Trump: ‘Vote for me’ in the midterm election

Donald J. Trump is the gift that just keeps on giving.

The president has been imploring his fans at campaign rallies to “vote for me” — meaning him, of course — in this year’s midterm election.

Trump isn’t on the ballot, of course. In a way, though, he is. The election might become a referendum on the president’s leadership.

I am one American who dislikes the idea of Donald Trump being president. I am not alone. There are more of us than there are on the other side, according to pollsters who keep taking the nation’s pulse on these matters.

Thus, when Donald Trump tells his fans to “vote for me” he’s actually energizing a potentially larger segment of the American voting public than those who support him. Does that point make sense? It does to me.

So when the president keeps harping about he is on the proverbial ballot next Tuesday, I applaud him. I concur that he is on the ballot. I want the election to be about him.

I am acutely aware that others see Trump’s imploring voters to vote for him as a plus for their side. They think Trump’s time as president so far has been an smashing success. They cite those tax cuts. They say he’s “making America great again.” They contend that he has put the country first and that his nose-thumbing of our allies is in our nation’s best interests.

Allow me to shake my head for just a moment. There. I’m done.

Trump continues to lie and then talk about how he tries to tell the truth. He stokes fear about the “caravan,” calling it an “invasion” by grandparents, children, families frightened beyond measure about oppression and death; he wants to deploy thousands of troops to the southern border to “take control” of the region, to defend us against invading horde.

He wants to put himself on the ballot? Good! Bring it, Mr. President.

Trump is impossible to believe — at any level!

I used to say when Stanley Marsh 3 — Amarillo’s most notable weirdo — was alive that there wasn’t a single thing I could disbelieve about him. He seemed capable of pulling off damn near any stunt imaginable.

That said, there is not a single thing I can believe coming out of Donald J. Trump’s mouth. Nothing he says — not a damn thing — is to be taken at face value.

“Do you love your wife, Mr. President?” He would say “yes,” but do I actually believe him? Not for a second! Or an instant!

Jonathan Karl of ABC News asked the president about his truth-telling. The president said “I do try” to tell the truth, but added that sometimes “I can’t.” He offered some goofy explanation about how things change: “I always want to tell the truth. When I can, I tell the truth. And sometimes it turns out to be to be where something happens that’s different or there’s a change, but I always like to be truthful.”

Is he saying that circumstances change as he’s talking about them? Does he suggest that when he starts providing an answer that matters change that turn a truthful answer into a lie?

How does this guy get away with it?

The liar in chief

Donald Trump has turned lying into something of a political art form. His critics — such as me — no longer believe anything that comes out of his mouth. His supporters — such as some readers of this blog — give him a pass.

These Trumpsters, many of whom I count as friends of mine, demand the truth from people such as me when commenting on the president, but make no such demand of the guy who lies gratuitously, without any discernable need. When given an opportunity to remain silent on an issue, he chooses to lie.

He boasts about the “huge” victory he scored in 2016. He brags about the record size of his inauguration crowd. Trump blasts past president for playing too much golf, says he won’t have time for it, then plays more golf than any of them. He says America is the only nation on Earth that grants citizenship to people born here, but that’s not true, either.

His fans don’t mind the lies.

What in the world … ?

Docs set aside their own bias to do their job

What would you do … if someone is thrust into your care while he spews hatred against people of your faith?

Care for him? Would you call him what he is, a hate-filled bigot? Refuse to provide care?

Doctors and nurses who took care of the man accused of killing 11 worshipers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pa., this past Saturday answered the call. They exemplified the meaning of true service to others, even those who profess blind hatred toward them all.

A Jewish doctor and a Jewish nurse administered first aid to the suspect in this horrifying incident. They did so with professionalism and, I’ll presume, care.

The doctors take an oath that says they should “do no harm.” Nurses also are trained professionally to provide the best medical care they can deliver.

These individuals found themselves placed into a most uncomfortable circumstance when they were asked — or ordered — to care for an individual who committed the hate crime in U.S. history against Jewish Americans.

Dr. Jeffrey Cohen, the top administrator at Allegheny General Hospital, told CNN that the suspect was still screaming that he wanted to kill Jews.

“And the first three people who are taking care of him are Jewish,” Cohen said. “I said, ‘Well yeah, ain’t that a kick in the pants?'”

Indeed, Cohen happens to worship at Tree of Life.

As CNN reported: “The FBI agent in charge looked at me and says, ‘I don’t know how you did that ’cause I’m not sure I could have,'” Cohen recalled.

Cohen acknowledged that some on his staff had “conflicting emotions” about Bowers but said ultimately Allegheny General has one mission: to take care of sick people, regardless of who they are or their circumstances.
“We don’t ask questions (about) who they are. We don’t ask questions about their insurance status or whether they can pay,” he told CNN. “To us, they’re patients.”

‘When I can, I tell the truth’

Wow! I’m just now catching my breath.

The quote in the headline comes from the liar in chief, the president of the United States, Donald John Trump Sr.

He said it to ABC News chief White House correspondent Jonathan Karl, who scored an interview with the president after a campaign rally this week.

Karl asked the president about the veracity of his statements. He said, “Well, I try. I do try. I always want to tell the truth.” Man, that is astonishing in the extreme.

When someone says they “try” to do something, I have found it is code for admitting they fail to do something. “I am trying to lose weight.” “I am trying to quit smoking.” My favorite is when you invite someone to an event and they respond, “I’ll try,” which always means “I can’t make it.”

I understand full well that presidents on occasion have to shade the truth for, say, national security purposes. They cannot reveal all that they know for obvious reasons. Trump’s lying is vastly different from that type of fibbing.

Donald Trump’s “trying” to tell the truth doesn’t account for the gratuitous nature of his lies. He said he tells the truth “when I can.” Baloney! That doesn’t explain the countless whoppers he has told: witnessing “thousands of Muslims” cheering the collapse of the Twin Towers on 9/11; the United States is “the only country” that grants birthright citizenship; he has “proof” that Barack Obama was born abroad and was unqualified to run for president.

Hey, I’ve only peeled the top layer off the thousands of lies Donald Trump has told.

More lies than we can count

The Washington Post Fact Checker has detected more than 5,000 lies in the 600 or so days since Trump became president. It adds that the pace is quickening.

Just as George Washington reportedly said “I cannot tell a lie,” Donald Trump cannot tell the truth.

That is no lie.

RIP, Willie McCovey

Oh, man. This saddens me.

Willie McCovey has died at the age of 80. He was a first-ballot member of the Major League Baseball Hall of Fame. He led the National League twice in home runs.

He was considered at the peak of his career to be the “most dangerous hitter” in baseball. The term “dangerous,” I reckon, had something to do with how hard he could hit a baseball.

I want to share a brief Willie McCovey story here, just to let you know, I suppose, that I have been able to get around during my life.

In August 1964, I ventured to San Francisco after winning a trip by selling subscriptions to my hometown newspaper, the Portland Oregonian. I wasn’t yet 15 years of age.

We got to attend a baseball game on that trip at Candlestick Park, where the San Francisco Giants played hardball. They played the Cincinnati Reds that day. I got to see two other Hall of Famers that day: Willie Mays for the Giants and Frank Robinson for the Reds.

Willie McCovey, though, did something quite impressive that day. Candlestick Park was known as a place where the wind howled in from San Francisco Bay. The outfield was exposed to that wind, and it was blowing that day briskly into the stadium.

McCovey, who hit left-handed, managed to blast a home run out of Candlestick Park, over the right-field fence, straight into that hideous wind and into the bay, which came to be known as McCovey Cove.

It was quite a thrill to see McCovey hit a home run that day. If memory serves, it gave the Giants the only run they scored that day; the Reds won the game, with Robinson hitting three home runs into the left field seats.

But … this tribute is about Willie McCovey. Yeah, he could hit a baseball. He could hit it hard.

May he rest in peace.

This really is the most important midterm election … ever!

Politicians say it all the time. It doesn’t matter their partisan affiliation — Republican or Democrat — they sing it off the same song sheet.

“This is the most important election in our history!”

That’s what they say. They might mean it. Or they might be saying just to fire up their respective supporters.

Guess what. I think this election, the 2018 midterm, actually is the most important midterm election in U.S. history.

What’s at stake? Plenty, man!

Republicans control both chambers of Congress and the White House. The executive branch, the White House gang, is being led by a man, Donald J. Trump, who doesn’t know what he’s doing. He entered the presidency without a lick of public service experience, let alone any interest. He is a dangerous fellow who doesn’t grasp the limits of his power, or how the government is designed to function.

The House of Representatives presents the Democrats with their greatest opportunity to seize the gavel from their GOP colleagues. They need to do precisely that if for no other reason on Earth to act as a check on the runaway agenda being pushed by Donald Trump and endorsed by a GOP congressional majority that is scared spitless of the president.

I am among those who believe the Senate is likely to remain in Republican hands when the ballots are counted next Tuesday. Indeed, it appears to be entirely possible that the Senate’s GOP majority might actually increase by a seat or two; Republicans occupy 51 seats at this moment, with Democrats (and two independents who favor the Dems) occupying 49 seats.

The House, however, must flip. It must act as a check on Trump and on the GOP members of Congress who give this seriously flawed president a pass on so many issues. They excuse his hideous behavior; they refuse to call him out vigorously when he refuses to condemn haters — such as the KKK and neo-Nazis; they roll over when he pushes for repeal of the Affordable Care Act or enact tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans; they pledge to cut money for Medicare and Medicaid to help curb the spiraling annual federal budget deficit.

Divided government has worked in the past. Barack Obama had to work with a Congress led by the other party. So did George W. Bush. Same for Bill Clinton. Ditto for George H.W. Bush and Ronald Reagan.

It lends a greater air of a need for compromise.

If the Democrats fall short on Tuesday, clearing the path for Trump and the GOP to run roughshod over the rest of us, well … we’re going to have hell to pay.

Yes, this is the most important midterm election in U.S. history.

Trump lies his way into the swamp

I cannot let go of this “birthright citizenship” matter that Donald J. Trump has thrust to the top of our minds’ awareness.

He said he wants to issue an executive order to rescind a portion of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the part that says anyone born in the United States becomes a citizen of this country simply by virtue of his or her birth.

Trump had the gall to declare that the United States is “the only country” on Earth that allows such a thing.

The president lied. Again. Imagine my (non)surprise. It’s shocking, I tell ya … simply shocking that the president would lie.

The truth is that 30 other countries allow birthright citizenship. Canada is one of them. Mexico is another of them. Those three nations, with a combined population of about 500 million residents, have such laws on the books.

Ours is written in the Constitution. It was ratified in 1868. It has been on the books for 150 years. Birthright citizenship has never been a serious issue — until now. Why? Because Donald Trump has made it one. He is sowing the seeds of division and fear. He is appealing to the bigots among us to believe that birthright citizenship is now something to rescind and he’s going to do it by issuing an executive order, by golly!

No. He isn’t. He cannot do it.

Nor can he continue to lie about it, by repeating the lie that the United States is Earth’s sole country that has such a law.

The liar in chief is continuing to serve in the most disgraceful manner possible.