The Party of Pompeii

Many of us are familiar with the story of Pompeii. The Italian city built in the shadow of and ultimately buried in the destruction of Mt. Vesuvius. Prior to the volcanic eruption Pompeii was a bustling resort town and home to many of Rome’s most enlightened citizens. Though residents of Pompeii were long aware of their volcanic neighbor and the volatile threat it posed, they took for granted that they would survive any eruption.

The city flourished and expanded even as the risk of explosion grew greater. More than 15 years prior to its fateful eruption Vesuvius rumbled triggering a powerful earthquake in the nearby town. Yet through acrobatic displays of cognitive dissonance and incredible displays of hubris the residents remained steadfast in their belief that they were safe from the dangers bubbling beneath the surface. The city continued to prosper, its sustained success taken for granted by entrusted leadership.

Even in the midst of the powerful eruption that took place in 79AD residents of Pompeii had time to flee yet faced with an unconventional threat they failed to understand the immediate dangers that lay ahead. The folly of their ignorance cost them their lives. Within days of its eruption, the city and thousands of its residents lay buried in ash and molten lava. Centuries later the city was remarkably excavated. It’s people preserved in ash for history to note the expression of surprise on the faces of the deceased as they were suddenly faced with the reality of their situation.

Americans, independents, Democrats, progressives and conservatives alike best take note of this cautionary tale. Like Pompeii our traditional checks and balances are no match for the unconventional threat we as a nation face. Though the danger in front of us may be made of flesh and blood the risk is no less real. The destruction left behind will be no less predictable or deadly.

The party of Trump is not interested in the preservation of the American dream. Their end goal is not to advance the experiment in self governance and individual freedoms that has sustained America for near 250 years. What this caravan of corruption and criminal enablers hope to establish is a hodgepodge Christofacist theocratic oligarchy which protects the privileged status of those in control of today’s status quo, while simultaneously promoting the moral code and virtuosity of those who serve God before country. Fulfilling the dispensationalist agenda of that hypocritical band of fundamentalist glory seekers striving to create a holy army to unconditionally serve in the rapturous war to end all wars.

These merry bannon of misfit Raptureheads, Russia enabled military hawks, and true deplorables all consolidated their forces under the tent of Trump. The only man with an ego so large that it can consume and tame such a wild divergent group of anti-Democratic self interests. A conman so skilled in the art of the deal that he was able to reward the desire of all those whom he served so long as they remain willing to hold their nose and bury their heads as to how their gains were obtained.

Welcome to modern day Vesuvian threat that is the entirety of the modern day GOP. A party that for years smoked and billowed warnings to our Constitutional Republic now finds itself on the outskirts of our most sacred walls. The very infrastructure which has held our citizenry together lay melting beneath the literal heat emanating from our darkened skies and apathetic hearts. The evidence lay bare for all to see that this imminent threat 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 2022. The constitutional crisis is here. The battle for the soul of our nation is ongoing. We cannot simply continue to react to the latest trauma. The danger grows nearer each day. There is no guarantee remaining safeguards will contain the threat through December 2022, let alone November 2024.

Our Republic’s survival requires proactive action and sacrifice. It requires the immediate arrest of Donald Trump before he may claim such act Is in retaliation for his announcing an intention to once again seek the office of presidency. The damage being done to this country cannot be overstated. Further delays to safeguard our nation only ensures more than the blood of the oppressed and protestors will spill. More than the bodies consumed by a preventable pandemic that will fill our morgues. The carnage levied against our citizenry will leave gaping scars on America’s soul visible for generations to come #LOCKHIMUPNOW

The Man, the Myth, the Monster

The plate tossing, steering wheel grabbing, secret service choking character we witness today is the embodiment of a leader who was able to skip the lessons of middle management. The art of empathy, humility, accountability and communication. A “stable genius” only in his own mind who was so poor at business he literally bankrupted both casinos and real estate conglomerates at the height of the economy. In every way the opposite of a man who embodies the original American dream.

As if it wasn’t obvious before, the January 6th Commission and the courageous testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson and other witnesses has stripped the emperor of all remaining undergarments. Exposed Donald Trump as a man of flawed character. The embodiment of the 21st century American dream. A child of the 1% with no discernible talent, skills or virtue beyond that of self promotion. A self aggrandizing narcissistic sycophant with an unhealthy obsession for celebrity and fame. A self hating man child who overcompensates for his shortcomings by bullying, intimidating and surrounding himself with “yes men.”

A man in constant need of validation because deep down he fears he will never live up to daddy’s expectations, never be truly loved. A man with an ego so fragile he can’t deal with dissent or opposition. Who spent a lifetime avoiding accountability and consequences by silencing critics with bribes, quid pro quos and empty promises. Who justifies his deplorable behavior through incredible displays of cognitive dissonance; scapegoating, and otherwise shifting blame to the underprivileged, the disenfranchised, and those less able to defend themselves.

Like most bullies this so called President stands for nothing. He is driven by vengeance, looking only for the next score to settle, fight to win. All he knows is how to marginalize, belittle, conflate, de-legitimize and, when necessary, squash dissent and opposition. Each Trump Rally and “truth” allows him to continue to present alternative facts, only now without the alternatives. Lies then become truth, and perception reality.

Donald Trump is not the cause of America’s ails. He is simply its most recognizable symptom. The dry cough of the national pandemic that is the Republican Party. It’s time we vaccinate the public from the poison they spread before it chokes what little life remains of our system of checks and balances #LockHimUpNow

What if…

What if…

Two simple words that comprise one of the most powerful phrases in the English language. Once the mind enters a “what if” wormhole it may be lost for hours. Occupied in an endless maze of regrets and gratitudes. What if I had been there…What if i hadn’t quit…What if those chads didn’t hang…What if she had said yes…What if I spoke up…

Donald Trump is far from an original. The recent past alone provides a litany of would be authoritarians who proved capable of hijacking democratic institutions to slowly consolidate power. That Trump is the first to so blatantly do so from the Oval Office hardly makes him unique in his technique. He seeks to divide the citizens of this country along racial, socioeconomic and political lines in order to deflect from his own scandals and advance the agenda and interests of a select few. He uses his bully pulpit to marginalize, belittle, conflate, delegitimize and, if necessary, squash dissent and opposition. Doing so allows him to continue presenting alternative facts, only now without the alternatives. Lies then become truth, and perception reality.

Though his tactics are tried and true the danger posed is no less real. Donald Trump and his merry bannon of deplorables pose a clear and present danger to the experiment in individual freedoms our founding fathers set in motion generations ago. He makes no secret of his intent; his desire to deconstruct and eliminate outdated democratic institutions. To rip the very fabric of America’s soul from its identity. To dim the light that serves as a beacon of hope and freedom to the poor, disenfranchised and oppressed who suffer across the globe.

The right to a free and independent press. The right of assembly. The right to be free from religious persecution. The necessity of checks and balances with three equal, though often inept, branches of government. These essential ideals are all under attack. The realization that we are the great melting pot. That diversity IS the American identity. We can’t change that anymore than a tiger can change its stripes. A list of all the great contributions immigrants and refugees have made to this country would dwarf a list of their misdeeds a million times over. Yet that is what appears to be at stake.

To those who continue to support this cabal of God before country Raptureheads, Russia enabled military hawks and status quo dependent deplorables, understand this. All you are doing is identifying yourself as a dinosaur. Painting a scarlet letter on your sleeve that your way of thinking and very belief system will soon be relegated to the history books. Think carefully about your next move.

The pathway to perdition is paved in ignorance. Do not suffer that fate. Do not remain passive. Do not be left to wonder what would have happened had you spoken up earlier. Future generations need never question where you stood when our Republic was hijacked

Simply turning off the faucet doesn’t make the water safe if the tub is already filled with septic infested water. To do that requires additional action. You can either drain the tank and start all over again or dilute it with so many chemicals and purifiers that it enables you to easily identify and remove all pollutants from the larger body of water.

President Biden and Democratic leadership have to understand that simply removing Trump from office did not eradicate the threat to our Republic. They need to proactively identify and communicate with the American people just who the enemy is in “the battle for the soul of our nation.” For surely they were not so naive as to if think the enemy was limited to but one man. Surely they are not caught unawares by the breadth and depth of the enemies forces. It would be impossible to believe that by now they have not witnessed the Trojan Horses parked in the center of the Capital Rotunda and adorning our Halls of Justice.

So how to explain the reactive environment in which America now finds itself? More importantly, how to turn the tides? For starters President Biden needs to bring back a weekly fireside chat to speak directly i Americans. Take over the major networks, all streaming platforms and social media sites to deliver a direct and clear message to Americans. Speak only to the 60% of the audience that wishes to preserve the dreams of our ancestors. Read direct from our Declaration of Independence. The unassailable vision of a land in which all inhabitants are provided equal opportunity to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

Next identify the clear and obvious risk that now faces that uniquely American vision. Name those who wish to snuff out the hopes and aspirations upon which our nation’s identity was borne. Question how policies which seek to control and restrict an individual’s personal choice, advance the status quo and serve the interests of the controlling few are consistent with our founding values.

To shape perception requires a clear plan forward that will again align our country politic with mission. A clear mitigation strategy of how Democrats will work to remove all vestiges of Donald Trump and the GOP stink that poisoned our wells. Whether they choose to drain the poison spread by a treasonous slug through impeachment of all those he was not qualified to nominate or dilute its influence through expansion of the court and other legislative maneuvers matters not. So long as there is a clear and actionable plan presented that will purify our most sacred institutions and necessary checks and balances #ProtestTheGOP

Lights? Camera? We Need Action!

Donald Trump’s guilt or innocence is not a political question. Whether to charge him with a crime or not should not be dependent upon public polling. So will someone please explain to me why our DOJ and elected Democratic officials continue to play Russian Roulette with our nation’s national security? Why allow a clear and present danger unfettered access to the outside world?

It is obvious to the majority of patriotic Americans that Donald Trump does not have America’s best interests at heart. That he bears ill intent towards the current administration and the powers that be. That he knowingly attempted to disrupt the peaceful transfer of power and incited an insurrection intended to do just that. That he built his reputation on the art of the deal and happens to possesses access to our nation’s most sensitive secrets. A pretty valuable asset on the black market! So riddle me this, why do we allow such a character to remain free? How is a nation to heal when it’s abuser continues to menacingly stalk us and threatens to reappear to finish what he started?

While I applaud the Committee’s showmanship and preparation and begrudgingly offer newfound respect for the Cheney name, it is difficult for me to understand the end objective. Eighteen months after committing the crime I’d prefer the alleged criminal be tried in an actual televised criminal prosecution. We are long past the point of probable cause, the standard upon which arrest is usually predicated upon. Rather the legal strategy, evidence and motive has already been gathered and presented in such a public setting that it will become exceedingly difficult to impanel a non-biased jury in the event the DOJ ever did see fit to bring charges.

Given the witness testimony and unimpeachable evidence it is clear that not just Trump, but the vast majority of the GOP if not directly engaged, served as accessories after the fact in a seditious conspiracy to prevent the peaceful transfer of power to President Elect Joe Biden. Yet even with this knowledge cemented by the efforts of the Commission what is being done to prevent its reoccurrence? The time to act was yesterday but to date no legislation appears to be advancing that will restrain Donald Trump, or any other candidate who may be under active investigation for treason, from pursuing the Office of Commandeer in Chief. Do Democratic leaders understand that if the GOP reclaim control of the House this Fall then ALL efforts at accountability are kaput. There will be no “we’ll get ‘em next time” in which to settle the score.

If the sole purpose of this committee is to establish guilt without accountability then I fear that a misguided strategy. If the hope is that it will spur DOJ to file charges that too is a dangerous assumption. A skilled attorney could make an argument that the entire affair prejudices the likelihood of a fair trial to such an extent that it may actually make it less likely that criminal charges against Trump actually ever get filed. For not only may the entire jury pool be prejudiced by this orchestrated affair, but sensational anecdotes that have nothing to do with the guilt or innocence of the accused may be used by Trump’s PR team to discredit and impeach otherwise reliable witnesses.

We saw an example of this in the aftermath of the Cassidy Hutchinson testimony. Disputed accounts of the sensational 2nd hand and otherwise irrelevant detail of Trump’s attack on a Secret Service agent now being used to discredit her entire testimony. Extemporaneous details that have nothing to do with Trump’s actual guilt or innocence being offered to support claims the entire affair is a bipartisan “witch hunt” and “deep state conspiracy!”

Even a domesticated dog grows dangerous when cornered. When they fear the end is near. To tighten the noose around Trump’s neck now as he remains free and unemcumbered seems yet another reactive move. A response to the narrative already written by this merry bannon of deplorables. It’s time to be proactive in this fight. In this battle for the “soul of our nation.” It is time to force the inevitable confrontation between those who seek to preserve the status quo and those who seek to preserve the American dream. To start this nation on a path of reconciliation requires the immediate arrest and subsequent public trial of Donald J Trump #LOCKHIMUPNOW

The Paper Tiger King

Americans must understand who Trump is and what we as a nation and the vast majority of our citizenry are up against. We must come to grips that Trump has never been more than the paper tiger king in this battle. The Joe Exotic of American politics propped up by a supporting cast of deplorable characters.

Trump of course is the perfect rube. A literal caricature of every villain of every film ever made. A billionaire product of affluent affirmative action who sells himself as a man of the people. A self proclaimed tycoon who was placed directly at the top of the business pyramid. Never understanding what it means to actually lead; to advance on merit, not name.

The plate tossing, steering wheel grabbing, secret service choking character we witness today is the embodiment of a leader who was able to skip the lessons of middle management, the art of empathy, humility, accountability and communication. A “stable genius” only in his own mind who was so poor at business he literally bankrupted both casinos and real estate conglomerates at the height of the economy. In every way the opposite of a man who embodies the original American dream.

As if it wasn’t obvious before, the January 6th Commission and the courageous testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson and other witnesses has stripped the emperor of all remaining undergarments. Exposed Donald Trump as a man of flawed character. The embodiment of the 21st century American dream. A child of the 1% with no discernible talent, skills or virtue beyond that of self promotion. A self aggrandizing narcissistic sycophant with an unhealthy obsession for celebrity and fame. A self hating man child who overcompensates for his shortcomings by bullying, intimidating and surrounding himself with “yes men.”

A man in constant need of validation because deep down he fears he will never live up to daddy’s expectations, never be truly loved. A man with an ego so fragile he can’t deal with dissent or opposition. Who spent a lifetime avoiding accountability and consequences by silencing critics with bribes, quid pro quos and empty promises. Who justifies his deplorable behavior through incredible displays of cognitive dissonance; scapegoating, and otherwise shifting blame to the underprivileged, the disenfranchised, and those less able to defend themselves.

Like most bullies our so called President stands for nothing. He is driven by vengeance, looking only for the next score to settle, fight to win. All he knows is how to marginalize, belittle, conflate, de-legitimize and, when necessary, squash dissent and opposition. Each Trump Rally and “truth” allows him to continue to present alternative facts, only now without the alternatives. Lies then become truth, and perception reality.

Donald Trump is not the cause of America’s ails. He is simply its most recognizable symptom. The dry cough of the national pandemic that is the Republican Party. It’s time we vaccinate the public from the poison they spread before it chokes what little life remains of our system of checks and balances #LockHimUpNow

Dirty Rotten Scoundrel

“Those who willingly accept being conned are as corrupt as those who con them.” – Tom Robbins, Villa Incognito

Friends, deplorables, countrymen, lend me your ears;

Listen, I get it. It sucks to be duped. To get your hopes up believing that someone is the real deal. That they are going to fight the rigged system they got rich off of to level the playing field for the common man.

It’s easy to believe in hope when it’s packaged correctly. Don’t feel bad. Young and old, rich and poor, black or white all of us are susceptible to a good con. It’s truly one of life’s great equalizers that knows no prejudice.

As for Trump, well he is the ultimate con man. He identified a weakness and took advantage of it. Spun a yarn and sold America a big heaping turd of a promise to make us great again.

Now is the time to face reality though. To open your eyes and judge a person on the truth of their action. To tune out the sound bites and instead trust in the leaked recordings. It may sting a bit, but suck it up buttercup.

We’re at that point of the show where the buffoonish villain has overstayed his welcome. Pull on your big boy pants and get out of the grift now. Before we lose everything.

Understand Donald Trump is not on your side. He’s never been on your side. He’s not even a real Republican. Without regards to morality or values he simply follows whatever path he believes leads to the most power and money. #LockHimUpNow

Pawn of the Rich and Putinful

All Americans must understand who Trump is and what we as a nation are up against. We must come to grips that Trump has never been more than the paper tiger king in this battle. The Joe Exotic of American politics propped up by a supporting cast of deplorable characters.

Trump of course is the perfect rube. A literal caricature of every villain of every film ever made. A billionaire product of affluent affirmative action who sells himself as a man of the people. A self proclaimed tycoon who was placed directly at the top of the business pyramid. Never understanding what it means to actually lead. To advance on merit, not name. Able to skip the lessons of middle management, the art of empathy, humility, accountability and communication. A genius only in his own mind who was so poor at business he literally bankrupted both casinos and real estate conglomerates at the height of the economy.

Donald Trump is a man of flawed character. The embodiment of the 21st century American dream. A child of the 1% with no discernible talent, skills or virtue beyond that of self promotion. A self aggrandizing narcissistic sycophant with an unhealthy obsession for celebrity and fame. A self hating man child who overcompensates for his shortcomings by bullying, intimidating and surrounding himself with “yes men.”

A man in constant need of validation because deep down he fears he will never live up to daddy’s expectations, never be truly loved. A man with an ego so fragile he can’t deal with dissent or opposition. Who spent a lifetime avoiding accountability and consequences by silencing critics with bribes, quid pro quos and empty promises. Who justifies his deplorable behavior through incredible displays of cognitive dissonance; scapegoating, and otherwise shifting blame to the underprivileged, the disenfranchised, and those less able to defend themselves.

Like most bullies Donald stands for nothing. He is driven by vengeance, looking only for the next score to settle, fight to win. All he knows is how to marginalize, belittle, conflate, de-legitimize and, when necessary, squash dissent and opposition. Each Trump rally allows him to continue to present alternative facts, only now without the alternatives. Lies then become truth, and perception reality.

Donald Trump is not the cause of America’s ails. He is simply its most recognizable symptom. The dry cough of the national pandemic that is the Republican Party. Each day they spread their poison and choke what little life remains of our system of checks and balances until soon all that will remain is the virus itself

Tales of a Boiling Frog

There’s a story about boiling frogs. According to lore if you place a frog into a pot of boiling water it will jump right out, but if the frog is put in a pot of warm water and then brought to a slow boil it will not perceive of the danger until it’s too late. The poor frog is cooked to death.

The lesson of the story isn’t found in the frog’s death, but in it’s life. It’s that the frog never thought to escape as the water approached its boiling point. Freedom was a simple hop away but the frog chose to remain passive because it couldn’t even perceive of the danger that lay ahead. Welcome to America’s democracy.

The warning signs are all there. The erosion of checks and balances between legislative and executive branch. The partisan judiciary that serves God or dollar before constitution. The integration and influence of church upon state. The war on the free press and mainstreaming of Tucker Carlson and the Fox News Ministry of Propaganda. The reckless wag the dog foreign policy.

The takeover of state legislatures and passage of laws that restrict voting rights. The gerrrymandering of constituents to predetermined results. The enactment of artificial barriers to entry that exclude and limit full representation. Safeguards of the status quo that will enable enable sycophants to overturn the will of the people, even election results in the absence of evidence of fraud or malfeasance.

These, and other successful efforts already erode the power of the individual. When you further implement legislation that grants and bestows individual rights upon amorphous corporate conglomerates. Then you truly tip the scales of influence so that the barons of Wall Street and the lobbyists who enable them enjoy far greater political representation than the individual store clerk, call agent or working class Main Street laborer.

America’s democratic institutions, her standing as the beacon of hope and freedom to the world’s oppressed and underprivileged, is dimming. The vision of our founding fathers compromised by the rise of a global oligarchy. The interests of the few prioritized over the dreams of the many. The majority of us understand this and are able to see through the false equivalents and whataboutism. We recognize that today’s GOP is nothing more than the Guardians Of Putin. A party of extremists who seek only the consolidation of power, wealth, and religious virtuosity within their own privileged tribe. No longer advocates of a representative democracy their entire agenda is to secure the status quo. To do whatever necessary, trade whatever freedom, and betray whatever alliance necessary to secure their privileged place in society long past the point demographics of a representative democracy will otherwise allow.

It’s time for the majority to wake up. We must not allow past experience to lull us into a false sense of security. Trump may be out of office but the same cabal of corruption that lit the stove are still in positions of power and influence. Are continuing to raise the heat on the proverbial pot in anticipation of their next course. Prepping the next January 6th in the hopes of a more satisfactory conclusion. The water is getting mighty warm. It’s time to jump out. Recognize what is at stake. Traditional checks and balances do not apply to unconventional threats.

If the majority of Americans wish to preserve the American political system, we cannot afford to sit back passively and wait for future Election Days to voice the will of the people. The stakes are too high and the future too nebulous. We need to engage in bold and direct action. National strikes, sit-ins, daily demonstrations and other disruptive but non-violent methods. We need to leave our comfort zones and make proactive sacrifice.

We must not wait to remove from positions of influence those who knowingly do not serve America’s interests before all others. The demands for swift accountability to eliminate the threat that corrupt elected officials pose to the very safeguards meant to protect our political system must be heeded. Those dregs of our society who conspired in the orchestration of the January 6th insurrection, or otherwise participated in, aided in, or served as an accessory after the fact to those who sought to interfere with the peaceful transition of Executive power, must be pushed to the shadows and extremes of political debate.

We must insist our leaders collaborate across party lines to restore American democracy. Reestablish accountability and the equal application of the rule of law. Lean into our democratic values, the individual freedoms we often take for granted, and act with the urgency the situation demands. Before the water boils and it becomes too late to otherwise react.