Donald Trump Is Finished

October 1, 2019
Posted in Blog
October 1, 2019 Editor

Donald Trump Is Finished

Please click on audio of post. NOTE: only main text read; no links, text markings, images, videos, footnotes, etc. read aloud.

Sep 30, 2019

TD originals

Bill Blum

photo above: President Donald Trump, with Vice President Mike Pence at left, takes part in an Armed Forces event at Joint Base Myer-Henderson Hall, Va., on Monday. (Evan Vucci / AP)

WN: Of all the vile presidents I have lived through, Trump is clearly the worst: as I have many times said. He is the Ultimate Ugly American; Planet Enemy Number One; an Overweening Narcissist. (And I’m just warming up to a long list of similar epithets.) That the Evil Empire of the United States of America got what it deserved in the Walking Tragedy of a president is no consolation for the millions domestically and internationally who have suffered under him. And without doubt, millions more will continue to suffer under Pence once he takes over . . .

Still: what a welcome headline from a man who should know!  .  .  .

And while I’m suspicious of the “progressive left” as I am of the “alt-right,” I think the author makes sense in the final excerpt quoted below.

excerpts:

I’m not going to bury the lede: Donald John Trump, the 45th president of the United States, is going to be impeached. Not only that, but whether or not the GOP-controlled Senate convicts Trump of “high crimes and misdemeanors,” his presidency is drawing to a close. Unless a political deus ex machina comes to his rescue, he will not serve a second term.

Numerous actions and events have brought us to this impeachment precipice, virtually all of them initiated by Trump himself. He is the architect of his own demise, and there is no turning back.

The Undoing by Adam Zyglis

As of Saturday, some 225 members of the House of Representatives were on record endorsing an impeachment investigation. Their ranks included independent Justin Amash of Michigan and Republican Mark Amodei of Nevada. The last high-profile House Democratic holdout, Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii, announced her support Friday. The total will only expand in the coming weeks.

Trump, for his part, appears increasingly exhausted, paranoid and incoherent, not unlike Richard Nixon in the final stages of Watergate. The president has taken to Twitter even more than usual, spewing vitriol and blurting out threats of revenge against his many presumed enemies.

For those who are unfamiliar with the procedure or who could simply use a refresher, impeachment is the constitutional mechanism by which a president, vice president or “civil officer of the United States” can be accused of “treason, bribery or other high crimes and misdemeanors” and removed from office upon conviction.

The specific provisions governing the process can be found in Article 1, Section 2 and Article 2, Sections 3 and 4 of the Constitution, which define the respective powers of the legislative and executive branches of the federal government.

Together, the provisions establish a two-step process. As explained in a 2015 study, “Impeachment and Removal,” prepared by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service: “First, a simple majority of the House impeaches—or formally approves allegations of wrongdoing amounting to an impeachable offense, known as articles of impeachment. The articles of impeachment are then forwarded to the Senate where the second proceeding takes place: an impeachment trial. If the Senate, by vote of a two-thirds majority, convicts the official of the alleged offenses, the result is removal from office. …” [Emphasis in original]

The principal debate now among mainstream Democrats and progressives is no longer whether Trump should be impeached, but how extensive the articles drafted against him should be. Well before the Ukraine scandal erupted into public view last week courtesy of a whistleblower’s complaint, Trump was liable for a long laundry list of impeachable offenses. Among the many derelictions I have cited, Trump can credibly be accused of:

  • Committing campaign finance violations by paying hush money to two women with whom he allegedly had extramarital affairs, Karen McDougal and porn star Stormy Daniels;
  • Obstructing justice in connection with the investigation by special counsel Robert Mueller;
  • Defying congressional subpoenas;
  • Using the presidency for personal economic gain;
  • Abusing the pardon power to reward political allies;
  • Attacking the press and the judiciary;
  • Threatening to prosecute political opponents;
  • Abusing emergency powers to build his border wall;
  • Incarcerating undocumented immigrant children in concentration camps;
  • Attempting to strip millions of Americans of health insurance;
  • Promoting tax reform to benefit the super-rich;
  • Gutting environmental regulations and pulling out of the Paris climate accord;
  • Refusing to enforce the Voting Rights Act; and
  • Curbing the use of federal consent decrees to counter police misconduct.

To tell the story of Trump’s malfeasance and corruption, three articles of impeachment, the same number that forced Nixon from the Oval Office, should suffice:

  1. Abuse of power for Ukraine.
  2. Using the presidency for personal gain.
  3. Obstruction of justice for the Mueller investigation and the wholesale defiance of congressional subpoenas.

Democrats have little to fear from a Trump impeachment. The current situation is much more akin to 1974, which saw Nixon’s popularity steadily erode until his resignation, than 1999, which saw Bill Clinton’s popularity climb. A CBS News Poll released Sunday showed a whopping 55% of respondents favor the impeachment inquiry. A Quinnipiac University Poll survey released on Monday went beyond the inquiry, finding respondents evenly split, 47 percent to 47 percent, on whether they support impeaching President Trump and removing him from office, a 10-point swing in favor of impeachment over a five-day period.

As the congressional impeachment hearings move forward, public support can be expected to increase. Even if the Senate refuses to convict, Trump’s reelection prospects will be crippled, as Democrats will be able to target Trump and the GOP in the 2020 elections for betraying the Constitution.

For the progressive left, impeachment presents a rare opportunity to hold a tyrant to account, and to merge the impeachment issue with a broader agenda for genuine social and political change. While some progressives may balk at forging a tactical alliance with mainstream Democrats, the choice should be a no-brainer. The impeachment train has left the station. Either get on board and help steer, stand aside, or get run over.

Please click on: Trump Finished

  1. [1]Please look at several articles as well on American/Western will to world domination by clicking on "Selected Articles: Western Aggression Backed by Western Media”. The series of articles is introduced thus:
    The Western allies never run dry of resources to support their global war of terror and aggression, ostensibly an integral part of their foreign policy. They dynamically legislate laws lest the people awaken. They have the unbending support of the corporate media, which skilfully distorts reality. When will they ever back down from their destructive quest for colonies? Read our selection below.
  2. [2]It continued:
    ‘For seven months, Tiger Force soldiers moved across the Central Highlands, killing scores of unarmed civilians – in some cases torturing and mutilating them - in a spate of violence never revealed to the American public,’ the newspaper said, at other points describing the killing of hundreds of unarmed civilians. ‘Women and children were intentionally blown up in underground bunkers,’ The Blade said. ‘Elderly farmers were shot as they toiled in the fields. Prisoners were tortured and executed - their ears and scalps severed for souvenirs. One soldier kicked out the teeth of executed civilians for their gold fillings.”   The New York Times confirmed the claimed accuracy of the stories by contacting several of those interviewed.  It reported: “But they wanted to make another point: that Tiger Force had not been a ‘rogue’ unit. Its members had done only what they were told, and their superiors knew what they were doing. “Burning huts and villages, shooting civilians and throwing grenades into protective shelters were common tactics for American ground forces throughout Vietnam, they said. That contention is backed up by accounts of journalists, historians and disillusioned troops… ‘Vietnam was an atrocity from the get-go,’ [one veteran] said in a recent telephone interview. ‘It was that kind of war, a frontless war of great frustration. There were hundreds of My Lais. You got your card punched by the numbers of bodies you counted.’ Current likely Democratic Presidential candidate John Kerry was also quoted giving evidence before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee in 1971.  He reported that American soldiers in Vietnam had “raped, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country. Nicholas Turse [later author of: Kill Anything That Moves: The Real American War in Vietnam], a doctoral candidate at Columbia University, has been studying government archives and said they were filled with accounts of similar atrocities. ''I stumbled across the incidents The Blade reported,'' Mr. Turse said by telephone. ''I read through that case a year, year and a half ago, and it really didn't stand out. There was nothing that made it stand out from anything else. That's the scary thing. It was just one of hundreds.'' Yet there were few prosecutions.
  3. [3]Historian John Coatsworth in The Cambridge History of the Cold War noted:
    Between 1960, by which time the Soviets had dismantled Stalin's gulags, and the Soviet collapse in 1990, the numbers of political prisoners, torture victims, and executions of nonviolent political dissenters in Latin America vastly exceeded those of the Soviet Union and its East European satellites. In other words, from 1960 to 1990, the Soviet bloc as a whole was less repressive, measured in terms of human victims, than many individual Latin American countries [under direct sway of US Empire] ("The Cold War in Central America", pp. 216 - 221).
    What was true for Latin America was true for around the world: massive human rights abuses, assassinations, regime changes of democratically elected governments, etc., etc., etc. orchestrated by US Empire. Yet Americans invariably have wanted it both ways: to be seen as the exemplary "City on A Hill" that upholds universal human rights and democracy, while operating a brutal Empire directly contrary to all such elevated values, and a concomitant rapacious Empire market economy that takes no prisoners. This began of course even before the founding of the United States of America and continued apace, in its mass slaughter and dispossession of indigenous peoples, in its brutal system of slavery on which its obscene wealth in the textile industry in the first place was built. "The Land of the Free" conceit was a sustained con job on the part of America's leaders. It was also apotheosis of hypocrisy. American exceptionalism was/is true in one respect only: it was brutal like no other Empire in its eventual global reach.
  4. [5]
  5. [4] The highlighted article about renowned whistle-blower Daniel Ellsberg points to again what is utterly chilling, horror-filled, exponentially beyond immoral, American (hence the world's) reality: "Daniel Ellsberg: U.S. Military Planned First Strike On Every City In Russia and China … and Gave Many Low-Level Field Commanders the Power to Push the Button". [5]He has since written The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner. Of it we read:
    Shortlisted for the 2018 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction Finalist for the California Book Award in Nonfiction The San Francisco Chronicle's Best of 2017 List In These Times “Best Books of 2017” Huffington Post's Ten Excellent December Books List LitHub's “Five Books Making News This Week” From the legendary whistle-blower who revealed the Pentagon Papers, an eyewitness exposé of the dangers of America's Top Secret, seventy-year-long nuclear policy that continues to this day. Here, for the first time, former high-level defense analyst Daniel Ellsberg reveals his shocking firsthand account of America's nuclear program in the 1960s. From the remotest air bases in the Pacific Command, where he discovered that the authority to initiate use of nuclear weapons was widely delegated, to the secret plans for general nuclear war under Eisenhower, which, if executed, would cause the near-extinction of humanity, Ellsberg shows that the legacy of this most dangerous arms buildup in the history of civilization--and its proposed renewal under the Trump administration--threatens our very survival. No other insider with high-level access has written so candidly of the nuclear strategy of the late Eisenhower and early Kennedy years, and nothing has fundamentally changed since that era.
  6. [6]A classic instance of this aligning with "just war" is the United States' "war on drugs" as subset of "war on crime", while at the same time the CIA was a major worldwide drug dealer in league with other drug cartels -- all done to enhance American Empire during the Cold War -- and continues to the present. The four-part series mentioned below connects American Empire drug dealing to the current War on Terror, in particular in Afghanistan. This of course is colossal hypocrisy as well. Worse: the series posits American federal government administrations over many decades as the Ultimate Drug Cartel, with Blacks, Latinos, and generally the poor directly being knowingly poisoned en masse. Then they have been primary targets of the Drug Enforcement Agency, and thereby become victims of America's too often savage prison system that oppresses and brutalizes them all over again... See: "The War on Drugs Is a Failure, So [Attorney General] Jeff Sessions Is All for It". A citation from the article reads:
    In June [2017], the History Channel aired a four-part documentary series called America’s War on Drugs.” The series asserts that the war on drugs was actually a war of drugs—and that the CIA was essentially a partner in spreading drugs and drug use. The series follows how the U.S. intelligence agency, in an obsession with fighting communism, allied itself with U.S. organized crime and foreign drug traffickers and includes firsthand accounts from many involved. In an interview with Truthdig columnist Sonali Kolhatkar on her radio program “Rising Up With Sonali,” the series’ executive producer, Anthony Lappé, explains why the CIA got involved:
    It’s actually a pretty mind-blowing story when you look at the extent to which the CIA was involved with drug traffickers and drug trafficking throughout the Cold War. … If you look at Cold War policy against the Soviet Union, we were locked in a global battle for supremacy, where we have lots of proxy wars going on. … We needed to team up with local allies, and often the local allies we were teaming up with were people who had access to guns, who had access to underground networks, to help us fight the perceived threat of communism. There are actually a lot of similarities between what drug traffickers do and what the CIA does.
    Lappé elaborates by saying the hypocrisy of the war on drugs has been evident from the start: Secret CIA experiments with LSD helped fuel the counterculture movement, leading to President Richard Nixon’s crackdown and declaration of the war on drugs. The series also explores the CIA’s role in the rise of crack cocaine in poor black communities and a secret island “cocaine base.” In addition the documentary makes the connection between the war on drugs, the war on terror and the transformation of Afghanistan into a narco state and contends that American intervention in Mexico helped give clout to Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán and the super cartels, making it easier to send drugs across American borders. Watch Kolhatkar’s full interview with Lappé by clicking here. Please also see the now classic: The Politics of Heroin: CIA Complicity in the Global Drug Trade, by noted American historian Alfred McCoy. Of it we read:
    The first book to prove CIA and U.S. government complicity in global drug trafficking, The Politics of Heroin includes meticulous documentation of dishonesty and dirty dealings at the highest levels from the Cold War until today. Maintaining a global perspective, this groundbreaking study details the mechanics of drug trafficking in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and South and Central America. New chapters detail U.S. involvement in the narcotics trade in Afghanistan and Pakistan before and after the fall of the Taliban, and how U.S. drug policy in Central America and Colombia has increased the global supply of illicit drugs.
    To be noted as well is Johann Hari's Chasing The Scream, which tells the tragic tale of America's long-standing offensive against drugs, and the way to end such a war worldwide -- that several nations are successfully embracing.

Editor

Wayne Northey was Director of Man-to-Man/Woman-to-Woman – Restorative Christian Ministries (M2/W2) in British Columbia, Canada from 1998 to 2014, when he retired. He has been active in the criminal justice arena and a keen promoter of Restorative Justice since 1974. He has published widely on peacemaking and justice themes. You will find more about that on this website: a work in progress.

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