Better Check Your Soul…

Donald Trump is a coward.  The self-described master of the deal is so hopeless at creating deals he has decided to kidnap children and hold them for ransom.  Only HE doesn’t do the kidnapping.  He orders his ICE minions to handle that part – the actual ‘doing’ part.  He can’t get his wall – the one he assured his acolytes Mexico would pay for; the one NO one is willing to pay for because it’s such a stupid concept.  So he does what he always does, blame someone else and throw a tantrum.  But it’s HIS policy and if you support him, you really need to think about it in stark terms:  He’s terrorizing children in an effort to blackmail Congress to give him his stupid wall and he blames Democrats for the policy HIS maladministration put into place.  For me, it creates the image of the abusive spouse who starts beating his woman (again) while intoning, “See what you make me do?”

I’ve heard the bullshit response: If you don’t want your children stolen, don’t bring them to this country illegally.  So much for your respect for the Constitution.  You see, the Constitution of the United States specifically bars cruel and unusual punishment.  It’s in the Eighth Amendment.  (Wait, there are Eight?  I thought it was just the Second…and the First when I want to talk…)  No, there are many more, in fact, but in the Eighth is says, “Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.”

Is stealing someone’s child a cruel and unusual punishment?  Well, no OTHER civilized country on the planet does it, so it seems pretty unusual.  If I have to try to convince you that tearing a child from his or her mother is cruel, you’ve got bigger problems than a political discussion is going to solve.  You may or may not see it, but this is a new low from a group who specializes in new lows.

It DOES relieve the pressure of ever having to pretend again that you give a flying fig about either the Constitution OR your Holy Bible.  You just want the political “win”.  I AM actually relieved that I no longer have to extend deference to your religious beliefs.  ‘Conservative’ and ‘Christian’ are mutually exclusive terms and the phrase ‘Conservative Christian’ is an oxymoron.  That evil imp, Jeff Sessions, tried to lure you in by quoting Romans.  But if you claim to be Christian, aren’t you supposed to try to follow the teachings of Jesus?  You know…the CHRIST?

Oh, and that’s an important little bit of information there, that “try to follow” bit.  Apparently, it’s understood that people will make mistakes, perhaps backslide from time to time.  But you’re putting WAY too much faith in that whole “Christians aren’t perfect, just forgiven” bumper sticker.  Turns out, there’s more to it than that.  In order to receive your forgiveness, you’re supposed to have a contrite heart.  That means you’re supposed to know you made a mistake and intend to NOT make that mistake again.  If you think you can break a commandment on Saturday and then ask forgiveness on Sunday all the while planning to break the same commandment on Monday, your forgiveness will NOT be forthcoming.  (Not my rule – it’s YOUR book…)

Okay, so Romans was written by Paul.  But you’re not ‘Paulines’, you’re (ostensibly) Christians.  DID your Christ ever say anything that may have touched on the subject?  Let’s look at Matthew, shall we?  Specifically, Matthew 25:31 through 46, written in red (meaning the words are directly attributable to Jesus).

He says that when He comes back He’ll separate the people into two groups as a Shepard separates sheep from goats.  He’ll set the sheep at His right hand but the goats at His left hand.  Then He’ll tell the group on His right that they get to go to Heaven because “I was hungry and you gave me food; I was thirsty and you gave me drink; I was a stranger and you took me in; I was naked and you clothed me; I was sick and you visited me; I was in prison and you came to me“.  The group was all, “We didn’t see you, when did we see You?”  Jesus said, “Assuredly I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these, My brethren, you did it to Me“.

Then, he’ll turn to the other group – a sea of MAGA hats (made in China).  He’ll say, “You feckless fucks are going straight to hell.”  (They had to clean it up for later publication, of course…)  What the book actually says is, “I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick or in prison and you did not visit Me.”  Of course, the whiners all demand to know when they saw Jesus and failed to minister to him and he answers, “Assuredly I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me“.

I’ll tell you this: If you continue to support Donald Trump after watching him terrorize children in an effort to blackmail Congress into doing his bidding, you’re following a deceiver and you’re doing it gleefully because you think you’re getting a political “win.”

But you’ve lost your soul…

Oh, look…1984…

I’m going to write stuff that regards the Andy Lopez shooting from a few years ago but my intent is NOT to re-open that debate.  My goal, here, is to highlight an example of a real-life 1984 moment.  My point is about the corruption of the “free press” and how that affects day to day living.  For any who may have missed the book, ‘1984’ is a future dystopian novel written by George Orwell.  The protagonist in the book is a guy named Winston Smith whose job is to re-write – that is, “fix” – archived news stories that no longer support the current government orthodoxy.

Andy Lopez was a 13 year old boy who was walking down the street in Santa Rosa, California with a toy gun that looked real when he was shot dead by a Sheriff’s Deputy named Gelhaus.  Originally, I thought Deputy Gelhaus must have been alone in the cruiser but it turned out that Gelhaus was the passenger and the driver was another deputy named Schemmel.  Deputy Schemmel was an experienced deputy but new to the Sonoma county Sheriff’s Office, so Deputy Gelhaus was showing him some of the areas he was going to need to know.

When I found out there were TWO deputies on the scene at the time of the incident, a question popped into my mind: why did Deputy Gelhaus empty his service weapon into the kid while Deputy Schemmel never fired a shot?  It’s not an unreasonable question.  It became my focus because, to me, it was critical in the question of whether Deputy Gelhaus had acted properly or not.  So, I waited and watched for the answer.  I got it, too.

The Santa Rosa Police Department conducted the investigation into the shooting.  At the conclusion of their investigation, a Lt Henry of the SRPD did a press conference to disclose the findings.  A reporter asked the question I had asked, why one shot and the other didn’t.  The answer was that Deputy Schemmel was still maneuvering the car into the “ready position” and by the time he stopped the car, the threat had been “neutralized.”  It’s a key detail.

Cops have a way of protecting themselves in these situations.  It’s called the “ready position.”  They park the car, open the doors, then crouch down behind them, using the door as a shield and the gap between the car frame and the door frame to shoot through should shooting become necessary.  The day after the shooting, the local paper, ‘The Press Democrat’, ran a photo of the two officers in the ready position.

But Lt. Henry reported that Deputy Schemmel was still parking the car while Deputy Gelhaus was “neutralizing the threat.”  Whoops.  How could Deputy Gelhaus have fired from the ready position if the car was still moving?  THAT meant Deputy Gelhaus had left the support of his partner and the security of his cruiser and put himself in a position where he might very well have felt “vulnerable.”  But, in turn, THAT meant that Andy Lopez died as a result of poor police procedure.

It has come up again because now, the pseudo-Supreme Court is being asked to shield the deputy that did the shooting from lawsuits and the story that reported the information said the deputies had taken the ready position and THEN confronted the young Andy.  Because it had been a focus of particular interest to me, I knew that was wrong.  I started looking for the contemporaneous news stories that had reported that Deputy Gelhaus had left the vehicle before it was parked.

I couldn’t find them.  They’re just…gone…

I DID find the official DA Report that supported the story that the Deputies had taken the ready position before confronting Andy.  I found other newspaper accounts that said the same thing.  Frustrated (and, frankly, a little scared), I kept digging.  All I could find said the same thing.  Then, I stumbled on this story in the Press Democrat.  The story, itself, was about a witness tho gave information that conflicted with most other eye-witness reports but it contained this: “The two deputies have said they spotted him from their patrol car and pulled up behind him. Gelhaus said he got out of the car, drew his gun and ordered Lopez to drop the rifle while Schemmel parked the car.” (Emphasis added.)

It seems Winston missed one.

Deputy Schemmel was still parking the car while Deputy Gelhaus was “neutralizing the threat” but that story highlights possible poor procedure – so the story has been changed.  Even if the original report had been wrong, good journalism says you don’t pull the story.  You correct the original and report the correction.  I’ll tell you this: I know that District Attorneys cover for cops all the time.  It’s part of the job, really.  But when the press does it too?  That’s ‘1984’ territory…

A Thought From 2004…

I used to write a different blog called ‘Doc Harmony.’  I was reviewing the archives, looking for something else entirely, when I came across this bit I wrote in 2004.  That’s 14 years ago!  I’ve taken the liberty of correcting a couple of spelling errors but other than that, it’s exactly as originally presented…

11/25/2004 Archived Entry: “I’ve been thinking…”

I’m a big proponent of the adage that actions speak louder than words. I’ve been wondering why so many “Joe Six-packs” around the country can come up with effective strategies the Dems could take to offset the actions of the GOP yet the “leaders” of the Democrats never seem to do anything. Well, anything effective, anyway.

Apply the adage. Actions speak louder than words. If the Dems aren’t doing anything to stop the GOP, they must not want to do anything to stop the GOP, right? The “loyal opposition” seems to be too focused on “loyal” and not focused enough on “opposition”.

Just using the “smell test”, I’m starting to think the Dems are “in on it” with the GOP and it’s We The People who are left to suffer. (After all, none of the “representative” Dems are doing any too badly themselves.)

History shows how this plays out and it shows us over and over and over again. The rulers and the wealthy with continue to oppress the “lower” classes, they’ll eventually overreach, the “lower” classes will finally have had enough, the revolution will come, and the current “ruling class” will get their heads lopped off in a public forum someplace. Much ugliness and bloodshed.

So why not just skip all the interim difficulties and start lopping off rich people’s heads today?

Just a thought…

Important Note: I do not seriously advocate violence of any kind…

Rights…and Wrongs…

Well, the pseudo-Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the religious guy who won’t bake a cake for the gay couple.  The first thing I’d like to say is that, mostly, I think it’s a stupid argument.  If I was looking for a special cake for my special day, I most certainly wouldn’t want someone to make it who didn’t want to regardless of their reasons.  Having said that, though, I think the court – as usual, ever since it got fraudulently packed with conservatives – is wrong.

How would the court have ruled if the couple had been male and female – but black – and the baker refused because his “religious beliefs” are based in KKK interpretations of the Bible?  We already know the answer to that question.  Think lunch counters and ‘separate but equal’, which was certainly NOT equal.  That got struck down by the high court.  You can’t discriminate against a person because of the color of their skin.  It’s a natural occurrence.  People have no choice…

But there are a LOT of folks out there who have decided that being gay IS a “choice.”  If it’s a choice, then it can be a sin, right?  AND…one can “balance” one person’s choice against another person’s choice.  But gay isn’t a choice.  It’s just a thing some people are in exactly the same way heterosexual is just a thing some people are.  You know what ISN’T a natural occurrence?  Religion.

If a person isn’t taught – at a VERY young age – to think wrong (by which I mean “religiously”) they simply won’t buy the story.  The couple just wanted a cake.  The baker made the choice to be religious.  For the SCOTUS to find for the baker, even narrowly, they had to decide that gay IS a choice just like religion.  They were wrong…

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CAN Trump pardon himself?  I say no.  People keep saying “read the Constitution.”  Okay.  It says, “…he shall have Power to Grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences (sic) against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment.”  See that “except in Cases of Impeachment” part?  To me, that means if he has committed a crime for which he might be impeached, he can’t pardon himself until the impeachment issue has been settled.  It’s actually pretty straightforward – unless you don’t WANT it to be.  One can pretend it’s all so murky and unclear – but they’re just pretending…

I’ll tell you this: there are no two ways about it, if you support the idea that the President can pardon himself no matter what, you support monarchy (or, perhaps, a dictatorship) but NOT a constitutional republic…

Rising Tides…

I recently saw a post in social media from a conservative who asked what it is about the saying ‘A rising tide lifts all boats’ liberals don’t understand.  He was saying this in support of our current economic system of giving all the money to the richest people and hoping that some of it “trickles down” to the rest of us.

It’s notable that, outside of the conservative bubble, ‘A rising tide lifts all boats’ is most commonly associated with John F. Kennedy.  (Conservatives, you won’t be surprised, think it was Ronald Reagan…)  In fairness, the Kennedy campaign lifted it from a local municipality in New England, if I remember correctly, but Kennedy used it early and often and it kind of became “his.”

I don’t much object to the idea that conservative acolytes have tried to abscond with the phrase as one of their own – it’s what they do.  I AM bothered by the idea that in doing so, they’ve distorted it’s meaning.  They’re using it to defend the sham called ‘Supply Side Economics’ (aka, “trickle down” or “voodoo” economics).  But all you’ve got to do is think about the phrase.  Apply it.  Create a sort of mental picture of a rising tide and exactly HOW it might lift all boats.

If the tide comes in gently, from the bottom up, well, sure, the boats begin to rise with it.  A “tide” trying to lift boats from the top down?  That’s called a Tsunami.  Tsunamis swamp ALL boats.  The ONLY way the rising tide lifts boats is from the bottom up.

That is, of course, unless some asshole is standing on the deck of his grand-daddy’s yacht shooting holes in people’s dinghies…

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Speaking of asshole rich people, the NFL has decided that forcing their players into patriotic displays and squelching their First Amendment rights is probably the way to go.  The NFL says they don’t want the players “disrespecting the flag” and/or insulting the military.

I served.  I’ve noticed that, often, the people who scream about disrespecting the military managed to avoid participating in the military themselves – the brave “other priority” crowd.  Mostly, people who actually served understand that protecting people’s First Amendment rights was part of the job.

I suspect the true basis of the NFL’s objection is the millions of dollars the military pays to the NFL for their faux public displays of patriotism.  Never forget: at all times in this once-great nation these days, it’s only and always about the money.

Now…get out there and take advantage of those awesome, respectful Memorial Day Sales…

Connecting…

I used to watch a television show hosted by a guy named James Burke called ‘Connections.’  Great show.  It’s a bit dated, now, but still highly entertaining.  Basically, he shows how one thing led to another, sometimes intentionally, sometimes, not so much.  He kind of infected my brain.  I like looking for connections, these days.  I stumbled upon one the other day.  My connection?  How the Iran/Iraq war of the 1980’s led directly to the September 11, 2001 attacks in New York City.

Mr. Burke does his connections in a very entertaining way.  This one is presented in what might be called a more…matter-of-fact style but it’s really quite simple.

September, 1980 – July, 1988: Iran and Iraq fight a war that leaves both countries treasuries depleted.
August 2, 1990: After receiving “permission” from the US, Iraq invades Kuwait.
August 3, 1990: Saudi Arabia objects to Iraq’s invasion
1990: Osama Bin Laden offers to send his “Afghan Arabs” to defend the Saudi border from Iraqi incursion. The Saudi royal family spurns the offer and turns, instead to “infidel” Americans for assistance, enraging Bin Laden.
August 8, 1990: The US begins massing troops on the Saudi Arabian border and tells Saddam to back out of Kuwait.
January, 1991: The US military pushes Saddam out of Kuwait. The base the US built in Saudi Arabia for 41’s invasion, Prince Sultan Air Base, remains intact and in use.  Bin Laden considers the presence of Americans on holy soil an insult to Islam.
September 11, 2001: Al Qaeda initiates the plan to use airliners to crash into the Pentagon and the WTC – and the towers come down.

The thing that gets me is that at any point, the trajectory of events might have been changed.  Kuwait might have been better about their OPEC obligations.  The US might have discouraged Saddam Hussein from invading Kuwait.  The Saudi’s might have taken advantage of Bin Laden’s offer.  There are, of course, many more pieces to the puzzle.  I’ve only highlighted six of them above.  But…just to be thorough, the entire chain of events, large and small, are detailed below, if you’re interested.  (If not, you’ve seen the highlights…)

September, 1980 – July, 1988: Iran and Iraq fight a war that leaves both countries treasuries depleted. US arms manufacturers (among others) supply weapons to both sides.
1988: Osama Bin Laden forms Al Qaeda (‘The Base’).
1989: The Soviet Union withdraws from Afghanistan. Bin Laden also leaves Afghanistan and returns to Saudi Arabia.
July, 1990: Saddam Hussein complains that Kuwait is slant-drilling into a shared oil field and exceeding it’s OPEC quota, depressing world oil prices and hurting Iraq which needs the revenue to recover from it’s war with Iran. Saddam decides to invade Kuwait.
July 25, 1990: Saddam asks April Glaspie, the American Ambassador to Iraq, if the US would have any objections to such an invasion. Glaspie replies, “We have no opinion on your Arab – Arab conflicts, such as your dispute with Kuwait. Secretary (of State James) Baker has directed me to emphasize the instruction, first given to Iraq in the 1960’s, that the Kuwait issue is not associated with America…”
August 2, 1990: After receiving “permission” from the US, Iraq invades Kuwait.
August 3, 1990: Saudi Arabia objects to Iraq’s invasion claiming incursions into Saudi Arabia. Iraq insists the incursion was an error.
1990: Osama Bin Laden offers to send his “Afghan Arabs” to defend the Saudi border from Iraqi incursion. The Saudi royal family spurns the offer and turns, instead to “infidel” Americans for assistance, enraging Bin Laden.
August 6, 1990: The UN imposes sanctions on Iraq.
August 8, 1990: The US begins massing troops on the Saudi Arabian border and tells Saddam to back out of Kuwait. Saddam stays in Kuwait despite a UN order to leave.
January, 1991: The US military pushes Saddam out of Kuwait. On the day the operation is launched, it’s called ‘Operation Iraqi Liberation’. People opposed to the action immediately jump on the fact that the acronym is ‘O.I.L’. The name is quickly changed to Operation Iraqi Freedom. The base the US built in Saudi Arabia for 41’s invasion, Prince Sultan Air Base, remains intact and in use. The base operates under US standards, meaning, in part, that American women are in Saudi Arabia and allowed to visit surrounding areas without head coverings – a sin in Saudi Arabia. Bin Laden considers the presence of Americans on holy soil an insult to Islam.
April 3, 1991 – The UN passes Security Council Resolution 687 setting the terms for the cease fire in Iraq and establishing the international weapons inspection team known as UNSCOM.
1991 – 1998: UNSCOM encounters various difficulties. Iraq is not fully cooperative.
December 29, 1992: Al Qaeda makes it’s first attack, a hotel bombing in Aden Yemen. The hotel was bombed because American troops had been stationed there. The troops had already left and no Americans were injured in the blast.
February 26, 1993: Several middle eastern men try to blow up the World Trade Center using a van full of explosives in an underground parking garage. The plan is to topple one tower into the other. The first tower fails to fall. Ramzi Yousef is called the mastermind of the attack. He received financing for the operation from his uncle, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed. Yousef and Mohammed had envisioned a larger plot, later known as the Bojinka Plot that involved, among other things, hijacking an aircraft and using it as a missile to attack CIA headquarters. Osama Bin Laden is not implicated in this attack, though Yousef had trained in Al Qaeda camps.
1996: Khalid Sheikh Mohammed takes the plan to use airliners to attack America to Osama Bin Laden.
1997: Osama Bin Laden claims he never knew Ramzi Yousef but confirms he knew his uncle Khalid Sheikh Mohammed.
November, 1997: Iraq charges that US spies on the UN team are planting bugs and expels all American weapons inspectors. Iraq says they will accept non-US inspectors and continue to cooperate with UNSCOM.
1998: UNSCOM is withdrawn at the request of the United States in preparation for Operation Desert Fox, a joint, 4-day bombing mission carried out by US and the United Kingdom. The justification for the strikes was Iraq’s failure to comply with UN resolutions despite UNSCOM’S own estimate that 90 – 95% of Iraqi WMD’s had been destroyed.
1998 – 2002: No weapons inspectors in Iraq.
January, 1999: US admits using spies on weapons inspection teams to plant surveillance devices. (New York Times.)
October, 2000: Saddam realizes he’s been betrayed by the US. He decides to create an oil market that trades in Euros. (The US created the world oil market and requires all players to use US dollars…) The world laughs at Saddam because the Euro isn’t as strong as the dollar and his new market isn’t very popular.
September 11, 2001: Al Qaeda initiates the plan to use airliners to crash into the Pentagon and the WTC – and the towers come down.
October 7, 2001: Bush 43 invades Afghanistan, ostensibly because Bin Laden might be there. He isn’t.
September, 2002: In a letter to Hans Blix, Saddam Hussein invites UN weapons inspectors back into Iraq to “remove any doubts Iraq still possesses weapons of mass destruction.”
November 2002: Weapons inspectors (now known as UNMOVIC) return to Iraq.
February, 2003: The Euro strengthens against the dollar and Saddam’s oil exchange is less funny to the world – certainly to the US.
February 5, 2003 – Colin Powell appears before the UN. He presents some scary drawings and threatening imaginings that Iraq might, maybe, perhaps still has. None of them are correct.
February 14, 2003 – Hans Blix, UN Chief Weapons Inspector appears before the UN along with Mohamed ElBaradei, the Director General of the International Atomic Energy Agency. Blix refutes most of Powell’s unfounded assertions and claims the only remaining violation is in a missile that can fly farther than it’s supposed to if it catches a good tailwind. The missiles are being dismantled. ElBaradei disputes Powell’s claim that Iraq still has a nuclear weapons program.
March 18, 2003: The US invades Iraq anyway.
April 30, 2003: Bush 43 pulls most American troops from Saudi Arabia – a key demand of Osama Bin Laden. This move ends the threat from Osama over the “insult to Islam” of having Americans on holy Islamic soil.
June, 2003: The Iraq oil exchange that operated using Euros is shut down. Iraqi oil returns to being traded in dollars.
May, 23, 2003: Bush 43 disbands Iraq’s army but doesn’t take any of their weapons. Out of work and cast-out from society, the fired soldiers become rebels, many of whom become major contributors to ISIS.
December 30, 2006: The US brutally “executes” Saddam Hussein.
2009: Barrack Obama is given the Nobel Peace Prize in the hopes that he’ll do something to create peace in the Middle east. He doesn’t. The “end date” comes on George’s Wars but Obama manages to keep both of them going in one form or another in thrall to the military/industrial complex. As of this writing (May, 2018), the death and destruction initiated by Bush 43 and that Dick Cheney continues…
May 2, 2011: Osama is killed by Obama. Evidence indicates Osama had been living in Pakistan this whole time…

As a bonus, if you look at the entry for October, 2000 you’ll see the REAL reason the US invaded Iraq: the oil trade…

Let the World Ignore Him…

Image: BELGIUM-NATO-DEFENCE-POLITICS-DIPLOMACY-MEETINGI shouldn’t be, I know, but I’m always surprised whenever I rediscover there are people out there who don’t seem aware that Fox “News” is a political propaganda machine.  It’s not a credible news outlet, despite it’s misleading name.  It’s just an attack machine aimed at any individual considered an enemy by whomever is running the show that day.  Barack Obama was a favorite.  If he said “up”, Fox “News” said “down.”  Simple.  Always oppose.  It’s just what attack news is all about and always has been.

You may not be aware that when this country was born, well-positioned people sponsored entire newspapers to be their voice to the populace, specifically creating papers run by editors loyal to whatever cause the sponsor was promoting at the time.  In that same tradition, Fox “News” is set up by rich people to benefit rich people.  They’ve taken advantage of a certain mindset in this once-great nation and those minions keep Fox going by parroting whatever they hear on ‘Fox and Friends’ or Hannity.

Mostly, the adherents of Fox are old.  Really old.  Scared of dying, they become frightened of everything else, too, and Fox is there to make sure the fears seem real and justified.  It’s actually unkind.  These people don’t think well anymore.  Fox “News” is terrorizing old people and weak thinkers to further their own political agenda and they do so with great effect.  And now, we’ve got a group of those gullible, weak-thinkers in the White House…

I don’t know exactly how long Trump has been a Fox viewer but I’d guess it goes all the way back to when his brain first calcified.  The self-described master of the Art of the Deal – which, apparently, is NEVER honor an agreement – doesn’t seem to understand that Fox “News” doesn’t know – or even care – if what they say is true.  “True” isn’t relevant.  Only attack is relevant.  As such, they attacked everything the Obama administration did, good and bad.  But Trump, apparently, never figured out that it’s just a ploy so, like most Fox viewers, he actually believes the crap they spew.

When the world made an agreement with Iran, Fox trashed the deal.  Sure, they had to make up details in order to attack it but they’re always happy to make things up over at Fox and so…attack they did.  Not because it was a bad deal.  Fox trashed it because Obama was in office when it was finalized.  That’s it.  It was the attack message of the day: Obama = bad.

So, naturally, our National Embarrassment has used faulty information to make actual, real-life decisions about the world at large, including Iran.  Trump just did what Trump does: pull out of an agreement that has already been made and start agitating for “a better deal.”  Was the Iran agreement the very best deal in the history of deals?  Probably not.  Was it the complete and utter failure Fox told Trump it was?  Not in the least.

Smart people, so-called “intellectual elites” in the Fox crowd, tried to stop him.  Emmanuel Macron came from France to try to stop him from pulling out.  Angela Merkle came from Germany to try to stop him.  Intelligence agencies from around the world insisted the deal was working as planned.  But Macron and Merkle – people who DO know what they’re talking about – don’t hold the same sway with the dotard as Fox and Friends – people who clearly DON’T know what they’re talking about.  So, Trump pulled out of the deal, anyway.

At first, I was a little concerned.  Outside of Fox “News” and Trump’s calcified brain, everybody knows that ending the deal is setting Iran on the path to nuclear weapons right away.  But, as is the case with everything regarding this maladministration, one doesn’t jump right in and start making predictions.  It’s better to wait a day or two, think about things; watch things unfold a bit.  I pretty quickly realized that the rest of the world knows that Trump is untrustworthy, dishonorable, and just plain fucking dumb…um…not at his intellectual best.  So the rest of the world has put the US on hold, as they should have done.  They’ll get back to us just as soon as we solve our problem.  In the meantime, the world is moving forward without us.

That thought gave me comfort.  Sure Trump can be counted upon to do the wrong thing, make the wrong move.  But the rest of the world doesn’t have to pull out just because Trump did.  I’m guessing that even as Donnie was holding up his paper to demonstrate that he can still write his name, the rest of the world was on the phone to Iran reassuring them that they’ll stay in the deal.  Sanctions, for example, don’t have much effect if the rest of the world won’t honor them and I’m hoping the rest of the world won’t honor them.  (And, yes, that is what it has come to: most Americans hoping the rest of the world can hold out against America!  Thanks, Don…)

Then I see this headline in the Guardian:  US threatens European companies with sanctions after Iran deal pullout.  Think about that for a second.  Trump made the wrong move for the wrong reasons.  Now he’s threatening US allies if they don’t make the wrong move with him.  You might want to read that again: Trump is threatening US allies if they don’t make the wrong move with him.  Our allies…

I’ll tell you this: I hope the world defies Trump despite the threats.  They just need to hold out for a little while.  We’ll correct our error and dump Trump as soon as we can.  Then we’ll be able to rejoin the world community as grownups, not petulant brats…