Sick and Tired of Trump, Trump, Trump

You may have noticed I don’t post often these days.  It’s been over six weeks since the last one.  However, I still pay attention to the loonyness spawned by Trump’s fabrications, that world he has created of “alternative facts”,  as accidentally coined by Kellyanne Conway, his number one whirling dervish of spin.

Despite still paying attention, I’m trying to lessen my addiction because so much of it is a waste of time.  They keep flashing “breaking news” and it is seldom real news.   It usually has already been broken earlier, or wasn’t of much value anyway.

To sum up the obvious.   Over the last two years of Trump’s mucking things up and muddling our once generally shared sense of reality with his fabrications and lies, while showing few signs of basic human decency, he has produced a favorable rating on his presidency from 46% of us, according to a recent poll.  An even more recent poll shows 50% of the country believe Trump’s mantra of “witch hunt.”

His propaganda campaign has worked.   If you keep saying “no collusion” and “witch hunt” and “fake news” incessantly it can sink in, especially when you stress that the press is the “enemy of the people”.   At one point, he told one of his throngs of the mesmerized:   “Believe me, not what you read or see.”  The approach of a budding dictator.

It was estimated the other day that the next election will come down to some six per cent of those who will tip the scale.   That seems a decent guess.  I just don’t know who those six percent are and what will actually tip the scales for them, and neither does anyone else.  So what’s all the chatter about, other than to give news pundits well paying jobs.

This morning I watched a group of MSNBC usuals actually spending time dissecting Trump’s twitter rant this weekend, as if it meant anything other that he is losing it more and more each day.

Sooooooo………  I’m not going to say much more until I start seeing things substantial materialize as opposed to the glut of speculation mostly based on unnamed sources.  I want to see results from the Mueller probe, and the Southern District of New York, and that state’s attorney general, and the multiple House committees who are trying to make up for the lack of oversight of the president and his administration by the previously Republican controlled House.

Sounds like a witch hunt, doesn’t it.   But I’m guessing that these many investigations will eventually reveal Trump for what he is and always has been, a con artist, a snake oil salesman, a bully who has always been only concerned about what’s good for him and his family and not what is good for anyone else.  Certainly not about our country as a whole.

A witch hunt isn’t always a bad thing.   Sometimes it actually causes the demise of a real witch, like in the Wizzard of Oz.


P. S. – One Trump related thing I do want to write about is the strange situation known as Kellyanne Conway’s marriage to George Conway, who has become one of Trump’s most scathing critics.   If you are not aware of this curious situation, no worries, I will illuminate it for you over the next week.

 

 

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A COMPLETE GUIDE TO TRUMPTOPIAN LOGIC

Borrowed from the Daily Kos

Republicans on Climate Change

AND CAPTAIN TRUMP ON JUST ABOUT EVERYTHING.

Fox News Found Trump’s Border Crisis Dubious, too. Surprised?

Since the government shutdown continues, with more pressure put on both sides, I figure it is useful to support my blasting of Trump’s phony border crisis with comments from Fox News.  I mean the real news, not the propaganda side of the network headed up by Sean Hannity.

Fox News  is a four letter word, so to speak, to most liberals.   I share some of that feeling.  However, few liberals seem to realize there are also serious news people at Fox whose work equals the best around in my opinion.   News Director Sheppard Smith and prime time interviewer Chris Wallace head up that list.

To give you a sense of  how each stands, Smith has said he didn’t think he would be able to work on the opinion side of the network, while Hannity has called Smith likable but “clueless”.  Meaning, I guess, he doesn’t feel comfortable with “alternative facts.”

I believe Smith actually tries to live up to the “fair and balanced” motto that appears a joke when Hannity and his ilk speak.   And Wallace is arguably the most probing interviewer on television.  His interview of Vladmir Putin was the toughest I’ve ever seen (google it), and such a stark contrast to toady Trump’s fawning over Putin, impressed that the ruthless dictator “denied strongly” Russian interference in our elections.

I like both Smith and Wallace enough to usually tape their programs,  Smith’s at noon PST week days and Wallace’s Fox Sunday News at 11:00 or 4:00 PST Sunday afternoons.

Now let’s look at how they reacted to Trump’s fictional facts about the border emergency.

 

Theatre of the Absurd: The Trumped Up Border Crisis

It’s a new year but the only thing new about the president is his willingness to place even more weight on the phony facts he and his rabid right wing cohorts, like Anne Coulter and Rush Limbaugh, have made up.

Some of these “alternative facts” support the idea that we now need a southern border wall so much that Trump has been willing to shut down much of the federal government for weeks, displacing hundreds of thousands of workers and weakening key services in hopes the Democrats will submit to his demands for wall funding.

That’s Trump’s idea of deal making:  You succumb to his demands or get blamed for an unwillingness to negotiate.

Trump hasn’t acted like the wall was an emergency through his first two years in office.  It’s an emergency now because the likes of Limbaugh and Coulter are calling him a phony for failing to act.  Since he can’t get his way with Congress,  calling the building of a wall an emergency may be his only way to escape the box he has placed himself in.

The matter would likely head straight to the courts, the government could be reopened and Trump can tell Rush and Anne and his base in general he really tried.

We don’t need a southern wall.  Trump needs one to quiet his critical supporters.  The Democrats are right to refuse to succumb, for the wall makes no sense.

Here are a few of facts from government sources that undermine his arguments for a wall:

1)  The overwhelming quantity of drugs come across the border at points of entry not through the wilderness that Trump wants to fence off.  Better search methods are needed, not a fence.

2)   Despite Trump’s claim of thousands of terrorist suspects coming across the southern border, federal government reports suggest it was more like six in the first half of 2018.  Yes, six.  Forty-some came across the northern border that nobody talks about.   Should we build a wall there, too?  And first?

3)  Most foreign terrorist suspects come into the country legally and then just overstay their visas.

4)  Since 9/11, the large majority of terrorists attacks in the U. S. have come from home grown types who have become radicalized not from foreigners infiltrating our borders.

Certainly we could use better border security, not to mention a more humane way of treating  the large increase of those simply seeking political asylum, but Trump’s wall seems to address none of these issues.  It is a fake answer to our real border problems, not only a wasted effort but one that distracts from real needs to be addressed.

The five billion or so dollars he is demanding to start the wall is really, just a start.  Estimates from 40 to 80 billion or more have been made for the total cost.  So, this fake answer to a phony problem is also going to cost us a fortune.

By the way, I watched a clip of Trump at the border being given a briefing by border security.  The officer was showing slides of a tunnel they recently discovered under a section of the wall already built.  Trump just sat there nodding as if unaware the border agent had just provided one more tunnel undermining his argument for a wall.

No matter to him.  It is all a Trump fabrication to shore up his base with a false solution to a mischaracterized problem.

 

 

Thankful for a House Controlled by Democrats

I haven’t posted for about a month, not because I have had nothing I wanted to say but I have had too much.  Too many things happening, too much speculation, too many falsehoods by the president.   But I have been paying attention.

If I were content to just make up things like the resident of the oval office does so often, it would be a lot easier.   Paying attention to facts while trying to say something about them is much harder.  Especially when the president does his best daily to obscure the truth through his twisted portrayals of what is happening and what a wonderful job he has done.

In his view, he led his party to a great victory this fall because they captured a couple of new seats in the Senate, which is a plus for their side I admit.   But he ignores inconvenient facts like the nearly 40 seats in the House of Representatives lost by Republicans, which has caused them to lose control of that body.  Of course, he blames those House members that lost, not the fact that in their districts he had lost popularity.

Today I simply want to  say how relieved I am that the Democrats took control of the House of Representatives.   For starters, the Mueller investigation seems likely to be much better protected from the president.  Come January Democrats will have the power of the subpoena as well as the ability to pass laws in the House.  They won’t continue to be voices in the wilderness.

Of course, the Republican controlled Senate and the president will be able to put checks on those efforts, but it will be a more fair fight.  We could call it a victory for our system of checks and balances, which in itself figures to halt some of the president’s worst instincts, half-baked plans and political stunts.

I breathe a deep sigh of gratitude at the thought.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Overwhelmed by Trump’s Unfettered Lying and Worried About the Election

“People will believe a big lie sooner than a little one; repeat it frequently enough people will believe it.”

Adolph Hitler

Yes, it is time to bring out the risky Hitler card.  No.  I don’t see Trump as a budding mass murderer, but when it comes to unfettered lying the comparison seems more than fair, especially in recent days.   Trump is in overdrive to produce that big lie by election day.

I haven’t written since my failed judgement that Judge Kavanaugh would lose his battle for confirmation, not because that devastated me – I figured my prediction was chancy – but because I have been overwhelmed by the wave of subsequent events and Trump’s misleading statements and lies about them.

The issue these days is often not really what occurred, but the ability of one side or the other to shape the narrative.   In the Kavanaugh hearing the Democrats saw Blasey Ford as the victim, and her testimony was very convincing, but by the end Republicans had made Kavanaugh the victim of a sneaky last minute attack.   The odd situation made it seem like a trial of Kavanaugh, and as such one is innocent until proven guilty.

That wins the narrative battle, as indicated by Trump often sighting Kavanaugh and the Democrats not mentioning Blasey Ford.  That event seems to have revved up more Republicans and those “tweeners” than those of us who are already never Trumpers.  We just became sicker and angrier.

But what is most striking at the moment is the untethered flourish of hyperbole, fabrications and distortions – yes, even more than usual – that Trump is churning out now.  He just makes things up by the hour, such as the middle class tax cut his team is hoping to pass before the election, with no evidence of that, perhaps because there are not enough days before the election to pass anything.  It just sounds good.

The lie provides one more mental sugar plum for voters heading to the poles.  There is no stated progress with North Korea on denuclearization, either, but he keeps acting as if there were and its better than his ranting.   So, one more sugar plum….

Trump creates problems and then boasts about fixing them.  But it is the image of his fixing the problem that sticks in our minds.  He says we should pull out of a missile deal we have with Russia, so now his Security Adviser Bolton is there talking with them.  My guess is he’ll come back with good news, promises of working together.  Another sugar plum.

It is the latest flurry of outright lies that is most Hitleresque, though, such as the image he has created of the caravan of refugees heading here from Central America, an image of terrorists and MS13  and rapists (and lions and tiger and bears, oh my!).  No matter he has no evidence for any of this according to several sources, including Fox News.

Shepard Smith, the director of news there (real news as opposed to the opinion misshapers headed up by Hannity) examined the situation and reported:  “Fox News knows of no evidence to suggest the president is accurate on that matter.”

In doing so, he contradicted the theory of the evil invasion cooked up on Fox and Friends that morning, which quite likely was Trump’s “news source”.   (Read this for some details.)  In case you don’t know, Trump calls the Friends often giving the impression many of his spur of the moment  “insights” originate there.

Over the next two weeks or so Trump will say and do anything to make his administration look good, including more baseless promises and warrant-less accusations.  A recent poll shows Trump with a 47% approval rating and reports of early voting suggest Republicans are off to a better start.

So frankly I am scared that too much of the big lie will be bought by too many.

Bye Bye Judge Kavanaugh

Dear Judge Kavanaugh,

While I do realize your impending demise is hardly a laughing matter, I’m flippant in my title because you brought this personal tragedy on by creating a false choir boy image of yourself in high school and college, a self-portrait that has plenty of holes already reported.  I will be surprised if the FBI does not come up with more this week, even though I fear their efforts will be severely curtailed by White House restrictions as to what are “current credible accusations.”

Your Achilles heel is you drank much more in your teen years than you admit to.  There are several reports to that effect along with the confessional book (titled Wasted) by one of your high school pals, Mark Judge, who describes often drinking back then to the point of “annihilation”.   If he did it often, are we to believe you never got blottoed, never had a at least one memory black out?  You keep insisting on your purity in this regard.  You are clinging to that story like a life vest, but it is really a huge stone.

It is not your teen drinking but your lying about it that will bring you down.  G. W. Bush was a problem drinker, but stopped and did not hide his past.   It is your pinning your integrity on a lie that is going to sink you, even if conclusive evidence of sexual molestation isn’t established this week.

If you will steadfastly lie about this what else might you lie about?

You seemed particularly irked when Democrat senators pushed you on this point of never blacking out, at one point petulantly asking your questioner if she had ever blacked out.   (by the way, petulance is not a good look for an aspiring Supreme court judge…..just saying).

While some of your expressions of anger seemed real, your furious reactions to questions on your drinking excessively seemed more the self-righteous delusion woven by a liar who feels above being questioned.  I recall star pitcher Roger Clemens when he furiously denied the use of steroids to a congressional committee, as if the committee was not giving him his just due for all of his accomplishments.  How dare you question my integrity?  Later he was convicted on several charges of perjury.

For many of us Christine Blasey Ford’s “incredibly credible” testimony was confirmation enough that you should not be confirmed, given the fact she had nothing to gain and much to lose in coming forth.  Your defense against her accusations is that you are too nice, on the one hand, and on the other, you have never drank so much in your entire life as to black out and not remember.

I understand.  You feel you have done so much good over the years since, that it is unfair for this to be brought up, and up, and up again…….  You feel you have earned this spot on the Supreme Court, and all these Democrats want to talk about is your behavior as a teen.   So what if I drank too much back then.  Look at what I have become.  That’s what is important.

But judge, your accomplishments do not erase this lie which you continue to tell.  Even if sexual misconduct is not established this week, what the FBI calls a “lack of candor” figures to haunt you.  The choir boy lie combined with your petulant conspiracy laden defense Thursday and Christine Blasey Ford’s indelible testimony figure to prompt at least a few on-the-fence senators  to tip the vote against you.  And it will only take a couple of the in-betweeners to vote no.

You have said this hearing has “destroyed your life.”  Sadly, I think it may be true, but look long in the mirror before pinning the fatal fault on everyone but you.