OK, friends, my last political post was published just before the November, 2016, election. At that time, I strongly supported the Trump - Pence Republican ticket. I have not changed my position or my support for the President. (I would, however, cancel the President's Twitter account, if I were able - but I digress.)
Where have I been for the past year? I am disgusted with the fake news generated by so-called news media against the President. I am alarmed at the resistance leveled at President Trump by the entrenched bureaucracy (referred to as the Deep State or the Swamp). I am disappointed by the Republican opposition to the President which threatens the opportunity that a Republican President and Republican Congress offered the party. And I do not like the opposition of the Republican Congress to the Trump agenda on which he ran and was elected. This included actions which these same Republicans had also campaigned on for years.
For the past year, the media and the Democrats (and some Republicans) have alleged that Trump colluded with the Russians to influence the results of the election. My opinion of this is that the basic premise seems inconsistent with history. Russia has a history with the Democratic party and with Hillary. I do not see why Russia would back Candidate Trump over Candidate Clinton. This issue is currently in the hands of a Special Counsel's investigation. Robert Mueller, former Director of the FBI, was appointed Special Counsel July 17, 2017.
So my period of silence is probably ending. The political process seems to have become corrupted to the extent that I cannot ignore. So watch this space - film at 11.
The past week has been interesting. First, it is alleged that the so-called Russian Dossier which was circulated to media outlets (and not covered because it could not be verified) and finally gained traction when FBI Director Comey briefed the President on the dossier and the document was published in its entirety by BuzzFeed.com in January, 2017. This dossier may have been the basis of federal intelligence and law enforcement investigations. Now it is alleged that the Clinton campaign and the DNC (Democratic National Committee) paid in excess of nine million dollars to pay for the creation of the Dossier, now alleged to be a work of creative fiction. The allegations go on to state this was a violation of campaign finance laws since the payments for the Dossier were made to a foreigner. The dossier was apparently written by a member (or former member) of MI-6, the British security service, and payments also were made to Russian governmental and intelligence officials with some of the payments possibly having been made by the FBI itself.
Second, it is alleged that the Russians bought an interest in a Canadian Company which secured contracts for approximately 20% of our strategic supply of Uranium - used in manufacturing weapons - raising questions about Mrs. Clinton, former President Obama, Robert Mueller (then Director of FBI) and former Director Comey of the FBI.
Third, Donna Brazile, Democratic political operative and appointed as acting Chair of the DNC released a chapter of her upcoming book (published by Politico) in which she claims that there were irregularities in the finances of the DNC and the Clinton campaign and she alleges that the DNC rigged the primary elections to give the nomination to Mrs. Clinton.
And finally, Special Counsel Mueller announced two sets of indictments (the first in his investigation) charging Paul Manafort and Rick Gates with a series of white-collar crimes. He also announced that George Papadopoulos, 29 years old, member of Trump's campaign had pleaded guilty to lying in an interview with FBI agents.
That is just part of the week's news. I am laying the groundwork to discuss each of these topics (and more) in future posts. There are few conclusions in this list - merely a recitation of allegations. We are at the beginning of these plot lines (or rabbit holes) and we may trace future revelations in these cases in future posts. I recognize that I have a conservative bias (and possibly a pro-Trump bias, which may be worse). I welcome dissenting comments provided that you come at me with facts. I am not interested in media talking points or name calling. Please maintain a civil tone and I will try to do the same.
Whatever the outcome, I believe that we are at a very low point in our country's history. I am not comparing our current situation to Valley Forge, the great depression, the Civil War or the two World Wars. But this is different. Our cultural values seem to be under attack from inside America as well as outside. There are sharp differences between our political parties. I was listening to an interview with Associate Justice Thomas of the Supreme Court this week. He spoke of our national motto, "E Pluribus Unum" (Latin for Out of many - one). Actually, this was considered to have been our motto from the inception of our country, although not codified by law. In 1956 Congress adopted "In God We Trust" as our new national motto. But Justice Thomas spoke of "E Pluribus Unum" stating that we seemed to have forgotten our "Unum" these days. I think he has a point. Americans have a unique culture that we seem to have forgotten. Our schools no longer teach our founding history or our American Values. Our current immigration policies no longer encourage assimilation. It is true that all of us are from immigrant stock. But we are missing in so many cases the final step that changed us from immigrants to Americans.
Maybe, when all is said and done (which normally means lots more gets said than done), we can learn from each other and accomplish something for the country this time. We can start with the tax bill.