Let's Fix This Country

A Country So Divided Even Wearing a Mask Is Political

President Trump has said that people choose to wear masks to show dislike of him. He has it backward. Those wearing masks hope to avoid a horrible disease. It is those who refuse to wear a mask who are making the statement, showing their support of Trump by following his lead: the example the president has set to not wear a mask if it doesn't suit you.

"I think wearing a face mask as I greet presidents, prime ministers, dictators, kings, queens, I don't know, somehow, I don't see it for myself. I just don't."

The strange irony is that Trump, who views restoration of a healthy economy as key to his re-election, condones the very behavior necessary to keep people healthy enough to rebuild that economy.

There may be a deadly pandemic loose in the world, but for Mr. Trump self-image takes priority. A mask would make him appear weak, seems to be his thinking, as if his mask-free countenance will make SARS-CoV-2 sound retreat. With everyone around him tested daily, he can feign bravery, strutting defiance for his followers to see. Playing to them, he mocks Joe Biden, saying he's hiding in his basement, and fearfully masked when he ventures out.

Bagley. The Salt Lake City Tribune.

His followers copy him, adopting ideological tribalism. To that they add their own proud self-image of being an American standing tall for freedom and personal liberty. No one gets to tell them what to do.

Former Major League Baseball player Aubrey Huff says, "Hell, I would rather die from coronavirus than to live the rest of my life in fear and wearing a damn mask". No you wouldn't, Aubrey. A Costco…

the presidency

Revolt of the Generals. The President vs. Posse Comitatus

The admirals as well

The Monday that began June followed a weekend of protests in Washington. "What happened to the city last night was a total disgrace", President Trump fumed. In a heated session in the Oval Office, he argued for invoking the Insurrection Act so as to give him the authority to deploy United States military troops within the United States. “We need to get control of the streets. We need 10,000 troops up here. I want it right now”, said the president according to a Pentagon official in the room.

Trump was apparently dissuaded by Joint Chiefs chairman Mark Milley and Attorney General William Barr not to go to the extreme of decreeing the Act. Perhaps as penance Trump publicly put Milley in charge of confronting protesters and throttling looters. But he announced,

"As we speak, I am dispatching thousands and thousands of heavily armed soldiers, military personnel and law enforcement officers to stop the rioting, looting, vandalism, assaults and wanton destruction of property."

Approximately 1,600 active-duty federal troops, brought in from Ft. Bragg, N.C. and Camp Drum N.Y.,
Troops at the Lincoln Memorial.

took up positions on the…

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the presidency

Is Trump Thinking About Quitting?

Is President Trump toying with the idea of quitting the race? Given his penchant for playing to crowds, might he choose the Republican convention in August as the moment to stun the devoted with an announcement that he is withdrawing, leaving Mike Pence as the default candidate or throwing the convention into chaos as others grapple for the nomination?

This conjecture made a bit of news at 6:00 AM one morning this past week when Joe Scarborough, host of MSNBC's "Morning Joe", began wondering whether the president is trying to lose. His surmise was triggered by Trump's Justice Department filing a brief with the Supreme Court asking it to strike down the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in its entirety.

In the midst of the first pandemic in a century, with cases on the rise in 26 states, many setting daily records, and on the same day that nearly half a million people (486,954) enrolled in Obamacare presumably for having lost health insurance during the coronavirus shutdown, Trump would take away health insurance for some 20 million people and their families.

With his opponent, Joe Biden, calling this action "most cruelly of all", how could such an action against the people, so many of whom probably being members of his own voting base, make any sense… Read More »

the democracy

The Nightmare Scenario of the Coming Election »

Medical experts are certain that Covid-19 will return in the fall, compounded by the regular flu season, setting off a new wave of illness and death if Americans slack off in distancing and masking, the latter a practice they have so far not adopted.

In the midst of this comes the presidential election on November 3rd. A debate rages as to whether it is sensible to require people to gather at polling stations where they must wait on lines, walking through each other's wake, ultimately to touch screens and devices that others have handled before them. Why not make mail-in ballots available to everyone?

The Republican reaction to that proposition has been apoplectic, with President Trump in the lead. They are waging a battle against voting by
Ballots at the post office

mail using the claim that absentee ballots are subject to fraud. Historically, there has been vanishingly small cheating to back up this claim, but given an election in which the incumbent is either feverishly adored or icily despised, we should perhaps make allowances for an increase this year.

What can be given no allowance is the dishonest claim that voter fraud is the reason for Republican alarm. (If fraud were the problem, wouldn't that threaten both parties?) … Read More »

the purge

Trump Purging Whoever Challenges His Administration »

Especially not dinner parties hosted by the Pompeos

Last July, immediately after Robert Mueller's feckless performance before Congress laid to rest his report two years in the making, Donald Trump declared to an audience of young people, "I can do anything I want as president of the United States". He set about employing that doctrine the very next day with the call to the Ukrainian president that led to his impeachment and went on to expand its scope. He ordered the White House to turn over not a single document to Congress in the
        Steve Linick                  Kristi Grimm                   Glenn Fine             Michael Atkinson

impeachment proceedings, disallowed anyone from his administration to testify (a few defied that order), and straight-armed all attempts by Congress to exercise its constitutional role of oversight of the…

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