GOP, The Party of the Past That Should Be Doomed To Final Failure…

I was once a republican. I believed that maintaining the national debt at a manageable sustainable level is important. The Republican party said they did as well.

I believed that annual budget deficits were often unavoidable during recessionary cycles but knew that during grow cycles budgets needed to be balanced in order to be able to sustain a manageable national debt level. I thought te Republican party believed the same.

I was wrong on both counts as the Republican party has been most responsible for our national debt explosion every since Ronald Wilson Reagan was our president. It continues under Trump unabated and NO ONE  in the Republican party is even talking about the national debt or budget deficits any longer.

It’s like no one cares anymore. Likely that is because they don’t. The Republican Party aversion to raising taxes during growth cycles is stuff of legendary proportions. Even though that is how debt control works. Reducing taxes to “stimulate economic growth” is something we’ve seen time and again just doesn’t work. The national debt stands as a monumental statue to that fact.

The Party of Lincoln (actually it no longer is) has become the Party of the Wealthy , By the Wealthy, and For the Wealthy. Its primary focus is to insure that wealth remains concentrated in the hands of those occupying the top 1 or 2 percent on the economic scale. A sure tract to oligarchy.

Below excerpt is from The New York Times.

… The financial crisis of 2008 and 2009 left the vast majority of working people and the Democrats’ base of African-Americans, Hispanics, single women and millennials shattered for years. They lost much of their wealth and were forced into new jobs that often paid less. Many faced prohibitive student debt. With wages stagnant for a decade, they were frustrated with the daunting costs of health care, prescription drugs, child care and housing. Yet in the main, Mr. Obama, Hillary Clinton — and now Mr. Trump — hailed the economy’s progress, the millions of new jobs. But that was and is clueless. Mr. Trump will be the latest presidential candidate punished by the voters for not getting it.

The Democrats in the 2018 wave election did get it and made their biggest gains, compared with 2016, not in the suburbs — despite winning most of their new seats there — but in the rural areas and among white working class voters, particularly women. This pullback from Mr. Trump among white working class women in particular went further this year. As of 2019, he enjoyed only a single-digit lead with the voters who played such a big role in the 2016 surprise. In 2018, Democrats succeeded by attacking Republicans for attempting to repeal Obamacare and failing to lower skyrocketing prescription drug costs. They proposed trillion-dollar investments in infrastructure and battled to drive dark money out of politics.

Mr. Trump and the Republican Congress continued to seek the repeal of the Affordable Care Act, working both to make it fail in practice and to slash federal health care spending for seniors and the poor. That made health care the top reason for voting for Democrats in 2018, but it also revealed what has become a defining partisan difference: a Republican Party determined to destroy government outside of defense and a Democratic Party determined to use it expansively.

The Democrats today are reacting not only to Mr. Trump but to the Tea Party-dominated Republican Party that preceded and prepared the way for him with gridlocked government. After coming to power in the 2010 wave election, the Republicans tried to keep the government from addressing virtually any problem at all. The Tea Party movement was animated by its hostility to Mr. Obama and his activist government. Empowered in the House, it forced an I.M.F.-like budget austerity on the federal government and blocked any new economic stimulus and investment. As a candidate, Mr. Trump built his base among Tea Party Republicans and Evangelicals in order to carry forward the assault on government nationally and in the states. The Democrats watched in frustration as the government was presumed to be impotent to address wage stagnation, surging inequality, climate change, the slaughter from automatic weapons and the flood of dark money into politics.

But this dam has burst. With Mr. Trump’s ever-escalating assault on government, the proportion of Americans who say that government “should do more to solve problems and meet the needs of people” surged to the highest level in 20 years. Democratic candidates who understand this political moment will push for a government that changes the country’s course, as it did under Democratic presidents after the progressive victories of 2008 and 1964 and especially after the 1932 triumph of Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal.

Democratic voters today look at the chief executives of major corporations and they see the face of an era where greed was unchecked, where companies failed to invest in their workers and used their big donations and lobbyists to rig the political system against the middle and working classes. They are determined that government must do something not only about corruption and corporate excess, but also inequality, universal health care, the state of the working family, climate change, globalization, entrenched racial and gender disparities and more…

Democrats have an amazing opportunity to take back America for the middle class and those less fortunate. But, the mega guns of the Republican party and its wealthy donors are gearing up for the monumental fight they KNOW is coming. Independents and Democrats need to unite to destroy the seeds of Trumpism before it destroys America.

Full article BELOW the FOLD.

Hear The Founders As They Protest Trump’s March To Authoritarianism…

When Ivy League-educated, formerly sane politicians spew conspiracy theories, debunked talking points and contempt for science, the question often arises: Do they believe this nonsense (i.e. have they become thickheaded by listening to Rush Limbaugh and watching all that Fox News?), or are they cynical purveyors of claptrap designed to woo unsophisticated voters?

America is perhaps facing the greatest challenge yet to our democratic republic. The fact the nation’s own president and his party (the GOP) are at the heart of this grave threat is somethng many of us foresaw and predicted. But approximately 40% of America (give or take) see Trump as the savior of America’s white population. They are fearful of losing their white priviledge in a nation they really believe belongs to white folks. Trump’s most avid suporters are therefore only too happy to throw their weight behind the Authoritarian and his party apparatus who they believe will keep the status quo and protect them (for the time being anyway) from getting “squeezed out” by brown and black folks.

The following excerpt from the Washington Post by Jennifer Rubin is spot on. Ms. Rubin is a conservative who understands the grave danger Trump is to our democratic republic. It would be well for tose who value freedom and personal liberty to heed her remarks.

It is not as if anti-intellectualism suddenly appeared with the election of President Trump. The habitual rejection of expertise on everything from climate change to the economic impact of immigration has been rampant in the Republican Party for some time. It is part and parcel of the invented victimization of mostly white, non-college-educated men who attribute their loss of prestige and status to “elites,” especially those in colleges and the media. Even right-wingers who should know better have felt compelled to pander to audiences that wear ignorance and anti-intellectualism as a badge of honor.

With Trump, the resort to lies, conspiracies and propaganda has become a matter of political survival for the ambitious right-wingers. Trump’s authoritarian contempt for truth sets the tone, forcing military hawks such as Cotton to remain mum when Trump dismisses traumatic brain injuries as “headaches” and former Cold Warriors such as Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) to parrot Russian propaganda on Ukraine.

Their know-nothingism is sustained and hardened inside the right-wing media loop. Trump and his sycophants can repeat whatever falsehoods required to support Trump without fear of contradiction, let alone mockery, in the right-wing media world. It is only when Republicans venture out into legitimate media that refuses to play along with conspiracy theories that they run into trouble.

Trump has merged the know-nothingism of right-wing populism with a far more dangerous intellectual evolution from defense of limited-government conservatism, which was formerly at the heart of modern conservatism, to outright worship of authoritarianism. Now, far too many conservatives have reverence for executive power and reject constitutional government.

Attorney General William P. Barr and his cheerleaders from the Federalist Society embody this frightening development. Donald Ayer, former U.S. deputy attorney general under George H.W. Bush, writes that Barr advocates “the need for a virtually autocratic executive who is not constrained by countervailing powers within our government under the constitutional system of checks and balances.” For Barr, limited government means limited checks on the president, the antithesis of the framers’ vision. Ayer writes:

For whatever twisted reasons, he believes that the president should be above the law, and he has as his foil in pursuit of that goal a president who, uniquely in our history, actually aspires to that status. And Barr has acted repeatedly on those beliefs in ways that are more damaging at every turn. Presently he is moving forward with active misuse of the criminal sanction, as one more tool of the president’s personal interests.
Bill Barr’s America is not a place that anyone, including Trump voters, should want to go. It is a banana republic where all are subject to the whims of a dictatorial president and his henchmen.

More BELOW the FOLD.

Impeachment Moves To Next Phase…

“I don’t know why Republicans are afraid of the truth.”

“Every member should support the American people hearing the facts for themselves. That is what this vote is about. It’s about the truth. And what is at stake in all of this is nothing less than our democracy.”

Nancy Pelosi, 10/31/2019

 

America will enter the next phase of the impeachment process, public hearings. Affording all Americans the opportunity to hear the facts and the truth for themselves. As the Washington Post accurately points out, democracy dies in darkness. 

Why the GOP is afraid of letting the American people hear and know the truth is indeed puzzling. Authoritarian and dictatorial regimes around the world have always engaged in propaganda and disinformation in support of the regime leader’s agenda and interests. But we are a democratic republic, not a monarchy or a dictatorship.

We question the motives and patriotism of the secretive GOP

Full story BELOW the FOLD

A Decision of a Stable Genius…

America’s stable genius at work. The man who knows better than the generals and scientists is hard at work taking America back to greatness.

Returning to the past is not necessarily a good thing. But that is something America’s stable genius hasn’t time to consider. He’s busy Making America Great Again.

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is expected to roll back an Obama-era regulation that was to limit emissions of dangerous heavy metals like arsenic, lead and mercury from coal-fired power plants, according to two people familiar with the plans.

In a rule expected as early as Thursday, the Environmental Protection Agency will move to weaken the 2015 regulation by relaxing some of the requirements on power generators and also exempting a significant number of power plants from even those requirements.

The effort was designed to extend the life of old, coal-fired power plants that have been shutting down in the face of competition from cheaper natural gas and renewable energy generators. Environmental groups warned that the move could lead to health problems caused by contaminated drinking water, including birth defects, cancer and stunted brain development in young children.

Fox “News”, America’s State Propaganda Machine…

National Security Council Director for European Affairs Alexander Vindman arrives at the Capitol.  (Mandel Ngan/AFP)
National Security Council Director for European Affairs Alexander Vindman arrives at the Capitol. (Mandel Ngan/AFP)

State news media (Fox News) has begun the smear campaign against  Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman. Because this man of honor, a real and true patriot, had the audacity to speak the truth about Trump’s phone conversation with the Ukrainian President (the Biden/Hunter ruse) Fox in usual form has began their assault on truth.

For some Fox News personalities, apparently, there is no greater expression of disloyalty to country than a display of disloyalty to President Trump.

On Tuesday, Lt. Col. Alexander S. Vindman, a Ukraine expert in the White House, is set to testify to House impeachment investigators that he recoiled at Trump’s repeated demand that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky manufacture smears of Trump’s potential campaign opponent Joe Biden.

Vindman will testify that he viewed this as an act of patriotism, because he saw Trump’s corrupt conduct as damaging to U.S. national security. So, naturally, Fox News figures are already questioning Vindman’s loyalty to our country — or, more precisely, to Trump himself.

Evidently, placing country before Trump is the ultimate act of supreme betrayal.

SKIP

In his opening statement, Vindman says he “did not think it was proper to demand that a foreign government investigate a U.S. citizen.” Vindman is a decorated lieutenant colonel, so when he delivers this message once the inquiry moves into its public phase, it could be very compelling.

What’s more, Vindman will blow a big hole in one of Trump’s most important defenses.

Vindman discusses a key meeting on July 10 with Ukrainian officials, who expressed their desire for a Trump-Zelensky meeting. Vindman then says Gordon Sondland — the ambassador to the European Union — “started to speak about Ukraine delivering specific investigations in order to secure the meeting with the President.”

That further nails down part of the quid pro quo. But there’s more. Sondland’s demand prompted then-national security adviser John Bolton to “cut the meeting short.” Then Vindman testifies that this happened:

Following this meeting, there was a scheduled debriefing during which Amb. Sondland emphasized the importance that Ukraine deliver the investigations into the 2016 election, the Bidens, and Burisma. I stated to Amb. Sondland that his statements were inappropriate, that the request to investigate Biden and his son had nothing to do with national security, and that such investigations were not something the NSC was going to get involved in or push.

Which brings us to Fox News’s smear of Vindman The Fox smear

Fox’s Laura Ingraham unleashed a diatribe against Vindman on Monday night that focused on the fact that Ukrainians privately solicited Vindman’s help in navigating difficulties created by Giuliani running this shadow policy toward Ukraine. Watch:

Andrew Lawrence@ndrew_lawrence. Oh my God, look at the spin they are using right now, actually saying that Vindman is a Ukrainian double agent….this is so freaking bananas

“Here we have a U.S. national security official who is advising Ukraine while working inside the White House, apparently against the president’s interests,” Ingraham railed. Former George W. Bush administration lawyer John Yoo called this potential “espionage.”

Note here Ingraham’s frank admission that Vindman was working against the president’s interests.

You see, Giuliani’s shadow policy toward Ukraine was not in the interests of the United States. It was in Trump’s interests. Giuliani himself declared in May that this scheme would be “very helpful to my client.”

Ingraham is unwittingly admitting the obvious here: In trying to keep our foreign policy aligned with our own national interests, Vindman was operating against those of the president. And this is the real betrayal for which Vindman must be destroyed.