The “Yes We Caine” Mutiny

The GOP no longer functions as a political party. Weak on national security, big deficit spenders, they stand for nothing but guns, God and money. The consolidation of racist status quo dependent deplorables and self avowed “God before country” Raptureheads hellbent on a new world order under a single tent. The entire Republican Party little more than a caravan of criminals and corrupt enablers. The American Taliban rises.

Our traditional checks and balances are no match for the unconventional threat we face. Our Democratic leadership ill prepared to hold to an account an Executive that has no care for tradition, precedent or the rule of law. As a nation we need to accept a basic premise. The fight to save our Republic must not wait until November 2020. The constitutional crisis is here. The battle begins now.

It is time to call all hands to deck and seize back control of America’s future. To preserve the American dream requires we, the people return to our patriotic roots. Take to the harbors and throw the tea overboard. Throw on your life vests and refuse to take a backseat in our political future. Prepare not just to march on Washington, but to sit and sleep there too. Take matters into our hands and start a “Yes We Caine” mutiny to rid our Republic of an unhinged captain.

A peaceful resistance requires sacrifice. To move forward the dreams of our ancestors we must demand answers. We must recapture the audacity of hope and hold those who wish to trample on our ideals to account. The spirit of the American people has been a beacon of hope and freedom throughout the world for over two centuries. Our diversity our greatest strength, the backbone of our success. Take comfort in our history, trust in the experiment in individual freedoms.

Progress knows but one direction and never includes a return to the past. It’s time we move forward.

The “Yes We Can” Mutiny

Can’t stop a Nazi with a law book” – Herman Wouk, The Caine Mutiny

Traditional checks and balances do not work when up against unprecedented threats. History and science teach this lesson repeatedly. Denial and time is no way to cure a cancer. To sit and wait on the outcome of an impeachment inquiry or a national election to remove this caravan of criminals and corrupt enablers as foolish a plan. 

It’s not America’s immigrations laws that place our nation at risk. It’s this administrations callous and wanton ignorance of history that poses a clear and present danger to our national security. It’s the lack of empathy in our foreign policy the open betrayal of a loyal ally that breeds hostility, births sleeper cells and lone wolf fanatics desperate for revenge. It’s the fickleness and swiftness in which we ripped up the Iran deal, pull out of trade deals and abandon the military fields that erodes trust in our America exceptionalism and extinguishes Lady Liberty’s torch.

The damage this administration is doing to this country cannot be overstated. It’s more than Kurdish blood that will spill as the result of Demonic Donald’s latest betrayal. More than the reconstitution of ISIS that threatens national security. If American loyalties can be swayed so easily and years of diplomacy be overturned with each change of administration then why would any nation dare align with us in the future? Why would any tribe or ethnic group make a strategic partnership in our fight against the next terror group. Combine this with our eagerness to pull out of other hard negotiated treaties and truces and it will take decades for America to regain the trust of the international community.

There are 40,000 Kurds who live in America, 15,000 in Nashville alone. Many of whom were refugees of prior battles. Immigrants to our nation under kinder, wiser administrations who sought to flee the ravages of war and poverty for a better life. Imagine as they now stare at their screens and scroll their social media timelines in search of relatives and survivors. The anger they too must feel. The thirst for vengeance that leads to irrational behavior.

We as a nation may no longer afford to be passive. We cannot continue to ignore the damage being done to our reputation and pretend it does not define us all. We, the people, are responsible for the actions and behaviors we observe each day and fail to condone.

The impeachment inquiry and prospective 2020 Blue Wave are nice but ineffective in the larger constitutional battle upon us. They fail to neutralize the immediate damage and risk of catastrophe that awaits our republic. They may be palliative measures to soothe the masses, but they also bide time for the ruling Executive. Affords the opportunity to spread disease and harden defense. To produce a manufactured counter narrative and use his past television experience to craft a set of alternative facts that will marginalize, belittle, conflate, de-legitimize and, if necessary, squash any threat. 

America must learn from the ongoing Hong Kong and Indonesia protests and the recent successes in South Korea, Ecuador and Puerto Rico. Understand that to force change you must commit to it. One off protests and elections are not enough. If we believe our will is not being followed and the government is no longer acting for the people then we must drive that narrative in ways that are impossible to ignore. We must take to the streets daily.

If we are to insist that we are a nation in which all men, regardless of race, gender, religion or national origin are free and equal. If we believe in the Bill of Rights that put the great American experiment in motion, that guaranteed certain freedoms for all Americans and bestowed inalienable rights on all mankind. Then we must act to defend it when we see it being trampled upon by a despot. 

We must take to the harbor and throw the tea overboard. Refuse to take a backseat in our politics. Not just march on Washington, but sit and sleep there too.

Perception and Reality

I once had a boss who was very fond of the phrase “perception is reality.” Used it as an excuse to justify his inaction for almost any employee related conflict. No point in meeting to explain whatever employee issue was being raised that day “perception is reality” he’d say. It drove me crazy each and every time. While it’s true that perception is an individual’s sense of reality. Let’s also be clear, reality is reality. I may perceive the Earth to be flat, but science tells us otherwise.

A transcendent leader, one interested in building consensus and committed to the common good, understands the dangers of false perception. They work tirelessly, oftentimes over communicating with their “constituents” to shape perception to match reality.

Unfortunately, perception is no less important to a leader of ill intent. One who seeks to act only in his own self interest but is nonetheless dependent on the support of the masses to advance his/her agenda. They too work tirelessly to shape perception, only in their case success depends on perception matching a false reality. One that will justify their action and prevent ultimate accountability. One that manipulates others to act against their own self interests.

Our Comrade in Chief and his merry bannon of deplorables have made a career shaping perception to match a false reality. Led by the talentless tycoon turned “reality” show President who bankrupted both real estate conglomerates and casinos at the height of the economy and whose greatest accomplishment is being born into privilege this White House continuously tries to undermine transparency and prevent informed consent. They know the only way to mask incompetence and to hide ill intent, is to mask it. To use misdirection, doublespeak, sleight of hand, technology and sound bites to distract and manipulate the way the brain processes information. Their very hold on power dependent on this perception.

Informed consent is the constitutional responsibility of the American citizenry. Whether dealing with issues of sensible gun control, impacts of climate change, or treason it is our job to push past the sound bites, propaganda and words of those entrusted to represent our interests and find out the truth of the situation. To expose the illusionist and ruin the trick.

Though he didn’t really make the Statute of Liberty disappear David Copperfield once captured the country’s attention when he made the world perceive that he had. Millions clambered for answers wanting to know the truth. Donald Trump on the other hand has in reality rendered Lady Liberty’s words “moot” yet the country continues to chase kneeling squirrels. To quote Twitler, “Sad.”

The Big Picture

Trump continues to act with the knowledge that he is not only Commander in Chief of the most powerful military in world history, but he may also have half the military might of the world behind him as a fail safe. He knowingly uses whatever means necessary and proactively uses all the powers of his office, regardless of optics, to squash any attempt to legally remove him from office. He ignores subpoenas, responds to document requests with sharpied graphs and selective memory transcribed non-transcripts of taped phone calls, and otherwise obstructs and avoids any actual attempt to hold him to account for his heinous acts.

It’s clear from his tweets, words and behavior that the Don truly believes himself above the law. He does not behave as one bound by tradition, precedent or rule of law. In fact from the time he took the public stage he has acted and behaved as one who knows the fix is in. Remember despite being double digits down in the polls he made clear that he would contest the results of the election if he was not the winner.

To Trump’s credit he’s been quite transparent all along. Review his twitter feed from a different perspective and it almost reads as if it is both a self confession to treason and a whistle blower report (the good kind). In many conversations from “Russia, if you’re listening” right up to his present day public echo of “China if you’re listening,” Trump openly flaunts his treasonous behavior for all to see. It’s what makes his threats of Civil War and cries of a coup, and accusations of treason so dangerous.

When you see the completed puzzle you realize that these are not random pieces, projections or the rants and raves of a lunatic. Trump’s words are more than empty threats and part of a greater design. They are the culmination of the best laid plans. Years of careful planning and coordinated efforts by those who do not hold America’s best interests at heart. Enemies both foreign and domestic whose agendas and values do not thrive in a representative republic such as that envisioned by our founding fathers. The consolidation of God before country Raptureheads, Russia enabled military hawks and the racist status quo dependent deplorables all under the GOP big tent. Donald Trump nothing more than a golden calf to shepherd the message; a Trojan horse in which to deliver the troops and a Midas god to deliver the gold to his puppeteers.

Continue to play the scenarios out and they only grow more horrifying. It’s not hard to see how a new world order emerges. A global oligarchy controlled by a fascist few. An international caste system of haves and have nots in which the world’s most valuable natural resources are controlled by the world’s most powerful nations led by white supremacists, missionaries and colonists. The many working for the few. A permanent military state in which any remaining illusion of individual freedoms would be just that.

When viewed through this prism almost all of Trump’s forreign policy decisions suddenly make sense. The wag the dog drama, escalated rhetoric, and ensuing peace agreements with traditional hostile nations a fait accompli. Russia (Iran) and China (N Korea) in control of their rogue pawns as they formalize their growing international influence through negotiations. Traditional allies pushed aside to make room at the table.

All roads lead to Jerusalem.

In Jesus’ name.

Amen

The Case of the Ukrainian Whistleblowers

There’s no real mystery to this Ukraine story. It has all the nuance of a classic Scooby Doo episode. Right down to the unmasked bumbling villain.

Donald Trump is a transactional leader. He has no real agenda beyond his own self interests and approaches each situation as if there is a winner and loser. He cares not for the collective well being or long term impacts on our country or citizenry. For him it is all about being on the winning side and immediate gratification. Past alliances, traditions, procedures, laws, or precedent be damned! Whatever chips necessary to close the transaction and come out on top is what the art of the deal demands he include.

Trump does not think or act like a public servant. Traditional checks and balances are ineffective against an unconventional threat such as he. The only way to hold him to account is to starve him of the attention he seeks and take him out of the game. To change the rules of the game and draw a playing field that effectively neuters him.

To defeat Trump you must place him in a defensive position and cut off his access to the two things that sustain him and keeps him afloat, unlimited resources and a devoted audience. The necessity of an impeachment inquiry is to do just this. Regardless of what the Senate may do, House Democrats must seize the daily narrative away from this merry bannon of criminals and corrupt enablers and force them to spend all resources and efforts in defense of their freedom.

Make no mistake, it’s not impeachment that scares the bejeezus out of Deranged Donald. It’s the loss of his freedom and the knowledge that the Trump family brand will be permanently and irreparably destroyed that makes him so desperate to stay in power. He’ll do anything to ensure that remains the case. Cling to the shield of the presidency like a an orange moth to a cocoon.

If not for that meddling whistleblower, he may have gotten away with it too

Follow the Leader

Trump’s latest abhorrent tweetstorm in which he accuses Adam Schiff of treason, seeks to confront the whistleblower and encourages a second Civil War with cries of Witchhunt and accusations of coups proves once again that he’s unfit to be elementary school President, let alone the so called leader of the free world. If our Comrade in Chief wants to talk about “enemies of the state,” or protect against a clear and present danger I suggest he take a hard look in the mirror.

Analyze those essential attributes that the greatest leaders share. Compare his own actions against past leaders to examine how he stacks up in history. Is Trump destined to be a cautionary tale of how absolute power corrupts absolutely or does he behave and exemplify the behaviors of those champions of freedom? The wisest of kings, leaders and community organizers who acted with singular purpose and are remembered for contributions that advanced human civilization and individual freedoms. Make no mistake. Such leaders share easily identifiable behaviors from which to compare your own leadership style;

They safeguard open communications and transparency. They do not obstruct investigation or silence and threaten whistle blowers and leakers. They protect anonymity by offering hotlines and access to independent arbiters.

They emphasize collaboration and inclusiveness. They do not fear diversity. They embrace it.

They welcome opposition. They do not suppress feedback or dissenting opinions. They listen and learn from them.

They build a shared vision of the future. They do not think perception is reality. They rely on facts, science and logic to shape perception to match reality.

They own their actions. They do not finger point, blame predecessors or deny accountability for their decisions. They understand that once empowered the buck stops with them. Period.

They problem solve. They do not act a prisoner of circumstance or play the victim. They innovate and experiment with new paradigms to limit or remove obstacles.

They prioritize knowing their people. They do not view empathy as a weakness. They know it to be a virtue.

They extend kindness. They do not bully. They nurture.

They encourage teamwork. They do not ostracize, belittle, or build walls. They promote commonalities, break barriers and build bridges.

They lead with hope. They do not rule by negativity and fear. They grow consensus through transparency and communication.

They create opportunity for all. They do not close doors or instill artificial barriers to entry. They rely on objective measures to reward and promote all those who merit consideration.

In the course of history there have been countless examples of leaders who chose to rule otherwise. Who ruled through fear mongering, authoritarian accountability and slogans. Who preyed on the weakness of the disenfranchised to promote their own agenda. Who gave voice to the extremes.

But riddle me this. Has such a leader ever been on the right side of history? Have they ever progressed our collective interests? Brought us closer to that more perfect union our founders dreamed of?

The answer is obvioua

Context is Everything

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The dog whistles turn into bugle calls as the beat towards Civil War goes on. Trump has never been more than a paper tiger in this battle. A necessary distraction as the real enemies coalesced, mobilized and fortified undetected. A marionette to amuse the masses with stories of greatness and possibility. A pawn to sacrifice in the battles ahead as the grand masters calculate their next moves; position their knights, and prepare to dethrone their enemies.

Context is everything. To properly evaluate a leader’s effectiveness one must consider their agenda and mission. This is separate from a job performance which is tied to one’s role and responsibility. Though you would hope the interests align, it is possible for a leader to still be effective in advancing their mission, even while simultaneously failing in their job responsibilities.

Take Donald Trump for instance (please). It is clear to most that Donald Trump has failed in his role as President of the United States. He makes no effort to advance the collective interests of our citizenry and in fact takes glee in alienating those who don’t support his cause. He has weakened our national security interests and eroded cultural and societal norms.

As our nation’s Chief Diplomat the President is not supposed to intentionally and with purpose alienate our allies, antagonize foes, leak national security photos and briefings, attack our intelligence agencies or place active foreign agents and known security risks in charge of our National Security Agency. Yet this is exactly what has occurred under Trump’s watch.

Scan the headlines and observe how far the boundaries of acceptability have stretched domestically. Calls for Civil War! Accusations of treason! Demands to out an anonymous whistleblower. Forget the quid pro quod with Zelensky, the layovers at Trump owned resorts and kickbacks to nearby fueling stations! Talk of a second round of tax breaks, permanent cuts to entitlements, escalation of ridiculous trade wars, all new innovations that benefit the oligarchy at the expense of the worker. That advance the agenda of Donald Trump and those he serve. Immigrants and refugees turned away at our borders to ensure the whitening of America. All roads lead to Jerusalem anyways.

Understand Donald Trump has been a successful leader in that his agenda has never been that of a traditional President. His agenda is not to advance the cause of ordinary Americans. Donald Trump seeks to advance the interests of Donald Trump and those he may benefit from, regardless of party or nationality. In this regard, Trump’s presidency has been a rousing success. If that requires the nation be divided and dissenters cleaved from the whole, so be it. All is fair game and potential collateral in the art of the deal.