conservatives

The Misunderstanding Of The Terms “Liberal” And “Progressive”

A new debate is emerging over the use of the terms “Liberal” and “Progressive”.

There are those who think there is a real difference between these two political terms, but this blogger and author wishes to make clear that he sees no difference in reality.

The term “Progressive” became popular with the rise of President Theodore Roosevelt, and Senators Robert La Follette Sr of Wisconsin and George Norris of Nebraska in the early 20th century. This term became notable due to these Republican officeholders and others.

But in the 1930s, Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal ushered in a different term, that the reforms of the 1930s were “Liberal”, and for the next half century, “Liberal” was the preferred term, promoted by President John F. Kennedy, and Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota and others in the Democratic Party, and by Republicans including Governor Nelson Rockefeller and Senator Jacob Javits of New York and others.

With the rise of Ronald Reagan to the Presidency, with the attacks on “liberalism” by conservatives, the term “Progressive” returned to favor, and this author chose that term for the title of his blog, when he began it in 2008.

But I consider the terms “Liberal” and “Progressive” to be interchangeable, as both represent the promotion of the virtues of government; the need for economic regulation; the promotion of social reform; and concern for human rights and environmental protection. Additionally, the importance of international alliances and agreements is paramount, and the avoidance of unnecessary wars and military intervention except if truly a threat to national security, is essential.

So for instance, World War II, the Korean War, and the Persian Gulf War were justifiable, while the wars in Vietnam and Iraq were not justifiable, and support of military dictatorships around the world suppressing freedom has always been unethical and immoral.

So as I stated on my Personal Profile page since August 2008, I am proud to call myself a “Liberal” AND a “Progressive”!

The Conservative Political Action Conference: The Cult Of Personality Supporting Donald Trump Without Question Or Qualms

The Conservative Political Action Conference last weekend was a telling example of where conservatism has gone—to a cult of personality supporting Donald Trump without question or qualms.

It is very clear that intelligent conservatives, many who write commentary, and those conservatives, many who worked for Ronald Reagan, the Bushes, and for GOP nominees Bob Dole, John McCain, and Mitt Romney, are horrified by the utterances, actions, and personality of Donald Trump.

But the “mob” of ignorant “groupies” who worship Donald Trump are clearly mean spirited, and as racist, nativist, misogynist, and white supremacist as their leader, and their and his behavior at the CPAC conference was shocking, terrifying, and disgraceful.

Trump put on a show of more than two hours, ranting and raving like a maniac, in his longest speech in office. He hugged the American flag twice in a lunatic manner, and attacked every imaginable critic and “enemy”, and cheers were heard for his continued attacks on John McCain months after his passing, totally reprehensible. And through it all, there were cheers from people who sound like the next generation of Nazis and Fascists.

One would think this was a rally of Nazis at Nuremberg, and was similar to the rally at Charlottesville, Virginia, that led to violence and the murder of one young woman, an event in which Donald Trump claimed that “both sides” had good people at that rally.

There were no good people at CPAC, none, and it is a sign of how Donald Trump has promoted hatred, fear, violence, and is intent on destroying everything good and decent ever promoted into law by responsible Republicans, as well as Democrats.

The threat of Donald Trump to American democracy is real, and the movement to take action against the 45th President is in full gear, with the hope that future damage can be prevented, but we are at a turning point that is crucial for the future of the American republic and for democracy.

Trump’s State Of The Union Address: LIES, LIES, LIES!

President Donald Trump gave his second State of the Union Address last night, and it was full of lies, mistruths, and pure propaganda.

Trump claimed the economy has been brilliant under him, completely forgetting, conveniently, that the greatest economic revival from an economic downturn was under Barack Obama, who came in with 10 percent unemployment and brought it down below 5 percent; and the stock market having its greatest percentage growth ever under any President.

Trump claimed crime by undocumented immigrants was a massive problem, when the crime rate by American citizens is far higher, and crimes by undocumented immigrants, while sadly occurring and creating some victims, is NOT a major issue across the nation. It is white supremacists who are Americans, who are committing most crimes, and the victims are people of color.

Trump claimed that the Mexico border is seeing a massive flow of “caravans”, a claim which is totally created in his imagination, as the migration across the border is the lowest since the 1970s, but he has no issue in making Mexicans the enemy, and undermining relations with our neighbor, which shares a 2,000 mile border with us.

Trump talks about the need for infrastructure spending, and the issue of health care, but his administration has failed to deal with either issue, and instead has just been out to throw millions of Americans off the Affordable Care Act, without any alternative.

Trump speaks about the accomplishments of women, but it is because of his misogyny that we have seen the election of more women to Congress than ever before in American history, and they will not tolerate his sexism, and are working to fight for the rights of women, including to their own bodies.

Trump calls for the end of investigations, but it is the responsibility of Congress and the Justice Department to learn all of the facts about corruption and manipulations of the election, and Trump is on the Titanic, and the ship is sinking. His threat that no progress can be made is empty, as nothing positive has been accomplished in his first two years, and political scientists rate him after one year as number 44 out of 44 Presidents. Even conservatives and Republicans who are part of the American Political Science Association rate Trump only number 40 out of 44. So Trump will not survive his term and will be rated the absolutely worst President in US history, a well deserved conclusion.

“Pampered, Spoiled Brat” Ready To Commit Symbolic “Reichstag Fire” Action Of Declaring National Emergency That Does Not Exist To Seize Power: Beginning Of End Of Trump Presidency

Donald Trump is about to abuse power in a way that no one can doubt the danger and the threat that he represents.

A non-existent national emergency at the US-Mexico border is about to be used as the excuse for committing a “Reichstag Fire” action by a man who inherited $200 million from his father, and is as Joe Scarborough said this morning, a “pampered, spoiled brat” who acts like a toddler in office, and is clearly mentally deranged and demented, and is a threat to the United States population and the Constitution.

Complicit in this abuse are Republicans in Congress, including Lindsey Graham, Mitch McConnell, Kevin McCarthy, Steve King, and all of the House Freedom Caucus members, as well as Fox News Channel and its talk show hosts, including Tucker Carlson, Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham, Judge Jeanine Pirro, and Michelle Malkin, and talk radio hosts, including Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, Michael Savage, and rabble rousers such as Ann Coulter.

It is clear that Donald Trump is out to destroy the federal government and its agencies, after setting out to destroy the news media, law enforcement and intelligence and national security agencies, and undermining the judiciary with unqualified, incompetent and corrupt appointees to the federal courts. He will not be satisfied until he has finished the job of helping Vladimir Putin destroy America’s relationship with its allies, and undermine America’s domestic policy, and sow racial, religious, and ethnic hatred, and promote anti women and anti gay policies, in the name of white male supremacy.

At a time when federal workers are struggling to survive without paychecks; when people in Puerto Rico and in California are in need of national emergency support for natural disasters in the name of hurricanes and forest fires; when we have dire need for promotion of infrastructure spending, health care, education, and so many other needs, Donald Trump is declaring war on American democracy.

Donald Trump must be stopped from his abuse of power, and it is assured that the courts will rule against him, and the Congress will expose his human rights crimes against immigrants and children, and his nasty, mean spirited lack of empathy for human suffering.

The man is a cancer on the American system of government, and the crime of collusion with Russia will be further exposed when Michael Cohen testifies before Congress in February.

Meanwhile, if Donald Trump declares the equivalent of martial law to protect himself, mass demonstrations and demands for his removal from office must begin, as we face the greatest constitutional crisis since the Civil War, much worse than the Watergate Crisis under Richard Nixon.

May responsible conservative writers and commentators have joined liberals in denouncing the authoritarian bent of Donald Trump, much closer to Fascism than many realize.

We are likely to see crises arise, in such agencies as air traffic control, Transportation Security Administration, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Secret Service, the Federal Courts, the Internal Revenue Service, the Food and Drug Administration, the Environmental Protection Agency, and many other agencies. All are part of the protective nature of our federal agencies which are now crippled, as we have a longer government shutdown than ever before in American history.

The office of the American Presidency has reached a stage of being an Imperial Presidency run amuck, much worse than Richard Nixon represented, and Donald Trump must be stopped in his abuse of power for the survival of constitutional government, and sooner, rather than later.

The Ultimate Outcome Of The Midterm Elections Of 2018: The Social Welfare, Social Justice State Is Permanent After 83 Years

The ultimate outcome of the Midterm Elections of 2018 is the success and institutionalization of the Social Welfare, Social Justice State, finally permanent after 83 years.

It all goes back to the New Deal of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and the passage of Social Security in 1935, bitterly fought by Republicans and conservatives of that era, and still argued about by such leaders as Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan over the next half century.

But in 1983, President Reagan and Democratic Speaker of the House Thomas “Tip” O’Neill negotiated a bipartisan deal to save Social Security, not destroy it as Reagan had wanted to do, and it is the fundamental part of the Social Safety Net.

In 1965, after years of opposition by Republicans and conservatives, Lyndon B. Johnson and his Great Society accomplished Medicare and Medicaid. It has continued to be attacked and condemned, but it has survived and is a great part of the Social Safety Net.

Then, in 2010, Barack Obama accomplished the Affordable Care Act or ObamaCare, with no cooperation from Republicans or conservatives, even though back in 1993, conservatives, with the support of Bob Dole and Newt Gingrich, came up with a very similar health care plan, in opposition to the Bill and Hillary Clinton health care plan, which ultimately failed of passage. Also, Mitt Romney in Massachusetts accomplished a very similar plan as ObamaCare, but ran against his own plan for the nation when he ran for President in 2012.

The Republicans continued to try to destroy ObamaCare ever since 2010, having 70 votes on it over the years, but Chief Justice Roberts and Senator John McCain in 2012 and 2017, respectively, backed continuation at crucial moments. Now, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell has indicated that, clearly, ObamaCare is here to stay, so like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid, ObamaCare has survived and become a permanent part of the Social Safety Net.

The Democrats and progressives have accomplished these great pieces of legislation since 1935, and the goal has always been to improve the laws, as no one ever said they were perfect, but it is the Democrats, not the Republicans who have advocated and succeeded in accomplishing the Social Welfare, Social Justice state, and they should be very proud of the work they have done.

So FDR, LBJ, and Obama are the three most successful domestic policy Presidents, and not just in the areas mentioned in this article!

The Midterm Elections Of 2018 Come Down To A Referendum On Donald Trump

It is now certain that the Midterm Elections of 2018 are a referendum on Donald Trump, in a way unseen since at least when Richard Nixon went out and campaigned in the midterm 1970 elections.

Donald Trump is becoming more unstable and reckless by the day, and by his nonstop campaigning in states with Democrats in the Senate, but support for Donald Trump in 2016, the results will be seen as either a repudiation or an endorsement of the President.

Trump is behaving in a more erratic manner than ever before, including talk about ending birthright citizenship by executive order, even though even conservatives make it clear that cannot be accomplished other than by a constitutional amendment.

Trump is also claiming he is sending thousands of soldiers to the Mexico border, more than we have seen since Woodrow Wilson was President a century ago, during the Mexican Revolution, although it seems the Pentagon has no such plans actually to do so.

Trump is making Central American refugees, mostly women and children, seem like a terrorist, drug dealing, criminal mob, and now has even stated that if any refugees show any sign of throwing rocks at soldiers, then he will order the troops to use firearms against these people.

This would remind us of what happened at Kent State University in 1970, when National Guardsmen opened up fire with live ammunition against a demonstration of students against the invasion of Cambodia, and killed four and wounded nine.

Trump is lying to scare voters, instill fear, and make people hate migrants (poor women and their children) who are simply escaping bloodshed, violence, and gangs trying to recruit their children in nations that have fallen into disarray by American policy over the last few decades.

If this awful scenario were ever to occur, it would be grounds for nationwide marches and demonstrations, as to shoot and kill unarmed people who just have rocks, would be a war crime.

This is yet another reason why it is urgent that Donald Trump be repudiated next Tuesday, and that the Republicans be defeated nationwide, as otherwise, the horrors of a declaration of martial law, and the establishment of a Fascist dictatorship will be on us, and our democracy will be destroyed.

Future generations will look at such an event as the most horrific possible moment in US history, and it is possible to imagine a civil war breaking out, which our rivals in the world would love to see happen, as it would destroy the world leadership of the United States in a way that would not be retrievable for decades.

What Is Needed In November: Blue Wave (Democrats), Pink Wave (Women), Orange Wave (Men And Gun Safety), Green Wave (Environment)

With the midterm elections less than four weeks away, it is clear that what is needed is not one “wave”, but four “waves”.

A “Blue Wave” is needed, the gaining of, hopefully, control of both houses of Congress, and the majority of state governorships and state legislative majorities.

But a “Pink Wave’ is needed by a mass uprising by women of all backgrounds, races, sections of the nation, to make clear that misogyny and abuse of women by conservatives and Republicans will no longer be tolerated.

There is also a need for an “Orange Wave”, promoted by Fred Guttenberg, the father of Parkland victim Jaime Guttenberg, on the need for a serious movement toward gun control and regulation, as we are losing tens of thousands of victims, many of them in schools and universities, and also many through suicide. This must include serious promotion of mental health initiatives, so that we do not have the constant massacres of innocent human beings, because of the lack of concern by the gun industry, which is only interested in profits.

And finally, a “Green Wave” is needed by those who care about climate change and the environment, determined to fight to prevent the destruction of the environment by coal companies, oil companies, natural gas companies, and corporations in general, who all think only of the profit motive now, and not the long range effect of what their companies are doing. And the struggle against the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Interior leadership must be fought with vehemence, as the future of America and the entire globe are at stake.

Supreme Court Justice Predictability Not So: Nine Cases From Felix Frankfurter To David Souter

As the hearings continue on the nomination of Circuit Court Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court, the question has arisen over whether Supreme Court Justices are predictable in their evolution on the Court.

The argument is that most Supreme Court Justices are “pegged” when they are considered for the Court, and do not disappoint the President and the party which nominated them for the Court.

But history actually tells us that there are quite a few exceptions to this perceived thought.

Felix Frankfurter (1939-1962), appointed by Franklin D. Roosevelt, migrated from an earlier liberal, almost radical view, to a clearly conservative view, disappointing many Democrats in the process.

Earl Warren (1953-1969), appointed Chief Justice by Republican Dwight D. Eisenhower, and thought to be a conservative oriented person, turned out in the mind of many Republicans “a flaming liberal”, totally surprising Eisenhower and many pleased Democrats and liberals.

William Brennan (1956-1990), appointed by Eisenhower, and a rare Catholic on the Court, and thought to be a conservative, turned out to be even more liberal in his jurisprudence, and lasted twice as long as Warren on the Supreme Court, stunning many conservatives and Republicans.

Byron White (1962-1993), appointed by John F. Kennedy, was thought to be a liberal, but was a consistent conservative in his years on the Court.

Harry Blackmun (1970-1994), appointed by Richard Nixon, started off as a conservative, along with his so called “Minnesota Twin” and colleague, Chief Justice Warren Burger, but veered sharply left more and more, diverging dramatically from Burger as the years went by, and honored by liberals as a great Supreme Court Justice.

John Paul Stevens (1975-2010), appointed by Gerald Ford, was thought to be a moderate conservative, but dramatically moved left in his jurisprudence, and remained on the Court for 35 years, third longest of any Justice in history, retiring at age 90, but still active at age 98 (the longest lived Justice ever), and still promoting liberal viewpoints.

Sandra Day O’Connor (1981-2006), appointed by Ronald Reagan as first woman on the Court, turned out to be far less conservative, veering toward the center, and seen as a balance on the Court, unpredictable during her tenure on the Court.

Anthony Kennedy (1988-2018), appointed by Reagan, and just retired, thought to be a hard line conservative, turned out to be the second “swing” vote with O’Connor, and then the true “swing” vote on the Court, joining the liberal side one third of the time.

David Souter (1990-2009), appointed by George H. W. Bush, was thought of as moving the Court to the Right, after William Brennan retired, but many Republicans and conservatives were severely disappointed in his unpredictability, and often his siding with the liberal view on many issues, more than one would have expected.

Notice, however, that seven of these nine cases, all but Frankfurter and White, were of Republican appointments that turned out to be much more “liberal” than one might have imagined, with only Frankfurter and White turning out to be more “conservative” than perceived at the time of their nominations to the Supreme Court.

John McCain In Death Unifies Many People Of Different Persuasions

Senator John McCain may have died, but his death and upcoming funeral unites people of many different persuasions, Republicans and Democrats, liberals and conservatives.

Actor Warren Beatty, a liberal Democrat, will be one of the pallbearers at the funeral this coming Saturday, along with former Vice President Joe Biden, former Secretary of Defense William Cohen, former NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg, former Senators Russ Feingold of Wisconsin and Gary Hart of Colorado, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island, and former Homeland Security Secretary and Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge.

Tributes will be offered by Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama, Senator Lindsey Graham of South Carolina, former Senator Joe Lieberman of Connecticut, former Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, former Secretary of State Henry Kissinger, and members of McCain’s family.

McCain’s body will be interred at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, where he graduated fifth from the bottom of his class, but still led a distinctive career despite his partying and lack of seriousness while there.

One has to wonder who would be at Donald Trump’s funeral, since he has so alienated so many people and groups.

Utah Senator Mike Lee Seems To Have An Edge For Supreme Court Nomination

On June 28, this blogger suggested that Utah Senator Mike Lee was a likely potential possibility for the Supreme Court nominee to replace Justice Anthony Kennedy.

He would be a rarity, a sitting United States Senator, chosen for the Supreme Court.

There is no requirement that a sitting Federal Court judge must be chosen, although that has become the tradition since Governor Earl Warren of California was chosen to be Chief Justice by President Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1953, with only Sandra Day O’Connor, who served in the Arizona State Senate, and chosen by Ronald Reagan in 1981, having any elective experience since then.

As stated on June 28, we had Senators earlier, including most impressively, Hugo Black, who had done good deeds on the Supreme Court.

So the belief that Mike Lee has the advantage comes to the forefront again. It was announced that Lee had been interviewed for the position, so he is on the short list.

Lee is 47, which from the viewpoint of Donald Trump and conservatives, is ideal, meaning a 35 year term on the Supreme Court under normal circumstances.

Lee is a sometimes critic of Trump, who did not back him, which makes him seem independent of any influence by Trump if Lee was on the Court.

Lee is pro life, which would make it hard for Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski to support him, but neither is needed as long as some Red State Democrats—Joe Manchin, Joe Donnelly, Heidi Heitkamp—all who voted for Neil Gorsuch last year—support him. And both Collins and Murkowski ended up voting for Gorsuch, so their protestations seem weak.

It would be difficult for either Collins or Murkowski to vote against their own party and Senate colleague in the end, as after all, both voted for Jeff Sessions as Attorney General, and Collins even gave a strong endorsement presentation before the Senate Judiciary Committee for his nomination to the Justice Department, despite his outrageous racism.

So I suggest that Lee might be the choice of Trump, and more likely to sail through confirmation, and with a likely 53-46 vote (without John McCain voting), and possibly more Red State Democrats justifying the vote for their “Senate colleague”!

Party loyalty and Senatorial “courtesy” give Mike Lee the advantage, at least in theory, but we shall see!