552 Comments

I am contemplating why: "when the Capitol was under attack and the next three people in the line of succession to the presidency were all inside the besieged building." TFG was filming a video outside the WH.

Because he could. He is all about staging and showmanship. It's all a play and he wants to be the lead...forever. TFG would have been fine with the Capitol literally going up in flames burning to a cinder all it's inhabitants. Does anyone really think he would care about a line of succession?

And he is a coward. So he would have had assurances from the Secret Service that he was in a safe place. (as Michael Sanchez already described)

Just the fact that the President of the United States stood by for hours while our Capitol (filled with OUR government leaders) was under attack - filmed for the world to see - should have been enough to arrest him the very next day. But certainly, it should have happened no later than January 21.

What more evidence is needed? I just don't get it. I just don't.

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On the surface, it is truly a “don’t get it” moment. Beneath the surface, I suspect it is fear that it could spark further violence from an already unhinged wing of the right.

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I suspect you are correct, but it makes my blood run cold to think that we could literally lose our current democratic (small d) method of government because of fear of violence brought about by quite possibly the most powerful mob boss of all time.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

I understand the emotions, but strongly disagree on the expectations of how this plays out in this thread.

The original question is, "What more evidence is needed?"

But the question doesn't make sense. What more evidence is needed for what? Which statue are we referring to? What are the standards for successful conviction? Of the information we have, what is permissible in court? And maybe most important, what meets standards for proving intent? I don't know, do any of you?

These are all questions hidden behind hand-waving and insisting we have "evidence" and that there is "danger" if we don't act on this "evidence."

But since we don't even know what evidence we need, let alone whether or not we have it, I think we should sit back and stop working against the people that do know these things, and have built up every reason to trust them in the past.

If we want to work on the side of justice, I think our effort would be better spent on amplifying the messages of the January 6 committee, celebrating it's success, and acknowledging that uncovering the truth is only real window to proscribe accountability and justice.

If we don't get more people on board with the truth, arrests can't help us.

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You know, as much as I'd like to see Trump do the perp walk in front of the cameras, purely out of a sense of anger and spite, I would be quite content with doing no more than barring him from ever seeking government office again. That doesn't involve the courts. It DOES involve the legislature, and there were TWO opportunities for it to happen, laid in front of the Republican Party in Congress, which declined to impeach that orange hairball.

And this is where the root of all this lies: the Republican Party. Not the courts. Not the bureaucracy. Not even the people of this country, though an unconscionably large number of people continue to support the Republican Party. But the Party is the problem.

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One single fact that the RNC is being manipulated by the orange guy to pay for his legal defenses not related to campaigning or during his presidency is a big, big signal of the party's demise.

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It's a big part of it, but without the votes and voters it attracts it would have no more influence than Jill Stein's "Greens" or the Libertarians. This is an instance where if one cuts off the head, the body will grow another one. As it's done more than once in U.S. history. George Wallace, after all, was not a Republican, though the current crop sure learned a lot from his playbook.

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And this raises the question of whether a democracy of the sort the founders envisioned, or the thing it has morphed into, is really feasible. If we trace this back to the voters, and say that, yes, The People are really that divided, then the Congress IS an accurate reflection of the social dysfunction of modern Americans.

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Amen and preach it! I feel like a broken record these days. You want a prison sentence? First there's an investigation (that's where we are now), in this instance the next step is to refer the matter to the DOJ, then the DOJ reviews the evidence and maybe investigates some more. If/when they think there is enough for an indictment, it goes to a grand jury who then reviews the potential case. The grand jury says yay or nay. Only if the grand jury agrees there is enough to indict is there an indictment. At that point an indictment is issued and there should be a trial or offer of a plea. If you have a trial, the jury makes the call for innocent or guilty and the judge sentences based on the jury's findings. It's painfully slow, but it is the process for a reason.

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Any minute now I'm going to drag out those great lines from _Man for All Seasons_ about the importance of the rule of law. The ones about giving the benefit of law to the devil himself *for one's own safety's sake*. Thank you!

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my trouble with "A Man for All Seasons" is that More was very, very far from being a saint. he really LOVED torturing Protestants. and I have no pony in this race.

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Thank you. I wonder if the people asking why it's taking so long have ever been in the position where overzealous politicians and/or law enforcement were trampling laws and conventions to get to *them*. That's what the laws and conventions are supposed to protect us -- all of us -- against, although for sure their protection is often selective and otherwise flawed.

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Arrests and convictions clarify and underscore that a crime has been committed

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More accurately, they *express the view of those in power* that a crime has been committed. This is why arrests and (rigged) trials are so popular with dictators -- and why Trump et al. regularly call for the arrest of their opponents: because this convinces their followers have committed crimes. In these times, when trust in the rule of law is shaky (often for very good reasons), I think it's especially important to keep this in mind.

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True that the justice apparatus can be co opted by dictatorships ( and is) but

The impotent hearings with person after person giving the finger to congressional subpoena… not good. And where is the justice dept??? We saw the crime on TV!

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That makes sense - I'm sure there is more to this equation than meets the eye - I have the impression that prosecutors are disinclined to press a case without a good chance they will win ... aside from that, look at all the people in the general populous who are being held accountable for their choices and sent to jail/prison ... kind of like a driftnet, or a test of all who get caught up in the drama ...?

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I totally agree with you Cathy. Not taking action and allowing his cronies in the Senate to let him walk away a second time after being impeached has done nothing but given the radical right and him more power. Our rule of law seems to work ONLY when “we the people” step out of line and break a law ( no matter how miner or even accidentally).

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Cathy, that fear is very real. I share it with you.

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Small d democracy is already circling the drain in the US. Midterm elections are coming next year along with the possibility that the Republicans will once again be in control of both houses of Congress before the year is out .

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Good point.

But the violence may be sparked anyway. There is a palpable irrational anger out there - ready to do damage to us and the US. We may see a time when the nation must put down another insurrection - especially if TFG loses another election. I want to be wrong.

HCR could answer this better than I: If Hamilton or Paine had been the AG at a time like this do you think they would have hesitated or been intimidated?

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i think it is time to stop the intimidation by terrorists who are controlling our government and across our nation in our state's rights this very moment. This is already a coup. And we need to show we have some damned muscles.

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It’s very, very late in the day. The balance scale for this year (post 1/6) is extremely depressing.

It’s deeply disturbing to see President Biden’s administration has had, on balance, an extraordinarily successful first term and he is getting pounded in the polls. Something is at work here. A mainstream media desperately anxious to shore up their “fair and balanced” creds and in doing so overscolding inevitable mistakes and downplaying undoubted, far reaching successes? Or is there something deeper? Is America in a slow drift downward into nihilism, a mostly unconscious placement of the pieces for an all out confrontation because the people can no longer stand the tension of living in a state of extreme polarity? The United States, under Trump, gave up on any idea of being a melting pot. It is now seemingly lurching towards becoming a cauldron.

The level of vitriol towards politicians is becoming dangerous. A commenter below points out that Liz Cheney Isn’t cowering in fear, a statement I agree with and laud. But neither is Joe Manchin. The protests against him have been very aggressive, very personal and in truth frightening. He has specifically referenced them in an interview this week, stating (and I paraphrase) that people don’t know West Virginians if they think they can be kicked into submission. I hold no brief whatsoever for Manchin, but that article gave me pause. It reminded me of the day that Sinema was followed into a bathroom. One would assume that was a frightening moment. There’s no moral excuse for that kind of behavior. But there is a reason. Politicians have clearly disgraced - disgraced - the offices they hold. Lauren Boebert, Madison Cawthorn, Marjorie Taylor Greene, and Paul Gosar are but a few examples. It is a short step only to see all of them as being justifiably in the crosshairs. Those downward spasms in illogic slide America closer to the brink.

The cancer is spreading rapidly as there seems to be very little to check it. Political opportunism has reached new lows. An example from Texas stands out. Governor Abbott is fending off a primary challenge from a greater extremist than he, a man expelled from the Army for torturing Iraqis. When he began his campaign with broadsides at Abbott for his inability to control the border, Abbott sent in the National Guard. It was a political stunt. The Guardsmen do nothing. One describes his days as sleeping in a Humvee. No time was given to Guardsmen to prepare for the mission, to get their civilian lives in order.

Inevitably, there has been discontent, morphing to anguish. In the last month there has been a wave of suicides - an almost predictable consequence. https://www.armytimes.com/news/your-army/2021/12/23/wave-of-suicides-hits-texas-national-guards-border-mission/

I hold faith only in the Committee now. I expect them to succeed, but even if they fail, they will have set an example that may counter, if only temporarily, the descent into madness that is the US in 2021.

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I have been paying close attention for 40 years, I see the descent into hell as well. I think of myself as a closet optimist, but so hard to keep the faith with half our government playing the nazi game and the media just blathering nonsense (not just Rupert)

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Agreed! Liz Cheney isn't cowering in fear. I’d guess she’s getting death threats on a daily basis. Not doing the right thing because you fear the terrorists is a terrible precedent. People in the Capitol already died from this… violence has been on the table from the get go. Hoping to prevent it after the fact makes no sense. My hair is on fire!!!

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That’s because Liz Cheney is a Republican. Ha ha ha ha. The Democrats are flabby. I’m a Democrat. I can say this.

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This old Dem agrees

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It is a “coup” taking place across the country by one party(minority) seeking to impose their will against the whole country. A majority of states are controlled by Republicans, most of which seem intent to subvert the grand experiment in Democracy. They will use any and all tools to do this, including threats of violence. They are most likely aware that we have grown increasingly intolerant of our foreign wars, and have not the stomach for bloodshed in our own streets. I suspect a lot of people would kick the can of Democracy down the road if it means relative peace.

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Well, what is "relative peace" and for whom? I doubt that people of color, women, LGBTQ, children petrified of getting shot in school, those in poverty including the elderly and anyone of non-radical Christian faiths will feel that they exist in "peace." I am in a Scrooge mood and I say Scroo kicking the can of Democracy down the road. I am ready to fight for our country.

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I agree with all you say, and am ready to fight for Democratic ideals. Much is at stake.

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So am I Penelope!!!!

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I hope you are wrong. I hope the majority is ready to fight to save our democracy. Is living in an autocracy relatively peaceful???

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I am not necessarily making a prediction. I am reading the tea leaves and seeing an altogether too complacent populace as indicated, in part, but a huge non-voter block. Is autocracy peaceful? Sure, as long as you do not question the actions or words of those in power.

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Maybe a Kardashian could take the lead, they seem to have more followers than the average bear. Yes, I jest, sort of

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Who isn’t showing some damned muscles? Seems like democracy and rule of law is working remarkably well.

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Texas is purging voter rolls at this time.

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Got fundraising letters from Ken Paxton and Ted Cruz, weird since I’m a very old Dem. Both had same message, Dems are trying to take our freedom. Both need to be in jail. But I heard an old crone next to me in dining room of assist. Living blather about how Dems are taking our freedom. Rupert’s messaging is always focused and repeated ad nauseam. It works

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Well, our voting rights are being eroded everyday. Our vulnerable citizens are continually being brainwashed by hogwash propaganda, and the "elite' seem to be above the law in not being put into the slammer for blatantly refusing to respect our rule of law. And they casually plead the 5th so they will not incriminate themselves.Or worse, TFG pardoned criminal behaviors. How screwed up is that? This is a coup on our elections, with intentions to threaten or murder our elected officials, and voting officials and school board members. And we have 137 of them in our government that signed an atticus brief stating that TFG did not lose the election! We are paying for them to sit and obstruct and pass or not pass bills. Pure hell for a democracy and people like other butts and obstruct. Yeah, I am on a rant today because I work my ass off to pay for these idiots that will probably get away again. We paid for several investigations that went nowhere. Yep. I am anxious, ticked off and mad that there is a pandemic that prevents us from public resistance.

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Oh, really? Read what Virginia Republicans are saying:

https://thebullelephant.com/

And these are the people who as of Jan 15 will control the government of Virginia.

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And yet, if tfg goes unpunished, there may also be violence.

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(Sorry, I don't mean to pick on you in particular, but the whole line of reasoning has me frustrated, so I'll put it all here.)

Trump has lost his ability to do business. The Trump organization has been indicted. Banks shun him. He lost his efforts to overturn the election. Both he and his people are hounded on all sides.

DoJ has been fast and effective holding people to account, even when Trump was in office! Flynn, Weisselberg, Ppadopoulos, Gates, Nader, Manfort, Cohen, etc, etc. all admitted guilt or proven guilty. And more than 670 people have been charged in the January 6 terrorist attack, those prosecutions are going smashingly well.

The process is clicking along like clockwork. Truth is coming out. Why do we wake up each morning, look at whatever our leaders have done, and insist that we're all failing because whatever it is, isn't exactly 10 yards further down the field?

You can always always wish for more. You'll never find happiness if you don't know how to stop yourself and look at what's actually happening.

We have a role to play in all of this...to show our devotion to truth and rule of law as the path to real peace and justice, whether Trump ever gets indicted or not (Please reference West Germany on this. It became a beacon of justice after it let some Nazis go free. Meanwhile East Germany convicted all Nazis, whether the evidence existed or not.)

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I don’t feel picked on. I generally agree with you. A long time ago I was a legal secretary including to criminal defense counsel. What with continuances, an attorney(s) not available for a motion hearing or trial on x date, etc., etc., things appear to move very, very slowly. And I believe in the case of tfg, as slippery as he is and how he has ducked ramifications his entire life, the case MUST BE ironclad.

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It makes little sense to toss a bunch of misguided Americans into jail for having followed Trump’s orders and not arrest Trump himself.

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Some are so much more than “misguided Americans.” Many have been white supremacist evil for longer than tfg. They are just waiting for the shooting to start. The saddest part is that the Repub pols are leading the rank and file to join with the violent ones, with no hesitation whatsoever. Rupert agrees. The MSM seems to going down that rabbit hole as well. Arresting tfg is necessary but the price will be high, I fear.

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The sentences being handed out are for the most part mild slaps on the wrist. When a coup fails, the coup plotters and the foot soldiers should be executed or jailed for a very long time.

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If this “clicking along like clockwork”, I shudder to think of whatever the opposite might be.

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What do you mean? Please explain.

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But Rupert will never tell the cult…

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Wonderful observations, S. Mikelle - finesse and diplomacy, or more politics as football ... and so, we are defined ....

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Yes, and even more violence by the right if he is punished.

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Could we deport him to Russia! Let him try to unseat Putin.

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Wait, WHAT?! What makes you think anyone is hesitating or intimidated?

I don't get where these ideas are coming from??

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Well, it’s been widely reported that people who who work in elections have quit because the death threats cause them fear. I can understand that.

Judges involved in high profile cases have needed intense security. Though they seem to have held in so far, it would not surprise me to see a resignation or two.

And Trump’s inner circle have led hellish lives (in two senses) because of Trump’s ability to find their weak point and dominate them. That’s been legendary.

Would I be stunned if fear was not a calculation in Merrick Garland’s thoughts? Not in the slightest. He could easily rationalize it by using a thicket of procedure before bringing a case. And he could add in “purely logical” apprehension of National violence if he brought a case against Trump?

But if injected with truth serum, it’s perfectly possible that he would reveal fear on a purely personal level. He’s human. I don’t say that with any réprobation of him.

The cases of outstanding courage have been remarkable in my opinion. Brad Raffensperger comes to mind immediately. I think Mike Pence has to be regarded as heroically brave. And above all for some reason I can’t articulate, I hold Gretchen Whitmer in the highest esteem. She was one of the earliest public figures targeted. And she faced them down brilliantly.

So yes I do think there is the possibility of fear/intimidation corroding the DOJ. Of course I have no certainty, but dictators don’t get away with their crimes by being cuddly.

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Whew!! ... yup, yup and yup again ... Adam Schiff as well ....

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Dec 25, 2021·edited Dec 25, 2021

I am long time member of the Electoral Board in a small, rural, red VA county. We have seven precincts. On the night of our Nov 2021 gubernatorial election, after closing the polls and returning their equipment and material to the registrar's vault, THREE of the eight precinct chiefs quit, one of them in tears . . . because . . . . all day long, they were approached by voters who shouted at them: "You stole the election from us last year, you aren't stealing another one."

I have a couple of bumper sticker on my truck identifying me as a Democrat. I have had pistols pulled on me twice and told "All you %$#@$% Democrats ought to be shot." Which is why I now carry a concealed weapon along with a shotgun and an AR-15 in my truck.

You really need to get out more.

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I think that is definitely a fear of Biden's

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Damn the optics, damn the crazed, vocal minority

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I think it is glazed eyed lassitude Fear would be good

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Was this a victory video? I wonder if those videos in the National Archives will be the smoking gun. Former guy sure wants to hide them.

And you are correct. He never saw a camera he didn't like. All he did was pose with the accoutrements of the Presidency surrounding him. The RNC Convention on the South Lawn of Our White House made me so sad at the time. Which reminds me.

Our White House decorations are beautiful! Merry Christmas Eve everyone!

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And did anyone see the concert at the White House on PBS? Wonderful!

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I did and I was wondering how many people herein saw it. I admit that it’s probably petty of me but my stomach turned when they showed extremely briefly a photograph of TFP and Melania during a short segment showing past presidents. As far as I’m concerned TFP tried to destroy our democracy and I detest any unnecessary reference to him. Obviously if they didn’t show him that would create a big brouhaha so I understand why they did.

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Let’s hope someday each history book will have everything and anything about him redacted, including his presidency.

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I hope not. We need future generations to learn from this. My hope is that history books will cover highlights of his egregious acts, concluding with his conviction for various crimes.

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Not if Rupert is still the go to “historian.”

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Merry Christmas to you Barbara.

Your points are well taken. I also feel the videos will open a pandora's box.

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Oh blessed videos. Bring them on…

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Former guy wants to hide everything.

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Having read Carol Leonig’s book about the Secret Service, I wonder if any were in on tfg’s plans. Otherwise why wouldn’t they have beat feet to get him to safety?

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I certainly hope the Secret Service is not expected to stop a bullet for a former president / mob boss.

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From what I took from the book, to my surprise, SS agents are anything but Boy Scouts. And some liked tfg. A lot.

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Yeah, I know. I was around them back in my youth when I flew as a co-pilot on Marine for "I am not a Crook, Nixon. Many agents were a bunch of arrogant guys in empty suits. Always pissed me off when Marine guards saluted them thinking the were someone important!

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Puke

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I think each former and his wife get a lifetime detail. And minor children until of age. Trump extended coverage to his adult children and their spouses for 6 months.

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/may/08/trump-secret-service-detail-children-post-white-house

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UGH what a horrible thought. Of course they are expected to do so. But I pray to God they never have to.

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Here's a wonderful video by Teri Kanefield. I think it will make you feel better about the confusion us laypeople have over "evidence" and indictments. Dr. Richardson has recommended Kanefield to explain legal topics in the past, and IMO she nails it here, specifically for your questions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHlNkUO55oc&t=14s

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Thank you. This Kanefield video is brilliant. And helpful. Patience with outrageous dangerous behavior is hard to manage. But Teri makes the case beautifully.

How simplistic our thinking is. It's as if our fright/flight/fight emotions still dominate what we think are rational, thoughtful brains.

But...if all the extensive investigations do not provide enough "beyond a reasonable doubt" evidence to bring other charges against TFG, there is one simple fact that should send him to the slammer and most importantly, prevent him from running for office again. TFG waited for hours as an insurrection occurred before his very eyes. He did not act to preserve law and order or to save lives. He did not act to protect our government and our elected officials. At a minimum, there must be a statute that could be used to charge him with dereliction of duty.

I say all that with respect for Kanefield's reasoning and understand that the backlash would be powerful. That none of his supporters would be anything other than more angry and emboldened. But TFG would be prevented from being the new guy again. And that is worth more than anything else I can describe or imagine - if only for the sake of the Planet.

Thanks again. I am saving the video :)

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Thank you, excellent video.

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He would not even cede power to Pence when he had his colonoscopy, preferring to dispense with anesthesia. But it does confirm that he knew perfectly well there was no danger of Antifa being the secret mob

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me neither...I don't get it

Watch DON'T LOOK UP a new film satire that depicts exactly how the public is hypnotized by Fox and social media not to know the truth and to dismiss any warnings, especially science warnings

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Nor do I. Why can a simple civilian go to jail for 30 years for having pot in their possession and this blatant criminal Will eventually go free? Sounds like dirty politics to me. What else are we to think?

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On this Christmas day, and with Mr. Alstrom's above observations, I thought, perhaps, Article VI of the Massachusetts Constitution, written by John Adams, might be worth reading:

"Article VI.

No man, or corporation, or association of men, have any other title, to obtain advantages, or particular and exclusive privileges, distinct from those of the community, than what arises from the consideration of services rendered to the public. And this title being in nature, neither hereditary, nor transmissible to children, or descendants, or relations by blood, the idea of a man born a magistrate, lawgiver, or judge, is absurd and unnatural."

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Absolutely on your reasoning for why he filmed his video outside the White House.

About him being arrested before Jan. 21? No, just like with any (above board) arrest, it won't hold up without good evidence. They could not possibly gather that within two weeks. Arresting him prematurely would have been catastrophic.

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Merrick Garland, a fine man, a good judge who would likely have been great on the Court, needs to realize he put aside his black robes and stop acting like an Appeals Court Judge. He has to indict Trump before Trump announces he's running for re-election. Once that happens, it will be impossible. He can't sit back and fiddle while Rome burns, waiting for the 1/6 Committee to make their report. As numerous former Federal prosecutors have noted, there is more than enough evidence out there now at hand to indict Trump. The Justice Department opened their case against John Gotti with less. I am really afraid that the wrong Good Man is sitting in the Attorney General's office. In the meantime, Trump continues to subvert the government, to destroy the basis of our constitutional republic, and to reveal himself every day as the greatest threat this country has ever face, including the Civil War.

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We don't appear to have a strong sense of "justice" in the "justice system" any more. Everything of importance gets appealed up to the Supreme court, where it boils down to an essentially theological reading of the Holy Writ of the Constitution, and examination of legal minutiae.

A crime of national atrocity was committed. The sitting President was involved in it, along with members of Congress. This is as obvious as a punch in the face.

But the DOJ and the Court will do a precise little mincing of words around this matter, debating the true meaning of the word "is", and the outcome is utterly unpredictable.

And that is simply pathetic.

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No one in our government who aides and abets a coup on our country should have rights to anything. Stop TFG and his comrades in using our outdated system for claiming the 5th or stalling our systems. We are in new territory and they need to be slammed swiftly. A year later is not swift and we are almost there.

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Penelope, thank you, you express my frustrations exactly right. I just can’t understand, it is simply maddening, why there is no accountability for these lunatic conservatives out there who are thumbing their noses at justice and getting away with literally everything, laughing all the way to cheering supporters, while local and national level Republican ‘leaders’ change our laws at every step so drastically that they will ensure that Republicans stay in power indefinitely, and Biden and Merrick do nothing. The Democrats in Congress complain that Manchin and Sinema are stopping their voting and social programs agenda, but they aren’t doing anything to move these things forward using the actual power they have to change or abolish the filibuster (McConnell never even hesitated to mess with it numerous times to install his and TFG’s 3 supreme court justices) and yet the longer they hesitate the more the Republicans destroy our democracy. Finally, the 1/6 commission has the smartest legal minds in the country trying to hold a criminal former president to justice, but we already know that when this whole matter goes to the Supreme Court, it’s six conservative majority justices will side with Trump and that will be the end of it. The Republicans will overwhelmingly win in 2022 and reinstate Trump in 2024. Then we can kiss this democracy goodbye once and for all. If that can happen without violence we will all be very lucky. But I don’t see this ending well.

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My concern is what is going to happen on January 6, 2022!

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Joseph, Trump is guilty in the eyes of the commenters here (including mine). That’s not how prosecution and court trials work. Our laws protects the defendant in a criminal trial. Prosecutors have to build a case that removes ALL reasonable doubt. They don’t have that. Yet. They may never have an unassailable case against Trump. Trump has been working the legal system and dancing around the fringes of the law, for 50 years. He’s gotten away, so far, with tax evasion, bank fraud, money laundering, consumer fraud and a host of other things. Trump does not use email. He doesn’t allow lawyers and staffers to take notes in meetings. He conducts all his business through phone calls. This is all deliberate, he doesn’t leave evidence.

A crime of national import was committed. Of that there is no doubt. That Trump ordered it, and was responsible, is obvious to us, but very difficult to prove in a court of law.

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There have been lots of convictions for crimes committed on Trump’s behalf. But notice who goes to jail for those crimes. Stone. Manafort. Cohen. Gates. Flynn. The rioters. Trump’s underlings, doing his bidding. Never Trump. That’s how Trump works.

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exactly!

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As with all monied folks and corporations. Let’s say they get away with murder.

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Dec 25, 2021·edited Dec 25, 2021

I'm just a simple old (very old) soldier, not given over to nuance.

What happened on Jan 6 was an attempted coup. It was planned by people around Trump no doubt with his full knowledge and approval; funded by Trump supporters.

In every failed coup with which I am familiar, the plotters suffered one of three fates:

-- Execution, sometimes on the spot.

-- Jail. For a LOOOONG time.

-- Exile to another country.

None of the above has happened to Trump and his merry band of thugs and none of this is likely to happen. Republicans will take the House in 2022, the committee will be disbanded and the records destroyed.

With state after state changing their electoral rules so GOP-controlled state legislatures get to pick the winner, Trump will be elected and the USA is doomed. We will become a fascist state.

It's not that it CAN happen here, it's that IT IS HAPPENING RIGHT NOW. We are powerless to do anything about it because Sleepy Joe is living in a dream world where everyone gets along and Merrick Garland is happy with his position as a sop for not being on SCOTUS.

I weep for my grandchildren who will live in an unassailable dictatorship. I grew up in the 1950's rural South. The same Jim Crow system that kept blacks in near-slavery will be imposed on anyone who is not a wealthy Republican. Count on it.

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Joe, those failed coups happened in countries without the rule of law or a functioning court system. No grand juries, no indictments, no trials (other than maybe a kangaroo court). Just line ‘em up against a wall and shoot them. That’s not us. Trump and his Republican allies have figured out how to game our legal system. So far. Maybe for long enough to seize power and dismantle it. I don’t disagree with most of what you’ve written, except I don’t want to live in a country where insurrectionists can be executed or imprisoned without a fair trial. I haven’t given up on Merrick Garland. My bet is that he’d love to see Trump and his coup-plotting allies sent away for a very long time.

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I hear you’re dismay. But we must believe. We must!

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He shall be Al Caponed.

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DOJ needs 3-5 layers deep of evidence to have a solid conviction. Trump et al have been operating as an international crime syndicate for decades. They know how to cover up their crumbs

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Well said Joseph, this is as obvious as a punch in the face. They need to indite the bastards, every one of them including those who work in the capital itself, get them off the goddamn television and put them in jail cells, no more competing talking points on the media, starve the media that they use to damage our democracy. People will get less interested in watching their lawyers give updates. We need to put the bastards back under the rocks 🪨 they crawled out from under. This seems so obvious…….

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Absolutely, Dick. Absolutely. Way past time.

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Pathetic is both very polite and a serious understatement.

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Pathetic is too nice a word. I have no words.

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I don't think Garland is fiddling, I'm not sure he's even rosined up his bow yet. All of the lawyers involved are acting like this is business as usual and they are billing by the hour. Why wasn't the NARA data turned over on the 10th if no appeal was filed and why shouldn't the Supreme Court rule now instead of 3 weeks hence. You're quite right about the relative difficulty of indicating candidate Trump compared to citizen T.

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He could declare that he is running tomorrow, could he not? And why the difference? Is it just the perception of a political witch hunt? Of course, all declared candidates get plenty of perks. Does that include immunity from criminal prosecution? He certainly knows how to play the game. Good questions that I have mulled, thank you Dave

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If he declared his candidacy tomorrow, his campaign contributions are accounted for as such, subject to public scrutiny, and have be spent only in certain ways. Right now he’s collecting millions that are loosely accounted for and can be spent on whatever he so chooses. There’s no immunity from state prosecution regardless of campaign status or the office you hold, and either GA or NY may indeed prosecute him. A campaign for federal office won’t protect you from Federal prosecution.

An instructive read on the practical considerations US Attorneys go through would be any of the books on Spiro Agnew’s crimes while he was a MD county supervisor, governor and VP. They were VERY practical as they raced to take Agnew out of the picture before a then-likely Nixon impeachment or resignation.

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wow, old Spiro was our first mob boss. Thank you for info. glad there is a downside to declaring.

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Yes, three weeks is a very, very long time. Are we supposed to believe they haven’t considered this issue already as it worked its way up to them?

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

After Bah Bah Barr, Garland, a more-even-tempered Solon, sought to make DOJ ‘non-political.’ Gradually his prosecutors are building criminal cases related to 1/6. Indictments and criminal sentences so far are up-to-five years. The House 1/6 committee has been assembling a mountain full of documents and testimony that smells criminal to me.

I have moderate confidence that Garland, with prosecutors pressing him, will, with the evidence from the House 1/6 committee, edge into criminal indictments of some of the perpetrators, perhaps including Jabba the Hutt. This would be a massive jump into the political cauldron. (It would also open the floodgates at DOJ, were a Republican president in 2025 to seek political retaliation through his/her Attorney General.

Personally I believe that dangerous disregard for the Constitution and Capitol Building insurrection are criminal and require punishment in federal courts. The authors of the Federalist Papers would certainly agree.

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TCinLA, Though I wholeheartedly concur with your assessment of A.G. Garland, I’m confused by your statement: “He [Garland] has to indict Trump before Trump announces he’s running for re-election. Once that happens, it will be impossible.” Though I’m no expert, I don’t expect Garland can simply indict Trump. Presuming Garland doesn’t appoint special counsel, he, first, would have to confirm that sufficient enough evidence exists to open a case against Trump (that also could include alleged co- conspirators). Next, a grand jury would have to be impaneled, presented with presumably overwhelming evidence, and then would determine whether the evidence was sufficient enough to indict. As for your statement that none of this could occur were Trump, first, to announce that he was running for re-election, I don’t accept the premise, because I don’t accept that anyone is above the rule of law. In closing, I would note that perhaps you and I are saying pretty much the same thing, and I simply have misread your comment.

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It could be that TFG announcing he's running for president would affect the optics of an indictment. Any move against TFG at that point could appear to be a political move to thwart his candidacy rather than a serious legal matter.

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Melinda, I agree, but his supporters are going to shout that from the rooftops no matter when it happens.

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Melinda, Though your point is not without merit, I would note that were Trump and the others at the top being investigated for criminal activity, and some maybe informed they were possible targets, such an undertaking (more so than a Congressional investigation wherein persons of interest more easily can stonewall accountability) would expectedly capture the attention of the country. And, indeed, the country needs to be focused on this, because however important other things are, we nearly are running out the clock on democracy itself, which could result in utter chaos and the breakdown of the rule of law, which depends on our having institutions we can trust. Hence, if we don’t start holding everybody at the top accountable, at least to the point of being subject to full-blown investigation, then we’re essentially giving up on this democracy. As for weighing the conclusiveness of the evidence against the downside of an indictment, that’s for a later day.

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Read Tribe's NYT op-ed - there is sufficient information now to go after him. But after he starts a campaign, it would be "political [prosecution." Watch for him to declare he's running as this gets closer.

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TCinLA, Because we know Trump was engaged in a plan, or at least it certainly appears he was engaged in a plan, there clearly is a sufficient factual predicate to open up a criminal investigation, the point of which would be to generate further, potentially conclusive, evidence, if it exists, of a well- coordinated plan to overturn the election. Additionally, because 1) contrary to a Congressional, mostly partisan, Select Committee, it wouldn’t be so easy for those at the top to stonewall a grand jury and 2) we’re in a precarious, let alone, untenable, position wherein democracy cannot afford for the Democratic Party to lose either House in 22, I see no alternative, under any circumstances, to not holding everybody at the top accountable, at least to the point of being subject to full-blown investigation, lest we risk giving up on democracy altogether. On a final note, as I’ve stated elsewhere, evaluating the conclusiveness of the evidence against the downside of an indictment would come at a later date.

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I believe that one legal issue is whether Trump’s failure to do something is considered a criminal act (his failure to stop insurrectionists going to the Capitol Building and not issuing a strong ‘stop and leave’ declaration when the first evidence of insurrection appeared.) Personally, I consider Trump’s involvement in the BIG LIE culminating in 1/6 insurrection is criminal and indictable. The House 1/6 committee can send Att Gen Garland a letter highlighting criminal actions by Trump and other perps, then Garland could initiate criminal proceedings. Would such a criminal action against Trump end up before the Supreme (Stench) Court?

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I agree, Barbara, the trumpies will try to politicize any legal action against Trump, whether or not he has declared his candidacy for 2024. But TC is right that Garland seems to lack the killer instinct. The only way Trump will stay out of jail is if his coup d'etat succeeds, and he knows it. Garland needs to see the big picture and understand how important his own role is for America's future. Mueller dropped the ball, but Garland has got to do better. If in the final analysis the Supreme Court decides to give Trump a pass, Americans will have no choice but take to the streets.

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David, In my view, if democracy is to be protected, we need prompt engagement from two branches of government. Indeed, quoting Justice Correspondent Elie Mystal, if “the slow moving institutionalist”[Garland] has not already ginned up a full-blown investigation, he must do so immediately. Additionally, and make no mistake about it, the perpetuation of false grievances that the 2020 election was stolen will succeed unimpeded if Senate Democrats don’t change the Senate filibuster rules.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

Completely agree with you, TCinLA. I’m so frustrated with this AG. He appears paralyzed. To my astonishment, it’s a member of the Cheney family who gives me hope that the truth will out. But, Merrick Garland, sadly, no. Prove me wrong, MG. ❤️🤍💙

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Probably Garland is going slow because he wants to have a tight case. This particular offender already escaped two impeachments. Patience could be a virtue because it’s nerve racking to wait

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I think I agree with you, Elena. Garland can't afford to have any loose ends.

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Laurence Tribe's essay in the NYT yesterday pretty much put Garland's feet to the fire. Tribe was Garland's professor, and he isn't mincing words. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/23/opinion/trump-capitol-riot-january-6th.html

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Bronwen, as he should.

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The basis for DOJ/ Garland to prosecute now is set out In Larence Tribe's 12/23/21 NYT Essay . Prisecute now.

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Link to Tribe's 'Will Donald Trump Get Away With Inciting an Insurrection?' is below.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/23/opinion/trump-capitol-riot-january-6th.html

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Excerpts from 'Will Donald Trump Get Away With Inciting and Insurrection' by By Laurence H. Tribe, Donald Ayer and Dennis Aftergut in The New York Times.

'Mr. Garland’s success depends on ensuring that the rule of law endures. That means dissuading future coup plotters by holding the leaders of the insurrection fully accountable for their attempt to overthrow the government. But he cannot do so without a robust criminal investigation of those at the top, from the people who planned, assisted or funded the attempt to overturn the Electoral College vote to those who organized or encouraged the mob attack on the Capitol. To begin with, he might focus on Mark Meadows, Steve Bannon, Rudy Giuliani, John Eastman and even Donald Trump — all of whom were involved, in one way or another, in the events leading up to the attack.'

'Almost a year after the insurrection, we have yet to see any clear indicators that such an investigation is underway, raising the alarming possibility that this administration may never bring charges against those ultimately responsible for the attack.'

'While the Justice Department has filed charges against more than 700 people who participated in the violence, limiting the investigation to these foot soldiers would be a grave mistake: As Joanne Freeman, a Yale historian, wrote this month about the insurrection, “Accountability — the belief that political power holders are responsible for their actions and that blatant violations will be addressed — is the lifeblood of democracy. Without it, there can be no trust in government, and without trust, democratic governments have little power.”

'The legal path to investigate the leaders of the coup attempt is clear. The criminal code prohibits inciting an insurrection or “giving aid or comfort” to those who do, as well as conspiracy to forcibly “prevent, hinder or delay the execution of any law of the United States.” The code also makes it a crime to corruptly impede any official proceeding or deprive citizens of their constitutional right to vote.'

'The president himself sat back for three hours while his chief of staff was barraged with messages from members of Congress and Fox News hosts pleading with him to have Mr. Trump call off the armed mob whose violent passion he had inflamed. That evidence, on its own, may not be enough to convict the former president, but it is certainly enough to require a criminal investigation.'

'It is possible that the department is deferring the decision about starting a full-blown investigative effort pending further work by the House select committee. It is even conceivable that the department is waiting for the committee’s final report so that federal prosecutors can review the documents, interviews and recommendations amassed by House investigators and can consider any potential referrals for criminal prosecution.'

'But such an approach would come at a very high cost. In the prosecution business, interviews need to happen as soon as possible after the events in question, to prevent both forgetfulness and witness coordination to conceal the truth. A comprehensive Department of Justice probe of the leadership is now more urgently needed than ever.'

'It is also imperative that Mr. Trump be included on the list of those being investigated. The media has widely reported his role in many of the relevant events, and there is no persuasive reason to exclude him.'

'First, he has no claim to constitutional immunity from prosecution. The Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Counsel has recognized such immunity only for sitting presidents because a criminal trial would prevent them from discharging the duties of their office. Mr. Trump no longer has those duties to discharge.'

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/23/opinion/trump-capitol-riot-january-6th.html

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telling the insurrectionist that "we love you" is giving comfort to the enemy.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

tRUMP is famous for saying things like "they are good people".

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Considering the question "Can we trust our government?", I recommend watching today's Decomcracy Now!, which is a recorded interview with Edward Snowden, Glenn Greenwald, and Chris Hedges.

www.democracynow.org.

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The optics of Trump's reaction to the 6/1/20 protest in Lafayette Square and the violence of 1/6/21 is stark. On 6/1/20, he hid in the White House bunker until troops cleared the protesters - who were peaceful. On 1/6/21, Trump was watching TV coverage of the violence upstairs in the White House or apparently making several takes of a video out on the grounds. No troops were called to clear anyone for over 3 hours. A 'normal' presidential/secret service reaction to such an attack would have been to whisk him away to a secure location, not make videos out in the yard.

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Steve, The ominous quality of his presidency, the cruelty, the vivid ugliness, the clarity of it as though a poem of villainy, while the people grew into the menace and filled the landscape with grimaces and hate. It is shocking to witness and to know that it is real, that we are living in it. My eyes widen and my skin crawls.

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We have been in 1930's Germany. TFG has been holding brainwashing rallies along with Fox propagandist spewing for the past 6 years. Their plan has worked well. Swift interventions were needed way back. Now it is critical.

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Fern, your mastery of our language is wonderful, even poetic. Do you write poetry in your real life?

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Maia, thank you. I just finished responding to a friend who writes so much better than I can. My reading of poetry has increased, but those lines of mine were right there and evoked by Steve's comment. The feelings expressed are probably common to many of us as citizen witnesses in America at this tormentous time. I cherish our poets but, I am not one of them.

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It all happened in plain sight all while we held out hope that Robert Mueller would LOCK HIM UP!!!

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Millions, upon millions of witnesses are we, Sharon. Suffer and suffer still more as he goes free to destroy and then destroy some more.

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Thanks for the Link Fern. I can vouch for Dennis Aftergut's Federal prosector resume out here CA's Northern District. Diligent Prosecutors are needed.

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Garland can’t just indict Trump. Garland has to have a rock solid case strong enough to convict him. The rules of evidence and prosecution all favor the defendant. Indicting Trump without convicting him would play right into Trumps hands. He’d get megatons of free publicity, he’d be screaming “deep state conspiracy” and “political witch hunt” all day, every day. Then, when he is declared not guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, he’d be a hero and a martyr. As for Gotti, the feds had a much stronger case, leading Gotti to confess to murder and racketeering, and plead guilty. Can you imagine Trump confessing and pleading guilty?

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Yes I can. Remember “ I had to fire Comey…”?

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I agree with you completely JR. This must be a rock solid case, one with no leaks ahead of time. I trust AG Garland.

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In an opinion piece on the New York Times website this morning, Laurence H. Tribe, Donald Ayer and Dennis Aftergut, all of whom have impeccable legal credentials, urge Attorney General Garland to investigate, if he is not already doing so, those accountable for the January 6 insurrection. Enough with the small fry! It is past time to move to the insurrection’s instigators. In my opinion, if this isn’t done, we just might as well cancel the 2022 elections because tolerating the losers’ refusal to accept the results destroys what democracy is all about. I ask how long can we let the fear of violence stop this investigation from taking place? Time is growing short and a Republican Congress elected in November can render this whole issue, and democracy in America for that matter, moot. The essay can be found at:

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/12/23/opinion/trump-capitol-riot-january-6th.html?campaign_id=2&emc=edit_th_20211224&instance_id=48633&nl=todaysheadlines&regi_id=78918068&segment_id=77833&user_id=02fa158150d34dc186b01b1b8ec7a224

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I have to believe Merrick Garland is focused on this and on doing it so that it sticks.

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From your lips to Goddess' ear!

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Yes, I have heard Tribe say it is past time for accountability.

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Here’s the problem as I see it. There is a real and present danger tied to the prosecution of TFP. So any prosecution has to be based on evidence clear to any reasonable person that there is proof beyond any reasonable doubt of TFG’s guilt. Then we have to let the chips fall where they may. We can not shrink from our responsibility to uphold our democracy for which many have given their precious lives in many different ways.

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I'm tempted to quote Matt. 26:65, without necessarily having to tear my clothes, we have the failed insurrectionist's video tape speech encouraging his followers to go to Congress and ensure that they do the right thing. If that isn't sufficient to convict, I suspect nothing will be but I can also see the political risk in convicting him on that alone since many of the cult members think, or thought, that they were upholding the very process he instructed them to destroy. The issue, referencing Robin's comment, isn't the reasonable people who have to be convinced, most of us are; it's the crazies and their media supporters (on both sides) who are profiting from the continuing battle and would lose severely if/when he's convicted and put away.

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In an expedited session, on January 7th, the Supreme Court will consider Trump's emergency petition requesting that the Court block the NARA's release of White House docs to the Select Committee select committee. Given the positions of the involved parties (the Select Committee, the current President and a former President), we are in unchartered waters - especially given the composition of the Court that includes 3 judges appointed by the Plaintiff. (Rhetorical question: Who thinks Gorsuch, Kavanagh and Barrett will recuse themselves???)

That said, we would NOT be in such a position IF Garland had indicted Trump and issued a subpoena for the White House documents. The Court unanimously concluded in US v. Nixon (418 U.S. 683) that (a) to paraphrase, the Justice Department has the right to White house documents relevant to the indictment and (b) "when a claim of presidential privilege as to materials subpoenaed for use in a criminal trial is based, as it is here, not on the ground that military or diplomatic secrets are implicated, but merely on the ground of a generalized interest in confidentiality, the President's generalized assertion of privilege must yield to the demonstrated, specific need for evidence in a pending criminal trial and the fundamental demands of due process of law in the fair administration of criminal justice. Pp. 707—713."

If we have learned anything from history, it is that timidity is not the antidote to authoritarianism.

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Yes, timidity is certainly not the antidote to authoritarianism. Fear of inciting violence is often mistaken for such timidity. In 1776, in 1861 and twice in the Twentienth century, we ultimately discarded reluctance to face up to such violence, and chose to no longer be "timid" in opposing English, Secessionist and German authoritarianism. Are we ready to do that today within our borders? Honestly, I don't know the answer.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

"It seems to me there is also something very odd about that video, in that it appears to have been shot outside the White House at a time when the Capitol was under attack and the next three people in the line of succession to the presidency were all inside the besieged building. The fact that Vice President Mike Pence, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), and President Pro Tempore of the United States Senate Chuck Grassley (R-IA) were all in the same building was unusual by itself, and that they were under attack together was unprecedented. Even aside from normal procedures, with the line of succession in such danger, why wasn’t the president himself in a secure location, rather than outside the White House recording multiple takes of a video?"– HCR

Heather, you have devoted your life to unraveling and understanding the actions of the men and women who create our history. For better or worse, you dig until you find the truth of a situation and communicate that truth. At the risk of assuming too much and over stepping bounds, it seems odd to you, and to many of us, that Trump would shoot a video message outside of the White House multiple times while the next three people in line of succession to the presidency were under siege and in hiding in the Capitol because you, like many of us, believe that Trump actually thought his supporters had the physical capacity and raw passion to storm the building, capture their targets and create his moment of triumph and glory. In that moment Trump believed he would be able to call out the troops in support of his coup and that it would be a done deal. He truly believed he would succeed. And what better backdrop than the White House for Trump to direct his coup and claim his prize?

The optics of the entire day provided the illusion that Trump owned not only the moment but the White House itself. Trump wanted to convey to the nation that HE was in complete control of the siege and "his people" were doing his bidding. His refusal to use specific language to call off the siege bolsters the idea that he had every intention of claiming victory once at least one of the three targets was captured.

Perhaps I oversimplify the meaning of the visuals employed by Trump, but consider this: everything he does is a part of his own reality show. His hair and makeup; he lives his life on one "scene set" after another. He's all about projecting grandeur and opulence; if he projects it and he says it people will believe him. And look – his ploy worked for decades! It almost worked on January 6th. But for the resolve of those who stood their ground against him we might be in a very different place today.

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Daria well said and I want to agree with you. But the other idea in my mind is that he is simply mentally unstable (and has been) and he confuses reality outside his brain with a faux reality inside his brain. I’m not a historian, psychologist, sociologist or any other qualified or type of *ologist. But my life experience tells me he has been and continues to be delusional and can’t discern reality from his contructed illusion aka mental illness.

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Laurie, Yes, he is a legend in his demented mind. I also, think he believed he would prevail until the last minute. Overplayed his hand as they would say in Vegas. He will do it again.

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All narcissists are legend in their own minds. It goes with the territory.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

Well said, Laurie. He is the Emperor in a brand spanking set of New Clothes.

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I am a retired psychiatrist.

Nobody! speaks for psychology. Just as nobody speaks for the universe. Psychology is vaster than we can imagine. Each person who calls themselves a psychologist, which includes my fellow psychiatrists, knows bits of the vast universe of psychology and often identifies with a different "school", often akin to different sects or religions, of psychology. These schools often contradict each other.

I remember Heather saying, probably several years ago in these Letters, something to the effect that people with Trump's psychology don't complete things. From that she predicted he wouldn't finish his presidency.

Psychology is contributed to by everyone who ponders the workings of the psyche.

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"Trump wanted to convey to the nation that HE was in complete control of the siege and "his people" were doing his bidding. ".....

"And what better backdrop than the White House for Trump to direct his coup and claim his prize?".

Excellent response Daria. Thank you.

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Why thanks, Mike!

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"but for the resolve of those who stood their ground against him we might be in a very different place today" OMG, yes!!

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Good post, Daria. You always make me think.

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Thanks for your kind words, Nancy. Happy holidays to you and yours. Stay safe.

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Would you please go work for Merrick Garland?

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Ha! Carol, I'd probably drive him mad.

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The Assistant AG’s appointed to lead are fierce. And intentional. And keeping everything on track. And supposed to drive the Attorney General a bit crazy. You’d fit right in Fab Daria.

💜

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🌷 Thanks, Christine. You are way too generous!💙

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Daria, what a thoughtful and right on post.tRump knew he was safe while trying to get the "right" video outside the WH. Maybe the earlier attempts had him thanking his followers for succeeding in the overthrow. Once he and others realized the coup attempt had failed, the goal of the video became, "go home we love you." As an aside....have you read Fiona Hill's book? She gives amazing/scary descriptions of what the WH was like during tRump's time there.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

Pam, thank you. I have not read Fiona Hill's book in its entirety. As with most books around that administration I simply cannot read them in one fell swoop because they anger or upset me so much.

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I read your letter Heather and it appears so clear that our President was orchestrating a coup. A dictator was trying to take over our country. He failed this time but the fragility of our democracy is frightening. He created severe discord in our country. He continues to dismantle our government by removing secretary of states who don’t support Republicans. We have lost and ruined so many lives in our history to create and protect our democracy. Now is our democracy so corrupt we can’t depend on our courts to protect our right to vote? McConnell and Trump packed the courts to dismantle democracy. Our right to free and fair elections is in jeopardy.

I called my senator from Maine to find out why she is not supporting the Build Back Better Bill. Is she not aware of the plight of woman and children who are living Inn poverty with food insecurity lack of healthcare no paid leave ? Her staff assured me she was aware of thes issues but because she did not like the process of how this bill was created she could not support it. So it is better to keep our children at risk and not have food, shelter and healthcare? How can yoh call yourself a Christian and live in a country with such gross disparity between the haves and have nots? We complain about the price of gas as if this a disaster? The media focuses on the hardship of the price of gas and what a crisis it is. Give me a break. If the sole caregiver works at a job earning $10 an hour how does this family live? That is a crisis. The media has taken on Trumps playbook divide and conquer.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

"Her staff assured me she was aware of the issues but because she did not like the process of how this bill was created she could not support it. "

Excellent post and information on Ms. Collins.

However, as others have pointed out, if even three Republicans would get on board, Ms. Collins would be invisible and irrelevant.

So, the real problem is not Ms. Collins.

The real problem is a completely broken Republican Party that is focused on corruption, money, fakery and money.

Since the BBB plan helps those WITHOUT money, there is nobody to pay off Republicans to get them to vote for that Bill like there is/was with the Defense Authorization Act. Almost all of Republicans just lined up to vote for the bill even though it is a budget buster and no longer needed (we are not at war).

In the Defense Authorization Bill's case, lobby money poured into Republican coffers and that not needed Bill "passed" easily.

So, I recommend we focus on Republicans and their complete corruption where representative government is relevant. As I think Dr. Richardson has sort of pointed us in that direction.

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That rings true Mike. only it seems to me, if they cannot have their way (also so, if they do get their way) we will be at war - one way or another - isn't that how they keep the money flowing into the coffers - not to mention population control ...?

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"isn't that how they keep the money flowing into the coffers ?"

It certainly would appear that your statement is true. Yes.

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Sadly, it does seem to be ... so then, what can be a pathway to peace? Is there a way to turn this unbridled patriotic fervor to serve in defense of truth, justice and peace on earth? Can we appeal to hearts and minds to encourage awakened conscience and integrity over blind faith and unquestioning obedience - love for life over fear of loss, or death ...?

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... maybe a 12 step program addressing addiction to m.o.n.e.y. ...?

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Bingo!

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Susan Collins? Total hypocrite. Kept in office by voter inertia, highly publicized McConnell pork for Maine, masterful selling of her 'moderate' brand, savvy politicking, and serious constituent services.

4 years of going TrumpYoga down dog, has Susan bent like a pretzel.

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Perhaps she is just more honest than the average politician.

She is openly saying: "Nobody has paid me off like my Military Contractor lobby buddies did for the Defense Authorization Bill".

Kind of admirable that she is openly waiting for someone to drop some money on her before she frees up her vote.

American "Democracy" in action lin.

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I have a slightly different mental image. NSFW.

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David,

I highly recommend use of the edit button on this post.

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you mean delete, right?

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

If you press the three vertical dots you can edit your post to remove the unpalatable language describing a representative of the US

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it's not like I didn't anticipate blowback, after all. but I'll manage to survive, thank you.

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David. I encourage professional use of the English language. I was Not providing blowback. Your point is obscured by using language common in middle school boys who have yet to understand the consequences of unprofessional speech patterns.

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Dec 24, 2021·edited Dec 24, 2021

The word following "stupid" should not be used EVER in a discussion of this sort. I spit on that word, and come close to spitting at you for using it.

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I find that word particularly offensive.

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that was the point, wasn't it?

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again, any word this powerful is one I consider a real keeper.

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spit by all means.

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...and for the record....yes, I removed the post, mostly because the game was no longer worth the candle. but I've been using the English language professionally for something like fifty years. not as well as some; better than some others. if my life has been a failure (which, by the way, it largely has been, but I betcha no one reading this is interested) it has NOT been for any lack of verbal skill. "language," thank god, includes plenty of obscenities. sometimes obscenity is necessary, if not demanded. and to judge anyone a "misogynist" on the basis of one word (and I consider any word powerful enough to inspire these gobbets of rage to be pretty magical and definitely worth hanging on to) strikes me as....choose your own word. so many apply, and I figure I've already worn out three or four days of my welcome and will quit while I'm only this far behind. happy holidays again, everybody. really.

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Whew. Get help.

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That word is a meaningless epithet.

Are there admins here? That post should be deleted and the poster warned.

Leaving that post here disgraces the conversation.

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I don't know that the word is meaningless but the person who deployed it indeed disgraces the conversation - by disrespecting our community. Yes by introducing a sexist vulgarity, but also by exploiting HCR's welcome and our good will.

RL's vulgarity is a pointless provocation, as intellectually impotent as it is socially objectionable. After all RL says nothing meaningful about Susan Collins or how we can mitigate the harm of her misdeeds. RL abuses the invitation to contribute something useful.

RL's assertion that the word "must be said" and that by saying it we will raise RL to the bad eminence of being "universally despised" is itself objectionable - because RL's assertion is untrue and unfair. The word need not be said. Although RL may have some compulsion to say it and take some pleasure in challenging us to shower them with disapproval. But by inserting themself into the open discourse of this public sphere in this manner, and inviting attention at least and censorship at worst, RL manipulates the community into a Catch22 position. Say nothing and take the abuse, say something and give RL the satisfaction.

RL does something akin Glock girl Boebert strutting her strap-on at the Capitol. They both display themselves in a way which is garish and manipulative.

RL has not just deployed the violent language of misogyny, but in a trope typical of the abuser, RL has weaponized and perverted the potential of language to connect. And because of that, something should be said.

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I have to say, I agree with you and that what I love about most of our community here is that people are generally respectful minus a few mishaps here and there. We are human. However, if you are a female, this is about the vilest thing you can call a female or a male for that matter. It is unnecessary and a rather lazy way to describe strong feelings. Women need to stand up and demand respect from men. Our country needs to stand up and demand respectful communications from everyone to raise our levels of discourse and self-expression. This is inexcusable and should be deleted. There should be "report" buttons on Substack. Maybe being called out by your peers is enough to delete your post, DL. And you knew you risked it, but did it anyway. Nice bah- humbug gift you gave. Now, you can take back.

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Um, it’s DL —

DAVID LEVINE

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Oops. Yup. Thanks.

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why would anyone get my initials wrong?

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I unintentionally got your initials wrong . Probably inattention. Who we are on this forum is less important than what we contribute in honor of HCR's good work.

You announced that you were dropping a bomb which would hurt people here and that you anticipated universal condemnation. To that degree you were successful. Why would anyone want that success?

As one of my favorite lines from the old screwball comedy movie Ball of Fire goes "Calling Dr. Freud."

Seriously, get help. It's out there. We here are advocating for policies which provide better access to mental healthcare. But we are not the providers.

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Totally unnecessary use of this word, unless the goal is to prove you hate women.

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yeah yeah yeah...you seem to have penetrated your way into some kind of profound truth. or not.

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The word is only an insult if you think strong women with sexual desire are a bad thing. Thus, Mr. Levine reveals himself as a misogynist; "...sometimes you have to say it...."

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seriously, ONE word, and I'm a misogynist? I would think a little ...uhhh...shalll we say RESEARCH might be in order. I don't think I'd feel entitled to judge YOU for a single word. a word that is, to be sure, a serious linguistic blueblood. all of this exemplifies everything vile about pc. and I'm hardly pc's worst enemy, as it happens. but hey...what do I know about myself compared with the superb insights available to YOU. don't ANY of you feel the least bit moronic? if not, reconsider. I possess no competence to judge any of YOU, and don't pretend to possess any. yet so many of you feel quite competent to judge ME. pretty f***ing pathetic. I'm cancelling my subscription. the levels of brilliance encountered here ain't worth five bucks a month.

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Why ever put it that way? What's the use?

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There’s no function for ignoring or flagging another commentor

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David Levine, please remove your post.

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Inexcusable language,

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But the sentiment is spot on

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You loose credibility using trump language.

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Indeed the media have signed on to the Trump/Murdoch playbook. The worst omen I can think of. As to Collins, that’s where hope goes to die.

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Yes…good ole Collins dangled the carrot in our faces way too many times, just to yank it away from us. She is not to be trusted.

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