LIKE IT OR LOATHE IT

By George Smith

Like it or loathe it, the impeachment trial of Donald  J. Trump is an extraordinarily historical event.

Like him or loathe him, the American people are entitled to know the truth: Did the president break the law?

Unconventional. That’s a good descriptive word for the 45th. president. Other words and phrases that, in my mind, also fits this president include “reactionary,” “ignorant of history and how government works,” “cyber-bully,” “egomaniacal,” “whining crybaby” and “flimflam artist.”

None of those descriptive terms are impeachable offenses; abuse of power and obstruction of justice are.

What we are seeing and going to see in the Senate version of a poorly written soap opera is comedy posing as a drama.

When the curtain comes up on the 21st
 of January, 2020 on the impeachment trial, the world will be seeing a farce of a trial; it will be a trial in name only. What will be shown on the world stage will be a partisan morality play superimposed over a promise of fairness and transparency.

Without pertinent witnesses (and Hunter Biden has no direct knowledge of the charges against the president; that is a ridiculous GOP talking point), the proceedings will be a whitewash, pure and simple.

If Trump did nothing wrong, allow witnesses and order up pertinent documents. Without them, there is not a trial, just a waste of time and money.

Trump has already been found guilty; he has been impeached, a stigma that will never go away.

The GOP will only put an exclamation mark on his humiliation by continuing the coverup.

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NOTHING HAS CHANGED

By George Smith

Nothing has changed in four years. This column written in January 2016.

What are we doing to each other?

The frustration and anger from the heartland about the unbridled corruption and blind hatred directed at any person expressing an opinion that does not follow the bootfalls of a certain political philosophy has emerged with a vengeance.

It is impossible to have a meaningful exchange of ideas when people re-spew venom and lies from mouth breathers whose paycheck is based on the degree and mass of heated rhetoric they can shovel.

Certain politicos are profession aginners, fear-mongers, and haters. The fact that so many folks are buying into the frustration and hate-word-filled  diatribes scares me and creates an intense sense of doom for America and its citizens.

Educate yourself on the issues and then vote. Exercising your right to vote — after filtering out the self-righteous pabulum — is paramount if we ever hope to bridge the chasm that is dividing this country.

This is not about Obama and/or Trump., Republican values, Democratic values, about guns or religious difference or where a person is born.

This is about acknowledging that America is broken and working to fix the ills washing over its citizens. It is not about creating more problems and hatred.

This election is important, possibly the most important in its history since the last days of WWII.

Educate yourself in all the issues; research each candidate and stated position; reject the implausible and the mountain of impossible theoretical promises; turn off cable news programs and start thinking for yourself.

Then, vote. The future of the country –the future of its heart and soul — are at stake.

Don’t let billionaires buy your vote. Think. Study. Vote.

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MENTAL FLACCIDITY

By George Smith

Two words: Mental flaccidity.

Two cojoined words: Lindsey Graham.

In 2016 Graham called Donald Trump a “race-baiting xenophobic bigot.” Now, Graham is a Trumper through-and-through; nothing the president has done or will do will sway his faithful servitude.

Why? Why has Lindsey Graham gone from a Trump-aginner to a Trump-spinner?

Plain and simple, he has sold his soul, whatever tiny bit of character he had, allegiance to the endangered species called “personal ethics” and his legacy to get re-elected and hold onto the mantle of senatorial power.

There was a time when the senator’s voice meant something, when people waited to hear his measured assessment on key issues. 

Now, he’s just one of Trump’s lackeys, a prime example of today’s two-faced, hypocritical politician that has taken up permanent residence in Washington-on-the-Deficit. These survive-at-any-costs mental pettifoggers will urinate  on the grave of their mother to keep a title (representative or senator) that used to be revered but now is not worth “a bucket of warm spit,” to quote the late John Nance Garner, commenting on the office of vice president, which he held … and despised.

Congress should be staffed with patriots, civil servants who put the country’s interests ahead of personal preference and partisan party policies and platform planks. 

Today, for the most part, residents are represented by me-first egoists who are corrupted by the power and money that come with winning a regional,  state or nationally elected office.

Where are the men and women whom possess inner peace and exude strength of character? Where are those who believe a life well lived is not measured in awards, magazine covers, complimentary Twitter posts snd seven-digit  followers,  and a bank statement with a dizzying numbers of zeroes in the bank. Where are those who want to pass from this world with their life measured and wrapped up in good works and examples of kindness to all.

Where are the heroes? We never needed them more.

Spiritual warfare

By George Smith

That’s what this nation is facing with President Trump and his impeachment.

Two words, spiritual. warfare, are tearing this nation asunder.

Heartfelt prayers are uplifted by people of all faiths for Trump to be exonerated…and also to be relegated to the dung heap of history reserved for crooked politicians. In due time, it appears this Christmas season 2019, he will occupy a place of prominence in both sides of this divisive segment of presidential history.

To his supporters— the Hillary haters or the racists or those one-issue citizens (abortion, immigration, end to “gummit gimme” programs)—Trump is, to quote George Clooney in “O’ Brother, Where Art Thou!”, the “damn paterfamilias” of a huge living, breathing body of don’t-care-what-he-does-as-long-as-he-satisfies-my-concerns followers.

The most perplexing of his supporters, to free-thinkers, at least, are evangelical Christians. Regular, every-Sunday-or-so Christians simply cannot understand the fervent soul-salivating of evangelical preachers and those that follow their lead in  worshipping Trump. After boiling away all the fiction surrounding Donald Trump, he is the  anti-Christian, a reprobate, a fraud, a serial adulterer who tried to get Wife No. 2 to get an abortion, a serial scam artist who has pushed six businesses into bankruptcies, and paid out millions after being forced to close his “university” and his “foundation.”

By any definition, Trump is no Christian. So, Trumpeteers, find another paterfamilias to follow

Now, that we’ve settled that argument once and for all…./:-)

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As Expected and Predicted

By George Smith

As expected and predicted by government and private sector economists, the Trump administration’s combination of a big increase in military spending and a very large reduction in revenues (mainly aimed at the super-rich and big corporations) meant rapidly growing interest payments both because of higher deficits and debt and rising interest rates.

The self-ordained “stable genius” and fiscal wunderkind (who has, should we forget, have had six businesses go into bankruptcy) is spending our children’s and grandchildren’s future. And 40-plus percent of Americans simply do not care.

It is not a partisan rant to proclaim the country is in serious fiscal trouble even for these relatively good economic times.

And,  for the first time since the end of World War II, our allies in the United Nations and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization are skittish about our political moods, methods and motives in regard to America’s place in the world. Who are we … today? Who will we be … tomorrow?

You can defend your Trump vote by saying Hillary was not your candidate of choice, but that choice three years ago should not blind those that voted for Trump forever, or give them an excuse to forget the inexcusable behavior of a befuddled egomaniac and tyramt.

As a person, Donald Trump is fatally flawed; his errant, unpredictable mental flappings of delusional conspiracies galore are too frequent to be contrived. He is, in a word, delusional.

In fact, he is dangerous in the office he holds and those who bow to his wishes or (God forbid) believe his delusional thoughts come from some divine intervention, are linked forever to the tearing apart of the moral and ethic fabric of the United States.

Look around you: You cannot blame the widening division in the country on partisan politics or Hillary Clinton. You cannot blame Barack Obama for the out-of-control, runaway federal budgets and spiraling federal debt; the GOP was in charge of Congress six of Obama’s eight yers in office.

The increasing partisan rancor, the ridiculing and sloughing off of valued global allies, scandals and investigations and pleas and sentences of Trump associates, and, yes, even the impeachment proceedings against the president, lies squarely on the twirling brainpan thoughts, tweeting fingers and twitching tongue of the president.

Defend him and his aberrant behavior at your peril. For, as sure as you are reading this line, if you are an ardent defender of President Trump, you will find yourself on the wrong side of history.

He will be reviled for generations to come because of his economic shortcomings, belief that his thoughts are laws-in-action and that his infallibility comes from God, and ill treatment of citizens and immigrants alike.

It is his future. It does not have to be the future of his current followers. It’s not too late to embrace our better selves, to interact with the truth that shows beyond a doubt Trump is a fake and a fraud and will be forever branded as the most horrid person —personally and professionally — ever to hold the highest office in the United States.


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What team(s) could take down Trump-Pence

By George Smith

What team(s) could take down The Trump-Pence or Trump-Anybody ticket in 2020?

Every single Democratic presidential candidate needs a vice president who can bring in extra votes from various essential demographic segments from throughout the nation. 

On paper, Biden has more governmental experience than all the other candidates combined. But his age and tendency to “blank out” on occasion is a real cause for concern.

His running mate needs to be younger, female and/or a minority to satisfy the progressive and non-white voting blocs of the party.

Biden and … who? Georgia’s rising star Stacy Abrams? Or Sen. Kamala Harris?.” Or Texas’ Julian Castro? 

Elizabeth Warren would need a miracle to get the nomination. If she got it, she’d have to pick Sen. Corey Booker, Castro or dark horse Andrew Yang (see below). An all-female ticket sounds so “NOW cool” but any such ticket would get creamed in the general election. Why? Just because. The hard, sad reality is that America is not ready for an all-female ticket.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar: See above.

Sen. Harris: Castro, Yang or Pete Buttigieg.

Andrew Yang is arguably –right there with Buttigieg — the smartest candidate running but the voting public’s general knowledge of the well-spoken entrepreneur is too miserly to form a positive impression. His non-profit Ventures for America was designed to create jobs in struggling American cities fits nicely with the progressive aims of the party.

Buttigieg has two negatives: He had no federal governmental experience and he’s openly gay, not that there’s anything wrong with either one. Any Democratic nominee must carry heavy minority support in all states to win and, as a sad truism, minority support for a gay candidate would be sorely lacking.

Bernie, Bernie, Bernie. Sanders cannot win. A picture of him in ads with wind-blown hair and two words — “Socialist Jew!” — and Trump would win 46 states.

Age and proclaiming his love for socialism are vote-killers.

It is a sad fact that the average American does not know the difference between a socialist  and democratic socialism but there is the rub.

The other candidates, at this point, are after-thoughts who, individually, have to hit a collective heartstring with a huge slice of Democrats and Independents in order to break out of the bottom tier of wanna-be’s.

Can any candidate, any ticket, beat Trump and Company?

Even with impeachment hanging in the air like a guillotine over the president, his foundation of support seems as strong as186 proof moonshine.

Opposing party candidates are not going to win the nomination, much less the election, by promising big dollar gimme programs like Medicare for all and free college and college debt forgiveness without addressing the federal debt, high medical costs and the nation’s deteriorating infrastructure.

Right now, with the candidates on the trail, defeating Trump in November 2020 is an uphill battle in icy conditions.  And it is already looking like the snow chains were left at home.

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MOVE TO THE LIGHT

By George Smith

I want Donald Trump to be a one-term president. I want it badly.

The president has turned his first three years into a movie sequel of “All the President’s Men.” You know, criminals setting public policy among a litany of dirty tricks aimed at messing with  the opposition…that movie.

While the Republicans are sticking to their game plan of posturing with dynamic displays of feigned righteous indignation, the Democrats out of the TV screen are doing everything they can to hand Trump a second term. 

I’m talking about the 113 candidates (or whatever the number is today) wanting to be the Democratic nominee in 2020.

A Democrat, any Democrat, is not going to break through the culture of them vs. us, elites vs. deplorables and decaf latte drinkers vs. those that swill lukewarm Budweiser by talking about corruption-squared amateurs playing politics and scamming the system to maximize their reputations, power and latent need for money.

The Democratic Party is not going to win the White House a year from now by impeaching this president or emasculating, so to speak, other Democratic candidates.

The only way a Democrat, any Democrat, will win the right to sit in the Oval Office is to talk about the most important items facing Americans —the deficit (which no one is talking about), the long-term survival of Medicare and Social Security (which no one is talking about), the failing national infrastructure (which no one is talking about), and climate change (which no one is REALLY talking about).

A majority of Americans are tired of the partisan party games, name-calling, egocentric stunts and cock-of-the-walk preening for the television cameras.

What they want — what we all should want — is an honest discussion of what the future should hold to ensure the safety of our nation and a dedication to re-establishing of the U.S. as a true global partner of any nation that embraces democracy as a right or a goal.

The division in the nation’s framework is steeped in prejudice and tribal regionalism and hatred of the political status quo.

It’s time to make a conscientious effort to put aside paltry, petty differences and start thinking “America is better than this.”

It’s not too late to seek a different path one which is lined with angels to help guide us into the future.

We are all headed to the same place.

Leave the bugaboos and will o’ the wisps behind. Look to the light. Move to the light.

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