What Happened? I’ll Tell You What Happened (2017Sep12)


New York, Hillary Rodham Clinton

Hillary Rodham Clinton speaks to the reporters at United Nations headquarters, Tuesday, March 10, 2015. Clinton conceded that she should have used a government email to conduct business as secretary of state, saying her decision was simply a matter of “convenience.” (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)

Tuesday, September 12, 2017                                          11:07 AM

What Happened? I’ll Tell You What Happened   (2017Sep12)

Hillary Clinton’s new book, “What Happened”, has been getting a multitude of similar reviews—all of which summarize her reasoning and smugly find it lacking, for a bunch of self-assured reasons. It makes me crazy to see this reek of misogyny continuing on, as if the election were still in progress.

We all know exactly ‘What Happened’. Hillary Clinton offered the country an intelligent, reasonable choice—and we, in our collective wisdom (or lack of) chose Donald Trump—an idiot we would be hard pressed to find the equal of. It is not Hillary who has to explain herself. ‘We have met the enemy—and he is us.’

The GOP blamed Obama for eight years of struggle to recover our employment rate—forgetting that Bush made the crater Obama then crawled out of. Did Hillary fail to recognize the spasms of rage and resentment being stoked by Republicans, Alt-righters, and Russians? Did she keep her head in an environment where quiet common sense had gone out of fashion? Yes. Does her being a minority of one mean that she should have acted like a carnival barker—that she was the one making mistake after mistake? Sadly, no—that was us.

The media, especially social media, whipped us all into paroxysms of hysteria over the 2016 presidential race—and only in such a fact-free, reason-free, top-of-your-voice environment could we have been turned around enough to have voted in a TV con-man with his hand out, groping for pussy. But hey—that’s What Happened.

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It’s Kinda Important (2016Oct30)


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Sunday, October 30, 2016                                       4:07 PM

Well, I’m still mad about Comey—the pig-snout! Fire that hack, President Obama—or whoever is in charge of FBI Directors. It looks like Trump isn’t the only unfit person involved in government these days. These unspeakable people harass after HRC, trying to bring her down with technicalities, while they trample all over the spirit of the election. And I’m not even sure what Comey did was legal—if it is, it shouldn’t be. Actual lawyers have rules preventing them from this behavior—but blowhards can do as they please.

You see, to some people, a position of responsibility is an opportunity, not a burden. Their only purpose in seeking such positions is to further themselves, not serve the public. And they assume that everyone is as empty inside as they are. So, of course, to them, HRC is plotting to take over the world—that’s what they’d do, given the opening. They scoff at the idealism inherent in a lifelong public servant like Secretary Clinton—and they invite us to join them in their bitter conviction that the world is as ugly as they perceive it to be.

Listen to the people that rail against her—they all have a delirious rage to them. It is as if HRC has become for them the symbol of helplessness—she represents women’s equality; her career is an attack on fundamentalism; her marriage is both imperfect but unbroken—which is more than many of her detractors can say; and she is just as pugnacious as her tormentors, but a lot smarter about it—which drives them mad with rage. She is the embodiment of the irresistible force of change—of our ongoing history of social progress and human rights.

I would even go so far as to say that Hillary Rodham Clinton is America, in a woman—flawed but dreaming of greater things, successful but concerned for those who have less, strong and ready to fight—but only for justice and human dignity. And, certainly, cursed by many—for various reasons. But come to think of it—remember that the USA, and we its citizens, are none too well loved in many parts of the world—we’ve made mistakes, and we invite envy with our success—and we’ve been bad-mouthed by people that want to see us fail. Well, in this domestic affair, our presidential election, Hillary is the USA—and Trump and his GOP cronies are the Third-World dictators-of-finance that are bad-mouthing her and want to see her fail. Bullies are everywhere, both at home and abroad—and they can be easily identified by their actions. See these two candidates for who and what they really are, please—it’s kinda important. And please Vote.

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This Has Got To Stop (2016Oct29)


dircomey

Saturday, October 29, 2016                                              8:11 PM

If Secretary Clinton did something truly wrong, I want to know what it is—and I want to know right now. I have had enough of this pussy-footing B.S. about hearings and investigations and witch-hunts. I will consider any lack of straight answers or compelling proof, by election day, to be an admission that the vast right-wing conspiracy has been finding welcoming friends among the Republican party for thirty years—and that all their outrage is hypocritical hogwash that they have sold to us on the basis of pure repetition and pig-headed refusal to drop any rumor they ever started.

Face facts. If anyone belongs in jail here, it’s Trump. If anyone is lying their head off here, it’s Trump. If any FBI director has ever pulled this stunt eleven days before Election Day, I’d like to know which presidential race that was.

Sorry, Trump supporters—I’ll try to say this as kindly as I can. If you support that mountain of bull-crap, then you should take a long look inside yourself and ask if maybe it’s resonating with some bull-crap of your own. Hey, life is unfair—but blaming potentially your best advocate for that, on the word of a bunch of trolls, is worse than unfair—it’s self-destructive. Go towards the light. Don’t listen to the scary man’s voice.

The news and the press are faced with a tough decision here—if a man is proven to be lying about 70% of everything he says, are they still obligated to give him equal time? I understand Vice President Biden’s urge to beat this jack-off to a pulp—the way he thinks and talks about America outrages my patriotism as much as if he were insulting my mother. And, considering the man, I’m sure he would do that, as well, given half a chance.

This TV personality only looks like a respectable person—he’s got wardrobe and make-up people. But when he opens his mouth he reveals a complete ignorance of the Constitution, the law, the powers of the presidency, international relations, education, or social engineering. Both his actions and his associations strongly suggest bigotry, sexism, and nationalism as part of his character. He’s a pig—how can I explain to you something you should be seeing for yourself?

I call for the immediate dismissal of Director Comey for interference in an election. (I would suggest waiting until the day after the election, so as not to seem partisan, but if the Director can’t wait, I don’t see why we should.) And I call for his replacement to immediately release whatever new information the FBI has pertaining to the Clinton email investigation. This crap has got to stop. Innocent until proven guilty, godammit—especially during an ongoing election.

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Birthday Girl   (2016Oct27)


Thursday, October 27, 2016                                             3:47 PM

Today’s video isn’t really a present for our future president—it’s more about my daughter and granddaughter—but their lives will be so much better for having Hillary Clinton in the White House for the next eight years—that’s right—eight. So the video is for them—but consider it a thank-you-in-advance to Hillary, as well.

I know that Secretary Hillary Rodham Clinton’s birthday was yesterday, but you don’t turn 69 every day, so I think an extension is in order. And she does kinda look like a little girl up on the platform next to Michelle Obama—she’s really adorable. I know that Wiki-Leaks dumped some more emails about the Clintons profiting from their positions or their charity—but the State Department has nothing to say about it, and the alignments of government decisions concerning foreign actors that paid the Clintons is hard to prove (though easy to suggest) and proving that those government decisions were against the country’s best interests is an even harder case to make.

However, if I wanted to prove that her opponent was actually a threat to this country, rather than a fitting leader of it, I could easily do that to the satisfaction of most Americans—or so the polls would suggest. Or rather, the polls suggest that such proof has already been made—a bell that cannot be unrung, try though Fox News might.

He isn’t really the issue though. The general anti-Hillary tone of America is the subject that has aroused my ire this afternoon. When I hear those whiny people, squirming with delight at being on TV, yet saying things they should be ashamed of—repeating things they heard Trump say, or some other Republican, to the effect that Hillary is an untrustworthy, dangerous criminal—I could just spit.

For starters, we have this fine old tradition here that says no one is guilty until proven so in a court of law. Further, Hillary has been to court; she’s been to the Hill (for eleven hours); she’s been interrogated by the FBI. Usually, fugitives don’t make speeches on TV, so I’m going to assume that Hillary is not a criminal. Only during a campaign can someone call their opponent a crook, and not suffer for it—it’s slander. Criminal accusations are usually accompanied by evidence rather than innuendo—only during a campaign is innuendo sufficient.

Over thirty years of public service deserves more respect from us—it certainly gets respect from the people that pay her a fortune to come and talk to them. They must be interested in her ideas and her experience. You know, the talk-circuit is an industry in itself—many great and famous people make a good living off it—and there’s nothing illegal about it. I’m sure that Hillary’s fees make many people jealous—but that is their problem—not ours. We need only recognize that the most powerful people on Earth want to hear what Hillary has to say.

People tend to call the birthday girl ‘the lesser of two evils’—well, people, try this: you get yourself a law degree, spend some thirty-odd years in public service, be attacked by conservatives the whole time, raise a daughter, keep your marriage together, and start a world-class, global charity before you run for President, twice, while people say the ugliest things they can think of about you—then you, too, can be ‘the lesser of two evils’. Y’all’s got some fuckin nerve, is all I can say.

Have you seen the Republicans? Bunch of slimy toads—not a one of them I’d trust with grocery money. And lie—these bastards lie like they’re Michelangelo painting the Sistine ceiling—they lie like Mozart composed music—if an honest word came out of one of their mouths, I think the whole of Washington, D.C. would sink back into the swamp it came from. But the nice lady who wants to help children—she’s the dangerous criminal?—yeah, right. How stupid are we supposed to be?

You people get your heads on straight. Look at what’s in front of you and ask yourself, ‘Who am I gonna believe?’ Happy birthday, Ms. Clinton.

The Shifting Sands of Time (2016Oct19)


Wednesday, October 19, 2016                                         1:23 PM

Do you remember the ACA website roll-out? Gosh, what a mess—it took them weeks to make it work properly, right? And the furor, while it was still kludgey, was amazing, deafening—as if a buggy program could never be fixed. But now it works fine (better than the legislation, if we’re being honest about it) and nobody says ‘boo’ about it.

Opponents of Obamacare saw the bobbled roll-out as an opportunity to press their case—against the bill and the president, both. But the moment passed and now we are back to judging ACA on its merits, rather than the mechanics. Issues are always more vulnerable to criticism while they are still in flux—but success always changes the playing field.

The same could be said for the economy, wages, and the fight against ISIL. The meat of Donald Trump’s campaign is that ‘America is losing’. He talks of inner-city hell-scapes (even though crime rates are plummeting). He talks of job loss and high unemployment (even though employment has risen steadily for eight years). Stats on wage-increases show the biggest jump since the sixties. And with the siege of Mosul under weigh, and ahead of schedule, the idea that ISIL represents an existential threat to the USA becomes more and more of a fading boogeyman.

I’ll be interested to see in tonight’s debate whether Trump will get a pass, running on stats that were borderline when he declared two years ago—and are laughably out-of-date in October of 2016. While he’s been vaguely promising to somehow ‘make America great again’, Obama’s administration has been repairing the damage left by Bush, and exceeding the level of success our nation enjoyed before Dubya got his hands on the reins. Yes, Bush-43 did take a lot of the wind out of the sails of our ‘greatness’, but our incredible President Obama has undone all that, and moved beyond, to historically surpass our previous greatness.

People make a lot of noise about wanting the candidates to focus on issues—but they are. There is only one issue—Trump is unfit to be president. Hillary Clinton is as fit as a human being could possibly be. There’s your issue. You can dress it up, if you want—but we do not need a savior to repair all the ‘disasters’ of the Obama years—because they are small potatoes compared to all his enormous successes.

In fact, a case could be made that the whole idea of a ‘disruption’ candidate is an expression of pure frustration—and that slow, thoughtful change is the only reasonable way forward for the world’s greatest government. That is why the Educated demographic is fully backing Clinton, and the Uneducated are fully backing Trump—the uneducated, less mobile, more financially-insecure people are far more open to an emotional message, promising them the moon without any details about the journey.

So, in the end, not only is Trump wildly unfit for public office, but his mission to ‘bigly enGreaten’ America is an entirely unnecessary one. Competent public servants are already taking care of that, Drumpf—you can scurry back to your TV shows. Hillary will handle it.

What Have We Learned? (2016Oct18)


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Tuesday, October 18, 2016                                               8:32 PM

Tomorrow night is the third and final debate. For most people, it will be a spectacle, rather than an education. This campaign is on its second year—if you haven’t heard it all, already, you’re just not paying attention—and you haven’t seen a TV since 2014.

I have learned a lot about this country and the people who live in it. I learned more than I wanted to know about Trump. I have learned a lot about the media, especially media journalism. And, of course, I’ve learned about our next president, Hillary Clinton.

I find Hillary Clinton so impressive that, to my ear, all those who can’t abide her sound like a lot of sour grapes. She’s tough—in a very tough game—world power. You know those people who always win at Risk? Well, she does that—in real life. Do you know how rare it is for capable people to throw their lives away on this inexcusably wretched, yet crucially important, circus called national politics?

Only a martyr to public service like Hillary would put the intelligence and drive that most successful people put into forging empires of their own—into a lifetime of helping our ungrateful, apathetic asses. Look at the crap she has to take from us, before we will deign to allow her to work herself gray-haired, in the toughest job on earth, for four years. Oh, no, no—wait! We might prefer the racist pig idiot clown with the stupid face. Hmmm—let us think. Hmm—think, think, think. Well….

Are you joking? Are you seriously joking right now?

Watch the last debate—watch him tell every lie three times—he thinks that makes people believe it. Even children see through him. What is wrong with the grown-ups?

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History   (2016Oct13)


Thursday, October 13, 2016                                             1:44 PM

We all have history. I have incidents in my past of which I am not proud, things that make me wince to remember. But I tell myself that I learned from those mistakes, that I’ve become a better person by feeling the shame of past sins—I’ve come to realize how thoughtless behavior can feel to the person on the wrong end of it, and now I am more careful in my words and deeds.

I’ve also learned that mistakes can’t be undone. If confronted with my past, I tell myself, “Don’t deny that you hurt someone—that would just make it worse—like hurting them all over again.” It’s easy for me—I don’t have any dark secret to confess—I’ve simply been rude or thoughtless in my youth at certain points—and felt bad enough about it afterward that the memories haunt me.

Donald Trump didn’t coalesce into existence behind a podium one year ago—he has a history, too. Now, he prefers to label it a ‘media conspiracy’, but it used to be a reputation he was proud of—the wealthy Manhattanite man-about-town, with an eye for the ladies. His boasting, aboard Billy Bush’s bus, is an example of him propagating that rep—and his bragging about being the owner of a pageant, thus being able to pop into dressing rooms, jibes neatly with the accusations of then-fourteen-year-old girls who describe the same experience from their point of view.

Of all the blatantly transparent lies that Trump has told throughout the campaign, his denial of his own personal history is the biggest whopper so far. It must be dizzying, even for him, to go from bragging about this aspect of himself, to denying it as a filthy lie. I’m starting to think that Trump’s emphatic untruths are a subconscious compulsion—when he says, ‘Lock her up’, he’s really shouting to the world, “I should be locked up!” Perhaps that explains why he mirrors everything Secretary Clinton says, in reverse—he’s actually agreeing with her in the only way his ego will allow him to say it?

Who knows? I’m no psychiatrist. Yet, as a layman, I still feel confident in saying he has a screw loose. Millions of Americans find it appealing—that’s the real problem. I can see that he’s crazy—but how in the world do I get someone else to see it? I can’t put my eyes in someone else’s head.

I saw a Facebook comment this morning where someone said everything I have said, that Trump still won’t show his taxes, he’s horrible and unfit, etc., but ended with the conclusion that our country needs to be ‘disrupted’ by someone like him, because it is too ingrown and self-defeating. I don’t dismiss those points but, as I’ve said before, you don’t fix a computer by taking a hammer to it. And governing fifty states at once, plus being the world police, makes the USA as complicated as any computer. In many ways, it is more complex—people always make everything more complicated. Setting off a bomb, as a president, seems more an expression of frustration than a thoughtful judgement call.

Plus, Trump and the Republicans habitually downplay all the good news coming out of the latest stats. (Isn’t it funny how we value stats based partly on how well they agree with our opinions?) If you look at the stats, the idea of ‘four more years of Obama’ is hardly the threat they wish it sounded like. If a Democrat President with the entire Congress standing in his way could have this much success, imagine what Hillary could accomplish with a willing Senate, maybe even a House of Representatives.

This women’s-equality thing and inclusion-of-gays thing is working out just fine—to the outrage of the far right. Their only chance was to bring us backwards before the new attitudes could settle in. Trump was their shot at that. But it looks as though we may have dodged the bullet.

Trump’s campaign boils down to: ‘Who ya gonna believe?’ He does this because, in business, the answer is always ‘the bloated billionaire’. Unfortunately, this is politics, where the answer to ‘Who ya gonna believe?’ is never ‘the bloated billionaire’, it’s ‘the lifelong public servant’. Vote for Hillary.