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Agree, Trump will never be removed by the Senate.

But I really don't see a Right-Left Civil War in the future, least of all having anything to do with Trump. First, his support is not extensive by any means (he did lose the Popular Vote). And I can't see the vast majority of Trump supporters risking life, limb, and 401Ks for him. There are of course those who would, but I see them as a small minority, and primarily rural. They could cause some minor disruption - as in the case with that rancher a few years ago - but that's all. I suppose if the military sided with them, then we'd have real trouble. But I can't see that happening either. I know there are a lot of Trump supporters in the military, but are the majority willing to risk everything if things turn out wrong - sacrifice career, life, and limb? I don't see it.

At this point, I just want the toxic divide between conservatives, progressives, and the public to end; the longer it goes on, the greater the toll on our mental health will be, and the more people will vote for a meteor in 2020 to come down and end it all. I'd be tempted to.

I agree that the Senate will not vote (i.e. convict) Trump out of office. I also tend to agree with Kathleen that most people are doing too well to risk it all in a civil war.

However, I also agree with Michael's assessment of could happen within the military if the Senate did convict AND the evidence and reasons were shady and weak and/or being specially applied to Trump when everyone else has done it/is doing it (which it certainly seems to be at this point).

A couple of other points; the typical radical Democrat (an increasing proportion of the total) are low education/low information. They don't understand that an impeachment in the House is merely the political equivalent of a Grand Jury True Bill. Basically, the House is saying that they find sufficient cause for a trial to take place - and that trial, of course, happens in the Senate. When the Senate fails to convict and remove, there are going to be millions of "sky screamers", pink hat types, Antifa types, socialists, etc who are not only going to be very disappointed, but also angry that a "guilty" Trump was let off the hook by his GOP buddies in the Senate. Scurrilous Democrat politicians and the leftist media will play to the prevailing ignorance and toss gasoline on that fire.

Meanwhile, conservatives will have been paying attention to the impeachment proceedings in the House and then the actual evidence in the Senate and will conclude that a genuine coup d'etat was attempted (again) by an increasingly radical Democrat party.

IMO, we are about to reach a point of irreconciable differences in this country. Maybe we're already there.

As to conservative being too fat and happy to take up arms - I think that the number of well armed people in rural areas who are not too fat and happy is being underestimated greatly. Ditto military members.

There's something else that forces a caveat to Michael's and Kathleen's assessment. That is that while many conservatives are doing well now (as are minorities and everyone else under the Trump economy), the Democrats want to take all of that away. That have made that clear in no uncertain terms. They want to tax the bejeezus out of successful people, they want to take our guns, they want to take our healthcare, they hate Christianity, they want to force us to tell lies (like there are really 87 genders), they want to remove freedom of speech (example: in NYC it is now a crime punishable by a $250,000 fine and or jail time for using the term "illegal alien"), they want open borders and to flood the country with illegal aliens and give the illegals free everything off the backs of hard working successful Americans; and many not so well of Americans too.

So, many conservative recognize that the prosperity they are currently enjoying would quickly vanish under a Democrat control of government. Thus, there would be a reason to fight; to protect what they have and, if they wait too long, because they have nothing left to lose.

Remember, the American revolution was over taxation without representation. Conservatives would definitely not represented and heavily taxed. The final straw that started the shooting, was the Brits marching on an arsenal in an attempt to confiscate guns.

On a personal note that might help illustrate conservative thinking, I would take up arms and fight. I would most definitely NOT engage in random terrorism. There would have to be a real counter revolutionary army that has a good chance of winning.

I believe the Democrats are involved in a revolution to radically change this country into fascist state controlled from the top down by global corporate interests and elites in the education system who would work for the corporate interests as thought police, etc. Basically America would look like China. People like me would be deemed "enemies of the people" and as such would enjoy few, if any, civil liberties. There would be massive redistribution of wealth. There would be new arbitrary laws issued every day concerning every day activities and thoughts. Social media would be used to identify enemies of the people . There would be state control of information. Obtaining information from non-state controlled sources would be a serious crime. All of this happens now in China and it is apparent to many of us that this is the Democrats play book. The Democrats are not moderating themselves. They grow more radical every day. I have been following what comes out of their mouths by actually listening to them (painful but necessary) as opposed to relying on what the media tells me they're saying. What I hear is shocking.

I cannot live like that and will not.

I say the best way to fight this is at the ballot box, but if liberals are just going to undo elections, then the only choice is to fight them to the death now, while we still can. Some things are worth fighting - and even dying - for.

On a podcast by Reason magazine (libertarian) editors a couple of days ago, one of them said that no more than three Republican senators would vote to impeach unless 20 of them did. IOW, they would feel each other out as things went along and not do anything individualistic. They would act like a pack to either absolve or convict.

He also said the the factor that might lead to a conviction would be public poll numbers. If Mitch McConnell sees, he said, that the public was abandonning Trump, and large numbers of GOP congressmen would lose their seats in 2020, he would huddle with various opinion-leading GOP senators and decide to tell Trump he must go, or he'd be convicted.

They could offer him an immunity deal to leave, as happened apparently with Nixon. But that created blowback when it was detected.

A final thought - we are already in a civil war. The Left seeks to take control of the country and radically change it. They think they can get away with doing so without firing a shot. They plan on achieving victory by brainwashing children in the education system, propaganda via the media, and shaming opponents and causing them to lose their jobs and be, more or less, unpersonned.

It is very foolish of the left to believe they can accomplish their mission bloodlessly.

But make no mistake, they declared war on "bitter clingers" and "Deplorables" many years ago. Trump was the beginning of the counter revolution.

PS: I should have added that I think a conviction is possible, because I think (as I said in a comment on Part 1 of this topic) that Trump is going to be hit by trials for his personal and business-related misdeeds in the next 12 months. These scandals will either get added to the indictment or create such a negative climate of public opinion and such bad poll numbers that McConnell will throw in the towel.

One preparatory step toward a "civil war" would be the rejuvenation of the local voluntary militia units that existed in the Clinton years. (Remember them?) There were lots of them. But they would probably just be gesturing this time, as they were under Clinton.

Unless the Dems decided to go on a firearms-confiscation push, instead of waiting a year or two. That would create "incidents"(shootouts) that could escalate. Attempted firearms confiscation (by the Redcoats at Lexington and Concord) was what set off the American Revolution.

BTW, In the year after the raid on Harper's Ferry (a gloomy place I visited once, long ago), volunteer militias were unofficially formed throughout the South, training members in matters military and electing officers, etc. They were a proto army. But, as MP noted, the parallel to today doesn't exist, because the two sides aren't geographically separated now.

MP: "He would be unlikely to agree to leave office in response to an impeachment and conviction that he regards as fundamentally corrupt and unlawful."

Then the case would go to the Supreme Court. If it ruled against Trump 9–0, public opinion would force him to go. I think the Supremes would try to find unanimity or, failing that, informally tell Trump (via one of the justices on his side) to leave before a majority ruling against him, to spare the country.

There'd be room for a lot of drama in that situation. Family members might have a lot of influence on him. I think they might urge him to leave, if things looked hopeless. Maybe some of the people suing him would pledge to drop their suits if he resigned.

the Democrats have not voted for impeachment yet. There is no doubt the Courts would find in Trumps not to respond to subpoena that violate executive privilege or issues involving Foreign relations as that is his Constitutional authority not theirs.
It is highly unlikely the senate would vote for impeachment. The other thing we are forgetting is Durham/Barrs nd Horowitz investigations.
While they may not provide as much punch as Fox would lead you to think they will surely show Clinton and Obama involving foreign nations. This will point to a giant Hypocrisy in the Democrats efforts.

As for New York States partisan witch hunt all it might find happened before Trump was in office is not an impeachable offense. This Could help them in the election though.

The joint Chief of Staffs would likely take over the government in a situation where they felt impeachment proceedings were possibly unconstitutional.
They would turn the government over to the Vice president pending a Supreme Court decision, and a new election. Trump would be treated as if incapacitated that is the protocol. Any attempt for a democratic take over would be blocked.

The CIA would be in big trouble with the Joint Chiefs if it comes to his and they find(which they are) to be deeply involved with it. In atrial in the senate all the things that the Dems are hiding will most certainly see air.

"PS: I should have added that I think a conviction is possible, because I think (as I said in a comment on Part 1 of this topic) that Trump is going to be hit by trials for his personal and business-related misdeeds in the next 12 months. These scandals will either get added to the indictment or create such a negative climate of public opinion and such bad poll numbers that McConnell will throw in the towel."

Roger, I'm sorry, but what you say is 180 degrees opposite of the effect that all of that would have (and is having). It also kind of makes my point about Democrats being low information. Their media sources keep them in a cocoon.

Even the premise of this latest coup d'etat attempt is rife with hypocrisy that does not escape conservatives.
1. The Clinton Campaign hired Steele to dig up dirt of Trump. Steele is a Brit (i.e. a foreigner) who works for a foreign govt. Steele went to the...OMG!!!!!...RUSSIANS!!!! to get dirt on Trump.
2. Hunter Biden is a useless coke-head that got drummed out of the Navy for violating drug use policies. While his daddy was VP of the USA, he lands a $50K/month "job" in a Ukrainian company.
3. The Bidens received at least $1.5 million from China (also a foreign country last I checked) for reasons unknown.

These are not disputed facts.

But Trump cannot look into corruption involving US aid to the Ukrainians?

Come one man. Who do lefties think they're convincing? Certainly not Trump supporters.

Clearly there is unequal application of standards in a very very serious game.

All it would take is 2 million armed Trump supporters out of tens of millions. That's more than the total US military and the US military is spread out all over the world. They're going to just abandon their posts to deal with domestic issues? I don't think so. And that assumes that some of the military wouldn't defect to support the counter-revolution. I am positive many would. Military officers have it drilled into them that they must refuse an unlawful order. Many would see a removal of Trump on such thin gruel as unlawful.

We have seen lefties like Maxine Waters shouting "Impeach fohty one" since the day Trump was elected. We saw the Russia hoax. We saw the fine people hoax (Trump specifically said "I don't mean the Neo-Nazis"). We saw the Mueller investigation fail. We saw lefties try to ruin the reputation and approval of Kavanaugh with vicious unsubstantiated allegations. We see this Ukraine nonsense as just another attempt to undo the election by a bunch of radical sore losers that want to wreck.
We don't take any of the allegations seriously.

I live in Trump country and I'm telling you that liberals, in their urban enclaves, exist in a bubble and have no sense of the pulse of the rest of the country.

Just to be clear, impeachment proceedings are not a "coup." The process was written into the Constitution by the Founding Fathers in order to safeguard the country against a president overreaching their authority and/or committing criminal acts.

I agree with your assessment, Roger.

"Just to be clear, impeachment proceedings are not a 'coup.'"

Oh, I dunno. This sorta looks like a coup.

1. The "whistleblower" is a registered Democrat who reportedly worked for Joe Biden when Biden was VP. Democrats are taking extraordinary precautions to prevent his/her identity from becoming known.

2. The "whistleblower" consulted with congressional Democrat Adam Schiff for six weeks before filling his report. Schiff initially lied about these contacts.

3. The rules about whistleblowing were inexplicably changed to allow hearsay two weeks before the "whistleblower's" hearsay report was filed. (The media tried to debunk this story, but as I understand it, the story is accurate.) The rules appear to have been changed specifically to allow this report to be filed, which suggests collusion at a deep level of the bureaucracy.

4. Nancy Pelosi announced that Trump was guilty of an impeachable offense before the transcript of the phone call was even released.

5. Adam Schiff recited a purely fictional version of the call during a media-covered hearing, convincing many people that it was the real thing.

6. The initial charge was that Trump pressured Zelenskyy into reopening a probe of Burisma. It now appears that the probe had been reopened four months before Trump's phone call, and before Zelenskyy had even been sworn in.

7. The House followed certain procedures in the two most recent impeachment proceedings (Nixon and Clinton). It's eschewing those procedures this time. There's been no vote authorizing an impeachment inquiry (previously thought to be essential), and the hearings will be held behind closed doors. Apparently, Republicans will not be permitted to call witnesses of their own or to question any witnesses. It's hard to imagine Democrats tolerating these rules if the parties were reversed.

8. The whole thing has been fast-tracked to culminate in a vote around Thanksgiving, even though no testimony has even been taken yet.

9. Congressman Al Green has said, "I'm concerned that if we don't impeach this president, he will get re-elected." That makes the political motivation pretty clear.

I think it's a coup being carried out under color of authority — a coup or putsch dressed up in quasi-legal, pseudo-Constitutional trappings. And I really fear that the left does not understand the dangers. They're underestimating the blowback if Trump voters think their vote has been nullified by a Deep State cabal.

Trump has committed enough open crimes and corrupt bargains that could impeach dozens of normal presidents. The Ukraine Calls were just the easiest to prove and they were collaborated by other sources, including a second whistleblower and Trump's own dammning summarized release of the call transcript.

Trump has also shown that he would not hesitate throw his own people under the bus if it means saving his own skin. Michael Cohen, Paul Manafort, and Michael Flynn all learned that the hard way since Trump has never once gave pardons to them despite them taking the fall for his scandals. He may sound like some tough guy but I've seen how he has caved to North Korea and now showers Kim Jong-Un with praises even as Kim thumbs his nose towards the US again and again. And that's going into Vladimir Putin. Trump may talk big, but he's the same man who would quit, declare bankruptcy and leave a mess behind. That's why Turkey was able to attack the Kurds without hesitation despite the US's bipartisan support for the Kurds. They knew that Trump was weak despite his rants. A paper tiger who would destroy himself first. The only people who are afraid of Trump are the people under his management, namely the GOP itself.

Consider that Trump called Mitch McConnell proclaiming that if any Republican shows signs of "disloyalty," he'll attack them on Twitter. This is a sign that the Republicans are only loyal to Trump out of fear, which is why I doubt the notion that the Senate GOP would not convict Trump. It's the unity of ideology and trust that protects a president from being ousted by his own party. But fear always leads to disunity, especially when there's a way out for the Republicans to escape fear. If the GOP Senate believe it is better for them to dump Trump, they would. And to save face, they would force Trump to resign and not let them be forced to vote like in the Nixon era.

I do not see a Civil War beyond civil unrests in a couple of areas. Trump will scream and rant about "coups" and "betrayals" left and right but based on his previous actions, he will cut his losses and plea for a deal that doesn't land him in prison.

"Oh, I dunno. This sorta looks like a coup."

In addition to what you say, the whole thing is being handled like it's taking place in some authoritarian dictatorship (no surprise since that's what "liberals" are all about).

"You have been denounced and will be shot in the morning after your trial" comes to mind.

The "whistle blower" won't even show up on Capitol Hill to testify. Hearings are being held in secret. Trump cannot present his own witnesses.

I put "whistleblower" in quotes because based on what I know about related laws (I have had some training), I don't see where this person meets the definition. In fact, I understand that the form was changed two weeks prior to the complaint to facilitate that person's ability to maybe sort of conform to the requirements.

Is there even a real live person behind the report other than Schiff? Seriously. Schiff could have heard some rumors and then wrote up the whole thing himself.

There is no quid pro quo in the transcript of the conversation in question and the Ukrainian President said there wasn't any.

So what the heck is going on here if not a coup?

The democrats have lost their minds. There is no advantage to what they are doing. They can't win this.

I was talking to a friend, about my age, who stopped this morning to help me out with something on the farm this morning. He has two sons in the military. He's pissed off over this. I mean really hot under the collar. He tells me that his sons are pissed off. That's the vibe I'm getting all over where I live. I saw the Trump rally last night. Full house and enthusiasm from the crowd higher than ever.

Democrats/liberals should beware.

"Trump has committed enough open crimes and corrupt bargains that could impeach dozens of normal presidents. The Ukraine Calls were just the easiest to prove and they were collaborated by other sources, including a second whistleblower and Trump's own damning summarized release of the call transcript."

I didn't find the transcript damning. It wasn't a summarized release, by the way. It was the actual transcript made from notes taken at the time by the intelligence officer(s) who listened in on the call. It's the only transcript there is.

If the transcript is damning, why did Schiff feel the need to invent a phony one? Actually, the transcript shows no indication of "pressure" or of a quid pro quo; the conversation was completely friendly. And we now know that Ukraine had initiated its investigation four months before the call.

As for Trump's many "open crimes," I don't know of them. Given how anxious the Democrats are to impeach him, something they've been talking about since before his inauguration, I would think they'd seize on any "open crimes," rather than trying to hinge impeachment on a phone call that doesn't appear to be illegal.

I think Trump's real crime is that he won the election and deprived the left of their chance to "fundamentally transform" the US, at least for the moment.

That's not to say I'm a Trump superfan. I didn't vote for him (or for Hillary), and I was convinced he would lose the election. I predicted as much in this blog and had to eat crow afterward. I have grave reservations about his improvisational style (the whole Greenland episode was bizarre) and his combative tactics, especially on Twitter. But I do think he's been largely successful in stimulating the economy and avoiding new wars. Jobs and peace aren't the worst legacy a POTUS can have.

I'm also interested in fairness, and I think the ongoing attempts to undo an election by legalistic maneuvers are unfair. People say impeachment is a Constitutional option, but that doesn't mean it can't be abused. It's clear that in this case, impeachment is being used for purely partisan ends, as an overt power play. That was not the intent of the framers. And the precedents set by the last two impeachment proceedings are not being followed. This ought to concern anyone who cares for the integrity of our institutions. What's to stop a Republican congress from impeaching a Democratic president purely because of policy differences? If impeachment becomes a purely political tool, every administration will be subject to it.

Though it's a little off-topic, I think the fundamental problem is that the executive branch has become too strong, while the legislative branch has become too weak. The balance of powers has been disrupted. Presidents of both parties rely on executive orders rather than working with Congress. Congress, no longer able to influence policy, relies on impeachment to rein in the executive.

The system is somewhat broken. I don't know if it can be fixed. A remedy would be to legally constrain the executive from carrying out policy via executive orders, and to make the regulatory bureaucracy more responsive to Congress. In other words, force the president to cooperate with Congress in order to get anything done. But I don't see either party pushing for this. Both parties are drunk on the idea that they can alter policy with the stroke of a pen. This is a very bad development, and it bodes ill for democracy. Trump didn't start it, but he is continuing it. A President Warren or a President Harris would only accelerate the trend.

I'm not optimistic about our political future.

@Micheal Prescott

As his former fixer Michael Cohen once said:

"Mr. Trump did not directly tell me to lie to Congress. That’s not how he operates.
In conversations we had during the campaign, at the same time I was actively negotiating in Russia for him, he would look me in the eye and tell me there’s no business in Russia and then go out and lie to the American people by saying the same thing. In his way, he was telling me to lie."

Trump's call to President Zelenskyy is full of sweet-talking at first, saying that nobody helps Ukraine better than the US (notice how he insults other European countries in the process), then following up by asking Zelenskyy to do a favor. A favor to dig up dirt against Biden, who happens to be one of the presidential candidates running against Trump. He also asked Zelenskyy to call up with Attorney General Barr and Rudy Giuliani, Trump's personal lawyer who is now in a heap of trouble with the authorities. Regardless of what you think about Biden, this is a Watergate scandal we are dealing with, and it's the reason why the impeachment process has sped up.

"Given how anxious the Democrats are to impeach him, something they've been talking about since before his inauguration, I would think they'd seize on any "open crimes," rather than trying to hinge impeachment on a phone call that doesn't appear to be illegal."

And ignoring the Ukraine calls for a second, we also have Trump obstructing justice during the Mueller investigation, Trump refusing to release his taxes returns after promising to do so during the 2016 campaign, Trump using Cohen to bribe Stormy Daniel to speak up of his sex scandal during the campaign, many foreign leaders and officials going to Trump's properties while Trump himself has not divested from his own business (thus violating the emolument clauses), and a nasty habit of lying on a daily basis. And that's just to the tip. Given that President Bill Clinton was impeached for lying under oath about his sex scandal, there was plenty to choose from.

The only reason the House Democrats did not take in these opportunities before was because House Speaker Pelosi did not feel they were enough to persuade the Senate Republicans (remember, impeachment doesn't mean conviction). Why waste on useless impeachment acts when you can just win the 2020 election like they did in 2008? That's why a lot of House Democrats were frustrated with Nancy for months. The only exception would be a scandal so terrible and so easy to understand that nobody, not even the GOP, could defend it. And with the polls in Fox News stating that 51% of Americans want Trump impeached AND removed in light of the Ukraine scandal, we may be seeing that being played out already.

"That's not to say I'm a Trump superfan. I didn't vote for him (or for Hillary), and I was convinced he would lose the election. I predicted as much in this blog and had to eat crow afterward. I have grave reservations about his improvisational style (the whole Greenland episode was bizarre) and his combative tactics, especially on Twitter. But I do think he's been largely successful in stimulating the economy and avoiding new wars. Jobs and peace aren't the worst legacy a POTUS can have.

And President Nixon was the man who opened talks with China, created the EPA, and passed the modern Endangered Species Act. But his legacy was tainted by the Watergate Scandal, which is what he now remembered for. It is quite telling that Trump's approval rating has never gone above 50% despite having a good economy and not sending people into war.

Back to the whole topic, I do not believe that Trump could create a civil war or even successfully hold out in the White House if he's ousted. He lost that advantage the moment he started sweet talking with Kim Jon-Un after his whole "Fire and Fury" declarations, giving Kim everything he wanted while North Korea gives nothing in return. That's how Trump operated, it's why he hasn't gone to war. For all of his tough talk, when people call out his bluff, again and again, he'll back down or pretend it hasn't happened. Instead, he'll try to cut a deal to save face like he did with his several bankruptcies during his days as a businessman.

He's like James Randi in some ways. Always boasting of how smarter he is compared to everybody including scientists, how he alone will save society from "the enemy" because of "his self-made skills," how he'll often resort to insults and humiliations of his opponents to make himself a crowd-pleaser, and how he'll back down or pretend he didn't say that when people actually call out his bluff.

You are missing the point entirely.

First all politicians are corrupt to some extent. So are all businessmen. So is everyone else; including myself and you. I could care less about Trump the man or whatever he did with regards to Stormy Daniels or any other of the BS you bring up or could bring bring up. We elected policy positions, not a saint.

So we have a bunch of corrupt people playing holier than thou and trying to get Trump out of office so they can enjoy their own form of corruption and fundamentally change the country in the process.

I like Trump's policy and positions. They are working and they are what we need. I like the original ideals of America. I think Trump's policies and positions more in line with the original ideals by a long shot than the Democrats. I - and many like me -will literally go to war with people like you because I don't like what you want to do to this country's ideals (AKA the Constitution). I don't like that you're out to get me (a white male). I don't like that you're against the 1A and 2A. I don't like socialism because it is stupid in concept and is proven to fail and cause misery. I happen to think America is uniquely great country and don't want to merge into some global blob controlled by fascist elites.

Trump is symptom and maybe the trigger, not a cause. We tried to protect our way of life by electing him and you people are trying to undo our vote. You leave us with no choice.

Don't fool yourself. At the end of the day, this is not about Trump. It's about you and yours and and me and mine.

Is that clear enough?

Whenever the subject of politics comes up, I find myself thinking of what psychics and mediums say about "raising their vibrations." No one has ever clearly defined these "vibrations," but sensitives seem to agree that they exist in a continuum from low to high, and that higher is better.

I think politics is a very low-vibration business. Focusing on it too much probably lowers our vibrations and makes us worse people. Politics tends to attract low-vibration individuals who are ego-driven and unprincipled (this includes not only candidates but also consultants, pundits, lobbyists, etc.). Much of political campaigning consists of appeals to fear, envy, resentment, greed, and stupidity. News coverage of politics aims to elicit shock and outrage. And righteous outrage is addictive. People become fixated on the little jolt of adrenaline that comes from feeling they are right and the other side is wrong.

So the answer is to ignore politics, right? Well, no. Current affairs do matter, and you don't want to be taken by surprise by new laws or new policies.

It's hard to find the right balancing point between being aware of political developments and becoming obsessed with them. I have no solution to offer, except to recommend taking time off from the news every so often and watching a movie, working on a hobby, or going for a walk.

Do not preemptively judge me on my political positions. I was honestly sick of politics by 2014 and wanted to go on my own personal life. If it weren't for Trump, I would not be in the business of politics.

Trump's bullying stance, corrupt behavior, lack of loyalty to his own men, gross incompetence and tendency to bring out the worst of people is detrimental to the USA. From a conservative standpoint, he is the worst thing that has ever happened to the GOP. Years of conservative policies and achievements will be boiled down into a single boogeyman that new generations will loathe and hate. It will be like JFK with the Cuban Americans. His botched Bay of Pigs Invasion alienated the entire generation of Cuban Americans from the Democratic Party. And Trump's incompetence and corrupt behavior is alienating the new generation of Americans.

And honestly, violence will not solve anyone's problem. The first rule of war is that anything that you use, the other side can and will use it against you. We've seen this with the Soviet Union developing the atomic bomb after learning that the US was developing one in 1945. We've seen China launch retaliatory tariffs against the US after Trump foolishly launched tariffs at them. Kris was right about how a Civil War will go. Namely, not well for Trump supporters. It didn't end well for the Confederacy.

And honestly, what would violence accomplish? It intensify hatred and divide people further. Even if you win, you'll just create a cycle of hatred with no end in sight.

Why do you think many NDE reports often mention about love, kindness and happiness on the other side? Because those stop the cycle of hatred and mend old wounds. It's why many people are here seeking enlightenment regarding our world (myself included).

@Michael Prescott

That I agree. Politics can be too obsessive and usually brings the worst out of people (even from long-time friends). Ironically, I managed to take a nice break from politics just as the Ukrainegate broke out and the impeachment process sped up as a result. Only recently have I've caught up with news.

I think this post is unnecessary in hindsight. I have my doubts that Trump would launch a civil war given his aversion to war with North Korea and Iran (not to mention avoiding draft service in Vietnam). He'll likely fight till the end politically but his past actions points towards caving and trying to make a deal with the legislative branch to avoid further prosecution.

Trying to find possibilities of how a civil war would play out would only increase "low vibrations" here on this blog. And we've already seen how bad it could get.

MP: "I think politics is a very low-vibration business. Focusing on it too much probably lowers our vibrations and makes us worse people."

Huxley wrote similarly in the 1940s.

MP: "I have no solution to offer"

I do. I urge that we replace mass democracy with "mini" or "micro" democracy. I.e., democracies in which officials are elected by grand- jury-sized electorates (of 23), chosen in part by lot and in part by "ballotery," in which names are drawn from a pot containing ballots cast by citizens for their fellow citizens. (Ideally, the larger public would remain unaware of their proceedings.) I've written an 8-page article on this proposal, titled "Demarchy—small, sample electorates electing officials." It's at:

The idea of electorates or legislatures composed of a sample of the citizen body has been getting a lot of attention in political science circles in the past decade. There are hundreds of academic articles on "sortition," as it is technically known—many are on the site, others can be found in Google Scholar. And a recent best-seller in Europe has been Against Elections (intro by Kofi Annan), available on Amazon at

PS: See also, where news and views on sortition are presented. The site's owner is a radical egalitarian and leftist, but he is tolerable, and the contributors are more balanced.

PPS: Here is "A Purge for Legislatures" by H.L. Mencken, which also advocates sortition, in his inimitable style:

If Trump was impeached and removed from office then Pence would become President. Many have speculated that the only reason Pence agreed to the VP spot was this he felt that there was a good chance the impeachment and removal scenario would happen and it would allow him to become president. So far from helping Trump he would be the one to have him arrested. I suspect many Republican leaders would be quietly relieved.

Eric, I love how a man who never served a single day in the armed forces is so ready to wage against your  fellow Americans. That speaks volumes. To be bluntly candid with you many of us in the service have absolutely no respect for people such as yourself. I know I don't. You want a war which others will wage for you. How cowardly. Just like Trump and Vietnam. Or Bush hiding in the National Guard during Vietnam.

As for the armed forces coming to the rescue of Trump I doubt it. Do you think the generals are thrilled with a man who has insulted veterans and serving again and again? Do you think they are thrilled with his decisions toward North Korea, Iran, Kurds and our traditional alliances? I doubt it. I think they would be fine with a President Pence.

In my experience near the end of my time in the military Trump mainly  appealed to lower ranking less educated White male  soldiers and outside of that bubble it was indifference toward the man or out right loathing. I simply do not see enough soldiers to make your next Confederacy. Have you even found your Robert E Lee?

Two million raging Trumpers. Yeah two million raging old folks with their guns. Yeah that would be a challenge for the US military and many far younger leftist with their guns. Snicker Snicker. Aim for the oxygen tanks boys!! I suspect all one would need to do to put down those would be revolutionaries is to threaten to cut off their blood pressure medicine.

However as I keep pointing out those of us on the left are younger and healthier. We can just wait for the right wingers to die of old age. Win by default. Your sides biggest enemy is the grim reaper.

I have known plenty of minorities in my time with the military and my current teaching job has me teaching at a school that is 99% Black and Hispanic. I am the token White guy. In all my time with both I have yet to hear of this planned genocide against Whites. Far from wanting to kill me they became friends with me and I even dated some Black and Hispanic women. Basically I treated them with respect and they returned the favor. How perfectly normal.

Both sides have challenged the first amendment again and again. It's hardly one sided. As for the second amendment the biggest threat to it is it's proponents who think that their ease of access to a gun trumps the basic safety of others. It is too easy for any idiot to get a gun and when that happens you hear about it on the news. I can see why people are disgusted. You will notice Canada who does far stricter screenings on people  who get guns than the US does oddly has far less mass shootings per population than we do. Their gangs are also far less armed. They also have lower rates of murder and suicide. That is just some of the advantages of tightly regulating firearms.

I could go on and on about the reasonable of left wing positions and how right wing attacks on them are based on ignorance and greed ( Such as gee if we have a universal health care system poor people could see doctors and my wait time would might be longer!! Therefore I oppose it). I had planned on staying silent on this one but I finally got sick of Eric's chicken hawk antics.

I have no doubt that Eric will respond by saying what he always says which basically amounts to everyone has to accept his screwball views on society and the Constitution so that he and his can live their lives. If you have to take one on the chin for this to happen well that is just too bad. Him and his matter most after all. It is what the founding father intended ( apparently they are some form of all knowing oracles who made a Constitution which only needed to be amended 17 times since it was written)

You're right,Michael, about politics being being a low vibration endeavor and the need to take a break. It's tough to ignore when it seems like every day the Democrats are at some new effort to tear apart the constitutional fabric of the country.

I don't normally like what Matt Taibbi writes because he is a leftist and I'm not, but he nailed it in this article. He gets right to the heart of the matter and why it's so serious.

I wish that other liberals/progressives/leftists could see what Taibbi does.

No walks for me today as it's a cold rainy dreary day. I'll put on the head phones and keep trying to learn how to play guitar :-)

The lust for power and wealth and the corruption associated with them aren't restricted to any particular political party or organization of any kind -- government, business, financial, military, etc.

Once power (and/or wealth) is attained, media is bent to foster its aims, its retention. What is "PR" if not a form of propaganda?

Empires have been rising and falling for thousands of years and now include the largest of millions of business organizations that seek $$$, not actual physical territory, even as the more traditional empires continue to exist (including those that are more or less invisible to the citizens of their home countries, who focus on domestic politics, not, say, 700-800 military bases all over the planet, "black" budgets and the corruption of the "military industrial complex" that underpins their particular empire).

The pattern (of empires, of the rise and fall of empires) arose in the ancient world and isn't likely to change until the form of individual consciousness empires magnify changes. (This isn't so far fetched; it's happened before. Witness the distinct change in Mesopotamian cities, long ago. Note also how the use of "I" in literature first appeared several thousand years after this change, as development of the specialized, narrowly focused "ego" continued.)

Very often, empires begin to collapse when discord (conflicts in belief) reigns in their home countries. Some suggest this is a nearly inevitable part of the overall pattern.

We live, then, in a world in which the rise and fall of empires still prevails while, conceivably, that pattern is itself coming to an end.

(Note that there has never been an empire that did not eventually fail, collapse, fall, etc., in all of those thousands of years.)

Against this backdrop I'm an independent, often annoyed at the way so very many view their world through a prism of left-right political beliefs, imagining that politicians seemingly aligned with their particular beliefs can do no wrong or, if so, only "slight" wrong -- within acceptable limits -- while also imagining that politicians who are seemingly not aligned with their particular beliefs can do no "right." It's a "good guys" vs. "bad guys" thing; us and them.

Meanwhile, the corruption of wealth and power, the continuance of empire, doesn't cease, no matter what surface issues are debated.

Given all of the above, I still don't care for extreme incompetence in government, whether associated with elected officials or those appointed by them, or career officials in government/military organizations.

Look at the staff hires and department appointments in this present administration.

Note that the chief executive is a failed businessman who, nevertheless, has sufficient resources to cover this up, a man who was impressed by the odious Roy Cohn in his youth.

I'll be happy when the idiot is gone, which he surely will be, sooner or later, one way or another.

It is a coup when an Intelligence official becomes a whistleblower it is a coup. The founding fathers did not foresee the CIA, NSA et all. Truman who started the CIA said it should be dismantled.

Spooks do not give up power if they put someone in he,she, or it will dance to their tune. AS for kumbaya's story. Crime stats do not support it. Nor do they the MYth of Unity of "people of Color" Asians and Euro's should be very, very careful in the hood.
Table 14

Some on the left may be younger and healthier but they are very inexperienced and many of them are irresponsible. (They do have Bernie, Nancy, Joe and Elizabeth though, not exactly Spring Chickens). Successful long-lasting cultures and tribes are run by mature adults not by inexperienced irresponsible children.

The youth have always been sent to fight the battles. It is no different now after all, they are the ones who are physically stronger and more able to endure the perils of battle. If the young leftists think they will outlive the old folks, they probably will, but during their wait time for the old to die they too will be growing older and younger people with different ideas will be following right behind them.

I think it is disrespectful when people, especially white men say that they have dated black women as if they want additional points for doing so, as if they are providing evidence that they are not racists when all along they are probably the most racist people there are. A non-racist doesn’t care if who they date is red, green, black, brown or white. It is not something they need to mention.

I don’t like personal attacks on a blog and that is why I participate in Prescott’s blog. With a few exceptions, most of the people who comment here show restraint when it comes to personal attacks. I hope that can continue. - AOD

Kris, it's my understanding that Eric is a military veteran. In general I'm not in favor of playing the "veteran" card anyway. We don't live in Heinlein's "Starship Troopers," where only vets get to vote.

In a previous thread, I pointed out the problem with waiting for the old folks to die. As people mature, they often change their political views. I was a socialist when I started college. People typically become more conservative when they get a job, kids, a mortgage, etc. The socialists of today may be the neoliberals or even neoconservatives of tomorrow.

AOD wrote, "With a few exceptions, most of the people who comment here show restraint when it comes to personal attacks. I hope that can continue."

Point well taken, and I completely agree.

@ Michael

In all my conversations with Eric he has never once indicated he served. When discussing the military he always indicates he heard it from so and so. If he has any personal experience on the subject he has been strangely silent on it. If he has served he can kindly provide evidence. I am more than willing to provide it myself in email to Michael.

@ Amos

I find your outrage to be very selective. You are outraged that I called out Eric but are oddly silent on his ongoing threats to liberals and democrats.

I call out chicken hawks period. I don't care if they are left wing, right wing etc. If you are wanting to wage war and when you were of age you never served ( you know like Dick Cheney) then I consider you to be contemptible.

Michael. Not everyone shifts to conservative as they get older. Even if they do shift some they still are more liberal than generations before them. But furthermore you are assuming left wing problems are just left wing problems. They are national problems. Our healthcare system simply is too inefficient. It is way too easy to get a gun in the US. We need better environmental policies.

Younger people want to address these things. When they become middle aged they are not suddenly going to be okay with them. They will simply start to fix them. The right doesn't want to fix them because they either benefit from the problems or they simply aren't affected.

Like I say simply wait for this generation of right wingers to die then get to work saving this country from the damage they caused.

Yes, MP. And I was a BLM Ranger for three afterwards and carried a gun and everything. Last weekend I put up a few hundred bails of hay, lugged a number of 100 LBS grain sacks into the barn and then, being hot and sweaty, went down to the university swimming pool and swam laps for an hour instead of going to the gym and lifting. I only took a hit off my oxygen tank once all day, although I did double dose my Geritol in the morning before all of that ;-)

Both of my children went into the military. My father served in WW2.

I used to vote straight Democrat. However, to Amos' point, I now vote straight Republican. Something about earning a Masters in economics and working for a Fortune 100 company that opens your eyes to the true complexity of our economy, way of life and the issues we face. I still work. Despite my oxygen tank dependency, I still get up every day and work my 9 to 5 and then do chores on my thoroughbred farm.

I'm just playing the Devil's advocate here. Also, I think it is a bad idea to misunderstand one's opponents, both in motivation and in capability. They teach you things like that when you're an officer. Enlisted is more about learning a job and following orders. Not as much thinking involved.

As far as the mighty US military versus ragtag insurgents goes, how did all of that might do against insurgents in S. VN? How about in Afghanistan or Iraq?

BTW, I don't think he'd mimd me mentioning it, but our mutual friend and paranormal researcher, Michael Tymn was a USMC officer. I don't think he has ever used that fact to "win" a debate. It just isn't relevant. Service is service, not a trump card as a superior citizen to played against others.

For a while, Fox News was big on trotting out former navy SEALs and such to discuss economics, child rearing, all kinds of topics. I'd cringe when they did that. I have the highest respect for SEALs as commandos, but as economists and sociologists? Not a bit.

Of course, we were talking war here, but something about military folks, active or veteran; they all have opinions just like everyone else and those opinions vary greatly. Your milage may vary.

And, getting back to the topic, according to the Marine Corps times something like 2/3 of Marines love Trump (this is from memory, may have been the Marine Corps Gazette). So that something like 120,000 Marines. The there's all of the former Marines from the past 20 years. They're older, per Amos' point. So we can easily get to something close to a million well trained Trump supporters who are not yet hooked up to oxygen tanks.

I recall seeing photos of Navy SEALs on some training exercise with Trump bumper stickers on their hummers. I think they got in trouble for that, but a few hundred well trained commandos can do an extraordinary amount of disabling damage to the enemy in the opening days of a war.

I'm sure even the Army would offer a few Patriots (sarcasm alert).

Then you have all of the hillbilly/backwoods militias, farmers, etc. They may or may not have a military background, but they do train somewhat and know how to shoot and survive off the countryside.

Then there are all of the hackers that would join, if for no other reason, than out of a sense of excitement and anarchy. Cyber aspects of war are important.

There are all of the police "oath takers" who are about sick and tired of liberal mayors and Antifa, etc

Just pointing out that my 2 million figure is not as absurd as some want it to be.

Interesting and highly relevant opinion piece by Matt Taibbi, a liberal who is no friend of Trump, but who also is alarmed by the politicization of the intelligence community:

//We are speeding toward a situation when someone in one of these camps refuses to obey a major decree, arrest order, or court decision, at which point Americans will get to experience the joys of their political futures being decided by phone calls to generals and police chiefs.

My discomfort in the last few years, first with Russiagate and now with Ukrainegate and impeachment, stems from the belief that the people pushing hardest for Trump’s early removal are more dangerous than Trump. Many Americans don’t see this because they’re not used to waking up in a country where you’re not sure who the president will be by nightfall. They don’t understand that this predicament is worse than having a bad president....

The leak of the January, 2017 “meeting” between the four chiefs and Trump – which without question damaged both the presidency and America’s standing abroad – was an unprecedented act of insubordination.

It was also a bold new foray into domestic politics by intelligence agencies that in recent decades began asserting all sorts of frightening new authority. They were kidnapping foreigners, assassinating by drone, conducting paramilitary operations without congressional notice, building an international archipelago of secret prisons, and engaging in mass warrantless surveillance of Americans. We found out in a court case just last week how extensive the illegal domestic surveillance has been, with the FBI engaging in tens of thousands of warrantless searches involving American emails and phone numbers under the guise of combating foreign subversion.//

The piece, by the way, is titled "We're in a Permanent Coup."

I was in the 5th Army Combat Engineers for two years. Had a cushy job as a finance clerk. - AOD

Kris submitted another comment, but I’m sorry to say I’m not going to post it. I don’t like silencing anyone who’s addressing the topic, but if comment moderation is to serve any purpose, I have to exercise some judgment occasionally. In this case, I think the argument between Kris and Eric is becoming too personal. To be as fair as possible, I also won’t post any more comments (on this thread) from Eric that make reference to Kris.

I realize this has the effect of giving Eric the last word, but someone has to go last. Anyway, I think the substance of both their positions is clear.

I’m happy to have both Kris and Eric continue to comment on this thread and others, but I’d rather have them address me (or readers in general) than each other.

Sorry to step in like this, but the dispute threatens to get out of hand. We don’t need a civil war right here on this blog!

@Michael Prescott

Honestly, if you worried about causing civil war here, this blog post should not have been posted from the beginning. Trump, as I've stated before, brings the worst out of people and unfortunately, when things get passionate, nobody wants the other side to get the "last word."

After all, isn't this just a follow up to an unlikely event that will not end well for both sides? Despite what some may believe, war is never easy and lose more than you win. I recall stories of how soldiers went to World War I thinking that it would be a quick and easy war. Young proud men who never realized the horrors they are about to face until it was too late. In what was supposed to be a quick curb stomp battle turned into a quagmire that lasted for years, with no end in sight. The only reason the Allies won is because the Central Powers exhausted nearly all of their resources and men first. And even then, the victors were so crippled by WWI that they were not able to fully recover when Hitler made his move.

War is attrition, and the first one to blink is the loser. And judging by the fact Trump caved to Kim Jong-Un, Putin, Erdoğan, and possibly Xi Jinping (if it turns out that Trump's "better" trade deal is another pack of lies), I do not see Trump stubbornly holding on to the White House for long. If the GOP Senate convicts him in the impeachment trial like in the hypothetical situation, it spells the end for Trump's influence. If they're not afraid of him and his followers, neither would the rest of the country.

I'm curious whether people who think Trump is becoming the victim of a coup think that Bill Clinton was similarly a victim. (Note, I was not and am not a Bill Clinton fan and wanted him to be impeached at the time. In retrospect, I think he should have resigned.)

A lot of Republicans, Lindsey Graham in particular, said a lot of high-minded things back then. Here's an interesting article on Graham's consistency:

Looking back, I think the worst thing Bill Clinton did (that was proven) was to be a lying scumbag and disgrace himself and his office.

Similarly, I think the worst thing that Trump has done is continuously and relentlessly behave without decorum as president. Regardless of whether has committed specific "crimes," this behavior has had an extremely negative effect on the country in multiple domains (it fans the flames of division among the American people, it makes us look like idiots to the world, etc.).

Trump fans love having such a brute in the White House and celebrate his vulgarity. They love the discomfort that this causes those they perceive to be their opponents or enemies. This attitude, frankly, is wrong and destructive. There really is no excuse for it. And Trump loves that people have this reaction because his electoral approach is based on dividing the country and feeding off of what I call "oppositional energy."

Bill Clinton should have resigned for more or less the same thing: he was caught being a scumbag in office (i.e., lacking decorum, defying the norms of the presidency), and then his continued presence in the White House divided people with respect to behavior that was wrong.

I read the Matt Taibbi piece. I think he has a point. I wouldn't call it a "coup" per se, however.

Perhaps some of you have had the following type of experience. A new manager enters your company, perhaps becomes your boss. And this person is not a leader. Doesn't gain the respect of subordinates, perhaps does things that make such respect impossible. And so people resist. Sometimes it's just little stuff, but sometimes it turns into outright insubordination or a campaign to get the new boss transferred or even fired. All this comes down to basic human psychology and is as ordinary as possible.

(I had such a boss in the early 2000s, and it still makes me mad to think about it. He couldn't manage and was eventually kicked sideways in the company with few to no people to manage.)

If you choose a person who behaves as Trump does--not presidential at all, but in fact the opposite--it is the least surprising thing in the world that you will have factions in government that will resist. That's the price you pay for putting such a person in office. Next time, vote for an appropriate leader, whether Liberal or Conservative.

Now does that make it *right* for resistance to occur within government agencies? That depends, and here is where it gets murky. If actual laws and regulations are being flouted, then one may have a duty to resist. If one simply doesn't like the leader, then one should not actually resist. As to what is actually happening, I don't really know. And I don't want to make it an argument about that, since I think the argument I have given above concerning Trump's demeanor and behavior is sufficient to condemn the man, to reject him entirely as president.

Of course, people are free to argue back that Trump is wonderful, his behavior is this or that and not worthy of condemnation, and so on. On that, we simply disagree. I think he is *prima facie* atrocious and unacceptable, and if you think that's OK, then there is probably nothing more I can say to convince you otherwise.

As to whether people become more Conservative as they age and/or gain experience, it would be interesting to see some actual research on that.

Another question to ask is whether, if such a phenomenon is actually occurring, is it particular to the American experience. Senior in the US receive social security and medicare and in many cases don't have to worry about things that younger people do. I think it's certainly easier to be Conservative in such a situation.

I represent the opposite trend. I grew up in a Republican household and considered myself Conservative until my early 30s. I voted straight ticket Republican in the 1994 midterms. I even split my ticket between Obama and Mitch Daniels for governor in Indiana in 2008.

But now, no way. I think with Trump the Republicans have completely abandoned Conservative principles, so I don't even know what Conservatism is supposed to be these days. I'm not a perfect Liberal, but I'm close enough. I care about people and think we can do a better job of taking care of them and having economic equality without resorting to Soviet-style communism, traditionally defined socialism, or any other such bogeyman.

Just another observation while I'm at it...

I hate hypocrisy and special pleading. When it comes to Trump, that's all his followers do. It must be done, since there is no excusing what he does according to the principles they say they hold.

Obama was nitpicked by the right for every tiny thing he ever did. He wore a tan suit once and saluted funny once. He put his feet up on a desk, etc. He was presidential, however, so to come up with the requisite fuel for the hate fire, birtherism was invented. (That is not to say that Conservatives did not have some legitimate quarrels with Obama's policies, but they could not reasonably impugn his demeanor and behavior.)

Now, however, Trump is forgiven every day for things that they would have excoriated Obama for (and rightly so, had he done them).

I find the enthusiasm that evangelicals have for Trump to be especially grating. If Trump is anything, he ain't Christian. Nor does anything about his lifestyle and history match up with the principles they claim to hold. Again, these are the people that constantly doubted the faith of Democrats and criticized every little thing about them.

Now they embrace a man who literally had an affair with a porn star and paid her off to keep her quiet. C'mon guys. This is the apotheosis of special pleading. What these people believe in is not actually God, and what they are practicing is not anything resembling a spiritual path. It is purely a social and political agenda.

And yet another, if I may...

I think a new logical fallacy has been invented by Trump and his supporters that I will call "Trumpian exoneration." It goes like this: "If Person X is not guilty of part of that of which s/he accused, then Person X is not guilty of anything of which they are accused."

Example. The Mueller Report said it did not find sufficient evidence of Trump colluding with the Russians, though the Report (and Mueller himself) more or less indicated that Trump was guilty of obstruction of justice. Trump, Republicans, and Trump supporters then claim complete exoneration.

And had such a report been issued about Bill Clinton or Obama, then the right would have been satisfied that all was well, correct? Case closed, right?

Hahaha. We all know the answer to that. The right would have excoriated the politician in question and demanded resignation and/or impeachment. And they would have been correct to do so. (At least resignation. You can argue that Trump didn't commit a crime with respect to the findings of the Mueller report, but I don't think you can argue that it was presidential, moral, competent, etc.)

It is this daily, constant hypocrisy and special pleading that I find both sad and disturbing.

To relate it to what we more typically discuss on this blog, we clearly have two tribes in America that view the basic reality of what is going on with Trump in a diametrically opposed way. Both cannot be right. One side must have a very distorted and incorrect view of all this... stuff. (Note that that reality of this phenomenon is apparent regardless of which side you are on with respect to Trump.)

Granted that, then it's quite easy to see how Skeptics can summarily dismiss all the evidence for the paranormal and engage in a campaign of deceit and mockery with respect to paranormal claims and those who make them. In short, it's a sociological phenomenon: there are people who don't want to recognize the paranormal as real, they belong to a cohesive tribe, and they work in concert to ensure that as few people are convince as possible.

In this way, it's possible to suppress the truth very effectively and for a very long period of time. People can believe what they want and act as though what they believe is true, even in the face of very concrete facts that contradict their belief system.

Is it necessary for a President of the United States of America to be ‘decorous’ and ‘presidential? Are those important criteria on which to elect a nominee and more important perhaps, is the absence of such decorum enough reason to impeach a president? Can a president’s behavioral style rise to the level of “high crimes and misdemeanors"? And aren’t those “presidential” and decorous behaviors highly subjective (which is precisely why there are at least two factions regarding Trump’s suitability to be President of the United States of America).

One could easily say that engaging in fellatio with a young intern in the White House oval office cloakroom and---understandably---lying about is not very presidential. I think few people would disagree with that but exactly what is unacceptable about Donald Trump’s brusque and arguably provoking and engaging behavioral style since he has been president?

Trump is not the stereotypical President of the United States, an image protected over the years by news media and portrayed in the movies. He is not Lincolnesque nor a kindly white-haired jolly grandfather president participating in an Easter egg hunt with little children on the White House lawn. The fantasy image of an American president for many voters is a white male, who doesn’t smoke, doesn’t drink or curse, goes to church (preferably) every Sunday, is not a serial polygamist or fornicator, is married to a plump white-haired rather bland lady who has borne him several bland children, dresses conservatively, always smiles and knows great detail about every country on the globe as well as world history going back at least two or three thousand years, is an experienced administrative executive and should not have experienced financial losses prior to becoming president.

Now how realistic is this expectation? - AOD

I think it is good to have Trumpers say their actual views. They cannot accuse people like me of making it up now can they?

They consider it patriotic to wage war against their fellow Americans. The last time we had such um patriotic Americans we called them the Confederates. Oddly enough much like many Trumpers they went around saying their way of life was endangered and they simply had no choice but to do what they did.

The Confederates fought to preserve a system of slavery, because they felt it benefited them. Our would be army of Trumpers ( have you found your Lee yet?) are prepared to fight for medical coverage only for the well off, guns for everyone (especially the mentally ill, but then again I can see why Trumpers would support that come to think of it) foreign interference in our elections and betraying our allies. Oh locking children in cages too for the crimes of their parents. ( strangely enough the self proclaimed followers of Jesus really liked that one)

We certainly live in interesting time and the right has taught people like me many lessons on patriotism.

I used to think patriotism was caring about all your fellow citizens but know I have learned that you only care for your group and you prepare to wage war on your fellow Americans to preserve your way of life.

I used to think it was patriotic to oppose foreign meddling in our elections but the right has taught me that foreign meddling is a good thing, provided your opponent is a democrat.

Patriotism is also fighting to prevent your fellow citizens from getting healthcare and opposing laws which reduce homicide rates.

The religious right has also provided many enlightening spiritual lessons for us all.

Basically if you're a democrat and you commit any sin you have got to go; but if a republican sins they are automatically forgiven.

God might not be a respecter of men but they certainly are!!

Being gay is completely immoral, says the organization with a lot of divorcees and endless child sex scandals.

Jesus was apparently a well armed businessman with his band of entrepreneurs who taught social prosperity and wealth to get to Heaven.

What fascinating spiritual lessons from the right.

Oh I also learned it is a coup to follow the Constitution on how to impeach and remove a president. Apparently if the right votes for someone he gets to commit all the crimes he wants. Impeachment is just for democrat presidents.

I was going to compare Trumpism to the Bund Party but at least the Bund Party went away when Germany declared war on the US. Trumpers knows hostile powers helped them win and frankly they don't care. Like true real patriots.

Posted by: Kris | October 13, 2019 at 12:25 AM


Yes, because the President is supposed to be a role model for future generations, especially children. They are the representation of the United States. For many outside the US, all they know about the US was the President and little else. How the President behaves to them is what will color their perception of the US for generations to come. It may be difficult or unrealistic to achieve such high standards, but that is why the presidency is meant for the top qualifying candidate. Because a terrible one can destroy all credibility that the US had worked hard for. One has to look at Germany after 1945.

Remember, the US President is not meant to be absolute king. The power to make laws and determine declarations of wars belongs to Congress, a group of lawmakers who have to compromise and do the "sausage-making" behind the scenes. The power to determine what is right and wrong belongs to the courts. And all branches must serve the public's will. If the public thinks you are bad and must be removed, you will be removed through impeachment, resignation, or voted out.

Trump gets extra ire because he tries to make everything in the US about himself at the expense of the people. He's not simply corrupt and cruel, he actively undermines the legislative branch, judicial branch, the Pentagon and the press to satisfy his own desires. He abandoned the Kurds to Turkey without the Pentagon knowing it, and alienated many Republicans since backing the Kurds was their stance. He threatened to attack his own party if they dare criticize him. He even attacked Fox News when their polls showed 51% of the people want Trump impeached and removed. This is not a leader, this is a tyrant.

Trump had low expectations to begin with (at best, I expected him to be a signing puppet for the GOP) back in 2016. The fact that he's failing those "high" expectations only signifies how unfit he is to lead.

Kris wrote, "They consider it patriotic to wage war against their fellow Americans." If they sincerely believe the elected government has been unlawfully overturned (even if they're mistaken), wouldn't their motives be patriotic?

"Our would be army of Trumpers ... are prepared to fight for medical coverage only for the well off, guns for everyone ... foreign interference in our elections and betraying our allies. Oh locking children in cages too for the crimes of their parents."

Hardly an accurate characterization of conservative positions. It's perfectly possible to have doubts about "Medicare for all," which would raise a host of new problems, costs, and complications. No one wants "guns for everyone"; even the NRA supports background checks etc. "Foreign interference" is debatable, to say the least. "Locking children in cages" has been US policy since the Clinton administration, and it's done for the humane purpose of identifying children who are the victims of human trafficking (approximately 20%). Presidents Clinton, Bush, and Obama enforced the same policy. The alternative is to let traffickers kidnap children, bring them across the border, and sell them into sex slavery. I'm assuming you don't want this.

"Opposing laws which reduce homicide rates." Studies show that states and municipalities with open-carry and other pro-gun policies lower their homicide rates, often dramatically, while places that enforce stringent gun control and gun-free zones are often among the worst in terms of homicides. (See Chicago.) There's also the Second Amendment to the Bill of Rights, which ought to count for something.

"Being gay is completely immoral." In a speech at the UN last month, Trump said, “We stand in solidarity with LGBTQ people who live in countries that punish, jail or execute individuals based upon sexual orientation.” The Log Cabin Republicans, a gay-rights group, praised Trump for “removing gay rights as a wedge issue from the old Republican playbook.” Trump is the first Republican candidate to use the acronym LGBT in his acceptance speech at the convention (referencing the Pulse nightclub shooting, he pledged to protect LGBT people from violence).

Kris also wrote, "Oh I also learned it is a coup to follow the Constitution on how to impeach and remove a president." The question is whether Pelosi & co. are following the Constitution, or more precisely, the precedents set by the Nixon and Clinton impeachment proceedings. The Constitution is vague on the procedure, but the precedents are clear.

In general, I think it's a poor tactic to caricature and misrepresent your opponents' positions. It inhibits understanding and makes reasonable compromise more difficult.

"I'm curious whether people who think Trump is becoming the victim of a coup think that Bill Clinton was similarly a victim. (Note, I was not and am not a Bill Clinton fan and wanted him to be impeached at the time. In retrospect, I think he should have resigned.)"

Matt, I voted for Bill Clinton twice. I contended then, and still do, that his impeachment was wrong and stupid. The Republicans then, as the Democrats now, hated a man who was elected and were looking for a crime to fit a punishment they had already decided to impose on him.

Two wrongs don't make a right.

I think it is "brutish" to fine citizens exorbitantly for using the phrase the Supreme Court uses and that is factually and obviously true; "Illegal Alien". I think it is brutish to make people say the lie that there are 87 genders on pain of fines or jail time. I think it's brutish to fight a never ending war in the MENA for other people that end up hating us anyhow. I think it's brutish to drive down low skill wages by opening the borders. I could go on, but you're smart and should get the point - substance over style is what I'm hearing from anti-trumpets.

@Michael Prescott

Trump is as trustworthy as a honest liar. He'll claim he'll protect the LGBT people but his actions suggest the opposite. He'll throw you under the bus if it means saving and enriching himself, like he did to his own people. First he'll claim that folks like Manafort and Cohen are the best people he had, then he'll say that he never heard them before or that their roles are minimal in his campaigns when they get into trouble.

To believe in Trump on protecting LGBT is to believe Randi's claim that his Million Dollar Challenge is fair and not some publicity scam to humiliate people.

This is a tangent from the Civil War question, but I'd like to address it anyhow - the Kurds.

I know a lot of the history of that situation, but in short, the Kurds could and should remain citizens of Syria. It's that simple. They don't get to have their own country anymore than an ethnic group in the US would get to break away and form a country on American soil (or the French Canadians getting their own piece of Canada to make a separate country). So maybe this is related to civil war after all. If Kurds gets to break away from the govt of the land they live in, why wouldn't that principle apply to anyone anywhere?

The problem is that many Americans are conditioned to believe that Assad is an evil dictator with whom the Kurds shouldn't ally. That couldn't be farthest from the truth. That propaganda started when the "neocons" attempted to extent their color revolutions into Syria by siding with "rebels" who are actually Al Qaeda and ISIS (al of them). Assad went after the "rebels" and the neocons said he was killing "freedom fighters". I don't know any Christians in Syria, I am in contact with some, that think the rebels are freedom fighters.

In reality, the Assad govt and the previous ones going back more than 100 years have been very kind to a diverse ethnic/religious population. I have [now somewhat distant] Christian relatives that found protection there from the genocidal activities of the Turks and still live there. Christian communities, Shia, Alawis, Druzes all love Assad and fight for the Syrian govt because it's an oasis of protection from Sunni Muslims who would, sooner or later, kill them. I say this as an Armenian (50%) who grew up with survivors and learned the history. My paternal ancestors lived on the border of what is now Turkey and Syria. They had to deal with being victims of the Kurds' raids and murders as well as the Turks savagery and persecution of Christians.

The Kurds were once very bad people who raided and killed for a living. The lived under tribal chiefs who fought each other too. They would do best to live as an ethnic group that is part of the civilized and largely westernized Syrian state. Trump made the right move by forcing the Kurds to align with Assad and to get American troops the hell out of harm's way in a never ending saga of death and tribal war that has been raging off and on since before there was an America.

The US govt and media is snowing you on this topic, like so many others. I very much appreciate Trump learning and assessing and doing what he promised to do; disentangle us from being the world's police force.

Mike I noticed you jumped back and forth between conservative positions and Trumper positions in your response to me.

Like I said in email to you I have no doubt there are some conservatives out there who genuinely want to solve the problems this nation is facing. However they are incredibly rare creatures and they certainly have no power in the Republican Party.

Let's go through and look at your comments to me.

MP "If they sincerely believe the elected government has been unlawfully overturned (even if they're mistaken), wouldn't their motives be patriotic?"

KK How does this "sincere " mistake happen?? Does the House have the right to impeach a President. Yes it does. Does the Senate have the right to convict one? Yes it does.

If those two steps happen what is their complaint besides they do not like the outcome? We didn't like the outcome of the archaic electoral college in 2016, Trumpers certainly have no right to refuse to accept the outcome of an impeachment and removal from office for Trump.

Your argument is akin to saying the Confederates were mistaken and truly believed Lincoln lost the election.

How believable is it?

Fine have doubts about Medicare for all. Now can I get the Trumper solution. Not only do they not have one they tried to repeal the Affordable Care Act.

I said locking children in cages, for the sins of their parents. I did not just say locking children in cages. It was the Trump Administration which started the systematic policy of separating children from their parents.

Other administrations simply sent the families back.

Foreign interference is a well established fact that all US intelligence agencies agreed upon.

MP " even the NRA supports background checks etc."

That is why they oppose mental health checks and universal background checks.

I said it was the religious right saying this "Being gay is completely immoral."

Have they stopped?

I fail to see the Constitutional issue. The House is allowed to impeach presidents. Therefore they are allowed to investigate them. Their is no rule saying they have to follow precedent whatsoever.

Compare our homicides rate with the rest of the first world Michael and get back to me on conservative solutions.

When the Republican Party becomes responsible people like me will support it. Until then I will fight it tooth and nail to make sure it harms the US as little as possible.

AOD wrote,

||Is it necessary for a President of the United States of America to be ‘decorous’ and ‘presidential?||

Yes. It's an important part of preserving the valuable norms and order of the country.

||Are those important criteria on which to elect a nominee and more important perhaps, is the absence of such decorum enough reason to impeach a president? Can a president’s behavioral style rise to the level of “high crimes and misdemeanors"?||

The above-linked article about Lindsey Graham made a good point: "Bloch said Graham was right. She explained that legal scholars and practitioners of the law generally agree with the interpretation that the framers of the Constitution allowed for impeachment for offenses that wouldn’t be formally listed in criminal statute. For instance, she said, if an elected official sat around all and did literally nothing, it could qualify as impeachable."

What if a president explicitly abandoned his office but refused to resign? We might easily agree that impeachment would be the only thing to do, barring the case of mental illness, in which case perhaps the 25th amendment would be applied.

Very well, what if the president by any reasonable standard abandoned his office but *said* that he hadn't and that any attempts to remove him would be a "coup," etc.? And what if the two parties were divided on what was actually going on. It would be a tricky situation.

Trump isn't just a jerk. He acts like a person with a severe mental illness and/or dementia. He is out of control. I think the 25th amendment could very reasonably be applied right now, but the way the amendment is written, unless the president is completely incapacitated, trying to sideline him will be a very dicey affair.

Decorum is a matter of degree. What if a president was walking around naked in the Rose Garden? What if he was randomly calling up world leaders on the phone and cussing them out? These would separately not be "impeachable offenses" but would add up to a pattern of behavior that, at some point, would be seen as intolerable by essentially everyone regardless of political affiliation. My opinion is that that that point was reached a long time ago, but where each person sets that bar with be a matter of opinion and personal judgment.

I myself have not said that Trump deserves to be impeached. My actual opinion is that he is so erratic, so out of control, that his own party should force him to resign. Even if he has not committed any actual crimes, he is a danger to the country.

||One could easily say that engaging in fellatio with a young intern in the White House oval office cloakroom and---understandably---lying about is not very presidential.||

I totally agree. Clinton should have been forced to resign by the Democrats. I think if the same thing happened now in 2019, with the greater understanding of and opposition to sexual harassment, he would be. (I also think he probably raped Juanita Brodderick and that accusation made today would prevent him from becoming president in the first place.)

||I think few people would disagree with that but exactly what is unacceptable about Donald Trump’s brusque and arguably provoking and engaging behavioral style since he has been president?||

If you don't agree with me, then nothing I can say can convince you otherwise.

||Trump is not the stereotypical President of the United States, an image protected over the years by news media and portrayed in the movies.||

Yes, yes, I've heard this argument and I reject it. Trump is joking, Trump is different from the rest--in a good way! Again, if you think what he does is good and acceptable, then I have no further argument to make.

||Now how realistic is this expectation?||

Any president in my lifetime has at least been presidential and shown respect for himself and the office. I think George W. Bush is and idiot and a war criminal, but even he was presidential.

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