Skip to content

Trump Not Providing Nation With Leadership Anyone Believes In

February 27, 2020

1

What will happen–this blogger has asked since 2016–when the nation meets a crisis–and Donald Trump is the one who needs to show resolve, intelligence, and credibility?  That moment has arrived and what we knew would happen, is now playing out for the world to witness.

Only days ago Trump stated that all we needed to do was wait until April for the coronavirus to come to an end. Prior to that Trump has undermined science at every step, and cut federal budgets that deal with medical research and preparedness.

Today the news from those who have a finger on the national economy, and look ahead to see where trend lines point for future growth or decline, sent another powerful message to the Trump White House.

The US stock market sold off sharply as worries over the virus went up, and up. The three main indexes fell into correction territory and are on track for their worst week since the financial crisis.  To put a fine line of the facts, the Dow dropped 1,191 points, or 4.4% in its worst one-day point drop in history.

Markets operate on a flurry of hard data, but also navigate daily with unique psychology that plays into every action taken.  Therefore, it is most obvious Trump has lost all credibility with the financial markets and those who are grounded in reality.  Everyone saw Trump at the Wednesday press conference in the White House Press Room, but he looked like a boy in his dad’s suit compared to the intellects who stood around him.  There was nothing in his words or presentation that allowed for one iota of credibility to have been created.

Placing Vice-President Pence at the top of the plan was another wrong decision from the Trump Administration.  No one finds truth or honestly to come from this White House, so it was imperative to have selected someone from outside to talk to a nation yearning for the insight they can believe in.  But, sadly, that was not done.

The only thing Pence does effectively is stare at Trump’s neck when the cameras are on–otherwise, he is a lightweight, as evidenced by his lack of understanding as to why free needle exchanges are prudent when working to combat the spread of HIV.

Trump told the nation Wednesday that the cases in the US of this virus could be down to zero within a week.  But the professionals with an actual education who addressed the nation from the same platform alerted us to prepare for a pandemic and possible disruption to their lives.

The markets know that production and supply lines are already impacted from the virus and also that there is no solid leadership being exhibited in the US that can play a role to deal forthrightly with what is unfolding.  And it will only get worse.

Thanks To NRA Your Wednesday Mass Shooting Is In Milwaukee

February 26, 2020

Here we go again, America.  The NRA bought your congress,  and their followers continually demonstrate they love their guns more than the nation itself.

Multiple people were killed including a gunman during a shooting rampage on the Milwaukee campus of Molson Coors on Wednesday afternoon.

Extremists leaders at the NRA, along with their following who are short on logic and common sense have placed us where on any given day the average citizen knows they can be killed with a gun.

Every nation has angry men and mental health issues galore, but it is only here in America that we say to destabilized people, here is an assault weapon!  And please do not forget to stock up on your ammo supply, too.   This policy did not just happen but instead was developed over time through the efforts of the NRA.

When this nation allowed the wack-jobs at the NRA to bastardize the meaning of the Second Amendment, allowed them to buy elected officials, and turned the nation into their personal shooting gallery so to then incite a ‘need’ to further purchase from gun manufacturers so to feel ‘safe’…well…that is when the republic was allowed to shift on its axis.

It is no surprise that the gun industry gives a lot of money to the NRA.  That incestuous relationship is one of the reasons the collapse of any spine from a huge portion of the Republican Party to stop the bloodshed is most troubling.

Today the coffins need to be bought in Milwaukee.  Due to the NRA anyone can spin a wheel akin to one at a carnival show to ponder where that need will land tomorrow.  That is the reality of America who now is forced to live under the loaded political gun of the NRA.

Americans For Prosperity Full Of (Blarney), And Meet My New Buddy Tim Phillips

February 26, 2020

Earlier this week I filled out a survey from Americans For Prosperity. It was the epitome of a push poll, and as such, I shoved it right back with honest answers.

Since then I am now buddies with Tim Phillips as he sends me notes and updates and links to guide my faithful footsteps leading up to Election Day.   Soon we will be trading pics of the family and our fave potato salad recipe leading up to grilling season.

But before we get to the warm fuzzy back-slapping emails I must address his lack of honesty and, therefore, credibility.  He wrote that he has the desire of an America where truly free markets allow for free and prosperous people.

I am not sure if Tim knows that means he will need to jettison the umbilical cord he has attached to Donald Trump.  Free trade and Trump are about as much a non-sequitur as Trump and salad greens.  So for Tim to spin a fondness for free trade—a policy that this liberal blogger actually believes in–at the same time he slips closer to Trump only makes for laugher on the receiving end of his email.

In another email my buddy let it be known that age is creeping upon him. He is having trouble reading.  He stated I saw in your response that you indicated that you want “policy research and analysis on the most important issues of today,” so I wanted to send over a guide that our team recently published.

What I actually stated in the survey was the option, “other” and then added the following.

I would ask that basic civics books be paid for from your organization and handed out at the gates to the White House and also to each office of Republican congressmen and senators.

It seems Tim Phillips is upset about our nation’s debt.  Had he been reading the views from noted economists in 2017 he would have come to learn of the staggering debt which was predicted due to Trump’s tax cut.    It was reported in October 2018, thanks to Trump’s massive tax cut for corporations and wealthy Americans, the federal government collecting 22% less corporate tax revenue than in 2017, and tax revenue overall was flat. That’s why the deficit soared to $779 billion in 2018, 17 percent higher than in 2017.

My buddy Tim concludes his note today with the following.

You may agree that since most of the people in our country do not have an advanced law degree, they tend to “tune out” complex legislation. And it’s when we aren’t paying close attention that lawmakers could “sneak in” things that do not align with our principles.

No, Tim , I do not agree.  I feel, instead, that those who push as many emails through your system as you obviously do, that you might become an educator and ante up with facts and reason.  The only intention you have, as I have been able to prove above, is a partisan hack-job with the truth.

I will share my recipe for summer flavors but you really need to crack open some books but spend less time sniffing the bonding glue.

New Madison School Superintendent Undermined

February 26, 2020

There was a congressman who came from a rather low rung on the ladder of life.  His education was limited.  He did not possess the good looks for a politician, and reports are that his voice was high-pitched.  He even lost a U.S. Senate election, which seemed to auger ill for any further expectations of holding elected office.  But that same man, when given a chance to show his leadership skills, put into effect the Emancipation Proclamation.

That is how life often proceeds.  More often than we realize.

I found it truly sad to read the coverage in the Wisconsin State Journal about the verbal attack on incoming Madison School District Superintendent Matthew Gutierrez.  A group of leaders among the local black community penned a letter lamenting the school board’s decision in not naming their choice for the open position.

The group called the process the school board used for the final selection as ‘flawed’.  But in reading the article the reason for the backlash from the signees of the letter revolves around a desire to have a superintendent with more experience with larger school districts, and more cultural diversity.  There seems to be no evidence that all the finalists for superintendent were not treated the same, allowed access to the public,  or that outside groups were not provided opportunities to pose questions.

To call the process out after the fact, based on an outcome that runs counter to the desires of any group, is unseemly.  It very well might be that the process ran perfectly, but some of the candidates were flawed. The evidence regarding the other two finalists, as best as one can gleam due to the non-disclosure agreements they hide behind,  does not place either one of them in a positive light.

Which takes us back to Gutierrez.  Having now publically taken a smear at his hiring a vocal segment of the city has started his tenure in Madison in a most unfortunate rut.   If there had been a desire for education standards to rise, graduation rates to increase, and public faith in the school system to be enhanced it would have been more intelligent and professional for the letter writers to have linked arms with the one now selected.

Pragmatism is often forgotten by those who press forward with their agendas.  That is once again the case in Madison.  What is sad in this case, too, are the headwinds that Gutierrez now must walk into as he takes on the role we all want him to succeed at for our schools and students.  The needless disruption, after the process concluded, says more about the ones who signed their names to the letter, than the one they are dismissive of.

I am hoping for a Lincoln moment.  We all should.

Your Tuesday Perspective (On Bernie Sanders)

February 25, 2020

As the Democratic Party is now about to run at full steam towards Super Tuesday I think we need to calm down just two seconds and ponder a fact.

As of now, three states have been involved in the process and about 687,000 Democrats have voted — 156,000 of them for Bernie Sanders — representing about two-tenths of one percent of the nation’s population.

Sanders has money and a determined machine to support his path in the days and weeks to come, but today the hype over it all is just that.  Hype.

The vetting that is about to take place for Sanders–especially concerning his views on international policy–will be illuminating.  In just a few hours on Monday, his adoration for a Fidel Castro literacy program was headlined.  Nothing wrong with literacy, but no smart and grounded candidate lauds Castro and interjects that into a contest where the objective is to beat Trump in the fall.

Then it was reported that when American hostages were being held in Iran starting in 1979 Sanders was giving vocal support to the entities who stood with Iran. 

Virtually all Americans—Democrats, Republicans and independents—united in support of the hostages and the international call for their freedom. One prominent political figure on the 2020 stage, then almost completely unknown, stood apart by joining a Marxist-Leninist party that not only pledged support for the Iranian theocracy, but also justified the hostage taking by insisting the hostages were all likely CIA agents. Who was that person? It was Bernie Sanders.  

Sanders would like the public to believe, as an AP story put it, that “democratic socialism [is] the economic philosophy that has guided his political career.” But that has not always been the case. In 1977, he left the tiny left-wing Liberty Union Party of Vermont that he’d co-founded, and in 1980 instead aligned himself with the Socialist Workers Party (SWP), the self-proclaimed Trotskyist revolutionary party, became its presidential elector in Vermont, and campaigned for its candidates and platform that defended the Iranian hostage seizure.  

Yes, much will happen with this process as we move to nominate our candidate for the fall ticket.  So do not hyperventilate if you fear what Sanders could do to the ticket if nominated, just as others should take air from a paper bag thinking this is all over and Sanders is the winner.

This is what a runner calls the warm-up exercises before the all-out strides take place.

When A Bush Can’t Win In Texas

February 25, 2020

Every now and then one single story places the political times in which we live into context.  This is such a story.   This article demonstrates how far the Republican Party has drifted from Reagan and Bush to the rapid xenophobic right.  Pierce Bush is campaigning for a suburban House seat as a compassionate conservative — but will that fly in the era of Trump?

The son of Neil Bush and grandson of George H.W. Bush speaks reverently of the contributions of immigrants and has dedicated much of his career to a youth mentorship nonprofit, taking a compassionate approach to conservatism befitting his family name. At a recent campaign event that drew more than 100 Asian Americans to a mansion here, dozens lined up for photos with him before crowding into a small concert hall to hear Bush tout his campaign to keep ‘the most diverse congressional district in the entire United States of America’ in GOP hands.

[Bush] has to make it through two rounds of GOP primaries in Donald Trump’s Republican Party, a test of the public’s appetite for a Bush — even in Texas — at a time when his family name has been disparaged by the president.

His predicament is an extreme version of the conundrum plaguing the party in swing districts: The candidate who’s perhaps best positioned to win sometimes struggles to gain traction in a system that rewards blind fealty to the president. The open-seat race Texas’s 22nd District, which spans the southern suburbs of Houston, has drawn a massive field of 15 Republicans. Most private polling indicates a fierce three-way battle to advance to a runoff from the March 3 primary, and a very real chance Bush gets boxed out.

Local Newspaper–Wisconsin State Journal–Has Responsibility For Nation’s Health

February 24, 2020

When I pulled the Wisconsin State Journal from its blue wrapper on Monday morning my eyes went immediately to the banner, as it always does. There at the top of the page was a photo concerning the Badger basketball team and a notice about school students who were helping to make a mark about the environment.  But it was another item that caught my eye and caused concern.

IMG_0605

It was titled Another shot at Schiff and then in smaller print, Trump accuses California congressman of leaking Intel from classified briefing.  It was a concerning moment to me and I suspect many who ponder the condition that our republic now finds itself.  And what must be done to alter that course, for the sake of the nation.

The assault on truth and facts our institutions and republic suffer from is underscored with claims and assertions constructed by Trump that are nothing more than rants and whims.  Facts and documentation never enter into his mind as he bloviates and tweets.  It is bad enough to have such a person sitting in the Oval Office acting in such a fashion.  Worse yet, is to have media operations and news companies continue repeating his misleading statements.  That can only be termed as a great disservice to the nation.

I understand, with my own experience from a radio newsroom atmosphere, why the Wisconsin State Journal can find a rationalization to run the story.  The congressman in question made a response to Trump’s baseless assertion, and a spokesperson for the vice president made a statement about the matter on a Sunday morning news show.  So it falls under the strict definition of news.  On that slippery hill, I guess if Trump claimed the earth was flat and the likes of Carl Sagan refuted it, that too, could be called news.

But does the way the WSJ covered the story Monday meet the larger needs of the moment in which our nations finds itself?  And it is on those terms we need to start a dialogue in the nation about press coverage. 

How should this newspaper have covered the story when it is clear an autocratic figure uses the media to convey false and misleading claims?  What responsibility does the Journal have to every citizen to make sure they are as informed and educated about the actual story, as opposed to the desire of a politician to play the press and the citizenry?

In no way am I tackling the overall professionalism of the Journal.  The newspaper does a most credible job of informing the public on a daily basis.  But at a time when the nation requires of us all, and especially reporters, to conduct ourselves in the highest standards possible one then has to call into question what many people read Monday morning.

Trump’s baseless assertion made the banner of the paper, while the story landed on page twelve.  Many people likely read the banner blurb but never turned to the article.  They very well may think the words were of merit as they made the top of the paper.  That nugget will be stored, consciously or not, in their personal data bank.

IMG_0606

But when readers turned to the inside of the paper they would have found a headline that was simply one that can not be defended.  Trump: Schiff leaked Russia intel.  There is simply no fact of any kind to allow for such a claim to be made by Trump, and more damaging for the nation, no verification of any kind which would allow the Fourth Estate to propagate such a claim with such a bold headline.

I know this is one banner from one newspaper about one story.  But the fact is this larger concern about the press can be made almost on a daily basis.  It is imperative that newspapers such as the Wisconsin State Journal and other media organizations continuously call out when Trump misleads the nation and undermines truth and honesty.  The reason to do this is not based on a conservative or liberal, Democratic or Republican rationale.  Instead, this has to do with the long-term needs professional journalism must reckon with for rejuvenating their standing among the public, and for the bedrock values that any republic demands to be sturdy for its long-term survival.

We are at a  time like never before witnessed in our national story and it is essential the press do their best, not only for the daily needs of news consumers, but also for the greater and longer call that comes from the pages of history.  I do not want, in any shape manner or form, a partisan press, but I do want reporters and newspapers to state clearly what is, and what is not, factual.

Anything less plays to autocratic forces that are at work in this land.

%d bloggers like this: