Tag Archives: POTUS

When do we demand POTUS to quit?

If we’re going to demand the resignation of a U.S. senator for sexual misconduct allegations …

And demand that a candidate for the Senate step aside because of accusations that he molested underage girls …

And applaud the firing of TV news hosts, anchors and commentators because they, too, faced accusations of sexual misconduct …

When are we going to make these demands of the president of the United States of America? I mean, the head of state of the world’s greatest nation has been heard on tape admitting to groping women, kissing them against their will. He’s actually boasted about barging in on half-dressed beauty pageant contestants’ dressing room.

And the president also has been accused by women of groping them, forcing himself on them. His reaction? He calls them “liars” and once threatened to sue them. He hasn’t followed through on his threat.

When do we start making demands on the Big Man, whose list of sexual transgressions are well-documented. He’s actually admitted to them. Yet we’re giving this guy a pass while dropping the hammer on other powerful men in government, the media and in the entertainment industry?

I’ve noted already how politics often results in punishment that can be called unfair. We concede “it’s just politics.”

When do we call it what it is: blatant hypocrisy?

Time for Conyers to call it a career?

OK. I’ll answer the question posed in the headline over this blog post.

Yes, I believe it’s time for U.S. Rep. John Conyers to call it quits. It’s time for the congressman who has served for more than five decades in the House of Representatives to return to civilian life.

Conyers, a Democrat, is facing mounting pressure from the Congressional Black Caucus to resign in the wake of a third woman who’s accused Conyers of making improper sexual advances.

Conyers is damaged

Conyers already has acknowledged paying one woman a $27,000 settlement, even while denying he did anything wrong.

He is the longest-serving member of the House. He’s been called an “icon” by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, who said he is entitled to “due process.”

Well, I’m not sure how you define due process in a political climate. Conyers has not been charged with a crime. He has now become a major “distraction” for legislative colleagues.

This sexual abuse network of scandals is reaching across party lines. It is insidious and it is inflicting serious — and potentially grievous — damage in the halls of government. Members of both congressional chambers stand accused of extreme misbehavior toward women; indeed, similar allegations have soiled the president of the United States.

A Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate also is facing calls from within his own party to pull out of his contest.

Conyers already has stepped down from his leadership post on the House Judiciary Committee. I am afraid that isn’t enough.

Rep. Conyers’s career is sullied and soiled by the accusations of sexual harassment.

It’s over. Or at least it should be.

Trump shrinks a big office

I wish I had thought of this, but since I didn’t I’ll deliver appropriate credit to the source of this piece of wisdom.

It comes from U.S. Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Calif., who fired off this tweet today about Donald J. Trump Sr.:

“The President would have left American students in a foreign jail because their families didn’t lavish sufficient praise on him. How can someone in such a big office be so small?”

What a great question, even though it’s more or less a rhetorical inquiry. Here’s another twist on it: How can Trump shrink the high office he won a year ago in one of those most stunning political upsets in U.S. history? I think it shrunk the very moment he took the oath of office.

POTUS shrinks his office

The object of Schiff’s retort concerns the Twitter tussle that Trump entered with LaVar Ball, the father of one of three UCLA student/athletes who were charged with shoplifting at a high-end store in the People’s Republic of China.

Trump talked to Chinese leaders while visiting that country and reportedly persuaded them to release the young men instead of convicting them and sentencing them to potentially years-long prison sentences. LaVar Ball then tweeted that Trump didn’t do anything to obtain the release of his son and the other athletes.

Then the president decided to fire back at Ball — a man known for his big mouth and outsized public presence in the lives of his athletically gifted sons.

He said he “should have left them in jail” because LaVar Ball didn’t lavish enough praise on the president for his efforts.

That is one way a small man can occupy such a big office. Indeed, Trump is managing to shrink the office itself with his persistently petulant behavior.

Trump has turned this remarkable “skill” into an art form.

What a year it has been, eh?

I am going to give Donald J. Trump and his presidential election team some props.

Hell hasn’t frozen over. I just want to share a brief word about how this man pulled off the most stunning political upset I’ve ever witnessed.

He won a presidential election one year ago. No one outside of his team really thought he’d win. At least they weren’t saying so publicly. I cannot know what they were thinking in private.

I was one American who was certain that voters would make history on Nov. 8, 2016 by electing the first woman as president of the United States. My money was on Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Silly me. Silly all those so-called “experts.” Voters made history, all right, by electing a guy with no public service experience. None. Zero. He surprised us all.

What’s more, he did it despite saying the most outrageous things I’ve ever heard. He won despite mocking his opponents, hurling insults left and right, spewing outright lies almost daily. He won despite exhibiting profound ignorance of government and the political process.

I once declared that Donald Trump would be “my president” in spite of the fact that I voted — along with a significant plurality of Americans — for the other major-party candidate on the ballot. Yes, he is my president. I am not happy about it.

In the year since the election I’ve tried to figure out just how he did it. How did this carnival barker/clown pull off this huge upset? I guess I’ll go with the view that he spoke the Language of the Everyman. He tapped into that latent anger at The Establishment. He managed to persuade enough voters in just the right states that the nation was going to hell when in fact it has been in economic recovery since 2009.

He pushed forward the lie that he would “make America great again.” If you think about it, he managed with that slogan to insult the greatness of this nation that’s always existed through good times and bad.

I’ll have more to say later as we look back on the year since Trump’s inauguration. For now, it’s good to reflect on what truly was a historic presidential election.

You can’t see me do it, but at this moment I am shaking my head.

How does Trump justify his media hatred?

The hate/hate relationship Donald John Trump has with the media has baffled me from the beginning of his presidency.

You see, the man ought to be thanking the media for the role they played in advancing his presidential candidacy. It hasn’t worked out that way. He has become the media’s Enemy No. 1. And how? Because he fired the first shot in the war.

The media’s making of a presidential candidacy became evident from the candidate’s first day on the campaign trail. He rode down that elevator at Trump Tower in June 2015 and a “love affair” was born.

Trump made outlandish statements from Day One. The media didn’t challenge him. The media seemed reluctant to call the candidate what he was: a liar.

When he announced his plan to ban Muslims from entering the country, he said he witnessed “thousands of Muslims cheering” the collapse of the Twin Towers; he didn’t witness any such thing. He said he lost “many friends” in the Twin Towers; he didn’t lose any friends.

Did the media challenge him in real time for the lies he told? No. They generally let them ride.

Prior to his running for the first public office he ever sought — the presidency — Trump loved the media exposure as long as it promoted his business ventures. He loved the media as well. He chummed around with media moguls.

Eventually, and it took a while, the media began to wise up to how the candidate was playing them. They started, um, doing their job.

It’s been said that the media should “comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable.” That’s what they do. It’s part of their charge as professionals. Trump is among the more, uh, comfortable people in public life; he kept telling us how fabulously wealthy he is. And smart, too.

It’s gone downhill ever since. His election as president has turned the one-time media lover into a media hater. He labels the media as the “enemy of the American people.” His standard retort to anything he deems negative is to call it “fake news.” Trump commits the unconscionable act of singling out individual reporters and the news organizations they represent. He lies continually and the media keep calling him out.

It truly is an amazing turn of events. The president of the United States has declared war on the very institution he needs to inform the public of whatever message he wants to deliver.

Every single one of the president’s predecessors has experienced difficulty with the media during their time in the office Trump now occupies. They all understood something that Trump ignores: The media kept them accountable for their actions.

The media are doing now what they should have been doing from the very beginning of this guy’s campaign for the presidency.

Still struggling with how to refer to the president

The struggle is continuing.

A critic or two of High Plains Blogger has wondered aloud why I keep resisting the urge to refer to Donald Trump as president. You know, put the words “President” and “Trump” together consecutively.

It’s personal, man. Really, that’s all it is.

If you’ve read this blog with any degree of care, you will have noticed that I have no difficulty writing the words “Vice President Pence,” or “Secretary of State Rex Tillerson,” or “Defense Secretary James “Mad Dog” Mattis.” Do you get my drift? Of course you do.

The president is another matter altogether.

All of those individuals I’ve just cited, plus the rest of the entire Trump team — except, perhaps, for his son-in-law and daughter — comport themselves with at the very minimum a semblance of dignity as they go about their jobs representing the United States of America. Ivanka and Jared are in their high-powered jobs only because the president loves his daughter and (I presume) son-in-law.

The president hasn’t made the grade. At least not yet.

Whether he ever gets there remains to be seen. This constant baloney about how smart he is, his recent repeated references to the “standing ovation” he got while meeting with his team, his continual insults and his ridiculous tweets regarding matters that shouldn’t even concern him all cheapen the office he occupies.

And then there are those petulant disputes with Gold Star families. And the clumsiness with which he handles virtually every matter that comes across his desk.

The words “President” and “Trump” don’t yet resonate with me. A part of me — admittedly a still-small part — wants it to change. Until it does, this blog will not go where it should.

Yes, Donald Trump is the president of the United States. I know it and get it fully.

However, he’s got to start acting and sounding like one.

Sen. Flake joins the anti-Trump exodus

What do you know about that?

Another Republican U.S. lawmaker of considerable standing has bailed out on his public service career and is launching a fusillade against the president of the United States — who hails ostensibly from the same political party.

Jeff Flake of Arizona has announced his retirement from the Senate. He took the floor of the body today and raked Donald John Trump Sr. over the coals, following the lead of another key Republican. Bob Corker of Tennessee has announced his retirement as well and has just recently said if he had to do it all over again he couldn’t — and wouldn’t — support a Trump presidential candidacy.

Folks, this is getting very strange.

Flake was facing a challenge from within his party. The Trump Wing of the GOP — however one chooses to define it — had planned a primary challenge for Flake. Why is that? Because Flake had the temerity to write a book that is highly critical of Trump’s tenure as president.

Flake quadrupled down today in his retirement announcement speech. As the Washington Post reported: The charged remarks from Flake — a totem of traditional conservatism who has repeatedly spoken out about his isolation in Trump’s GOP — came hours after Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) questioned the president’s stability and competence, reigniting a deeply personal feud with the president.

Flake unloads

More from the Post: Flake added: “We must stop pretending that the degradation of our politics and the conduct of some in our executive branch are normal. They are not normal. Reckless, outrageous and undignified behavior has become excused and countenanced as ‘telling it like it is’ when it is actually just reckless, outrageous and undignified.”

Hmm. Who do you suppose he’s talking about?

Does it matter to the Trumpkins who keep standing by their guy? Oh, probably not. Sen. Flake, though, has said out loud what has needed to be said since the day Donald Trump was elected president of the United States.

Imagine seeing Trump with his five living predecessors

Try as hard as I do, I cannot wrap my arms around a certain scenario involving Donald J. Trump and five of the men who preceded him as president of the United States.

History has provided opportunities for the living for presidents to gather along with the current POTUS. They have appeared at ribbon-cuttings, at funerals, at various and sundry public functions.

Try to imagine Trump sharing a stage with Presidents Carter, Bush 41, Clinton, Bush 43 and Obama. Imagine these men all setting aside the humiliating insults that Trump has hurled at them collectively and individually. Let’s not forget the insults and name-calling he has hurled at the wife of one of those men, referring to the 2016 Democratic nominee as “Crooked Hillary” Clinton.

Of all of the former presidents I could imagine possibly showing up at a Trump event I can think only of President Carter taking that leap. I guess it’s because of the former president’s deep Christian faith and the grace he embodies even where it involves those who have sought to humiliate him.

I won’t bet the farm, though, on President Carter doing it.

Still, the current president has demonstrated a seemingly limitless capacity to re-litigate the 2016 election. He keeps seeking to rub in the faces of his political foes the fact that he won an election. C’mon, Mr. President! We get it, dude!

His defamation of President Obama sticks in the craw of millions of Americans. He perpetuated the lie that Obama was born abroad and was somehow unqualified to serve as president.

The idiotic insults he hurled at President George W. Bush and his family members cannot possibly have gone down well with the 43rd president.

Trump’s overblown insults at Bill Clinton — not to mention his wife — have been shameful in the extreme.

The only thing that has kept Trump, in my view, from tossing barbs at Bush 41 has been the former president’s health … although I would put nothing past Trump if he chose to offer a snarky comment about the 90-something former commander in chief.

The presidency occasionally offers these individuals opportunities to gather for ceremonial functions. I encourage you to picture any or all of them agreeing to speak publicly about the clown in chief who occupies this venerated office.

Trump trips over himself again

What is it about Donald Trump that prevents him from doing something quietly, gracefully, with empathy and compassion?

He’s walked into yet another controversy, this time over a phone call he made to the wife of a fallen U.S. Army soldier who was among four soldiers killed in Niger.

A Florida congresswoman, Democrat Frederica Wilson, said the president told Myeshia Johnson that her husband, Sgt. David Johnson, “knew what he was getting into.” He added that “it still hurts.”

He said, she said

Trump, quite naturally, has denied saying what Wilson alleges he said. Rep. Wilson said she was overheard the conversation between the president and Mrs. Johnson and is standing by her comment.

I won’t pass any judgment on who’s right, except to note yet again that Trump has shown quite a propensity for prevarication. I have no knowledge of Rep. Wilson’s reputation for veracity.

I guess my point here is that Trump simply is not wired to perform simple — but admittedly tough — tasks without somehow calling attention to himself. It’s always “lights, camera, action!” with this guy.

He said previous presidents didn’t call the loved ones of fallen warriors. Aides to Presidents Clinton, Bush 43 and Obama have denied vehemently what Trump has suggested.

And so … the chaos continues.

Sad.

Melania vs. Ivana adds to Trump chaos

This is unbelievable.

Ivana Trump once was married to Donald John Trump.

They divorced. Donald Trump then married Marla Maples.

Trump and Maples divorced. After that, Donald Trump married his current wife, Melania.

What, then, is Ivana Trump trying to do here? She’s sowing seeds of chaos by saying she has immediate access to the White House, that she’s the actual “first lady.”

You see, chaos follows the president in seemingly every aspect of his life, or so it seems.

As if it needs to be spelled out to Ivana Trump … she ain’t the first lady. She’s one of two former wives of the man who was elected president in 2016.

“This is unfortunately only attention-seeking and self-serving noise,” the first lady’s communications director, Stephanie Grisham, said in a statement to Fox News.

Trump isn’t the first divorcee to be elected president. Ronald Reagan was married to actress Jane Wyman before he married Nancy Davis. If memory serves, I don’t recall Jane Wyman making ridiculous assertions regarding her status as it related to the president.

But, oh, this is a new day, with a new president, and apparently a new set of behavior standards.

The chaos, though, seems oddly familiar.