Good News For Readers As Pulitzer Prizes Given To New York Times, Washington Post, The New Yorker

This has been another chaos-driven day due to Donald Trump, his cronies, and the laws they have broken.   So it seems fitting that I post some good news.

For decades The New York Times has landed on the doorsteps of the places I have lived.  Over the past 5 years The New Yorker lands in my mailbox.  And over the past year James has made sure The Washington Post digital subscription is accessible at our home.   The times in which we live demand  awareness of the workings of government.  The things that are most detestable in the news–almost on an hourly basis due to Trump–are the things we need to know the most about.  These publications have been front and center in making sure our democratic foundations as a country are protected.   They do that by making information available in a professional way.

I am very pleased with the impressive showing today as the Pulitzer Prizes were announced.

The New York Times and The New Yorker magazine won the Pulitzer Prize for public service on Monday for their reporting on sexual harassment that ushered in a reckoning about the treatment of women by powerful men in the uppermost ranks of Hollywood, politics, media and technology.

Beginning with revelations in The Times about the Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly, followed by reports about the film mogul Harvey Weinstein published by The Times and The New Yorker, the coverage set off a cascade of testimonials from women about abuse in the workplace, whether at a Beverly Hills hotel or a Ford Motor plant in the Midwest. By year’s end, what came to be known as the #MeToo movement had reshaped the modern conversation around gender and fairness.

At a time when President Trump regularly assails the news media, the Pulitzer board awarded its national reporting prize to The Times and The Washington Post, for coverage that unearthed possible ties between Russia and Mr. Trump’s inner circle. The dramatic story line continues to dominate Washington politics.

The Post also won the award for investigative reporting for its exposé of Roy S. Moore, the Republican Senate candidate in Alabama, whose bid for higher office was upended after The Post uncovered that he had groped and harassed multiple women, one as young as 14. Columns on Mr. Moore’s candidacy, by John Archibald of the Alabama Media Group in Birmingham, Ala., won the commentary prize.

The Times received three awards in all, including the prize for editorial cartooning for a series that chronicled a Syrian refugee family’s entry into the United States. The public service prize was the sixth time The Times has received the prestigious award in the more than century-long history of the Pulitzers, which are announced annually by Columbia University to recognize excellence in journalism and letters.

What Perversion Was Sean Hannity Involved In To Need Michael Cohen’s Fix?

Sean Hannity, the outspoken Faux News host who has been waging war on the air against special counsel Robert Mueller and is one of Donald Trump’s biggest defenders, was revealed this afternoon to be one of only three clients that Michael Cohen, the Trump’s personal attorney, had during 2017 and 2018.

In a legal filing earlier in the day, Cohen and his attorneys sought to shield Hannity’s name from becoming public.  But during Monday’s court proceedings, which are tied to a dispute over materials seized in an FBI raid of Cohen’s home and office, U.S. District Judge Kimba Wood ordered Cohen’s attorney to disclose the client’s identity.  It is not known why Hannity retained Cohen.

But we do know that one does not retain Cohen for a parking ticket.

Cohen is hired when there are two drunk hookers and a llama in the car when that ticket is written.

This story is going to be fun as it plays out!

“Mission Accomplished!” Is Not True For Syria

The one thing you can bet on today is that the Trump White House will not be talking about a policy imitative for Syria.  After taking the correct military response to President Assad’s government using chemical weapons Donald Trump stated over the weekend, “Mission Accomplished!”

Not even close!

No one ever thought Trump had seriously studied the Syrian problem or examined ways in which the United States or our allies might play a positive role in that troubled land.  But one might hope that he would have instructed others with skills and background to formulate some policy ideas.   As the months have passed one thing is clear.  There is no advancement with what Syria needs most–that being a road map to the future.

While I advocated for a strong response to Assad’s use of chemical weapons I also–again–called for policy moves to safeguard the people, and allow for talks that must include the status of Assad.    There must be free elections.  There must also be a process where the World Court can bring to justice those who have created so many horrific acts.

The Trump Administration  stated this weekend they hoped the action taken Friday night would allow for diplomacy to advance.  But also this weekend it was clear the White House was not about to offer new ideas about how that might happen.

So, there is no way that anyone can agree with using the words “Mission Accomplished!”

NYT Editorial: Trump Striking At Foundation Of Government Should He Try To Stop Investigation

Powerful.  Well-written.  Thoughtful.

News reports point to a growing possibility that  Trump may act to cripple or shut down an investigation by the nation’s top law-enforcement agencies into his campaign and administration. Lawmakers need to be preparing now for that possibility because if and when it comes to pass, they will suddenly find themselves on the edge of an abyss, with the Constitution in their hands.

Make no mistake: If Mr. Trump takes such drastic action, he will be striking at the foundation of the American government, attempting to set a precedent that a president, alone among American citizens, is above the law.

What can seem now like a political sideshow will instantly become a constitutional crisis … But if the president does move against the investigators, it will be up to Congress to affirm the rule of law, the separation of powers and the American constitutional order. The miserable polarization and partisan anger that have been rising in American life for decades will hit a new crescendo, and that will present congressional Republicans with a heavy burden indeed.

Think About Past Presidents When Pondering James Comey Interview

James and I had a dinner guest last evening so the viewing of the much-talked about interview with James Comey was recorded and watched at about midnight.  It was too late to post some thoughts following the show, but there was no way not to comment now that the sun is up—but just under the clouds.  (At least Madison is not under a pile of snow!)

One line shot out at me and it was of such gravitas that I needed to locate it word by word this morning.

“Our president must embody respect and adhere to the values that are at the core of this country, the most important being truth.  This president is not able to do that. He is morally unfit to be president.”

To say that I was verbally pushed back into the rocking chair at that point in the interview would not be an overstatement.   One would just expect that a president regardless of party or the era in which he served our nation would have core values and sensibilities along with honor and truth.  But that is not the case in the United States at the present time, and that fact was called out on national television by the former FBI Director.

Think about the ones who have served the nation from the Oval Office.   Teddy Roosevelt, FDR, Truman, Ike, Carter, Reagan.  Pick and chose any you like, or those that you did not like.   Not one former president can be placed at the same low level as Trump now holds.  Every other president had a core foundation that is required to lead the nation.

Comey continued this theme by saying Trump is “someone for whom truth is not a high value” and who treats women “like they’re pieces of meat.”

The interview was just another example as why civics education is needed to be ramped up in our schools.   Clearly the voters who cast a ballot for Trump did not have the ability to reason their way to a vote that was good for then nation.   That was made clear by Comey.

The Most Disturbing Image The Night Of Missile Attack on Syria

From the back of the White House room, as Donald Trump spoke to the nation about the need to strike Syria over the chemical weapons attack, stood these two people.  Nothing more needs to be said.