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“The Nineties” Series On CNN, Part 2, This Evening, Examines The Truth About The Bill Clinton Presidency, Warts And All!

This evening, CNN’s “The Nineties” Series, Part 2, will examine the unvarnished truth about the Bill Clinton Presidency, warts and all.

It will NOT be a whitewash of the Clinton Presidency, arguably the most scandal ridden Democratic Presidency in American history.

Some of the Clinton “Scandals” were conjured up by the right wing hatemongers, no question about that.

But Bill Clinton caused a lot of his own damage, and he cannot be made blameless, and one could say that the Monica Lewinsky Scandal, and other scandals surrounding women, including Paula Jones, disgraced the Presidency.

I wish to point out that when the scandal became public news in January 1998, this author felt that it was a disgrace, and that Clinton should resign immediately, but he refused, and put the nation through hell for an entire year, until he was found not guilty of impeachment charges by the US Senate. It was not an issue of morality, but rather the fact that his behavior could have compromised the national security if any of the women had been connected to Russia or some other foreign enemy, who know how to utilize women spies to blackmail a President or other public figure.

I never believed that Clinton should be impeached, and the hypocrisy of Republican leaders who were cheating on their wives with women, and yet putting Clinton through a constitutional crisis, was infuriating.

But CNN is not glorifying the Clinton Presidency, as much more could have been done during his Presidency, if only the President had known how to behave!

So my suggestion is to watch and think about the damage Bill Clinton’s behavior did to harm the nation, and remember that the first or second paragraph of his eventual obituary will mention that he was the second President impeached by the House of Representatives and brought to trial before the US Senate, after Andrew Johnson.

And now, we face the eventual possibility of the impeachment of Donald Trump, at some point, if he does not resign!

‘The Nineties” Series On CNN, Another Decade Series, Following “The Sixties”, “The Seventies”, And “The Eighties”

CNN has begun this evening a multi-part series on “The Nineties”, shown over a period of two months on Sunday evenings.

It follows up on earlier series on “The Sixties”, shown in 2014; “The Seventies”, shown in 2015; and “The Eighties”, shown in 2016.

All aspects of each decade are shown, including politics, foreign policy, culture, journalism, and social change.

This series, as the three earlier ones, is well worth your attention.

The Media Created Donald Trump, And The Media Will Destroy Him, With The Truth About His Corruption And Malfeasance!

The news media created Donald Trump, giving him lavish coverage and publicity, and enabling him to gain public support with his over the top proposals, which any sane person could have realized was political hype at its worst.

Donald Trump has become the worst con man in American political history, but it is the news media that will bring him down, ultimately, through their thorough, hard hitting exposing of his corruption, and his collusion with the Russians, with more evidence every day of his transgressions.

Plaudits are due to the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, CBS, CNN, and many other media sites and journalists, who are doing the detective work that will help the Special Counsel Robert Mueller collect the dots that will force Trump out of office sometime next year.

Trump is running scared, acting guilty, and his continued assaults on the news media are a threat to American democracy, but he will not win out in the end, one can be assured. He has degraded the Presidency, and it will take time and healing to recover the prestige and dignity of the office after he is forced out.

Just as Richard Nixon had his “Waterloo”, so will Donald Trump, as long as people understand it will take time and patience, but that it will happen, whether the Republican Congress wants it or not, as the American people will demand transparency and action as the evidence grows toward the inevitable step to remove Trump. One author, Frank Rich, in New York Magazine, has said we are in July 1973 in the Nixon crisis, and that in about another year, as with Nixon, Trump will be forced out.

We survived earlier constitutional crises in the Civil War era, and the Watergate era, and we will survive once again, with media having a large share of the credit, utilizing the term–“The truth shall set you free!”

And for those who fear Vice President Mike Pence becoming President, there is no question that he would be the most extreme right wing President in history, but the removal of Trump will help to temper him in his actions and statements, particularly once a Democratic House of Representatives becomes his “watchdog”. And even if we have a continued Republican Senate, which is highly likely, not much will be accomplished, with the reality that the House of Representatives controls all money bills.

As much as Pence is a problem, he is not mentally unhinged and unstable as Donald Trump has proved to be, and the way he comes to power will make it more difficult for him to accomplish many of his goals, as long as the Democrats gain the 24 or more seats needed to win control of the House, and that must be the goal in the next 16 months until the midterms in November 2018.

News Media, With All Their Shortcomings, Preserve Freedom And Democracy In Age Of Donald Trump Presidency

The news media had been, justifiably, criticized at helping Donald Trump to become President, through their focus on the faults and shortcomings of Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in the 2016 Presidential Election campaign.

Particularly the electronic media, the cable channels, have been attacked for giving Donald Trump a forum through phone calls and attention to his rallies, which helped him to stage an upset victory.

With the truth of those accusations, it is also reality that it is the news media, called the “enemy of the American people” by Donald Trump, which is preserving freedom and democracy in America, as they expose the corruption, scandals, and truth about Donald Trump and his administration.

Attack the news media all you want, but without it, we would not have learned about Michael Flynn, Jeff Sessions, or anyone else around Trump, along with his own hypocrisies.

It is the news media that helped to bring down Richard Nixon, particularly the Washington Post, and it is the news media, led by the Washington Post, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, CNN, ABC, NBC, CBS, and others that will eventually bring down Donald Trump.

This author got some notoriety for his article, available on this blog on the right from February 15 on HNN and reprinted on Newsweek on February 19, and a TV Interview on CTV News Channel in Canada on February 16; and radio interviews on the John Gaunt Show in Great Britain on February 17 and WWGH in Marion, Ohio with Scott Spears on February 22. I made the assertion that Trump would be out of office either before 199 days of James A. Garfield, or possibly as long as 392 days of Zachary Taylor, and that belief still is strongly held by this blogger.

This is not a happy assertion, as Mike Pence, while not mentally unhinged as Donald Trump is, has a greater agenda to promote Christianity and extremist right wing views, so the Trump Presidency, whether Trump remains in office or not, is a dangerous turning point to the extreme right, unseen since the 1920s.

The Need For Strong Backing Of Journalism To Hold Trump’s “Feet To The Fire”!

It is urgent that all Americans realize the overwhelming importance of strong backing of major newspapers and magazines, as well as PBS, NPR, CNN and MSNBC to hold government leaders’ “feet to the fire”, to hold them accountable on government policy.

Donald Trump’s attack on the news media is an alarm bell in the night.

Without a free press, specifically print media and electronic media, our democracy can be taken away from us, and no journalist or media source can allow themselves to be intimidated, and must pursue the truth about government leaders and policies without fear of retribution.

If we lose freedom of the press, then our basic civil liberties are threatened, and that is why such organizations as the American Civil Liberties Union and the Southern Poverty Law Center and others like them, must be fully supported in fighting in court to prevent the loss of freedom in any form.

There are cynics about the news media, but such publications as the New York Times, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and major journals of opinion, both in print and online, must be vigilant and not allow themselves to be threatened, as they are the first line of defense for all Americans.

At the same time, CNN and MSNBC must work at being more accurate and less motivated for profit, as many Americans who do not read news online regularly, rely on them to do the job that we used to expect automatically from such media luminaries in the past, such as Walter Cronkite, David Brinkley, Dan Rather, Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings, Ted Koppel, and others, including Diane Rehm on NPR, who just retired, and will be greatly missed!

Time To Confront Newt Gingrich And Rudy Giuliani On Media For Their Invoking Bill Clinton, When Their Own Behavior Is Equally Horrible!

One of the most obnoxious developments of the Presidential campaign is Newt Gingrich, former Speaker of the House, and Rudy Giuliani, former NYC Mayor, both with scandalous private lives, clear womanizers, extreme misogynists, speaking up to defend Donald Trump’s obscene statements and behavior regarding women.

All three have been married three times and have cheated on their wives while married, and most likely, are still cheating on their present third wives.

All three are the lowest of the low, breaking up families, harming their children no matter how much the children might deny it, while Bill Clinton, despite his totally reprehensible behavior, kept his family together, and remains, despite his terrible behavior, in love with his wife.

In many ways, the Bill and Hillary Clinton marriage reminds us of the Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt marriage, with its ups and downs, but real basic love for each other very obvious.

For Gingrich and Giuliani in 2012 and 2008, respectively, to have run for President with their disgraceful private life, as Trump has now, and yet to criticize Hillary Clinton, is the height of hypocrisy.

Kudos to Fox News Channel’s Megyn Kelly for NOT allowing Gingrich to bully her, but of course, Trump went ahead and applauded Gingrich for attacking her, and the effect is to make a mass movement of women abandoning the Republican Party this November, and possibly, for the long term, until and when the GOP no longer endorses misogyny and bad personal behavior in its candidates and its members in the Congress and in the states.

More media people need to openly confront Gingrich, Giuliani,and Trump directly about their behavior, and put them on the defensive. Kudos to Anderson Cooper of CNN for already doing so!

We cannot allow bullies to get away with their actions and behavior, and the American people would salute media personalities, like Cooper, who challenge openly the hypocrisy of these characters!

New CNN Presidential Election Series: “Race For The White House”

CNN has begun a new six part series called “Race For The White House”, which will cover six Presidential elections over the next six weeks, each episode an hour in length, and narrated by actor Kevin Spacey.

On Sunday, the 1960 battle for the White House between John F. Kennedy and Richard Nixon was covered.

Future episodes in some order not known yet include chronologically:

1828–Andrew Jackson and John Quincy Adams

1860–Abraham Lincoln and Stephen Douglas

1948–Harry Truman and Thomas E. Dewey

1988–George H. W. Bush and Michael Dukakis

1992–Bill Clinton and George H. W. Bush

It is not clear why these particular elections were chosen, as there are many others, many more interesting and significant, that were not selected, including:

1896–William McKinley and William Jennings Bryan

1912—Woodrow Wilson, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft

1928–Herbert Hoover and Alfred E. Smith

1932–Franklin D. Roosevelt and Herbert Hoover

1940–Franklin D. Roosevelt and Wendell Willkie

1968–Richard Nixon, Hubert Humphrey, George C. Wallace

1980–Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, John Anderson

2000–George W. Bush and Al Gore

2008–Barack Obama and John McCain

This series is well worth watching, after having seen the first episode last night!

 

The Revival And Rebirth Of Marco Rubio: Now The Only Hope Left For The Republican Party Future?

Twelve days ago, Florida Senator Marco Rubio looked like a ‘dead man”, after his disastrous debate performance, repeating a statement about Barack Obama four times.

It was embarrassing for Rubio, and even if one does not care for Rubio, anyone with any empathy had to be embarrassed for him.

Everyone thought New Jersey Governor Chris Christie would benefit from calling out Rubio, but the following week, Rubio ended up in third place, ahead of all of the Governors in the race—Jeb Bush, John Kasich, and Christie, with Christie in sixth place, and out of the race.

Some would say that Christie’s collapse was fundamental justice, and one can be sure Rubio has thought that.

But now, Rubio has impressed in the most recent debate, and also, particularly in a Town Hall last night on CNN with Anderson Cooper, which had separate 40 minute discussions between Cooper and each of three candidates, rather than a debate, and with ordinary citizens asking the questions.

It is as if there has been a revival and rebirth of Marco Rubio, and on top of all this good news for him, South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley has endorsed him for Governor ahead of the South Carolina primary, a major boost.

Haley gained positive reaction to her reaction after the Charleston Massacre at a African American church last June, and African American Senator Tim Scott had also, earlier, endorsed Rubio.

The possibility of a serious challenge to both Donald Trump and Ted Cruz has now grown, and the “Establishment” wing of the Republican Party is likely to gather around Rubio after the South Carolina primary, and doom the chances of Jeb Bush and John Kasich, as well as Dr. Benjamin Carson.

And the idea of a Presidential ticket of Rubio and either Haley or Scott is growing—a Cuban American with an Indian American (from India) or an African American.

This would bring two “minorities” together, with Rubio being 45 and Haley reaching the same age precisely on Inauguration Day 2017, and Scott being 51—a youthful generation challenging an “old timer”,  such as Hillary Clinton, age 69 by Inauguration Day, and Bernie Sanders age 75 (the oldest first term President in American history).

This ticket, more likely Rubio and Haley, could be a difficult match for either Democratic Presidential candidate!

America’s Fascist Demagogues In History: Huey P. Long, Joseph McCarthy, George C. Wallace, Patrick Buchanan!

The United States has had its Fascist demagogues in the past nearly hundred years of our history, but luckily, they “burned out” very quickly.

We had Democratic Governor and Senator Huey P. Long, who condemned the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt in the early 1930s era of the Great Depression.  He had a big following on radio; drew large public crowds; preached “Every Man A King” and “Share The Wealth” as he attacked Wall Street; had his own group of “storm troopers” to protect him;  and made clear that he hoped to come to power on a national level, having alienated his Senate colleagues and the President by his tactics and showmanship.

His potential threat disappeared, however, when he was assassinated in the Louisiana State Capitol in Baton Rouge in September 1935, a mystery that still exists today, as covered in Chapter 7 of my book, ASSASSINATIONS, THREATS, AND THE AMERICAN PRESIDENCY: FROM ANDREW JACKSON TO BARACK OBAMA (Rowman Littlefield Publishers, August 2015).  He reminded many of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler, both of whom had not yet become as aggressive and warlike as they would become in the mid to late 1930s and early 1940s.

Then we had evil personified in Wisconsin Republican Senator Joseph R. McCarthy of Wisconsin, who stirred fear and insecurity in America in the early 1950s, when he accused Presidents Harry Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower and many government and other public figures of being Communists, or “soft on Communism”.

He ruined thousands of people’s lives, caused their deaths or complete destruction of their lives, but it was all a ploy backed by right wing conservatives, who continue to honor him, even after his political downfall in December 1954 when the US Senate condemned him, and his early death of alcoholism in May 1957.  This despicable man was a true Fascist demagogue with too many people ready to back him, but his cockiness and arrogance and false charges finally brought him down.

Then we had Democratic Governor George C. Wallace of Alabama, who sowed racism in America as he stood in the door of the University of Alabama in 1963 to attempt to block integration of the state university, and allowed police brutality in Birmingham and elsewhere, leading to the bombing of a black church and the death of young girls in the explosion.

A true Fascist demagogue of the worst kind, he actually gained five states and 46 electoral votes as a third party candidate for President in 1968.  Then, while running in 1972 again, he was shot and paralyzed for life by an assassin, a tragic event for sure, but brought on by his notoriety and demagogic nature.  Wallace’s story is well covered in Chapter 11 of my new book mentioned above.

And then we had Patrick Buchanan, an aide to President Richard Nixon and President Ronald Reagan, who promoted nativism and racism and antisemitism, including Holocaust denial,   as he campaigned against President George H. W. Bush in the 1992 primaries; against Bob Dole in the 1996 primaries;  and then ran as a third party candidate of the Reform Party in 2000.

Due to confusion in Palm Beach County, Florida, Buchanan gained 4,000 votes that were intended by voters for Al Gore, but mistakenly, these elderly, mostly Jewish voters punched the wrong hole on the “butterfly” ballots, and by doing so, caused the election of George W. Bush statewide, officially by a total of 537 votes, sadly denying Al Gore the Presidency, despite his national popular vote lead of 540,000!

Buchanan clearly was and is a Fascist demagogue, who, however, has become someone ignored, and no longer has a major media presence in his later years, as he once did on cable television as a political commentator on MSNBC and CNN, although he still is on Fox News Channel and PBS.

And now we have, at the least, two Fascist demagogues, now considered the front runners in the Republican race for President—Donald Trump and Texas Senator Ted Cruz!  Again, the fight against right wing Fascism and its elements–racism, nativism, misogyny, antisemitism—remain a battle decent people must fight with every ounce of their energy!

CNN Reminds Us Of “The Endless Election” Tonight At 9 PM

CNN tonight will have an hour presentation, reminding us of the Presidential Election of 2000, entitled “The Endless Election”.

Many Americans, younger than college age students, have no real memory or knowledge of this transformative election, in which, for the fourth time in American history, the loser of the national popular vote won the Electoral College and the Presidency.

George W. Bush joined John Quincy Adams in the Presidential Election of 1824; Rutherford B. Hayes in the Presidential Election of 1876; and Benjamin Harrison in the Presidential Election of 1888, in that unique circumstance and quirk of the Electoral College system set up by the Founding Fathers at the Constitutional Convention in 1787.

Bush turned out be a major disaster in many ways, including the September 11, 2001 attacks; the decision to overthrow Saddam Hussein in Iraq in 2003; Hurricane Katrina in 2005; and the Great  Recession of 2008-2009.

No one is saying all of these tragedies would have been avoided with a President Al Gore, but most observers agree that Bush will rank in the bottom ten of all Presidents for the long run.

The idea that “hanging chads” in Florida would cause a 36 day election crisis, until the Supreme Court controversially intervened on a straight party line vote to grant Bush the win in Florida by 537 popular votes, still is upsetting to many, and one has to wonder how the Al Gore contribution to the Presidency would have changed history, and affected America long term!