Still here after all these years

On the Record

I find myself increasingly spending my days avoiding hearing the news or watching it.

I also am spending less time reading the papers in the real world and on line. I now avoid going to their sites, or even sites with any news of any sort whatsoever-entertainment or otherwise.

It’s really hard to do I’ve described before. The urge to know what’s happening is sometimes overwhelming and I have to fight it tooth and nail-but I must do it to keep from getting angry with everyone and in real trouble.

When I do encounter someone who tells me to ‘get over it’, I react to it very forcefully and profanely. I’m tired of being polite to idiots and fools.

No, I’m not in denial, as much as my actions appear.

I’m in a constant silent seething rage.

You see, I was brought up to believe (wrongly, as it now appears) that our country and government are worthy institutions, full of well-meaning and intelligent people who work for the common good of this country.

That our elected officials are working for the will of the people and the noble goal of making us the best country in the world, shining in the darkness as a beacon of hope for others to emulate.

That we’re smart enough to avoid the past brutal lessons of the past-that we learned from other countries’ mistakes and our own.

What I’ve learned in the past 3 months is that this country is full of fools, charlatans, liars and traitors. That nothing I’ve ever believed in is correct or true.

And that I can’t do a damned thing about it, much as everyone says one individual can and must do.

I’ve seen my own US Senator endorse a well-known racist to become US Attorney General and proclaim “He is a different man now from the past”, when nothing of the sort has happened.

When the Republicans declare that all the nominees for the cabinet level appointments are perfectly fine without extreme vetting on their past financial and personal histories-just let them get to be appointed, ok? That it doesn’t matter that those nominees are loaded with conflicts of interest-not a problem. The laws are written for other people, you know.

That the Republicans will rewrite their own rules to allow it to happen without a fight-steamrolling all objections with “Oh, not a problem..” They even attempted to eliminate an office of ethics because obviously it wasn’t needed or wanted by them. Too much hard work to comply with basic human decency, apparently.

When the President-Elect blatantly lies repeatedly on every subject he ever discusses. That this same person is mentally, emotionally, and ethically unfit to serve as President, but nobody calls him out on those deficiencies. Nobody protests when his background as a failed businessman is so overwhelming that it demands closer attention to his conflicts of interest.

That he is actively breaking the laws on nepotism and emolution from the very start.

That we’re fast approaching the failed state status of a banana republic without a fight.

That nobody in public office is worthy of their job-that they all have spines of jelly fish, and the level of cowardice is just plain appalling when it comes to voting or acting for the better good of this country.

That apparently nobody gives a shit about any of it, including the media. They’re the first to normalize this state of insanity. They’re jumping on the bandwagon in droves, to drive up their revenues and readership.

No..I just learned that everything that I was taught from an early age is wrong..and that I am no longer just an American citizen, but an enemy of the state for objecting to all that is wrong in this country right now.

I’m told to move to another country, and to shut up about this state of affairs, that I don’t count any more, my vote was worthless, the election wasn’t rigged and the results weren’t tainted by interference from another country seeking to influence the election with their choice of president.

In the future, when history books are written about this election and the results, I’m afraid that the title will be: “The Big Fatal American Mistake”.

Because that is exactly what this entire time in our history is, without a doubt.

We’ll be paying for it for a very, very long time. We may never get over it, either. We’ll have a country named “The United States of America” but it won’t resemble anything the Founding Fathers framed in the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence.

We’re done as a noble exercise in democracy and idealism. We’ve given up without a fight.

God save the United States, because apparently that’s the only way this country will survive in any form.

I’d like to be proven wrong in that statement, just as I was proven wrong about the election-but I’ve learned to never assume belief is the same thing as reality.

Because the reality is that we’re just as stupid a country and people as any other, and we’re willing to sell it out for pennies on the dollar, to be led by a 5th grade bully with the mentality and speech of a common 2 bit hustler.

Some country this was, huh? Too bad we couldn’t keep it.

From Bad to Worse

Never in my life have I seen an election, president-elect and the results of ignorance laid out bare for all to see.

It’s a witches’ brew of incompetence, greed, fascism, venality and indifference to morality or decency.

It’s enough to cause utter and complete despair for a country.

No, it wasn’t bad enough that Donald Trump got elected-that one was a stunner. It wasn’t shameful enough that his legion of ‘low-education’ followers are one step away from parading with the sign saying “One True Believer”. It’s not demeaning enough that the president-elect has not stopped using Twitter to communicate his domestic policy before consulting the media.

It’s not horrible enough when you realize the quality of people he’s nominating to run our government-nearly all of whom have practically no government experience in the past. They were, for the most part, all big donors to his campaign. That was good enough for him to consider them capable-but not one of them are competent enough to have had jobs at Burger King in the past.

The real capping instance among many other provocations is the fact that it now appears that Russia deliberately assisted in getting this incompetent fraud and huckster elected. That should sound (and has in fact) huge bells of alarm all over the country, and in Washington.

We shouldn’t really be surprised. Trump did call out during the campaign for the Russians to come and hack us for those emails to Hillary Clinton. They did so with abandon. They did it to make sure he got elected, and to thank them for the favor, he has now nominated the CEO of Exxon-Mobil to be our Secretary of State.

How many ways can you say rigged? He was right-but for his side. It appears that he knew about it, was informed about it and encouraged it. Now he’s awarded the Russians for their loyalty with a man who’s a personal friend of Vladimir Putin as our chief foreign policy guy-and who also got a medal from the Russians for being so nice to them.

Where does this stop? It will not be undone by the votes of the Electors-nice magical thinking there, but that won’t do it. Nor will Congressional committees to investigate the hacking, unless it leads to actual legal charges. It won’t come from bashing him on Twitter. It won’t be because of editorials in the NY Times and the Washington Post.

It will have to be a groundswell of public outrage and an active bi-partisan effort to get him legally removed from office before he’s had a chance to damage it and our country forever.

It’s in the Constitution-several articles in that document address the problem of having a man so far removed from the abilities of being President to be legally severed from this position.

I suggest that the best and brightest legal minds begin by investigating the legal options to do it, and soon. It took over 3 years to remove Nixon from office, but that looks like peanuts in contrast to what Trump is capable of doing before he even takes the oath of office.

In short, we now have a President-elect who is so unfit and unqualified to hold this office that it demands that we not give him a chance to be in it for more than a few months-and we’d better start doing something about it now.

Because too much is wrong in having Donald Trump as President. It’s wrong in more ways than you can ever possibly imagine-and we’re going to pay a steep price for being such suckers that he must laugh every night when he goes to bed:

“Ha! Pulled another one over their heads! It’s nice to be President-elect!”

Let’s not let him have the last laugh.

That Dreadful Feeling

Have you ever had those days when everything you read makes you cringe or wonder what the hell is going on in this world?

Me, too.

I can’t stand to read the papers on-line any more, or even in the real world. I can’t watch the evening news without shutting it off after the headlines.

Now, this is very bad for me. I am a literal news-junkie. Love to hit every single important news site-the NY Times, Washington Post, even the smaller papers of the Portland Press Herald and the Lewiston Sun-Journal. Heck, I even read the Huffington Post, Daily Beast and Salon magazine.

Or I used to.

Seems though, now that I can’t stand to hit those links, because every time I do and read the headlines or the sub headlines, it makes my stomach turn and my fear factor go up a notch or two.

Ever since Donald Trump was elected President, the headlines have been full of the changes he’s making, and they’re all bad to read.

He’s bringing in people to run the government who aren’t fit to hold jobs at Burger King. He’s proposed so many drastic and bad things that if they are carried out, millions of people will suffer from them-among them, his own army of supporters.

Privatizing Medicare, Social Security, Medicaid, schools. Building walls and deporting millions of people. Telling everyone that if they burn flags they should be jailed or stripped of their citizenship. Nominating people to the DOJ who believe that anyone who isn’t white doesn’t deserve respect, or rights.

Nominating the same people who stole our money, our houses and trashed the entire economy for their own profit to run the Treasury Department. Hiring advisors who are white supremacists. Making the Secret Service pay for the privilege of protecting him in NY at our expense.

Cutting the funding for science, education, the EPA. Bringing back coal mines. Using public lands for gas and oil development. Appointing SC justices on the basis of scuttling rights to health care.

No, it’s not pleasant to read this, and it’s on a daily basis. Plus the fact that he does most major announcements on Twitter. Now, I ask you, is this a normal guy?

I know it isn’t. What he thinks, does and tweets is literally turning this country back to the 1900’s in a way that I’ve never seen before.

Where nobody is protected from the ravages of big corporations having their way to destroy our lives. Where everyone is a profit point, and can be bought for pennies on a dollar.

His proposed cabinet is full of millionaires, billionaires and petty thieves who are just in it for the glory and the money.

Just like him.

He’s not making America great again-or even draining the swamp. He’s doing exactly what he wants and that was to get as much out of it as possible without having been held to account.

The swamp is getting stocked with mean, hungry alligators.

The only people who are powerful enough to stop this guy are the most craven: the Congress.

The majority of whom are Republican and are very willing to lie down and let him step over them. They’re trampling over each other trying to accommodate him. They’re his major cheerleaders.

My question is: When does this nightmare train to hell stop?

Because it’s not stopping at the train station that reads “Welcome to America, land of opportunity”, but rather to the station where the sign reads, “Work makes you free.”

Guess I’ll just have to stop reading the papers and listening to the news for the next 4 years, because I feel that the world has just gone insane and we’re not only the audience but the victims of the worst political upheaval in our lifetimes.

That’s not a good feeling – it’s guaranteed to ruin your digestion, and life.

Great American Scandal

Just finished a book titled: “Great American Scandals“by Michael Farquhar. Fascinating reading about those nasty things that have gone on in this country since our founding.

It’s about the duels, betrayals, fights, crimes and other things that have taken place in the years past-mostly by our Founding Fathers and their friends-later other illustrious people, all in glorious and sordid detail.

There is an Appendix to this book and I read it quite thoroughly. It lists the details of every single President to George W. Bush and lists their singular historical distinction.

So it’s only missing Barack Obama and the new President-elect.

I can say with pretty good odds that Mr. Obama’s distinction is going to be that he is the first African-American president elected with the majority of the popular vote. Pretty obvious to anyone who knows American history.

The new President is going to have many distinctions in our history if placed into this context, and not many of them very good.

Here’s a partial list:

1. Richest man to ever win the Presidency, and not by his own hard work-Daddy was rich, too. Only President to have an active role in the company he owns and has declared he will not divest of before taking office.

2. Won with a historical lower percentage of the popular vote, but with an over-whelming Electoral College vote.

3. First President to have ever been married 3 times. Ronald Reagan was previously the only one to have been divorced.

4. First President to have been involved in an active fraud case at the time of his election, which he settled out of court. First to also have a huge number of active lawsuits pending before his taking office, and still not settled.

5. First President to have openly insulted large groups of the American people with impunity during the campaign without stint. Openly mocked many people, and never apologized to any of them.

6. First President to be aligned with the white nationalist groups and neo-Nazis. He also has never (to date) disavowed this. He’s also been noted as a sexual predator by numerous women.

I could go on and on about the list of dubious distinctions that Donald Trump will have with his taking the oath of office. I won’t bore you with the many other things that he is very well-known to have done, like the “Billy Bush” tapes. There are too many of them to list in one column.

Because of that, I will just ask this one question that puzzled me since Election night:

How the hell is this country going to survive being run by an erratic, ignorant racist without any shred of ethics or morals?

I don’t know, and that is why so many people are so very scared right now.

Because Donald Trump is completely the antithesis of the type of man who should be in the White House: a man with a clear past and a promising administration who will bring hope to all.

From what I can see, all we can look forward to is more scandal, slime and mud-slinging for the next 4 years, with untold damage to our country, reputation and lives.

Charles M. Blow did an outstanding column last week which resonated with millions of people, and I recommend it to you to read.

It’s worthy of a Pulitzer, and absolutely true-far better written than anything I could ever hope to write in my wildest dreams. Please read it if you haven’t, and re-read it if you have.

It’s the truth about our new President and it should be required reading for everyone who voted for him.

To that, I say, “Amen, brother!”.

Stand up and Fight

It is with a very sorrowful and heavy heart that I write this post.

It has become very obvious to me and millions of other people that we have a totally unfit and corrupt man who has been elected President of this country.

The past week has shown more than cursory evidence of this statement.

He has appointed a well-known racist to be his chief of staff-Steve Bannon.

He has nominated Jeff Sessions to be Attorney General of the country. If you don’t remember your history well, Sessions was shut down as a racist a very long time ago when undergoing confirmation for a lesser post. He was not confirmed.

Trump himself has refused to communicate fully with the State Department in dealing with foreign leaders, and has been in talks with his own company during the transition-a clear violation of federal rules regarding blind trusts.

He has refused to create one for his business.

He has proposed having his children be entrusted with security clearances to be able to discuss national security issues. Nepotism at its’ worst. His daughter was in the same conference as he was during the visit of the Japanese Prime Minister. She had no business being there.

He has taken to being on Twitter, decrying the cast of Hamilton’s plea to his VP after a performance.

He’s refused to openly disavow the racist rhetoric and attacks going on in his name.

He has welcomed with open arms some of the biggest Wall Street names, to be proposed as leaders in his administration. Those same people who drove the economy down to the ground during the last recession. They’re gleeful about the prospect of being able to fatten themselves at the trough, and in doing so, weaken or abolish most of the protections we have against their greed and criminal activity.

He settled the lawsuit regarding Trump University. Imagine-an incoming president having done that to avoid a fraud conviction.

This is only the beginning, too. He hasn’t even been inaugurated yet. 2 months to go, and we have a full-fledged disaster coming at us full-force.

We cannot let this happen.

We must take back this country from this man and his political and business cronies.

He will only destroy everything this country stands for.

I will be writing my Senators to urge them to take action in blocking any nominations of his appointees. The Senate is the blocking wall, and if they do not do something to stop this travesty of a future president, we are lost.

Please, sit down and write or call your Senators and Congresspeople. Urge them to listen to the American people in a plea for our country.

To do no less is to betray our country and our Constitution. It’s very apparent that unless we do, we will have a dictatorship which will drive a stake into it.

And he’s still not my president. Never will be.

He’s not anyone’s, nor should he be.

Suffering the Consequences

The election is over, and the people have spoken. Donald Trump is now the President-elect.

No, this is not the post where I publicly rescind everything I wrote in the past. I will never still accept him as my President, because he’s not. He does not represent me, or my views.

I did not vote for him, for many reasons-but I, like many others (better paid to do so, too) have pondered why this happened and what will happen now that he is.

He ran on the platform of populism-for the common person. Now, I can understand why people would vote for such a theme, and I don’t blame them at all. It’s very hard to turn down the prospect of jobs, and a better life.

What is not understandable is why anyone would want to not look past the facade and take a harder look at what he really is, and represents.

Let’s face it-he’s a billionaire (if what he states is the truth), and he’s never wanted for a damned thing in his life. Money, a job, a place to live, access to the best health care, etc.

He was born with the proverbial spoon in his mouth. He went to good schools, graduated from Wharton Business (which they would rather he not mention), and took over his father’s properties and empire when his father died.

In other words, he is the 1% that the 99% resent. He doesn’t know what suffering is. He doesn’t know what discrimination is. He’s never been turned down for a job, never had to suffer from hunger, or homelessness.

So he comes from the part of the planet which rules the other part. He is in essence the guy you hate because he cut in front of you if you’re in that line. He’s the one who always says “Do you know who I am?” to staff at a restaurant or hotel. He’s entitled to it, and he makes sure they know who he is. Hell, he usually owns the place, too.

That’s the important part that most don’t get. He is the last person to need this job of presiding over a country that has millions suffering from the consequences of the 1% running amok over us.

Then you will not misunderstand that when he is playing this role, he’s just playing himself, and the people around him will continue on their agendas, unhindered by the fact that he lied to everyone, including himself. They will continue their rule.

Nothing will change. Not the politics, the people or the mindset-‘we’re in charge of this country, you just stay out of our way-and thanks for your vote”.

And you’ll start to understand that this is not the right person to do this job. Hillary Clinton had tons of baggage, true-and while she wasn’t perfect, she at least had some knowledge of living on the edge. She knew the challenges facing most people.

Which is why we’re going to be living on the edge for quite some time to come.

The most unfit person running the country has no clue where this country came from and couldn’t really care less. All he wants is the publicity and ego stroking.

The rest of us have to suffer while he gets what he wants, and the 1% gets everything we’re denied.

Because the American Dream is just that-for only those who can afford it.

The rest of us are still going to suffer, no matter what the campaign slogans said.

Not My President

So this is the reality: Donald Trump is the POTUS.
Voted in by people who are pissed off at the establishment in Washington.

Let me get this right, though.

We now have a President who:

Was a draft dodger-4 times during the Vietnam War. He’s now the Commander in Chief.

Cheated on his taxes-he avoided paying taxes for 20 years. He hasn’t released his taxes yet, either.

Was a serial philanderer-with 2 of his 3 wives. 2 of whom were immigrants.

Has been seen quoted as saying “Grab them by the pussy. They’ll let you do anything when you’re a star.”

Has been accused of groping, and stalking women, by multiple women.

He’s being sued for fraud in Federal Court.

Has had more businesses fail through bankruptcy. First president to have done this.

Has openly insulted entire groups of people: Muslims, disabled people, women, Mexicans, Hispanics, veterans.

He believes that everyone not white should be deported.

He’s never held elected office in his life.

My question to everyone who voted for him is this:

What the hell were you thinking?

He is not fit to hold the office.
He isn’t about ‘change’. He’s about keeping his friends in high places there, keeping the rest of us in our places, like good little sheep.
He’s not about uniting this country. He’d like to throw out half of us because we’re not the right color, heritage or sex.

The only reason I can see why he won is simple:
He wasn’t a female.

Females are dangerous. Intelligent, thinking, hard-working females are to be feared.

Funny thing is, a whole shit load of Republican women voted for this travesty.


You want change?
You got it in spades-all the way back to the 1950’s of make believe happy families, which wasn’t true then, and never was.

Guess what?

We just lost 50 years of social progress because

God save the United States, because nobody else will.

We were sold out by idiots to be led by an idiot with the IQ and temperament of a 12 year old.

Thanks a lot, everyone.

It was a nice country while it lasted.

I will never accept him as my president, not now, or ever.

Shock and Shame

To be honest, I’m not really thinking very clearly right now. I’m in the place where shock has not yet taken hold, in despair, in that zone where even Rod Serling would be comfortable.

The Twilight Zone-only this time, it’s called the United States of America.

There really are no comforting words to be had. I can’t think of any, and I dare say most editorial writers feel the same. It’s just too bizarre and unreal to even begin to plumb the depths of this election.

As Paul Krugman wrote last night, we really didn’t know our fellow Americans-how they could possibly have voted for the most unfit person on the planet to be President.

Are they that unhinged, that uncomfortable when faced with the prospect of having had a woman become President? Are they that racist? Are they that xenophobic to buy into the idea that building a wall to keep out people is actually going to work?

I think they are. I think we have just done the ultimate sin, and the Founders of this country would hang their heads in shame if they knew what we’ve just done.

It’s enough to make you cry.

It’s enough to make people really despair over this country-and with damned good reason.

I know I am in that uncharted territory, where I am no longer considered a citizen of this country because I voted for a woman, and not someone who insults on Twitter.

All I can say is that I have never been this despondent. This is the result of having had our educational system dumbed down, our system of government paralyzed for the sake of political end-gaming.

I can no longer be proud to be an American and I am not.

So, for all of you who read my blog, I apologize for not being more witty, succinct or wise.

I can’t do that anymore, when faced with the fact that America is now a total laughingstock.

So I will go off and cry in the corner, and hope we can survive as a nation for 4 years of Donald Trump as President.

We are so screwed.

Real Americans

During this election season, Donald Trump has made his campaign one of ‘no immigrants allowed’.

He insults with impunity all those who have other colored skin than white, he criticizes those who have come here looking for opportunities as bums and welfare cheats.

He casts aspersions on the characters of those who have ‘other’ ethnicities for having had the audacity to be born that way.

Never mind that he’s the great grand-son of immigrants (who changed their name..), never mind that 2 of his wives were immigrants.

No-he’s talking about everyone else. Muslims, Hispanics, anyone who does not fit into his little parade of white privilege.

So he thinks that being an American should be decided on race and religion.

It happens that he’s American and proud of it. Descended from immigrants.

So am I, but don’t start frothing at the mouth-because my ancestry goes way back beyond his, and I can honestly claim that some of my ancestors built this country from the ground up.

But in doing so, I’m going to break a few myths along the way.

My great (x8) grandfather, Levi Durrer is described in one of our family histories as being a kind and good man. That he was born in Scotland and settled in Virginia.

That’s where the myth ends.

The truth of my ancestry is this:

Levi Durrer was not named that-he was born in Germany, and was either recruited, sold into service (impressed) or volunteered for the Hessian Army which was part of the English Army during the Revolutionary War.

I found this information about him from another family member on Ancestry’s boards:

“P.S. I, for one, don’t believe our family came from Scotland. In fact, I’m pretty sure of it. I believe we all descend from a Brunswick soldier, Levin Doerge, who fought for the British during the American Revolutionary War. He is then found as Johann Levien Doerrie(s), born in Arholzen, Braunschweig, Germany, 17 Oct 1749, to Peter Doerries and Anna Margaretha Fischer.”

Yes-you read that right. He fought for the other side.

He probably deserted his post. He most undoubtedly did, because he changed his name and started his family with a name that cannot possibly be genealogically correct. The famous Durer family (which includes Albrecht) had no relation to ours. So, my family made up a relationship. It’s been part of our lore forever. Enshrined in the DAR of Virginia. Sad to say, it’s not real or true.

There were no immigration laws back then. Half of our founders came from other countries-and some of them actually liked their place of birth.

We are all the sons and daughters of immigrants, who took land from the real natives, and then rewrote history to suit our needs.

So when you hear that phrase, “illegal immigrants” you must think back and wonder if you really can stand up and declare yourself a ‘real American’ when you deny the right for other people to come to our country to restart their lives.

Because we’re all descended from immigrants, in one form or another.

Including Donald Trump.

Denial is not a River

Ever since that infamous tape with Billy Bush and Donald Trump was released, there has been a literal firestorm of accusations, denials, and threats.

From women to Donald Trump and by him.

It’s all been very chaotic, but these facts seems to be very clear:
Donald Trump is a misogynist, sexual predator and a liar.

He’s been caught lying on tape, lying in public, and attacking women for having the audacity to call him out on his predatory ways. He defends his talk as “locker room banter”..which is in turn being vigorously denied by those who actually inhabit some locker rooms.

He has called these women various names, most of which are not very nice. He trashes their looks, their reputations, their lives and their stories.

Then he has the nerve to say that this was all orchestrated by the Democrats and especially Hillary Clinton, while during which time he has also brought up the subject of her husband’s marital infidelity-as if that were proof that she was part of this ‘conspiracy’ to defame him.

Of course the New York Times reported on it, and Trump then threatened (with his lawyer sending off a legal notice to the paper) to sue them for libel.

In a scathing and well-written response to Trump, the Times’ own lawyer said in so many words: “Bring it on!”
The letter noted that Trump himself brought this on-by being taped saying those horrific things, by acting exactly as he was described. That he trashed his own reputation all by himself. They were just reporting what happened.

Funny thing is, Trump’s lawyer and Trump himself have not replied to the letter, which was published in the Times the following week.

You’d think that if someone was so badly defamed and hurt by something like this, they’d be in court the next week screaming for blood.

Not now-because there is nothing to defend in this case. Trump is well aware (if his lawyer isn’t) that being a public figure does not allow for libel in most cases unless it is proven to be published with malicious intent with a clear disregard for the law.

So when you hear about another woman who steps out of the shadows to accuse Donald Trump of manhandling, groping or sexually harassing her, it would only be wise to remember that where there’s smoke there’s usually a fire nearby.

Because these women don’t come from nowhere-they’re telling the truth, and they’re telling us that Donald Trump in essence is a liar who thinks he can do anything he likes with women without consequences.

They don’t gain anything by doing this. They lose more than gain-and they are well-advised to do this kind of public statement only after they’re warned of the consequences.

They know they’ll never get a dime from Trump. What they do want, though is for the rest of the world to know what kind of man Donald Trump is.

Which is less than a man.

One who should never be in a position to govern anyone. He’s got enough on his plate doing so for himself, and badly.

Too bad he never did grow up out of 12th grade sexually or morally.

So to those women who are and were brave enough to come forward with their experiences, I say, “Thank you!”.

They saved the United States by telling the truth.

Donald Trump never has and never will.

Words have consequences.

One of which is never being President of the United States.