"On his podcast, Bannon addressed Pence, saying: “You are a stone cold coward…. My head’s blowing up.... I can’t take Pence…and Marc Short and all these Koch guys up there ratting out Trump up on Capitol Hill right now.”

Ratting out Trump. That's rich. One of Trump's own stooges finally fesses up and tells it like it is. Heather, I don't know how you can sift through this muck day in and day out and maintain a semblance of sanity. I realize it's your passion, but my God, you must have nerves of steel! Thank you for every moment you devote to untangling our past and present to get to the truth.

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Feb 5, 2022·edited Feb 5, 2022

OK Democrats, where is your response? The political ads write themselves - "legitimate political discourse" in the classroom, the schoolyard, the workplace, the subway, on the street. Heck, just do a voice-over to video of the riot itself, and of the speeches of Trump and others to promote it. Dramatize what the Republicans have just said, which may be the most outrageous political statement that has ever been endorsed by an American political party.

In 2000, the Republicans delayed healthcare reform by ten years when they ran their "Harry and Louise" ads. Just two married people discussing healthcare issues over the kitchen table. Issues like death panels and the government forcing healthcare decisions on ordinary citizens. A few months of those ads generated popular resistance that killed the Clinton Administration's initiatives to fix healthcare, and limited the ability of Obama to create a system that was as fair and national as it could be. It was an incredibly effective ad campaign that was not tied to any candidate - just an attempt to change the national dialogue.

So, DNC, this is your Harry and Louise moment. Public relations and advertising can focus people on this outrage without damaging the legal battles taking place to punish those who caused this violent riot. Anyone who does not understand in the face of overwhelming evidence that January 6th was not legitimate, or political, or discourse, will never be convinced. If the battle over core American values can be won, this is the issue.

The RNC has given those who believe in American values a golden opportunity. Do not squander it. The fight must be fought here.

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I never knew using the halls of Congress as a toilet was legitimate political discourse. Silly me.

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Since I heard the following thought in September, 2020, it has informed the direction of my search for the truth about this whole mess, asking why the republicans had so completely surrendered and fallen on their knees in worshipful thrall to the orange man. My search led me to Dr. Richardson — and all of you — my refuge of scholarship and veracity. Since I scribbled these words in my field notebook on 9/7/20 I have carried them in my pocket every single day and I read them often, with many other statements that I judge to be true and factual, as a way of recalibrating my probity compass. Every time I read them I tell myself, “I gotta share this with the group someday.” Today the time is right:

“Trump is a pussing boil on a very badly diseased body politic that has problems on a scale that dwarfs even his presidency, that made him possible.” (Anand Giridharadas, Time Ed. at Large, on All In with Chris Hayes, MSNBC, 09072020).

Today’s events, and Dr. Richardson’s excellent Letter, mark history: the Republican Party is in open, take-no-prisoners warfare against Democracy itself, and all of us socialists who stand in their way. The Orange Man is going down, and his controllers have come fully out from their stronghold. Many of us have predicted this; now it comes to pass. They are afraid that those “Koch people” (No relation!) are not just ratting out trump, they are ratting out the whole dang party! Just “legitimate political discourse” indeed.

We’d better get this right....

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Feb 5, 2022·edited Feb 5, 2022

During the Trump administration, it felt like America had no federal government. The events unfolding confirm the adage "trust your feelings." Instead of government, what we had was a period of control by the Mob.

Stop calling the Bannon-Spicer-etc. group assembled in Utah "a political party." It's a macabre gangster organization masquerading as a party and frightening because it might actually merit the label "too big to fail."

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Feb 5, 2022·edited Feb 5, 2022

Everyone seems to think that Pence's statement was a repudiation of the Jan 6 coup. If you listen to his statement, he actually makes a bid to be Trump's replacement. He raises the specter of those demon Democrats trying to federalize elections, then praises the states' rights to run the elections as they see fit, and then he praises the improvements to election security that Republican legislatures have put in place across the country. Those improvements actually ensure continued Republican rule in the key battle-ground states, and confirm that if elections don't go in favor of the GOP, the state can simply and quite constitutionally disregard the popular vote and put forth their own, more correct results.

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Well, Steve,so sorry to hear that your head’s blowing up. We knew you could dish it out, but now you say you can’t take it? Dismantling the administrative state is not as easy as you thought?

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Quoting from my post today over at TAFM:

They are additionally accused of “advancing a political agenda to buoy the Democrat Party’s bleak prospects in the upcoming midterm elections.” They are also accused of “...both using their past professed political affiliation . . .


This is not a stray word. It’s an accusation that Cheney and Kinzinger were never real Republicans, that they were imposters the whole time; that their actions over the past year represent not a break in behavior, but a revelation of their true selves.

This is actual, flat-out Stalinism. After consolidating his power in 1929, Stalin declared war on Soviets he considered tainted by their connections to the political movements that had come before him. Beginning in 1934 he wiped out an ever-changing group of political “enemies.” They were always accused of having never been the loyal revolutionaries they “professed” themselves to be.

Folks, we are waaaaayyyy beyond Hitler and the Nazis now. They never made their enemies into “unpersons” who had never existed, where photographic evidence of their existence was officially erased. But that’s where Ronna Romney and the rest of the RNC are headed.

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Some politicians have believed that "BS" is "legitimate political discourse" for a very long time. If such people treat these institutions with such lack of respect, it is hardly surprising that some enraged, fantasizing vagabonds do likewise despoiling and polluting such hallowed ground.

Time for a very good brush and a clean sweep of those elected who are lying to the people to further their own interests or hide their crimes. I thought lying to Congress was already a crime.....DOJ please note!

So many people in Washington consider that the law is not made to control them....just the little folk! So many in the DOJ apparently think that it is a waste of time going after the "big fish" for small delinquent acts...what's the Hatch Act after all when you are perhaps thinking of Rico or Treason. Time for some real "legitimate political discourse and some straightforward representation of the people....and some respect for our laws and constitution.

And when this comes before the courts, Hah! time to ban judges from political affiliations and end the farce of court stuffing by any party . If you want to be a judge then to learn the the text and the spirit of the law and precedents plus the Constitution guide your decisions and not the whims of any loud-mouthed, passing political phase or icon.The North Carolina Supreme Court just rejected the State's new gerrymandering political map by a 4-3 split....along party lines....excellent decision..... but "Along party lines" ...what is the possible credibility and perenity of such a division and therefore such a judgement as it would inevitably be dependent on the next election.

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Brilliant Looks like a few R s ,either with a recently found conscience or fear or ambition, or beginning to step off the ship Just today two making moral decisions in North Carolina and Arizona Hoping and praying for our democracy and for real journalists that tell the truth based on facts not sensationalism Thanks again for beautifully putting together the facts of a most interesting day😊👏

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Feb 20, 2016

“If you have not figured it out by now that the Repugnicants are not leaders or even workers for the United States but partisan hacks who are only interested in supporting the very rich 1% who pay their campaigns at the expense of the rest of us, then you are as STUPID as the ppl who rally around the likes of Donald Trump, Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio.”

Mar 1, 2016

“Just a few months ago many of us thot that Donald Trump was a joke, a mediocre, boorish business man who dabbled in crap TV shows out of boredom. Now, he is becoming a frightening figure, not entirely by himself but because of his rabid following of ignorant, low-life fascists whom he is dangerously egging on with his hate rhetoric and failure to distance himself from known white supremacy hate groups.”

Dec 17, 2016


I have been meaning to write something of this devastating election, the most frightening in my lifetime of voting in a dozen presidential elections.

It was unbelievable that this unqualified and vile man won the election. I tried reasoning with ppl whom I knew were supportive of him or even those on the lib side who "voted their conscience" instead of voting for his opponent. But, to no avail - ignorance and naiveté won the day and now we all must suffer for the abject stupidity of fools.”

Feb 5, 2022

After Six years of watching what “Can’t Happen Here” Happening, I feel that it is over for Democracy and even Sanity in the United States. A century past, the Germans took this course, abandoned democracy and reason and replaced it with Fascism led by a charismatic, insane cult leader, with the horrendous murder of millions with millions more dying in war. I was born near the end of that war and the assurance that it “Can’t Happen Here.”

And now I have seen the Repugnant Party embrace an Insane Cult Leader; embrace hatred, racism and bigotry that we had slowly pushed back over the course of my life. And, a year after this Insane Cult leader’s followers attempted to wrest the democratic process by force on January 6, 2021, this COMPLICIT REPUGNANT PARTY, is obstructing the investigation of that INSURRECTION, and excusing the murderous rabble who attacked our seat of government just as the Fascist Nazis of a century past as “LEGITIMATE POLITICAL DISCOURSE.” Why this Repugnant Party is not labeled a Fascist Terrorist Organization after this proves to me that it is over for democracy, sanity & decency in this nation. I fear for my grandchildren in the years to come if something is not done soon to stop what is happening here.

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My thoughts upon reading Stephen Bannon's statement, "My head’s blowing up" - I wish it were true! If he could self-destruct, the world would be a better place!

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Feb 5, 2022·edited Feb 5, 2022

Oh Professor Richardson….I’ve said it before. You end a letter sometimes with such a ball buster that it ends up being the envelope for the entire Letter…”It seems that we might be able to choose better leaders than ones who are leaving us at the end of this day in 2022 with the truly legitimate political question: “Ratting him out for what?”

How does that translate to all of you?

For me it’s vote, vote, vote. In spite of. Keep the majority and add to it. In spite of. Make sure Pres Biden’s 4 yrs exist as a supreme counter chess move to the former’s checker game. In spite of. For every bozo dissing the economy and jobs report, correct them with facts. In spite of. With every effort to indoctrinate children and burn books and teachers’ professional status and rewrite history books, support our schools and push push push back. In spite of.

In spite of what? What appears to be overwhelming odds at times? What appears to be the power of the Repubs and a notion of weak-assed Dems? In spite of perception that the entire DOJ is twiddling thumbs?

Nope. In spite of the fact that the American people elected a rat to the Office of President and could not get rid of him through impeachment. It is about who we elect as a leader. And we cannot allow a rat into The House again. Or a complicit aspiring mouse like Pence and his rat Koch.

Please. Let us be an American people whose choices are worthy of the Light that has its hand guiding us. That is what the truth, not the fight, is about.

Thank you HCR. Brilliant.

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"The legitimate object of government, is to do for a community of people, whatever they need to have done, but can not do, at all, or can not, so well do, for themselves -- in their separate, and individual capacities."

Abraham Lincoln

--July 1, 1854 [?] Fragment on Government

I think Ike paraphrased Lincoln on his purpose of government comment. It's one of my favorite sayings.

Lincoln - America's 1st Liberal Progressive President

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Feb 5, 2022·edited Feb 5, 2022

Rich, the "ratting out" part.

So many implications therein. Like culpability. Veracity.

Here is Holly Near on the subject:


So the Koch bunch want a 'legitimate' party to purchase? Expectations of some R Phoenix rising? Is the Federalist Society abandoning idjt? As Gorsuch evidences his funders...in the dark.

Loving the split R party...split the votes, perhaps D's will prevail in the polity.

gratitude to you, Heather, ever and always, for knowledge and perspective!

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Oh so now it's "Legitimate political discourse", eh? This telling a lie over and over again until you tell it so many times that the people believe it is a fascistic tactic used by Hitler and others. One might say that only a fool would believe it but we know what happened to regimes in the past. I am beyond sickened by this group. If their lies weren't so dangerous they would be laughable. It seems to me that this committee has already received a trove of incriminating information. What I fear is that if Republicans gain control of either the House or the Senate, that this information will not see the light of day. This sordid tale is becoming a giant scandal and I cannot wait for each of HCR's letters every day.

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