
  • that most of us embrace our diversity as a nation as a good thing, not something to be shut down.
  • that we will overthrow the GOP propagated fear that surrounds us.

For these reasons I have vowed not to worry about the coming election. We will continue to live up to our dreams and principles despite a narcissist egomaniac who managed to hijack one of our political parties…. he will be gone soon enough…

Hate Personified….

The one glimmer of hope I found in the GOP convention just ended was the number of empty seats in the Cleveland arena. It seems that HATE is not a big selling point for many. But that is what was spewed out in large quantities during their four day travesty.

2016-07-21_10-49-32.pngBut then Lucifer messed with the program. Inexplicably, a charged-up Dr. Ben Carson, a vanquished Trump rival with a narrow range of vision, was given prime time real estate to pull out phrases that meant something only to a slab of the Republican base. He abandoned his prepared remarks. He implied that Hillary Clinton was in a league with the devil. Her hero, he said, was Saul Alinsky, dropping the name of an obscure socialist labor organizer as if he were Bono….

Christie had the audience cheering, over and over, “Lock her up, Lock her up.” His speech was mean, and over the top, and it violated the norms of politics, but his party knows that the only way their nominee can win is if millions of Americans who plan to vote for her decide instead that her conduct in office disqualifies her from being president. For what Republicans needed to do, it was effective. And many, many fewer people saw it than who might have.

Source: An unconventional disaster for Donald Trump

2016-07-21_10-51-11.pngI  have faith that hate is not the primary agenda for the mass who usually vote Republican. Yes, they have conservative principles that I might disagree with, some even strongly, but I am convinced that they are loving people who see hate as a vitriol destruction of their valued principles rather than a politically winning strategy. Most of them do NOT put their party above their principles.

I have hope that come November 5 Mr. Trump and his fellow hate-mongers will quickly slide into the losing annals of history and the “real” Republicans will then begin  to recapture their party. What we saw for the last four days has nothing to do with conservative principles. NOTHING…. I hope that is clear to many who usually vote Republican…

Now it is on the the Democratic convention next week. It will be interesting to compare it to what we just endured.  In my mind ANYTHING would be better…

What’s Wrong With These Pictures…

 

The pictures above are six different views of the floor of the 2016 GOP Convention. Can you figure out what is wrong with them? Go ahead and click on any of the pictures to see a large view; maybe that will help.

2016-07-20_10-25-11Let me give you a hint:

  • One-third of U.S. citizens are people of color.
  • How many of that population do you find in all these pictures?

I didn’t look at absolutely every face but I could only find one out the hundreds shown there.  Maybe that is a primary reason why the GOP is in the straits they are. The GOP, especially today’s version, is all about exclusion!  Keep them out; BUILD A WALL..   If Donald Trump is now the face of the GOP it seems likely that George W. Bush’s premonition that he will be the last Republican president will ring true in the coming years.  I just hope whatever replaces them is more inclusive and welcoming but in reality that is a very low bar.

I would love to have had another choice than Hillary. Although she is infinitely more qualified for the Oval Office than her opponent, in some ways they are very much alike.  Sadly it is definitely the lesser of two evils this time around… Hopefully things will become 20/20  for 2020.

 

 

This Country Is Bigger Than Any Two Parties.

The foundation of RJsCorner is based on the life and philosophy of Will Rogers. So, I think it is time to inject his wisdom into our current political scene. We need something to make sense of all the foolishness. (“foolishness” is the most polite word I could come up with.)  I have been around for many presidential campaigns but this one seems to take the cake for the most absurd. They just keep getting dirtier and dirtier. Here is Will quote..

Will Rogers 6“This country is a thousand times bigger than any two men in it, or any two parties in it. These big politicians are so serious about themselves and their parties.

This country has gotten where it is in spite of politics, not by the aid of it. That we have carried as much political bunk as we have and still survived shows we are a super-nation.

If by some divine act of Providence we could get rid of both parties and hired some good men, like any other big business does, why we would be sitting pretty.”

 Will Rogers, 1 November 1932

As Will says this country is a thousand times bigger than all the politicians combined.  I do agree that there is too much power in Washington DC but who can take charge of it if we push those yahoos out.  I also agree with Will that we need some “good” people  to do it. Some say Donald Trump since he is a political novice is the person to do that but I just can’t get my mind wrapped around that concept.

Donald Trump who has declared financial bankruptcy four time and abandoned marriages almost as many is not the person I want to represent our country. Simply speaking, he does not have the temperament to make critical decisions during these chaotic times!  That seems all too obvious to me when I see him irrationally ranting about so many things. A judge who can’t make decisions because he is of Mexican descent is an example. I can’t imagine what he would do if he is faced with a world wide crisis.

I do agree with Will that we need an outsider to bring some sanity back into our government but there are probably thousands of others who are infinitely more qualified to do that than Mr. Trump.  What does it take for a “good” man or woman to get control pf the current political  environment?

Mr. Trump is not the scariest person in my current thinking.  What really scares me are those citizens who think he is the answer to our problems. Have we as an electorate become so illiterate in decision making processes to fall for the hype of a carnival hawker con artist.  That is what really scares me about the presidential season.  I truly pray that my confidence in the rest of us being a thousand times bigger than the candidates proves true come November 5.

Convention Report — Republican’s Vitriol Hatred For Hillary…

I admit that I haven’t watched much of the GOP convention. I just don’t have the stomach for it I guess. But what I have seen and read is disgusting. The vitriol hatred for someone is not becoming of America. Of course you don’t have to like your party’s opponent in an campaign cycle but to spew pure hatred is almost evil in my mind.  Especially when you do it in the name of God!

We knew for days there were going to be heaping helpings of Hillary-hatred served up to the crowd at the Republican National Convention. After all, if there’s one thing that brings together establishment Republicans and tea partiers, supply-siders and neo-cons, values voters and Ayn Rand acolytes, it’s that they all hate Hillary Clinton. They don’t just think she has bad ideas on policy, or that she can’t match the limitless integrity and honesty of their nominee, or that she wouldn’t manage the federal government with sufficient dexterity. They hate her, in a deep and primal way that goes beyond anything logical or rational, much less anything having to do with issues or the challenges of the presidency….

The weird thing is, the person among them who hates Clinton the least may be Donald Trump himself. Before he started running for president, he called Clinton a friend and sang her praises to the media. But just as he intuited that the path to victory lay not in the purest expression of conservative ideology or the assemblage of concrete policy plans but in a campaign of angry white nationalism, he realized that loathing for Clinton was a powerful force just begging to be unleashed.And unleashed it most certainly is. The question now is how much farther it will go.

Source: Republican hatred of Hillary Clinton has taken a harrowing turn

My last sentence before the comment above is what perhaps stunned me the most. The hatred spewed by a South Carolina pastor toward Hillary was done in the name of Jesus!  Again and again during that abomination he told everyone to hate Hillary in the name of Jesus.   I wonder how many more people were turned away from the peace loving lessons of Jesus because of these words?

Last night was supposed to be about “Making America Great Again” but in reality it was nothing but a HATE fest. I hear that even George W. Bush made the statement that he wonders if he will be the last Republican president.  Hatred as seen on that convention stage does nothing but taint the soul. Given how things are going with the GOP maybe we all should pray that Bush’s thoughts become reality…

 

 

Fear On Steroids!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

2016-07-19_07-57-18.png

Thanks to Walt Handelsam for summing up the perspective of the convention currently taking place in Cleveland Ohio.

For the last couple of decades fear has always taken center stage in the GOP philosophy and it is certainly THE primary topic so far for this latest GOP convention. It doesn’t matter that viewing our times from an historical perspective show these times to be rather peaceful. Yes, there are the isolated events that a couple of decades ago would never have gotten national attention. 24/7 news is constantly searching out the “blood events” as they know that what sells soap for their advertisers.

We all understand the reality of our own eventual mortality, even if we try not to think about it too much. But if you tuned into the first night of the Republican National Convention on Monday evening, you were reassured that your demise is right around the corner. Your children, too, are probably going to be murdered some time soon, as is everyone else you love and the very country in which we live. Though the official theme of the evening was “Making America Safe Again,” it might better have been called “We’re All Gonna Die — Trump ’16!”…

But it seems that using calm and measured restraint while considering the state of the world is, well, for wimps. True strength is to be found in abject panic and fear-mongering, in the insistence that everything is spiraling out of control and the only thing that can save us is the wisdom and firm hand of a man who, when asked whom he consults for advice on foreign policy, says, “I’m speaking with myself, number one, because I have a very good brain and I’ve said a lot of things.” This man may not know what the nuclear triad is, but he did bring the world Trump Steaks. I feel safer already.

Source: The GOP’s unbridled convention fear-mongering

I am not trying to downplay the seriousness of today’s problems. I will admit that ISIS and those who are causing havoc in the name of ISIS is very troublesome on the world stage but in reality it dwarfs in relationship to the number killed each year by our obsession with guns.  ISIS certainly needs to be addressed strongly but it is really not much of a threat to our daily lives here in the U.S.  It seems in my lifetime we have been in a perpetual war with one ideology or another so nothing is new there.

I know it is a shallow thought but I want to cite FDR’s famous words “We have nothing to fear but fear itself”.  When he said those words we were in much more dire straits than we are now. The Republican party has latched onto fear as a way to prevent  the deterioration of their party. They think if they can convince enough people to be irrationally fearful they can maintain their stranglehold on power.  They are clinging to anything that will prevent their downfall, especially given their current choice for president.

I suspect that the remainder of this convention will also be about fear and exclusion. But since Donald Trump is an extreme narcissist much of it will also be about him I’m sure.  I wonder what the atmosphere will be like next week for the other party’s get together??

Take My Governor…. Please

Ok, I admit that there are probably a lot of you who don’t get the above quote. It is a play off of Henney Youngman’s famous quote “Take my wife… please”. You had to be around in the 1950s and 60 to remember “take my wife”.  This isn’t really the topic of today’s post but I wanted to start it out with a little humor.  The funny kind, not he weird kind that will come. Here is a quote from Wiki:

Youngman’s wife, Sadie Cohen, was often the butt of his jokes (“My wife said to me, ‘For our anniversary I want to go somewhere I’ve never been before.’ I said, ‘Try the kitchen!'”, or “my wife’s cooking is fit for a king. (gesturing as if feeding an invisible dog) Here King, here King!” Also, “Last night my wife said the weather outside was fit for neither man nor beast, so we both stayed home.”) but in reality the two were very close, with Sadie often accompanying her husband on his tours. Youngman remained married for over sixty years until his wife’s death in 1987, after a prolonged illness.

Source: Henny Youngman – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Ok, now on to the weird humor. I don’t know if you have heard or not that Donald Trump picked the governor of my State as his running mate.  I know he wasn’t Trump’s first choice, or even tenth I imagine, be he did announce it yesterday.   I th2016-07-16_11-16-55.pngink he really wanted to make one of his kid’s VP but couldn’t decide which one.  I don’t know what Mr. Trump had in mind with this pick but I sure am glad to hear that Pence won’t be governor of Indiana come next year.

But then again he was probably going to lose anyway but this is more of a sure deal. Mr Pence is not particularly  liked, even by many conservatives. He was no better than even in the polls against his rival and when a Republican isn’t several points ahead in Indiana it doesn’t look good for him.  If you remember Pence at all it will probably be his stands against minorities, especially homosexuals.  If he has trouble winning in a very conservative State how is he going to help Trump?

The Trump/Pence ticket acronym is a good one T/P.  There are already many jokes about it. “TP– put it in the toilet where it belongs” is the best one so far. I’m sure with  Pence being on the ticket it shores up the ultra-conservative vote but that seems already a sure thing for Trump. After the media get down with Pence there probably won’t be an independent, let alone a Democrat that will vote for him.   Since the only minorities that the GOP even likes is their own party this choice just doesn’t make sense to me.  But that is actually a good thing.  I just can’t stomach the idea of Trump with his finger on the nuclear button or even in the Oval Office… Yeh for Tp,  couldn’t live without it….

It really is this simple: Donald Trump should not be president of the United States

I have some pretty strong feeling about the Trump candidacy but no where close to the author of the source below. But I do share is simple conclusion,

TRUMP SHOULD NOT BE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES!!

Did I shout that loudly enough for you?

Since he clinched the nomination, Trump has managed the seemingly impossible by becoming even more erratic and even less presidential th2016-06-10_09-01-56.pngan he was during the primaries. The insults, the transparent lies, the racist taunting and bullying, the demagoguery, the narcissistic self-obsession, the incapacity to take a position and stick to it, the failure to raise funds and manage a campaign — the man has no business running anything of public consequence, let alone the government of the most powerful nation on the planet.It really is that simple: Donald Trump should not be president of the United States. If there is even a small chance of successfully deposing him at the convention — an act that, if it worked, would deprive him of the means to compete in the general election — it should be undertaken. The alternative is complicity in a politically reckless and blatantly irresponsible endeavor: the attempted election of a candidate who deserves to lose.

Source: It really is this simple: Donald Trump should not be president of the United States

I don’t think Mr Trump is an idiot but his actions certainly indicate that.  I have an idea that he really doesn’t want to be president so he is saying the most outrageous things to finally turn people away.  The problem with that is that the more outrageous he rants the more his “base” cheers!! I just can’t fathom what the thoughts are behind that group.

Are his supporters so pissed off about almost everything that they want to take down the U.S into flaming oblivion? They didn’t get their share so they are hoping that the next time around they will be luckier.  Or do they actually believe that he can “fix” anything? Either way that group scares me to tarnation.  We have had a good 240 year existence, is that about to end?  I don’t know but I kind of hope we can hold it together at least as long as I am walking this earth🙂.   I don’t expect I have more than a decade or so left, can we at least hold it together that long? I certainly would appreciate it…

Great Britain’s reign lasted about that length of time and so did the Roman empire.  Have we run our course? Is it time for another country/belief system to take over. I can see China is chomping at the bits to have their time at the throttle.  Would communism prove to be more long lasting than capitalism? Maybe we will soon have a chance to test that out.

Is Trump the beginning of the end for the USA and its form of democracy? Is this where the wings fall off our soaring aspirations of diversity? I don’t think I will be around when it happens but they say that everything on the Internet will always be around so maybe these words to serve as an “I told you so” after I am dead and buried.

I didn’t count them but this post probably has the most question marks of any I have written.  :)

On The Wrong Side Of Yet Another Issue…

It seems that the GOP is on the wrong side of yet another issue important to U.S. voters. 85% of us want congress to act to keep guns out of the hands of terrorists. So what does the GOP do?  As usual they prevent it from happening.

2016-06-24_07-38-56.pngSenate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Thursday cut the legs out from a bipartisan effort to keep suspected terrorists from buying guns.

In doing so, McConnell, a master of the Senate’s arcane rules, provided cover for vulnerable Republicans who wanted to be seen as supporting the effort, but did not want to cross the National Rifle Association.

“The scenario that Sen. McConnell set up was textbook McConnell,” said Brian Darling, a former Senate Republican aide.

McConnell had promised a vote this week to Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) on her bipartisan measure barring people on two key terrorist watch lists from buying guns or explosives.

But what he scheduled was not what she had in mind.

Instead of setting up a vote to add the Collins legislation to the pending appropriations bill on the Senate floor, McConnell scheduled a vote to discard it.

The Collins bill survived that test in a 46-52 vote, but it fell far short of winning 60 votes, the threshold necessary to overcome procedural hurdles.

The result allows Republicans to argue that no other action is necessary.

“It didn’t have sixty votes. That’s what a motion to table does. It demonstrates where the votes are,” said Don Stewart, McConnell’s spokesman.

SOURCE: McConnell quashes Senate effort on guns | TheHill

I have heard their argument that the proposed bill might prevent someone who is not a terrorist from purchasing as many guns  and ammunition as he wants. The GOP seem to be willing to sacrifice thousands of us to prevent that from happening!

Sooner or later the ones still clinging to the ultra conservative cause will finally realize that they are riding a dead horse and abandon it.  Our obsession with guns has resulted in  many times more deaths than 911 ever did.

Sooner or later the ones still clinging to the ultra conservative cause will realize that the NRA is nothing more than a lobbying organization for the gun manufacturers.  I will admit that it was brilliant to get 5 million people to purchase memberships so it can be called a club but it is really no different than any other lobbying organization in that it protects those who pay their salaries and that is the ones who profit from gun sales.  The NRA membership make up about 1.5% of the U.S. population, so how do they yield so much power. They do it by attacking viciously anyone opposing them. Sounds kind of like one of our presidential candidates doesn’t it?

A lot of stuff needs to change in the world today and much of it is right here in our country.   Before closing this post I need to get in a little snippet about Great Britain leaving the EU which is yet another conservative cause that is simply wrong headed in my mind. We, as a world, need to be coming together instead of splitting apart. It is the only way we will ever see the 22nd century.  Our world is just too small now for all of us to go our own ways…..

The Blob… aka The Bush Doctrine…

The Blob is an interesting description for our foreign policy in the last 15 years.  I like the description but I think it should be more appropriately named the Bush Doctrine.  Invade foreign countries and install a docile client state…

For nearly 15 years now, America has been in continuous war in the Middle East, and for about the last 10 of those years, the U.S. foreign policy establishment (a.k.a. “the Blob2016-06-23_12-01-24“) has been consumed with narrow tactical questions. Both the invasion of Afghanistan and Iraq had strategic objectives — defeat al Qaeda and install a docile imperial client state, respectively. The U.S. failed at both, of course, and the latter was monstrous in the extreme, but they were both at least comprehensible.

But since then, the focus of American foreign policy thinking has shrunk to a pencil’s width. Endless analysis has focused on counterinsurgency doctrine, the best use of drone strikes, under what circumstances special forces should be deployed, and so on….

By contrast, there is vanishingly little discussion of what all that force is supposed to achieve. Instead, there is only the bedrock post-9/11 view of the Blob: That if there are Islamist militants anywhere (but especially in the Middle East), then the U.S. military should be trying to kill them somehow. I suggest that if the U.S. ever wants to stop squandering hundreds of billions of dollars in an endless military campaign that causes more problems than it solves, a return to strategic thinking will be a necessary first step.

SOURCE: How America stopped thinking strategically about the Middle East

I know some of you young guys out there don’t know about “The Blob” so maybe I need to educate you a little. The Blob was a movie made in 1958 starring a very young Steve McQueen. It was about a shapeless mass that was trying to take over the world…

Yeah that sounds like the Bush Doctrine to me, a shapeless mass.  But like Vietnam of my generation we failed miserably. I don’t know a lot of the history of the Middle East but I do know that there have been warring factions battling each other for at least a thousand years there. They just don’t seem to know how to get along with each other. Many among the current day terrorists are Muslims but the fact is that 98% of their victims are also Muslim. If we were to just leave them alone I expect that number would quickly get back to 99+%.

I hope the next president has some more common sense and is able to think strategically  but given the present choices I think we will have to wait a few more years for that.  We need a strategic thinker in the White House.  I was hoping it would be our current president would fill that bill but since he seems to love his drones more than strategy he disappointed me greatly in that regard.

 

 

Directly Responsible…

2016-06-17_10-25-48.pngSTAND BACK… this is one of my flaming posts!!! 

I guess since a nut job is now at the top of the GOP everyone else in that party feels the need to follow suit. John McCain included. I can’t believe I once thought this guy was different from the rest.

When Donald Trump said yesterday that President Obama was “directly responsible” for the deadliest mass-shooting in American history, it was the latest evidence of a candidate who’s abandoned any sense of propriety or decency. Wait, did I say Donald Trump? I meant John McCain.Republican Sen. John McCain on Thursday blamed President Barack Obama for the deadly shooting in Orlando that killed 49 club goers.

He said the president is “directly responsible for it because” of his “utter failures” in Iraq.“ Barack Obama is directly responsible for it because when he pulled everybody out of Iraq, al Qaeda went to Syria and became ISIS and ISIS is what it is today thanks to Barack Obama’s failures, utter failures by pulling everybody out of Iraq thinking that conflicts end just because we leave,” McCain told reporters on Capitol Hill, according to audio obtained by NBC News.

Source: John McCain: President Obama is ‘directly responsible’ for Orlando | MSNBC

McCain is in a tough election within his own party so I guess he thinks he needs to be a Trump radical.  I know he later said he didn’t really mean what he said but like so much in life once its out there you can’t take it back.

I don’t know where the latest shooter got his guns two days before he shot over one hundred people but he managed to do so because of the utter rejection of any sane gun laws by the entire GOP. The NRA speaks and they all stand at attention waiting their orders.  Given that Mr. McCain is from Arizona which is a State where anyone 18 or older can buy  and secretly carry any gun anywhere he wants, Mr McCain and the folks who passed those laws maybe more directly responsible than those in other areas.

Let’s put the blame for all of this where it belongs and that is with the previous Oval Office holder and his party. They got us into these horrible wars in the Middle East.  The GOP spent trillions of off-the-books dollars trying to correct that first grievous mistake but only managed to dig the hole even deeper?  If there is any “direct responsibility” here Mr. McCain should be looking in the mirror not at our current president.

Enough said…..

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It’s Got To Change…

2016-06-07_08-02-26.pngI am definitely hoping, praying even, that the GOP is decisively rejected in the coming election. With Trump at the top of the ticket, and my faith in the sanity of most of us in the U.S. , I can see that very possibly happen.  If it happens it will finally turn the Supreme Court away from it radically conservative base and allow for fundamental change to happen.  The first thing that needs to change is not about gun control but instead about our elections process.

In 2012, Democratic candidates for Congress received more votes than Republican candidates. For the first time in 40 years, the party that received the most votes failed to take control of the House. The people did vote for candidates who believed in gun-control reforms. Obama had it backward: it’s the Republican mapmakers who gerrymandered our democracy so effectively after the GOP’s historic 2010 victory who have made it hard for the voters to affect elections. The strategy was dubbed REDMAP, for Redistricting Majority Project, and it was brilliant in its execution. With $30 million or less than the cost of some losing Senate races — smartly spent in the right districts in the right states — Republican strategists turned the House of Representatives red for a decade, and maybe longer.

SOURCE: The GOP screwed themselves: The brilliant gerrymander that gave Republicans the Congress — and created Donald Trump – Salon.com

Computers are great things that have advanced our society in numerous ways but that power is also used by the dark side.  It is used for elected officials to chose their voters and that is definitely not what the framers of our country intended. In previous posts on this topic I have showed you the utter stupidity of how congressional maps are drawn. With enough computing power now available making sure that your guy gets elected is almost a sure thing.  Majority rule is no longer valid when it comes to electing  so many of our federal office holders.

It seems the only way that will happen is to take gerrymandering to the Supreme Court and declare it unconstitutional, which it surely is. We need to either take the ability to set up congressional districts away from State governments or strictly regulate how they are determined at least for federal elections.  If we put some sense back into this process the will of the people will once again be accomplished.

Yes, there are simply too many guns in the hands of too many unstable people in this country and that must  change but the more damaging practice of rigging elections strikes at the bedrock of our democracy. It has got to end and end soon…

 

Party Over Principles… Again…

Even though I detest Mr. Ryan’s adoration of Ayn Rand I have come to gain some respect for him in recent months. He “seemed” to want to put partisan politics aside and find common ground with the other party for the good of the people. I admired him for standing on principle and not endorsing a megalomaniac for president. That respect came to a screeching halt yesterday but I kind of expected it all along.  It is hard for an Ayn Rand wolf to turn into a shepherd.

2016-06-03_07-53-44“It’s no secret that he and I have our differences,” Mr. Ryan said in the column he submitted to The Gazette in Janesville. “I won’t pretend otherwise. And when I feel the need to, I’ll continue to speak my mind. But the reality is, on the issues that make up our agenda, we have more common ground than disagreement.”…

Mr. Ryan criticized her in his column, writing: “A Clinton White House would mean four more years of liberal cronyism and a government more out for itself than the people it serves. Quite simply, she represents all that our agenda aims to fix.”

Ending weeks of reluctance to embrace his party’s presumptive nominee, Speaker Paul D. Ryan endorsed Donald J. Trump for president on Thursday in a modest but unequivocal backing of a candidate whose views Mr. Ryan has frequently condemned….

In a column in his hometown newspaper in Janesville, Wis., Mr. Ryan said that recent conversations with Mr. Trump had convinced him that the billionaire developer will help advance the conservative agenda that the speaker is trying to introduce….

“Speaker Ryan’s abject surrender makes it official,” he said in an email. “The GOP is Trump’s party now.”

SOURCE: Speaker Paul Ryan, After an Awkward Courtship, Endorses Donald Trump – The New York Times

Putting party over principles seems to be a unattainable task in the 21st century. The two parties in Washington simple hate each other for who they are, not just what they stand for.   It was interesting that the speaker chose is small town newspaper to give his endorsement.

Finding common ground is what our American democracy has been all about for its first two centuries. I kind of think that Mr. Ryan’s common ground with Hillary is actually stronger than with Trump but he just doesn’t have the guts to admit that fact.  Party over principles is his game and like most of the rest of them has always been so.  Beating the competition, perceived or real, is what it is all about in the American agenda now. Grievously common good seems to be long gone in our national politics.

I don’t know, maybe all this stuff with Trump is just a game he is playing but do I want a president who even plays those types of games.  Conniving, disrespect, ranting, and fear mongering are not the qualities I want in “my” president. I hope that is also the case for the large majority of the rest of us.  Winning the game should take a back seat to the common good as far as I am concerned.  Always has been for me and always will be…

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