My last post discussed the abuses of the Moeller investigation. Since then we learned that one of its victims was the target of an FBI plot to destroy him.
Michael Flynn was named National Security Advisor in November 2016. In December he had a telephone conversation with the Russian ambassador. The FBI told the White House about it. They leaked it to the press. It was clear that the Obama administration was intent on doing whatever they could to damage the incoming administration.
After the inauguration, James Comey and Andrew McCabe (the top two people in the FBI) conspired to take down Flynn. Normally any request to speak with a White House employee is handle through the counsel’s office. Instead, McCabe contacted Flynn directly. He lied about the reason for the meeting and pushed Flynn not to have a lawyer present. Flynn met with the agents (including Peter Strzok). They deliberately did not give the warning that a misstatement could result in criminal charges. When asked if he discussed the sanctions Obama had imposed, he said he hadn’t. They had been discussed. Flynn either misremembered or lied.
The Moeller group now had him in their clutches. They vigorously prosecuted him. This took an enormous toll on him and his family. He had to sell his house to pay legal bills. He pled guilty to get this behind him.
Nowhere in any of this is a hint that Flynn was involved in any kind of crime. If he did lie to the FBI, he was obviously wrong. I don’t know the law but believe people should only be charged if they lie to cover up a crime. A mere misstatement of facts should not put them in legal jeopardy.
The judge is now considering Flynn’s fate. I hope he dismisses the charges. Comey and McCabe should be the ones in trouble.
Every little bit of information that comes out the Moeller investigation prompts new speculation about whether or not President Trump is in trouble. Today I would like to focus on those who have faced charges.
The American system of justice works by investigating crimes. People are then indicted if there is sufficient evidence. Justice Moeller style starts by selecting individuals and then tearing their lives apart. The hope is to find something that pressures them to cooperate. If someone misunderstands a question or misremembers, they are indicted for perjury. This has happened to almost everyone who has cooperated. One man has filed a lawsuit claiming he was pressured to lie.
There is no doubt in my mind that Moeller wants to destroy the Trump presidency. Alan Dershowitz suggested that his motive was to achieve personal glory rather than having a political agenda. He staffed it with ardent Democrats including the infamous Peter Strzok and Lisa Page. Some think it will soon wrap up their business. I think they will be around for a long time.
Some of those caught up in this mess are not particularly sympathetic characters. That shouldn’t matter. We should be upset anytime sometime is being mistreated by the legal system.
There are two candidates this week. The runner-up spot goes to the ABC reporters who joked about President Trump’s funeral during the Bush services. Can you imagine the outcry if Fox News made such comments about a Democrat?
The winner is the person from PETA who tweeted about “anti-animal language. They provided a chart with politically correct rephrasing of idioms. For example, we should say “Bring home the bagel” instead of “bring home the bacon” and “Feed a fed horse” rather that “beat a dead horse”.
Organizations hurt their cause when they come up with ridiculous examples of real problems. Fighting racism is not helped by complaining that A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving is racist because of who sits where around a picnic table.
Former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson recently gave some thoughts on President Trump in an interview. He described Trump as “undisciplined, doesn’t like to read, doesn’t like to read briefing reports, doesn’t like to get into the details of a lot of things, but rather just kind of says ‘This is what I believe’”. He went on to say that Trump gets upset when told what he wants to do is a against the law.
This just confirms what we already knew. He seems to believe that, with his gut instincts, neither facts nor the opinion of experts are that important. Sometimes he can be talked out of things but there is no guarantee.
After nearly two years in office, he still doesn’t seem to understand the difference between running his business and running a democracy. Those that report to him have pledged to follow the Constitution, not to do whatever he wants.
Despite all this, his administration has been running fairly smoothly. I give much of the credit to his Chief of Staff, General Kelly. Things were much more chaotic until he came on board. Remember Anthony Scaramucci? Hopefully Kelly’s replacement will be equally strong.
However, I don’t buy into the hysteria we often hear from Democrats. He is not a madman who will launch nuclear weapons. Nor will he become a dictator. We used to hear the same about President Obama from Republicans. There are too many checks and balances in our system of government for that to happen.
Ultimately, he is his own worst enemy. To put it in tennis terms, he is guilty of countless unforced errors. His actions will make his reelection more difficult and make the judgment of history harsher.
Note: Unlike the TV networks, I don’t believe in reruns. There is one exception. I will repeat the following post every December 7 as long as I am blogging.
Today marks the 77th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. It was a devastating strike that resulted in 2,400 deaths. Virtually everyone in the country was affected. Millions traded work clothes for uniforms. Many women went to work in factories. Everyone had to cope with shortages.
We were woefully unprepared. Earlier that year maneuvers were held in Louisiana. Many men carried wooden rifles. A bill to extend the term of draftees was passed that summer by only one vote. It took almost four years but the war was won. Over 400,000 American soldiers never returned home.
Anyone that has the chance to go to Hawaii should go to Pearl Harbor. Visiting the memorial, built atop the Arizona, is an incredible experience. It’s hard not to think about the men permanently entombed below your feet. Nearby is the Missouri, the ship upon which the Japanese surrendered.
When I think of Pearl Harbor, I think of one young man. He was already in the service. He had a 30 day leave starting on December 6. When he reached home, a telegram was waiting ordering him to return. Eventually he caught up with his unit. They were in a California desert since it was feared the Japanese would capture the coastal cities. Soon he was shipped out to Australia. On his second day he was in a truck accident and broke his back.
That man will turn 98 next week. He feels the effects of his injuries every day. Most call him Perry. I call him Dad.
Sometimes I come across news articles that share a common theme. In the last few days I have seen several stories that describe the new Democratic Party.
It is headed by a group of elitists. They obtained their position through a combination of education, wealth, political accomplishment and media exposure. Senator Mazie Hirono of Hawaii made a point that Democrats have trouble connecting on an emotional level. Her reason was because they are really smart. She said “We Democrats know so much”. Comments like that and Nancy Pelosi calling $1,000 crumbs show that they are out of touch.
You don’t have to be one of the people to connect with them. Donald Trump (or someone in his organization) saw that millions of Americans were hurting economically and responded accordingly. The Clinton campaign showed no signs of knowing or caring about their problems.
The rules don’t apply to them. Bernie Sanders didn’t seem too concerned about climate change when he spent $300,000 on private planes in October. As elites, they decide what the problems are and come up with solutions. The American people, not them, bear the impact of those solution.
Identity politics rules. They do whatever is necessary to appeal to their target groups. Recently New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand said “the future is female”. They believe that women, blacks and other groups should vote solely on the basis of their identity. As a white male, I clearly don’t fit in their groups. The closest I come is being visually impaired and physically handicapped. My physical challenges have no more to do with who I am as a person than my eye and hair color.
I don’t have a story to go with the last point. Clearly, hate is a big part of their message. Virtually the entire Clinton campaign was attacking Trump and Republicans for being racists, sexists, etc. They should tell people what they are for, not just what they are against.
My intention is not to attack the party or any of its members. I want to point out what I see as their basic strategy. They couldn’t beat Donald Trump, the least liked presidential candidate in our history.
Republicans shouldn’t take much comfort. They have climbed aboard the SS Donald Trump and are captained by a loose cannon. They lost the House because he made the election about himself and immigration.
Right now, I don’t think either party is capable of winning in 2020. Like 2016, it will likely go to the one that screws up the least.
There are several contenders this week. Stephanie Kifowit, an Illinois legislator, talked about wanting to kill a colleague’s family by infecting them with Legionnaire’s Disease. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez claimed that the victory of herself and fellow leftists is as important as the moon landing. However, this week’s winner is Barbra Streisand.
She stated that our democracy is being assaulted by women who voted for Donald Trump. She claimed that they “don’t believe in their own thoughts” enough to vote against their husbands.
I cannot understand how someone’s view is so perverted that they think a woman exercising her right to vote is assaulting democracy. I guess she wants a democracy where Democrats always win. The only way that can happen is if only one name is on the ballot.
Her attack on women is in the same vein as Hillary Clinton claiming that they voted for Trump because they were afraid to stand up to the men in their lives. The whole idea of identity politics is to tell people they are weak and powerless and need elites like Hillary Clinton to protect them from the evil Republicans.
High school biology was a long time ago. However, I don’t recall learning that having xx chromosomes dictates political belief. Powerful women who seem to believe otherwise are doing a disservice to their gender and their party.
Today millions are mourning the loss of an incredible man. He was blessed with longevity but people are judging him on the quality of his life.
He was born in a world of privilege but sought to excel on his own. He went to an exclusive boarding school and was president of the senior class. He could have used his connections (his father was a senator) to get easy duty during the war. Instead, he enlisted in the Navy on his 18th birthday.
He became the youngest naval aviator in the service. He flew a torpedo bomber aboard an aircraft carrier. One day he was on a mission to bomb the island of Chichijima. His engine caught fire but he still completed his mission before bailing out. He was the only man to end up near the island who wasn’t captured and executed by the Japanese.
He married Barbara Pierce in 1945. They were married an incredible 73 years. They had six children including a future president and a future governor. A daughter, Robin, died of leukemia at age three.
He went to Yale and was captain of the baseball team. He could easily have had a cushy job on Wall Street but chose a different path. He worked as a salesman for an oil service company to learn the business. He co-founded an oil company and later served as its president.
Like his father, he left the business world for public service. He served two terms in Congress. President Eisenhower saw his potential. He them served as UN ambassador, Chairman of the Republican National Committee during Watergate, ambassador to China and head of the CIA.
In 1980 he ran for the presidency but settle for being Reagan’s running mate. During his term as President he formed an incredible coalition to push Saddam Hussein out of Kuwait and was witness to the collapse of the Soviet Union.
He was a man of humility (which some mistook for weakness). He cared about people, often surprising them with acts of kindness. He was a man who lived life to the fullest, including a parachute jump on his 90th birthday.
Like Harry Truman, he was unpopular when he left the presidency but gained in respect as the years passed. I believe history will look upon him kindly.
The caravan of Central Americans has been moving through Mexico. Many have reached the border. Some tried to rush the border and were turned away with tear gas. A few have tried to compare this incident to Hitler gassing millions of Jews. They had no problem when the same thing happened on President Obama’s watch in 2013.
I feel sorry for those in the caravan. The blame lies with the organizers. They had to know it wouldn’t work. The cost to feed and care for all those people is tremendous. I suspect a lot of donations have come from those more interested in a photo op than the welfare of the people involved.
Like it or not, we cannot let people rush the border. We don’t know who is in the group. Undoubtedly, some were criminals. I can’t understand how a parent could use their children as a shield. I suspect that was done to get a better story.
There is a lot wrong with our immigration laws and how President Trump is applying them. Using these poor people to get headlines will only increase the political divide, making it even harder to affect change.
General Motors recently announced that they will be cutting their North American workforce by 15% by the end of next year. Both white-collar and blue-collar workers will be affected. They will also discontinue six car models.
This was in response to several changes affecting the auto industry. They compete with companies that have substantially lower labor costs. People aren’t buying nearly as many sedans as they used to. They need to prepare for a future with electric cars and driverless cars. Finally, they are being hurt by President Trump’s trade war with China. This hits GM particularly hard since they sell a lot of cars in China, including 80% of the Buicks sold worldwide.
Automakers have a long history of not making changes until they are in trouble. I applaud GM for being proactive.
President Trump sees it differently. He said he “was very tough” with the GM CEO and warned that they “were playing around with the wrong person”. If he really wanted to save those jobs, he could have arranged a meeting. All this hostility has accomplished is to feed his gargantuan ego.
This gives out the wrong message. Who would want to build a plant here and face the wrath of the most powerful person in the world if they ever have to close it.
Trump, the Republican Party and the country would be better off if he could gain some self-control. After nearly two years in office, he shows absolutely no signs of changing.