History

History Tells Us Many States Are Not Protective Of Their Population: Reason Why We Need Federal Government!

Conservatives and libertarians love to promote the propaganda that “states rights” are the best government, and that state governments are there for their population’s needs.

History tells us otherwise, clear and simple.

“States rights” promoted 76 years of slavery under the Constitution, until it was ended by the Union winning the Civil War over the Confederacy.

“States rights” promoted segregation of the races for nearly a century after the Civil War until the 1960s.

“States rights” promoted laws against marriage, including blacks and whites, and gays and lesbians.

“States rights” promoted vigilante justice, including lynchings, chain gangs, and overly harsh criminal justice laws.

“States rights” promoted men having dominance over their wives in marriages, and resulting abuses toward women.

“States rights” promoted inferior education, including denial of historical facts, and of science, favoring religious ideas over facts.

“States rights” promoted violations of voting rights, with the intent of ruling white upper classes controlling who could vote.

“States rights” promoted denial of health care to people, while insisting on all fetuses being taken to birth against a woman’s wishes.

“States rights” promoted resistance to the Bill of Rights, and to federal government political, social, and economic reforms that made America pursue the goals of democracy, equality, and justice.

Those states that have regularly promoted “states rights” have been the most backward, the most discriminatory, the most regressive. the poorest, and have depended on the more advanced and open minded states for their economic existence.

It is the “Red” states, those in the old Confederate South, and in the Great Plains and Rocky Mountain West, where we see the worship of “states rights”, as long as the elite political and religious hierarchy keep control over their populations, and keep them ignorant and under mind control.

History tells us that these states are not protective of the needs of their population, the reason we need a strong, assertive federal government, ready to step in, and having bettered life for people who are seemingly unaware how they have been manipulated by corrupt state governments.

Donald Trump Competes With Warren G. Harding And George W. Bush As Least Intelligent President Of The United States!

The more one observes President Donald Trump, the more one realizes that he is one of the most ignorant, ill informed, and least intelligent Presidents of the United States.

Many of our Presidents have been intellectual heavyweights (16), including:

John Adams
Thomas Jefferson
James Madison
John Quincy Adams
Abraham Lincoln
James A. Garfield
Theodore Roosevelt
William Howard Taft
Woodrow Wilson
Herbert Hoover
Franklin D. Roosevelt
John F. Kennedy
Richard Nixon
Jimmy Carter
Bill Clinton
Barack Obama

Others, while not intellectually outstanding, were capable of good leadership (13) including:

George Washington
James Monroe
Andrew Jackson
James K. Polk
Ulysses S. Grant
Grover Cleveland
William McKinley
Harry Truman
Dwight D. Eisenhower
Lyndon B. Johnson
Gerald Ford
Ronald Reagan
George H. W. Bush

Then, there are others who are mediocre by comparison, but had at least some redeeming qualities (12), including:

Martin Van Buren
William Henry Harrison
John Tyler
Zachary Taylor
Millard Fillmore
Franklin Pierce
James Buchanan
Andrew Johnson
Rutherford B. Hayes
Chester Alan Arthur
Benjamin Harrison
Calvin Coolidge

And then there are the three Presidents at the absolute bottom intellectually, and all three disasters in office, including

Warren G. Harding
George W. Bush
Donald Trump

At least Harding and Bush were decent human beings, who bumbled their way through the Presidency, but Donald Trump is, in many ways, more ignorant and dense than either Harding or the second Bush.

Harding was a lightweight intellectually, but at least he published a newspaper in Marion, Ohio, before his political career, and he had some outstanding cabinet officers including Charles Evans Hughes and Herbert Hoover.

George W. Bush, we know, read a great deal in the White House, while Trump is not a reader, and hardly gets past a page or two, even of important documents, as we learn that he counts on his top staff people to keep him up to date, and prefers Twitter and watching cable news as his main sources of information. His lack of intellectual curiosity, and willingness to believe conspiracy theories as fact is extremely alarming.

Trump has shown total ignorance of history and science, and is proving to be a true total disaster after only a little more than 100 days in office. He is much more destructive of the image of the Presidency than Harding or Bush could ever be!

Donald Trump’s Confused Mental State And Erratic Behavior: A Call For Mike Pence To Invoke The 25th Amendment, Section 4, NOW!

A national crisis has now arisen, as the behavior of Donald Trump in the past 72 hours demonstrates a confused mental state and erratic behavior.

His statements about Andrew Jackson, the Civil War, and Kim Jong Un of North Korea, and his general lack of knowledge and clarity on many domestic and foreign policy issues is extremely troubling and dangerous, particularly at a time when war with North Korea seems likely soon, and Trump has power over the nuclear codes.

Trump is undermining our relations with our allies, South Korea and Japan, which are directly affected by Trump’s changing stance on North Korea.

Trump is harming our relations with our border neighbors, Canada and Mexico.

Trump is confusing our major rivals, China and Russia, as well as Iran and ISIL (ISIS).

Trump is worrying our major allies in Europe (Great Britain, Germany, and France), and the whole NATO alliance system which has worked so well since 1949.

His own Republican Party cannot fathom his constantly changing views on health care, and his war on the federal government agencies.

Trump is an embarrassment to himself, with his total lack of knowledge and facts on history and science.

It is hard to imagine that we have had a more ignorant, clueless President than Donald Trump, with only possibly Warren G. Harding, and maybe George W. Bush competing for that dubious honor, but even they had some competent cabinet members and advisers, while it seems no one can stop Trump or control him in any fashion.

Yes, there is James Mattis and H R McMaster, and Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, but none of these people seem to be able to stop the reckless statements and weird behavior of Donald Trump.

It is time for Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment, Section 4, in consultation with Congressional leaders, and become “Acting President”, until and when Donald Trump is pushed to resign or be forced out by impeachment, as incompetent and dangerous mentally to hold the office of President of the United States.

We cannot afford to have a nuclear war or some other kind of major war or other disaster, because government leaders are unwilling or courageous enough to take action on a timely basis!

54 Percent Of Voters Against Trump On Election Day, Same Percentage After 100 Days Of Trump Presidency

On Election Day 2016, 54 percent, a clear strong majority, voted AGAINST Donald Trump.

The Electoral College system elected Donald Trump, NOT the American people.

Now, 100 days into his administration, the same 54 percent, a clear strong majority, has condemned and rejected Donald Trump’s record.

What else is needed to know?

The American people, counting one person one vote, have rejected Donald Trump and his despicable domestic and foreign agenda, and no President has ever had such a rejection in the era of public opinion polls since Harry Truman to now.

The American people have voted no confidence in a President who is:

a loose cannon;

a mentally deranged leader;

a person who lives in an alternate reality;

a man who is racist, misogynistic, nativist, and associates with antisemites;

a man who consorts with authoritarian leaders who deny their own people basic human rights;

a man who is totally ignorant of history, science, and basic morals and ethics;

a man who is out to promote the elite wealthy over the middle class and poor population of this nation;

a person who is out to destroy all labor, consumer, environmental laws in favor of the interests of corporations;

a President who is undermining our relations with our allies and friends in the world;

and a man who is truly the LIAR IN CHIEF, rather than the Commander in Chief of this nation, and never admits any mistakes or errors, and tells mistruths multiple times a day.

Donald Trump is a total disaster and embarrassment as our 45th President, and undermines respect for the office, and definitely raises the stock of our worst Presidents and most controversial Presidents up a notch!

Donald Trump’s First Hundred Days: An F Grade Is Appropriate! Neil Gorsuch Is The Only “Accomplishment”!

This is the season for judgment on Donald Trump’s First Hundred Days, and being a professor of history and political science, as well as a lecturer, blogger, and published author of two books and many articles, the conclusion is clear.

Donald Trump gets a F for his performance, easily the least accomplished President in the first Hundred Days, with only one major accomplishment, the approval by the US Senate of his Supreme Court nominee, Neil Gorsuch.

But even that only came about because of the Republican decision to abandon the filibuster rule, therefore allowing Gorsuch to be confirmed without a 60 vote margin usually required before a final vote. And it seems likely that Gorsuch will, sadly, take America backwards, maybe more so than his predecessor, Antonin Scalia. Gorsuch will affect constitutional law in a detrimental way, based on his earlier record as a circuit court judge.

Otherwise, Trump has been all bluster and bullyism, who has made many promises, and none of them nearing fulfillment. Trump’s public opinion ratings are by far the lowest of any President since polling began, particularly at this early a stage of his time in office. He has never had the majority of the nation behind him, either in the election, during the transition, or now after a hundred days in office.

Donald Trump has done more to divide America in his first Hundred Days than any previous President, and he relishes conflict, rather than compromise and unity. He has pitted his white working class supporters against minorities, and yet he is showing lack of any concern about those who supported him. There are signs already of disillusionment and “buyer’s remorse” by many who voted for Trump.

He has promised a Mexico Wall which will not work, if it is ever built, and it will add many tens of billions to the national debt, and Mexico is not going to pay for the Wall, and one hopes Trump is not ready to start a war with our neighbor, as he has more than enough foreign policy problems as it is.

He saw his National Security Adviser, Michael Flynn, forced to resign in less than a month, and there has been total chaos, anarchy, and disarray with the White House staff, with the only good thing being the lessening of the influence of right wing radical Stephen Bannon, and the rise of the influence of Ivanka Trump, and her husband Jared Kushner. It is hoped that the couple will have a humanizing influence on Trump, which would be a good thing.

Meanwhile, the Russian connection to Trump is still being investigated, and could force him out of office at some point. But meanwhile, Trump has been saber rattling with North Korea and Iran, and has bombed Syria and Afghanistan, and continues to promise the total destruction of ISIL (ISIS). Relations with Russia, at least publicly, are deteriorating as well.

Trump has managed to create hostility and antagonism with such allies as Great Britain, France, Germany, Canada, and Australia, while seemingly cozying up to China over the Korean issue, and therefore changing his hostile tone in the campaign toward China.

Trump has shown his total ignorance of history and of science, and has declared war on the environment, on consumer rights, on labor rights, on women’s rights, on the Hispanic community, on African Americans, and on the health care system itself. He seems unconcerned about the loss of health care for 24 million Americans, and is just out to trash his predecessor, Barack Obama.

His appointments to his cabinet are atrocious, and we have the most terrifying Attorney General in all of American history in Jeff Sessions.

Trump has failed to gain any legislative accomplishments, and has, instead, used twice as many executive orders than his last two predecessors, but many are mean spirited and negative, undermining our values and the historical accomplishments of government in the past hundred years since Franklin D. Roosevelt, and including Republican Presidents, as well as Democrats.

Trump makes Richard Nixon look much better, and even the weaknesses and shortcomings of George W. Bush pale by comparison, as at least Bush was a decent human being, while wrong headed.

His anti immigrant, nativist stand is a stain on history, and the tragedy of deportation of children protected under executive order of Barack Obama adds to the horrors of families being torn apart.

His condemnation of the judiciary is detrimental to respect for the law, and his Muslim bans have been held up by courageous federal court judges.

Trump, in many ways, is the third President without a party, as there is a major split in the Republican Party, and there are many officeholders and conservative journalists and intellectuals who have major problems with him. John Tyler and Andrew Johnson are the earlier Presidents who had no party backing, but Trump was elected, while they were not, but Trump’s constant switches of position, and his lying, and insulting, undermine his Presidency dramatically.

Donald Trump comes across, ultimately, as the least likable President, if one judges by his character, his behavior, and his basic values.

Trump has no background, experience, knowledge, or ethical standard to be our President, and one must recall that 54 percent of those who voted, were against him, and he is the 7th lowest popular vote percentage winner of all Presidents, with the others–John Quincy Adams, Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Bill Clinton, Richard Nixon, and James Buchanan–all having two or three opponents who won electoral votes, while Trump only had Hillary Clinton as an electoral vote competitor. And Hillary won the biggest margin of popular votes of any losing candidate–2.85 million popular votes.

The nightmare of Donald Trump has just begun, and America is a loser for having, somehow, elected this egomaniac and narcissist, who is only out for his own glorification!

The Pure Ignorance And Stupidity Of Donald Trump Is Beyond Belief!

Donald Trump is supposed to be an intelligent man, but if one listens to much of what he says, one can come to the conclusion that he is extremely ignorant and stupid.

He claims to be smarter than everyone, and that his best advisor is who he looks at in the mirror.

So he tells us that climate change and global warming is a hoax.

He informs us that Korea was part of China.

He tells us that his First Hundred Days are the most accomplished of any President, forgetting Franklin D. Roosevelt.

He talks about Frederick Douglass as if he was still alive, although he died in 1895.

He informs us that ISIL (ISIS) is due to Barack Obama, although it is actually due to the Iraq War initiated by George W. Bush and Dick Cheney.

He claims that the unemployment rate and jobs report under him is fantastic, while repudiating similar figures in the last months in office of Barack Obama as fake statistics.

He says that Barack Obama left a mess, even though Obama created more jobs in his Presidency than any President, and left us with a tripling of the stock market and halved the unemployment rate when he came in, having inherited the worst economic conditions since Herbert Hoover and the Great Depression.

He lies about inauguration crowds, and the numbers at the New England Patriots White House event.

The man is a perpetual liar and deceiver of the facts, and yet has millions of clueless people still honoring him.

It is in many ways as if America elected a totally inept, unstable, ill informed leader, and yet not an issue to millions of gullible Americans, which says legions about them, and is a sign of the massive problems we face.

Alternative facts, which means pure right wing propaganda, is rampant, and millions of Americans are totally unaware of the realities of science and history, and simply believe what right wing media tells them.

Trump Declaration Of War On The Arts, Humanities, PBS, National Public Radio, And Woodrow Wilson International Center For Scholars

Donald Trump’s budget proposal is a declaration of war on the arts, humanities and history, undermining artists, museums, and cultural organizations, although the total budget of all cultural institutions supported by federal money is minuscule, just a few hundred million of 1.1 trillion of total annual discretionary spending, about .0003 percent of the budget.

All the creative work of the National Endowment for the Humanities and National Endowment for the Arts would be wiped out, and there would also be elimination of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting which provides funding for PBS and National Public Radio, and of the Woodrow Wilson International Center For Scholars.

So all funding for cultural and educational institutions would be ended, a repudiation of the value of intellectual pursuits, and closing down agencies that have done so much good for America, opening up the eyes and minds of tens of millions of Americans who were educated by the creative work of intellectuals in all fields of the arts and humanities.

We are seeing the suppression of our institutional memory of knowledge.

This move by Trump would repudiate all the good work done in the arts and humanities by Franklin D. Roosevelt during the Great Depression via the Works Projects Administration (WPA) to keep the cultural community alive and thriving.

It also is 52 years since Lyndon B. Johnson made a major commitment to culture and the arts, through the establishment by Congress of the NEH, PBS, NEA, and the Wilson Center.

All decent people must fight this anti intellectualism full throttle!

First Thoughts After The Inauguration: How Nasty, Mean Spirited, And Lacking In Compassion Donald Trump Really Is!

I had said I was taking a day off from commentary, and will write in greater detail tomorrow, but I felt a need to comment just before midnight on Inauguration Day, so here goes!

Donald Trump in just 12 hours has made clear just how nasty, mean spirited, and lacking in compassion he really is!

He claims that he is in the White House for the average American, but he has painted a picture of America which is very dark, very pessimistic, and very lacking in truth.

He claims there is a “carnage” that has gone on, even though Barack Obama presided over more employment gains than any President in history, and starting from a economic disaster known as the Great Recession, and in danger of falling further into another Great Depression!

He claims concern for mothers and children in the “ghettos” in the cities, but has never once indicated what he will do.

He declares “America First” without any understanding of the history of that term.

He has no knowledge or understanding of history or science, as he declares war on the environment, with lack of concern for our children and grandchildren by putting profits ahead of health and safety in the future.

He is basically telling our allies in Europe and Asia to go to hell, and promoting isolationism, protectionism, super nationalism bordering on Fascism.

He talks about America being great again, when it already is, but is willing to destroy all progress accomplished under his predecessor, who he spent five years destroying, and now will put the final nails in the 44th President’s legacy.

He says he cares about the “forgotten people”, but he is taking steps to harm these same people, including many who voted for him.

How can this man sleep at night, have no conscience, and be almost gleeful at destroying all of the great social and economic progress from Theodore Roosevelt to Barack Obama?

It as if the devil is in him, Satan in a way, a man with no ethics, morals, or scruples.

One has to believe in divine retribution in the next world, or “what goes around, comes around”–Karma!

Factual Knowledge Unimportant To Donald Trump: Substance Does Not Matter!

It is very clear that Donald Trump wants to be President, but has not done the “homework” needed, as he, regularly, shows ignorance of basic information about international affairs and foreign policy, and also over simplifies domestic issues that the nation faces.

His lack of knowledge is astounding, with his ignorance shining through his bravado, his bullying, and his ego maniacal behavior in public meetings.

Trump seems to think his charisma and controversial nature can carry him through to victory, but that is not going to work, once we get past the novelty of a businessman, who has never really studied public affairs, as he has always been engaged in “the art of the deal”, as his best selling book is named.

Once in the Oval Office, without any clear and detailed knowledge of what history and political sciences and foreign policy reveal, he is in for a rude awakening, which this nation can ill afford.

Trump may be affronted by being challenged by media who ask him specific questions, but that is far less than the daunting challenges he would face if he became President.

The whole idea that a non politician is qualified to be President is totally preposterous, as would one want a doctor who did not have proper medical training  and knowledge?  Would one want an attorney who had not mastered the law and the Constitution? Would one go to a dentist who did not have expertise to do dental surgery?  Would one wish to hire an accountant to do one’s business or personal taxes, who had no training?  Would a sports team allow someone to be on their team who had no training or proven skills?

Why is it that ignorant people seem to think “anyone” who claims to be qualified , is truly someone we should give power and control over nuclear weapons because they touch a nerve of disillusionment and discontent in the mass of the population?  Is that the way to run a government, to put amateurs in power?

Happy 239th Birthday, America! Lots Of Work To Do For A Better And “More Perfect Union”!

It is hard to believe that we have reached the 239th birthday of the United States, as the author can well remember the bicentennial in 1976, when Gerald Ford was President.

We have come a long way as a nation, but we still have a lot of work to do, including, in no special order:

Working to overcome racism, nativism, misogyny, and homophobia, too widespread in our great nation

Improving our economy so that there are real opportunities for the “American Dream”, and the revival of the middle class, but also concern and action for the poor among us

Dealing with the reality of environmental threats to our planet, and not allowing the deniers of climate change to destroy our future

Coming to grips with foreign threats, particularly, but not only, Islamic terrorism, but realizing the great dangers from domestic terrorism that have caused more deaths and incidents than any other cause of harm to Americans

Working against the promotion of mythology through religion, undermining the truths of science and history

These are the unfinished work that faces America in its future, and the movement toward “a more perfect union”!