The Impeachable Hypocrisy Of The Congressional Democrats

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I’m proud to be one of the prescient millions who foretold the almost immediate crash and burn of Donald Trump in the White House. If a wink is as good as a nod to a blind man, even the blind could see this coming from the onslaught of winking eyes as far back as the primaries. Make no mistake, Trump will turn the heat up on the Republicans so high they’ll have to doff their ongoing participation in providing cover for him and stand out alone in the cold light of common sense and allow themselves to be blown toward the inevitable: either the impeachment and conviction or the resignation of Donald John Trump, destined to have the shortest tenure in the White House of a tenant (I will not refer to him as the president) who was not forced to leave due to serious illness or death.

But, being the faIr-minded Farlefty that I am, it’s now time to out the Democrats for the partisan, opportunistic hypocrites that they are. Granted, Trump has committed more impeachable offenses in the shortest period of time after moving into the White House than all the other real presidents. But, his treasonous, unethical, and illegal transgressions haven’t cost any lives—so far. Contrast that with the treasonous, unethical and illegal transgressions of George W. Bush, Dick Cheney, and Donald Rumsfeld. They conspired to concoct a lie that would not only result in thousands (and counting) of American troops and the deaths of millions (and counting) Iraqi troops and citizens, and led to the total destabilization of the Persian Gulf, Mediterranean Sea and the Arabian Peninsula regions. They assassinated Saddam Hussein without having a single coherent and workable plan in place on how to fill the governmental vacuum left by his death.

And I said this was all built upon multiple lies, right? And from those lies they started multiple wars, decimating an entire part of the world for their own personal gains and those of their business cronies. Yet, in 2006, with the Democrats once again the controlling majority after winning the midterm elections, Nancy Pelosi made the announcement that impeachment of Bush &n Co. was off the table. The Democrats weren’t even actually in power until January 2007 yet she still kicked the shovel out of all liberals’ hands. And Harry Reid was right there with his foot on the shovel to make sure it remained impotently on the ground.

So, all this public outcry calling for the impeachment of Trump over his dangerously immature, illegal and treasonous activities has a very hollow ring to it. I want the guy out of the White House and relegated to an existence of public disgrace and humiliation, as well as the butt of stand-up comic and late night show host jokes for the rest of his miserable and hopefully less wealthy and connected life. But again, the high crimes and misdemeanors he’s perpetrated up to this point don’t even rise up to the level of the Bush administration outing Valerie Plame as a CIA operative through a Robert Novak column just to wreak revenge on her hubby Joe Wilson. But I digress.

So, save me from all this self-righteous chest thumping of the Democrats (albeit rightfully) demanding Trump’s head on a platter held by Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. They had and blew their chance at positioning themselves as the sole guardians of the Constitution and safeguarding our democracy and governmental institutions. And following on the heels of the Republicans impeaching Bill Clinton over virtually nothing, they not only wimped out, they sold us out.  Yes, Trump deserves to be both impeached and convicted. But spare us the dramatic posturing and the self-righteous indignation, Democrats. You sound just as phony and self-serving as the Republicans back in 1998-99.

Senate Democrats Have A Short Memory When It Comes To Neil Gorsuch

Before the Senate Democrats get too self-righteous in their opposition to Neil Gorsuch’s nomination, let us reflect that back in 2006 they had no such problem being part of a unanimous voice vote that approved his nomination to the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Those senators had to know that someday his name might come up as as SCOTUS nominee but once again Harry Reid played the good little compliant but spineless soldier for George W. Bush.

The Senate Dems knew all about Gorsuch’s right wing, arch strict constructionist viewpoint back then and they were completely cognizant of his mother, who resigned in disgrace and under allegations of corruption (after running the EPA into the ground) in 1983.

This is why I remain totally disgusted with the Democratic Party. As always with the Dems it’s far too little and far too late to be of any help to anyone. Once again they handed total victory to the Republicans last November. Attempting to stand up on their tiny little legs and shout their indignation at all Trump is doing (which their election trouncings made possible) in their tiny little voices just further underscores that there is no longer any viable opposition to the GOP. The Dems may try to saddle all the blame for the certain ruination of our country and possibly the world on Trump. But my their ineptness and corruption amply displayed in the last election, they have no one else to blame but themselves.

Once Again The Senate Republicans Play The Shutdown Game

“The American people‎ should have a voice in the selection of their next Supreme Court Justice. Therefore, this vacancy should not be filled until we have a new President.” – Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell

“Would be unprecedented in recent history for SCOTUS to go year with vacancy. And shameful abdication of our constitutional responsibility,” – Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid on Twitter.

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2016/02/13/senate-unlikely-confirm-obama-supreme-court-nominee/80351274/#.

I predicted this would happen because the Repugnant-cons are entirely predictable in holding SCOTUS hostage, in effect, shutting it down for at least the next year and a half to play partisan politics, gambling that one of the Republican clowns inside the candidate car will find his way into the White House. If Bernie Sanders is elected president and McConnell loses his gamble, would he then try to go for double or nothing by extending the SCOTUS shutdown through 2018 hoping to add even more Republicans to Congress? Let would be his legacy going into 2020 when he will be up for reelection to the Senate.

Now, it is possible that the eight remaining justices will still hear cases already on the Court schedule. Some of the cases might be relatively easy for them to arrive at an unanimous decision, or at least 5-3. But an Affordable Care Act case where the ideological lines are drawn 4-4 with no swing votes to tip the decision one way or the other, well, what happens then? Kick it back down to a lower court for it to be kicked back up some time in the near or distant future when the Court is once again at full strength? How many other unheard cases would be sitting smack dab atop the Ideological Divide? This isn’t the Senate. You can’t bring in Joe Biden to cast the tie-breaking vote. This is what I mean by the Republicans shutting down SCOTUS because when it comes to those big, high profile cases concerning gun control or state anti-abortion laws and such, the justices will be able to decide nothing.

Mitch McConnell is claiming that a lame duck president doesn’t speak for the American people, therefore, Obama has no right to name a replacement for the not-so-dearly departed Antonin Scalia. What doesn’t McConnell understand about the Constitution? The one thing Scalia sometimes got right is that you don’t screw with certain sections of it. The president is elected to a four-year term, period. His power and authority are not diminished in his final year. Although Obama’s overall approval rating isn’t great, he still has enough support from these same American people–who voted him into office–to choose a replacement justice that the Senate Republicans should confirm.

But, that’s fine. This is an election year. Let the Republicans play their latest shutdown game again. President Obama and the Democrats should and hopefully will start a major media campaign urging the American people AKA voters to make it loud and clear that the Republicans don’t speak for THEM. That they already spoke for themselves when they reelected Obama president in 2012.

Two Balls On Obama But He’s In Danger Of Striking Out

Obama is again making the same mistake he’s made for almost five years now, and his 42% approval rating shows it. He keeps allowing the GOP frame the debate. Or to use a baseball analogy, the GOP keeps throwing fastballs at him: Obamacare, Benghazi, the VA, Iraq, and he keeps fouling them off or doesn’t even get the bat off his shoulder. He hit a grand slam with the killing of bin Laden but didn’t even hit it out of the infield with the capture of Ahmed Abu Khatallah.

Once again, Obama has got to take the field and start throwing fastballs of his own. Where is the GOP most vulnerable? Where are the jobs? Yes, Obama introduced the American Jobs Act in 2011, which was killed off by both Harry Reid in the Senate and the Republicans in both chambers of Congress. He’s avoided introducing anything of substance because of the advice he continually gets from his brain trust: Don’t introduce anything that the Republicans can embarrass you with by killing it. If Obama doesn’t think the Republicans will go for it, he doesn’t make a move, outside of the occasional executive action which, frankly, doesn’t affect most of us. His brain trust also lives in terror of any bill that just might possibly or very definitely increase the budget deficit, because the voters want the deficit paid down, right? No, the average voter could care less about the deficit because it doesn’t affect them personally in the slightest. The average voter is trying to just make it through the day, hoping to keep their job or to find a new one. They see that government services have been cut back, their kids’ schools are overcrowded and the students underperforming. They’re seeing food and gasoline prices rise while their income remains stuck where it’s been for the past 3 years of so. The last thing they care about is Obama paying down the debt.

So, what should he do? Around the beginning of this year he and Harry Reid were swinging some big balls around but since then there’s been some significant shrinkage and the GOP is keeping a close eye on that shrinkage. Obama needs to regrow a pair and submit a far-reaching, effective, and expensive federal jobs creation plan, and then dare the Republicans–in an election year with an unemployment rate that is still too high and an economy still not improving. Of course, the Republicans are responsible for this, but apparently the voters who respond to those approval polls don’t see it that way. They’re tarring Obama with the same low approval ratings brush that they’re also smearing on Congress in general and on the GOP in particular.

Sure, introducing a jobs bill now would make Obama subject to the same Fox and GOP “trying to change the subject” charges they throw at everything he tries to do. So what? If Obama made this bold move and sold it to the American people like it was part of his 2008 presidential campaign platform, that would be a fastball he could blow by the Republicans. What Obama needs to do is watch two movies: “The American President” and “Dave”. OK, he’s no Michael Douglas or Kevin Kline but the point is with those two characters we WISHED they had both been president. The closest we get in real life is Bill Clinton making a speech.

What do the Republicans excel at? Getting the entire party and their surrogates unified behind the same talking points which they spew 24/7 everywhere their voter base turns, watches, listens, or (in a few cases) reads. One of the Achilles Heels of the Obama administration is that his staff, the Democratic Party, and their surrogates continually let their talking points assault drop. Where is Democratic Senator after Senator or Congressperson after Congressperson giving press conferences and interviews? OK, we know in advance Fox won’t cover any of it but what about CNN, MSNBC, PBS, NPR, the three who-used-to-be major networks? If PBS or NPR news editor refuses to give the same coverage they give the Republicans, the Democrats are also fully capable of voting to pull public broadcasting funding, too. And lastly, why the hell is Obama appointing communications industry lobbyists to the FCC instead of professionals who have the public’s interests and rights at heart? Reinstitute the Fairness Doctrine and that would do much to level the playing field.

I don’t see Obama as a master chess player; I see him as a guy who realized his dream but constantly fears it might be taken away from him, even though it can’t except by impeachment and conviction. I see him hemmed in by advisers who advise him on what he can and can’t do—and better not do if he knows what’s good for him politically. I think the GOP recognized this in him way before I did, and that has been the tale of his presidency. In his first term he chose to bend with the GOP wind (negotiate) and it almost broke him and it seriously wounded the Democratic Party in 2010.

Obama’s got two balls on him. He needs to use those balls to start throwing strikes.

Democrats Won And They’re Still Talking About Entitlement Reform? Really?

While we’re all basking in the glory of yesterday’s victory, here’s something to unbask in the dissipating glory. Steve Israel, head of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, was interviewed on NPR this morning and promptly confirmed that entitlements reform will be on the table, specifically Medicare but I’m sure Medicaid and Social Security will find themselves in the pot as well.

Why the hell is it the FIRST thing out of these “Democrats’” mouths is agreement with Republicans on entitlement reform before the negotiations even begin? Oh yes, he’s also talking spending cuts but then added the Democrats would also try to seek new revenue from closing tax loopholes for the rich, and from ending farm and oil subsidies.

Talking about entitlement reforms wouldn’t irk me if only Democrats would stop calling them entitlements but call them what they actually are–earned benefits. Bernie Sanders gets it–why can’t Israel? And John Warner. And Harry Reid. And Barack Obama.

Earned benefits reform is the last thing that should be put on the table, especially after the damage the sequester continues to inflict on low income persons with/without families, and this latest Republican government shutdown debacle. Increase revenue first, then talk spending cuts and reform.

Harry Reid Gives Me Credibility, Which Is More Than I Can Say For Him

I love it when “progressive” Democrats put me down for stating that there’s not much difference between Democrats and Republicans because then Harry Reid goes and proves me right.  Actually, Reid also proves the BIG difference between Democrats and Republicans: with the Republicans, you know what you’ve got. They are overtly destructive to the middle class and you can see through their every lie.  The Harry Reid Democrat talks about introducing liberal legislation but that’s as far as he goes—just talk.  Dianne Feinstein got the assault weapons bill out of committee with great fanfare.  The majority of Americans are on record as supporting a total ban on assault weapons. So what does Reid do? He refuses to bring the bill up for a vote in the Senate. Why? Because he claims he only has 40 votes and not the 60 required to end a filibuster.  And why is there still a filibuster in the Senate?  Because Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, left it in place despite all the calls from liberal Senators to have it eliminated.

Oh sure, Reid may introduce the assault weapons ban as an amendment to another bill the Senate Republicans may be forced to vote for, but he knows any gun control legislation is DOA in the House, so once again he looks like a good guy instead of the weasely wimp that he is.

Why would he do this? Because Harry Reid is a lousy and incompetent Majority Leader.  In the House, Speaker John Boehner typifies how the GOP frames itself.  He’s just as incompetent as Reid, but he projects the image visually and aurally of a politician at the peak of his power, which in a way is true because the Tea Party still controls the House as it gives him his marching orders.  In fact, the Republicans ALWAYS act as if they’re in power.  With Reid, he always acts—or refuses to act—as if he’s AFRAID of losing power.  It’s his timidity that is projected loud and clear visually and aurally. But in his case, he may be the Senate Majority Leader but it is clearly the coalition of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and the fake Democrats who control the Senate.

Reid has FIFTY-THREE Democrats in his Senate, and he can only convince FORTY of them to vote for the assault weapons ban.  Fake Democrats like Heidi Heitkamp , Max Baucus and Mark Pryor may be proud of their pro-gun stance and their Republican-friendly stance on other major issues, but some other stealth fake Democrats get just plain worried about having their names linked to a “No” vote on banning assault weapons, especially with 2014 looming ever closer.  If Reid keeps the filibuster in place, these phonies are spared the embarrassment of revealing their right wing natures to their possibly more liberal constituents since the vote will be blocked by the Republican filibuster.  A real majority leader would tell the fake Democrats to either toe the party line or get used to not getting any prestigious committee assignments or pork for their home states.  The only choice left to those phony Democrats would be to switch parties and take their chances with the voters in the next election. But Harry Reid isn’t a real majority leader.

Another handy use of the filibuster is that enables Reid the opportunity to position himself as a Democrat, to excoriate the Republicans for acting like Republicans,  and to otherwise do absolutely NOTHING in the way of bringing Democratic legislation to the floor of the Senate.  It’s all for show and—that’s all, folks!

Reid is too much of a chicken heart to employ the tactic of introducing the assault weapons ban to the Senate and then sitting back and allowing the Republicans to preen and filibuster it until it is dead.  Let the Republicans take the hit come 2014 for their blocking of stricter gun ownership laws and their focus on pushing anti-abortion ones.

Trouble is, there are fellow Democrats who might be forced to publicly take sides during the filibuster, and we wouldn’t want to embarrass our fellow Democrats by having them unmask themselves to the national electorate as the gun nuts their constituents already know they are, would we?  Hence, the safe protection of the filibuster which also enables Harry Reid to do absolutely nothing and get plenty well for not doing it.  Lyndon B. Johnson may have been a scoundrel, but he knew how to get Democrats to be DEMOCRATS and pass laws that would benefit the country as a whole.  With a Democratic majority in the Senate, no Democrat crossed him and no Republican caused much trouble if they knew what was good for them, professionally and personally.  If Reid had been Senate Majority Leader in the sixties, we wouldn’t have to worry about cuts to Medicare and Medicaid because neither program would exist.  I’d hate to think what other programs—Social Security—would also not be around had Reid been head of the Senate in 1935.

At least with Republicans you know what you’ve got: they intend to cut all social programs out of existence.  With Reid, he talks about protecting social programs and then agrees to start implementing these same cuts behind closed doors.

Why Obama Will Win

Yes, I know.  Can’t predict Obama will win or I’ll jinx it. Still 36 days to go till Election Day and anything could happen.  That’s the current thinking among the liberal media.  I bow to Rachel Maddow, Norman Goldman, Lawrence O’Donnell, Thom Hartmann and others of their high caliber in respect of their professional experience and expertise in analyzing political situations and trends.  But sometimes, too much experience can get in the way.  It’s like having a problem with the audio speakers connected to a computer.  The husband, who knows all about computers, checks for missing drivings, file corruption, registry errors and decides the audio card has failed.  His wife comes over to the computer and asks if he checked if the audio cable from the speakers became unplugged from the computer.  He hadn’t thought of that. He checks and by golly, the cat must have pulled the cable out of the audio jack on the back of the computer.  Problem solved.

Sometimes it takes someone with the lesser experience to clearly see the simple answer.  That’s why I think I have an observation that all of the professional, paid political pundits missed.  Obama will win the election because the Republican Party has decided to hand it over to him.  Look at the evidence logically: they fielded the worst slate of candidates ever seen during the Presidential primaries.  Either the candidates were flavors of the month or they never stood a chance. Every one fatally flawed and some were outright buffoons. Romney outspent every one of them and he was never able to attract more than about 25% of Republican voters.  He simply outlasted everyone else. Then he picks a running mate who is poison to senior citizens and women.  The team is quickly sinking into the dustbin of presidential campaign history.

Why is no one asking why Jeb Bush, the heir apparent to his brother, didn’t enter the race? The door has been held open for him since 2009. What about Mitch Daniels, the other much bally-hooed future front runner.  Chris Christie? He would have been more at home in the clown circus of this past year and will I guarantee he will be no more than a footnote by 2016. But why no heavy hitters, no Republican stars running for President this year?

The answer is as simple as checking to see if the audio plug was pulled out of the back of a computer: the Tea Party.  The movement started out in 2009 as a protest against the banks and taxes but for the most part what it was protesting was about as formalized as the Occupy Wall Street movement when it first started out.  But the Republican Party fairly quickly saw that the Tea Party was driven by racism and fear and was composed of low-information people with easily malleable minds that could be controlled, and just as quickly subverted the Party to suit its own needs. The Republican Party set the agenda and funded candidates for state offices and for Congress after President Obama took office.  It even promoted the birther offshoot.  The Republican Party’s goals were realized when in January 2010, the Tea Party took over control of the House and de facto control of the Senate.  This is what gave John Boehner the confidence to declare the Republicans would create jobs and Mitch McConnell to declare that the Senate Republicans’ most important job was to hold President Obama to one term.  The mistake both men and the Republican Party made was in thinking the Tea Party once in Congress could remain under their control. They were wrong. Oh, boy, were they wrong.

I truly think that both McConnell and Boehner thought they could stymie Obama’s “liberal” agenda while forwarding their own. And why not? Hadn’t the Democrats, who had lost their spine after 1981 while voting Antonin, Scalia, Clarence Thomas, John Roberts and Samuel Alito onto the Supreme Court, also voted for TARP and to approve George W. Bush’s invasion of Iraq? Hadn’t they always rolled over when it counted? The three things that scuttled both men’s grand plans were: 1. The no new taxes pledge.  2. The Tea Party had plans of its own.  3. Harry Reid grew a spine.

A despot learns early on that in order to retain absolute power that can be bequeathed to his/her heirs and to even become beloved among the people you have to give the people a little something. They may grumble about wanting more, but they will also fear losing what they have.  This is the way you keep them under control.  Every despot who after seizing power with the intent of taking everything away understood that in order to retain power he/she had to employ fear, violence, imprisonment, torture, and murder.  And every despot—or his/her heirs that employed these same tactics, eventually was deposed. This is consistent throughout history.   You gotta give the people something to keep them under control, whether it be steady job with decent wages and healthcare, homeownership, retirement, or welfare.

In January 2011, the Tea Party took over Congress and state governments with one agenda: to have it their way.  Power, wealth, absolute control over every aspect of society that wasn’t signing on their agenda. And the Republican Party sat back and let them give it a try just to see if it would work.  By the end of 2011 the Republican Party could see the experiment was a dismal failure, its approval ratings were in free fall, and people in and outside its base, were getting very, very restless.  John Boehner tried to bring the Tea Party back under his control, but those horses had left the barn way back in January.

The Tea Party became the Republican Frankenstein’s monster.  I don’t think Boehner and McConnell had planned to drive the U.S. to the brink of bankruptcy over the raising the debt ceiling, and I don’t think they had planned on the Super Congress which mandated would cut off the udders of the sacred cow/milltary budget, and the push to pass the anti-abortion bills might have caught them by surprise.  What probably angered them was the Tea Party monster’s refusal to introduce or consider any jobs bills at all. In the entire history of Congress, both parties had typically found ways to compromise and work together for the greater benefit of the country.  But the Tea Party refused to be budged off its ideology and it was plain for all to see that Boehner lost control of the House in 2011 and that Eric Cantor, who had re-made himself in the image of the Tea Party, was calling the shots.

As this rupture within the Republican Party widened, its approval ratings began to tumble. When the presidential primary season rolled around, it was clear Republican voters were searching for and running to the newest Messiah, only to find the person was no more than a snake oil salesperson.  They rejected every one of them until the only non-Messiah left was Mitt Romney.  The Republican Party has not so much embraced Romney as settled for him. Settling for has no deteriorated into writing off the Presidency and hoping to retain control of at least one chamber of Congress.

The Republican Party sees that the record lowest approval ratings for Congress in history coincide with the Tea Party takeover and the move so far to the right the base and independent voters are being made to feel like they’re liberals, a feeling uncomfortable and alien to them.  It knows that if it ever hopes to regain control in D.C. and elect Jeb Bush president, it needs to kill (figuratively speaking) the Tea Party and its sycophants like Sarah Palin.  So, it is allowing Obama to be re-elected and Obamacare to remain to be a thorn in the side of its base. The base will be riled up over how the Tea Party did nothing but gridlock Congress AND enable Obama to be re-elected that it will return to electing mainstream Republicans to Congress.

Yes, the Republican Party wants to the Tea Party to die so it can be the Republican Party again and start winning presidential elections.  It’s like a phoenix which must die by fire in order to be reborn from the ashes.  There is no other logical explanation why it has fielded two absolute incompetents to run against Obama.  Romney’s falling approval ratings are bad enough but his most unforgiveable sin is that he is bringing down the ratings for Fox News, and that cannot be countenanced.  The best evidence of the Republican Party abandoning Romney is Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS group moving money out of the Romney campaign and into selected Congressional races, like those for Todd Akin and Scott Brown.  Of course Rove has aligned himself with the Tea Party and perhaps there are powers greater than him who want him gone with the Tea Party as well.

Remember that unlike the Democrats, the Republicans think long term.  They were planning their takeover of American politics back in the 70’s and they achieved that goal. Even Bill Clinton was more Republican than Democrat. So they are perfectly happy to write off eight years of Obama, who is similar to Bill Clinton in quite a few ways.  Their new four-year plan starts next year in preparation for the midterm elections in 2014. The Republican Party always believes, despite the panic it instills in its base, that it has all the time in the world. Except of course, if the Mayans were right about the world ending 12/21/2012. But I think Karl Rove bought the rights to the Mayan calendar and reset the date to 2016 if a Democrat wins the White House again.