I couldn’t believe what Mica Brzezinski just said on MSNBC, Morning Joe. The particular question was about the perception of lies and strife coming out of the White House, and whether there’s precedent for that. She piped that there is, and referenced President Clinton’s lies about his affair (denials during Ken Star’s White Water investigation that ended up with Monica Lewinsky)
The surprise for me was the comparison of Clinton’s peccadilloes to what is so far known about Trump. (No need to bring out the reptiles and muck) Displaying her inability to consider frequency, gravity, and harm of the two situations, she scooped up what was easy and inapplicable.
Mika leaped over the more recent history -George Bush’s lies that led to the deaths of more than half a million people….and counting. Gave a pass to Ronald Reagan’s Iran-Contra-drugs-hostages that destabilized Central America. Still, on the go she ran past Richard Nixon’s Watergate crimes, too many to mention; L. B. Johnson’s three million dead by lies and you get the picture. No wonder some folks have negative opinions about America’s news-entertainment. Do some reading, Mica.
June 27, 2017
By Leyland A. King
Yesterday it was casually announced that NFL Hall of Famer, Deion Sanders, in partnership with the Koch brothers’ political arms, will create a funnel to provide economic and other assistance to the poor in Dallas, Texas. The photos linked to the release, together with crafted statements could not honey-me-up more. Who would find fault with charitable aid to the poor? But, before I open my door a crack to assure myself that the aid offered, is what it purports to be, particularly from the Kochs, I ought to examine the source of the help and motivations.
The channel selected is Deion Sanders’s company PrimeTime, an entertainment business. The company plans to ameliorate the poor’s lot by targeting what they believe are the five forces that are the roots of poverty:
1. Joblessness 2. Educational failure 3. Addiction 4. Personal debt
5. Breakdown of the family
That the five drivers identified are easily debunked, in terms of priorities and causation, are not the focus here. I am more concerned with the political issues and aspirations of the seemingly secretive donor group.
Were the Kochs and the wealthy interested in helping the jobless poor in Dallas, somewhere among the five drivers will have been minor criminal records being used to screen citizens out, making them unemployable for jobs the applicants are quite qualified to do. Mr. Sanders, being of the African American community ought to have included help to deal with a criminal justice system that is the number one contributor to family breakdown in the African American community. It also concerns me that the second stratagem is the Educational failure, rather than equality of educational opportunity. So sorry that I cannot address more, but with the drivers heading off the cliff, at least they were warned.
Even as the aid announcement was made, conservative Republicans in the Koch networks of political action were upset that the cuts to Medicaid are not deep enough. Tim Phillips, head of Americans for Prosperity chose his words carefully in describing the devastating eliminations as “nip and tuck” ACA (Obamacare) He deemed it “immoral” that the cuts are so slight. Strange, when considering that the same people that he and Sanders want to help are Medicaid recipients. But Sanders, who ran his Charter School into financial insolvency, found the words to laud the Kochs as a being a nice family whose only desire is to help the country. He opined that the Kochs are unfairly criticized. I can’t help a digression to the eleven African-American pastors that willingly appeared as a group at a Trump rally, for the single purpose of attesting that Trump is not racists. I wail.
Prime Prep, school co-founded by Deion Sanders, will surrender charter after lengthy battle
Mr. Sanders appears to be a person eager to do good and genuinely set out to help others –the poor and those not as gifted as himself. He should be commended for trying. He might be encouraged to get involved in projects that he has at least a rudimentary knowledge of their functioning. A big heart is not necessarily a success requisite. In fact, as the frog that agreed to help a stranded scorpion cross the river discovered, the big heart, if not discerning, can be a useful fool. The Kochs are interested in power, not people.
This is power harnessed and managed by the Koch brothers and should frighten every American. The Koch political network is among the most influential in the nation. They have bigger budgets and more staff than the entire GOP national networks. They are the dreaded cat that GOP mice in the three branches of government have to appease……always. Absolutely!
Five Myths About the Koch Brothers — And Why It Matters To Set Them Straight
With the objectives of appointing public officials from top to bottom in federal, state and municipal governments, and shaming influence on the Supreme Court, what would be there to stop them implementing any whim? On a larger scale, when the Citizens’ bread is on the end of a string held by the Kochs, are they not Kings? If they feed you, they own you and your family.
So, Deion Sanders and others who readily attribute benign purposes to the Kochs, know this -the Trojans were as comfortable as you when someone agreed it was a marvelous idea to have the Wooden Horse, brought in.
By Leyland A. King
September 30, 2017
After centuries of arduous work to give me freedom by saving me, I beg of you, please stop. Stop! The fact is, that when there is any rescuing done at all, the beneficiary is only you. For centuries! Heavenly inspired you were, to rescue my body from the heathens in Africa, but then changed the rules for my getting to heaven because you said, God wasn’t yet convinced and comfortable, with the question of whether (1) I had a soul, and (2) whether it was worth saving.
Of course, external threats and domestic terror are exempt. That is your cardinal role, and even that needs rethinking, but it’s not my focus here. What are my focus and consternation are the sweat and treasure needlessly expended; all devoted to saving me from myself. I never made an appeal and I am so aware that even if I did, the remedy you concoct is too often detrimental to me and those similarly entangled in the widening, strengthening, all-consuming tentacled web flung upon me. Me! A person whose greatest vice is a weekend gelato and a pecan sticky bun.
You, having made vices crimes, then turn around and tax the very crimes. I am flabbergasted that you could not have distinguished (1) the difference and (2) the consequence of the crimes you created. Oh, you’re regulating the vices to prevent their proliferation. Sorry. My friend, the neighborhood half-wit, alleged that you, the government, is a pimp. He said that a pimp is defined by what he does to enable and protect, paid sexual intercourse between consenting adults. You tax the product and intellectual property rights of sex workers and producers. Therefore, argues the half-wit, you are the worst kind of pimp and the best at managing it. When business is slow, you send goons to employ various means of entrapping and prosecuting the poor ones. The arrested pay for the meals the judge eats. That’s called fines. The legal name you created for it is “living off the earnings of prostitution.” That the government the kingpin pimp.
My friend, the neighborhood half-wit, alleged that you, the government, are a pimp. He said that a pimp is defined by what he does to enable and protect, paid sexual intercourse between consenting adults. You tax the product and intellectual property rights of sex workers and producers. Therefore, argues the half-wit, you are the worst kind of pimp and the best at managing it. When business is slow, you send goons to employ various means of entrapping and prosecuting the poor ones. The arrested pay for the meals the judge eats. That’s called fines. The legal name you created for it is “living off the earnings of prostitution.” That means the government the kingpin pimp.
Since our institutions follow your lead and adopt your worldview, one cannot be surprised that the sale of two cigarettes might be more important than human life; in your zeal to save me from myself, I pay the price through my insecurity and unceasing surveillance. Thus, I don’t have to actually engage marijuana crime, it is sufficient to lose my personal freedom or life because a cop claimed to have smelled marijuana as he passed my car. Demanding that my constitutional rights and God-given right to own and control my body are respected could bring upon me a swarm of law enforcers to kill me. I’m not exaggerating, this is what you have done to save me from potential vice. Me!
Look, gambling is a vice. You made it a crime. A few retirees and six slot machines in a storefront, bring hell’s coals delivered upon their grey heads, by men in blue carrying sticks, chemicals, and guns.
Secretive sex; having a beer all by myself on my own driveway, could get me manhandled and arrested if a paper bag didn’t cover the bottle. WTF! Masked, armed men could, without warning or warrant, break down my door and enter my home night or day and take me out or take me away, and take my money, because, I suppose, they think I am some sort of a combatant in the war on drugs. Their supposition based on your decision that I am a danger to myself and a corrupter of society. Me? All by myself.
The interesting thing is, despite my plea not to be saved from myself, you’re determined to do it anyway because you are obsessed with what you call law and order -what I hear as control and contain. We ask for jobs, you offer us 10,000 more cops. Four-fifths of them White males. Not to be outdone your Attorney General, who has panic attacks at the mere mention of the word marijuana, called for increased prison time; more private prison space; he decided, based only on his addled notion, that the police need to be unfettered from such inconsequential matters as arbitrary arrests, excessive detention, brutality, and murder. After all, they are there protecting me from social degeneration, that started the day the government decided that something ought to be done about enhancing the flow drugs into my body.
So, as state governments grapple with pressing matters like drug testing the poor, to catch one in a thousand; increasing the rate of executions lest the chemicals expire; to shoot death row criminals because it’s cheaper, unhindered by pesky constitutionality, trips back and forth to the Supreme Court or the innocence of the citizen who invariably, just happens to be poor.
So, my dear rulers, I’m not asking for much, just to be left alone to self-regulate me. Something that only you believe corporations are capable of. Why not me?
Today, like many Americans, I took the time to witness the Senate Intelligence Committee at work. They did their inquiry as best they could, under the circumstances.
By under the circumstances, I mean their determined efforts to get to the truth of various, potentially criminal matters affecting the Trump Administration, only to be stymied by the four public officers who answer to the American people. It was shameful and appalling. I hope that this nation is still able to function as under previous Administrations. They, the four witnesses appeared to me that they would be prepared to suffer anything to protect what they believe to be their personal property. The Senators be damned…and the citizens too. But of the four lame witnesses, I have to give special attention to Adm. Mike Rodgers, a rude and surly person by demeanor and arrogant with regard to personality. For a member of our armed services, he was the bad kid next door, that our parents warned us never to adapt his behavior. For junior members of the services, Admiral Rodgers is surely no officer and a gentleman.
We can look at what’s happening and fight over which party to blame and make comparisons to excuse wrongdoing for only so long. I believe that if our leaders don’t come to their senses, the fight may not be between Republicans and Democrats, there just might be the third faction.
“What a terrible era in which idiots govern the blind”
-William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar
I wonder if there is anything Trump’s followers are not willing to put up with. My own concerns are about what is evident today, and impending threats to our future.
When Trump’s surrogates express contempt for the constitution, the courts and media, yet Trump and GOP, by timidity or stupidity embraced those actions- be alarmed.
Said one: “Everyone……will have to bow down to Donald….the greatest man in the universe.”
Another surrogate: “The President’s authority will not be questioned.” That was yet another idiot needing a job. He was speaking about recent actions of the judiciary.
None, none of those chilling remarks, and other more subtle threats were ever discouraged by the President or the ruling Republican party. And by the way, don’t forget the recent photograph of Trump’s flag atop a military convoy traveling on the highway in the United States.
Yes, Trump doesn’t have much education, but neither did Idi Amin, former President of Uganda. The latter started with mass deportation of Asians. We know how it ended. Note that the slaughter and disappearances were indiscriminate. One can never be sufficiently loyal to any dictator. What is so special about America, that would lead anyone to believe that a fascist state of White Nationalism is so remote a possibility?
There is a conjecture I might make, based on a large number of American citizens encountered on social media defending each and every action of the Trump administration. Do those people truly believe that their race or party affiliation would make them safe? Stalin and Mao disproved that.
Nothing is sacrosanct and no one is safe in autocracies.
Today, I spent an inordinate amount of time reading posts on social media. Several hours reading just political commentary from my fellow citizens, not media articles, not blogs, only posts from John and Jane Doe.
I made sure that I was mentally prepared for every disconcerting thing, my rule: do not post or respond. I am now so glad to say that I survived but let me throw out some cautionary words. If you are prone to depression, do not visit; do not read content. It is that disappointing and utterly discouraging.
How did we get here, I thought just a little and informed myself that an accumulation of appalling choices by people who covet public office but have no business being there, stands out among the several that quickly come to mind. Individuals who are compelled to one of two parties for their own longevity of office, and because of that dependency, which they confuse with loyalty, brought us to a place not that different to communist parties. Graphically triangular, one would see the paramountcy of the party, survival of office, and somewhere fighting for the third tier comes the befuddled and abused citizenry.
It is now being claimed that all that bedevil us is race and that emerged from the legacy of slavery. But if I concede that explanation, then I correctly state as truth, what have leaders done to address the issue head on? Not by “a conversation about race,” but by being a beacon helping us through the darkness. But that is a false expectation. Why would they? They rely on racial animus to get elected. President George H.W Bush used mug shots of Willie Horton, to scare the bejeebers out of the White electorate; Nixon used crime and the Southern Strategy. Trump used Muslims and Mexicans. The malicious means justify the winning ends.
Seems to me that race was and continues to be a potent factor. It does not have to be that way. We have choices, we need leaders. Not instigators.