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Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Current location: PA
Member since: Wed May 11, 2005, 09:48 PM
Number of posts: 10,659

About Me

I love spending time with my grandchildren and gardening.

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Cheney is no defender of democracy

Liz Cheney: Not the Republican hero that we needed in 2021
Cheney is no defender of democracy — she's a dinosaur who misses the old days when GOP corruption was more genteel

From the moment that Donald Trump first ran for president in 2015, there's been a longing — from not just the mainstream media, but from large numbers of Democrats — for Republican heroes who will stand up to him. The tiny percentage of almost entirely elite Republicans who objected to Trump became known as "never-Trumpers" and were exalted in #Resistance circles as patriots and heroes, even though their actual power over the GOP was non-existent. They existed more to prop up this illusion that the Republican Party was once an upstanding party, and that it's only after the advent of Trump that the GOP lost its way.


For one thing, there is no better form of the Republican Party to "take back." The GOP has been the party of Richard Nixon and Joe McCarthy for longer than most Americans have been alive. Trump's mentor, infamously sleazy lawyer Roy Cohn, was influential in Ronald Reagan's administration, at least until he was disbarred and died of AIDS. Reagan's race-baiting, you'll recall, was hardly more subtle than Trump's. And before Trump's Big Lie, we had George W. Bush's "WMDs in Iraq." Jonah Goldberg may play at being the upright conservative now, but he only came up in GOP politics because his mother was involved in destroying the life of a young Monica Lewinsky. The fantasy of the "good Republican" relies on ignoring literal decades of actual Republican behavior.


In 2021, no one more illustrated this gulf between the fantasy of the heroic Republican and the actual scumminess of the GOP than Rep. Liz Cheney of Wyoming.


It's not just that her father was one of the architects of the original big lie, the "WMDs in Iraq" nonsense that was produced to justify the unjustifiable invasion of Iraq. Until Trump tried to overtly steal the 2020 election, Cheney stood by her man through thick and thin. She voted with Trump 93% of the time during his four years in office. When Trump attempted to blackmail the Ukrainian president into falsifying evidence for an anti-Biden conspiracy theory in 2019, Cheney refused to vote to impeach him. She also joins in with every Fox News smear of Democrats, showing that she's fully committed to the GOP's long-standing habit of resorting to dirty tricks.

Most importantly, Cheney opposes voting rights. She supported the long line of Trump judges that were being installed in order to gut the Voting Rights Act. Even after she became an outspoken Trump critic, she vehemently refused to back any kind of legislation to prevent the ongoing state-level efforts by Republicans to make sure Trump's next coup is more effective. She doesn't take issue with Republicans trying to wind down democracy or steal elections. She just wants to put a gloss of respectability on the process. A paperwork coup, where power is obtained by preventing people from voting and by corrupting the election systems, is just fine by Cheney. What grossed her out was the way Trump and his allies kept doing obvious coup-stuff on camera.


America Is One Gut Punch Away From Throwing in the Towel on Democracy

America Is One Gut Punch Away From Throwing in the Towel on Democracy

I remember the political gut punches. They were moments that I could not believe were happening in America. They ran contrary to the idea of America that I had been raised with. But they also defied logic and reason.

While America had been rocked by riots and assassinations when I was a kid, the first big political development in America that shocked me was the election of Ronald Reagan. He was a boob, a Hollywood actor, not even a very good one. At the time, just out of college, I did not really understand the darker forces that were behind his election—the racism and greed, the anti-government ideology that was really just a formula to enable the richest among us to make more and the most racist states to chart their own course.

Reagan, of course, offered a benign face to these changes. When the GOP was taken over by the hard right in the 1990s by men like Newt Gingrich and Tom DeLay, and the “Contract with America” turned into a scorched-earth campaign that deliberately left Washington dysfunctional (because an inert government is the next best thing to no government at all), it was a shock all over again. The extremism of the GOP was getting worse and worse, the nation’s divisions growing deeper and deeper.


When Al Gore won the popular vote but lost the election to George W. Bush thanks to a dubious, highly political call by the U.S. Supreme Court, that too was a gut punch.


Then came the election of Donald Trump, another one in which the person who got the most votes, one of the most highly qualified candidates in our history, was defeated.

It was Reagan times a thousand. Instead of a plastic face from Hollywood we got a corrupt sleazebag known to every New Yorker and to television audiences everywhere as one of the dregs of humanity. We saw him embrace the help of one of our greatest enemies to get elected. We heard him lie. And we watched in disbelief as he lost the popular vote but won in the electoral college.


Trump says a bit too much about James Comey's FBI firing (again)

Trump says a bit too much about James Comey's FBI firing (again)
Donald Trump seemed to volunteer to Fox News that the FBI was on his trail, so he fired the FBI director in order to save his own skin.


In an interview that aired last night, Trump sat down with Fox News' Mark Levin, apparently to help promote a new book with photographs from his time in the White House. Their discussion turned to the Russia scandal, which the former president said may have been made up in Hillary Clinton's kitchen. He added:

"[A] lot of people say to me, 'How you survived is one of the most incredible things.' Don't forget, I fired Comey. Had I not fired Comey, you might not be talking to me right now about a beautiful book of four years at the White House. And we'll see about the future. The future's going to be very interesting. But I fired Comey, that whole group, and now that group is coming back again. I mean, it's not believable. It shouldn't be allowed to happen. It shouldn't be allowed to happen."

The host tried to change the subject, but later in the interview, Trump seemed eager to talk about this some more.

"I was going to say before, if I didn't fire Comey, they were looking to take down the President of the United States. If I didn't fire him, and some people said, 'He made a mistake when he fired Comey.' And now those same people said it was the most incredible instinctual moves that they've ever seen, because I wouldn't — I might be here with you, perhaps we'll be talking about something else. But I don't think I could have survived if I didn't fire him, because it was like a hornet's nest.


And now we have a striking new example. Unprompted, Trump seemed to volunteer to Levin that the FBI was on his trail, so he fired the FBI director in order to save his own skin.


In case anyone's curious, the statute of limitations for federal obstruction of justice is five years. Trump fired Comey four and a half years ago.
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